One of the more bizarre acts of the powerless that has become a substitute for direct action and demanding equality even for those who are different has been the use of euphemisms and word games.
Yesterday there was omne of those columns over at Pam’s House Blend that just left me saying WTF.
Way too much of the fighting between people with transsexualism and people with transgenderism has been about those with a political agenda hegemonically colonizing and erasing the lives lived by people who had sex change operations and do not hesitate to call them sex change or sex reassignment operations.
Many of us are as guilty of the use of euphemisms as those Transgender activists with the whole bit about it not being a sex change operation but sex confirmation surgery and it not being transsexualism but rather HBS. For that matter there is a particularly bigoted set that identifies as “Classic Transsexual” coded language of the same nature as the use of “family” by the bigoted Christo-fascist right wingers.
As for me I had a sex change operation as did my friends Diane, Laurie, (all five or so Lauries among my friends), Leslie, Kim, Jan etc. Screw Glaad. We used transsexual and sex change as well as trannie or transy 40 years before this language was declared Verboten by a bunch of politically motivated people in academe and transgender activists who wish to erase the differences between transsexual and transgender lives.
There are differences. rather than my getting pissed off and screaming about those differences I am going to make the point that we know, those of you who haven’t had a sex change operation do not know. We get angry when pre-ops and non-ops tell us there isn’t because no one knows what is between our legs. Or the one about how it is only important to my sex partners.
This is a particularly Barbie or Disney type genital erasing point of view that assumes one does not pee several times a day or wash. Yeah it matters and yes it is different. One of the big aha moments is the first time you pee after decatheterization and dekinking of your urethra.
I have my own style sheet. I do not use transgender as a substitute for transsexual or transsexualism when some has had surgery or is surgery tracked. I do not use transgender as an umbrella term when using it in that manner erases the differences between people who have had their lives defined by other transprefixed words like transvestite or transsexual.
I see Transgender as Umbrella as a fiction. a political identity created by lazy people who wish to use those of us who had surgery to further the politics of those who have not.
Anti-colonial wars get fought over such matters.
By the way… To further discourse I agreed to stop calling names. I did not agree to surrender my principles. It does take two to make a fight and the systematic hegemonic erasure of the differences between transsexual and transgender is an act of unilateral aggression. It is not in the spirit of, “In spite of our having major differences let us work together for things that would benefit our different groups of constituents.”
Mostly though… Autumn, nice words and polite fictions are a piss poor substitute for an equality that recognizes differences and does not use those differences to deny rights every human should have no matter what their color or sex. The right to dress and present as one wishes is pretty implicit and shouldn’t require us to all be transgender or gender variants when gender itself is a fiction that oppresses women.