The Trap

May 19, 2010

Let me introduce first what a “Trap” is in the genre of Anime (Japanese Animation). A trap is a character in an anime where that characters gender appears to be that of a female but in actuality the character is male. I wanted to see what the general consensus of what people thought about this archetype of character was. To do so I created a thread on a image-board website where all posters were anonymous. I created the thread in the category of anime and just waited for people’s replys and reactions. Since all the posters are anonymous I think it is easier for people to post their honest opinion on controversial subject matters.

Another example of a trap:

At first there were a mixture of negative and positive comments on my post about the picture of the trap I posted. Some people liked it even if it did label them as gay and some people viewed it as quite disgusting. Eventually the thread lead to a more intellectual debate on how gays and other non-hetero are treated in society today, social normality, and questioning the meanings of “accepted” and “hated”.

Here are some quotes that were taken from the thread that show people with varying views on the subject.

“You’re on /a/, the social norm is to be gay for traps. You need not care what other people think, they are the true weirdos.” – Anonymous

“Transsexuals and transgenders are hated by everyone. I’d say that they’re the most hated group of people in the world, second only to pedophiles. Even the GLB or GLBT hate transsexuals. It’s sad, but true.” -Anonymous

“Accepted” is such a vague term. Sure, they are accepted in the entertainment industry but that´s pretty much it. It´s really the same in the whole of South and Northeast Asia. If I remember correctly, some survey in to attitudes in Japan towards homosexuals/transgender/whatever only 20% accepted it. Try being openly homosexual/transgender/whatever in Japan/Thailand/insertxasiancountryhere and I guarantee you wont be “accepted” or even tolerated by the majority.” – Anonymous

The social norm is to be in a hetero relationship and to be anything else is looked down upon. My view on it is that any relationship is fine as long as there is a feeling of joy and love with it. It may sound corny, but if it leads a human being to have happier life then I am not against it. It all depends on the preference of the individual, and to look down upon someone on a simple preference is like outing someone out of group because he or she “preferred” to wear the blue shirt over the red shirt. I may think that the red shirt looks bad, but that is no reason to oppress and ridicule that person for the choice they made. The existence of traps in anime forces people to question their sexuality, hence how the name of “trap” was derived. People who are insecure about their preference of sexuality will view traps as disgusting and wrong, while people who comfortable about who they are will accept it and just laugh at the people who start to feel uncomfortable in the “trap” they just walked into.

Here is the thread.