Since the late 1960s/early 1970s there has been a certain faction that has self defined as radical feminist/lesbian separatists that thrives on viciously attacking women born transsexual or transgender.
Since 1970 I have seen one sister in particular, Beth Elliott, bear the brunt of these episodic attacks of unmitigated hatred.
Beth is about the same age I am. We met on a couple of occasions in the early 1970s. My impression of her was that she looked like the typical hippie chick of that era, the same way I did.
Thus all the smears about some sort of exaggerated fembot presentation are pretty much lie based.
I share something else with Beth Elliott. At different times we both were part of the Lesbian Tide Collective. She was there at the beginning, I was there at the end.
It is to the credit of the other women of the Tide Collective that we were judged in a way that treated us like honest human beings. We were accepted as women, feminist and lesbians.
Therefore I was deeply saddened by a report by Monica Roberts on TransGriot: http://transgriot.blogspot.com/2010/11/rad-fems-still-letting-transhate-flow.html that someone named BevJo is rehashing the faith based hatred expounded by Mary Daly, Janice Raymond and Sheila Jeffries.
Yesterday I put up a post about transsexuals who hate other transsexuals and use the same sort of language used by BevJo, which is in turn the same language used by Porno Pete La Barbera and the rest of the Christo-Fascists so aptly labeled as hate groups by Southern Poverty Law Center.
Some of the strangest forms of attack upon Beth in the article referenced by Ms. Roberts, which may be read at: http://tinyurl.com/2d3lyoj are the physical appearance based ad hominems based on hair length and looking like heterosexual women are supposed to look. As an aside, when I moved to Texas I found my lesbian version of gaydar was thrown out of whack by meeting a lot of women who looked like stereotypical dykes but who were heterosexual women with ranches and horses.
While women like BevJo are a minority within the lesbian community their hatred has a corrosive effect on those sisters targeted.
For one thing it makes it hard for women whose lives have been impacted by transsexualism or transgenderism to be out and honest when doing so can result in brutal hate based attacks. Therefore when we work on feminist/lesbian issues we keep our mouths shut out of fear that simply saying transsexualism/transgenderism is also a feminist issue will cause us to be subjected to the same sort of brutal attacks we have seen others receive.
The hatred we are subjected to is also a form of misogyny.
Julia Serano’s Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity offers an excellent analysis of how “transphobia” is really a form of misogyny.
I have seen this as being part of the reason why those of us who were assigned male at birth and transition to female are treated with far more contempt and bigotry than those who were assigned female at birth and transition to male. Those who transition to male are seen as moving up the social ladder whereas those who transition to female are viewed as moving down that same social ladder.
There is no room in an absolutist male/female binary paradigm for those who are outside that paradigm. This is a position that is at odds with the idea of maleness and femaleness being a preponderance of traits that results in society treating a person in a manner that socializes them into approved masculine or feminine roles.
Prior to coming out and telling people I was transsexual I was chastised for physical traits and ways of acting that were deemed feminine. When I came out those same aspects of my being were reinforced in a positive manner and fear of being seen as feminine was replaced with fear of being seen as masculine.
This isn’t a novel observation. We observed it in our groups in the early 1970 and I heard the same thing in groups 30 years later. The more one is treated as a woman by society the more woman one becomes.
I honestly think that what bothers these “Radical Feminists” is the way in which we disturb their theological paradigm of there being some sort of total difference between men and women rather than a continuum.
There is no difference between these people and the Christo-fascists who attack LGBT/TQ people as well as oppress women.
They are radical in the same sense their spiritual kin the Klu Klux Klan and Aryan Nation are radical and they are wrong on every level.
Their very arguments display the depth of their errors of thinking. They so often double bind women with transsexualism or transgenderism.
If we like men our motivation for getting SRS is to slavishly serve them and to seduce unsuspecting men into having sex with us and turn them gay. We can do this because we have invisible magic male chromosomes that will some how turn these men gay. Or maybe it is because our sex parts were changed from male to female and still contain male cooties even though both male and female sex parts grow from the same set of cells depending on hormone levels and their interactions with genetic switches that guide development.
Men use the deception excuse as rational for murdering us. Even when they meet us in trans-bars that are clearly identified as such. Or in courtroom where we were called before a judge who used our birth name.
This is the same mindset that labels our boyfriends as gay even when our relationships are heterogendered and the pre-op sister has the same forms of non-vaginal sex with her partner that assigned female at birth women often use. Hormone shrunken parts or surgically reassigned parts must have magical powers if they can make a straight man gay.
But as I said one cannot win with bigots.
If one is influenced by the heterosexual socialization that is used to sell clothing and insecurity to heterosexual women then one is perpetuating stereotypes and acting as a tool of the patriarchy to oppress women.
If we like women our motivation for getting SRS is to seduce lesbians into having sex with us and rape them with our vaginas. Because if we can get them to have sex with us our magic invisible all powerful chromosomes will make them straight. Of course our only possible motivation for changing the sex we were assigned at birth is to act as tools of the patriarchy to seduce lesbians away from the path of true lesbianism with our all powerful chromosomal cooties.
Now here’s where it gets strange. If we dress like our heterosexual peers we are perpetuating sexist stereotypes. But if we dress and act just like our dyke peers we are somehow infiltrating them to pollute them.
I won’t respect this mindset by calling it transphobia. It is hatred and bigotry pure and simple.
It comes out of the same ideological mind set as racism and anti-Semitism. Or the Taliban Christian mind set that demonizes gay and lesbian people.
But I will go one step further.
Bigots like BevJo can rot in their own pool of puss and hateful venom…
I would rather be part of the general Left. A tree hugging dyke with another WBT life partner.
Together we support our causes which do not include dealing with people like BevJo.
Generally speaking this bigotry is somewhat anachronistic. As more and more TS/TG women and men have come out people have seen how we are as varied as cis-sex/gender folks.
Transsexual/transgender men and women are not the enemy. Many of us, perhaps more than the general population, support feminism, anti-racism and a variety of progressive causes. But like the general public some of us do not.
But the most ironic thing of all is how women like BevJo sound identical in their bigotry to a group one of the frequent commentators to this blog has labeled the “transsexual sisters of purity” i.e. the Classic Transsexual/HBS” set.
I guess that, in and of itself, is indicative of the class of criticism spewing forth from this self appointed set of “radical lesbian feminists”. They have achieved sameness with Christo-Fascists and self-hating transsexuals who have decided they are the only real transsexuals.
Even more interesting is how the biggest spewer of this bigotry on the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival Chat board (One Down) was exposed as having been born transsexual herself. She was using bigotry to throw suspicion away from herself.
I can only wonder how many of the other radical lesbian separatists are in fact using their bigoted rants to hide having been transsexuals themselves?
If the bullshit from the Classic Transsexual/HBS set is any indication I would bet there are more than a few.
I would also bet that like the loudest homo hating preachers are the most likely to be on the down low, that the loudest transsexual transgender hating people also have some secrets they are hiding.