Saturday Night Double Feature : “Trans Enough” Edition

February 4, 2012

25 Responses to “Saturday Night Double Feature : “Trans Enough” Edition”

  1. Bev Jo Says:

    Thank you, Gallus. This is just so strange — why are they even feeling pressure to identify as trans at all or to be more trans? Who is doing this to them? Where is it coming from? Why are they vulnerable to it? And most of them seem SO feminine, so why is this an issue for them at all? It is just bizarre to me that such feminine women are identifying as any kind of men. But maybe not, actually, since I believe Butches are the least male.

    The next video of the one who showed her surgered chest in such detai is so bizarre tool. I can’t imagine any Butch I’ve known wanting to have her chest seen at all, let alone make a video showing it. (I talk about this because of the myth that most F2Ts are/were Butch.)

    I also wonder if a lot of this is young women wanting to be extreme/radical and to rebel against what they think of as “normal” –but where once we/they were truly radical, full of excitement at discovering feminism and recognizing and challenging the lies of patriarchy, sharing support with other women, coming out and creating wonderful Lesbian communities, now they go into a cult that is the opposite of radical. It reminds me of the cult that veganism and vegetarianism became for so many women, where they measure and criticize who is more or less, and where it becomes such an all-consuming, evangelical part of their identity that some end up threatening other women, cutting off friendships, and destroying radical feminist groups. Both seem like a rebellion against what they grew up with, but for the trans-identified, they don’t seem to realize that that they are moving closer to assimilation rather than further away. Trendy is never radical.

    • Nicky Says:

      Bev,
      That’s a common thing within college campus’s and within Gay straight alliance groups. I have seen women in GSA’s who identify as either gender queer, Lesbian, Butch or trans. Though in the GSA I am in, Trans seem to be a rare minority, though the more common is either Lesbian, Butch or Gender Queer. It’s rare to see a Trans on college campus and even much more rarer Intersex people as well. The most common thing your’ll see on GSA’s are Gay, lesbian, Bisexual, Butch & Gender Queer.

  2. FeistyAmazon Says:

    These are WOMEN…these ARE NOT MEN! And they want to reconcile their Femaleness with the straitjacketed roles expected of women…so they think if they identify as trans, it will give them that breathing room to dress and act the way they want in a FEMALE body, nor do they want to take on and ape the worst of male stereotypes….but sheesh, WHAT IS WRONG WITH just being Butch, tomboy, Lesbian, or just plain androgynous AND FEMALE without ever feeling you gotta be on some stage to transition? I see it as a rebellion against the worst excesses of the trans community, but NO FEMALE or Dyke pride. And yes, some are nondykes too, and tomboy, butchy, what have you…rebellious against femininization, femininity and stereotyical hetero female roles!

    What insanity. It makes me so scared for our Dyke and Butch Dyke future, much less the future of ANY woman who rebels against sex role programming! Brave new world of drugs, hormones, but first and foremost BRAINWASHING.
    -MasterAmazon

  3. FeistyAmazon Says:

    Damn, the second one, definitely a girl, in every sense of the word, including the hair, the youth, the lack of maturity, and especially after watching her in her video showing her flat post-op chest with the surgery scars, and showing it off..DEFINITELY narcissitic and self absorbed, like the rest of the trans who gotta have their youtube videos on their transition process! These women ARE NOT BUTCH…not in ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM, especially this one, which is probably why so many transition! They think going into ‘manhood’, surgery bought manhood, and male posturing, will bring them liberation from their female transition. She names this doctor, and maybe next, we should be going after these doctors and exposing them for mutilating such young female bodies..she practically looks like a 15 year old!
    -FeistyAmazon

  4. Ashura Says:

    Yes, trendy is not radical and these women are cowards since being themselves does not make them less of a woman.

    Actually, the Trans people who claim to be homosexual who are really heterosexual ministrelizes the real homosexual people.

  5. Purplerage Says:

    Bev, I’d hate to be these young women growing up in this day and age. Many of them may indeed be heterosexual, but may truly feel that they must be ”trans” and at some level are desparately trying to escape from what is held up culturally as female now with the extremnities of sex roles being reinforced to the absolute detriment of the autonomy and humanity of the female sex. It could actually also be because of this hyper-pornified culture and the complete and total debasement of the female body. Phallic violent acts males practice against the female body encouraged and normalized, males hatred of the natural female body – expecting it to look from the waist down like a pre-pubescent girl and from the waist up like a silicone Barbie sex doll and the heteromale sense of phallic entitlement to every part of the female anatomy and the belief that it’s his birthright.

    Trans ”subculture”(?) may feel like a truly safe haven and in so many ways comforting to them. It may allow them to freely express a number of things that they don’t feel able to do elsewhere i.e. hatred of being female and/or Lesbian, their disassociation from their female body (the biological reality of what that means here and now for them in western cultures) without being challenged by others, instead to be supported and have their feelings backed up, no matter how contradictory. They also get the closest they ever will to the status of ”sacred male” as they will NEVER be excepted as male by biological male standards and dictates in the heteropatriarchal world at large, hell, even heteromales struggle to meet those vile dictates!!

    I remember how easy it was when I was young and confused to have completely contradictory ideas and feelings about being female/Lesbian in this male-supremacist hell hole of a world, however, I was lucky enough to have access to an abundance of Radical Feminist/Lesbian Radical Feminist books which were still readily available then from my local library to help me slowly (and sometimes very painfully) to work things out, to give me a political vocabulary to (at first) name my own experiences of being female/Lesbian in this world etc. and take it on from there to thinking macroscopically. Tragically, things are just so different now for young women with so little available to them that is female-loving, infact, the female-loving and female-centredness is SO absent now it hurts.

    As ”trans-I-dentified” these young women have the all purpose fall back terms ”transphobe” or ”cis-priviledged” etc. to cancel out what few dissenting female voices there may be, whose questions make them feel uncomfortable and profoundly threaten what they feel to be their true sense of self. Ironically, they are as females, yet again subsumed within a very much male dominated and controlled set of politics which worships ”man and his works”. Yes, I’m sure it’s a fad for some, because everything, every aspect of human expression in this mega corporate-capitalist culture has been commodified, and packaged, repackaged and consumerized as some form of ”fad” to express our individuality, but sense of belonging dontcha know! In so many ways (to put it simplistically) this makes I-dentity politics/lifestyle very much a corporate product don’t you think?

    Western Lesbian culture (which once upon a time wasn’t a consumerist lifestyle) and politics have been attacked on all sides, think how female-centred Lesbian culture was in the seventies as compared to now, gay male culture has grown only stronger by comparison (although there has been a selling out with regards to the original liberation politics and analyses).

    Anyway, I am rambling again – I apologize if I haven’t articulated myself nearly as well as I’d like. I’ve just touched upon things very briefly that I know to be extremely messy and complex as it’s a very emotive subject and deeply personal to all those concerned. However the ”personal IS politcal” and ”hurting feelings” shouldn’t cancel out critiquing something that is impacting on so many young women now that it needs to be addressed.

    • la redactora Says:

      Yes, my generation did not invent these values, and we did not invent transsexualism or hatred of lesbians, they merely took these to the next logical level.

      “Camp,” “drag,” queer, bdsm, porn, “gender-bending,” “fag-hags,” “bi-sexual,” male-centrism,* these were all existent cultural trends for most of the twentieth century (and some of these even well before that).

      But they really took off in the mainstream in the late seventies thanks to the male-centric “gay rights” movement and to the expansion of capitalist mass media, and “academics” [Sic!] like Foucault and Butler.

      These women likely learned all they needed to know from films, books, school, and older friends and family members. Narcissistic, yes, ignorant, yes, commercial, yes, but to blame? Not entirely.

      *If you combine these all together you get “third wave feminism.”

  6. SheilaG Says:

    The boring narcissism of it all.

  7. RoseVerbena Says:

    To me, this is all an assault against nature and the beautiful, perfect bodies that nature gave them.

    What’s wrong with being YOURSELF in the body evolution gave you at birth?

    There’s no gratitude, serenity, graceful acceptance, just this obsessive urge to tinker and hack at what is a perfectly natural and healthy body.

    It’s pathetic, really. Sad and pathetic. That doctors and surgeons collude in this self-mutilation is evil parading in a cloak of being “helpful”.

  8. Bev Jo Says:

    I know what you mean, Purple, but yet, it is still so much easier for these women than what many of us grew up with — not one pro-Lesbian book or film. Lesbians in the media killed themselves or were portrayed as abusive. Now, beloved, popular Lesbians can be seen every day on TV. What a difference that would have made for me being afraid that loving my first lover was destroying her life. It can never be as bad as it was then.

    Our best, most radical Lesbian Feminist writing is hard to find, but it does exist. And these young women are clearly in some kind of community to even be identifying as trans, which means they do see some real Lesbians who are staying Lesbians.

    Feisty, Brownstein is in SF. You should see the horrific grotesque huge mechanical-looking sculpture he has in his lobby. It looks like a robot caricature of a woman — kind of like what he thinks he’s “creating.” He is making a fortune off cutting of women’s breasts.

    • Purplerage Says:

      I do take your point Bev. I grew up loving females and knowing I only wanted to be with females in total isolation (no support whatsoever), and was attacked over many years as ”the lesbian” (this is not, of course, the word that was used!) of my secondary school.

      Sadly never-het Lesbians are outliers, and my point is that there must be a reason why there has been an explosion of ”female-to-trans” during the last 15 yrs or so, and why they are so extremely female/Lesbian-hating and so intensely male-identified?

      Many may well indeed be narcissistic, corporate consumerist culture IS the selling of narcissism – the cult of self. However, as nothing occurs in a vacuum I can’t bring myself to believe that this is just some predominantly white, middle class, female teenage/twenty something indulgent phase they’re going through. Something is deeply wrong and so rotten the stench has become too foul to ignore.

  9. Bev Jo Says:

    Yes, Purplerage, we are a tiny minority, and I’ve been told in a lot of different ways that most women and Lesbians just do not want us to exist — or we should be quiet. Or growing up alone and abused for being a young Lesbian is “lucky” compared to growing up as one of the girls who taunted or ostracized us.

    You are right, something else is definitely going on to explain the trans cult suddenly involving so many women — especially since there doesn’t seem to be much interaction between M2Ts and F2Ts. So what has happened? I definitely believe that some right wing government influence is there somewhere, because I’ve seen that before. But how have so many women gotten sucked in?

    I wonder if some is a midguided reaction to the increase of extreme male-invented femininity in Lesbian communities? Certainly most Lesbians I see completely pass as het. It used to be that most Lesbians in this area that I knew looked like Lesbians. Now most don’t and I hear criticisms of those who do. If someone very feminine just has short hair, she’s called “Butch.”

    There is almost no awareness of sexism, female-hatred, Lesbian-hatred, etc. I rarely hear the word “Lesbian” mentioned in this community full of Lesbians. Lesbians don’t know how to refer to each other and themselves. Two lovely Lesbians started referring to each other as “father and son.” They are affectionate friends, but it’s sad that that is what they have come to. I don’t really understand it, but I think it’s because the female terms (laden with hetness) don’t feel natural to them.

    If there was enough money and means it could be turned around, but it would be a lot of work. It would mean organizing events that are for Lesbians with clear statements about no trans, and with true information about feminism that no one is getting anywhere else. But money would be needed to counter the harassments and boycotts.

  10. BadDyke Says:

    I don’t know why things have got so bad. Part of the whole backlash against feminism, and gender stereotypes do seem to have become stronger.
    Now that issues aren’t as blatantly discriminatory as they once were, girls have been lulled into a false sense of ‘equality’ by equal pay acts etc, you can have any job you want now (with the implication that if you CAN’T get the job, what is at fault is you not the system),…….given that girls now supposedly have equal opportunities, who are they to blame now? It’s their fault if they don’t fit, not the system they are trying to fit into.

    On the surface, cosmetically, (aha! loaded word there!), things are better. But in this society now with all the opportunities their mothers fought for, being a lesbian is still too scary? Perhaps that’s it, we’re told it’s ALL BETTER now,so if something is still wrong, the problem is YOU, not society. Perhaps easier to stand outside and fight when the issues were so blatant — but harder now when on the surface, we’re all equal.

    The big public problems have been sorted, the legislation is there, and anything else reduces to the personal not the political. Not women as a sex class, but individual freedom to sculpt your body as you supposedly want to. How can you say you are oppressed any more, you have equal pay and gay marriage etc, so any problems are individual, so not fitting gender stereotypes (when so many others seem to do so), means YOU must be wrong and need adjusting, not the stereotypes or the whole system. Plus if they aren’t getting feminism as something now and relevant, what is left for those who don’t fit? Fit any way you can, because fitting is so much better than trying to FIGHT the system when no one else seems to be doing so. Trans rights are at least a NEW thing to fight for, when everyone is saying that equal rights for women are a done deal, and equal rights for gays almost here.

    The patriarchy with a better public relations job is harder to fight, because it’s put on a smiley face, although just as ugly underneath.

  11. KittyBarber Says:

    What sort of strange bubble are these young women living in, that they can actually believe they are passing, or ought to pass, as men? How can one become angry at a waitress for addressing her as a female, when anyone with working vision and one hemisphere of a brain can see that, while somewhat flat-chested and rather oddly dressed, THIS IS CLEARLY A YOUNG WOMAN? How horrible! What oppression! Oh, the suffering!

    Enter another delusional ‘transman’ or ‘transwoman,’ who have been convinced by a cabal of surgeons, therapists, and peers that they actually LOOK and ought to be ADDRESSED as something they are not.

    Oh brave new world, that has such people in ‘t!

  12. BadDyke Says:

    “How can one become angry at a waitress for addressing her as a female, ”

    Indeed. If they REALLY believed what some say they believe, that we all should be treated with respect, then why not treat this person with respect who made an honest ‘error’?

    Because they don’t want to be treated as a human being, they want to be treated different, because they want to be treated as a MAN. And rather than admit that they’re just not passing very well, then blame everyone else instead for not being able to read their supposedly innate inner maleness and maleness oozing out of every pore. People just make quick assessments as to whether someone is male or female (sex) based on current social conventions as to dress etc, and visible secondary sexual characteristics. Conventions that are easily confused if you refuse to do the whole gender thing — the number of times I’ve been mis-pronouned because I shave my head! I don’t get all upset, I think it’s funny cos it shows how daft and narrow conventions are.
    Because if you really believe in equality, it shouldn’t MATTER because you want to be treated with respect as a human being. If they think you’re a girl, so what, unless you know they’ll charge you more or spit in your tea!

  13. Bev Jo Says:

    Kitty and Bad, you are so right. It’s beyond that they want to be perceived as different than what they are, and that they are so very feminine (clearly female Butches who don’t have exaggerated feminine mannerisms but have large breasts are often called “sir” and hate it) — these women, like the men who insist they are women and Lesbians, want to be treated as “special.” These women want male privilege. They believe they have sacrificed for it (what I don’t know, but they are so entitled) and, damn it, everyone should give them special treatment.

    The men have bizarre fantasies of all the special treatment that they think women get (and ignore the oppression, humiliation, rape, lower pay, SEXISM that real women get) and they are furious that we don’t all acknowledge what they’ve given up to “be” us. We are expected to be grateful. (These men know full well how women too often respond without thinking to give men what they demand, as women are trained and expected to do, and punished for not doing.) When we are not only not grateful, but reject them and dare to say “no” to them, they are beyond outraged. They threaten us, and would kill us if they could.

    Do either the men or the women playing at “changing sex” consider why they think they should get special treatment? And why so outraged at anyone who just sees them as what/who they really are?

    Again, I don’t know any Butch who is at all pleased at being thought of as male. We don’t get privilege from it — it’s insulting and humiliating.

  14. fmnst Says:

    I agree with you, BevJo, these women want male privilege.

    I think a few things are going on here.

    First, they seem to be pleading for acceptance as trans.

    They seem desperate to be trans, as if not only is it cool to *be* trans, but that it is downright not cool and not socially acceptable to *not* be trans.

    I think this has to do with a continuum of what’s been considered uncool for radical, hip, college-age women since.

    So here it is, my take on…

    A Recent Herstory of Uncool, for Radical, Hip, College-Age Young Women

    1975: Not Feminist = Not Cool

    1980: Not a Radical Feminist = Not Cool
    Not Reading Women of Color if You’re White = Not Cool

    1985: Not Lesbian = Not Cool

    1990: Not Pro-LGBT, Not an AIDS Volunteer = Not Cool
    Not Butch = Not Cool

    1995: Feminist = Not Cool
    Not Butch- or Femme-Identified = Not Cool

    2000: No Tats or Piercings = Not Cool

    2005: Not Pro-Trans = Not Cool

    2012: Not Trans = Not Cool

    These women are desperate to avoid being thought of as not cool, not hip. D-e-s-p-e-r-a-t-e. Pleading. Demanding. Asserting Their Rights To Be Considered Trans or Male.

    Being one’s own sex is so yesterday! A conventional, boring, backward, out-of-step-with-the-times Loooosah!

    These young women don’t want to have to pry themselves from things about being female, or being socialized as female, that they like or feel comfortable with. In other words, they are acknowledging that they would have to not be true to their feelings to totally pass or be accepted as men. So they want to be accepted as men while hanging on to those things about their female experience or body that they like or don’t want to lose/give up.

    In a way, this is a good thing.

    They are acknowledging they don’t entirely want to be what men are supposed to be. But clearly, they feel pressure to reject being female, and in some ways dislike being female. Perhaps this is a sign of the turning of the tide of the trans trend. Perhaps in a few years, college women will once again say it is ok to be female, and actually assert their right to be.

    And fewer will lose their breasts to this male trans cult that hates nature and women.

    I can only hope.

  15. BadDyke Says:

    “Again, I don’t know any Butch who is at all pleased at being thought of as male. We don’t get privilege from it — it’s insulting and humiliating.”

    I agree about the not getting privilege, and you’re never quite sure what someones reaction is going to be when they discover they have made an error, and some men can get quite threatening.

    I guess I’ve just got used to it, I don’t feel that insulted any more.

    But yes – special treatment! We are expected to follow THEIR rules as to how we name or address things — call them he because they want it, even if we can clearly see or know that they’re not biologically male, and think it is important to US that they’re not. If we are to have the power of naming taken away from us, we’ve all seen that happen before.

    Seems everybody else personal truths matter apart from OUR group truths as women and lesbians. Now, we’re supposed to forget that F2Ts are still female, and we’re supposed to accept men who think they are women.

    Individualism, the politics of entitlement, and everyone is supposed to bend over backwards and accept whatever they supposedly need to make them feel comfortable, no matter how uncomfortable and dangerous it is to the women, because (we know it of old), WHAT WE THINK DOESN’T COUNT.

  16. Maya Says:

    It’s extremely disheartening to hear such harsh words from a community that is supposed to be so loving. As a queer woman and a feminist I am sad that the queer community is still holding on to ridiculous gender roles that allow them to call out who is too female to be male. I understand the concern that some are having about young girls trying to escape the plight of a woman in America, and in the world. This is something we should definitely be concerned about.That is also a sex education issue that we need to take up with the government. With that being said, it sounds like a lot of these people just don’t know all of the options a human being is capable of. Gender queer, gender fluid, and transvestites are all really great starts for people who want to play with gender. Some people like it as a performance, some like it for sexual thrill, some people just feel different about their gender daily. The first video is right, you should not make people feel bad about not being trans enough. Or not gay enough. The LGBTQ community is so brutal about people that do not follow specific guidelines of queerness when the wonderful thing about being queer is that there are no guidelines. It’s the freedom of enjoying life as you would like to. The LBGTQ community is just as discriminatory as any other community in the world. We need to take a step back and examine ourselves and accept people just like we want to be accepted.

  17. GallusMag Says:

    “…the queer community is still holding on to ridiculous gender roles that allow them to call out who is too female to be male.”

    What exactly does that mean Maya? “too female to be male”. Please explain. Thanks!

    Also, to my knowledge no one in this thread is a member of the “queer” community.

  18. Maya Says:

    “too female to be male” is in reference to the comments about the people in the video being too feminine for it to be an issue for them.

    I’m sorry I should’ve clarified what I mean by queer. I use queer as an umbrella term for anything or person non-heteronormative. So, when I say queer community, it also applies to the LGBTQ community.

    • GallusMag Says:

      Sorry Maya- still not getting your “too female to be male ” critique and your complaint about the comments here. Not being snarky- seriously don’t get what you are so upset about.
      “…in reference to the comments about the people in the video being too feminine for it to be an issue for them.”

      What comments are you referring to, and people being too feminine for WHAT to be “an issue” for them exactly? I’m assuming your good faith here and would love to understand your perspective.

      Does anyone else understand what Maya is saying?

      • la redactora Says:

        Why are they vulnerable to it? And most of them seem SO feminine, so why is this an issue for them at all? It is just bizarre to me that such feminine women are identifying as any kind of men.

        I think this is what Maya is referring to, the first comment by Bev Jo.

      • GallusMag Says:

        Ahhh! Thank you la redactora! Now I get it. I agree with Maya- whether females are “feminine” or not bears no reflection on the fact that being “treated as female” is a horrible fate for females.
        Thank you for explaining. I totally agree.


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