This story or actually stories is so full of different information I’ve hesitated to comment on it.
More questions than answers.
Was it an accident? Was it deliberate? Did the person being accused of pushing her know her or were they strangers? Was it in anger or were they just drunk or high and fooling around?
I’m going to let those questions wait for investigators to sort out.
What bothers me is how the UK press seems to use some of the grossest most abusive and transphobic language I’ve seen. Not only in this story but in every story that involves a transsexual or transgender person.
I’ve listened to so much America bashing from Brits about the short coming of the treatment of TS/TG folks in the US that I kind expect better.
Who set the language standards, the style guides for the press in the UK? Benny Hill, a scandal tabloid or Monty Python?
I’m far less up tight than many who write of the oppression of people whose lives have been impacted by trans prefixed words. I don’t think transvestite is a bad word and don’t associate it with some sort of pathology. I use trannie as a term that came from the streets where it was our word.
In the US we have GLAAD. They help us mediate respectful language. We don’t always achieve it but by calling them on it we can gradually improve the language used.
In cases of someone with an uncertain status transwoman or transman and using the pronoun of presentation unless told different is a reasonable standard to shoot for.
As far as I am concerned gender variant is as bad as “she-male” in that both create an impression of perversion as well as making it sound as though the victim deserved it.
If some one says they are transvestite, cross-dresser, drag-queen, transgender, transsexual, post-op transsexual transwoman, transman, woman of transsexual history… The words one chooses to describe their relationship to a trans prefixed word are the words people writing about them should use.
We are fighting abusive language that frames our lives and separates us from the rest of humanity.
At the same time there is an element of being members of a minority culture and so dividing up and using abusive language to members of different groups that are different from us but that the majority culture lumps together with us is sort of counter productive while pressing for respectful language is beneficial to all.