In a moving ode to using one’s brain, cis, able-bodied white man Evan Richards announced after hearing a perspective informed by a lived experience outside of his own that he had never actually thought about it that way.
“I was talking to my friend Lucy about the attack on trans people in the Republican party right now,” said Evan, a self-identified ally. “I was saying how people should just use whatever bathroom they want, then Lucy pointed out that the fear-mongering around bathrooms isn’t just harmful because it portrays trans women as predators, but that trans women are put in danger when forced to use men’s restrooms.”
“Like, not only are trans women not endangering anyone else, they’re literally the ones at risk,” Evan added in astonishment. “I had never thought of it that way.”
Though Evan is 32 whole years old, up until the last two years, he had never thought of a number of realities, including but not limited to what it would be like for the presence of police to make someone feel unsafe, how the existing frameworks at elite universities set up first-generation students to fail, or why gay men expressing disgust at vaginas is both misogynistic and transphobic.
His more reflective and marginalized friends weighed in on the phenomenon.
“Evan is a really good guy, and I love him,” says Lucy Hirsch. “I also love the fact that he’s so open to changing his mind when he hears new points of view. But knowing that, maybe he should seek out new points of view on his own time instead of just learning from the people who deal with this stuff every day. I don’t know; just a thought!”
But Evan hasn’t quite reached this conclusion for himself.
“I’m very privileged, and people just lead such different lives from me,” says Evan, who considers himself a film buff and has never seen a movie directed by a Black woman. “It’s just unknowable, and I have to accept that.”
“Anyway, sometimes I do learn stuff about this country that just blows my mind, it can be really messed up,” Evan adds. “And I’m glad I have friends who experience that firsthand because they get it. Like, imagine if I tried talking about systematic racism with my dad? Not in this life time!”