I was searching through the Usenet archive for a “Generic Usenet Reply” I did when I came across this poem I wrote in 1998.
It very much still applies today, as the division between “break the system” and “work inside the system” activists seems to get wider and wider.
BoomKiss Callan Williams © 1998 I am the shock trooper of the transgender revolution Assaulting the entrenchment of heterosexism ground with my own neutered body boldly out and queer both woman and male now neutered and emasculated demanding the world accept me for who I am accept us for who we are I am the guerrilla of the transgender revolution behind the lines of normativity in the offices and courtrooms surprise revelations on expectations of heterosexism Looking as normative as possible but in my mind and heart I carry the message accept me for who I am accept us for what we are. Turncoat! Betrayer! You sell out your truth just to make your life easier! Be bold and in their faces Take the knocks and blows savor the intense suffering that comes from being queer comes from being out there where freedom is found Bombthrower! Revolutionary! You make our job harder we can't open the hearts of people when they fear an assault. Learn to fit in Learn to gain standing And you will find people with a welcoming smile. I wear my medals boldly Show the scars of my battles Always ready to fight strike against injustice strike against normativity bold words and actions Standing alone In my war To make people free I keep my scars private And come from my love Ready to connect With those who see me As just another human. Standing together With friends and allies In the middle of the group where minds are changed. You cripple our fight! Taking all the credit Blunting the blows Challenging herculean efforts with the drip drip drip of your words Why must I fight you When we should fight together? Why do you choose to be the enemy By becoming like them? You cripple our fight By demanding fanaticism Ignoring the truth that many jut want to fit in. Why must I fight you When we should fight together Why do you choose to be the enemy By attacking people like me? This is a holy war for the freedom of our lives. I stand martyred on the bloody ground. You live nicely in a comfortable home mocking the sacrfice of people like me. This is a process of education for the hearts of others I stand as a teacher in the midst of the crowd while you live on the edges playing out your martyrdom living out some sort of shame which drives you to kill those who can love you. The challenge we face Is working together Finding common ground Which honors us all Those who fight with their queerness Those who teach with their normativity Both taking a part in the revolution that comes Stand up for ourselves Accept the love of others Demand our own freedom Embrace the freedom of all Crash down the walls Build bridges of understanding Celebrate the individual Celebrate us all.