It’s a sign of how much journalism has changed over the last few years that people in the public aren’t automatically shamed or labelled by the media (although there’s always the comment trolls to take up the slack).
A case in point is the Steph Kretowicz‘s interview with American musician Shamir Bailey in online magazine Dummy. The focus is on Shamir’s latest album — Ratchet — and moves slowly and respectfully into more personal territory, including, stunningly enough, a question as to what gender pronoun Shamir prefers!
[Q] Do you have a preferred pronoun, do you get annoyed if people refer to you as ‘he’?
Shamir: “I don’t have preferred pronoun, but if there was a preferred one, I probably would be ‘he’.
Shamir goes on to say:
I see myself as just, like, a being, and genderless. I don’t see how I can be part of the gay culture, because I’m assuming gay culture is homosexual men who like other homosexual men – I’ve never been in a serious relationship with a guy, my only serious relationship has been with a female. But I don’t like to identify strictly as a male, [and] I don’t like to identify as a female. I don’t feel tethered to a gender like that, you know?
Maybe we’re seeing a turning point in gender and identity at last? Or perhaps people like Shamir will be outliers like David Bowie, a role model to those of us who feel different?