LG, bt

——– Original Message ——–
From: Callie <CallieATQueerBitch.com>
To: cdtga1@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [cdtga1] LG, bt
Date: 17/06/2006 9:24 AM

Heard Libby Post’s commentary on WAMC yesterday.

She says she wants to talk about “Top Ten Reasons LGBT people have to be proud of being who we are.”

What I find amazing is that while she uses the words “gay” and “lesbian” over and over, she never once uses the word “bisexual” or “transgender.”

All these people who claim to speak for LGBT and then speak for themselves, who are not B or T, well, they make my blood boil.

You wanna do marketing to the “gay and lesbian community” well, that’s great, but why the hell are you using B & T? Just to sound cool and inclusive while not being inclusive? Transgender is not just another “sexual orientation.” In fact, maybe homosexuality is just another “gender variant” behaviour.

Grrrrrrr….

But see what you think:

http://www.wamc.org/compost.html

——– Original Message ——–
From: Callie <CallieATQueerBitch.com>
To: cdtga1@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [cdtga1] LG, bt
Date: 18/06/2006 9:21 AM

Contempt on our part will avail us nothing.

I’m not contemptuous. I’m tired.

I actively participated in CDGLCC events for a decade, including writing a column in CommUnity for a year, doing weekend workshops and so on.

I agree with you, that it is discrimination against gender variant behaviors that forms any common ground with gay & lesbian people. Unfortunately, many gay & lesbian people believe that the best way to handle that discrimination is to enforce gender norms in their own community, using the power of desire to enforce those norms.

It’s the classic challenge. “Sure, I stuff mice up my butt like a normal person, but he stuffs guinea pigs up his butt, and that’s just sick!” The line of normal is drawn just past where we are, so we can join the normies in finding some other behavior beyond the pale. We find someone else who should be limited and oppressed, ask “How queer is too queer?” and by finding someone else who can be defined as too queer end up positioning ourselves as “just right.”

For me, the question is who speaks for what community. I love it when gay and lesbian people speak for their own views, their own lives. I love it when they see commonality with transpeople and work hard to be our allies.

I am tired, though, of people speaking for the lesbian and gay community while calling it the LGBT community. To me, that doesn’t feel like they are allies, it feels like they are expanding their purview by just giving lip service, like they are heeding political correctness rather than engaging the challenges.

I don’t think these people are my enemies. I don’t even think that most of them are trying to be dismissive, rather they have the good intention of inclusion, even if they don’t have the internalization of it.

The notion that “Attractive behavior is important,” though, makes me very uncomfortable. Sure, I believe that Harville Hendrix was right when he said that no one can really hear us until they believe we have heard them.

We have to be open and engaged in the stories of lesbian and gay people, understanding their shared cultural touchstones and the challenges of their lives before we can become allies of them. We have to be prepared to stand up for them if we want them to stand up for us, rather than being focused on how we separate from gay & lesbian people.

However, that doesn’t mean we have all the obligation. I am still surprised that no one in this group has expressed any outrage at the school who banned the transwoman from the prom because they believed that others may be disruptive because of her presence.

As long as we are held responsible for how other people respond to us, we will always be stigmatized and marginalized. Others can become disruptive, it will be assigned as our fault, and we will lose.

There has been some interesting chat the last few days about a story in the Houston Chronicle which talked of a transitioning police officer. No one in the police department would say anything negative, so the reporter went to some religious official who had been transnegative in the past to get a dismissive quote.

Why did the newspaper think they had to find someone to speak against trans, and search for one outside of the situation? Was that good reporting, or just yellow journalism?

If others have issues with us, is that really our responsibility? I know that gay and lesbian liberation would never have come this far if they let others opinions stifle them. AIDS, though, made it required to be queer and be here, no matter how unattractive that seemed to some.

I remember when Vicky Steele transitioned, and she wanted an article on trans for lesbians. I wrote one, but she didn’t like it much. On the other hand, Jamison Green liked it, and that’s enough for me.

Two Reasons To Be Wary Of Transgender
http://callan.transpractice.com/text/waryoftg.html

Lesbians and Gays are moving into the mainstream. Libby Post makes it clear that part of her income is marketing to that demographic.

Trannys, well, we aren’t doing that. And that separation between mainstream and marginalized feels to me like it’s growing.

I’m glad you have found a home in an LGBT environment. That’s great.

But that doesn’t mean that I haven’t tried, and that I haven’t been found to be “too queer” in many places, even in a tasteful Worthington by JC Penny suit.

But as long as we dismiss others as just being contemptuous rather than engaging their concerns, we just keep the marginalization going.