Sunday, February 1, 2009

When Drag Queens Attack -- a response

I got an interesting response to this post, and so I'll repost the comment in toto and then attempt to respond as best I know how:

Who these people truly were or why they were so mad is a based on 1/2 of the participants of the fight.

Isn't it possible that the crew of the McDonald's who hurled hateful epaulets at transgender woman?

That wouldn't be a show for you to laugh at would it? unbelievable. Yeas it is slanderous and highly inconsiderate of the "allied" community to laugh at us and hate us. WHO ARE YOU AND DO YOU CARE ABOUT US or are we just a token for you to get readers?

I would feel better if planetransgender's post's did not appear on this blog.You can acomidate that request by removing planetransgender from your blog list.

At their request, I have not linked the blog. But you can back read and figure it out.

I have written and rewritten this post, each time trying to take on a different attitude towards their response. I've written the shocked post, I've written the apologetic post, the angry post, the blah blah blah. Each one was longer and more boring than the one before. Let me, instead, try to condense and go over why I feel each bit:

First, anger (at them): It is absurd and a failing on your part to attack me on my gender street cred. The writer of the above comment states to have read my blog for a while, and to know me somewhat. Honestly, if you do not know my utter support, love, adoration, and respect for trans-identified persons, then you clearly haven't been paying attention. And do not assume that because I do not identify as trans myself does not mean that I have not been the subject of stereotyping, stigma, and discrimination based on my gender expression.

Second, anger (at myself): I was an idiot not to better preface that post. I assumed that people would, naturally, pick up on that the like provocation for the fight was transphobic slurs and nastiness on the part of (clearly) idiotic McDonald's employees. I should have written more and assumed less... for someone as loquacious as I can be, I certainly kept my mouth shut. And I am one for making sure your opinion is known and heard.

Third, apologetic: I'm sorry it was offensive, and perhaps it was not the best of posts in the world. I'm sorry it offended, and I'm sorry I did not do more in terms of deconstructing the news reports. Instead, I just threw it up there without concern for how people would feel about it. And for that, I am deeply sorry.

Fourth, apologetic (addendum): Please note that I am not sorry for posting it.

Fifth, shock: I am amazed that, after everything this community has been through for the last year, and after my giant turnaround on ENDA (from supporting a trans-noninclusive bill to lambasting the HRC for their support of it), that we are still fighting silly fights over non-issues (Rick Warren anyone?). More importantly, that anyone would turn on an ally -- and someone who is, truly, an ally -- for a sheer minor affront. Additionally, that the writer of the comments missed the implication of my words: that I was actually praising these women. Do it, girls, fight back. Don't let homophobic and transphobic assholes get away with it. Now, maybe violence was not the best answer, but they did something. And, for that, they should be applauded.

Sixth, disappointment: Despite the ongoing debate over the word "tranny," I'm disappointed that trans-identified persons have not made the attempt to reclaim the word, much like I have taken on the moniker of "queer," or the black community has for the term "nigger." The author of the blog is a smart person... I would think that this would be a priority. Take the power away from hate. Also, for all the things in the world to get angry over, a bit of humor -- and you have to admit that it was funny for a lot of reasons, whether the "haha, silly trannies" or "haha, terrible news reporting" or "haha, get it girls!" funny -- should not be one of them. Don't come after me, your supporter and your ally. Go throw malatov cocktails into the halls of injustice. Go sledge hammer the walls of division and difference. Go run a truck through the windows of... yadda yadda yadda. (This blog does not support violence in any form. And, if it did, it would come with a blueprint for action, not just vague suggestions.) UPDATE: Also disappointed that an activist would not take the opportunity to educate rather than fight. Rather than think, "this guy is ideologically on my side, he's just a little off on his message, maybe I should help him understand." Rather, I get yelled at. That's disappointing.

Seventh, confused: Of all the things that someone would take offense to on my blog ... this is what you choose? Please. My prolific use of the work "fuck" is more anger-worthy. Fuck.

Finally, proud: Thank you for saying your piece. Thank you for speaking out and calling me out. Thank you for keeping me in check. I owe you all the respect in the world for that. Not enough people do that.

Anyways, that's all. I hope that better clarifies my position.

Update: My response in the comments has been deleted.


planet trans said...

It verifies you you are a narrow minded self promoting bigot.
The next time a transgender person lies dead on the street I will send a note on your blog, just so you are aware another person was murdered. At least you got some attention. Was that FREIRCE? Maybe someone standing up to your self indulgence angers you. Good.

Barry Floore said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I'm sorry but I don;t get this hatey. Yeah maybe the blog pushed the envelope a bit. But NOT as much as the CNN Story. Are you taking the rage out on CNN also.

And just to be clean. Not that i am defending the employees. But if they did say nasty slurs. WHICH ISN'T RIGHT.

Was it right for the Transgendered individuals to grab a CROWBAR and run in the store awinging it.

Driving away and making a complaint would have been much better.

planet trans said...

I am curious what was so offensive since our last conversation that a comment was deleted? You have voiced a willingness to communicate, which is appreciated. For the record there is no justifying by anyone Transgender or allied who resorts to using defamatory language as defined by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation"s publication "Media Guide".
It contains this definition.

"Defamatory Language"

"fag," "faggot," "dyke," "homo," "sodomite," "queen," "she-male," "he-she," "it," "tranny" and similar epithets.
The criteria for using these derogatory terms should be the same as those applied to hate words for other groups: they should not be used except in a direct quote that reveals the bias of the person quoted. So that such words are not given credibility in the media, it is preferred that reporters say, "The person used a derogatory word for a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender person."

I am not attempting to evangelize about the incredible GLBT church I attend(woops) or dictate morality. Just a little respect, thats all transgender people ask for. It takes huge courage from day one to the day we are allowed to forever remain with Jesus to live our lives authentically. After Church to day I patronized a McDonald's. As I got out of my car I became afraid. When I saw that a black man was working a register I changed lanes. I was loved at that McDonald's. I can not tell you how very, very much being personally greeted eye to eye with a cisgender woman and being called Ma'am means to me.
Maybe next time i go to this McDonald's I will think less of the Hatred expressed on some web sites and think of instead this wonderful woman i met last time.

Jeffery said...

I'll start off by admitting my ignorance to transgendered issues. I've watched documentaries on the topic. "TransAmerica" is one of my favorite films. Beyond that my pool of knowledge is rather shallow. I do not know any transgendered persons first hand.

That being said I am still confused by the controversy over the original post "When Drag Queens Attack." I've read and reread the original post several times. I fail to find where QueerCincinnati directly used the term tranny. Can someone point it out to me? Maybe I'm just slow. If anything, perhaps the offense should be naming the attackers as drag queens. For all anyone knows they could have been footballers who just happened to be wearing female attire.

Was the post in poor taste? Very likely, but then I often get tired of the white wash, high pedestal, we have to watch our every word in case we offend someone, political correctness of the world we live in. I realized right off that the post was tongue in cheek. To me the incident in Memphis is funny in a scary sort of way. From the mental picture of 3, to be PC, angry persons in female clothing attacking McDonald's employees with a crowbar and Wet Floor sign to the obvious ignorance of said employees during the interview. It is absurdly hilarious. And let's not forget the reporter and CNN. Someone at CNN fell asleep at the politically correct wheel.

Self promoting? Hell yeah. QueerCincinnati can hardly deny that. Hate-mongering, homophobic, bigot? Not so much. He can be crass at times, but then who isn't on occasion. What surprises me most is that after such name calling by Ms. Busey she still expects an open dialog. I can't help but wonder is she realizes how bigoted her own words read. "When I saw that a black man was working a register I changed lanes." I'm sure she doesn't mean offense to African-American males working minimum wage jobs everywhere. Perhaps she meant she purposely changed lanes to the be greeted by the black man for some greater good. Perhaps not. I'm still not clear on that.

If nothing else, this back and forth has caused me to look at several transgendered blogs. I'm starting to deepen my knowledge pool. Even from those transgendered bloggers that use the word tranny.