yesterday, while my bus was sitting in traffic on the alaskan way viaduct (this will become a regular occurance in the coming months, i suspect), NPR aired a story on don lemon, a weekend primetime anchor for CNN. the topic of the story?
mr. lemon is gay.
i don’t have anything against this guy. it’s understandable, for him at least, that coming out to the general public, would be a difficult decision. i imagine for any public figure, the choice to come forward with a particularly difficult piece of information about themselves would be a long, well-pondered choice, full of pros and cons.
the story itself wasn’t really so much about lemon making the announcement, but more about tying it to his memoir, transparent, due to be released soon. he also mentions in the interview that he was told by the bigwigs at the network to not say anything.
i’d like to think that we’ve moved beyond slapping a label on a person to make them easier to handle or identify. the black football player. the asian pop star. the gay news anchor. and maybe in other countries, who are far more flexible and open-minded than we are, are beyond these labels.
i’m a little tired of it. we’re such a fucking uptight society and throw ourselves into a panic if someone colors even a smidge outside the lines. why can’t someone just be a football player, or a pop star, or a news anchor? why attach a qualifier to it? if i must be labeled, then i insist that people begin calling me a benefits representative ninja. because ninjas are cool.
the rigidity in which we hold ourselves will, ultimately, be our downfall. i have this idea, a vision of our future, i guess you could call it, that eventually everyone in this country who is able to think for themselves will pull up stakes and repatriate to other countries. a brain-drain, you could call it. we live in a growing nightmare, full of bureaucratic nonsense and straight lines, with a president who probably wants to shove those lines off into curves, but has to stay the course because otherwise, the little changes he accomplishes would come to a standstill.
and wow, i need to stop with the conspiracy theories and anger. really. just call me a person. call don lemon a person. that’s who we are. just people. no need to label us.
or you can call me a ninja. i’d be okay with that.