On Bruce Jenner

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In case you missed this, Bruce Jenner was involved in a serious car crash earlier today. One woman died, and it’s been reported a possible cause was Jenner’s Polaris UTV being chased by multiple paparazzi.

The wife and I have had myriad chats about Jenner of late—none of them positive. In short: I feel horrible for the man, whose life has gone from one to great athletic achievement to public ridicule and shame. As most readers surely know by now, Jenner is apparently transitioning from male to female via future sex reassignment surgery. This, in and of itself, is nothing to be embarrassed about. People are who they are, and if Bruce Jenner feels that, deep inside, he needs to be a woman, I have no problem with that. And, truly, neither should you. It’s not my business, it’s not your business, and it hurts none of us. People are people. Let them be.

Really, what bothers me here is, well, us. We. The collective. Somewhere along the way, society has decided that: A. Bruce Jenner fascinates us; B. Bruce Jenner deserves to be publicly ridiculed. Perhaps this is simply the Curse of the Kardashians. Or, put different, the curse of being involved with a family of soul-sucking, attention-addicted, money-hungry reality television slaves who know not how to survive without the spotlight. Though I have never been a Kardashian, I am aware enough to know that these people drain the humanity from all things they touch. Perhaps Bruce Jenner, the former husband of Kris Kardashian and a regular on the show, merely snapped.

Whatever the case, I hate how TMZ giddily reports all elements of his demise. I hate how Fox News finds him funny. I hate how he’s determined to be “sick” and “immoral” and “grotesque.” I hate how people like Matt Barber—some self-righteous douche bag—has the nerve to write this (“That emptiness inside, that void you seek to fill cannot be filled by hacking away at yourself. You have a “God-shaped hole” in your heart. You need heart surgery, Bruce, not cosmetic surgery. To attempt change from the outside in is merely superficial. It will lead only to further seeking, heartache and, ultimately, to spiritual death. That longing you feel, that change you seek, can only come from the inside out.”) of a man he’s never met.

In fact, let’s take that last point a tad deeper. I REALLY love how a guy like Barber (professed lover of Jesus) Tweets this …

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Hmm. Maybe, Biff, transgender people (and they’re not “so-called.” They are transgender) commit suicide at a rate 20 times to one because they’re inevitably shunned and humiliated. Maybe, Biff, transgender people wouldn’t feel so inclined to kill themselves if they weren’t being marginalized, ridiculed and called out as sinful self-loathers by people like, eh, you. Ahem.

Here’s an idea: Let’s leave Bruce Jenner alone.

Let’s let the guy be.

5 thoughts on “On Bruce Jenner”

  1. I agree Jeff, but remember he willingly inserted himself into (and I assume profited from) all that Kardashian stuff.
    So if he now has no privacy, whose fault is that?

  2. As I read your post here, my consistency meter went bonkers. Now, if you really are as thin-skinned as your bio states, please note that I am not in attack mode, I’m in inquisitive mode. I am simply asking for your thoughts in response to my observations and questions.

    Are you being intellectually consistent (honest) when you publicly ridicule all of the Kardashians and Matt Barber while calling for people not to publicly ridicule Bruce Jenner? Why is it okay to call some folks “self-righteous douche bags” and “soul-sucking, attention-addicted, money-hungry reality television slaves who know not how to survive without the spotlight,” while at the same time saying it’s wrong for people to say Jenner is “sick,” “immoral,” and “grotesque”? What is the difference between you and those who say such things about Bruce Jenner? Are you not being as self-righteous as you claim Matt Barber to be, if not moreso? Is Mr. Barber not simply expressing his beliefs, based on his religious leanings? What moral authority is it that allows you to say that he is a self-righteous douche bag for doing so?

    Furthermore, your parenthetical comment regarding Matt Barber as a “(professed lover of Jesus)” – would that not fall into the self-righteous category? And, that parenthetical phrase also seems to be a bit of a gratuitous swipe against Christians in general, is it not? A bit of axe-grinding going on there, maybe? Just a wee little bit? Whether he is a lover of Jesus or not, how does that matter in the least regarding the statistic in the post of his that you cite? Either that is a correct statistic or it isn’t. His “professed [love] of Jesus” is completely irrelevant to that fact.

    Then, to make a statement in essence blaming him for the high suicide rate among those who have sex-reassignment surgery by proclaiming that it is so high because people like Matt Barber ridicule and marginalize such persons – do you have any facts to support that claim? Any studies? If not, then was that not a bit unfair – maybe not as nice as it could have been – to say such a thing? And, is it not at all possible that such a high rate of suicide is due to the gender confusion felt by those who have such surgeries rather than their acceptance, or lack thereof, by folks like Matt Barber? I mean, how many folks like Matt Barber do you think Bruce Jenner, or other transgenders, hang out with?

    Again, simply inquiring. I am holding out the possibility that my observations are off the mark here, and that there are indeed arguments which make your post intellectually consistent, which is why I have asked for clarifications from you.

    God bless!


    1. John,

      You come across as holier-than-thou and sanctimonious.

      I can’t speak for Jeff, but I think a large percentage of the country is tired of being judged, tired of being told if we don’t believe in (the right) god we’re going to hell, tired of being told what’s moral and immoral, tired of having hate masqueraded as love, and the immense changes we’ve seen in such a short time reflect that. I feel for people like you– I really do– as it must be a pretty scary time. I don’t care what anybody does, as long they’re not in my face. Your preaching is in my face.

      Let me ask you- why does Mr. Barber use quotations for the words “sex reassignment” and “transgender?” I personally interpreted it that he doesn’t really believe in those two definitions. And I (as an atheist) interpreted Jeff’s mentioning him being a lover of the lord because why would someone who follows tenants like “treat others as you would want to be treated” post a tweet that gloats about suicide rates? It *isn’t* irrelevant, John. It’s not very loving or brotherly, if you ask me.

      I hear quite often about how “freeing” it is after someone has their surgery; that they can finally “be themselves,” who they “always knew they were.” John, how many transgender people do *you* know? Just asking out of curiosity.

      You wanted statistics. Here’s a recent study from UCLA (http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/research/suicide-attempts-among-transgender-and-gender-non-conforming-adults/) that lists harassment, family rejection and discrimination as causes for transgender suicide.

      I think we’ll just have to agree to disagree, John. I just know the winds are changing, and I’m enjoying seeing *all* people being able to enjoy their freedom of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, even if it doesn’t mirror mine.

      G-d bless, indeed.

      1. Ah, yes, Erik…go into attack mode rather than try to have an honest and open discussion about the issues raised and the arguments presented. Very nice, very loving, very open-minded and tolerant of you, eh?

        Let’s start with your 1st paragraph and move down, shall we? “A large percentage of the country is tired of being judged,” you say. Well, tell me this, did Jeff judge the Kardashians and Matt Barber in his column or not, while at the same time telling people how wrong they are to judge Bruce Jenner? Why are you not yelling and screaming at him and telling him what a hateful person he is for judging others? Maybe because he’s judging people that you feel it’s okay to judge because they are scum, less than human, live wasted lives, and such? Are you not judging me, while screaming at me how wrong it is to judge others? Did I judge Jeff? Not at all, I simply asked him some questions based on his own statements to try and make him think. As I am doing with you.

        I thank you for “feeling for me” but let me ask you a question: How is it you feel so secure in your hatred of another that you can condemn them without knowing a thing about them? You don’t know me, yet you spew hatred and vitriol towards me while at the same time condemning those who hate. Do you not spy even the slightest speck of absurdity in your comments? Even just a little bit? Do you consider yourself a tolerant and open-minded person? If so, may I humbly request that some of that be shown to me?

        Now, to interpret Mr. Barber’s post as gloating about suicide rates is a bit harsh don’t you think? Do you know Matt Barber? He merely posted the results of a scientific study. You may think he is misguided and misinformed, but to accuse him of gloating over suicides…have you no shame, sir?

        Regarding the study you cite about transgenders, it wasn’t really a “study” as much as it was a survey. I have no doubt that many transgenders do indeed suffer rejection from family and friends, I am not attempting to downplay that; however, what if I told you that I saw a survey that said Baptists have happier marriages, by far, than any other group of people? And, that came from a “study” done by the Baptist Happy Marriage Committee who sent out a Baptist Happiness in Marriage Survey to 5000 Baptists. Would you accept the results as being 100% accurate?

        Furthermore, the study that showed a 20X greater suicide rate among those who had undergone a sex-reassignment survey was done in Sweden where transgenderism is much more widely-accepted than it is here in the U.S. Why is there such a high rate of suicide among transgenders in a society where they are readily accepted? Is it because of Matt Barber? Should we not do further studies – scientific studies with control groups – to try and determine what is going on to see if we can lower those rates in the future? Well, no such studies will be done if loving, tolerant, open-minded folks like you have their way because you already know what the reason for transgender suicides is – Christians, right? So, no further studies need to be done, just get rid of the Christians. Think about that – your attitudes could result in needed studies not getting done and folks not getting the help they need in the future. You could be killing people. But you don’t really care, do you?

        So, how does it feel to have someone accuse you of what you accuse Matt Barber of? I guess you probably didn’t take that to well, did you? All designed to make you stop and think about what you say and how you say it. Matt Barber is a human being and even if you disagree with him, he still needs to be treated with respect as a human being. I’ll wager that there’s a good chance he thinks I’m going to Hell because I’m a Catholic. Big deal. He still needs to be treated with respect as a human being. Same with the Kardashians. You can disagree with what they do and how they do it, but they still deserve a certain amount of respect as human beings.

        Now, you can say whatever you want to say about me, and that is perfectly fine as I do not cede any control of my emotions over to you, as you have done for me. In other words, rant and rave all you like, if that makes you feel better, makes you feel like a superior intellect putting this poor backwards inferior Son-worshipper in his place. But I would just like to leave you with this thought – why do you so easily hate those whom you do not know? And how will you get to know them if you start off by hating them? What does that say about you?

  3. No dog in this fight as I find any, and all, in this treatise to be flotsam and jetsam. It’s Mr. Pearlman’s blog allowing him to pen whatever he wishes. However had the closing two lines been the lede followed by a blank page I would have been in total agreement.

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