From The Observer:
Trans vs. Feminism : Video footage of Queer/Trans activists at the ‘Law and Disorder’ conference following last weekend’s Portland attack
May 16, 2013
The following is the first video to emerge of events that took place at last weekend’s Portland University “Law and Disorder” conference, where two feminists were assaulted by angry transgender and “queer” activists who were enraged that women were offering materials which presented the feminist belief that sex-roles or “gender” are harmful to women and girls. The attackers believed that sex-roles must be supported and that women should not be permitted to voice opinions or write books critical of gender. The queer/trans politic (as seen in this video) believes that uttering such opinions is so offensive that feminists who express them should be silenced by any means necessary, including threats, censorship and violence. In Saturday’s attack the feminists were threatened and terrorized, their books were destroyed, and one of the women was marked up with a magic marker by one of the men. Read the previous post here: http://gendertrender.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/feminists-assaulted-in-transgender-attack-at-portland-conference-for-social-change-womens-books-destroyed-and-bodies-defaced-with-permanent-magic-markers/
This two-part video captures some of the events that took place at the conference the next day, when feminists and some of the male members of DGR attempted to again present materials from Deep Green Resistance – including feminist materials critical of gender.
Again: this is NOT footage of the violent attack. This is footage of queer/transgender activists surrounding the table of Deep Green Resistance the day AFTER the Saturday attack. Footage from Saturday has not yet emerged. To GenderTrender’s knowledge, NONE of the people in this video are accused of committing the violent attack and destruction of feminist books the day before. (More information including the identity of those attackers is emerging and will be posted shortly.) Regardless, this video shows the timbre of the male-centric queer/trans community’s approach to feminist theory and activism which is critical of sex-based social roles or “gender”.
Deep Green Resistance have issued a public statement about the attacks. Here it is:
Three incidents occurred at the “Law and Disorder Conference” in Portland May 11 and 12 concerning DGR and transgender/queer activists. A lot of lies have been told about these incidents. We need to tell the facts of what physically happened.
Two women were tabling, handing out DGR literature and selling books. A group of five transgender/queer activists came up to the table. One of the male queer activists began shouting at the women, using aggressive language. This man made threatening gestures toward the women. He grabbed and defaced table materials. When one of the women went to protect the materials, he marked her arm and hand as well.
This conference states it has a policy of safe spaces, but “safe spaces” evidently doesn’t apply to women, because although most people in the room had no choice but to hear the shouting, no one, including the organizers, intervened to stop this man and his aggressive behavior.
A half an hour later, a male DGR member tried to engage in respectful conversation with these queer activists. They began chanting at him and insulting him, culminating in them throwing trash and food at his head.
The next day, Sunday, the DGR crew went back, for more tabling, and an angry mob of queer activists again approached the table, yelling and cursing at them, and demanded that they leave. You can watch the video of this. Once again, for all their talk of “safe spaces,” the organizers did not intervene, nor provide a safe space.
You will see that throughout all of this, the DGR members were respectful and courteous. They tried to de-escalate. Nonetheless, they were the recipients of bullying, threats, and silencing.
One of the organizers, Brandon Speck, witnessed much of this, and at least pretended to express concern for the women. He originally said that the perpetrators would not be invited back next year. He also promised that he would write up a statement of solidarity with the victims condemning the attacks. He further promised to run this statement by the victims before publishing it. He was not telling the truth. He did not run the statement by the women, and the statement he did publish indeed blames the DGR members for their own victimization. Women from all over responded en masse to this by pointing out that this was the classic victim-blaming that characterizes patriarchy and misogyny. The thread was deleted, and the organizer falsely claimed this was because of “violently transphobic comments.” This was as much a lie as their original release blaming the victims. The only violence in the comments was directed at DGR members.
DGR has never threatened anyone, and has a code of conduct that disallows making threats against people. Any DGR person who behaved as violently as any of the queer activists did at this conference would be immediately banned from DGR. Instead, what has happened is a barrage of threats against DGR members, up to and including mass beheading. And yet these comments are allowed to remain.
We ask everyone to stand in solidarity with all victims of patriarchal, male-pattern violence, starting with the women who were subjected to this at the Law and Disorder conference.
Feminists assaulted in Transgender Attack at Portland conference for Social Change: Women’s books destroyed and bodies defaced with permanent magic markers
May 13, 2013
Breaking News: In what has been described as a “horrifying” incident two women were attacked by a group of men who identified themselves as “transgender women” at the Portland State University “Law and Disorder Conference” which billed itself as a “provocative space for comparative critical dialogue between activists, revolutionaries, educators, artists, musicians, scholars, dancers, actors and writers”.
The women were attacked in a coordinated assault as they sat at a table which sold feminist books and literature. The men destroyed the books and marked up the table display with permanent markers. One of the women was also marked up by the men. Predominantly male conference onlookers by all reports allowed the attack to take place, watching in stunned silence. Two males affiliated with the same group as the feminists -Deep Green Resistance- were also in attendance and the “trans women” threw a projectile at the head of one of them.
According to reports, the transgender males or “trans women” took issue with the feminist content in the Deep Green Resistance materials. Specifically, a portion of the materials reflected the feminist position that social roles based on sex are undesirable and harmful to women.
The transgender males believe that social roles based on sex are natural and innate and that it is instead the unchanging nature of biological sex that is undesirable. They believe that women should not criticize social roles based on sex, in deference to the feelings of men like themselves who embrace such roles. The men reportedly stated that all feminist writing and voices should be silenced by males with force if necessary, and they then proceeded to do just that.
Conference organizer Brandon Speck posted a statement on Facebook today following yesterday’s attack. He claimed that women should not be able to disseminate materials that might offend those men who support sex-roles. He claimed that the women deserved to be attacked for offering materials that contained feminism. He stated that no feminists should be permitted to sell books that men might not like. He said that as a man he had no authority to dictate the behavior of other men who might choose to assault women who offend them. Here is his statement:
Here is the link to the page where his statement is posted:
The attached comments include threats by transgender activists to continue violent attacks against women who promote feminist thought.
I am withholding the names of the women who were attacked until they issue a public statement, which will be published here. The feminists are reported to be terrorized but did not require medical care. No arrests have yet been made. Stay tuned for updates.
*UPDATE* the statement and thread referenced above have been entirely deleted. Here is a link to the page where the former statement was posted:
Lawrence University invokes shocking last minute BAN on Earth Day Keynote Speaker Lierre Keith due to her Feminist views on Gender
April 22, 2013
In a shocking last minute decision Lawrence University representatives no-platformed Deep Green Resistance founding member Lierre Keith from her scheduled Earth Day appearance due to previous feminist comments she has made about gender. Specifically, she was banned from speaking at the university due to her belief that Gender is socially created and not biologically innate.
Keith is the author of The Vegetarian Myth: Food, Justice and Sustainability and a well known writer, Radical Feminist, food activist and environmentalist. Her scheduled speech “Stopping Civilization’s Violence to the Earth” was booked as part of Lawrence’s Greenfire Earth Week Speaking Series.
An event organizer contacted Keith on April 11 with the disturbing news that Lawrence University faculty lecturer Helen Boyd (pen name of Gail Kramer) who is identified in emails as “Professor Helen Boyd-Kramer, a well-known transadvocate” was organizing a campaign to censor Keith’s environmentalist lecture. Boyd-Kramer is the heterosexual wife of transgender and long-time crossdresser, actor Jason Crowl. Boyd-Kramer is the author of “My Husband Betty: Love, Sex and Life with a Crossdresser” and appears on the transgender circuit as a paid speaker describing her experiences as the wife of a transgender man, as well as lecturing in the Gender Studies and Freshman Studies departments at Lawrence. The organizer informed Lierre Keith that Boyd-Kramer was threatening to mount a public protest at the Earth Day event as well as publish an article in the Lawrence University newspaper damning the event unless Lierre agreed to meet with her “in order to have a private conversation about the issue”. Although Keith’s scheduled Earth Day talk had nothing to do with the transgender issue, the organizer stated his fear that “They would diminish the impact of your talk by making you look close-minded and mean, and by shifting the focus of discussion and re-framing your appearance completely.” Lierre was repeatedly asked if her feminist views on gender had “changed”: “we’d love to hear that and the issue will end there.”
No stranger to controversy, and with the strong support of those in the Wisconsin environmentalist community Keith intended to proceed with her appearance as scheduled on Sunday April 21. Two days before the event she was informed that her environmentalist program had been no-platformed at Lawrence University due to her unwillingness to retract her previous, unrelated feminist statements expressing her belief that gender is socially constructed and not biologically innate.
Lawrence University Earth Day organizer Adam James Kranz posted the following message on the event Facebook page announcing that he would personally replace Keith as speaker and present the aspects of Keith’s ideas that he finds “compelling”:
by Greenfire (Notes) on Friday, April 19, 2013 at 2:06pm
From their website “Deep Green Resistance is an analysis, a strategy, and a movement being born, the only movement of its kind.” DGR’s writings have strongly influenced my perspective on environmental issues, and I think their ideas have a lot of valuable contributions to make. They draw deep connections between violence against the land and violence based on class, race, gender, etc. Their analysis puts modern ills in historical context, comparing the tribulations of agricultural life to the hunter-gatherer systems dominant for most of human existence. They make incisive critiques of mainstream modes of activism and reform. Their appraisal of reform-based activism asks us whether we can afford to wait, and, if not, whether we have any alternatives.
There are plenty of intellectual critiques one can and should make of DGR – I did two independent studies last Spring doing just that. However, I feel that DGR’s perspective is very valuable and poses some tough questions to the conventional brand of activism. Lierre is one of the three main leaders and authors behind DGR, and I hoped her lecture would provoke some interesting discussion. The broad, inclusive resistance to oppression and hierarchy that DGR advocates was my own entry point into activist causes beyond environmentalism. I largely relied on their positions on issues I hadn’t bothered to study myself – especially feminism.
This is why I was so disappointed and betrayed to learn that Lierre doesn’t support the trans community in their fight against the same oppressive forces Lierre spends her life combating. In fact, Lierre’s views are deeply offensive and actively transphobic. If anyone is interested in reading her hate-speech, it is quoted here:
and a deconstruction/rebuttal:
Lierre’s views are products of an old trend in eco-feminism that I can’t claim to understand. However, it is not defensible under the shield of intellectual freedom of thought. Her statements go well beyond an analysis that is merely wrong to a level that is actively offensive and disregards the lived experiences of millions of people.
Greenfire is committed to maintaining a safe space for everyone on campus. Hosting Lierre, knowing her opinions and knowing that members of the community know them as well, would disregard the feelings of members of our community, and this is unacceptable. I personally apologize for not making this decision sooner.
Instead of Lierre’s lecture, Greenfire will now host a lecture and discussion forum on radical environmental activism. I will present aspects of DGR’s ideas that I find compelling and try to ask questions that create a productive dialogue about our own tactical choices and analyses. Everyone is welcome to join us. The event will still take place on Sunday, 4/21, at 1 PM, in Steitz 102. Adam Kranz
Lierre has issued the following statement directed at the President of Lawrence University:
I am writing to tell you about an incident on your campus about which you should be concerned.
I am the author of multiple books on environmentalism. A student at Lawrence, xxxxxxx (cc’d here), invited me to speak for Earth Day. The lecture was scheduled for tomorrow, April 21. Yesterday, I received an email from Mr. xxxxxx (pasted below), canceling my appearance because some students take issue with my ideas.
I will get into the content of this disagreement later. My overwhelming point of concern is the purpose of higher education and the defense of the liberal tradition itself. I don’t know if I can state this strongly enough. Universities are supposed to be institutions founded on the bedrock principle of an open and robust exchange of ideas. I am appalled that anyone would be barred from speaking at your school over a disagreement. Intellectual engagement is the entire reason universities exist. It’s also why institutions of higher learning are vitally important to a pluralistic society. The young adults in your care need to understand this principle. If they learn one thing at your school, it should be this: ideas qua ideas are our only defense against the human tendency to fundamentalism with all its attendant horrors.
Mr. xxxxx’s email (pasted below) stated my appearance would be “threatening” and “offensive” to some students. Given that I have threatened no one, and that I am a middle-aged woman with a degenerative disease and no upper-body strength, I think we can set aside the notion that I pose a physical threat to anyone. What they mean is “uncomfortable.” But people don’t go to college to feel comfortable. They go to be challenged. They go—or, they should go—to learn to engage with new ideas, to examine themselves and the world, to interrogate their beliefs and the society around them as deeply as possible. Some of your students are not preparing themselves for citizenship in a pluralistic democracy, which by definition means a civic society of people who hold differing–often, profoundly differing–beliefs. The entire project will rise or fall on how we as a society negotiate those differences. That some of your students don’t understand this–and are, in fact, actively rejecting it–leaves me gravely concerned for the future. That is why I am bringing this to your attention. I hope you share my concern.
To the details of the disagreement. I will try to be brief. I am a feminist. I have spent three decades fighting male violence against women. My analysis is informed by a century and a half of feminist theory and activism. My views are in no way unique. I believe that a social system of male domination starts with human beings who are biologically male or female and creates two social classes of people: men and women. Socialization to either group can be a brutal process.
Men are made by socialization to masculinity. Being a man requires a psychology based on emotional numbness and a dichotomy of self and other. This is also the psychology required by soldiers, which is why I don’t think you can be a peace activist without being a feminist.
Female socialization is a process of psychologically constraining and breaking girls—otherwise known as “grooming”—to create a class of compliant victims. Femininity is a set of behaviors that are, in essence, ritualized submission.
I see nothing in the creation of gender to celebrate or embrace. As a feminist, I am an abolitionist. Patriarchy is a corrupt and brutal arrangement of power, and I want to see it dismantled so that the category of gender no longer exists. This is also my position on race and class. The categories are not natural: they only exist because hierarchical systems of power create them (see, for instance, Audrey Smedley’s book Race in North America). I want a world of justice and equality, where the material conditions that currently create race, class, and gender have been forever overcome.
There are, of course, people who disagree with feminism. In their view, men and women display domination and submission, respectively, not because of social conditions, but because we have different brains. Gendered behavior is natural, they say, a function of our biology. Boys are naturally aggressive and active, while girls are naturally emotional and passive. The claim is often that prenatal hormones create these propensities, and that the wrong hormones can produce the wrong brain. Hence it is possible to have a man’s body with a woman’s brain (which adherents like to call a “lady brain”). Cursory research will reveal the variations and disagreements amongst the genderists. Some, for instance, believe that gender is a matter of costuming—what they call “presentation.” The problem with gender isn’t gender per se, but that there are social constraints on what men can wear. On the other extreme are people who argue that their genitals are a “birth defect” that require surgical removal.
I can’t do justice to the range of genderist beliefs in an email. My point is that I disagree with them, and because of that disagreement I was disinvited from your school. I don’t know what could be more important in a college environment than an examination of social reality and ideas about justice, but that examination has been shut down at Lawrence.
I would urge you to encourage the opposite in your students, for their sakes, certainly, but more importantly in defense of the values central to the liberal tradition. Encountering ideas that differ from one’s own has never hurt anyone; indeed, it is the only way to a better world.
I would be happy to send the text of the talk (which frankly had nothing to do with the subject discussed above) I had planned to give if you have further interest.
Please take a moment to show your support for Lierre Kieth and your support for the great tradition of academic free speech by dropping your own message to Jill Beck, The President of Lawrence University expressing your concern at the following address:
The Press Complaints Commission has issued its ruling following an inquiry into the Julie Burchill article. Transgenders called for the criminalization and censorship of Burchill when she described trans activists who use threats of rape and murder against feminists as “bedwetters in bad wigs”. The title of the article “Transsexuals should cut it out” referred to the ubiquitous harassment, violent threats, and bullying against feminists by transgender activists. You can read her censored article in full HERE.
Commission’s decision in the case of
Two Complainants v The Observer / The Daily Telegraph
The complainants were concerned about a comment article which responded to criticism of another columnist on social networking sites. The article had first been published by The Observer. Following The Observer’s decision to remove the article from its website, it had been republished on the website of The Daily Telegraph. The Commission received over 800 complaints about the article, which it investigated in correspondence with two lead complainants, one for each newspaper.
The complainants considered that the article contained a number of prejudicial and pejorative references to transgender people in breach of Clause 12 (Discrimination) of the Editors’ Code of Practice. They also raised concerns under Clause 1 (Accuracy) that language used by the columnist was inaccurate as well as offensive, and, furthermore that the article misleadingly suggested that the term “cis-gendered” was insulting. Additionally, concerns had been raised that the repeated use of terms of offence had breached Clause 4 (Harassment) of the Code.
The Commission first considered the complaints, framed under Clause 12, that the article had contained a number of remarks about transgender people that were pejorative and discriminatory. It noted that the Observer had accepted that these remarks were offensive, and that it had made the decision to remove the article on the basis that the language used fell outside the scope of what it considered reasonable; however, the Observer denied a breach of Clause 12 because the article had not made reference to any specific individual. Clause 12 states that newspapers “must avoid prejudicial or pejorative reference to an individual’s race, colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation or to any physical or mental illness or disability”. However, the clause does not cover references to groups or categories of people. The language used in the article did not refer to any identifiable individual, but to transgender people generally. While the Commission acknowledged the depth of the complainants’ concerns about the terminology used, in the absence of reference to a particular individual, there was no breach of Clause 12.
The Commission also considered the complaint under the terms of Clause 1, which states that “the press must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted information, including pictures”. Complainants had suggested that the terms used in the article to refer to transgender people were inaccurate or misleading. Whilst the Commission acknowledged this concern, it was clear from the tone of the article that these terms were being used to express an opinion. Whilst many people had found this opinion deeply distasteful and upsetting, the columnist was entitled to express her views under the terms of Clause 1(iii), so long as the statements were clearly distinguished from fact. The same was true in relation to the columnist’s assertion that the term “cis-gendered” is offensive. Viewed in the context of the article as a whole, particularly in light of the fact that the article had been deliberately identified as a comment piece, this was clearly distinguishable as an expression of her opinion about the term rather than a statement of fact about how it is perceived more broadly. This did not constitute a failure to take care over the accuracy of the article, for the purposes of Clause 1(i), and neither was there any significant inaccuracy requiring correction under the terms of Clause 1(ii). There was no breach of Clause 1.
The Commission turned to consider those concerns raised under Clause 4, which states that “journalists must not engage in intimidation, harassment or persistent pursuit”. It made clear, however, that the publication of a single comment piece was not conduct which would engage the terms of Clause 4. There was no breach of the Code.
The Commission acknowledged that the complainants found much of the article offensive. Nonetheless, the terms of the Editors’ Code of Practice do not address issues of taste and offence. The Code is designed to address the potentially competing rights of freedom of expression and other rights of individuals, such as privacy. Newspapers and magazines have editorial freedom to publish what they consider to be appropriate provided that the rights of individuals – enshrined in the terms of the Code which specifically defines and protects these rights – are not compromised. It could not, therefore, comment on this aspect of the complaint further.
Too bad, bedwetters.
[bolding by me-GM]
January 26, 2013
When WordPress.com moves to censor your feminist speech and posts they DO NOT send you an email notification. Instead, they post the notification on the Dashboard of that particular blog when you log in. I would encourage feminist bloggers who have not recently logged into your account to do so and check your Dash for such a notice (like the one I received here at GenderTrender).
Otherwise your blog will be deleted seemingly “out of the blue”. Please check all your blogs at your earliest convenience so that a public campaign can be mounted to save your blog as was done for GenderTrender. Thank you.
January 18, 2013
January 13, 2013
Transsexuals should cut it out
It’s never a good idea for those who feel oppressed to start bullying others in turn
- The Observer, Saturday 12 January 2013
“The brilliant writer Suzanne Moore and I go back a long way. I first met her when she was a young single mother living in a council flat; she took me out to interview me about my novel Ambition (republished by Corvus Books this spring, since you ask) for dear dead City Limits magazine. “I’ve got an entertaining budget of £12.50!” she said proudly. “Sod that, we’re having lobster and champagne at Frederick’s and I’m paying,” I told her. Half a bottle of Bolly later, she looked at me with faraway eyes: “Ooo, I could get to like this…” And so she did.
I have observed her rise to the forefront of this country’s great polemicists with a whole lot of pride – and just a tiny bit of envy. I am godmother to her three brilliant, beautiful daughters. Though we differ on certain issues we will have each other’s backs until the sacred cows come home.
With this in mind, I was incredulous to read that my friend was being monstered on Twitter, to the extent that she had quit it, for supposedly picking on a minority – transsexuals. Though I imagine it to be something akin to being savaged by a dead sheep, as Denis Healey had it of Geoffrey Howe, I nevertheless felt indignant that a woman of such style and substance should be driven from her chosen mode of time-wasting by a bunch of dicks in chicks’ clothing.
To my mind – I have given cool-headed consideration to the matter – a gaggle of transsexuals telling Suzanne Moore how to write looks a lot like how I’d imagine the Black and White Minstrels telling Usain Bolt how to run would look. That rude and ridic.
Here’s what happened. In a book of essays called Red: The Waterstones Anthology, Suzanne contributed a piece about women’s anger. She wrote that, among other things, women were angry about “not having the ideal body shape – that of a Brazilian transsexual”. Rather than join her in decrying the idea that every broad should aim to look like an oven-ready porn star, the very vociferous transsexual lobby and their grim groupies picked on the messenger instead.
I must say that my only experience of the trans lobby thus far was hearing about the vile way they have persecuted another of my friends, the veteran women’s rights and anti-domestic violence activist Julie Bindel – picketing events where she is speaking about such minor issues as the rape of children and the trafficking of women just because she refuses to accept that their relationship with their phantom limb is the most pressing problem that women – real and imagined – are facing right now.
Similarly, Suzanne’s original piece was about the real horror of the bigger picture – how the savagery of a few old Etonians is having real, ruinous effects on the lives of the weakest members of our society, many of whom happen to be women. The reaction of the trans lobby reminded me very much of those wretched inner-city kids who shoot another inner-city kid dead in a fast-food shop for not showing them enough “respect”. Ignore the real enemy – they’re strong and will need real effort and organisation to fight. How much easier to lash out at those who are conveniently close to hand!
But they’d rather argue over semantics. To be fair, after having one’s nuts taken off (see what I did there?) by endless decades in academia, it’s all most of them are fit to do. Educated beyond all common sense and honesty, it was a hoot to see the screaming mimis accuse Suze of white feminist privilege; it may have been this that made her finally respond in the subsequent salty language she employed to answer her Twitter critics: “People can just fuck off really. Cut their dicks off and be more feminist than me. Good for them.”
She, the other JB and I are part of the minority of women of working-class origin to make it in what used to be called Fleet Street and I think this partly contributes to the stand-off with the trannies. (I know that’s a wrong word, but having recently discovered that their lot describe born women as ‘Cis’ – sounds like syph, cyst, cistern; all nasty stuff – they’re lucky I’m not calling them shemales. Or shims.) We know that everything we have we got for ourselves. We have no family money, no safety net. And we are damned if we are going to be accused of being privileged by a bunch of bed-wetters in bad wigs.
It’s been noted before that cyberspace, though supposedly all new and shiny, is plagued by the age-old boredom of men telling women not to talk and threatening them with all kinds of nastiness if they persist in saying what they feel.
The trans lobby is now saying that it wasn’t so much the initial piece as Suzanne’s refusal to apologise when told to that “made” them drive her from Twitter. Presumably she is meant to do this in the name of solidarity and the “struggle”, though I find it very hard to imagine this mob struggling with anything apart from the English language and the concept of free speech.
To have your cock cut off and then plead special privileges as women – above natural-born women, who don’t know the meaning of suffering, apparently – is a bit like the old definition of chutzpah: the boy who killed his parents and then asked the jury for clemency on the grounds he was an orphan.
Shims, shemales, whatever you’re calling yourselves these days – don’t threaten or bully us lowly natural-born women, I warn you. We may not have as many lovely big swinging Phds as you, but we’ve experienced a lifetime of PMT and sexual harassment and many of us are now staring HRT and the menopause straight in the face – and still not flinching. Trust me, you ain’t seen nothing yet. You really won’t like us when we’re angry.”
August 25, 2012
I’m posting this thread from May 2011 because I think it would be useful for us all to reflect on where we have been, and where we are going. I’d like to express my gratitude and appreciation for all the women who have worked so hard and accomplished so much over the past year. All comments are closed to this post. But do stay tuned for an important post and announcement in the coming days. -GM
REDACTEDMay 3 at 9:38am Reply • Report
Ursula PunkMay 3 at 10:38am Reply • Report
I’m so glad you’re looking at this legislation. As a group, I think we should do more of this.
Well, it looks like some of the language has already been removed. YAY!
“GENDER IDENTITY” MEANS A GENDER–RELATED IDENTITY OR APPEARANCE OF AN INDIVIDUAL REGARDLESS OF THE INDIVIDUAL’S ASSIGNED SEX AT BIRTH.
Ok, I think that VISIBILIZING the masc/fem constructs that are being “protected” here is VERY important. You can’t say
a “goob identity” means a goob RELATED identity or appearance.
WHAT IS A GOOB?? Duh. And that’s what I mean by referencing masc/fem. THAT’S what this is about– disembodying masc/fem expression from sexual organs, then codifying it as SACRED.
At this point, any person can appropriate any aspect of masculinity or femininity and demand legal PROTECTION.
REDACTEDMay 3 at 11:05am Reply • Report
May 18, 2012
Radfem 2012 is shaping up to be a groundbreaking conference for females organizing for female liberation. The first three speakers have been announced and are Gail Dines, Sheila Jeffreys, and Pragna Patel. From the RadFem 2012 website:
Gail Dines is a long time radical feminist activist, and a founding member of Stop Porn Culture. She is a Professor in Sociology and Women’s Studies at Wheelock College, Boston, and her publications include Gender, Race and Class in Media (ed.) and Pornography: The production and consumption of inequality. Her most recent book, Pornland: How porn has hijacked our sexuality, was published in 2010 by Beacon Press. Gail lectures widely on the radical feminist critique of pornography, and organises regular conferences and trainings on radical feminist anti-pornography activism.
Sheila Jeffreys is a lesbian feminist who has been an activist against violence against women and the sex industry since the early 1970s. She is Professor in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne, and her many books on the history and politics of sexuality include Anticlimax: A feminist perspective on the sexual revolution, Unpacking Queer Politics and The Industrial Vagina: The political economy of the global sex trade. Her most recent book is Man’s Dominion: The rise of religion and the eclipse of women’s rights, published in 2012 by Routledge. She is the founding member of the Australian branch of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women.
Pragna Patel is a founding member of Southall Black Sisters and Women Against Fundamentalism. Having left SBS in 1993 to train and practice as a solicitor, she returned in 2009 as Director. She has been centrally involved in some of SBS’ most important campaigns around domestic violence, immigration and religious fundamentalism. She has also written extensively on race, gender and religion. Her many publications include essays in Black British Feminism: A Reader (ed. Heidi Mirza) and From Homebreakers to Jailbreakers (ed. Rahila Gupta) and Feminist Judgements from Theory to Practice (ed. Hunter, McGlynn and Rackley).
More speakers will be announced soon.
Anti-female activists are already organizing against the rights of females to hold a conference for females. Besides the usual conservative MRA types, some of the anti-female forces against this conference include transgender activists and pro-prostitution pro-trafficking activists who claim that females must be prevented from organizing and meeting together in female-only spaces.
Controversial anti-lesbian University of New Hampshire representative Joelle Ruby Ryan, the male transgender who recently forwarded the theories that “lesbian erasure” is code for “trans bashing” and that males are justified in wanting lesbians dead, has dedicated his entire twitter to the idea that even allowing females to meet and organize together is a form of “hate” against males. (The anti-gay University of New Hampshire rep previously supported a series of seminars called “Breaking Through The Cotton Ceiling” which were male-only sessions devoted to organizing around the “problem” of lesbians not wanting sex with males, and formulating reparative/coercive strategies against lesbians, who the males claimed were “discriminating” against males by not wanting sexual relations with them). Ryan has called for flooding the RadFem2012 website with anti-female spam emails.
The once popular F-Word blog (the “word-too-shameful-to-be-named” is purportedly “Feminist”) has openly declared that female activism “oppresses us all” by excluding males, and suggests that its readers boycott the event.
Commenters on Democratic Underground offer that females organizing around female concerns are “sickening”, “disgusting”, to do so is anti-male “bigotry”.
The twitter hashtag #RadFem2012 is chock full of comments expressing alarm that female liberationists are meeting to discuss female concerns. “I’m kinda surprised #RadFem2012 allow *any* kids or mums, considering that’s all a tad difficult without a bloke being involved somewhere.” Says one. “Smash RadFem2012” says another. One suggests organizing a UK version of Camp Trans, which is a group of anti-lesbian and anti-female activists that conducts harassment, vandalism and terrorism against the lesbian and female-only US Michfest Women’s Music Festival.
And all this within hours of the first three speakers being announced. Clearly even one group of females organizing for female liberation is so threatening to males and handmaidens of the patriarchy that they would like to “smash” and otherwise prevent such a meeting by any means necessary. Anti-female activists have started letter-writing campaigns against the venue holding the event- again WITHIN HOURS of the first speaker announcements.
The rights of lesbians and females –even the basic human right to meet and congregate- are UNDER SEIGE by conservatives, religionists, genderists, anti-gay activists, pimps and pro-trafficking forces, and now even some of those that call themselves liberal or “fun feminists”. Make no mistake. The outlawing of female gatherings and political organizing is NOT a “third world” concern. The very right of females to meet and gather in lesbian or female spaces is under siege by anti-lesbian and anti-female forces.
I urge every female, every lesbian, and every male who supports the rights of females to lend this conference your attention, your attendance, or your financial contribution as appropriate.
From the RadFem2012 website “Why RadFem 2012”:
“RadFem 2012 has developed from the passionate conviction that a UK-based radical feminist conference is badly needed and long overdue.
‘Radical feminism creates an original political and social theory of women’s oppression, and strategies for ending that oppression which come from women’s lived experiences.’ (Rowland and Klein, 1996).
RadFem 2012 puts women, and women’s lived experiences, at its centre. The event takes place in the context of epidemic levels of male violence against women, the ongoing expansion of pornography and the sex industry, cultural misogyny as an everyday reality and the devastating effects of neoliberal economic policies and environmental destruction on women across the globe.
It takes place in a historical moment where structural analyses of oppression have been marginalised, and where those who are oppressed are blamed for their own oppression. At a time when a powerful sex industry lobby has adopted the language of feminism in order to try to persuade us that the sexual objectification of women is a route to ‘empowerment’ and that women’s involvement in pornography or prostitution is simply a matter of individual choice.
Radical feminism is a revolutionary politics for the liberation of all women from male domination. Radical feminists neither seek ‘equality’ with men within a fundamentally oppressive system, nor simply to extend women’s range of choices whilst leaving that oppressive system intact. Radical feminists are engaged in the struggle to end all forms of male violence, and for the liberation of all women from patriarchal oppression. In short, we are engaged in a struggle for total social transformation. In Catherine Mackinnon’s phrase, radical feminism is ‘feminism unmodified’.
RadFem 2012 aims to provide a space to discuss and develop radical feminist theory and action, rooted in the realities of women’s lives. We take the necessity of women’s autonomous organising as a given. In doing so, we recognise the additional oppressions faced by many women, and are committed to building an explicitly anti-racist and anti-oppressive movement that is inclusive and supportive of all women, across differences of race, ethnicity, nationality, class, disability, sexuality, age and caring responsibilities. We celebrate the power of women uniting and organising collectively.
Many of us involved in radical feminist organising feel isolated, even within the wider feminist movement. In our experience, the need for an autonomous women’s movement and the value of women-only organising are seldom recognised. Women-only spaces are either rare, non-existent or under siege. Radical feminism is often misrepresented and maligned. The trend towards post-modernism and queer theory have marginalised feminist critiques of patriarchy, and rendered lesbian feminism all but invisible.
RadFem 2012 aims to provide a space where women can connect to reflect, learn, plan and take action.”
May 11, 2012
It deserves to be widely read and warrants its own post. From Lesley213:
I am a radical feminist and a lesbian. I hate the Trans project and how men invade women and lesbian space because they are “really women” or “really lesbians”. I hate the inherent misogyny in the Trans position.
And yet at an individual level I understand the desire of women to transition. My dirty secret is that I have felt it too.
I was not the typical tomboy as a child that many lesbians profess to be. I played with dolls, played happily with other girls and embarassingly for my mother with her feminist ideas, refused to wear trousers as I found skirts more comfortable. This all changed when I hit puberty. Although I was happy to get my periods and see my body become that of a woman, I found the social aspects of puberty very hard.
Suddenly all the girls seemed to only be talking about hair, makeup, clothes and how to get a boyfriend. I had no interest in any of this and felt like a real outsider. I began from 12 to hang around with boys and had a boyfriend from 12 and boys who were friends. I felt like I could fit in more with boys. There was no talk of make up, clothes or getting boyfriends. I look physically at this time, what would have been characterised as a “nerd”. Sensible haircut, jeans (skirts were no longer appealing when I was supposed to wear uncomfortable court shoes and shave my legs), t shirts and jumpers.
It is also at this time I developed my alter ego – Stuart. In all my daydreams I was Stuart. He grew up with me and I day dreamed about my life as a teenage boy and then a man. Of course like all daydreams, Stuart was more popular and better looking than my real female self, but he didn’t always have an easy time in my daydreams. However, crucially he didn’t experience any of the everyday sexism that I found so hard to take as a young teenage women. Every woman reading this will know what I mean by this. Stuart was a big part of my life until literally a year ago when he just vanished from my day dreams. At the time I didn’t understand why, but I think now that I was beginning to understand a year ago at some level that Stuart was a device to deal with my anger around everyday sexism – a sort of, what if daydream.
I have never talked about any of this in real life as I am deeply ashamed of this, so apologies if all of this seems really disjointed and poorly thought out. Its hard to put something into words for the first time.
But the truth is I think if in my early teenage years I had been presented with the discourse of Trans to explain my feelings, I could have easily transitioned.
I have read radical feminists talking about FtoT hating their female bodies and hating their female themselves. Of course at a fundamental level, undergoing cosmetic surgery is a self hating procedure to undergo. But I never hated my female body, beyond the usual insecurities of any teenage girl and young woman. I don’t know if those who actually transition feel differently, but I have always liked having breasts and a female body. But the things that did make me think I would rather be a man were simply that life would have been easier. I wouldn’t have had to deal with all the everyday sexism that as a teenage girl made me so angry. I wouldn’t have had to deal with on an everyday basis
- sexist teachers who treated girls and boys differently
- my parents who in spite of what they professed did treat my brother better. Yes we both had equal chores for example, but whereas he rarely did them, I was made to do mine
- judgements and pressures from other girls that I largely ignored, to wear make up, prettify myself, etc
- pressure to behave in a certain way now that I was a teenage girl, rather than just behave as myself
- casual judgements from men on whether I was attractive or not
I could go on and on, but you all know what I mean. I basically wanted to go back to being treated as an individual and not be faced with being treated as a lesser being with all the pressure to conform to being an acceptable teenage girl and then women.
So what stopped me framing these feelings as “really being a man inside”.
1. I think first of all the Trans project was pretty much in its infancy when I was young and at my most vulnerable. And certainly FtoT was largely unheard of, everyone in the media was MtoT. I was born in 1969 to give this context. As I was a younger adult, anything I read on FtoT made it clear that the surgical solutions around creating a penis were pretty rudimentary as well – and basically I didn’t want to be a freak – someone who in the surface looked like a man but had no penis or a pretty poor substitute for one.
2. I knew I wasn’t a man and that it was not really possible to become a man. If it had been, I would have been much more tempted.
3. Feminism – although I have only come to radical feminism in the last few years along with an understanding of the Trans project, I did have enough of an understanding of feminism as a teenager to recognise that my feelings were really about, as I would have expressed it then, the sexist society I was growing up in, rather than about my own individual feelings and “gender identity”.
4. I have the intelligence and self awareness to analyse and challenge my own internal feelings. Many women, including those who might be much more academically intelligent than myself, often have what I would see as quite a low understanding of their own feelings and behaviour. I generally do understand why am I doing something, even if it is for shameful reasons.
I do think I might have been influenced to go down the transition route if I had been surrounded both by the discourse and by individuals who were telling me that my feelings were really because I was a man underneath and that it was perfectly possible to change my body to that of a man’s.
I also do understand FtoT who then access lesbian space. I have had so much support, good times, a feeling of being accepted and generally nurtured in lesbian space. By nurtured and accepted I don’t mean in a support group type of way. I simply mean being allowed to be myself and accepted for that – a simple thing, but it has felt very powerful. If I had transitioned I suspect I would be wanting to access lesbian only space. it is literally about trying to get the best of both worlds.
I am not butch and so the lesbian discourse around being butch rather than being trans has never appealed to me. All I have ever wanted was to be myself. It terrifies me how the Trans discourse is now being sold to teenage girls and women as a solution to internal and societal conflicts. And it angers me that feminists are silencing objections to the Trans discourse as Transphobia.
Hot off the presses- The Ms. Magazine press, no less, comes this anti-feminist screed from everyone’s favorite “Cocky” misogynist Julia Serano. Serano, a male, explains to Ms. readers how feminists should not focus on female concerns.
“Trans feminism—that is, transgender perspectives on feminism, or feminist perspectives on transgender issues—is one of many so-called “third-wave” feminisms. Its origins are closely linked with other feminist submovements—specifically, sex-positive feminism, postmodern/poststructuralist feminism, queer theory and intersectionality. These strands of feminism represent a move away from viewing sexism as an overly simplistic, unilateral form of oppression, where men are the oppressors and women are the oppressed, end of story.”
That’s right folks! In Serano’s version of what he calls “Trans-feminism” (the prefix means: “across,”“beyond,” “through,” “changing thoroughly,” “transverse, ”the “crossing over” of feminism into it’s opposite) the fight against male oppression of females is obsolete! Because such oppression doesn’t really exist! At least not for guys like him. What next? “Strands” of racial justice that “move away from viewing racism as an overly simplistic unilateral form of oppression, where whites are oppressors and people of color are the oppressed’? Because “cis-ethnic” people oppress the whites donchaknow! “Strands” of economic justice that “move away from viewing class as an overly simplistic unilateral form of oppression, where the wealthy are oppressors and poor people are the oppressed”? Because “cis-impoverished” people oppress the wealthy trans-poverished donchaknow.
Serano calls for an end to a movement that centralizes the rights and concerns of female people. Serano, a male, also claims that people of the female sex have no common class experiences based on sex.
“The myth that there is some kind of universal women experience was debunked by women of color, among others, long ago. All of us have different life histories, sexism impacts each of our lives somewhat differently and each of us is privileged in some ways but not others. Some feminists may obstinately insist that cis women have it far worse than trans women, or that traditional sexism is far worse than cissexism, or heterosexism, but the point of feminism is not to engage in this kind of Oppression Olympics. Rather, the point is to challenge societal sexism and other forms of marginalization. This is what trans feminists are focused on doing.”
Dang females obstinately insisting on organizing together about specifically FEMALE concerns! You obstinate laydees you! (shakes man fist).
Hahaha! Leave it to a male- a female fetishizing and female-impersonating male at that- to claim those born female have no common universal experiences as an oppressed class BASED ON SEX. Duh.
A female liberation movement should not centralize females why? Ohhh, because there are OTHER forms of oppression in the world tooooo! “There are also other forms of marginalization prevalent in our society, such as racism, classism and ableism.” Ohhhhhhh. Why fight racism when: poverty! Female issues should never be centralized in a social justice movement when there are OTHER injustices in the world. Save the whales, yo.
What spurred his sexist anti-female essay? His assertion that females have no right to discuss gender and its relationship to our women’s liberation movement, and his complaint about such a previous discussion hosted on the Ms. Blog here: http://msmagazine.com/blog/blog/2012/03/20/future-of-feminism-transfeminism-and-its-conundrums
“Dove-Viebahn’s post gives credence to those feminists who refuse to acknowledge cissexism or intersectionality, and instead frame trans issues solely in terms of male privilege.”
Seriously, can you imagine these doods writing on economic justice sites about how the “cis-poor” oppress the rich, or racial justice sites about how the “cis-blacks” oppress whites in blackface, or how “cis-disabled” people oppress those with an amputation fetish? Oh HELL no. Their asses would be kicked off (or laughed off) the sites quicker than you can say BULLLLSHIT. But when it comes to FEMALES and FEMALE concerns then hey, let’s hear what the male has to say about our little FEMALE LIBERATION MOVEMENT. And how we’re “doing it wrong” and oppressing males with our “Cis- Femaleness”. Mean man-hating feminists! (fist shake)
If, as Serano asserts, oppression based on being born female doesn’t exist, if there is no universal female class experience based on being female-bodied, if there is no need for a movement to dismantle male supremacy, Then WHY LORD WHY do these guys endlessly, relentlessly try to STOP FEMALES from organizing around FEMALE concerns?? If it’s so unimportant, then why do they care? Hahaha.
I think we all know the answer to that one. He says it himself. Transgenderism is incompatible with a liberation movement for FEMALES.
Damn “obstinant” and “refusing” women! Stop thinking about yourselves! (shakes man fist)