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Dear Rebecca,

The last couple of weeks I’ve noticed that everyday feminist groups online are freaking out and clutching their pearls, and trying to force a sort of genital distinction between “real” women and “trans” women. Yes this argument has raged since the beginning, but as of late it seems to be popping up everywhere, and smart, well-meaning feminists are getting sucked in to what used to be a radical and out-there fringe.

It seems pretty obvious to me that it’s just a ploy to separate allies, whether because 4chan thinks trans people are lulzworthy, or because some O’Keefe-type idiot is trying to fake something stupid, or because left-wingers are too smart to fall for Infowars-style “FAKE NEWS” so pulling lefties from the center for electoral advantage requires a little more finesse.

In any event, this sudden WE HAVE TO DEBATE TRANS WOMEN’S GENITALIA RIGHT NOW conversation popping up amongst feminists all over the internet is disturbing, especially considering that at this very instant our health care is being ripped away, Russia is all up in our networks, and we’re not even sure if our election was even free and fair, but please gals, can we get down to the important decision of what is the ratio of penis to penis-free years a trans woman must have to get help at a domestic violence shelter? Really? Am I the crazy one for thinking this is a stupid and pointless distraction?

Remember when trolls first started making their profiles a few years ago and it would be something ridiculous like “Polysexual trans woman Native American amputee HIV+ Albino” because that’s what they think gives instant liberal cred? And they were all really dumb and obviously conservatives pretending to be liberals? Well, I think they got better at it, is all I’m saying. They’re still in there, and they are effectively trolling women into repeating anti-trans talking points straight from the religious right. They are appealing to the sad fact that all of us women have been threatened or assaulted by a man. It’s easy for us to relate to, because it’s happened to all of us, and folks have used this fear and compassion for victims to fracture natural allies. So they make trans person accounts that are assholes in feminist groups, and you make feminists accounts that are assholes in trans groups, let it simmer online awhile and then voila! We’ve got a fight!

How do I tell my very smart, very strong, very intelligent feminist friends that they’re being duped? Conversely, AM I GOING CRAZY?

Gentle reader:

Oh wait. This question is that hard. And for anyone who’s ready for a fight, not a dialogue, I imagine I will say 13 things that are all kinds of “problematic.”

I don’t think it’s Russians or Milo Yiannopoulos gettin’ all up in our AOL bulletin boards, though I am conspiracy-susceptible. I think that, tiring of Trump-trauma, we’re going back to our same fights. And women fiiiiight.

Even the women who have everything fight.

(Angry Facebook commenter: HOW DARE YOU SAY WOMEN FIGHT???)

And online? Jesus Christ. Every single one of us has been an asshole online. We have been unkind or intemperate or thirsting to take that day’s issues out on an internet stranger. I do this everyday, because while I am the Mom of You, I am not actually the Blessed Virgin Mary of Internet Perfection. And as a cisgender (for new people, that means someone whose gender identity matches their genitals) middle class white straight feminist, I can check a lot of the boxes for “hitting someone’s last nerve” when I spout off like I know all the answers, which is always, even when I don’t. The trick is to try to know who our actual enemies are, and keep from friendly fire.

The black feminist vs. white feminist fight (which was dismaying) was put on hold for Hillary even though she was a white feminist. (I for one would like to return the favor and back a black woman next. Yes, specifically because she is black. The populists don’t like “identity politics”? How’s a Kamala Harris/Kirsten Gillibrand 2020 ticket suit ya, DICKS?)

But you’re right: The cis vs. trans feminist death-matches are heating up. A group of older feminists I know actually shared a Daily Caller list of supposed “trans attacks” in bathrooms. (They weren’t sharing it ironically.) (And no, they weren’t trans attacks. They were dumb bullshit like people in Targets pretending to be trans so they could come into the women’s room and terrorize people, to prove how trans people would terrorize people.)

Biology is a core of cis feminists’ fight — pushing back on people, male and female, who want to police their bodies and specifically their uteruses and vaginas. So when trans activists say there’s no biological basis for being a woman, or that you can’t call an abortion fundraiser “Night of A Thousand Vaginas” — or the “Vagical Mystery Tour” that Wonkette pal Lizz Winstead is doing right now! — because some women don’t have vaginas, but in that case those particular women don’t need abortions but some men with vaginas do and they weren’t saying it was a fundraiser for “women,” they were literally talking about the reproductive part, and I just thought that whole fight was terrible — that gets cis feminists’ dander up. They have been fighting this particular fight for decades. And some language police are saying their fight doesn’t even exist.

Trans women, on the other hand, are under attack every single time they’re out in public. Sometimes it’s “just” rude sniggers, like the time I was in a women’s restroom with my sister’s drunk friends and one was pointing and cackling and yelling “what is THAT?” at the tall older woman doing nothing but washing her hands. I quietly told her (the friend, not the tall older woman with the good hygiene) that it was inappropriate, if a woman’s in the restroom what she is is a woman, and she needed to stop. All her drunk friends just stared with their mouths open, except one kindergarten teacher nodding furiously. Later, the friend asked another friend of my sister’s what was wrong with me: was I “just a bitch”? “No,” my sister’s other friend answered, and walked away. HA! I am still tickled by that.

Rude sniggers is the least of it. When a trans woman is young and sexy, and a straight guy feels attracted to her, he might show that he is offended by this by killing her.

So trans women, in reaction, can get really militant! They’re reacting to a YOOGE power imbalance — first, the general population only became aware of them really recently in the grand scheme of things, and second, they’re really outnumbered. And they, like every single human being in this room right now, can be super cunty online! (IRONY!) A group of them will go for the jugular when someone is well-meaning but just hasn’t ever met a trans person before, or doesn’t know the minutia of the academic jargon — for a while there, people were getting dragged if they didn’t put a * on “trans*.” (I think the asterisk is optional now? I haven’t seen it lately.) And it creates hard feelings!

When I was in college, my Uncle Johnny came up to Santa Barbara to visit for the day. He had something he wanted to tell me: He was a woman, and was going to start living as one. And my Uncle Johnny became my Aunt Annemarie. When she went to visit my octogenarian grandma and my 50-year-old uncles in Oklahoma — IN OKLAHOMA — they got it right immediately. “This is our sister,” they said, and “this is my daughter.” And everybody IN OKLAHOMA was totally cool with it, despite that Annemarie is a very tall woman herself. What I have just done is considered to be TERRIBLE: I have referred to her by her male name, and as having been a man. But she was a man as far as I knew all those years, and she lived as a man. She had a life with a history to it.

To me, it is totally reasonable to tell that story in that way, and I will probably get dragged senseless for it! Because it is what we — black and white and gay and straight and trans and cis — do. WE FIGHT until we are bloody.

And what we have to do is the opposite of what we’re told in women’s studies departments: We can’t answer genuine questions or simple thoughtlessness from well-meaning people with attacks, telling them it’s not up to us to educate them. We must educate others, as patiently as we can — and it works better if we’re able to do it in private, or at least quietly, instead of calling people out. We’re not always going to be perfect angels, and sometimes our tempers will get the best of us and we’ll LET SOMEONE HAVE IT, and that’s okay, we can forgive ourselves when we do, and probably tell ourselves they deserved a smack. They probably did! Oliver Willis, who is a good guy, who’s been working for civil rights all his adult life, tried to make this point on Twitter once; he had only just recently heard a term for the first time (I think it was “cis”), so if he didn’t know it, maybe respond kindly and educate others who were well-meaning instead of screaming at them.

It did not end well for him. But when I asked my aunt (see above), what she thought about it, she said she had never heard the term either. So that is nuts! (LIKE TESTICLES GET IT?)

The long and long of it is trans women and cis feminists should be allies, and focus fire outwards, not in. But there are some hard things to get past. Biology is a hard one! It has affected women born with vaginas their whole lives, and saying it’s a “construct” sticks in their craws. Caitlyn Jenner getting woman of the year, when she’s an asshole, is another. And cis women walking around like a bunch of fucking mean girls, AND WE DO, while our trans sisters are getting fucking murdered for THEIR biology, is far harder.

When your cis feminist friends are arguing that our trans sisters should not have the privilege of sheltering from domestic violence, THEY ARE WRONG, AND YOU CAN SAY SO AS SHRIEKINGLY AS YOU WANT TO. You are saving lives. Feelings don’t matter. USE AS MANY FUCKING ALL CAPS AS YOU WANT. CALL THEIR SHIT OUT. I guess if you do it calmly, it might be more persuasive, but you do it however the fuck you feel like in the moment.

When it’s not a life and death situation, like shelters, but is more a matter of cis feminists feeling squicky about women with penises or something, I guess you have to come up with a mantra of some sort for your FemChan Internet TERFs. Being both Jewish and Catholic, I find mild guilt (without crossing over into snark or passive-aggression) works best. “I’m very sorry you don’t think I’m as much of a woman as you are. I would like us to work on our common goal of ‘equitable health care for everyone’ (or whatever).”

SOME cis feminists will quietly own their shame and be better in the future. And some will keep being shitty. But we all should be trying to walk in each other’s shoes (mine are ugly middle-aged lady shoes from Costco, because I’m 44 and married and done with that fucking bullshit), take a breath, and calm our tits.

YAY TITS!

Got a question? Send it to rebecca at wonkette dot com. Since we’re ad-free and supported only by Readers Like You, send some money too!

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  • chascates

    If all else fails sisterhood first.

  • TJ Barke

    Pro tip, treat people like people.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      Treat them as you would have them treat you.

      This is really very simple.

      • grindstone

        I’ve heard that somewhere before, haven’t I? Can’t quite put my finger on it.

        • Villago Delenda Est

          Evangelical “Christians” don’t know much about this, themselves.

      • boredcatlady

        I have thought about this.

        I think that a significant portion of people who say that “America is built on Christian principles” are thinking of the golden rule, NOT pastor Gary and purity balls and specific religion, but the vague Christian idea that you should treat people how you would wish to be treated.

        I think when people report on that stat they take it waaay too literally.

        • gingerwentworth

          The idea of christian principles only comes to them when their prejudices are violated.

    • aureolaborealis

      Where’s the fun in that?

    • Gayer Than Thou

      I’m pretty sure you mean “treat people like you like people,” right? Because I think that’s how we do it in ‘Murica.

  • AnnieGetYerFun

    I have not seen this on the Faceplaces. Do I know the wrong feminists?

    • William Cook for now

      No that means you know the right feminists.

    • boredcatlady

      It’s weird, I used to see it only in the rad fems posts, but everyday gals are starting to post things on their walls and in random political groups “I’m a real woman, with a vagina, how come I’m not allowed to talk about it?” and then it just goes down hill from there. Real people, friends, definitely not random jackasses (more than usual, anyway)

      • AnnieGetYerFun

        Wow. It’s actually possible I opted out of all of my feminist groups except for the Muslim ones, and they are SUPER supportive of trans and queer Muslims (finally!).

        • Maggielle

          So it’s Facebook that is a major site of this unpleasantness? Jeez, I am so glad I don’t do Facebook. I honestly didn’t know there was a thing like this that is getting more confrontational. Good fucking grief.

      • kindness

        In all honesty far too many of the wrong people would love to do nothing more than talk to said woman about her vagina. You got to be careful what you bring up among certain folks out there.

  • beingreleased
    • AnnieGetYerFun

      Sigh.

    • Bobathonic

      Sorry, my misanthropometer has been maxed out since last November.

    • janecita

      The saddest part here is that this moran doesn’t know the difference between a Sikh and a Muslim.

      • SterWonk

        Brown is brown.

        (I’m of Indian descent, so I know this first-hand.)

      • Back in the day, I rented an apartment off campus and had an Iranian roommate. This was during that year the Shah was ousted and the US embassy was taken hostage.

        Manouch was walking home from class and found himself surrounded by hostile Real Americans®. “Hey, you damn Iranian, what makes you guys think blah blah more stupid shit blah!”

        “What? No, no – I’m Persian.”

        “Oh. Alright then, carry on.”

        Sigh. Sometimes the stupids cancel out.

        • Natalie Au Natural Hedonist

          I had a college algebra professor who did the same. I think I may have been the only one who knew Iran is modern day Persia.

    • William Cook for now

      Old man stretches legs, brave American shits pants.

    • He just walk to back of the Plane?
      Got enough characters to type the but not enough for walked eh?

    • Not that this bullshit would be okay if the man were a Muslim, but for fuck’s sake, HE’S A SIKH. THEIR TURBANS ARE TOTALLY UNIQUE, NO MUSLIM WEARS A TURBAN LIKE THAT.

    • Kiri the Unicorn

      Fucking idiots. The dude’s not even a Muslim. That’s Sikh headgear.

  • proudgrampa

    Nicely done, Rebecca.

  • Mpeg

    Actually Kamala Harris is part Tamil and the other half Jamaican-American. Appearances about as black as Belafonte-black.. Give me another Barbara Jordan when the wish list beckons skin tone that’s ineffably black!

  • Jenny

    Basically women of all sorts get shit on and the end of the day, that’s what we need to focus on.

  • AnnieGetYerFun

    Here’s another advice topic: is it OK to use the Batman-slaps-Robin image when your father-in-law posts some stupid “not may people will share this” type of message on the Facespace, but it’s in favor of the troops but you love your father-in-law very much but seriously need to school him in how to post?

    • Stulexington

      hmmm, maybe “stop with the passive aggressive shit, what do you think we are Canadian?”

  • MOG253

    Thank you.

  • William Cook for now

    As an AMAB trans person who has read a thousand thinkpieces on the relationship between trans women and cis women, well fucking done.

    This column is off to a kick ass start.

    • rebecca

      what is AMAB?

      • William Cook for now

        Fixed, sorry.

    • h4rr4r

      Can we get some explanations for those who are ignorant of the language used?

      • Google says assigned male at birth
        Not sure if true or if just google however.
        Urban dictionary says “all men are bastards”

        • William Cook for now

          Wow, that’s some new TERFiness.

          TERF: Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist. ‘Feminist’ who believes trans women are men.

          • If I ever meet someone who expresses such TERF sentiments, I’ll point out that the MRA guys would agree with her on this. None of the women I know personally have offered such an opinion.

            As a child (50 years ago) I was raised Southern Baptist (it didn’t take) by folks who were more “God’s wrath” kind of people than “as you treat the least of these, so did you treat me” kind of people.

            They didn’t like Asimov or Heinlein or Dizzy Gillespie or Buddy Holly or Toulouse-Lautrec, so fuck ’em. They didn’t care for blacks or Hispanics or beatniks or gays or uppity women or children having fun. They had all kinds of categories of people to hate, but I didn’t see any reason to. Guess I never have socialized very well.

            They had no compassion nor curiosity, and I don’t know which irritated me more. Nice to meetcha, William for now. Stop by the garden sometime and I’ll offer coffee. Or herb tea, if you prefer.

            Edit for TERF clarity

          • William Cook for now

            Thanks for your kind words. It’s good, too, to hear first hand now and again, that hate isn’t as genetic.

            As for TERFs, well, some people just need a bogeyperson to blame for the injustices in their lives. And some people need a lot of them. It’ll be nice if our species survives long enough to get past this.

            Also too I was just offered tea by someone named Kermit and this tickles me. :)

      • William Cook for now

        Assigned Male At Birth. Totally my bad.

  • Vincent Ricola

    Very well done.

  • Bill D. Burger

    Even to an old breeder like me, it seems clear that we can and should learn to respect the legitimacy of people’s self-identified gender.
    We can open ourselves up to the complexity of gender, going beyond our own limited understanding and lived experiences of it and respect that each person is the authority of his or her own experiences.
    Cis and trans women are and should be allies – a part of the same movement to fight sexism.
    And that’s my 2 cents worth…and now I’ll go stand over there….

  • TundraGrifter

    Isn’t sexual identify rather like racial identify – self-identification is all that matters? Is it really up to someone else to tell you what you are? Or aren’t?

    • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

      That’s the way I see it – if someone tells me they are a woman or a man I will respect that choice and treat them as they wish. It is not my place, my right, or my privilege to judge anyone’s gender identity or expression.

    • willi0000000

      “Is it really up to someone else to tell you what you are? Or aren’t?”

      sometimes, like when someone is, but won’t self identify as, a jackass.

      [ present self not excluded ]

      • TundraGrifter

        I would separate conduct from essential characteristics. Maybe it’s just me.

        I will note that far more people act like a jackass than actually are one.

  • GreenGoldSharpie

    I’ll just add that TERFs are behind a lot of the split between feminist trans women and cis women (Yes, I’m using cis, but not as an insult and instead as a term to differentiate). They are, in every way, an old, cranky, and nasty poison pill, and they are extremely brutal when dealing with trans women in any way. I don’t even traffic in feminist circles, but I’ve had threats to ruin my career based on my stating I’d help a little trans boy in my capacity as an educator.

    It’s extremely ugly.

    At the same time, I’ve never seen trans women go after feminists so I feel less able to comment on this aspect. I’m not denying it happens either, and if it does then those trans women are shitty and should be dealt with harshly. There are so many more important issues at hand.

    Honestly, I feel the trans feminine community, at least as I know it, is heavily lesbian aligned and more concerned with trans healthcare, violence against trans women of color, and discrimination. I actually make it a point to make fun of bros who march into trans spaces and want to debate our identity or bathroom rights. It’s sooooooo dull, and we always hear the same five or six talking points. I have a bookmark folder that deals with all of them. It’s copy pasta at this point.

    But really, the things I listed above that we discuss? These are things we share with other women and other minorities, and we should be working together!

    So, really, I’ll echo the first comment: when in doubt, sisterhood first.

    • William Cook for now

      Cis is not, never has been, and should never be an insult. It’s like heterosexual versus homosexual.

      • OneYieldRegular

        The cis-co kid was is a friend of mine.

      • HazooToo

        I actually have seen it used as an insult. On Tumblr. That’s how I actually first encountered the word. It confused the hell out of me.

        • William Cook for now

          Hurt people do stupid things. The internet lets a lot of hurt people get together and justify eachother’s stupidity.

          • HazooToo

            True. I am glad, now, that I have a word for being comfortable with the gender you were born in that is not something awful like “real” or “normal”.

        • I’ve seen most matter-of-fact characteristics used as insults at some point or other.

    • The Green Bastard

      FUCK TERFS. I’ll shout em down any chance I get. Those bitches won’t define MY feminism.

      -your Cis-ter

    • WomanInThePersistence

      I am in no way defend the TERFs position. Because I think that they are wrong. But I do try to keep in mind that for many women who came out in the 60s, 70s and 80s there simply was no such thing as identifying as trans. That didnt exist. They may have lost family, friends, thier lives. That’s hard.

  • Rick Hill

    It is easy. The answer, as always, is: Be more like Rick. Rick is just Rick. All other things are of lesser importance. If more people were like Rick,there would be fewer problems. Anyway, what was the question?

  • anwisok

    *sits quietly in corner, listening carefully*

    • Canned Covfefe

      Pinky, you’re the best. Love ya.

  • VirginiaLady

    As a mom, all I have to say to a transgender woman is that you made an excellent choice. Carry on.

    • GreenGoldSharpie

      But I still miss pockets. :-(

      • Martini Ambassador 🍸

        You can still have pockets! It takes extra looking, but I have many skirts and dresses bought expressly because of that feature.

        • GreenGoldSharpie

          I know, I know, but how then would I get to make that joke?

          • William Cook for now

            Any time you see a guy complaining about clothing options? :)

          • Martini Ambassador 🍸

            I figured you were probably joshing. But now I want to go shopping with you.

          • William Cook for now

            Yeah what brands?

          • ariel_gee_398

            eShakti dresses and skirts always have pockets, I think. Plus they are customizable for length, sleeve type, neckline, etc.

          • Martini Ambassador 🍸

            Oh yeah, I love them! For casual off-the-rack stuff, the Gap is usually a good choice for the pocket-loving.

            Also, too, if you really love something sans pockets and are a bit crafty, there are often ways to customize: http://a-modicum-of-ingenuity.blogspot.fr/2012/05/tutorial-add-in-seam-pockets-to-dress.html?m=1

          • William Cook for now

            Thanks. Filed away.

          • NastyBossetti

            Modcloth often has dressed with pockets. And if you’re size 14 or up, all of the dresses I’ve bought from City Chic (citychiconline.com) have had pockets.

        • everstar

          I started learning how to sew again because I wanted more pockets.

      • William Cook for now

        If purses weren’t so ripe for theft I’d almost consider it an even trade. Almost.

      • The Green Bastard

        I put pockets on everything I make b/c FUCK not having pockets.

        There’s a cause we can unite on. Pockets for all!

        • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

          But how can you have pockets if you’re not wearing pants and eating the cake that we like.?

          • Marion in Savannah

            I dunno — maybe a kangaroo can offer advice here.

          • The Green Bastard

            Big, lovely dress pockets! No pants! Hell, you don’t have to wear anything under a big dress.

          • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

            That’s a puzzle. Does the Wonkette convention of not wearing pants extend to not wearing skirts?

          • WomanInThePersistence

            Jackets, sweatshirts, ….etc.

          • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

            That’s thinking above the waist!

      • I got pockets and I am A Lady.
        Though I do have one pair of pants with fake pockets and wtf. Fake pockets? why is that a thing?

        • boredcatlady

          Ugh I have those two, constantly trying to put my phone on my hands inside the decorative nonfunctional bullshit

        • SpideySenser

          Fake pockets suck! They even tried to sell us fake/pocketless cargo pants (for my then 8 year old daughter) at the Gap. And they were pastel. Totally useless to a rock and other assorted nature stuff collector. So we marched ourselves straight on over to the boys dept and found real cargo pants, in a righteous heavyweight khaki color material. The girls ones wouldn’t have lasted 3 minutes on my kid. And what fucking genius came up with “pocket less” cargo pants?

          • Well, many houses have fake shutters – they don’t close, and wouldn’t meet if they did. In SF 30 years ago I saw my first pickup trucks with fake roll bars. And our president has gold spray painted crap all over the place. We do fake stuff, because what some stranger thinks when glancing at us is more important than substance.

            And as my wife complains, it’s not as though the pants without pockets are cheaper.

      • NastyBossetti

        Haha! just the other day I put on a pair of shorts with a pocket big enough for my phone. I was so excited I even pointed it out to MrBossetti. He was very thrilled for me.

    • William Cook for now

      Not all trans women transition. :)

      • VirginiaLady

        OK. That’s fine. Still a wonderful choice.

        • William Cook for now

          I, uh… I’m confused as to what choice you’re referring to in that case.

          • VirginiaLady

            Whatever a person chooses to do in regards to that is fine with me. It’s what and how far the person feels is right. It’s not my right to say what’s what to any other person. As long as you don’t try to tell me I have to be someone besides myself, why should I make choices for you. What you identify with is you.

          • William Cook for now

            Oh okay. It seemed like you might have been saying being trans was a choice. I’m glad that was a misinterperetation. :)

          • VirginiaLady

            Oh lordy I ain’t one of those!!

  • mancityRed6

    I’m 43 and the time from when Clinton signed the “don’t ask, don’t tell” to now seems like it’s been a roller coaster. I’m not against, but I’m also not saying I’ve ever made _those_ kind of jokes at all in my life.
    as a CIS white male, I may not understand fully, but I’m not saying no.

    • Sure seems to be a whole lot of internet folks running around telling liberals that they should cut off their own allies these days.
      I hope we don’t let them win.

      • Pre-Existing Condition Jack

        You noticed that was well, huh?

        Divide and conquer. :(

  • FauxAntocles

    Can’t we just be Excellent to one another?

  • Pre-Existing Condition Jack

    Just respect each other. Let other people identify as they wish and respect that. Treat others like you’d want to be treated. It really is that simple.

    • anwisok

      R response: But, how can we feel good about ourselves, if we don’t make someone else feel bad about themselves?

      • Pre-Existing Condition Jack

        Of course. For republicans, it’s not enough for them to succeed, they still need others to fail.

        • snigsy

          That’s how they measure success. It’s always a zero-sum logic with them.

  • UnsaltedSinner
  • GreenGoldSharpie

    Here’s an internal trans joke to make us all feel welcome with a laugh.

    Q: How do you tell a trans woman and a cis woman apart?
    A: Ask them to empty their purses. The one with a Van Houton’s “Pickle in a Pouch” is trans.

    Explanation: In the United States, the most often prescribed anti-androgen (testosterone blocker) is spironolactone, which is a sodium diuretic. Means we crave salt, and a pickle is a good, no cal source of sodium. :-)

    • Martini Ambassador 🍸

      I carry pickles in my purse for completely different reasons ;-)

      • GreenGoldSharpie

        I figured given your name it would be olives. ;-P

      • William Cook for now

        You salty lass.

      • OutOfOrbit

        Do your pickles require batteries?

    • William Cook for now

      God I miss out on so much trans culture, living in the middle of nowhere.

      • GreenGoldSharpie

        I get most of mine from silly subreddits. I never found a place in the local trans group, and most of my friends are actually cis folks.

        • William Cook for now

          Yeah I never got into any online groups. Most of them are focused on experiences that are different from mine.

          • GreenGoldSharpie

            Usually, yup. I tend to like the meme ones or the ones where I can swoop in and offer advice. Teachers are always teachers, as it is.

          • William Cook for now

            For all the wealth of information put out there these past few years, it really is something best passed on person to person. It’s just such a complicated and personal thing.

    • grindstone

      Shit, I’m on spironolactone for a different issue altogether — so THAT’S why I crave potato chips every day.

      • GreenGoldSharpie

        Yup. Now imagine taking 200 mg a day. That’s my dose. :-D

        • grindstone

          Yeah, but your blood pressure must be in the single digits!!

          • GreenGoldSharpie

            Yeah, it’s definitely seen a drop. :-D

          • (((fka_donnie_d)))

            That first Guy Ritchie Holmes movie

            “You pronounced him dead”

            “The man had no pulse”

        • desida

          I was on the stuff for a while for my bad skin, though it didn’t really help. Does it help you on that issue? I am now very curious. Also as to why a testosterone blocker would be prescribed for acne in the first place. Do super testosterone-y dudes get all the zits and I just never noticed before?

          • (((fka_donnie_d)))

            Sure, look at some dudes on roids.

          • everstar

            I seem to recall from reading on the Skincare Addiction reddit that spironolactone works best on hormonal acne, since it can help prevent the premenstrual progesterone spike from wreaking havoc on one’s skin. I started on spironolactone because I used to get awful cystic acne all along my jaw line, and I can’t take estrogen-based birth control.

          • Teenage acne is largely a result of increased testosterone, in all genders.

    • h4rr4r

      Potassium sparing!

      I take it for a different reason.

      • GreenGoldSharpie

        The eternal trans debate: will a banana kill me? ;-)

        • h4rr4r

          I have the opposite problem.

    • Suttree

      When i get a pickle in a pouch it usually means I’m drunk. Those things are delicious!

    • janecita

      That is so interesting! I’m adding it up to my lessons on sexual identities! Thanks:-)

      Edit: I’m a Health Educator.

    • DrBigHead

      As a straight male, is it OK that I laughed?

  • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

    Biology is a hard one! It has affected women born with vaginas their whole lives, and saying it’s a “construct” sticks in their craws.

    I have to wonder if the problem is also a matter of imprecision. Mind, I’m trying to find the right words and if I blunder into offensiveness I apologize as I am trying to form the thoughts as I go. But is there a way that we can try to divide this a little better as the biological side of gender as well as the “construct” of gender as built by societal norms and mores? Can we find a way to say that yes, gender as society sees it is a construct without trodding all over the biology debate?

  • boredcatlady

    ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️
    Thanks mama — the best advice is that which hadn’t occurred to me. We can all be right. And fighting is ok when we’re right, and don’t hate ourselves for being jerks sometimes, but also remember other people are allowed to be jerks sometimes too. (See I had a little of that catholic way back when too)

  • msanthrope

    Thanks for this! As an old white feminist I am trying to remain open to the truths of women of color and trans women and trans women of color and not impose my opinions and prejudices on them.

  • Jenny

    Semi related. I’m at a Subway for lunch. I have to have a code to enter the bathroom….
    Male bathrooms don’t have a code. Wtf

    • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

      A code? Most of the sketchier fast food places just have a buzzer that they have to press to release the magnets.

    • janecita

      Go to the men’s bathroom.

      • I am seriously considering this as a habit anymore.
        Go in, pee, point and snicker at the guys at the urinal, wash hands and leave

        • boredcatlady

          Gross. Too much strange peen. And if anyone touched you, you woulda been “soliciting” by being in there. 😊

    • I’d go in the men’s room then. Just to fuck with people

      • GreenGoldSharpie

        And if anyone questions you just state “Did you assume my gender?”

        • eh, I’ll just hock a loogie and go DID YOU SEE MAH RACK??? HAR HAR HAR
          They won’t know

        • William Cook for now

          How bad is it that those five words in that order mildly trigger my rage, re: rightwing trolls?

      • mancityRed6

        just say “what’s up bro? how about that sportsball?”
        actually, no. don’t say anything. any guy that talks in the bathroom is suspect as being weird.

        • then I am for sure gonna ask em about those Cubs.

          • mancityRed6

            in chitown, that might work.

          • boredcatlady

            Frankly, the Cubs win was what tipped me off that the Illumnati had finally seized control

        • William Cook for now

          I hate how when I used to work dudebro jobs and guys would talk to me in the bathroom. Fuck off! I am trying to pretend none of the other humans in this room exist!

        • marxalot

          Don’t talk in the bathroom! Any bathroom! Ever!
          The worst part of the ladies’ room is that people talk in it. My gawd, they even make eye contact.

          • mancityRed6

            most of the time, guys know better. but you still have that one…

    • Michael Smith

      So is there like a code that only women know?

      I WANT TO KNOW IT! THIS IS REVERSE SEX DISCRIMINATION! TRUMP WON GET OVER IT

      • Jenny

        If there is I don’t know it. The manager walked up and gave me the code. This is a sketchy area of Austin but why only one bathroom?

      • boredcatlady

        Like we’d tell you 😃

    • DrBigHead

      I suspect it is due to a perceived need to “protect” women. Far less likely for someone to be waiting to ambush a guy in the men’s room.

      • boredcatlady

        And reinforces the fear that there is indeed an imminent threat, otherwise, why would they do that?

    • Mpeg

      whereabouts are you?

  • Anna Rompage

    I’ve seen somewhat similar attitudes in the LGBTQ community…

    These are generalizations obviously, but I see a lot of attitudes among gay men that drag is fine & fun, but trans is somehow weird and not quite right.

    And, as someone who has been actively bi-queer since high school, I’ve run into a lot of gay and straight people who don;t understand bi people, and have tried to convince me I’m really just gay, but don’t have the courage to take the plunge and be fully gay…

    The funny thing is I get along better with women, and get much more aroused by a woman’s body, than a man’s… The only thing a man is good for really, is their cock…

    I think what it comes down to is many humans are just a fucked up mess, and there’s a part of our lizard brains, related to tribalism, that somehow needs to find something different with other folks, and take issue with it as a way to feel superior, or better, or more genuine in some sort of fucked up way

    • Stulexington

      I can never understand why people refuse to accept that some people like all the things.

      • alpacapunchbowl

        I still meet people who truly believe deep down that a bi or queer partner is more likely to cheat on you.
        That has nothing to do with anything!!

        • Anna Rompage

          It really doesn’t, and when I’m craving man bits, my sweetie is more than happy to strap it on, and fuck me till my hearts content, which is more than I say say for most of the men I’ve been with…

          • William Cook for now

            Rubber penises are at the very least more reliable than their counterparts.

    • Shoulda scrolled down a bit

    • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

      I’ve had Cisgender Gay males say worse things to me online than any other group. Luckily they were only a minority, but for 6 months after I came out Bi and Trans* I avoided Gays and Lesbians completely, thinking they were all going to be like the online haters I had encountered.

    • chortlingdingo

      There’s a lot of ugly debate about asexual/aromantic people in the LBGT+ community too. Online, I’ve been accusing of wanting to be a special snowflake, that I’m sick and need help, that I’d feel differently if I just had sex, and that I don’t experience discrimination from the general population in the same way that other queer people do. In person, I’ve been told that I’m untrustworthy for not desiring sex (because I’m hiding something somehow??) and been invalidated by an ally member of my university’s LBGTA group because “we use A for allies.” I’m more careful about who I come out to, now. I’m certain that my parents would think that there was something wrong with my hormones, so I haven’t told them either.

      People inside the community are just as bad with narrow labels and tribalism than people outside the community. I wish that people would understand that it’s not an oppression competition.

      • Amy!

        I wish that people would understand that it’s not an oppression competition.

        QFT.

      • Resistance Fighter Puipui

        It drives me absolute batshit when people try to claim that the “A” is for “allies”. No! No, it is not! You do not get a letter, straight people! Being friendly doesn’t make you one of us, no matter how much you insist that it should! No letter for you!

    • Natalie

      I can identify with being Bi in high school back in the late 70’s, in rural Maine. The biggest insult you had was to call someone “queer”. I certainly never connected the word with myself. It took me until my thirties before I realized I love men as friends and as partners, but I could not help but be sexually attracted to women even more. It is like part of me is not complete without a girlfriend with benefits.
      I have always adored gay men but gay women don’t like that I love men too. It is like I am a traitor or something. I have had the same you’re really gay talk too from the lesbians, but I know I am truly bi, I am not attracted to someone for their gender, I am attracted to them as an individual. Fortunately I found a wonderful man who understands my needs and doesn’t have a problem with it. (I’ve learned to be really honest about it to avoid issues later.) I consider that because society would not consider me “normal” I will support others in their needs as well. We all deserve to be happy.

  • Marion in Savannah

    As a Very Old cisgender broad let me just say that I DON’T GET IT. The first trans woman I knew I first met as a gentle young man called “Cloud.” We kept in touch, and several years later she came to my wedding (this will be 39 years ago come October) as a lovely young woman called “Cloudia.” Nobody made a fuss. What the fuck is wrong with people? All I know is that Cloudia was a much happier person than Cloud ever was, and isn’t that all that’s really important?

    • It’s a form of tribalism. It is not about people being happy, it is about infringing on my territory as I perceive it to be.

      • Marion in Savannah

        Gah… Now we’re into head/desk territory.

      • William Cook for now

        Like, as a random example, the entire USA as a theocratic Christian state.

        • That’s a big one yes.
          Or, how everything in my state is better than anything in yours (unless you are from PA. Very self effacing in PA, except Pittsburgh but only about their sportsball).
          Or my town vs your town, or rural vs city. Gay V straight, liberal v conservative. Black/Brown/Jew vs white. Whatever your particular poison.
          It is all tribalism used as part of prison mentality to keep us fighting each other so we don’t gang up and get the sonsofbitches who put us here.

          • John Resistant Tovarich Smith

            This ^^^!

    • marxalot

      I actually do get it, in a lot of ways. There’s a strain of essentialist feminism, or womanism, which is predicated on ovaries+uterus+oppression = woman; that kinda trainwrecks into a not unjustified hostility toward anything with a dick, compounded by the difference in lived experience and privilege (raised “as a man” in this culture vs “as a woman”). It gets ugly.

      • I should think that women, of all people, having been through what they have been through, would get this the most. Unless they agree with the right that a woman is only worth her baby making bits?

        • Maggielle

          I just cannot imagine aligning myself with a group that would be okay with me opening the door to, say, Sarah Huckabee Sanders (bless her heart), and then shutting the door on Laverne Cox. No. Both deserve my basic respect as human beans. But Laverne is gonna be my sister. Was she born with a vagina? I don’t care. Nobody was born with my vagina but me, so no one else has my exact experience with gender, so let’s just talk to each other. Or let each other be, if that’s what each of us wants.

          I never used my baby making bits to make a baby. Am I less of a woman than Michelle Obama or Kellyanne Conway? Duh: objection – irrelevant. I am a woman, and I’m always going to say hello to other women, and I will always cheerfully pass TP to the person in the next stall if she needs it, whether it’s Kellyanne or Laverne.

          As to our individual histories and our individual past actions: we can talk (or not), atone, forgive, or confront…without hostility, if we choose to. Life is too damn short.

          I think I am tired now. It’s just why, with apartment buildings burning, storm surges every day, healthcare falling apart, sad people overdosing, sick people unable to obtain mercy…why does there always seem to be someone urging me to go ahead and gnaw off my own foot to show my allegiance? Now I am going away. Back later.

      • I kind of get it…there was something along these lines shown in the Amazon series, Transparent. Where the trans character was reacted to with hostility by several older lesbian activists at a retreat for women because before he decided to transition, he was a male professor who voted repeatedly against giving tenure to female professors (one of whom was in attendance at the retreat). The feminists viewpoint was although the trans was suffering from bigotry now, she had benefited from male privilege for many decades whereas those women had to fight their whole lives against it. And I don’t think the trans character ever acknowledged or accepted that he was part of and benefited from the good ol boy club to which she had belonged. If she had acknowledged that and met them half way it might of have been okay….then again, I understand the trans viewpoint. She was certainly being mistreated as a woman in the present. We all just need to take a deep breath and remember we’re all on the same side.

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson

    How’s a Kamala Harris/Kirsten Gillibrand 2020 ticket suit ya

    http://www.glitters123.com/glitter_graphics/Attitude/Attitude-Glitters-33.gif

    • boredcatlady

      Suits me like a pantsuit!

  • Oblios_Cap

    I’m going to start ending all of my work memos with “YAY TITS!”.

    • Courser_Resistance

      Sounds like a plan. Let me know how that works out for ya!

      … you might try marketing that one to the Komen foundation. Or Planned Parenthood maybe?

      • Oblios_Cap

        You should see the looks I get from other pickup truck drivers when they see my “I stand with Planned Parenthood” sticker (got it when I sent my last donation) on my tailgate. Especially the assholes with Trump stickers. No one has said anything yet.

        • BearDeLaOursistance

          Saw an “I don’t even DRIVE straight” sticker on a pickup at a customer’s house in fifth-ring suburbia. Smashing stereotypes FTW!!eleventy-one

  • canes_pugnaces

    Thank you for this. I, a parent of a teen in NYC who is moving into the seventh ring of gender identity hell, have been struggling with these questions. All of them. On the days I don’t want to put my head in a vice because I’m clearly out of my league, I remind myself: we’re all fucking people. And maybe that’s enough. Trump, et al, notwithstanding.

    • everstar

      Sending positive thoughts towards you and your teen, if you don’t mind?

      • canes_pugnaces

        No I don’t. I thank you.

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson

    The long and long of it is trans women and cis feminists should be allies

    Done, at least on my part. Fuck haters of any political persuasion with a chainsaw of united real progressives FFS.

  • marxalot

    There is, as our Editrix points out, a generational divide going on here too. I’m not a Kid anymore, but nor am I an Old, but lemme tell ya. I sure as fuck felt old when I had to patiently explain to a few of them that no, drag isn’t transmisogyny it’s performative play, and no, “Walk on the Wild Side” by Lou Reed isn’t fucking transphobic.
    The Kids, raised in the internets and hep to the latest jive, often have already decided the Correct Language well before any of the rest of us have heard it, but totally lack a grasp their own history. In part, that’s because our history has been destroyed, erased, hidden, and plastered over, so no wonder. But what happens is that they expect people (even those in the community, like the Editrix’s aunt) to use the words and conventions they have adopted, and apply them retroactively to wildly different contexts.
    But, shit, I didn’t even know I had options until I was already through puberty part one, so the “vocabulary” problem is more complex even than that.
    Plainly, there needs to be a lot of cross-teaching within the community as well as outside of it. (Me, I use t* or trans* bc one, I am a stats nerd and it pleases me, and two, I fall into the troublesome category of “nonbinary” so I like the implied wildcard search there at the end, encompassing more than “man” or “woman” as a valid endpoint.)

    • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

      This seems to be a common problem in a lot of liberal discussion circles – the older among us know the history and the context, the yutes are trying to frame the language, and we end up talking past each other more than talking to each other.

    • GreenGoldSharpie

      A lot of this is just sort of letting things go. Drag makes me pretty uncomfortable as a trans woman, but I also know that isn’t the intention and they’re not trivializing my experience.

      Like you said, talking about it matters, but so is the notion that some things don’t really matter in the grand scheme of things.

      • marxalot

        Shon Faye distilled the difference fairly clearly in a post: drag is a game. It is a form of expressive play with no rules and no consequences. Being a trans woman is, essentially, the opposite.
        And yeah, geeze, but we need to not flip shit about stuff that doesn’t matter.

      • William Cook for now

        Accept everyone is problematic to a degree. Like my trans friend who still does ‘drag’ as their true gender. Like, girl you are confused but I do not have the answers for you so good luck.

      • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

        I haven’t met any Drag performers, like at all. I *think* they are having fun in themselves, and it’s not meant to be about anything about me, I hope so anyway.

    • William Cook for now

      I think that a lot of it is how fast the cover blew off trans issues. It’s a whole mess od worms that society has deliberately avoided integrating, and now we have to try and plug everything in all at once. We barely had a coherent culture among ourselves, so figuring it out while everyone else demands perfect answers was always gonna be a socio-political clusterfuck. It already seems to be settling down into accepted standards and definitions.

    • Gayer Than Thou

      I think – but someone will surely correct me if I’m wrong – that The Kids also have not had the experience that inevitably comes to us all sooner or later: you are trying to do and say and think the right things, and you aren’t. Or you were, but you aren’t anymore. One grows up and reflects on one’s intentions, one’s actions, and one’s effect in the world, and one changes. But it isn’t always the easiest, most painless, or most graceful thing to do. It does, however, give one a smidgen of compassion for people are trying to be better people.

      • SadDemInTex

        What you write is just simple truth for humans. I like to think we can grow and change and make our corner of the world better.

  • Courser_Resistance

    I can’t really remember when I decided that obsessing about other women’s, cis or trans, genitals was just plain icky. I mean, did I really want to spend a LOT of brain-space on that conundrum?

    Fuck no, to me it feels creepy if it even broaches ‘I wonder…’ stage and I shut that shit down. If you present to me as a woman, I’ll assume you are a woman.

    I have to confess that I got some shock therapy when introduced to a couple of now-mutual friends. These particularly ladies dress as women and use makeup and that’s about the extent of it. They’re rather unfortunate looking to begin with so I decided I was done caring about it.

    • everstar

      That’s what I’ve never understood about bathroom laws. How am I supposed to police whether the lady in the next stall is “supposed” to be there? Stick my head under the partition?

      • Swampgas_Man

        So far as I can tell, this only applies to “ugly” women. If you can pass, the bigots have no problem. All they ever mention is “big, hairy ugly guys dressed as women.” As usual, the “pretty” have nothing to fear.

        • BearDeLaOursistance

          Welp… Guess my drag persona, All-Beef Patty, is SOL.

  • beingreleased

    I’ve posted this article before, but it is so good I’ll post it again.
    Sex redefined. It is from Nature, one of the top scientific journals. The one line summary is: The idea of two sexes is simplistic. Biologists now think there is a wider spectrum than that.

    Here’s the concluding paragraph.

    So if the law requires that a person is male or female, should that sex be assigned by anatomy, hormones, cells or chromosomes, and what should be done if they clash? “My feeling is that since there is not one biological parameter that takes over every other parameter, at the end of the day, gender identity seems to be the most reasonable parameter,” says Vilain. In other words, if you want to know whether someone is male or female, it may be best just to ask.

    The article may be behind a paywall. If it is, I’ll try to figure out some way to get it to you if you ask.

    • HazooToo

      Right clicking the link and opening in a new private window seems to work.

    • Lance Thrustwell

      It’s like I told my semi-bigoted brother-in-law once; There are hundreds of genetic variations you recognize and have no problem believing are “natural”: everything from left-handedness to color blindness to perfect pitch. And you can’t believe that gays or transgenders are telling the truth when they say they’ve always felt like this?*

      *For the record, I don’t think it matters whether someone considers their sexual identity to be a ‘choice’ or inborn. People can be whatever they want to be, period. I was just trying to make a common-sense argument he could relate to.

    • EvilHRLady

      Ooh thank you! I need to book mark this for the next time I see a RWNJ on facespace declare that there are only two genders.

      • William Cook for now

        It’s a good summary of the ‘Lol, your line is imaginary dear Horatio’ argument.

  • Zippy W Pinhead

    This seems, ummm, sensible? Well thought and reasoned? Not sure what the hubbub here is Trix, but what you wrote makes perfect sense to me.

    Also too, what’s up with the asterisk after trans*?

    Because nobody told me we had to include footnotes in our comments, which are not even allowed. Screw you, you’re not the boss of me, I’m not in college anymore and therefore… what were we talking about again?

    • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

      Squirrel migration patterns. Or maybe tits.

      • “Tits!!!!” He proclaimed jumping into his supped up 74 Chevy Nova, light metallic blue, and pushing the pedal to the floor drove off so rapidly that the slam of the door took five minutes to sound.

      • alpacapunchbowl

        Yay, tits!

    • Crystalclear12

      Post-college asterisk rage?

      • Zippy W Pinhead

        Just don’t touch my ellipses or I’ll cut a bitch…

        • Spotts1701, Resistance Pilot

          What are your feelings about interrobangs?

    • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

      The asterix is a signifier that some of us use to indicate we are in Transition.

      • Zippy W Pinhead

        Cool, that was kinda my snarky way of asking what it signified.

        • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

          Sure, no prob. :) I don’t always remember to use it when I type, and I’m not offended if someone else uses it, or not, or if someone asks.

          • Swampgas_Man

            I was going to inject myself into this conversation, but I have too good an asterisk.

          • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

            xD

      • marxalot

        Or that there are multiple endpoints for the word. It’s a handy asterisk!

  • Crystalclear12

    So, right into the deep end?
    Go big or go home.

    • whut?

      • Crystalclear12

        Nice complicated issue. Something there is no easy answers for.
        But I think it was handled well.

        • I think I broked my brain. Explains a lot really. Danke ^.^

        • William Cook for now

          Respect eachother and don’t second guess or police eachother’s identities.

          What was that about no easy answers?

          • Crystalclear12

            Human nature.
            Answer is easy, implementation is not.

  • PixieThis

    I work in San Francisco, but even here there’s a lot of confusion/anger/fear/curiosity about Cis/Trans/Cross/everything-in-between. At my last job, an email went out reminding everyone of the laws in place regarding these situations. This caused a little anxiety for an older woman working in 1 of the corporate departments. She felt she could ask me about it and I was honest and explained the differences between the biology we are born with vs. the sex we feel we truly are (I’m simplifying here). If you tell me you’re a woman, you’re a woman and I don’t think about it any further.

    But I grew up with it and I know it’s hard for different generations or even based on how you were raised. So I asked her if she had any concerns about anyone in particular. She said “No, but I heard a rumor that we have “one” on this floor” We had a lot of new hires and temps at the time. So I told her not to worry, but I would always be happy to talk to her about it more. I give her points for being open minded enough to hear me out and to at least try to understand.

    She was 68 years old and this was a whole new world. I wouldn’t for the life of me have told her that Yes! there was someone on her floor and I knew who it was because a) it’s none of anyone’s business and b) I was trying to minimize a potential problem.

    Maybe if we remembered we’re all humans and we have more in common that we have differences….but we’ll get there someday.

  • Persistent Demme

    I don’t understand this “identity politics” thing.
    I’ve looked it up, but I don’t understand.
    Is good or bad?
    What does it mean in the context of Hillary or the Dems?
    In other words: I haz a confuz.

    • Identity politics is the new talking point for ever mentioning race, religion, gender, or other social issues. Unless you are a conservative blasting on a minority population. Then it is ok.
      We are Not Allowed to talk identity politics anymore because the GOP says so, and to “reach them” and take their voters, the left has to do what the GOP says.

      • sw19covfefe

        See also “virtue signalling”

        *rolls eyes*

    • Lance Thrustwell

      Supposedly, the Left uses “identity politics” as a tool to encourage people feel isolated, helpless and under attack by virtue of their minority identity, so that they turn to Big Government to protect them and solve their special problems instead of seeing themselves as Americans first and just cooperating on a local level.

  • alpacapunchbowl

    I try to be a good ally, I know I fuck up sometimes.
    Honestly I was (and continue to be) appalled when I first came across the anti-trans strain among certain groups of feminists. Hell, I’m a rape survivor (just like most women, unfortunately) but I realize the penis is not the enemy. Growing up with the privilege of experiencing the world as a male? Sure, that’s not my experience as a mostly hetero cis-woman, but that doesn’t negate someone’s experience navigating the world as transgender.
    Side note- I am curious about this just because I am a language nerd. What is the origin of “cisgender”, like in an etymological sense?

    • I am confused by why they thing growing up male would be a privilege to someone who does not identify as male. To me, that would be a horrible thing to have to live through, like a life long traumatic stress.

      • William Cook for now

        I have male presenting privilege but not cis-privilege. I deal with feeling like my body is a lie, but that same body makes me more likely to be intellectually respected, or at keast heard, and makes it safe for me to walk alone at nigbt.

      • alpacapunchbowl

        I can see it as being privileged in the sense of the way *others* treat you. That however obviously has little to nothing to do with how one internally processes their experiences.
        Plus, I can imagine that could make things even harder from a psychological perspective, moving through the world as a man but knowing that you’re a woman- a sense of being an imposter, maybe. Not that it should be that way, but I can imagine someone could struggle with the dichotomy.

      • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

        In my experience, my discomfort and self-loathing for my body always marked me as “different” and out for Bullying.

        I do not react well to TERFs, but rather than continue to blow my top, I just Block TERF Bitches, one-and-done. Life is too short to educate assholes.

        • William Cook for now

          Oh yeah I got bullied all to fuck before I learned to pass as male. :(

          I’m sorry you didn’t have my luck/capacity for self-delusion.

          • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

            I’m sorry for your pain, too. Things are Better Now. :)

          • William Cook for now

            Yes, for me too. Even if I never go through that door, I’m happier where I am, and thrilled for everyone who’s now finding their place on the other side. Just thinking of all the kids who won’t have their bodies disfigured by the wrong puberty warms my heart.

          • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

            ~hugs~ I hope you continue to find the answers that work for you.

            One of the real joys in my life is the younger Transwoman I call Baby Girl. She is my daughter in every was save Blood, and she’s having a better life, Transitioning now at the age where I was rejected and told it was “in my head”, so I know I made a real difference for her.

          • William Cook for now

            That’s so awesome. I can’t imagine saying this in any other context but the kids are why I fight. My culture fucked me up and it took years to dig out all the internalized transphobia. I didn’t even get ‘All in your head’ I just got a blank look and then a different subject. From professionals! I’m glad you two have each other.

          • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

            Thank you, she is my life.

            Yeah, one thing is that folks like you and me are toughened enough to take some heat off the kids.

          • everstar

            I’m so sorry. May I offer you a cyber-hug?

          • sw19covfefe
      • Amy!

        That’s actually kind of a difficult question. I’m not gonna even try to answer it for anyone but me.

        I did have male privilege (and white male at that) prior to transition. I was aware of the race privilege (and did what I could to undermine it), but much less so of the male privilege, and even made some boneheaded juvenile sorts of comments about how women had power (from being the pursued rather than required to pursue) and greater choice (in clothing choices, yadda yadda).

        I can’t say that the loss of privilege post-transition was due to being perceived/accepted as a woman, or if it was because I was trans, but it was (as I’m sure it is to AFAB people from before kindergarten) fucking blindingly obvious that what I no longer had was male privilege.

        On the other hand, I’d rather lack that privilege than live with the self-hatred that was my constant companion up the point of transition. Sure, I got to slide on lots of stuff when I was playing the boy, but I hated my fucking life (and loathed myself for being unnatural and creepy). I may catch hell from the haters now, but …

        I’m not one of them. Worth it.

        I think I’d have preferred to have been AFAB, but what the hell can I really know about that? Different path to womanhood, for me, with interesting lessons. Life’s good (now … I didn’t used to say, or even think that).

        • rebecca

          (AFAB: assigned female at birth, as we learned below, for people wondering)

          • Amy!

            Oops! Sorry, I should have given the expansion, but was reading through in order and overlooked it. My bad.

            I only encountered it some time after the marriage equality case passed the supreme court, and had to look it up. I was charmed. The history of terms (like the use of ‘cis’ rather than ‘normal’ or ‘regular’ as a contrast to ‘trans’) is interesting. In the nearly-pre-internet days (mailing lists and newsgroups), the commonest abbreviation was ‘GG’, for ‘genetic girl’. I hope that I don’t have to point out how problematic that was, on multiple grounds? ‘Born woman’, ‘born female’ ‘natal woman’ were attempts to address it, but also problematic (they all suggest that trans-ness is something that happens some time later, and also apply an adult term, Trudeau-like, to an infant).

            We weren’t particularly apt to use the terms the doctors preferred, either. For one thing, at least as late as 2004, the style guides for (maybe only some?) medical publications discussing transexual women insisted that the correct term was ‘transsexual male’, which is as invalidating as it’s possible to be, while hiding behind a diploma and a stance of authority. Not sure what they use now.

            AFAB/AMAB seem to actually work pretty well. When a baby’s born, the doctor (in my era, anyway) picks it up, slaps its butt, and announces “it’s a [girl/boy]!” That’s the source of the gender marker that at first couldn’t be changed, and later could only be changed with a letter from a surgeon announcing that the mistake had been corrected medically (that’s changed recently too, in places). Literally: the doctor, by visual inspection of external primary sexual characteristics assigns a sex/gender, at birth, usually with no other tests (to be fair: also usually correctly). Assigned male at birth/assigned femaie at birth is as neutral and descriptive as we’ve managed to get, although even so, there are folks indignant “that we can’t call a girl a girl and a boy a boy!”

          • brittany

            Ontario is working on issueing gender on birth certificates that hold up in other jurisdictions by 2018…the facebook comment sections were horrifying. People made it sound like they were stripping everyone’s gender, or some horribly atrocious thing that was happening to them. It made no fucking sense. All the law does is allow people who are non-binary to finally have a birth certificate that doesn’t force them into legally identifying themselves as one of two genders, and change parents choices from just male and female to male, female, or gender neutral. (Ontario already offers gender-neutral options for drivers’ licenses and health cards but not for birth certificates, which causes a lot of problems when filling out other legal documents)

          • Amy!

            Never read the comments!

            Fortunately, Wonkette doesn’t allow comments.

    • Pax Americana Per Ars Smith

      1 and 3 seem to apply here. From Latin, of course.

      http://www.dictionary.com/browse/cis-

      • alpacapunchbowl

        Thanks!

  • SJTowne

    Okay, so what about if you have no problem sharing public restrooms with Transwomen, and absolutely would shout a motherfucker down for saying they should be denied shelter from domestic violence like ALL women should, but literally EVERY time you even mention anything related to hiw your own experience as a woman has been at all affected by having a vagina and uterus you are immediately shouted down as a “TERF” and shut out of the conversation? Because that’s been my experience. Repeatedly online. And I refuse to deny my own truth or silence it because someone else feels threatened by me sharing MY experience of being born with female sex organs and being socialized accordingly in a whole host of fucked-up ways. I should be able to talk about that and not be immediately demonized.

    • Lance Thrustwell

      What’s a TERF?

      • SJTowne

        Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist…which I’m not. But I’m always told i am and usually blocked from groups.

        • SJTowne

          For talking about MY vagina or uterus…cuz thats not allowed anymore in liberal feminist discussions anymore. 😕

          • Lance Thrustwell

            How does the subject of your vagina or uterus come up in an online trans discussion forum?

          • SJTowne

            This has been in LibFem pages in general, and the subject of sex organs and their relevance to feminist issues like reproductive choice and other experience within the medical community is pretty relevant to feminism. Or should be. But the current trend is to tell CIS women that even referring to their own body parts as female is somehow a hostile act against Transwomen. It happens ALL over LibFem pages now.

          • William Cook for now

            Maybe the groups you were a part of, but don’t think they represent all of us. I hope you find a better froup of people.

    • I think Becca answered that in her we should talk to each other and educate each other patiently bit. This would certainly apply there I think. Sorry that happened to you :hugs:

    • rebecca

      that was happening a LOT during the “night of a thousand vaginas” thing. I am with you, and i think those people are wrong, and they think we are wrong. It got very Re-Education Camp, and a lot of people ended up apologizing. I didn’t. The trick is to not respond to aggression by BECOMING a TERF out of assholishness in return.

    • William Cook for now

      I’m sorry there are so many assholes out there who think being trans gives them the right to be scorched earth militant about anything that doesn’t exactly fit their worldview.

      Assholes on every side.

      • BearDeLaOursistance

        Indeed. As so well-articulated by you, Editrix, and all the tits who walked in with her!

        • William Cook for now

          Aww, I could never put it into words as well as our Editrix, but thank you!

      • HorseChestnut

        As a dear old friend once told me: fundies are everywhere.

  • rosenbomb

    For anyone who likes podcasts, I really enjoyed this interview with trans prison guard Mandi Hauwert. I love hearing stories from people who are different than me (cis white woman). Interestingly, Mandi has gotten a lot of pushback from within the trans community because she’s employed by a system that ignores, abuses & kills trans people, but she has hope of changing the system from within. There are fractures everywhere.

    http://www.wnyc.org/story/mandi-hauwert-death-sex-money

  • (((fka_donnie_d)))

    Um, honest question. Why doesn’t “sex organs are biological, gender is a construct” work here?

    • Anna Rompage

      Most Americans are too fucking stupid to understand, much less question what a social construct is…

      • (((fka_donnie_d)))

        Ooo look another “problem” created by our shite education system, yay!

        • Anna Rompage

          When you grow up in a culture and are programmed as to “what the norm is”, it’s easy to just accept it as what reality is for everyone, and not really question “why”…

      • (((fka_donnie_d)))

        But, I think pretty safe to say that people having this debate are fairly well educated, no?

        • Anna Rompage

          In this forum, most certainly…

          I guess I grew up in a time when being fully out and identifying as being queer, was asking for a shit heap of trouble from most…

          Thankfully our culture has evolved immensely since those dark days, and we still have a terribly long way to go…

    • Bill Hardy

      That is brilliant in its simplicity.

  • Anna Rompage

    I’m old enough to remember when the nomenclature was just gay, lesbian & transvestites, or as most Americans referred to us back in those days as fags, dykes, and trannys…

    Then we had LGBT, which eventually evolved into LGBTQ….

    And to think today we have QUILTBAG, the acronym of
    Queer/Questioning, Undecided, Intersex, Lesbian, Trans
    (Transgender/Transsexual), Bisexual, Asexual, and/or Gay/Genderqueer

    • (((fka_donnie_d)))

      Mmm, now I want a quiltbag

    • Lance Thrustwell

      QUILTBAG! I love it. Warm & colorful.

    • marxalot

      I use QUILTBAG because: it’s a word you can say!
      Unless I’m doing the flyers for the June and October potlocks, in which case it’s an LGTBBQ

    • SisterArtemis

      QUILTBAG!!!! so very good, and the BEST acronyms are words, not the raspberry sounds so many strings of initials make.
      https://youtu.be/qTvhKZHAP8U?t=39s

    • sw19covfefe

      I’ve been calling them/us Alphabetties for a number of years, but it never really caught on.

      • sw19covfefe

        I like QUILTBAG tho. :)

    • SisterArtemis

      I’m old enough to remember when it was (a) an issue to include lesbian in the “Gay Support Center” nomenclature, and (b) when it was a BIG issue to add the “b.” We hadn’t gotten to the t’s and q’s yet.

      I personally would like Queer to be the all-encompassing word for every one who’s not a straight-cis type of person. But my lobbying efforts are usually met only with loving snickers and rolls of eyes.

      • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

        I like “Queer” myself. I learned from a Girlfriend that we had taken that word back, when I grew up it was a slur, so it feels good to own it.

        • Anna Rompage

          Exactly!

        • SisterArtemis

          Plus, it makes me think of “queer as a 3 dollar bill” (or $2; YMMV) which is kind of a happy thought, for some reason

          • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

            xD I like that too!

      • Anna Rompage

        Honestly, from the time & culture I grew up in, I always use the term “queer” as a general term that encompasses everyone in the community

      • boredcatlady

        I don’t understand the Q, if it means Queer, how is that different from LBG? Does it mean questioning? Is questioning a sexual identity? I honestly don’t understand.

        • Resistance Fighter Puipui

          “Queer” is more inclusive, in that it can cover all the things that “LGBT” leaves out.

          If you wanted to cover all the things that “queer” covers in an acronym (gay, lesbian, bi, trans, pansexual, asexual, aromantic, grey gender, agender, intersex, genderfluid, omnisexual, multisexual, polysexual, polyamorous, etc etc etc.) then you would have too many letters to fit on a shirt.

          • boredcatlady

            Thank you! And now I gotta spend some time with google. I left San Francisco in 2001 so if its a thing since then I probably don’t know it.

          • boredcatlady

            Thank you so much…the comments in here are making me more smarter.

      • Resistance Fighter Puipui

        “Queer” is my preferred umbrella term, too. It’s just so much easier than trying to cover all the letters without leaving anyone out.

    • William Cook for now

      Personally, I think it’s starting to run counter to the message. With a multi-dimensional rainbow of possible human identities, listing all of them is impractical and leaving some out is u fair.

      I prefer things along the lines of GSDA, or Gender and Sexuality Diversity Alliance.

      • Anna Rompage

        Maybe we should just be referred to as the ‘Alphabet Gang”!

        • Werewolf

          Alphabet soup?

        • BearDeLaOursistance

          …that couldn’t shoot straight! :-D

    • everstar

      In a “funny/not funny” story, I was blogging the other day about LGBTQ representation on Star Trek when it occurred to me that Q takes on a whole new meaning in that fandom. “Lesbians, gay people, trans people, and… John de Lancie?”

      • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

        I like that. And Q was so slashy with Picard. xD

      • William Cook for now

        You should see Continuum Pride. Party goes on forever.

      • theblackdog

        Side Note: John de Lancie is a great person to talk to at cons.

  • Ilgattomorte

    I bristle at the labeling in general. I’m of the “If they walk like a duck – they are a duck” point of view. I pretty much try to think of people as who the identify themselves to be. So, all women are women, albeit some are a little newer at it, that’s all. Beyond that, the question is: Are you a person?

    This is a much more important question. Not all people are persons, many are douchebags. That is the distinction that should determine one’s place in society.

  • C4TWOMAN


    And online? Jesus Christ. Every single one of us has been an asshole online.

    I’m not. I’ve only ever been a perfect angel.
    *shifty eyes*

    Seriously tho, good rant/advice/soapbox thing. Echoes many of my thoughts, especially the genital obsession and priorities like saving lives over feelings. Not that women’s feeling uncertain about allowing trans-women access to services isn’t valid, but that trans women’s personal safety is more important. Like duh.

    Also too, “women’s studies” classes are very YMMV, from the truly informative teachers who want to integrate women’s experiences in what we call history,–because history includes everybody–to persons who have an ego boosting mission and confuse ineffectual outrage with encouraging real change.

    • Sekhmet1

      Absolutely. A woman whose views I otherwise respect was arguing strenuously that allowing trans women to use women’s changing rooms might hypothetically be triggering for a hypothetical rape survivor if the rape survivor hypothetically got a glance at the trans woman’s penis. I responded that, leaving aside the fact that most people – rape survivors included – would be too focused on what they’re doing to go round inspecting other people’s genitals, the decidedly non-hypothetical risk to the trans woman’s physical safety if she’s forced to use men’s facilities outweighs the less likely risk of upsetting someone. And surely that risk could be ameliorated by making it clear to people that this is a trans-inclusive space where your gender identity, not your genitalia, determines which facilities you use?

    • Confessions of a thot above. You loved the movie and book “50 Shades Of Grey”, right?

    • Hello, (((Rebecca))). How are you on sabbath’s eve?

  • desida

    SOME PEOPLE DON’T HAVE TITS HOW VERY DARE YOU

    Just frontin’, this letter and its response were ace. <3

    • Karen Marie

      I love Catherine Tate so much.

    • HorseChestnut

      I ain’t bovvered.

  • PersianOregano

    Am I the only one who has unfortunate organic chemistry flashbacks when the terms cis and trans are tossed around?

    • boredcatlady

      I think that was why the whole debate around cis and trans as descriptors just clicked with me.

  • William Cook for now

    Aaand this thread thoroughly broke my Disqus.

  • SisterArtemis

    I love you, Our Mom of Us. What a way to kick off your advice column! Yay you AND the tits you walked in with!

    • sw19covfefe

      Today we are all the tits who walked in with Editrix!

      • I wish I could upvote this a thousand times!

        • CindyinEncinitas

          From my tits to yours…

  • sw19covfefe

    *seen on tumblr somewhere*

    Some monsters are LGBT+:

    The Babadook: YES

    TERFS: NO.

  • everstar

    As a cis woman, I respect the hell out of my trans sisters. I take being treated as a woman for granted; it can be a battle to the death for them. It humbles me to know that a quality I almost never think about can mean so much to someone else.

    It makes no sense to me that some feminists want to kick trans women “out.” Feminism, at its core, is about self-determination, so denying that right to trans women is, ultimately, self-defeating. Hell, we should celebrate them. Is there a bigger kick in the teeth to the patriarchy than a trans woman turning her back on the male privilege she could (theoretically) hide behind? What’s more feminist than someone for whom simply saying, “I am woman” is a revolutionary statement?

    I realize I’m putting trans women on a pedestal, but I also think they don’t get lauded enough, so there you go.

    • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

      I want to thank you for this. :)

      • everstar

        [blush] No problem. :)

    • Binkysbroad

      Yes! Thank you. I have an old friend from HS who thinks thinks transwomen don’t have the right to call themselves women because they weren’t molested as young girls like we were, or catcalled and harassed by men during their teens and 20s like we were. She thinks they coasted through life on male privilege and just woke up one day and decided”Walp, I think I’m gonna be a lady from now on!” I’ve given up trying to explain how gross and misogynist her TERF views are, but she just gets all smug and says *everyone is entitled to her own opinion*.
      I was so happy to see the Mom of Us address this issue today.

      • everstar

        I think of it this way: trans women had the theoretical option to pass as male, but being true to themselves was too important. They decided that being acknowledged as women was worth being molested, harassed, catcalled, and possibly assaulted and/or murdered. That’s how much being a woman means to them. I mean, my God. How can we as feminists afford to lose anyone with that kind of courage?

    • Sekhmet1

      Agree wholeheartedly. Well said.

    • brittany
    • Natalie

      I feel the same, I love them for being brave enough to be true to themselves, despite all the assholes of both sexes out there, and I wonder if I could be as brave were it my battle to fight.

  • chortlingdingo

    I think another problem is that people have a hard time discussing issues that don’t involve them. Like, yes all women face some level of oppression, but at this moment, I’m talking specifically about trans issues, or issues for women with a uterus, or issues for women of color, etc.

    It’s OKAY to talk about a single issue without dragging in all the rest. YES I know they’re there, but I’m talking about this one right now.

  • Angry Red Bird DGAF

    Good points all around.

  • I think all Wonkette posts about “female” issues should end with ‘Yay tits!” That made my day.

    ETA: I’m easily amused, so sue me.

  • Yr. Gma

    I guess I’m weird. When I meet a new person, I do not ask to see their genitals. If someone is introduced to me as “my Aunt Agnes,” I will go with “this is a woman” because I am so literal. If Aunt Agnes has more exotic plumbing than I do, well, that’s her business. If Aunt Agnes has a boyfriend with a temper and a gun and she wants to go to the shelter for…well, shelter, then it’s okay by me. If she needs to pee and she wants to go into the restroom and sit on one of those toilets behind the stall door, she’s welcome to it. I think maybe that’s better than peeing on the floor. I guess I understand (I don’t) why some women would think Aunt Agnes is robbing me of my resources, but I’m not one of them. I’m just simple that way.

    • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

      Gramma, I wish moar people were like you. :)

    • KatieAnnieOakley

      Perfect. ^ THIS ^

      • Barbarajphillips

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        • Amy!

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          You fucking people aren’t even any good at scams. Is this like 419 scams, where the idea is to suck in people who are borderline illiterate, except you’re targeting the innumerate?

    • Teecha

      I’ve never ever seen the contents of a woman’s undercrackers in the loos. BECAUSE WE USE CUBICLES. I really don’t get the hate and distrust.

      the person who used to come and fix the photocopier at the first school I worked in told us she was transitioning after I’d known her for a year or so. I can’t lie, it was a bit of a shock initially, but that was only because I’d never met a trans person before, and I was surprised. It was also 2003 and so not really talked about like it is today.
      She was really lovely and very excited about how much she was enjoying her life. It was extremely sad when she died during surgery. I never knew if it was an op related to her transition or not.

      The trans kids I’ve taught have been totally accepted by their peers. It’s a delight to see the social progress that’s been made.

      • HorseChestnut

        I’m so sorry about your friend.

      • Sekhmet1

        Poor woman, that’s terribly sad. I’m so sorry. But I am glad she was able to live authentically and was enjoying life.

        There’s a lovely woman who writes a blog I follow occasionally and is in some of my groups on FB – it used to focus exclusively on reviewing nail polish, but she stopped for a while due to dealing with a heap of offline issues. She’s now writing more personal posts, a number of which deal with her young (primary school aged) trans daughter. She and her husband took a while to get their heads around the idea, and I don’t think they’d even known much about trans issues before, but immediately realised they needed to let their daughter live as she wanted otherwise she’d be miserable. She talks about how wonderful the little girl’s school has been in referring to her daughter by her preferred name and pronouns, and the kid is so much happier. Even though they have to deal with dickheads who know damn well she identifies as a girl but still deliberately misgender her, the parents have been relieved at how accepting the staff and students were. Most kids, particularly young ones, seem to take difference-from-them in their stride if they’re not taught to hate and fear it by adults.

    • Gayer Than Thou

      When I meet a new person, I do not ask to see their genitals.

      I could take you to some bars where you would have the opportunity to do that, if you ever want to. Just let me know.

      • Yr. Gma

        You’re on!

  • Viktor DoKaren

    Thank you that was a wonderful rant. Also a reminder that not all rants are bad. ;)

    • SisterArtemis

      #NotAllRants

  • Swampgas_Man

    As a bisexual cis-male, do I really belong in this conversation? I will say that, unlike a lot of men, and I mean straight AND gay, I respect and in many cases love men, transmen, transwomen and bio-women alike. And the only time I ask about someone’s genitalia is when I’m trying to sleep with them.

    • Anna E Killsright, Agent KELLY

      Yes you belong, especially because you said that so beautifully. :)

  • The 3 drag queens (is that PC or not? I honestly don’t know) I saw on At Midnight last night are WAY more women than I am. I’m a card-carrying heterosexual woman, and they have me beat by a mile. But I’ve never given a shit (don’t wear make-up, high heels, or dresses), so there’s that.

    • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

      They were awesome, some of the best contestants @Midnight has ever had.

    • William Cook for now

      Drag queens is correct, but they are very different from trans women.

      Drag is a performance, an over the top celebration of gender stereotypes, where as trans is living authentically for your own survival. They’re polar oppoaites in a lot of ways.

      • Yeah, I get that now. Thanks.

        • William Cook for now

          I see now how brusque I came across, and I apologise. Thank you for asking.

          • Oh no! You weren’t at all! BTW, if you haven’t seen that episode, WATCH IT. Maybe the best one yet.

        • brittany

          Fun fact:

          The term drag actually comes from Shakespeare. Women weren’t allowed to be in the theatre, so all of the female parts in his plays were acted by men. If you’ve read a lot of Shakespeare, you may have noticed that their names don’t always give away their gender, so when Shakespeare wrote stage direction notes for the introduction of female characters, he would include “drag”, meaning “dressed resembling a girl”.

    • SisterArtemis

      I think one of the things that makes talking about all of this quite difficult is that we conflate gender with gender roles all the time. And if I didn’t have to rush off to work, I’d share more thoughts on that subject, but I at least wanted to put that thought out there.

      • Reince Pubis

        I agree. I read this “expose” on some right-wing site the other day about this 8 year-old drag queen that the author talked about as if he was a transexual, because the writer clearly thought the two things were synonymous.

      • Sekhmet1

        Yes, definitely. I would love to hear more of your thoughts on this when you have time, because I’ve been thinking about this too. I get why it’s frustrating for cis feminists who are fighting against reductive gender norms to see “womanhood” reduced to wearing a nice dress and makeup in the most simplistic analyses of gender identity and trans women. But that’s not trans women’s fault – that’s our society’s fault. I read an article by a feminist writer who I normally agree with wholeheartedly recently, on the subject of a Black woman lawyer and activist in the mid 20th century, and blinked at the writer’s suggestion that today that woman would have identified as a trans man. How can you know that? Maybe she would have identified as female with masculine gender presentation; maybe genderfluid; maybe trans male; maybe none of our business anyway. And one of the few articles I agreed with on an otherwise trans-antagonistic “feminist” site pointed out that just because Prince’s gender presentation wasn’t always obviously “male” didn’t make him a trans woman. Similarly, a kid who was defined as a boy at birth who wants to wear dresses, play with makeup and prefers My Little Pony to footy isn’t automatically transgender and might just be a boy who likes makeup and My Little Pony – although they may identify as female and decide to transition. Either way, it’s fine!

        If we abandoned restrictive gender norms and prescriptions – which are drummed into us from babyhood and absorbed subconsciously, I am not convinced at all that there is something on the sex chromosome that automatically makes girls gravitate towards things coded “girl” for instance – would that have any impact on someone’s inherent gender identity? I’m not sure that it would. But it would relieve cis and trans people of the pressure to adopt the traditional presentation of their gender identity if they didn’t want to.

        • SisterArtemis

          Wow, thanks so much for replying to me. Your thoughts align with a lot of mine – and one of the keys is the feminist notion that WE get to define how we express as male and/or female, including when we want to signal to other people where we are at. I don’t (again) have time to go into the whole complex mess of spaghetti tangles that comprise my ideas about gender, gender roles, feminism, trans-awareness, and just plain not being dicks to each other. But if and when I am able to take more time, I hope you’ll be part of the discussion.

    • Lambsendbeds

      AFAIK most drag queens are proud to call themselves “drag queens”. Well, if RuPaul is any example.

  • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

    Seems to me, with the exception of Dick Cheney, everyone is biological.

  • bookish

    My tits are so calm I keep them rolled up in my socks. Steady on, girls.

    • Shanzgood 14 Days

      That gave me a chuckle!

    • Up In Smoke O’hontas

      Indeed. Give the winch a night off once in a while!

  • shivaskeeper

    I have no relevant experience with this as I am cis male. I know and am friends with people all over the gender/sexuality spectrum. As far as I’m concerned, I’ll try to be the best ally I can be, but I will fuck up on occasion. Not intentionally, but it happens, I apologize and try to move on.

    My personal take on it, again with no relevant experience, is I’m concerned with your gender only as far as what I should call you. As for your sexuality, that’s none of my fucking business unless you’re sleeping with me in the sexy times way. If you want to tell me, fine. If you don’t want to tell me, fine as its not my concern.

    • Reince Pubis

      Agreed. Ifeel it’s not my business what genitals someone else has.

      • shivaskeeper

        It’s not even the genitals. People are people. The one absolute fundamental right that cannot be taken away is the right to define who you are. If you define yourself as something, I’m not going to say you are not that.

  • whitroth

    Yes. One of the reasons the Old Left fell apart, and the Left has not recovered, was all the assholes who are all You Don’t Have The Right Analysis, So I’m Going To Take My Copy Of Capital And Go Home.

    Folks, don’t shoot folks who agree 50% or 75% with you. Your own foot is not your target. Remember, the wealthy just *adore* when y’all are so cute, and will be glad to cheer us on from the sidelines.

    • whitroth

      On a related note, some of it comes from doing this all online, and not actually meeting each other. Emojis are NOT a replacement for Tone of voice and body language.

      To overcome that, at least for us Wonketteers, I have a modest proposal (no, not eating Republican babies): we ought to have some meetups in different cities. Now, I’m in the DC area, but I’ve got too much on my plate at the moment to deal with Meetup… but I’d happily come. We could call them Snark-ups, and sit around and snark over drinks….

      • Resistance Fighter Astraea

        Yeah, there is also legit frustration with people who fill comments sections of feminist blogs with demands for basic info or proof over and over in bad faith. Peoeple who interrupt interesting dialogue to either troll or simply demand full attention of a group can be incredibly draining on people who are already on an uphill battle. We are still babies at navigating these conversations online and I can’t completely blame the people who wanted to get more work done than educating newbs.

        • whitroth

          I mean, who gives a shit? If you’re not in each other’s pants, what’s the big deal?

          Hell, last year, an old friend of mine, older than me, called to see if I’d react badly, that he was transitioning. Geez, like that should be a problem… well, yes, how *do* you refer to someone before and after they transition? I knew him before? I like her before? um….

          • ButtercuptheHarelessRabbit

            Yes, that is confusing. I have a friend that I have known for decades and now he is a she and changed her name slightly to accommodate this. While I completely support her and am very happy to see how happy she is now, I struggle on a regular basis not to call her by her old masculine name. Old habits die hard. Fortunately, she is patient and is happy that we are even trying.

          • snowmentality

            I recommend asking your friend how they would prefer you handle it when talking about them in the past. I’m a cis lady who tied myself in knots over this and finally, with many apologies, asked my trans friend, who informed me that it is not a stupid or horrible question, and that in fact different people may want it handled in different ways, and then told me what she personally wanted.

            The only real global thing is that you shouldn’t out people as trans (like “my friend Name, she did X — oh but it was ‘he’ when we used to hang out”) without their specific permission, because that can put them in real danger.

      • redarmyzombie

        Okay, but can we still eat Republicans?

        • Teto85

          Yeah, but you have to spit roast or stew them otherwise they are too tough. Cooking them in their own juice is also good, but I like spit roasting and basting them with the drippin’s. And don’t forget the beer for helping with the basting and better beer to enjoy the eatin’.

          • brittany

            I’m allergic to beer. Can I use a nice shiraz instead?

          • Teto85

            Whatever flavour you favour. I can put it on ice if you like.

        • whitroth

          With words, eat ’em alive. On a platter… I dunno, seems that they’d carry nasty diseases, like greed….

  • JD Mulvey

    Just respect each other. Stay out of things that are not your business. If somebody wants to be referred to a certain way, refer to them that way. If someone makes an honest mistake, give them slack.

    • Up In Smoke O’hontas

      Calm, thoughtful, on-point…would up vote again!

    • Gregory Brown

      That’s where I am on this issue.

  • natoslug

    Yay tits. As far as everything else, I generally try to use whatever gender pronoun the other person prefers, although I kind of suck at remembering the whole zhe/xhe/zher/zher/zhey thing.

    • Poorly Behaved Pérsistanista

      I do roll my eyes, in private (!), with the invented pronouns. But whatever. It is zero skin off my nose what other people choose to do.

      My primary response is always compassion. I recognize that identifying with the gender I came into this world with is so much goddamn easier than the row trans folks have to hoe. I fucking hate conservatives for going out of their way to make it as hard (and humiliating) as they can.

    • Lambsendbeds

      I find they/them/their a lot easier to remember than the zhe/zher/zhey construct. Not to mention that it’s easier to pronounce. It is a bit of a headslapper at times, but there are examples in English grammar where a singular object is referred to with a plural pronoun. Fuck me, I can’t think of one right now…*slaps head*.

      • natoslug

        Well, there is always the singular they. I think it was NPR that discussed it a while back, and, stealing a quote shamelessly off of Meriam Webster’s web site, we have the following example:

        In an 1881 letter, Emily Dickinson wrote “Almost anyone under the
        circumstances would have doubted if [the letter] were theirs, or indeed
        if they were themself.”

  • Kiri the Unicorn

    “Am I the crazy one for thinking this is a stupid and pointless distraction?”

    Nope, you’re not. My partner Leslie is a trans woman, never mind that she’s not done with the actual transitioning, or whatever they call it.

    • theblackdog

      I’m with you, especially since the people that think they need to be gatekeepers on gender drive me crazy.

    • Lambsendbeds

      My therapist, who is a cis gay man who has a mostly queer clientele, says that very few of the trans women he knows have had the gender reassignment surgery ( bottom surgery). I’m not certain whether that is due to the massive expense if your insurance doesn’t cover it, but he tells me that some trans women don’t feel that it’s necessary. My opinion is “Why should my opinion matter to anyone?”. I am more of a “Whatever floats your boat” type.

  • Bemused

    The concept of intersectionality isn’t always easy.

  • kindness

    I have to confess, I’m not a woman. I’m not a trans. I’m a penis owning (it’s permanently attached and all) guy so much of this conversation has gone over my head. I’ve seen instances of it here and there but never paid it much attention. Is this REALLY a big thing now and OMG I am so old and out of it (obviously).

    • Yr. Gma

      Evidently it is a thing. I’m old and out of it, too. I guess there are members of the larger girls community who think there are only so many resources to go around and this is a problem. (I think that’s the issue.) As I’ve said, if we don’t check genitals every time we meet someone, this thing should be pretty easy to deal with.

      • efoveks

        So sayeth the woman with the rolling pin. :-)

      • Up In Smoke O’hontas

        So, smelling butts is off the table? Guess I’ve been doing it wrong this whole time.

      • Gregory Brown

        The teacher I work with, puts it very simply: sex is between your legs; gender is between your ears.

  • mfp

    “The populists don’t like “identity politics”? How’s a Kamala Harris/Kirsten Gillibrand 2020 ticket suit ya, DICKS?”

    i am a genuine, certified DICKS, and i am ALL IN FOR THIS,^^YAAAAAAAY!

    • theblackdog

      I’m all for Kamala Harris being on the ticket if she wants it. If she wants to stay in Congress instead I don’t want to see her getting thrashed by people who claimed to be her supporters until she made her decision.

    • mailman27

      Woo woo!!!!

  • theblackdog

    This is awesome Rebecca.

    The one thing I’m still learning to navigate is learning someone’s preferred pronouns. Luckily it seems at least for online interactions people are good at putting it in a profile or letting you know early on. It’s the offline interactions when I meet someone and haven’t been introduced to them so it’s trying to figure out that if I need to ask about their pronouns, how to work it into the initial conversation. Anyone have any experiences they want to share about this?

    • BosGrl

      My daughter* is gender fluid. I don’t always use the right pronouns (“them” and “they”), but I try. They are very forgiving and just corrects me. You would never know it to look at them, because they are very feminine so calling them “she” doesn’t get them upset. I can only speak for my experience with them.

      *daughter says that “daughter” is OK because they are over 18 (so “child” is out) and neither of us knows what I would call them.

      Edit: I’m a bit ashamed to say that when referring to them here, I use “she”. This is my problem and I’m going to stop now.

      • WomanInThePersistence

        I work with somebody who prefers “they”. It’s difficult because they have a very gendered name. I’m doing my best, and appreciate that they know that.

        • JD Mulvey

          The grammarian in me cringes when one individual is referred to as “they,” but I’ll get over it.

          • everstar

            I console myself with the knowledge Shakespeare used “they” as a singular pronoun.

          • Resistance Fighter Puipui

            Also Jane Austen! Which means it must be proper English, because Jane Austen.

          • Canned Covfefe

            OMG! I have never understood why not only do “they” as a singular pronoun not sound wrong but that it felt familiarly right. I am serious. It’s always seemed like such an odd thing to get so hepped up about. Thank you both.
            Ahhhhh. TFW something falls into place after so long.

          • boredcatlady

            The passive aggressive in me totally gets it, like “people need to stop putting the ice tray back empty” or “they don’t even want to pull this shit right now”

          • Lambsendbeds

            Putting the ice cube tray away empty! Gahhhh! Now that is an issue worth getting all up in someone’s grill about! People at work do this ALL the time and I am someone who carries a thermal mug of ice water with me year round. Nothing starts the day off like getting to work, opening the freezer, and finding two empty ice cube trays.

            Wait…what were we talking about?

          • ALP

            Even AP has adjusted the rules on they/them to reflect changing usage of pronouns. They actually released information helping reporters interact with trans people they are interviewing and how to write about them

          • Canned Covfefe

            Thank you.

      • Lambsendbeds

        How about calling them your “offspring”?
        When you are pissed at them, you could say “spawn”…j/k…

        • BosGrl

          Offspring sounds unnatural for me. I do like spawn, however, and hatchling, depending on the context. :)

          • ahughes798

            Fruit of my loins?

          • BosGrl

            My kid would not like that. I guess “my kid” in informal situations is OK.

      • Resistance Fighter Puipui

        My daughter* also uses they/them, which is a fairly recent change, and although I’ve always been adamant about people respecting other people’s pronouns, I’ve found that it’s been way more difficult when I’m trying to change 20+ years of habit than I’d hoped. I’ve gotten to where I get it right most of the time, though, and I can usually catch myself when I screw up so I can correct myself, so that’s important. If I screw it up mentally, when it’s just me, then I’ll stop everything and repeat it to myself a few times, because if I can get it right when I think it then I’m more likely to get it right out loud.

        Their father, on the other hand, barely even tries, and very clearly only tries at all when they’re around. This is just more proof that he’s an asshole, and it makes me more glad than ever that we’re divorced.

        * same asterisk as yours

        • BosGrl

          It is really hard. At least we are trying and respecting their wishes. My ex won’t use the pronouns either. >:( He thinks it’s a phase. My argument is, I doubt it, but even so, so what?

          • Resistance Fighter Puipui

            Right? Even if it is a phase, why would you hurt your kid’s feelings on purpose like that? That’s just bad parenting.

    • shivaskeeper

      I generally go with the pronoun attached to the name unless told otherwise.

  • SadDemInTex

    First, I grew up in San Francisco and I went to school in NYC. I work in the arts and every place I’ve been or worked had someone trans. And until this last few years there was none of this crap. Even the conservative assholes behaved themselves. What the fuck is wrong with these people? I am truly bewildered.

    • shivaskeeper

      Same thing that always happens. Trans folk decided they didn’t want to be second class anymore.

      That is always a magnet for more animus.

    • Jennifer R

      I’ve been taking this shit all that time. It was always happening, we just didn’t speak up until now.

      • SadDemInTex

        I’m certainly not speaking about the society at large just my own bubble of colleagues. But, of course you have endured unspeakable abuse and I’m ashamed of our species for it!

      • Up In Smoke O’hontas

        Speak, sister. Fucking speak, ALL sisters!*
        *Except Caitlin Jenner. She can STFU any time now.**
        **I only see the world in “don’t support 45,” because smart, and “support 45,” and should be institutionalized.

    • HorseChestnut

      Massively increased visibility. Suddenly, everyone’s talking about us- so now, it must be OK to talk about us.

    • I’ve been thinking the same thing. I dated a trans woman for awhile in my 20s. I never noticed anyone even look at us funny when we, for example, both went to the women’s bathroom. She didn’t necessarily “pass”, but it seemed obvious to me that she was a woman, so I assumed it was just obvious to everyone, and who would fuss about a woman in the women’s room? I truly didn’t understand where all the furor came from all of a sudden.

      Then it occurred to me that maybe I just literally didn’t notice it, not because it wasn’t happening but because I didn’t know to look out for it. Or maybe it wasn’t happening because I was there. Like how your boyfriend or brother don’t believe street harassment exists because when you’re walking with them, dudes don’t catcall you.

    • Gigglesnort

      It is kind of hard to see what the problem is if you live near Babylon by the Bay. And the younger generation tends to be more open than the old folks in my experience. My eyes have been opened quite a bit because my daughter doesn’t seem to know any straight people (well, maybe one or two) and I’ve seen most kinds of LGBTQ there are by now.

  • Lyly Sirivong

    Real life (especially outside the US) can be very backwards when it comes to these matters, compared to the internet. Sometimes I hear people spout very ignorant stuff about trans people and I wonder “should I correct them ?” And then I remember that time when I tried to explain to a colleague why coming out was important to gay people… that colleague didn’t even understand the difference between sexual orientation and sexual practices, no matter how many times I tried to explain. She was saying things like “It’s none of my business if people are into laces or bondage, why should I care about them being gay ?” I got angry and frustrated. So most of the time, I shut my mouth because I’m thinking “I don’t even know where to begin.”

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      Gee, that’s not even the shittiest thing I’ve heard said.

  • Jim QuinnX

    I tend to agree that most folks should view this topic as one in which the enormity of the fuck they do not give is monumental. The only thing I’ll mention is that I am continually astonished by the ignorance of all things sexual. The college students I teach are dumb as a box of hammers when it comes to sex; it just makes sense that their parents are even dumber.

  • Sekhmet1

    I’m a cis woman and have been trying to navigate and get my head around this for the past few years, since I started actively following and participating in online feminist discussions (on FB mostly). I have otherwise highly progressive, accepting feminist friends who nonetheless have this weird thing about trans women – there’s one who shares really shitty, vicious articles from TERFs and non-feminist anti-trans bigots equating going to the toilet in a cubicle next to a trans woman with some cis het dude sending unsolicited dick pics (seriously, if you’re trying that desperately to check out another woman’s genitals while she’s in the loo or changing at the gym, you’re the one with the major problem!). I do challenge them although not as often as I should – usually it’s a case of “where do I even start with this nonsense?” And while trans women are being murdered at an astronomical rate, there are cis people getting huffy at being called “cis” because they interpret it as a slur – one told me off for using it and femsplained at me when I commented that Malcolm Turnbull appointing a few women as cabinet ministers was hardly a “win for all women” as trumpeted in the meeja, but a win for those particular white cis het able-bodied conservative women. She sounded like those RWNJ shock jocks and politicians who claim to get the vapours and yell, “That’s racist!” every time someone (accurately) calls them white men. I mean, for fuck’s sake, get a grip.

    And yes, some trans feminists can be shitty in return, I agree with that. I ended up unfollowing a page because it got to the point of people being shouted at by the admins (a mix of trans and cis women) or the followers for as little as saying “good morning” (yes, I exaggerate, but it doesn’t feel all that far off – I think the thing that really got me was someone asking why they all spelled “folks” with an x – the explanation was that “folks” translates to a gendered noun in other languages, which led to varying responses of, “errrr…. okaaaaay”). In fairness, it wasn’t a Feminism 101 page and they rightly expected anyone engaging in discussion to know what they were talking about and to have read their rules, and of course their anger is understandable in the face of their very lives and humanity being questioned and threatened. But it was a very cliquey space and I had flashbacks to the mean girls of Year 9 at school. Then again, it was not necessarily a space intended for me, so …

    I suppose it’s reinforced what I really already know – there are arseholes in every demographic group, and all of us are capable of being, and indeed have been, an arsehole to someone throughout our lives. But there are some principles that surely aren’t that hard to grasp. Don’t deliberately misgender people – it’s rude. It’s rude to do it to cis people and it’s particularly rude to do it to trans people. Don’t obsess about the genitals of the person next to you in the toilets – that’s frankly fucking weird. As best we can, I think we need to stop centring white cis het women as the default setting for “women” – getting more white women on the board of BHP or Facebook won’t do shit for the refugee woman who cleans those offices for a pittance because she can’t get her qualifications recognised or didn’t have the opportunity to get a decent education at all, as a for instance. And most importantly – as with the Labor/Greens, left-wing purity/pragmatists shitfights – try not to forget who and what our real enemies are.

    • rebecca

      you must have been storing that one up! well-said.

      • Sekhmet1

        Thanks – yeah, I have a bit! I got really pissed off at a post the other day shared by one woman on my feed whose only engagement with a comment by one of her friends, critiquing a really rubbish transphobic article by an apparent TERF, was “I reject the legitimacy of the term TERF”. I wanted to respond, but had no idea what to say. What the hell do you do with that? But I also have a huge problem with the idea – promoted by the FB page I mentioned – that everyone must centre trans women in every discussion, all the time, whatever the issue and I’m still trying to grapple with why I react in that way. It got taken to the point where that quote from a comedian describing street harassment as being like running the gauntlet of shopping centre touts and telemarketers all aggressively selling one thing, DICKS, was criticised as being trans-exclusive. Since it was describing a behaviour that appears to be the preserve of cis het males*, that was kind of the point. I also couldn’t imagine trans men and women being so rude or even wanting to be included in the Obnoxious Street Harasser Club. but hey, I suppose it’s possible.

        *Yes, I know – #notallcishetmen

        • Amy!

          I don’t like the term “TERF” either, but I don’t think my solution would appeal to them. The trans-exclusionary part seems merely descriptive, to me. The feminist part, radical or otherwise, seems questionable, again in my opinion. Different definitions of feminism. I don’t think that this would calm any argument over the use of the term, though.

          • Sekhmet1

            Good point – trans-exclusionary is a descriptor as far as I’m concerned too. I also find the F in “TERF” a problem because I honestly don’t see how feminism – at least, feminism as I understand it – can logically exclude trans people. The word trans-antagonism, which I came across in recent years, strikes me as more accurate for many o them.

          • boredcatlady

            Trans-antagonism? That’s a new one to me but I like it

          • Sakonyachen

            “The feminist part, radical or otherwise, seems questionable, again in my opinion”

            As with any group, there will always be people who forget what the group is about. With the term feminism, it doesn’t really say vagina in there anywhere. Why is that so hard for some feminists to see. I’m a CIA white male and plenty masculine(stopped in the middle of that to beat on my chest), but I can see that birth sex is not gender and there shouldn’t be an asterisk for translady feminists.

          • Amy!

            I particularly like what I think is an autocorrect, from ‘cis’ to ‘CIA’.

            If the whole non-trans population is actually CIA, it would explain a lot.

            ;-)

          • Sakonyachen

            Thanks for that. It was definitely autocorrect.

  • Jennifer R

    Thought experiment time kids!
    People who don’t understand being trans: Close your eyes and pretend you are the gender you are. Now pretend that no one else believes you at all, and treats you like shit.
    Congratulations, welcome to step one.

    • SisterArtemis

      That’s an excellent thought experiment! Thank you!

    • Robyn Ryan

      Sounds like my military career. I was commissioned in 76, shortly after they desegregated women.

    • Sakonyachen

      Ow! That was painful.

      • Jennifer R

        I realized long ago most people couldn’t conceptualize being another gender, but maybe they could conceptualize everyone calling them a liar.

  • tehbaddr

    Many years ago one of my trany’s was acting up. It would be fine, then just not want to do it any more for a bit, then surge like crazy! The unit either had to be replaced or scraped. Finally figured out it was the torque lock-up converter. I disconnected the lock-up converter and it was fine. I rode that thing for a few more years till I got tired of it and moved on. BTW that was on a 1984 Z24.

    Wait, wut is the problem with trannies here?

    • rebecca

      dad joke o.O

      • tehbaddr

        Heh, yeah.

    • Up In Smoke O’hontas

      I Datsun that coming.

    • David Pseudonym

      Not so much a problem – just the old Stock vs Aftermarket argument.

    • ahughes798

      They always brake when you can’t afFORD them to. Har Har.

    • Vagenda and Pee-ara

      I heard a guy talking about his trannie the other day, and was confused for a bit.

    • Strepsi
  • covfefesumgame0005

    sorry self-pitying and stupid reply

  • Up In Smoke O’hontas

    I, for one, welcome all Trans and cisters (get it, huh, elbow nudge?) in dropping the drama and the judgments and the insecurities in our resistance against the common enemy of ignorance and self loathing. I can’t begin to fathom the amount of intestinal fortitude it takes to transition, but I admire anyone who takes on that struggle and stand behind anyone to scared to do it yet. 1 on every 1000 births (someone else can do the Googles on this, I r on obamaphone) is of a non typical gender, and 1000 of 1000 of those births come out of a vagina, so we have that common ground to start with.

    TL,DR: Bitches, quit trippin’, IMHO.

    Also, I do my darndest to stay Midwestern nice on the interest as a choice. Sure, I may be inappropriate, sure I may be vile, but I try to be reasonable with everyone except the obvious trolls because who knows when one might encounter an open(ish) mind.

    • Strepsi

      It’s a good line, and I like your niceness, but only 660 of those babies come out of a vagina. 325 came out of a stomach by caesarian, and 15 would come out of a test tube (1.5%). Really! :D

  • Robyn Ryan

    As a young women, a few galactic empires ago, we argued that ‘biology is not destiny. ‘
    The argument was that just because you had a uterus, you shouldn’t be forced to be pregnant.
    The coin flips. Maybe we dont know jack about biology . It’s complex.
    But even if it isn’t biology, it is good manners. What you look like isn’t the most important thing about you.
    Are you kind?
    That trumps genitalia. We spend our lives judged by what we look like. We don’t need to pass it forward.
    Accept and enjoy the differences. We’re not men. We can handle the tough stuff.
    .

    • Saxo the Grammarian

      I had quite the moment of enlightenment some years ago when I learned that some humans are chimeras, that is, they have more than one set of DNA. This happens when two ova (eggs) are fertilized and then combine into one zygote. Actual biology has a way of confounding our conventional wisdom about How Things Are – and that might be why creationists hate evolution so much.

    • Hiam J Beaudry

      “That trumps genitalia.”

      I don’t want that image in my head. Please rephrase in future.

      p.s. I would vituperate all over you for the “We’re not men. We can handle the tough stuff” calumny, but I just noticed a sniffle so I have to spend the next four days in bed. I”l get back to you.

      • Robyn Ryan

        LOL.

        Sent from my T-Mobile 4G LTE Device
        ——– Original message ——–From: Disqus Date: 6/25/17 12:08 PM (GMT-06:00) To: Robynmarigny@aol.com Subject: Re: Comment on Fuckin’ A, People, It’s Not That Hard: The Trans-Cis-Woman Sister Act
        “”That trumps genitalia.”

        I don’t want that image in my head. Please rephrase in future.

        p.s. I would vituperate all over you for the “We’re not men. We can handle the tough stuff” calumny, but I just noticed a sniffle so I have to spend the next four days in bed. I”l get back to you.”

        Settings

        A new comment was posted on wonkette.com

        Hiam J Beaudry

        “That trumps genitalia.”I don’t want that image in my head. Please rephrase in future.p.s. I would vituperate all over you for the “We’re not men. We can handle the tough stuff” calumny, but I just noticed a sniffle so I have to spend the next four days in bed. I”l get back to you.

        1:08 p.m., Sunday June 25

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  • BJW

    Bravo Rebecca! Great start. I look forward to reading many, many more advice posts. MWAH!

  • Panika MCD

    there are so many things I could share from the TX bathroom bill hearing right now–I learned so much!

    but for people who consider themselves feminists and don’t want trans women peeing in the stall next to them:

    a) why don’t you pee at home and leave the rest of us alone?

    b) there are 100 different hormonal and chromosomal conditions that can result in a baby of indiscriminate gender (aka intersex) and I would like to know where you think they should pee.

    c) yay tits!

    • ahughes798

      Is it weird that I never ever thought of sex or gender of the person in the bathroom stall next to me? I assume/d they are women. I’ve only “known” one trans woman. I’m sure I’ve pee’d next to many. I’m sure I’ve met many, in the course of my life. What parts a person may have/not have, or their gender has never occurred to me when someone says, “Hi April, I want you to meet my friend Kim(or Ted).”

      I agree with the poster below….some people have too much time on their hands.

      • Panika MCD

        and smutty, smutty minds.

      • Panika MCD

        also too: your comment could be summed up by the two elementary aged trans girls who came to the hearing.

        the first was 5 or 6 years old. she said, “I don’t get it. you just tinkle and leave.” because she really can’t believe that anyone deliberately exposes themselves in the bathroom of the gender with which they identify. because: ding! ding! ding! they don’t.

        the second was a girl that made a poster and they left around ten pm because: school night. a woman kindly offered to present the poster which happened sometime between 1:30 and 3 am (I can’t remember…it was a long day.) in any case, the poster featured a unicorn flying through a rainbow. it said, “THE UNICORNS ARE WITH US! YOU SHOULD BE, TOO!”

        • cleanplace-reasonablypriced

          YAY for those girls!

        • Ivana Schtupp

          I want that on a goddamn teeshirt.

          • Panika MCD

            the latter stayed for the bathroom bill lite hearing and got to speak at 12:30 am while the girl was sleeping in her dad’s arms. neither the bathroom bill nor the bathroom bill lite were ever taken up for a vote in House State Affairs because the chair co-authored the fetal funerals bill as a cover. (they know that shit is going to get thrown out in court, but it’s good red meat for the primary voters that doesn’t actually do anything.)

  • LadyLaz

    Gotta give some money for ze Wonkette

  • Nick.Trite

    The thing I hate most about TERFs is how often they try and speak for lesbians. They act like we’re poor defenseless babies who will just die if we see a penis, or they try to pretend like you’re not still a lesbian if you sleep with a transwoman. It’s the most infantilizing, lesbophobic horseshit.

    • SisterArtemis

      Thank you!

    • Resistance Fighter Puipui

      They’re also frequently the ones who argue that true bisexuals don’t exist, and who tell me that I’m not allowed to use the word “queer” for myself anymore because they don’t like it.

      Fuck those assholes.

      • Nick.Trite

        The “no true bisexuals” thing is ridiculous and bigoted, but I can’t say I 100% disagree with the “no q-word thing.” I don’t police other people’s choice to reclaim it for themselves, but I really hate when people try to apply that label to me. I grew up in the south where it’s still very much alive as a slur, so I really hate being called the q-word.

        • William Cook for now

          Mnhm, life is a lot simpler when you just call people what they wanna be called.

        • Natalie Au Natural Hedonist

          Raises Hand. Hello, true bisexual here, we do exist. I have a husband, and a girlfriend and life is good.

  • Gregory Brown

    Yay tits, indeed. I worked with a guy that I later found out had not been born that way, and my reaction was, “He’s a good co-worker, helps me any time I need it. He’s my guy!” And then I pretty much didn’t think about it anymore. We have enough yoooooge problems as it is. People need to relax.

  • Gregory Brown

    Not to put too fine a point on it, but in wading through the swamp of jargon that people are using to fight with each other over their differences, I can only conclude that there are a lot of people with way too much fucking time on their hands. When I encounter another human, my first question is, “Is this person a decent human being, or an asshole? Let’s watch for a bit, and see.” And then I make up my mind after the person’s actions reveal the answer.

    • Regret

      When I encounter another object:
      1. Velocity?
      2. Trajectory?
      3. Estimated mass?
      4. Threat level? (with various other factors added in)
      5a. Morally acceptable to destroy?
      5b. Morally acceptable to damage?
      6a. Socially acceptable to destroy?
      6b. Socially acceptable to damage?
      These determine my collision avoidance actions.
      If I am very tired I skip 6.
      Once I was so overworked I even skipped 5.
      I try not to get THAT tired anymore, that was a disturbing experience.

      It continues with:
      7. Is it interesting? (ex. The presence of a book is a major plus)
      8. Is it a person?
      9. Do I feel like (social) interaction?

      Depending on the results, this would be the point I start up the social interaction protocols (the ones that aren’t already running, i.e. those beyond baseline.)

      • Gregory Brown

        You are overthinking it

  • Saxo the Grammarian

    “a ploy to separate allies”

    Yep. “Bernie would have won”. “Dump Nancy Pelosi”. “Nominate pro-life Democratic candidates”. “Abandon identity politics”.

    Great post.

    • phoenix00

      All the times when we are all (unnecessarily) our own worse enemies…..

  • Gregory Brown

    I was a newspaperman for 32 years, and newspapermen are good at condensing lots of overwritten shit. For instance, we newspaper people long ago edited the New Testament into five lines: “Christ was born. He lived. He died. He’s coming back. And he’s not happy.” Here’s my take on gender identity and all the fucking arguments about it: Sex is between your legs. Gender is between your ears. And here is my take on people: “By their fruits you shall know them.” And then there’s the Constitution, which applies to every damn one of us. No exceptions.
    We have a lot more important things to worry about than arguing with each other. The fucking enemy is at the fucking gates, and they have us just where they want us, bitching at each other, while they march in. We had better link arms, before it’s too goddam late.

    • thewendyb

      Excellent!!!!!!!

    • Regret

      “By their fruits you shall know them.”

      LOL ‘fruits’ means genitals.
      That was a nifty spat of wordplay.

      Obviously, I can’t agree with the implied “genitals determine personality”.
      Though it could be that you meant results instead of genitals. Language is hard.

      • Gregory Brown

        It’s the Bible, Regret. Fruits, in the context of the quote, represents their actions and the consequences thereof, so, their personalities, but NOT their genitals. Language IS hard. I’ve been an editor for three decades. I know how hard it is for people who have not read widely.

        From Matthew 7:16-20 King James version:

        “Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

        17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

        18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

        19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

        20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

  • gingerwentworth

    Hard to imagine why regular women would care about transgender women getting privileges. They’re like women who’ve arrived from the most horrible war-torn nation in history. A trans woman I was in a play with once was pretty reserved– but she urged me to get bras with more support– take care of my breasts, which I didn’t think about. That was strange– pretty nice in retrospect. It opened my mind to an idea that things so ordinary could be so hard-won.

    • William Cook for now

      A lot of TERFs percieve trans women as men invading spaces made and reserved for women. Pretty much it.

  • phoenix00

    I am not actually the Blessed Virgin Mary of Internet Perfection

    http://www.reactiongifs.us/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/raining_david_tennant.gif

    • Canned Covfefe

      This makes me feel so sad.

      • phoenix00

        I was under the impression Editrix was the most holiest of internet perfectionists! What shall I do NOW?!?!

    • boredcatlady

      This has cracked me up twice today

  • boredcatlady

    You know, the whole generational divide on this had totally slipped my mind so I’m so glad mama brought it up. I remembered when those college-aged trans activists were protesting a screening of Boys Don’t Cry because it “promoted antitrans violence and language” and I was like ????? Is this a joke? It wasn’t, they were serious, and us Olds get really fucking tired of having to describe the nineties to people who haven’t yet figured out that progress means we keep getting better, not that we’re getting perfect.

    • lurch394

      Like people objecting to the n-word in Huck Finn. I’m sorry the word is hurtful, but editing it out of our literature won’t actually improve race relations.

      • boredcatlady

        I’m pretty okay with calling the Agatha Christie book And Then There Were None instead of the original title

        • BreakingDeadMen

          Sure, but that’s different from Twain. Twain’s book deals explicitly with Jim’s slavery, requiring explicit language to honestly tell it,
          whereas the other is a plot point about a nursery rhyme.

          • boredcatlady

            You’re right, context is so key. It’s been too long since I read Huck Finn., tbh.

        • lurch394

          No argument here. It’s not like she wrote The N— of the Narcissus. She’s no Joseph Conrad.

      • Vagenda and Pee-ara

        That drives me crazy, too. Why try to erase history? I’d prefer to remember it, so as not to repeat it.

  • Sakonyachen

    This sounds like the problem that the far left is having right now. You have brocialists(“free college and healthcare, no browns allowed”), and you have leftist Dems who now think they are Chairman Mao since Hillary “lost”. Bernie was not the peak of Leftist ideals. A DemSoc seeks to put a bandaid on the bulletwound that is capitalism, they are not exactly Vladimir Lenin. So instead of getting any real conversation going, you get people who know fuck all about Socialism, Communism, Anarchism or Star Trek telling you how to be a proper leftist.

    I feel for every feminist caught in that merry go round. Different terms and issues, but the same level of A idiocy.

  • Fuckin-A (if thats allowed) and thank you for being this angry so I can spare my blood pressure a little.

  • Katherine Collins

    I am 70 years old, and I transitioned (male-to-female) 25 years ago. Being a Trans-woman of my generation sucks. Luckily for me, I had a wonderful darling partner, a self-described “bull dyke”. But she died, and I have been single ever since, because most women around my age hate trans-women like poison. The number of crude and abusive incidents I have weathered is beyond counting. I am a kind and gentle woman, with a core of steel thank heaven, or I would have killed myself. I am desperately lonely. Somebody is missing out on the best partner of their life. I am so angry at these women who continue to spread the belief that trans-women are “really men”. They are, of course, really jerks. I wish there could be a movement to stop this calumny.

    • thewendyb

      Hi. Let’s be friends! I am on Facebook as Wendy Ballard.

    • Bad Tom

      Blessings to you.

    • la bibliotequetress

      Love to you.

    • crazymonkeylady

      Hugs to you, girlfriend.

    • anomie

      stay strong. :) kind hugs to you.

    • William Cook for now

      If it’s any consolation, thank you for helping to pave the way for the way things are today. I know you didn’t have a choice, but still, I appreciate how much harder you had it, and how strong you must be to have made it this far.

    • April

      Hugs and more hugs…

    • Strepsi

      I think the young trans movement is doing that – I was at Toronto Pride and I saw little nuclear families where the dad was F-to-M, or M-to-F lesbians, straight and gay drag queens, and a few straight women who are VERY edgy and call themselves “they” in solidarity, and many people I could not determine one way or another. In the end, I could no longer guess what anyone’s “real” gender was… and it was HEAVEN.

      Get out there Katherine – or get on here! – you’re lovely.

      • Regret

        Aw, man I love this situation so much:
        ” and many people I could not determine one way or another.”
        I wish I experienced that more often.

    • Jeffery Campbell

      I’m really delighted to meet a pioneer! You’ll find this place a true delight and one where we will appreciate your grace and talents.

  • Boo Hoo

    I had a woman share an article with me today where someone in the comments section said she didn’t give a shit if transwomen kill themselves. I don’t know how to combat that kind of ugliness and lack of compassion, Rebecca. It’s totally foreign to me. Somehow, I don’t think screaming at her in caps would help.

    • anomie

      you can’t reason with that kind of ugliness. It really just indicates there’s something sadly wrong in the life of the person who said it, something neither caused by trans women nor fixable by anyone else. Really this is one of those times you just say “I’m sorry you have such cruel feelings toward other humans.”

      • boredcatlady

        When the only thing you have left to say is “I’ll pray for you”

    • Zannah Merrill

      But if you scream at her… I’ll feel better. Even if you don’t.

      🎶No, I’m no angel🎶

    • Regret

      MIP.
      Start from very far away and Make It Personal.

      Incrementally with very small steps, of course.

      – Ask if they have a distant relative with weird ideas (Andy) that they tolerate.
      – Ask if they would understand a closer relative (Becca) being sad when Andy dies.
      – Ask what would happen it if Becca started thinking about Andy’s weird ideas and discussing them.
      – Ask if Becca’s death should make her sister (Cindy) sad, even if 5 years after the death you find out that Becca was secretly living according to one of Andy’s weird ideas.

      Do this again and again, starting with very neutral concepts, and slowly getting closer to the idea of people changing gender.

      At worst, you find out where exactly their empathy stops. That is useful information when introducing someone. Never fail to introduce them with that information: “This is Denise, she likes it when men wear her underwear, but the moment a man decides to become a woman Denise wants that person to die.”

  • crazymonkeylady

    I was told by someone that because I had a c-section I hadn’t ‘given birth’ but had an operation so it wasn’t ‘real’. Then why did I go in the hospital and go home with a baby. Did she spring from my forehead, for fuck sake? Just plain mean. So fuck off with judgments based on bullshit reasoning.

    • boredcatlady

      That’s a philosophy? WTF???

    • anomie

      wow… what an awful thought for any human to have, let alone express (the part about having a c-section not truly giving birth).

      not like most women would prefer a c-section in the first place, I should point out… salt in the wound to load that on.

      my first baby was last minute c-section because huge baby and breech; second was regular delivery (although even more huge) – c-section was way harder to recover from so really you’re a superhero either way.

    • Jeffery Campbell

      Ooh, like Zeus and Athena. I hope you smote that terrible person with one of your personal lightening bolts.

  • lovelydestruction

    I assume trans women feel similar to my cis woman identity on the inside. Except, I don’t really appreciate having boobs and a vagina and would rather be built like a Skipper doll. Yet, I like swinging dicks on hairy people, so I’m in a quandary. Gender is HARD, sort of like Algebra.

    • William Cook for now

      Liking swinging dicks and/or hairy people is a valid option for all bodies and genders. :)

      • lovelydestruction

        Yup, variations.

  • IndigoSnap

    Man, I’m so glad you’re the Mom of me because you’re SMRT! Give all the advice!

  • Arki J. Kirwin-Muller

    This was a wonderful read, comments and article both.

  • Covfefe Big Puppy

    Love this!

  • Jeffery Campbell

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you. My world is bleak and black and here you come with a glittering unicorn rainbow of good sense. It’s not for nothing I come to WonketteWorld first thing in the AM so that I have a shot and getting through.

  • boredcatlady

    Editrix – are we SURE milo ain’t getting up in our AOL chatrooms? I read a story in the Wonkette Times Ledger Herald about him and the Mercers? 😊

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