January 14, 2013

 Observer removes controversial Julie Burchill article             





Transsexuals should cut it out

It’s never a good idea for those who feel oppressed to start bullying others in turn

Julie Burchill    
The Observer, Sunday 13 January 2013    

The brilliant writer Suzanne Moore and I go back a long way. I first met her when she was a young single mother living in a council flat; she took me out to interview me about my novel Ambition (republished by Corvus Books this spring, since you ask) for dear dead City Limits magazine. “I’ve got an entertaining budget of £12.50!” she said proudly. “Sod that, we’re having lobster and champagne at Frederick’s and I’m paying,” I told her. Half a bottle of Bolly later, she looked at me with faraway eyes: “Ooo, I could get to like this…” And so she did.

I have observed her rise to the forefront of this country’s great polemicists with a whole lot of pride – and just a tiny bit of envy. I am godmother to her three brilliant, beautiful daughters. Though we differ on certain issues we will have each other’s backs until the sacred cows come home.

With this in mind, I was incredulous to read that my friend was being monstered on Twitter, to the extent that she had quit it, for supposedly picking on a minority – transsexuals. Though I imagine it to be something akin to being savaged by a dead sheep, as Denis Healey had it of Geoffrey Howe, I nevertheless felt indignant that a woman of such style and substance should be driven from her chosen mode of time-wasting by a bunch of dicks in chicks’ clothing.

To my mind – I have given cool-headed consideration to the matter – a gaggle of transsexuals telling Suzanne Moore how to write looks a lot like how I’d imagine the Black and White Minstrels telling Usain Bolt how to run would look. That rude and ridic.

Here’s what happened. In a book of essays called Red: The Waterstones Anthology, Suzanne contributed a piece about women’s anger. She wrote that, among other things, women were angry about “not having the ideal body shape – that of a Brazilian transsexual”. Rather than join her in decrying the idea that every broad should aim to look like an oven-ready porn star, the very vociferous transsexual lobby and their grim groupies picked on the messenger instead.

I must say that my only experience of the trans lobby thus far was hearing about the vile way they have persecuted another of my friends, the veteran women’s rights and anti-domestic violence activist Julie Bindel – picketing events where she is speaking about such minor issues as the rape of children and the trafficking of women just because she refuses to accept that their relationship with their phantom limb is the most pressing problem that women – real and imagined – are facing right now.

Similarly, Suzanne’s original piece was about the real horror of the bigger picture – how the savagery of a few old Etonians is having real, ruinous effects on the lives of the weakest members of our society, many of whom happen to be women. The reaction of the trans lobby reminded me very much of those wretched inner-city kids who shoot another inner-city kid dead in a fast-food shop for not showing them enough “respect”. Ignore the real enemy – they’re strong and will need real effort and organisation to fight. How much easier to lash out at those who are conveniently close to hand!

But they’d rather argue over semantics. To be fair, after having one’s nuts taken off (see what I did there?) by endless decades in academia, it’s all most of them are fit to do. Educated beyond all common sense and honesty, it was a hoot to see the screaming mimis accuse Suze of white feminist privilege; it may have been this that made her finally respond in the subsequent salty language she employed to answer her Twitter critics: “People can just fuck off really. Cut their dicks off and be more feminist than me. Good for them.”

She, the other JB and I are part of the minority of women of working-class origin to make it in what used to be called Fleet Street and I think this partly contributes to the stand-off with the trannies. (I know that’s a wrong word, but having recently discovered that their lot describe born women as ‘Cis’ – sounds like syph, cyst, cistern; all nasty stuff – they’re lucky I’m not calling them shemales. Or shims.) We know that everything we have we got for ourselves. We have no family money, no safety net. And we are damned if we are going to be accused of being privileged by a bunch of bed-wetters in bad wigs.

It’s been noted before that cyberspace, though supposedly all new and shiny, is plagued by the age-old boredom of men telling women not to talk and threatening them with all kinds of nastiness if they persist in saying what they feel.

The trans lobby is now saying that it wasn’t so much the initial piece as Suzanne’s refusal to apologise when told to that “made” them drive her from Twitter. Presumably she is meant to do this in the name of solidarity and the “struggle”, though I find it very hard to imagine this mob struggling with anything apart from the English language and the concept of free speech.

To have your cock cut off and then plead special privileges as women – above natural-born women, who don’t know the meaning of suffering, apparently – is a bit like the old definition of chutzpah: the boy who killed his parents and then asked the jury for clemency on the grounds he was an orphan.

Shims, shemales, whatever you’re calling yourselves these days – don’t threaten or bully us lowly natural-born women, I warn you. We may not have as many lovely big swinging Phds as you, but we’ve experienced a lifetime of PMT and sexual harassment and many of us are now staring HRT and the menopause straight in the face – and still not flinching. Trust me, you ain’t seen nothing yet. You really won’t like us when we’re angry.



*A British government minister has called for columnist Julie Burchill to be sacked, accusing her of a “disgusting rant” against transsexuals.

*We don’t need Suzanne Moore and Julie Burchill to police the borders of womanhood 
*Julie Burchill Transgender Column Causes Firestorm For The Observer
*Unguarded and Poorly Observed: A Response to Julie Burchill


January 14, 2013

So You Want To Express Your Privileged Opinion In A Conversation About Oppression And Survival!


Oh opinions, everyone has them. Just like anuses and poor life decisions. Aren’t they great? Lots of people want to share their opinions, ESPECIALLY when other people are talking about something deeply personal, painful and emotionally traumatizing!

Well fear not, person who feels oh so important! I have a guide for you about that very thing you want to do! What is that? Expressing your gloriously necessary opinions in situations where you have tons of privilege and participate in horrible systems of violent oppression, of course!


                  COMMENTS ARE OFF

Exploring some trans feminist views:

May 3, 2011

Beyond Inclusion

by HG

Beyond Inclusion: Trans Women as Equal Partners in Feminism is an essay I wrote in April 2008 but have been continuously updating. It’s rather long–28 or so pages–and took a very long time to write (including a sick day and two all-nighters). It was originally written for submission to an academic journal.

I preface this that way because I feel awkward asking for a donation for this paper, since I’d very much like it to be available to everyone. However, in order to write theory sustainably, I need economic support from my community.


In which a cis feminist has a serious and long overdue rethink

I want to address some issues raised in Helen’s latest post, issues that I myself have been grappling with recently. The ongoing results* of said grappling have made me feel very ashamed of my past thoughts and misplaced beliefs with regards to trans people and trans issues. Here’s why.


Responding To The Feminist Anti-Transsexual Arguments

A recent, much-disparaged thread on I Blame The Patriarchy turned into a reprise of feminist arguments over transsexuality. Because the thread is on the long side, it has the benefit of providing several examples of feminist anti-trans arguments, as well as (thankfully) many feminist rebuttals.

I think the anti-trans arguments are wrong in every case. In most cases, I think they’re also bigoted and hateful. Let’s take a tour.



a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles



U.S: Equal employment policy updated to protect against discrimination based on gender identity(from BOP)

April 29, 2011

 U.S: Equal employment policy updated to protect against discrimination based on gender identity

Via Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund:

Department of Labor logoUpdated Equal Employment Opportunity Policy Bars Discrimination Based on Gender Identity

TLDEF applauds the United States Department of Labor’s announcement yesterday that it has taken steps to protect its transgender workers from employment discrimination. The Department of Labor added gender identity as a protected category in its equal employment opportunity statement. The policy applies to all hiring, promotion and disciplinary practices for the approximately 17,000 employees of the Department of Labor.

“Whether in private or public employment, what matters is not who you are, but how you do your job,” said TLDEF executive director Michael Silverman. “The Department of Labor now joins the many public and private employers that have recognized that discrimination is bad business. We applaud Labor Secretary Hilda Solis for her leadership on this issue.”

Transgender people face tremendous discrimination in the workplace. In a recent survey, 47% of transgender people reported being fired, or denied a job or promotion, just because of who they are. In a recent case, TLDEF filed a lawsuit on behalf of a transgender man who was fired from a male-only job solely because he is transgender.

“Employers like the Department of Labor set an example for other employers to follow. It is a great day when diversity is embraced and discrimination is rejected in the workplace,” added Silverman.


Cross-posted at Questioning Transphobia

This entry was posted on Friday, April 29th, 2011 at 11:36 am and is filed under Questioning Transphobia, U.S, Work, equality. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~( BOP:)


Woman Severely Beaten at McDonalds

April 27, 2011


(!Trigger Warning:  video extremely violent.!) 


***UPDATED*** Woman brutally beaten for using women’s toilet in fast-food restaurant

Trigger warning: violence against trans women

Restroom panic, sometimes also known as bathroom panic; the terms mean the same. They refer to the sense of moral outrage and indignation experienced by some cis people on realising that trans people (generally trans women) use the same public toilets as they do. It’s an irrational fear grounded in the transphobic notion that trans women, regardless of our legal, medical or surgical status should be denied access to restrooms consistent with our gender presentation.


(from QT):

UK Government Equalities Office online survey of transgender people(from BOP)

April 17, 2011

In its first Transgender e-bulletin, (direct link to PDF) the coalition Government’s Minister for Equalities, Lynne Featherstone, says:

 We recognise transgender issues are distinct and need to be addressed separately. This is why we will also be publishing the first ever cross Government transgender equality action plan later in the year. Highlighting where distinct action is needed in addition to the measures outlined in the LGB&T action plan.

But we won’t be successful without your involvement. To make sure we really deliver for the trans community, we need to know how you think we should be progressing the agenda. So I am delighted to introduce the first trans E-Bulletin, which gives you an opportunity to do just this. It includes an ONLINE SURVEY asking you to tell us the areas you would like us to concentrate on, how you would like us to communicate with you and to contribute your views and ideas. We will use the findings of this first survey to shape the Government transgender equality action plan and formulate initial Government commitments. The next E-Bulletins and surveys will focus on specific themes, depending on the results of this survey and feedback from meetings with you. We plan to issue E-Bulletins and surveys every other month.

The survey targets UK people only and closes on 6 May 2011. Any queries should be directed to Ms Featherstone adds that “personal details will be kept strictly confidential and not shared with anyone outside the Government Equalities Office“.


Edited to add: The term transgender does not seem to be clearly defined anywhere in the bulletin, although potential respondents may find useful descriptions at the NHS Choices website, the T-Vox wiki or elsewhere on the web.



a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles



Spring festival of the goddess Ceres (April 12th–18)

April 12, 2011

Cerealia :

In ancient Roman religion, the Cerealia was the major festival celebrated for the grain goddess Ceres. It was held for seven days from mid- to late April.

The Cerialia was a festival with ludi (‘games’) celebrated by the ancient Romans in honor of the goddess Ceres. The Cerialia probably ran from April 12-19. It may have been on the Ides (April 13) or on April 7. There was a special flamen (priest) for Ceres called the flamen Cerialis and games were held in the Circus Maximus.
Ceres was associated with the earth goddess Tellus. Her association with Demeter came after consultation with the Sibylline books in 496.
Little is known about the cerealia.



a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles



Paging Mr Kettle, there’s a Ms Pot here would like a word with you…(crossposted from BOP)

April 11, 2011

(From BOP):

April 9th, 2011

Everyone’s favourite celebrity journalist, Ms Bindel, has noticed that the NUS LGBT Campaign Conference 2011, in item 204 Zuck Off! of its schedule of Motions and Amendments (direct link to PDF), believes:

That Julie Bindel is vile.

Ms Bindel’s reaction (via Twitter)?

How utterly professional and dignified NUS

For the record, the full text of the NUS LGBT proposed resolution is as follows:

204 Zuck Off!

Conference believes

  1. Professor Ken Zucker is a clinical psychologist who was invited as a keynote speaker to the Division of Clinical Psychology annual conference this year.
  2. Zuckers work includes the “treatment” and diagnosis of children with Gender Identity Disorder. This diagnosis is based on rigid gender roles, with young girls choosing not to dress in stereotypically ‘feminine’ clothes being a common reason for referral to Zucker’s GID clinic.
  3. Zuckers treatment involves forcing children to conform to rigid gender roles.





a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles



Government shut down

April 9, 2011


So we’re shutting down the government over birth control and pap smears (Feministe)


The prospect of a government shutdown has official Washington frozen in its tracks.With seven hours until the  government shuts down, the two parties retreated to their respective corners Friday afternoon, as Democrats continued to insist that abortion policy was hanging up the completion of the 2011 stopgap spending bill, and Republicans contended that there was no firm agreement on how deep to cut government spending.



Why fiscal conservatives care about Planned Parenthood
(Guardian uk)


(Government shutdown:Federal government shutdown: Questions and answers)



a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles



video spotlight:Bell Nanthita

April 3, 2011

Thailand Got Talent S1 – audition Bell Nanthita(เบลล์ นันทิตา)


a new series of Transfeminist and Feminist articles