just a friendly reminder (from a trans* person)
Just a friendly reminder that some men have vulvas and some women have penises.
Just a friendly reminder that there are more than two genders.
Just a friendly reminder that not all non-female allies to feminism are male.
Just a friendly reminder that it can be hurtful to tell a trans* person who was assigned male at birth but doesn’t identify as such now that they experience or have experienced “male privilege.” We may need to find a more sensitive way to say whatever it is we’re trying to say. A way that doesn’t imply that being misgendered is a privilege.
Just a friendly reminder that even though many cis-het males are terribly unaware of their own privileges, you really don’t know if somebody is cisgender, heteroseuxal or male unless they tell you.
Just a friendly reminder that gender equality means equal respect, equal recognition, and equal opportunity for ALL genders.
23 Responses to “just a friendly reminder (from a trans* person)”
[…] By curtispenfold Just a friendly reminder that some men have vulvas and some women have penises. Just a friendly reminder that there are more than two genders. Just… …read more […]
Definitely time to unfollow you, wow. I’m speechless.
A post about kindness and sensitivity compels you to unfollow Curtis? Why?
Literally what part of this left you speechless? Common courtesy and an attempt at understanding fellow humans?
Stupidest thing I have ever read in my life besides that essay you wrote a month or so ago. Congrats on outdoing yourself.
What’s stupid about it?
Being kind and sensitive to people is stupid?
“Just a friendly reminder that it can be hurtful to tell a trans* person who was assigned male at birth but doesn’t identify as such now that they experience or have experienced “male privilege.” We may need to find a more sensitive way to say whatever it is we’re trying to say. A way that doesn’t imply that being misgendered is a privilege.”
Just, no. Seriously, you guys are always saying that there is nothing wrong with telling all the white cis-het males that they are privileged, in telling all males that they are privileged just by being male, even if they aren’t wanting or asking for that privilege. And now you’re like “BUT WAIT! IT MIGHT HURT THEIR FEELINGS TO HEAR IT BECAUSE THEY DON’T ACTUALLY WANT THEIR PENIS!” In your logic, how does that matter?! A man who tries to make things equal and doesn’t desire the privilege given him because he is male, who feels male, still deserves to be called out because his feelings don’t really matter when you’re weighing them against those who are oppressed. (Apparently.) Yet, someone who has grown up a man, and is given male privilege yet doesn’t want it because he doesn’t feel like a man, suddenly he gets a “oh you’re so oppressed (In a different way mind you) so we wont call you out on the fact that you have been given privilege even though you don’t want it.”
Just no. Seriously stop. Have some consistency. Oh wait, I guess you do. It’s as long as everyone agrees with your convoluted logic and opinion, they are right and freedom fighters. And if they don’t, they are cruel, rude, and bigoted. Seriously, this blog just keeps getting worse and more illogical.
First, keep in mind there are many people who write for this blog so it is not reasonable nor desirable to expect total consistency between posts.
Second, I fail to see the inconsistency. The author was not saying that the trans* person never benefited from male privilege, only that we should also remember and be sensitive to the fact that they may now suffer from oppression from being trans*. The author was calling for kindness and consideration in how we phrase things–that’s all. I think that’s a pretty universal concept and applies to all people.
Transgender individuals who were assigned male at birth do not just start suffering oppression when they transition. The oppression and suppression begins much earlier.
The difficulty with discussing the privileges of those who are not (and usually never were) men but are READ AS MEN (or were read as men in the past) is that some of those privileges they might receive are deeply intertwined with misgendering, a cause of gender dysphoria for many transgender individuals.
For those unfamiliar with gender dysphoria, this blog post goes further into just how painful that experience is.
I think you are trying to excuse your Male privilege Curtis.
I’m not denying that me and other non-males who are read as males have experienced specific privileges for such. But some points I hope cisgender feminists can consider when discussing male privilege are:
1) Those privileges only were given to us through misgendering, a cause of dysphoria for many of us. If you read the link I posted above, you’ll better understand how dysphoria feels for many of us, and I’d hardly think a person would be able to call that a privilege.
2) When we decide to stop hiding and express our true gender, those privileges are often taken away. It’s normal to lose housing, lose employment, be disowned, and experience violence, murder, and rape during and after a transition.
I truly want to understand this post, but am having difficulty–perhaps someone can explain to me how it is that this blog calls itself young MORMON feminists…yet how does this post reconcile itself to the Proclamation On The Family (with its’ very clear statements about gender)? Not trying to be hurtful–I just truly do not understand how a person, or a website such as this, can consider themselves Mormon, or affiliated with Mormonism, yet apparently reject/disagree with such a basic doctrinal concept as gender as it’s explained in the Proclamation. Please help me understand.
And corollary to this, it seems that the feminist movement in the LDS church expects the church to change for them–instead of them changing and becoming a “new creature in Christ.” Are we not, as Mormons, on a path of becoming more like Christ would have is be–rather than us demanding that He change His church and commandments to fit our personal view of how things should be?
I consider myself a feminist in many, many ways…but posts like this make me wonder if those who run this particular blog are really “Mormon feminists” or something else that isn’t really Mormon at all. Please help me to understand how this makes sense to you. Again, not trying to be argumentative or hurtful–I want to be a part of the conversation–especially since I can feel the sincere lain that this particular poster is living in. Help me understand, please.
Correction: I can feel the sincere pain that this poster is in. (Previous misspell).
Yeah, most people who are a part of the Young Mormon Feminist group, or who write here, don’t consider themselves Mormon, or (like Curtis) have left the church, or don’t agree with basic doctrines and teachings and want the church to change to match their personal opinion. If you are truly looking for a safe Mormon Feminist place where you will still feel uplifted, this group is NOT the place. A lot of Mormon bashing goes on, and a lot of general authority bashing. It’s just getting further and further away from Mormonism. You can tell, as you pointed out, by how the blogs tell you doctrine is not true, and the many stories about people leaving the church or finding comfort in not keeping the commandments. And the creator, Hannah, she helped with Ordain Woman, a movement that is considered for many to be apostate and hinted at by the brethren as such. Their founder was excommunicated for her actions and disobedience. Many Young Mormon Feminists are members of her group and were angered and there was a great deal of talk about losing testimony and leaving the church.
This is not the place for Mormons who want to investigate feminism. This is the place for those who don’t support the church. I fervently suggest looking elsewhere for feminist sisters.
You do not have to be an active Mormon to write for this blog. Many authors — myself included — have had traumatic experiences connected with the church and the YMF blog is a place to find peace and support.
Chilanga, while I cannot speak for Curtis, I generally agree with what he’s saying in this post, so lerhaps I can try and help. For ome thing, the better one understands what being transgender is, the weaker the proclamation becomes as an argument against trans* people or transition, even compared to how the proclamation is commonly used against gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, and even asexual people. The proclamation states that gender is an essential characteristic–NOT sex. Who’s to say we can look at another person’s body and automatically know the gender of the person inside?
There is still, obviously, the language reinforcing the gender binary (male and female). The way I understand it, references in scripture to “male and female” (such as in the creation story) are similar to references to “heaven and hell” (only) insofar as we know that the latter is a false dichotomy because of the degrees of glory, so what bars us from knowing the gender binary is a false dichotomy when there are those of us who legitimately feel we are neither male nor female? (Or both, or somewhere in berween, or flowing between them, etc.)
Also, while I’m talking about scriptural language, the family proclamation is not canonized scripture and therefore does not constitute a source of official doctrine. The way Joseph Smith set up the church necessitates a vote by common consent before a document can be considered scriptural amd therefore a source of doctrine. The proclamation, like gc talks and miscellaneous church publications, are not a source of doctrine, but an attempt at synthesising and presenting doctrinal ideas. And being written by imperfect mortals, these things do, in certain areas, fall short due to a lack of insight, which is necessarily present in one degree or another. Even within the scriptures, I try to pay attention to what’s quoted from a member of the godhead and what isn’t.
I hope that helps clear up some things for you. ^^ I know I didn’t manage to cover every single point, but like I said, I’m speaking for myself as a Mormon feminist who follows this blog.
Thank you, Curtis, for this thoughtful, considerate essay and the definitions and wording you provided to help people refer to others in terms that are more appropriate, while attempting to avoid misgendering due to habit or society’s standards.
For those of you who would unfollow Curtis simply because he asked you to be more considerate of those who are not cisgender, I think you will miss out on a great person who has a lot to offer. It is your right to do so, but there was no real need to state it here, either. I hope that all of you can be considerate of others who are not cisgender as you meet and interact with them.
Reblogged this on meet me at the pear tree.
This is a great post. I’m sorry you have to deal with so much bigotry in the comments 😦
Stupid article. I support the LGBT crowd but I’m not going to buy into all this “I’m a genderfluid, non-binary, two-spirit transvestite with asexual tendencies” crap. You’re either straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, or asexual, and maybe you like dressing the gender that you aren’t. Pick one that applies and move on. Coming up with all these ridiculous semantics and unnecessary, superfluous terms. You won’t see me reading your posts anymore. I’m so fed up with all this sugarcoated politically-correct garbage.
If you don’t support transgender people it’s a little bit misleading to say you support the lgbT crowd. There is so much nuance to sexuality and gender that dismissing a bunch of people just because “ridiculous semantics” and “unnecessary, superfluous terms” is trivializing a much bigger issue.
Sure some people just like dressing up as the opposite sex but some people have intense dysphoria about their bodies and the gender role assigned to them. There has been research done showing actual brain differences in transgender people that fit closer to their gender than their assigned sex. These people aren’t just playing dress-up. This is something incredibly important to their health and well being.
Yes some of the terms are a little bit over the top but first of all filling a void in language that needs to be filled is good and important, and second, it’s invalidating to dismiss people’s legitimate, personal, important identities as “sugar coated politically-correct garbage.”
I misread “Young Mormon Feminists” as “Young Moron Feminists”
My brain knows how to read between the lines