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Heaven help the woman who swipes right on this asshole of a Dutch entrepreneur who’s trying to legally change his age to have better career and Tinder prospects.
According to the Guardian, 69-year-old “motivational speaker” Emile Ratelband is legally attempting to change his age to “make” himself 20 years younger, belittling transgender people’s experience by saying that his wish to legally change his age is similar to their pursuit to legally change their gender markers on IDs.
“You can change your name. You can change your gender. Why not your age? Nowhere are you so discriminated against as with your age,” Ratelband told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.
Ratelband, who has called himself a “young god,” said that his age doesn’t reflect his “emotional state,” and has trouble finding work and love. He says doctors have told him he has the body of a 45-year-old.
“When I’m 69, I am limited. If I’m 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different car,” Ratelband told the Guardian. “I can take up more work. When I’m on Tinder and it says I’m 69, I don’t get an answer. When I’m 49, with the face I have, I will be in a luxurious position.”
Ratelband’s legal arguments ultimately don’t matter so much in regards to his intentions, because this guy really just wants to be able to mislead and hook up with younger women without having to explain to him that he’s geriatric.
However, let’s break down Ratelband’s false equivalency anyway. For a transgender person, wanting to change their gender marker can validate them in the ways that Ratelband wants to be validated, but for them, this legal change is about so much more than love and finances. It’s about having your humanity recognized and being able to move through the world safely and confidently as a result—something that Ratelband, a white man, has been able to experience for seven fucking decades. Comparing his reasoning for changing his legal age to why transgender people would want to change their gender marker is completely disingenuous, and he needs to be called out for it.
- Trans and nonbinary people explain what gender dysphoria feels like
- Ending violence against trans people starts with respecting them in everyday life
- A guide to understanding cisgender privilege
If he really was a “young god” wise beyond his 50-ish years, he would have figured out that no other man in history has even been stopped from lying about his age on a dating app. Daters beware, swipe left.
H/T Sky News
Samantha Grasso is a former IRL staff writer for the Daily Dot with a reporting emphasis on immigration. Her work has appeared on Los Angeles Magazine, Death And Taxes, Revelist, Texts From Last Night, Austin Monthly, and she has previously contributed to Texas Monthly.