By Andrea Sand, Affirmative Action Chair
I am a feminist, and I am a trans woman. I, unlike some, do not find these two parts of my identity in conflict.
This is to Suzanne Moore, and her associate Julie Burchill, as well as a plethora of those first- and second-wave feminists who are regrettably stuck under a mountain of a rock and believe me to be a ‘man’, something I’ve never been in my entire life. I am not a “bed-wetter with a bad wig”, I am not a ‘dick in chicks’clothing’ and intersectionality is not stalling any arguments.
You’re staring HRT inthe face and not flinching? I didn’t flinch either when I started HRT almost two years ago; well, except when the needle goes in every week. You’ve experienced a lifetime of sexual harassment? So have I, interspersed with experiences of black eyes, broken noses, split lips,and bloody wrists. I am not bullying you, or am I? I may be, in the same way all those pesky gays are bullying straights for the right to marry, or how all us women are demanding to be treated as equals are bullying our male (and apparently female) oppressors.
It is pure audacity that Burchill and Moore consider themselves writers and thinkers, when a cursory Googling reveals that “cisgendered” is for people like them as “transgender” is for people like me. Cis and trans are terms we use from ancient times, it is not because it sounds like “cyst” or “cistern”; trans oppression of cis-gendered women is about as incensing as the Sandy Hook truthers, with about as much sense.
When I identify with ‘my people’, I cannot speak in terms of skin tone because those of my own skin color routinely persecute my people. I do not speak in terms of religion, because I was brought up in a religion that taught me my gender and sexuality were reprehensible. I do not speak in terms of sex, because the sex I was born in to routinely objectifies my people.
I do not speak in terms of anything other than gender, because I have never received hatred for who I am from those who buck the gender-binary, and they are who I align myself with in utter solidarity; what you say to my sisters and brothers is as good as saying it to me.
I fully agree with Vice President Joe Biden’s stance of my people’s discrimination being the civil rights issue of our generation. I’m not a punchline. I am not a joke. I am a person. I am sick of being marginalized and ignored, I am done being neglected by people who call themselves LGBT allies because that term was bandied around so much and so often with so little true understanding that nobody remembers the “BTQA~” that comes after “LG”.
LGBT equality is more than just about sexual equality, it is, at its basest form, true feminism: we are all equals on every level and should be treated with accorded respect and dignity.