Question Gender? Your Life Might Fall Apart
From an interview with Andy Izenson, a 28-year-old lawyer living in Brooklyn:
When I moved to the city I discovered the poly community and found all of this support. That was about seven years ago. I only know like one trans person in New York who’s monogamous. Once you start questioning gender, sometimes a lot of other things fall down like a house of cards. [Emphasis mine — RD] If I’ve been told my entire life that I have to be a girl, and if that’s not true, then what are the other things I’ve been told I have to be that might also be fake or not applicable?
I date the occasional cisgender person, but I’m mostly T for T (trans for trans). I have a partner I live with, my statistically significant other, but I don’t use hierarchical understandings of relationships. We live together in a collective house in Brooklyn that’s all queer, all trans, all polyamorous, all very political. I also have a partner who lives in Boston, and another who lives in New Hampshire who I get to see about once a month. I’m just googly-eyed over them right now. I also have a few sweethearts or “comets” in D.C. who I get to see a couple of times a year. “Comet” is a term I heard recently for the type of partner who you collide with occasionally when they come through your orbit in this little burst of brightness that’s brief and beautiful, like a comet.
Izenson says that the Trumpening has caused a disturbance in the Force:
Most of the people that I’m in a relationship with are alarmed and destabilized by the current political climate.
“Destabilized”? How could you tell?
The reader who sent this interview to me took note of the line about everything falling apart once you question gender. Another way to put it is, “Once you start questioning that there is ultimate meaning and purpose in material reality, sometimes a lot of other things fall down like a house of cards.” Andy Izenson is living out the end game of modernity. Andy Izenson is also living in a nuthouse.
We need to recover the sacramental significance of embodiment and place. Extreme loss of this is part of why the West is now in such crisis.
— john milbank (@johnmilbank3) February 17, 2017
UPDATE: A reader writes to say that the reader’s family was part of a conservative private school attended by Andy Izenson as a little girl. The school was not specifically religious, says this reader, but it was full of practicing Catholics and Evangelicals, and observant Jews. “The curriculum was traditional,” says the reader. “You would have been very happy to have had your children in this school.”
The reader is crestfallen to see what has happened to one of the alums. Says the reader: “Despite all we can do to protect our children, we are all dependent on the grace of God.”