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“Gender Critical” Redditors attack a trans woman for the crime of wanting to be pretty

Presumably the TERFs will be picketing this store next

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By David Futrelle

Over on the “Gender Critical” subreddit — the most popular hangout for Reddit’s Trans-Excluding Radical Feminists (TERFs) — the regulars are getting good and mad at an unnamed trans women because she said in a video that she wanted to look pretty.

“I just watched a video of a TIM explaining his reasons for facial feminization surgery,” wrote tihozitje, using the TERFy term TIM (Trans-Identified Male) for the trans woman in question

It all boils down to him wanting to look/feel “beautiful”.

The horror. A human being wanting to look attractive. Who ever heard of such an affront to reason and decency?

He said that he was always jealous of the fact that “girls got to look pretty” and that the possibilty of an insurance covering his ffs made him pursue transitioning.

No one transitions because their insurance covers it; they transition because they’re trans — though insurance coverage can determine what surgeries they can and cannot afford.

This man is objectively very unattractive as a man or as a “woman”.

So the crux of the argument is that ugly people should remain ugly, at least if they’re trans? That’s not a “critical” stance; it’s just sort of mean.

It just bothers me so much that these TIMs see womenhood as looking beautiful.

Someone wanting to look good after their transition does not mean that they “see womanhood as looking beautiful”

An “ugly” woman is as much of a woman as any other. I’m tired of having women’s value be determined by their looks.

Well, take that up with society; don’t take your resentment out on a trans woman who’s honestly just hoping to look a little more feminine.

All of this shows how TIMs are truly the biggest sexists.

Well, no. But it does show how petty and spiteful some TERFs can get when faced with a trans woman simply trying to live her best life.

Tihozitje’s post got nearly 250 upvotes and inspired dozens of comments, nearly all of them in agreement with her stance.

“TIMs are the ultimate misogynists,” wrote OmnibusToken..

“They reduce women to makeup and dresses and a ‘feeling,'” added feministdreamer. “We’re not human beings to them at all. It’s sickening.”

Another commenter suggested that trans women just accept that they’re really men — and improve their appearances by hitting the gym and maybe buying themselves a toupee.

Why don’t these stupid idiots work out, wear a toupee, take care of their skin, get some nice clothes and cologne, etc. if they want to look nice?

Still others took a certain pleasure in the notion that nothing this allegedly ugly trans woman could do would actually make her pretty in the end.

“[T]hese men will never be ‘pretty girls,”” wrote wehurrytoourdeaths.

Never. Ugly men in a dress are still ugly men. They will never pass.

Added Arie_r:

These men think that because they don’t look like the top 5% men that they’ll have better luck as women. In reality, if they do transition, they’ll be at the bottom of the barrel of women when it comes to dating because very few people are interested in dating trans people, let alone a non-passing TiM. They might more easily find sex from other males but they will not find a committed loving relationship with someone of their choosing.

Outside of the manosphere itself, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a movement so motivated by spite as “Gender Critical” feminism.

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Paireon
Paireon
9 months ago

Funny, my first meeting with a trans woman kinda puts the lie to that bullshit. Because even though she was pre-op, the only thing that made me realize she was genetically male was when she removed her choker and showed me her Adam’s apple, otherwise I never would have guessed.

It wasn’t just her make-up and clothing (a very tasteful gothic-style black lace dress), everything about her just screamed “very pretty young woman”, be it facial and body structure (seriously, I’d easily put her in the top ten prettiest women I’ve ever met – sorry if that sounds a bit douchey), mannerisms, voice (something of a high alto)… I couldn’t help but think “dang, she was obviously not born the right biological gender”.

Ironically though, she told me her social life and sex life had both drastically improved since she’d transitioned. Maybe because she lived in comparatively tolerant Montreal, QC.

In any case, I’ve met a few other trans women since then (no trans men to my knowledge, though), and none of them managed to look as feminine, including post-op. Still had no problems with pronouns or otherwise treating them with respect as women, so make of it as you will.

Onager
Onager
9 months ago

@NautaliaC:

I haven’t met an actual TERF in person, or at least I don’t think I have. I wonder what happened to them to be so full of spite. It must have been the stuff of legends to “legitimize” their fear, discomfort and hatred.

The only person I’ve met who expressed such opinions was an ex – the only time we had a full-blown argument. It was many years ago, well before the TERF term was coined, but was definitely in the same ballpark. It was largely along the “you have to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes” line in that transwomen couldn’t really understand what it was like to be a woman because they hadn’t experienced things like periods or childbirth, even though such strict definitions exclude some women who were assigned female at birth. I never did get to the bottom of why she felt like that as we split up soon after for different reasons.

@Betrayer:

In related news, Graham Linehan created his own little twitter clone where he can be a bigot without getting ratio’d, and one of the first things he did was mock a cis woman for getting plastic surgery and make hateful comments about her appearance and denigrating the very concept of cosmetic surgery.

I saw he was nominated for The Last Leg’s “Dick of the Year” but they fudged the issue despite him being a solid frontrunner:

https://www.pinknews.co.uk/2019/12/11/graham-linehan-channel-4-dick-of-the-year-the-last-leg-transphobe/

https://www.beyondthejoke.co.uk/content/8115/last-leg-dick

Mumsnet popped up at the top of my results when searching for that and the conversation goes about as well as you’d imagine:

https://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_rights/3768189-The-Last-Leg-dodges-giving-Graham-Linehan-dick-of-the-year

I’m really saddened by his dickery and I am still trying to square that with my love for Father Ted and The IT Crowd. I’ve not watched either since finding out about his views. I’ve also not looked up his Twitter account but I suppose I really should.

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Onager

such strict definitions exclude some women who were assigned female at birth.

TERFs appear to either not care or to openly exclude infertile women from their definitions of womanhood. So very feminist of them. /s

I’ve also not looked up his Twitter account but I suppose I really should.

I’ll save you the trip: it’s mostly plugging Glindr (his Twitter clone), going on rants about how awful various trans* people are, retweeting other TERFs, and attacking cis allies for helping trans* people. Honestly one of the more hateful TERFs that hasn’t been banned yet.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

I’m not sure if this is a good idea, but here goes:

I fully understand the reaction to TERFS portraying trans women like us to grotesque males. Yet at the same time, it seems frustrating to only have a slightly queerer and more critical lens on social feminism to fall back on. The double-bind of having to conform to both expectations of sex (sometimes being in conflict with intersexuals at the very least) and socially-informed expectations that are often little more than a reflection of the first thing with a bit of queer deconstruction mixed in, is exhausting. I think that in a world that is as overexcited and overpopulated as ours, trans women have every right to embrace their unique perspective on femininity and argue confidently against both the push to conform to the role of the unpaid helper and the pull towards procreation as justification of their existence. Of course, this needs to be a choice for those who wish to embrace it, not a slightly nicer way of saying that we have to remain either unhappy or childless.

I’ve been away from the forums for a while and I’m from Germany, so I don’t know if all of this goes without saying and is just me being frustrated by all the suffering and deaths in my recent past, so here is some sort of holidays story (December 2013 Thailand at my SRS) that sort of emphasizes the point I’m trying to make:

It was warm and moist in Chon Buri and it appeared to be an end of a long and often painful journey. I had somehow managed to win in a fight against the gatekeeping psychologists in Germany, had my fair share of love, heartbreak and pain, was freshly in love with a great man after more than five years of dysfunctional relationships and was currently furious because I had decided to be extra sure to give my body the requirement level of testosterone so the surgery went without complications. Apart from annoying my trans sisters in the hotel and being too boorish to even register one of the cute girls attempt to flirt with me, I managed to put my body trough quite a lot of stress as I didn’t manage to gauge my pain due to very effective analgesia and rage. One of the things I did notice, however, was how our interests as patients and the fact that we could afford this surgery helped turn a small area around the Chon Inter Hotel into a safe space. Everyone was extremely nice and took great pains to ensure we were treated as girls.

This became a problem for me when a nurse/instructor explained the finer points of dilation to us on the cardboard part of a kitchen roll, tripped over her words in response to a question regarding homosexuality and upon being interrogated by a room full of trans women somehow managed to at least state her conservative beliefs and tried to smooth over the waves. We were later told that she would not be a dilation instructor in the future, although she had not done that much wrong, professionally. She had merely stated the unpopular opinion that homosexuality was not what her god wanted and thus made some of us uncomfortable. As I learned from her, however, she had no religious problem with trans women. She was just squicked out by the graphic image of trans lesbians having sex and the whole misunderstanding was because of feelings running wild.

I have thought about this event a lot and I still think that, as weird as it sounds, the anger in reaction to hatred is sometimes misguided. I think that a lot of people just hate us in theory and express their anger in the self-reinforcing spaces on the internet. So please remember that the person on the other side of the screen is also human, probably hurts because of things done to them for which we are a nice scapegoat and that activism or even fighting does not necessarily imply hatred.

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Lyzzy

I think that a lot of people just hate us in theory and express their anger in the self-reinforcing spaces on the internet.

Hatred in theory is still a problem, though, when it spills into real world harm. There are TERFs actively working with literal Nazis to deny your and my safety. They are people, sure, but that doesn’t make it ok for them to hurt us. I’m angry because there are real people getting hurt.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

@Naglfar

Absolutely and it would be absurd to achieve a degree in zen mastery before doing activism just because anger can lead to more escalation.

It’s just that I’m finding inspiration for my life in a saying of @pervocracy that you can be both a queer activist and treat a guy with a swastika tattoo in his face humanely (as a medical professional). I think that in the trap between becoming a cynical activist or a possible collaborator, this attitude is a good middle ground. Of course, it would be inhumane to deny yourself to the point where you’d have to be cruel to yourself and it’s tough to navigate these boundaries. My problem is that I have begun to find the discourse on this site to be a bit…well jarring.

Snowberry
Snowberry
9 months ago

@Dreidl

I dunno, as a transguy I love being a TIM (Trans-Identified Male).

Sorry, but no. They have a term for transmen, and it’s “TIF” (trans-identified female). As in, quit betraying womanhood, TIFfany. (Tim is a male name too, did you notice? I don’t know whether it was originally a coincidence, but the gendered allusion is part of why it caught on.)

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

you can be both a queer activist and treat a guy with a swastika tattoo in his face humanely (as a medical professional).

Of course, if my job were to provide medical care to someone, I would help someone, regardless of any hateful views they might hold. That is precisely why I don’t believe in religious exceptions for medical providers, didn’t they swear to ‘do no harm’?

Your point about how sometimes TERFs aren’t that bad, actually, is well… I mean, I don’t imagine any TERF coming in here being someone who steals candy from children and kicks puppies around. I’m sure they’re really kind to their kids, and smile at the clerk checking them out at the grocery store.*

Do those bits of ‘niceness’ override their hateful attitude? Not when it comes to them expounding on trans issues, it doesn’t.

I try to remember that everyone I’m speaking with through this magic box is human, but it is frustrating that we are often told that we just need to be nicer, more tolerant, of people who spout hateful or uncomfortable views.

Why aren’t they needing to be more tolerant of us?

I get that sometimes people can be working from an older understanding, such as using the term ‘transsexual’, for instance, instead of the now more commonly accepted ‘transgender’, and that depending on circumstances, people might respond to a gentle correction better than someone blowing up at them.

But sometimes the person has been doing little aggressions, micro-aggressions if you will, for a while. Sometimes they are weaponising things that don’t *seem* too bad, so they can skirt under the radar.

Sometimes I’ve had enough with trying to gently hand hold someone through something. Sometimes others have had that, as well.

There is no space for TERFs here, because TERFs have made a choice. If someone would like to learn about trans issues, they could admit their ignorance, and ask if anyone has any good places to start.

But the validness of trans women (and trans men, and enbies, and gender queer, and all sorts of gender related stuff) is never up for debate. Ever.

TERFs can go and debate someone’s humanity somewhere else, they have pretty much the whole of the internet to do that in. Just not here.

See ‘the paradox of tolerance’ for a good discussion on why one can never tolerate *intolerance*.

The paradox of tolerance states that if a society is tolerant without limit, its ability to be tolerant is eventually seized or destroyed by the intolerant. Karl Popper described it as the seemingly paradoxical idea that, “In order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance.”

*(As long as none of those people are non-passing trans people, because then they’d not be so nice.)

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

To build off of what Rhuu said:

Do those bits of ‘niceness’ override their hateful attitude? Not when it comes to them expounding on trans issues, it doesn’t.

Case in point: Hitler was a vegetarian, and he loved dogs (his favorite was a German Shepard named Blondi). That does not excuse the Holocaust. An extreme example? Sure, most TERFs haven’t killed millions of people, but they cause harm in more subtle ways, and have more than a little bit in common with Nazis.

But the validness of trans women (and trans men, and enbies, and gender queer, and all sorts of gender related stuff) is never up for debate. Ever.

THIS. So many people ask why well-known trans* people and activists can’t simply debate TERFs. We can’t, for the reason you listed. To debate them would mean to debate our humanity.

But sometimes the person has been doing little aggressions, micro-aggressions if you will, for a while. Sometimes they are weaponising things that don’t *seem* too bad, so they can skirt under the radar.

We see that effect in another thread with an occasional commenter with a fondness for gender essentialist anatomy and not as much of a fondness for actual facts (*cough* Samantha Kaswell *cough*). This commenter has never openly said that they hate trans* people, but they’ve been edging around what they can and can’t say here. It gets tiring after a while.

We need to make it clear that TERFs will not be tolerated. My safety and that of other trans* people depends on it.

Diptych
Diptych
9 months ago

Re: “trans” vs “trans*”: This might just be me, and I certainly wasn’t around for the historical debates discussed above, but the splat always seemed unnecessary to me. Either we accept “trans” as an inclusive umbrella term or we don’t. Hanging an invisible footnote off it seems to suggest it’s saying something like “we use this term to include both real trans people and fake trans people!”.

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

Oh, also @Lyzzy – trans women needing to be SUPER FEMME to ‘pass’ + sometimes navigate the gatekeeping medical establishment pisses me right the hell off as well.

That’s bullshit. Trans women have as diverse an expression of their gender as any cis woman. So if a trans lady would like to be a short haired butch lesbian, that makes her no less valid than someone who wants to go high femme.

There really really should be no value judgement attached to how a trans woman preforms her femininity!!!! I’m really sorry if you’ve had to go through that.

If I, someone who has a short hair cut (sometimes shaved right down on the sides), wearing mostly men’s clothing can be consistently clocked as female, why the hell can’t a trans women dress like me????

(also please let me apologise for that HORRIBLE paragraph above that has like thirteen commas in it. That’s totally on me. XD)

Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
9 months ago

Fuck TERFs/FARTs

Thank you for attending my TED tolk.

Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
9 months ago

OOps, forgot to add:

@Snowberry, I’m glad you made that comment, I wanted to but I’m running rather low on spoons.

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Rhuu

trans women needing to be SUPER FEMME to ‘pass’ + sometimes navigate the gatekeeping medical establishment pisses me right the hell off as well.

This really annoys me as well. There’s also a significant amount of gatekeeping around trans* women and sexual orientation, like certain truscum individuals (Blaire White, for example) claiming that the only real trans* women are those who are fully heterosexual and that others are secretly straight men (in other words, Blanchard rehashed). That’s BS obviously.

@Jesalin

Thank you for attending my TED tolk.

Great talk. Concise yet very informative and true.

Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
9 months ago

Truscum can fuck off away twice as hard.

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Jesalin

Truscum can fuck off away twice as hard.

IIRC a lot of truscum hang out with TERFs to be the “good ones” and make the rest of us look bad, so TERFs/FARTs and truscum aren’t really separate groups.

Not sure if this falls under truscum or not, but there’s also a few very vocal trans* women who repeatedly say that trans* women are not women and attack anyone person who disagrees with them (Miranda Yardley being one example). Naturally, the TERFs love them. They can fuck off too.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

@Rhuu

Of course, if my job were to provide medical care to someone, I would help someone, regardless of any hateful views they might hold. That is precisely why I don’t believe in religious exceptions for medical providers, didn’t they swear to ‘do no harm’?

Primum non nocere (or variations thereof) is one of three maxims
in the hypocratic oath. The level of commitment to this set of
beliefs and its interpretation within the national and
international ethical framework of medicine is a personal
choice. Not everyone has to swear this oath nor is everyone bound by it in the same rigor, which is precisely how there are doctors who refuse to do things they deem as unethical (e.g. treathing the religiously unclean [e.g. queers, sex workers]) and why not every doctor can do everything well (like talking to queer patients or being a trusted provider
for pregnant people they think should better get an abortion). This is why I think it’s important for medical professionals of all qualifications to study ethics.

I’m glad that you trust the paradox of tolerance as a framework for a discussion of the “reasons-for-being-nice-to-people-that-want-to-kill-us-problem and would like to use my understanding of it in trying to express my point a bit better without having to escalate the emotional stress level when it already makes speech (and translation between two cultures*) hard.

(*or more)

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

@Naglfar
I hope the paradox of tolerance is also a good framework for you.

@Rhuu, @Naglfar
We are in agreement that trans folk being nice to TERFS and only getting hatred back is a problem and that demanding niceness from the other side while doing horrible things to them is a cheap and cruel trick. I’m not trying to turn this forum into the more ugly parts of reddit or similar, I merely propose another viewpoint that, in my opinion, makes live within a framework of me-and-a-few-friend-vs-the-world or us-vs-them feel calmer.

The idea is using niceness as a tactic (not strategy) to match the cruel niceness of the opponent (not necessarily an enemy). In trying to become a teacher for computer science and ethics, I eventually found Richard Rortys idea of irony v.s. Metaphysics (Der Metaphysiker, die Ironikerin) a good fallback layer to discuss disjunct models of the world in regard to sex and gender without letting the bitterness of my experiences or the problems my lifestyle causes to others make it impossible to forget their or my humanity. Of course, I don’t want yet another binary model for sex-gender (Geschlecht) and having one that has at least 4 genders (2^n for n=2) is a far cry for the thousands of genders that tumblr once promised me — but it’s a start and seems to work reasonably well in practice. It’s based on the idea of n+1 in German teaching (you have to take one step after the other) and describes a mode of a slower but more secure extension of personal freedoms. It’s something I really yearn for after having had to rush trough my transition and a good part of my life, leaving a lot of mayhem and suffering. It can also be criticized as respectability politics.

The idea is to try to be civil when talking instead of giving in to the anger. I’ve often had problems with this in the past, especially on the internet and I don’t want to dismantle the specific culture of speaking plain but harshly when necessary, I just want to complement it. After an official education in Germany and an unofficial education in the part of the internet that speaks English, I would like to avoid being reminded of the holocaust/Shoa and playing out thought games of who-goes-nazi-under-what-circumstances when all I’m really trying to do is talk to people I view as sisters and potential friends about my feelings. I realize that this is exactly the song a collaborator and future fascist would sing and you have been quite candid about your feelings for “truescum”, so I’l try to use my model in relation to your arguments.

But sometimes the person has been doing little aggressions, micro-aggressions if you will, for a while. Sometimes they are weaponising things that don’t *seem* too bad, so they can skirt under the radar.

I agree. Whether you call it feelings, misunderstandings and aggression or micro-aggressions is a question of perspective. I propose to call it the former when talking about individuals who might be simply mistaken and the latter when they leave little room for doubt.

Sometimes I’ve had enough with trying to gently hand hold someone through something. Sometimes others have had that, as well.

Sure, sounds familiar.

There is no space for TERFs here, because TERFs have made a choice. If someone would like to learn about trans issues, they could admit their ignorance, and ask if anyone has any good places to start.

Not accepting people in social circles or banishment is a harsh strategy but I can see its utility in an imperfect world. The old dream of a noosphere where humankind works together in harmony is not quite there yet.

But the validness of trans women (and trans men, and enbies, and gender queer, and all sorts of gender related stuff) is never up for debate. Ever.

This could lead to a scenario in which being trans(*)/enby/queer or a certain gender is used as an excuse for committing crimes but I agree that cruel and unnecessary punishment like denying medical care in prison or vigilantism is unjustified.

TERFs can go and debate someone’s humanity somewhere else, they have pretty much the whole of the internet to do that in. Just not here.

Ok, let’s keep known TERFs out and consider banning those who appear to be too terfy.

THIS. So many people ask why well-known trans* people and activists can’t simply debate TERFs. We can’t, for the reason you listed. To debate them would mean to debate our humanity.

Well, I’m not Simone Weil, but so far I haven’t met a person I could not debate my humanity and the consequences my freedom has with. Sometimes there was a threat of violence and oftentimes the discussion (or me reading their books and texts) hurt like hell, but I often learned something. I even learned a lot from the specific torture of having to justify my existence to psychologists in Germany while the testosterone hurt my mind. I also learned a lot from the people I met in my fragile and overly emotional state. Often I was cruel while doing this, but the one time I thought about killing my psychologist for his specific brand of smugness, I thought better of it and am glad that for the fault-correction algorithms the medical sector still has. So I think that debate is sometimes possible, even though none of us should be forced to endure the pain. Maybe I’m just too sensitive for the candor of the international english language.

Case in point: Hitler was a vegetarian, and he loved dogs (his favorite was a German Shepard named Blondi). That does not excuse the Holocaust. An extreme example? Sure, most TERFs haven’t killed millions of people, but they cause harm in more subtle ways, and have more than a little bit in common with Nazis.

Well. They might be a bit fascist, but I don’t believe that each and every one of them is in ideological Nazi like Ilse Koch in regard to gender. Nor do we do ourselves a favor when pretending that every feminist (or man) that has a few more rigid or radical ideas is out to kill us. About half of humanity thinks they are female, about half thinks they are male and the often-overlooked third part (to say nothing of genders that have not yet been established) has a hard time getting worn down by the radicals on all sides of the issue. Those of the people that do want us dead probably like the fact that we can be simultaniously weak and strong. Using cold logic, aggression and a body that is often read as male while at the same time being able to appear just as alluring, gentle, wholesome or anything feminine. Just as a fascist requires according to Umberto (http://www.openculture.com/2016/11/umberto-eco-makes-a-list-of-the-14-common-features-of-fascism.html).

And they make a habit out of reading our posts and doxxing our people. So, please remember that while venting your anger in a safe space that is not writeable by the enemy is reliefing, it just might give them some good ideas and justify their anger for themselves. That’s why I personally would like a bit more civility.

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

There is a lot in your replies, Lyzzy, and some of it I’m not sure if I’m understanding. Let’s see how I do!

The idea is using niceness as a tactic

I understand the first half of this paragraph, about how you can be tactically nice to people in response to their cruelty.

And this is one tactic. However, if you’re relying on someone ‘on the other side’ to understand the undercurrent of anger you’re layering in with your niceness… They just won’t see it that way?

Part of the problem with using only civility and only niceness and never EVER anger as a tactic is that the other side just sees pushovers, and keeps pushing until they get pushed back.

It’s like how liberal people read Stephen Colbert’s character on the Stephen Colbert show as being an obvious caricature of a conservative, while conservatives thought he was just speaking truth to power. The framing is too different for both sides to see the same thing.

This bit:

Of course, I don’t want yet another binary model for sex-gender (Geschlecht) and having one that has at least 4 genders (2^n for n=2) is a far cry for the thousands of genders that tumblr once promised me — but it’s a start and seems to work reasonably well in practice. It’s based on the idea of n+1 in German teaching (you have to take one step after the other) and describes a mode of a slower but more secure extension of personal freedoms. It’s something I really yearn for after having had to rush trough my transition and a good part of my life, leaving a lot of mayhem and suffering. It can also be criticized as respectability politics.

I thiiink is saying that you wish that people would understand that there is more to discover about gender? Or that the journey of a thousand steps starts with just one, so someone could learn something small and then keep learning, at their own pace?

I really don’t know, sorry.

The idea is to try to be civil when talking instead of giving in to the anger.

No. There is a time for everything (turn, turn, turn) and sometimes it’s time to have a civil discussion, as we are doing, and sometimes it’s time to tell a TERF to f right the heck off. BACK TO GLINDR WITH YOU!!!!!

I’ve often had problems with this in the past, especially on the internet and I don’t want to dismantle the specific culture of speaking plain but harshly when necessary, I just want to complement it.

If one has the energy + a willingness to be civil and answer those questions, then of course one can.

But if one has had it up to here with whatever is being asked (and in this case, it’s “but are the transgendereds human though?”), one can respond with anger. Because needing to constantly defend something that *doesn’t need defending* is pretty tiring.

(note: I know that you don’t call a transgender person a ‘transgendered’ person, I was being obnoxious to make a point.)

I realize that this is exactly the song a collaborator and future fascist would sing and you have been quite candid about your feelings for “truescum”, so I’l try to use my model in relation to your arguments.

I don’t think we’re using ‘truscum’ in the same way. I’m using it to refer to a subset of trans people who insist that there is One True Way to be Trans, and anyone who doesn’t go through the same steps are TRANSTRENDERSSSSSS (ie: the worst).

That is bullshit, there are many ways to *be trans*. Medical gatekeeping has enforced truscum beliefs (you needed to have dysphoria to be prescribed HRT before the latest guidelines, I believe.) and some people just can’t allow others to just be.

Truscum are the worst because it is typically trans people perpetuating the hate and discrimination that they went through, and has no place in a community that should be open to people exploring their relationship to their gender assigned at birth.

This one I’m quoting me, and then you, because I don’t understand what exactly you’re saying in response to me.

But the validness of trans women (and trans men, and enbies, and gender queer, and all sorts of gender related stuff) is never up for debate. Ever.

This could lead to a scenario in which being trans(*)/enby/queer or a certain gender is used as an excuse for committing crimes but I agree that cruel and unnecessary punishment like denying medical care in prison or vigilantism is unjustified.

Um, what? My point is that you don’t debate a cis white gay man on his humanity. You don’t debate a PoC on their basic humanity. You don’t debate a trans person on *their* basic humanity.

We are all human. If you allow debate on that topic, it lets people think that there *is* a debate, when there isn’t. We are all human!!

Not sure where crimes come in? Being human doesn’t give you a get out of jail free card?

Ok, let’s keep known TERFs out and consider banning those who appear to be too terfy.

Typically, we do here, because we luckily have someone who will actually ban people. Unlike twitter, or facebook, or reddit – actions have consequences here.

So I think that debate is sometimes possible, even though none of us should be forced to endure the pain.

I’ll repeat what I said above – debate is not possible, because it allows the possibility that there should or even could be one.

No one’s mind was ever changed by debate. Well, okay, it’s super unlikely that someone’s mind will be changed. A debate is an argument, and if we’re debating something we care about, we don’t want to be wrong, and we get defensive if we are shown to be wrong or in the wrong.

https://twitter.com/cafernblue/status/1204492897002958849?s=19

And they make a habit out of reading our posts and doxxing our people.

Uh, yeah, we know. That’s why we typically use screen names, here, and not our real name. I was even hesitant to post what I typically wear, because who knows?

(I ultimately decided it wasn’t information that would help someone doxx me, I hope.)

So, please remember that while venting your anger in a safe space that is not writeable by the enemy is reliefing, it just might give them some good ideas and justify their anger for themselves. That’s why I personally would like a bit more civility.

Friend, they don’t need our anger to justify their own. You could be sweet as can be to them, and they’ll take the slightest anything to show how you’re angry at them.They can twist and quote mine and strip context from *anything*.

I refer you to the entirety of gamergate, in regard to Anita Sarkeesian. They took someone going “hey, let’s think critically about games, because we love them and would like for them to be better.” and turned it into “NO WHITE MEN CAN MAKE OR PLAY GAMES EVER!!!! DEATH TO THE WHITE MAN!!!!!!” and “THEY’RE SAYING THAT WHITE MEN CAN’T BE THE LEAD IN VIDEO GAMES ANY MORE!!! THEY’RE TRYING TO TAKE THE GAMES WE LOVE FROM OUR COLD, DEAD HANDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

There was nothing that a feminist female cultural critic could have said that *wouldn’t* have been twisted like that. There is no way to ‘nice’ yourself out of being a target of a hate group, like gamergate.

I viscerally understand the idea of wanting to be nice in response to aggression. That is literally how I deal with conflict, by fawning. I know this, and I’m trying to be aware of myself so that I can choose to do it, instead of doing it instinctively.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t be nice, to show someone how they should be behaving in a situation. It just means that I know that when *I* am in a conflict, that is how I will usually respond, by being suuuuper nice. Extra nice. So accommodating.

And that isn’t fair to me. My hurt and anger are as valid as theirs. I get to express them. I’m white, so I don’t get tagged as an ‘angry PoC’ person being aggressive, so the person I’m arguing with can’t use that caricature to disregard my points.

TL;DR – Basically, you’re asking for tone policing, here. And that’s just not going to happen.

ETA: wasn’t posting, a test post went through, so I pasted my message in here. Now with less weird line breaks!

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

Part of the problem with using only civility and only niceness and never EVER anger as a tactic is that the other side just sees pushovers, and keeps pushing until they get pushed back.

I’m sorry for this misunderstanding, but I did not try to advocate for niceness at all costs and without any anger. I just tried to complement the necessary anger so that it works better. I know about being a pushover from experience and am trying to explain how civility acts as some sort of mantle that dampens the blows of the oppositions arguments.

So yes, I am sort of tone-policing but as far as I remember that used to mean an ad hominem attack on a given argument, not a general plea for a bit more civility.

And this is one tactic. However, if you’re relying on someone ‘on the other side’ to understand the undercurrent of anger you’re layering in with your niceness… They just won’t see it that way?

I don’t think they have that much of a choice. Sure, they can justify their worldview in whichever way they want and hype up their anger until it boils, but their best argument to newcomers and their wider audience are the very things we say and do. The best criticism of trans people there is problematizes the wrongdoings and problematic speech of some trans people. Sure, they could also just lie or make up fake accounts to generate some strawpeople to hate, but I don’t think this has as much effect on the mainstream as our own words and the people (those who merely read us and those who wish to become like us) influenced by them.

It’s like how liberal people read Stephen Colbert’s character on the Stephen Colbert show as being an obvious caricature of a conservative, while conservatives thought he was just speaking truth to power. The framing is too different for both sides to see the same thing.

Yep, irony depends on people getting the joke. A similar thing is true for good points made in anger: If the audience cannot relate, they notice the feelings but twist their meaning. This is why I think civility works better than using the argument having the most impact on the feelings of the adversary.

I thiiink is saying that you wish that people would understand that there is more to discover about gender? Or that the journey of a thousand steps starts with just one, so someone could learn something small and then keep learning, at their own pace?

Well, I tried making a 4-point model of gender to argue why asexuality is as valid a gender as being trans* vs. a lot of technically inclined guys who did not care a lot about feminism or long texts without graphics and math in general. The goal was to argue why we need at least 4 genders instead of 3 (otherwise we would be encroaching on the rights of intersex people). I argued that in the social sphere, there needs to be freedom to act, not just the existence as a neutral fact or perhaps a medical problem and thus the best way to describe gender was to have more than 3 (e.g. 4) genders which represent idealized tendencies of humans to (re)structure their vocabulary regarding gender.

I threw all I knew of feminism on the problem and tried to put it in a geometrical form despite not being that good with space but it was neither elegant nor very convincing because there were constructions like ♀’ to signify things that derive from a critical (but not sufficiently critical) understanding of gender. It was good enough to get a few nerds in line in a social conflict but not good enough to turn it into my model for gender in the context of living and teaching.

Then I happened to find a text from Richard Rortys regarding the Metaphysiker (some rather masculine figure who believes that objective truth is possible and who has a rather rigid model of the world) arguing against the Ironikerin (someone rather feminine who has learned that rigid models of the world eventually fail and hurt people, thus remains sceptical and tries to convince people to not build models that are to rigid while being mindfull of the pain changes in world models cause). Those figures seemed like a good approximation of the two basic gender-based worldviews and fit into my model perfectly. I would like to improve this model which seems to be a good idea to explain possibilities in gender dynamics which I have either witnessed or lived as well as personal comfort zones. This should help to explain interaction between those genders without requiring a crash course in feminist literature which are a pain to people more oriented in space and math than text. It’s basically my rather nerdy way of being out and proud. Also, I’m trying to explain my rather quirky way of relating to a world that does not always like trans people like me in the hopes that this is helpful to others in a similar situation.

I don’t think we’re using ‘truscum’ in the same way. I’m using it to refer to a subset of trans people who insist that there is One True Way to be Trans, and anyone who doesn’t go through the same steps are TRANSTRENDERSSSSSS (ie: the worst).

I feel like I am already in violation of

Don’t post too much or try to make threads all about you. Try to avoid drama.

I was trying to talk to you and the rest of the commenters on the issue of truescum. I felt threatened by you implying I was a bit of a transmedicalist and @Naglfar and others expressing their anger towards them. I do not believe that one needs to fulfill extremly rigid standards to transition in the one approved way, but I cannot grasp the meaning of unlimited creativity in regard to sex in a world where my estrogene would cost about 60$ a month without insurance (still heaviliy subsidized) and can be carciogenic if used improperly.

This could lead to a scenario in which being trans(*)/enby/queer or a certain gender is used as an excuse for committing crimes but I agree that cruel and unnecessary punishment like denying medical care in prison or vigilantism is unjustified.

Um, what? My point is that you don’t debate a cis white gay man on his humanity. You don’t debate a PoC on their basic humanity. You don’t debate a trans person on *their* basic humanity.

I don’t quite get how being valid relates to basic humanity. Yes, being denied pronouns, names, bathrooms or the right to fall in love with consenting adults is hurtful to a concept of basic humanity. However, being valid means a lot more than that for trans people (or just to me?). It implies that one gets to buy hormones, change their name, use gender-appropriate bathrooms etc. There was, however, more than one case in my life where a would-be-trans person (i.e. someone who was insecure in his masculinity and found me fascinating) abused my solidarity with a potential other trans girl to hurt my friends and me. In a polarized case, one could imagine some asshole trying to use their status as a gender minority as a shield and this is where solidarity would end — there assholes among as, because we are humans. They still ought to have human rights, and we should not disavow their status as a gender minority. If the still insisted on being a gender minority, they would happen to be a criminal individual of that minority.

I’ll repeat what I said above – debate is not possible, because it allows the possibility that there should or even could be one.

Yeah, that about sums up my problem — yet, here we are, trying to debate the issue with me being overly captious, words (and quite possibly emotions) running wild and posts dragging on forever. I hope you are not too put off by my words so far, but I have to go to bed now.

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Lyzzy

asexuality is as valid a gender

Asexuality isn’t a gender, it’s a sexuality. Did you mean agender?

I felt threatened by you implying I was a bit of a transmedicalist and @Naglfar and others expressing their anger towards them. I do not believe that one needs to fulfill extremly rigid standards to transition in the one approved way, but I cannot grasp the meaning of unlimited creativity in regard to sex in a world where my estrogene would cost about 60$ a month without insurance (still heaviliy subsidized) and can be carciogenic if used improperly.

I was not implying that you are a transmedicalist. If what I said seemed like I was implying that, I’m sorry. What I was saying was condemning something I found problematic that was similar to something Rhuu brought up.
I’m not sure what the price or safety of estrogen has to do with what genders can exist. Can’t we have a world in which people can have any gender identity and have doctors help people with HRT? For many health decisions, I talk to doctors who know more than I do about medical things. That’s not the same as insisting that to be trans* one has to fit certain requirements.

There was, however, more than one case in my life where a would-be-trans person (i.e. someone who was insecure in his masculinity and found me fascinating) abused my solidarity with a potential other trans girl to hurt my friends and me. In a polarized case, one could imagine some asshole trying to use their status as a gender minority as a shield and this is where solidarity would end — there assholes among as, because we are humans. They still ought to have human rights, and we should not disavow their status as a gender minority. If the still insisted on being a gender minority, they would happen to be a criminal individual of that minority.

I’m sorry this happened to you. I’m not quite understanding what it has to do with validity of trans* people. Some people of all genders are assholes, like you said, and nothing you or I can do will change that.

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

So yes, I am sort of tone-policing but as far as I remember that used to mean an ad hominem attack on a given argument, not a general plea for a bit more civility.

A ‘plea to be more civil’ says that we are being uncivil, which would be a tone argument.

Basically, i’m reading this as “if only all the minorities were more civil! We’d get more allies!!!”

I would say tone policing applies, here.

Also, if someone’s allyship is dependant on them being treated woth kod gloves and receiving ‘best ally’ cookies, they are not an ally.

comment image

Well, I tried making a 4-point model of gender to argue why asexuality is as valid a gender as being trans*

Asexuality is NOT a gender. In no way, shape, or form. It’s a way to express one of the ends of the sexual attraction spectrum, nothing to do with gender.

(Aromantic is also not a gender.)

I’m glad you’re exploring gender in a way that allows people with different knowledge to join in the discussion. Good luck with that!

I understand more what you are talking about.

Re: truscum – i don’t read anyone calling you that, i’m afraid you’ll have to be more specific on where that happened, sorry.

Naglfar referenced someone (unless you are Blaire White?) As truscum, and Jes added her feelings on that subject.

Re: not debating someone’s humanity –

(Content warning for violent transphobia)

i mean like… Being allowed to Use the proper washroom.

Not needing to worry that if someman thinks a trans woman is cute, only to attack after finding out she’s trans, and then get off from being punished because of the gay panic defense.

Being evicted for being trans. Losing your job.

Dying in the emergency room from a refusal of care because a trans person happened to be trans in the wrong spot.

Being unable to go through the ‘proper procedures’ to get an HRT prescription. Being unable to fill the prescription. Having the pharmacist mess up your medication (probably on purpose) because it’s for something that they don’t approve of.

All of these things wouldn’t happen to your average (cis, the dominant ethnicity, speaking the dominant language) person. They happen to a *trans* person, because a trans person *isn’t a person*. They are an ‘other’.

This is what i mean.

And i’m not debating you on the idea of debating TERFs. You can, but i think it gives them a platform to stand on that they don’t deserve.

I, personally, will not.

I will answer someone’s questions, if it feels like they are asking them in good faith.

I am, however, a terrible judge of that quality! I will often spend time on people who aren’t here for a discussion, but just to waste people’s time.

Honestly though, I know i’ll never change the mind of the person i’m having a discussion with, but i might share something that someone else resonates with.

Or maybe i’ll put my foot in my mouth, and someone here will correct me, and i will learn a thing!

Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
Jesalin, Goddess of Lust & Pleasure
9 months ago

I am, however, a terrible judge of that quality! I will often spend time on people who aren’t here for a discussion, but just to waste people’s time.

Never a waste of time in my books. I love reading your point of view, and frequently you’re making points I’d like to make but don’t have the spoons for!

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

AW SHUCKS @JES <3

ETA: thank you, Naglfar!

Naglfar
Naglfar
9 months ago

@Rhuu, Jesalin

Never a waste of time in my books. I love reading your point of view

Agree. Rhuu has a great perspective on many things and is very good at breaking down arguments and correcting them (mine included sometimes), and can often phrase things way more elegantly than I can.

Rhuu- if the phrasing’s kind of clunky here, it’s because I was responding to Jesalin but talking about you, so I wasn’t totally sure on whether to use second or third person, so I used third person. My apologies for weird grammar.

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

That’s fair Naglfar! It’s tough to figure these things out in this kind of a format.

English is such a flexible language, and yet we still manage to find situations where it just doesn’t quiiiite make sense, haha.

kupo
kupo
9 months ago

@Rhuu
Joining the love fest. ❤ I’ve always enjoyed reading your posts, especially when they’re to the Marks and MRALs. Even if they’ll never listen to you, you help me understand things I didn’t before and sometimes put words to what bothers me about something.

@Naglfar
Past me, who was an editor, says your grammar and use if tense is just fine. 🙂

Edit: my spelling, however, leaves something to be desired. 😂

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

@ Naglfar

Asexuality is as valid a gender
Asexuality isn’t a gender, it’s a sexuality. Did you mean agender?

Argh, my bad. Of course I did, thanks.

I was not implying that you are a transmedicalist

Ok, you did not. @Rhuu expressed some sort of understanding for me even though I am using problematic terms like transsexual while you bashed truescum in general. I took this to mean that somewhere in talking to both of you, there was the idea that I was too much of a transmedicalist.

If what I said seemed like I was implying that, I’m sorry. What I was saying was condemning something I found problematic that was similar to something Rhuu brought up.

I can take harsh criticism and soft concern. Together they are quite painful especially if there are misunderstandings and the difference in technology, timezone, culture and intensity etc. makes writing here quite hard. I would still like to write if that is ok and would be honored to receive honest and direct criticism instead of appeals to emotion and conformity in so far as that is acceptable. I know I make a lot of rookie mistakes again as I am still stressed out from losing my a lot of people and finding a new profession and the need to translate between cultures makes reflection on the things I learned quite hard.

I’m not sure what the price or safety of estrogen has to do with what genders can exist.

Well it sort of limits what genders can be lived in practice if one wants to live their gender topless (e.g. sunbathing, sauna, love).

Can’t we have a world in which people can have any gender identity and have doctors help people with HRT? For many health decisions, I talk to doctors who know more than I do about medical things. That’s not the same as insisting that to be trans* one has to fit certain requirements.

Medical professionals do insists on a certain way of doing things in regard to gender that they think is good for a combination of the patient, the patient-world-interaction or their own bottom line. In Germany , the sort that do not follow some sort of mercenary code (gender works as I say and you pay me, then you get whatever you want) seem to either be a bit on the authoritarian side (live with a secret and be a proper girl then you can become a woman) or trust their patient a lot (you are an adult and seem qualified, here is your medical data, here is my opinion, I have other patients, what do you want to talk about?). There are practical limits to the level of care a doctor can provide and delegating a medical decision to them means an interaction with their standards. Thus, as far as I understand it, whether you trust a medical professional who insists on a more transmedical standard in order to provide cheaper and safe care, conform to a transmedical standard, so they do not have to or pay your way to success in transition is largely a personal choice with consequences that are sometimes obvious. I for one would love a world where gender expression is very free and works in harmony with the rest of human needs. I am skeptical of a world where it works in harmony for those who can afford it and is painful for those who cannot. I am concerned when I look at the struggle of other people on the same way, being as insensitive to risk as I once was and nearly as good at ignoring advice. Also, I do tend to be angry at obvious attempts of abusing the trust inherent in this system — like the asshole I talked about, like the periodic attempts of channers to finally legitimize their latest concotion of sort of pedophile-accepting-gender (a minor variaton on the LGBTIQ*+P-theme), like people at my university turning to me of all people for opinion on the latest variation of ROGD. I think that some civility is helpful to me in dealing with this things and am trying to make an argument for it as a way of life.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

A ‘plea to be more civil’ says that we are being uncivil, which would be a tone argument.

In an actual argument (which I tried and failed to avoid) it is and I am sorry.

Basically, i’m reading this as “if only all the minorities were more civil! We’d get more allies!!!”

Well, I try to say “look friends, here is another way of life that might be interesting to you, how about it?” to avoid the reductio-ad-hitler as punishment for anything that feels like dissent.

I would say tone policing applies, here.

Ok then. Please tell me when you want to stop talking.

Also, if someone’s allyship is dependant on them being treated woth kod gloves and receiving ‘best ally’ cookies, they are not an ally.

Yeah, we tend to do that and my standards for allies are strict, my standards for romantic partners who are allies are more strict and sometimes hurtful for all involved. It’s an ideology that is easy to have and hard to live honestly.

Well, I tried making a 4-point model of gender to argue why asexuality is as valid a gender as being trans*

Asexuality is NOT a gender. In no way, shape, or form. It’s a way to express one of the ends of the sexual attraction spectrum, nothing to do with gender.

I know and I do not have a lot of data on agender people. I’ve read some blogs, talked to a small number (n=~3) of them and tried to understand them well enough to be an ally when needed. Of course the orientation towards a gender should be a primary focus and I admit that I confused things when trying to remember the facts. Thanks for the correction. This is something I want to learn more about but I still can not believe that gender and sexuality have nothing whatsoever to do with another.

I’m glad you’re exploring gender in a way that allows people with different knowledge to join in the discussion. Good luck with that!

Thanks.

Naglfar referenced someone (unless you are Blaire White?) As truscum, and Jes added her feelings on that subject.

I am not Blaire White but would love to read her some day as soon as my mind is ready for another round of resistance training in book worlds. I usually love reading books and am trying to build a better library on trans topics. Sadly it’s hard to find good German books and its much easier to get to know our critics then people who accept us. I recently had to recommend Anne L Boedecker: The Transgender Guidebook: Keys to a Successful Transition (ASIN: B008RLYG4A) to a german nerd friend on recommendations of the internet because there seems to be no up-to-date literature and our support structure is … sometimes deficient in a I-get-paranoid-when-friends-stop-using-accounts sort of way.

(Content warning for violent transphobia)

i mean like… Being allowed to Use the proper washroom.

Not needing to worry that if someman thinks a trans woman is cute, only to attack after finding out she’s trans, and then get off from being punished because of the gay panic defense.

Being evicted for being trans. Losing your job.

I can sort of relate to trouble in dating and finding or keeping a job or place to live while being honest about my trans status. I did not have that much physical altercations. Average men tend to be too scared of the level of aggression I am able to display and the pain I could potentially cause thanks to early adrenaline-conditioning in the role of a boy who was effiminate enough to get punches and rocks thrown at and found the few that happened quite calming. The whole world suddenly becomes so easy as there is only a goal, maybe some innocent bystanders and an opponent who is legally and morally wrong and has picked a fight instead of a myriad of expectations. It’s much better compared to trouble with the police for being too weird (and trans) in public when daring to look angry at an official without a clear uniform who was neither aware he was about the thousands guy staring at me nor of the feelings that caused. The good news is that this is a great skill to have when working in high-stress situations like being an EMT in general — if only the communication with the team works.

But yeah, other than that it’s the same old and sad story of them vs. us even though it’s cruel and without any real necessity.

Dying in the emergency room from a refusal of care because a trans person happened to be trans in the wrong spot.

That is bad. The closest thing I came was a blood loss of about 500ml and elevated stress due to misunderstandings (I tend to be too cool under pressure as a result of being used to having to fight). I hope the patient in your example at least had proper analgetics etc. so their death wasn’t that painful. Stil, it’s horrible when there isn’t more that is done. Also, yes, the world is cruel (dunno if it was the same person as the one who dated that violent transphobe but it sounds like it could be — same old sad story).

Being unable to go through the ‘proper procedures’ to get an HRT prescription. Being unable to fill the prescription. Having the pharmacist mess up your medication (probably on purpose) because it’s for something that they don’t approve of.

Horrible things and I could share a few stories of this sort without hurting to hurt patient confidentiality or trust from friends. The things that happen when there are no proper procedures or when people do not fit said procedures are painful and spectacular.

All of these things wouldn’t happen to your average (cis, the dominant ethnicity, speaking the dominant language) person. They happen to a *trans* person, because a trans person *isn’t a person*. They are an ‘other’.

I understand the sentiment and would have shared it even though the cultural divide makes it a half-truth up until maybe two years ago when I realized more of the potential trans* people have and how many ways there are for us to improve the world instead of just living in its margins — and also in how many ways I have hurt others in my transition. As I like to listen as well as talk, I often got to see just how thin the veil for “average” is, how painful it is underneah and I think it’the specific way in which minorities getting played out against one another or the “average” person to keep them from attacking those that hurt them is largely dependent on our models for explaining the world. Or a bit shorter: The average joe and jane is likely not the source of the problem even if they sometimes engage in gestures, speech etc. that is hurtful. Neither are people who get mad and try to hurt us directly (which necessitates resistance of some kind, not hatred), neither are people whose model of the world remained unchanged for a long time and now starts to hurt people. We are all humans and playing cruel tricks with the concept of personhood is sadly a common tactic.

I realize that this probably sounds callous to someone outside of Germany, but: Being the other or feeling that one is not quite normal enough is a cultural norm everywhere for everyone. Sure, not everyone gets hit by the othering with the same intensity or pain level but freedoms clashing against freedoms, people expanding their freedoms and hurting others, and some people playing the victim — I really hope this statement does not hurt anyone here — is pretty much a social given. Shopenhauer put it in the hedgehogs dilemma

Next to everyone complains about other groups wrongdoing and I try to be openminded and listen. As a species we have expanded to levels that are hard to sustain, are bothering each other constantly in our fight for our individual rights and should, in my opinion, try to find ways to decelerate this process so that there are, eventually, less humans, less energy consumption, less violence. Going into the space exploration aera would also be nice, but it does not seem that feasible yet. Of course, it’s quite hard to say this things when being a German in 2019 and especially when talking to people who are currently under pressure to function or die from the likes of Trump.

And i’m not debating you on the idea of debating TERFs. You can, but i think it gives them a platform to stand on that they don’t deserve.

So far I have only talked with some older german feminist who generally nice but quite irritated that their beloved Binnen-I (two genders in texts by a stylistic convention conveniently including trans*) was seen as not modern enough and have some concerns about their tendency to show solidarity for other women being used yet again to shoulder the burden for — well, you can imagine the rest. I have also talked to some younger feminist who where quite comfy with the radicals even though their ideas might seem a bit too radical. And yes, seeing it as naively-abstract (or cynical) as this is precisely what gave me a chance to talk much calmer with them in the first place. I know that proper activism would be to stay, win their trust and eventually convince them, but so far I have been more of a wanderer. I have, in living with personal tragedies and in some sort of Helfersyndrom, overdone this mode of thinking to the point I became quite cynical and there were not that much feelings involved on my part and I am — yet again — trying to get back. Still I think that this mode of thinking has some value if done right.

I am, however, a terrible judge of that quality! I will often spend time on people who aren’t here for a discussion, but just to waste people’s time.

The short version would be to become the sort of person who does not waste their time with those obnoxious people.

For an explanation or a slightly longer version (My best try to help an unfamiliar internet person in a semipublic forum even though I have a few mental issues and only a faint idea what you need):

A bit more cynicism could help you and as gender is largely a social construct in which there are lots of freedoms for those brave enough to take them, I would recommend a bold exploration of the male point of view. It probably hurts (it did for me) but sometimes the very things we try very hard to avoid can be helpful. I know from experience that the very style of thinking and arguing in a metaphysical way (there is objective truth, I happen to be good at finding it, others probably need convincing) that I gladly renounced as overly male and cynic when I finally got my estrogen was what saved me from possible further psycho trauma in a developing situation in which a man eventually had difficulty parsing such words as “no” or “Please do not do that $name” because I too had trouble with fawning and had learned that I should only use about 20-30% of my strength to be considered cute. I eventually bit him in the nose as he was trying to kiss me which drove home my point enough to end the threat but the decision I made in my mind would have allowed me a lot more violence than that. I found my own version of civility in trying to live with that fact and it improved my life a lot. If you are interested in this way of live, I would urge you to know better than me when it’s time to stop fighting because you have become so adept at it that seeking trouble with your whole enviroment has become a bad habit.

Honestly though, I know i’ll never change the mind of the person i’m having a discussion with, but i might share something that someone else resonates with.

I think you are mistaken. A lot of people decide deep in their mind that something convinces them and only tell you years after the fact because they are used to be manipulated all the time and everwhere from the time the turn on the TV to cultural artifacts in parks that used to be nature to people turning whatever is left of nature to culture in an attempt to convince other people. It just takes time and quiet (no stress, few problems with elementary needs). But yeah, it probably won’t happen soon enough or be worth the price if you pour out your life in a TERF echo chamber and hope for tolerance. I still think they are good (if cruel) teachers.

Or maybe i’ll put my foot in my mouth, and someone here will correct me, and i will learn a thing!

Heh, I hope for the same thing.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

So far I have only talked with some older german feminist who generally nice but quite irritated that their beloved Binnen-I (two genders in texts by a stylistic convention conveniently including trans*)

conveniently not including trans*.

Sorry.

opposablethumbs
opposablethumbs
9 months ago

London judge rules that being a terf or similar is “not a protected characteristic”.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/dec/18/judge-rules-against-charity-worker-who-lost-job-over-transgender-tweets

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

Aw, crapbuckets. My reply is gooone!!

Okay, shorter, befofe i get ready for work – i see where the transmedicalist confusion came from, now. I was trying to express sympathy if you had been forced to run through a medical gatekeeping gauntlet to access care, not say that you believed in that ideology.

I know that before ‘informed consent’ became a thing, people had to do a lot to access care, things they might not have personally wanted to do, such as make up, very feminine clothing, etc. If they didn’t, they were seen as Not Really Trans by the medical establishment, and would be denied care.

I only wanted to say that if you had needed to do that, it is 100% bullshit, and that i was sorry for it.

(I’m Canadian, eh, i think we express sympathy by saying ‘sorry’ and having it mean ‘i’m so sad that you needed to go through that, that is bullshit, you have my sympathy’. Cultural shorthand, haha)

Re – debate – ahhhh. I was never talking about meatspace debate, i was talking about this
comment image

That’s Steven Crowder, a conservative podcaster. Link goes to wiki.

Because, in an online space, ‘debate me!’ And (falsely) crying about how the Left won’t even debate after being blocked or banned for being a shitheel is suuuuuuper common. Like, suuuuuuuper common.

Here is a longread article (which i shamefully don’t have time to FINISH reading before linking, i don’t want to lose this response as well!!) That talks about debate, and the part it plays in legitimising the far right.

In Canada, we have hate speech laws, so this “all speech is protected!” Attitude from americans is SUPER annoying. Hate speech isn’t protected.

I don’t know how it works in Germany, but i suspect you also have hate speech laws, so this all emcompassing protection of speech is strange to you as well.

Unfortunately, many tech things are built by americans (in the english internet), so we have to deal with their bullshit. Twitter won’t ban nazis, facebook won’t vet politician’s ads, etc.

So i think the word you’ll find more useful is maybe ‘discussion’, rather than debate.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
9 months ago

@Rhuu

Thanks for the long reply and especialy the effort to do it twice – I know how frustrating that is. I agree that discussion is a very good word and would like some time to sort my thoughts and talk to some other trans people. I just damaged another car, annoyed my partner and set the bathroom underwater to rush to a party that didn’t happen and my friends for the next party are late.So I hope to read you later and thanks for the help so far.

Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
Rhuu - apparently an illiterati
9 months ago

I hope your day is going better now!

Good luck sorting out your thoughts, and discussing things with other people.

Lyzzy
Lyzzy
8 months ago

I think I mostly agree with Laurie Penny on her criticism of Bannon, bigots in general and the problems of well-meaning liberals in stopping them.

I also agree that the economy of throwing out ideas helps intense and nasty discussion (especially on the internet where one can talk to thousands of people far too cheap because commercialized war-and-apocalypse-technology works a lot more like Gibson’s’ cyberspace than a magical desk to talk to thousands of people)

Reading this piece was an incredibly weird experience. I think I have read it before. I filtered out whole paragraphs, stopped in the middle and had weird misconceptions regarding names, places, attribution of text etc. My best explanation for this is that I have trained myself to generate stress for my social environment in an attempt to fail my studies in education, so I could at the least provide a basic level of end-of-life care for my late mother since I could not save her as my grandmother wanted. It was ugly, but she managed to die with a joke, my hero to the end. It’s an uncommon twist in a real-life-story to have the boy who hears too many stories and tries very hard to become a good man without ever really believing it eventually turn into some sort of special girl who still tries to save everyone and gets to watch a lot of people suffer and die. It’s also an overly cynical way of telling a story because it leaves out the best and worst of what is life – I hope I get a chance to catch up on her (and everyone else’s) real story soon.

I’m currently not that good at noticing my feelings, so I can only conclude that Laura Penny probably has a good reason for her choices because I assume winning a debate by appeals to pity is painful to most honest actors whether they win or loose.

Ok, now that I have collected my thoughts somewhat, I think the point I was trying to make was that I am sad that trans (and queer, and likely a lot of marginalized) people so often are only portrayed as tragic figures. It’s painful how many of us are either victims of the right or heroes in the usual sense of the word (killing for your country, sacrificing yourself etc.). I like the fact that marginalized people who are neither are able to support each other and in just living their life in a strange new world manage to help others relate to one another and us.

This is also what gives me hope for a younger trans girl in Germany who somehow managed to misunderstand me so completely that she somehow managed to tell stories about herself that are even more glaringly weird than mine.