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Keep the Conversation Going: An Open Letter to Caitlyn Jenner – and the World of Social Media

by JONATHAN APOLLO

Here’s the thing: I’m genuinely tired of appearing to react out of anger toward certain pop culture personalities like Caitlyn Jenner when, truthfully, it’s not actually anger that I usually feel toward her or any given subject in, or of pop culture.

A majority of what I actually feel, most of the time, toward those who have amazing platforms like Caitlyn or Kim Kardashian or even Rob Kardashian, is frustration. And confusion — confusion over seeing people with so much promise either waste it by making a mess of things, or making a fool out of us for believing that they had that promise to begin with.

But, by criticizing instead of correcting, I’m just as wayward as they sometimes are and I don’t want to be that person anymore; not just on social media, but in life overall. So, let’s talk.

Early Friday afternoon, I threw together a very hasty and fiery response to the images of Caitlyn wearing a “Make America Great Again!” hat, just weeks after her friend — you know which friend, I’m sure — decided that transgender men and women were burdens to this country and its military service.

I then published that post on the internet. It’s since been removed. And I’m genuinely sorry, Ms. Jenner, that I ever drafted it in the first place.

I’m sorry, Caitlyn, for speaking out of turn before and not with respect, like I should’ve from the start.

Caitlyn, as I’m sure you’re aware, despite its unified name, the LGBTQ community has been broken for quite some time. And I also know that you knew this, Ms. Caitlyn Jenner, way before you were ever ready to display yourself so beautifully on that Vanity Fair cover in 2015; the very same one that allowed almost everyone to welcome you, all at once, into the world with open arms and open hearts.

“We see you,” we said with love, “and we accept you and your truth, and we are going to love and support you on this journey, because we see YOU.”

And I, like many, was so ready to watch you grow into the woman you deserved to be since the day you were born.

And grow, you did. Fast. Too fast. Way too fast, girl.

In all fairness, it’s easy to see why you may believe that just by standing in your truth as Caitlyn Jenner, the current loudest transgender woman in the room, you’re also the most qualified to go after your former friend whose name rhymes with that big, bulky thing he’s always carrying around on his back on his golf courts (and I’m not talking about his bag of expensive clubs, either).

But, as they would say in my old hood, Ms. Caitlyn Jenner, you are not about that activist life. Not just yet, anyway. And neither am I, for the record — I, like you just mentioned to Jimmy Kimmel, am nothing more than a passenger making his way downtown like Terry Crews on a date with a white chick (okay, you didn’t actually say that last part), but unlike you, I’m not a “gayby” in the LGBTQ community. You are.

And it’s with that in mind and love in my heart for another human being on this Earth, LGBTQ or otherwise, that I say: Ms. Caitlyn Jenner, with all due respect, please take a seat.

This is supposed to be your time to “take chances, make mistakes and get messy,” and all the other things you never got to be growing up, and that’s all you need to be. You’re still new to this game and haven’t picked up all the nuances yet, and that’s fine. Just sit down for a minute and pay attention. Put your listening ears on for a bit and hear what we are saying to you, Cait, because it’s coming from a good place.

Take this time, Caitlyn. It is so very precious and it is long overdue for you. Take this time to learn and grow and do not try so hard to be another person who you, yourself, say that you are not.

 

 

Don’t worry about being “Caitlyn Jenner, the transgender activist”. Just be Cait, just like you asked us to call you and we’re still calling you, even if some ignorant others think they’re funny by using a name that was never yours to begin with (right, Drake Bell?).

Go on and live as you, girl! Just live. We got this and we’ve got you, too. You are family, after all.

-Jonathan

P.S. Give Kim a call, if you can. She misses you — trust me.

 

 


Pop-culture obsessed, opinionated and not afraid of either aspect, Jonathan Apollo tends to have a lot to say about everything and anything — especially when it pertains to the world of entertainment. Check out more of what he has to say on his Facebook page and his Twitter profile. Be warned, though: he’s not afraid to respond when necessary.

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