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Kick Andy Magazine (6th issue): Transgender/Queer

>> Sunday, November 6, 2011


The Latest issue from Kick Andy is on my hand, first of all I want to say I'm sorry for my absence for two months. I have some issues that I have to deal with. But, forget that lets take a peek to the this inspiring magazine...Shall we??

The topic which I found interesting here is about transgender in Indonesia. What will cross your mind if someone says Queer/ Transgender. Well, If you're in Indonesia, you might think about a third-class citizen, prostitute and some other bad image about them which even a straight man will shiver.

I have ever heard (in 2004-2005) when an acquaintance of my friend have a bad (I might say "worst") experience with Queer. He was an "Ojek" (a driver of motorcycle taxi), a queer use his service to take her to a mall. She said she will pay 25000 Rupiahs (2,5 US $ at that time). The driver agreed, so for several hours he take his passenger to the some spots. However, bad things happen after the driver take the queer to his home. the queer said he/she didn't bring enough money, so he/she invite the driver to his/her home. There were several friends of the queer. The driver sexually abused there and for his service as a driver, he got paid 5000 Rupiahs (0,5 US Dollar). If you wondering why the driver didn't fight?? well, he can't. His wife was pregnant at that time. In Indonesia, there's sort of myth or belief that when a woman pregnant, both husband and wife must not doing something reckless (such as killing or torture animals) which may harm the babies when he born (for example, my teacher in a high has a daughter who unable to walk until two years old. some people said that it happened because when his wife pregnant, my teacher tie a chicken's leg too tight). So the driver think if he harm them, his child will get the consequences.

Merlyn Sopjan

Judging by the last passage, probably, you might think that Queer are definitely problem in society. But, What if some queer/transgender try doing in positive way, Merlyn Sopjan and Megie Megawati are several transgender who fight for the Transgender/ Queer existence. Not only that, Megie helping an NGO to assist queers who eager to stop as a prostitute, and provide them with counseling. Merlya Sopjan are well Known as "Putri Waria" 2006 (beauty pageant for Queer/Transgender). He/She also run on major election in Malang, East Java several years ago.

Megie and Merlyn told their stories here. they struggle since they were child, friends mocking them, neighbors mocking them, however they have big-heart parents, both parents accept Megie and Merlyn as they are. Since Indonesia (majority) didn't accept the existence of queer, a lot of them were tortured. So, Megie provide others queer with skill and counseling. Sometimes, Megy join with another NGO (non-Government Organization) to help unlucky queer. Meanwhile, Merlyn also fight for the rights of queer and transgender. She published two books yaitu, and several years ago, Merlyn becomes a candidate of Major in Malang.

We may (now) judge them in a negative ways, but don't forget they're just like everybody else. They just like you and me.

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