EJ Johnson, one of the stars of E!’s Rich Kids of Beverly Hills, posted a photo to Instagram today that caused quite an uproar. The picture showed him in a little black dress and short black shorts. Johnson can be seen covering his chest the way a woman might in the same outfit. As you can imagine, people had some opinions about his outfit choice.
There was the standard wave of hate from close-minded people who want to make anyone who is different feel bad about their choices. Next there were a lot of comments that showed support for Johnson and fans who shut down the ignorant comments by defending him and his choices. What was worse than the hate, though, were the comments that demanded an answer from Johnson about whether or not he was planning to transition to a woman.
Let’s pretend that this isn’t an incredibly invasive question that shouldn’t be asked of a complete stranger. Let’s also ignore the fact that handling a situation as personal and complicated as transitioning should be done with more understanding. More than all of that, it’s no one’s business. If or when Johnson decides to talk about a hypothetical transition, people can start asking questions. Until that point, it’s intrusive and insensitive to demand answers from someone about their gender identity.
He is completely justified in ignoring the questions.
Johnson, who is the son of basketball legend Magic Johnson, has told E! that he has no plans to transition and his affinity for women’s clothing is a fashion choice more than a gender identity. Which, quite frankly, is good for everyone. We need more examples of people being unapologetically themselves. We need people outside of the “norm” so that it’s not such a big deal and acceptance is our natural reaction.
We should really be thanking Johnson for helping us all grow as people.