Gender is Plastic Fantastic Bullshit

The other night I watched Patti Smith’s Dream of Life on PBS.  Patti rocks as an artist, poet, mother and person. Beat, hippie, punk rocker.

She is iconoclastic.

To me gender is advertising and selling of sexism. Gender is the preaching of misogynistic roles that condemn women to secondary lives of servitude.

It says that it isn’t enough to simply be male because there is a dick between your legs or female because there is a pussy there.  Instead gender says those physical aspects are not the most important but instead the important thing is how closely you adhere to these socially defined roles.

I do not see gender as a binary that defines one as male or female.

It could take a long paragraph or an entire biography to describe my gender since it would subject all those questions on the MMPI to intense scrutiny and not a dialectical analysis.

Some people get angry with me when I complicate my gender with words like hippie, soft dyke, political, working class.  I’m not a “lady” and jump in the shit of people who tell me it is important for women to be ladies.  I ask, “Why?”

I do not believe in fascist “family values”.  That is where all this gender crap lives.

The TV droned in the back ground today as I kicked back and read.  There was a lot of mindless drivel on.  Bowl games, reality shows, and endless advertising.  Really stupid sexist advertising with people acting more bizarrely than in some absurdist play.  The men are all hypermasculine, moronic, chest thumping, obese dickwads who need viagra or some other hard-on pill and the women are hairless equally stupid skanks plastered with more make-up and more stereotype projecting than 99.99% of the drag queens I have known.

I work in a big box where I see all these little boys being indoctrinated with this mindless masculinity out of fear that if they don’t turn in to these hypermasculine stereotype they will grow up gay.  All the little girls are slathered in pink, taught to stay virgin skanks until marriage.

Kathy Griffith nailed it last night with a bit about Milley Cyrus/Hannah Montana at the Grammys practically flashing while sliding up and down a stripper pole.

In a world where this sort of fundamentalist think is the norm there will be a substantial minority who will not conform, perhaps even a majority since TV Nation/Commercial Nation is totally divorced from reality.  Does this make everyone who fails to conform to this fictitious binary some sort of “gender variant”?

I think of how kids police each other for any failure to adhere to these fictitious stereotypes created by the media.  “That’s sooo gay!”

When in reality some of the stereotypical sexualized gendered behavior thrust on little kids almost matches Mackenzie Phillips’ book about consensual incest with her father for creepiness it becomes time to question what purpose gender serves.

Now I’m not talking about some internal sense of self as male or female.  Calling that gender and confusing that sense of self with all sorts of externally indoctrinated plastic fantastic crap only serves those doing the programming.

And chances are most consumers of gender aren’t consciously doing the programming.  Women aren’t being served by programming that teaches them that “real women” are submissive consumers of shiny objects who need to look to men and god rather than to themselves for wisdom and knowledge.

Being a man or woman isn’t dependent upon the clothes on your back, the car you drive or other products you consume.

Yet the superficial is what is sold and too often that is all there is to gender, roles played, clothes worn, products bought and consumed.

The biggest threat from the hippies of the 1960s and the punk rockers a few years later was their anti-consumption. It was their showing the plastic emptiness of replacing life with consumer objects.

I’m reading Pam Tent’s book about the Cockettes, a theatrical troupe in early 1970s San Francisco.  About 9 room flats rented communally for $225, thrift store clothes and the wonderful creativity before the New York critics tore them apart.  They fucked with gender and all its stereotypes and offered a savage critique of the artificiality of gender roles.

Patti Smith,  Chrissie Hynde, Suzi Quatro, the Runaways and all the rocker girls/women who wore black leather jackets and rejected indoctrinated and advertised plastic femininity offered a critique of gender as commercial artifact.

So now we have the transgender as umbrella advocates hanging their human rights not on freedom to be, not on freedom of expression but rather on this fictional idea of gender as something real rather than something that is the product of indoctrination and advertising.

11 Responses to “Gender is Plastic Fantastic Bullshit”

  1. Véronique Says:

    No distinction between gender identity and gender expression? Seems like you’re talking gender expression above, and I pretty much agree. But I think my gender identity as female is real. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t have transitioned and I wouldn’t be two weeks away from SRS.

    • Suzan Says:

      Is your sense of self as female gender identity or sex identity?

      Too much of what we are supposed to say is shaped by the Prince of many names and talks he had with Robert Stoller. One of which was that transsexuals want to be women (gender) rather than female (sex).

      In the early 1970s I used the phrase “core gender identity” now I would, like Julia Serano, opt for “core sex identity” and leave gender out of it because all the gender stuff has become a way of keeping women the second sex.

      I get called a “essentialist” by some for saying that men are adult males and women are adult females based on hole or pole and not on dress or actions.

      I get labeled anti-transgender for that even when I take the position that all trans prefixed people paint themselves into a corner that doesn’t change the bigots mind with all the psychobabble about gender when we should be demanding freedom and equality instead.

      Good luck with your sex change operation or sex reassignment surgery listen to what your doctor tells you regarding preparation before and care after.

      After you will be female based on the same standards of sexing used for everyone else. the nice thing about that is that you no longer have to validate that femaleness with a million word games about gender because the reality is between your legs.

  2. Véronique Says:

    I understand what you mean by “sex identity,” although I’m not familiar with the term. I have used “gender identity” to mean my sense of being a woman, but I’ve also said that’s based on “brain sex,” so maybe sex identity would be a better term. Maybe the word gender, even gender identity, has been too compromised at this point. And maybe I should reread Whipping Girl (the one trans book that really spoke to me).

    As for Charles/Virginia Prince, I’m already a woman in my day-to-day life and have been for some time. Based on what you wrote above, maybe you’d disagree. Or maybe I’m still unclear on the matter.

    But being female is exactly what I want, and that’s where I’m going. If I could change my karyotype, I probably would, just to shut up the people who think that determines what our sex is.

    Thanks for your wishes on my SRS. I always follow doctor’s orders! I want this to go as well as possible. And yes, I’m looking forward to my sex being unequivocally female. It won’t silence those who claim that once male, always male, but I guess ignorance is always going to exist.

    • Suzan Says:

      Be careful of what you assert today because by the end of the year you may find yourself saying something to the effect of: “I thought I knew before SRS, but now I know the difference between living as a woman and being a woman.”

      As for changing karyotype… The Stanford Clinic I went through had various posters including “War is not healthy for children and other living things.” as well as the Serenity Prayer.”

      I’ve seen too many get carried away with change for the sake of change. I could have as well. Being a left wing hippie who barely wore make up much of the time stopped me.

      People get obsessive about things they can not change and ignore that most women on the planet do not look like super models.

  3. Cathryn Says:

    Amen to that Suzan!

  4. Véronique Says:

    I was only kidding about the karyotype thing!

  5. Véronique Says:

    BTW, Suzan, I really appreciate your insights. After decades of ignorance and fear, I’ve been taking a crash course in transition, and there’s so much that I don’t know.

  6. neitherherenorthere Says:

    You are misusing the terms ‘gender’ (which describes “me” as the subject) and sexuality (which describes “you”, “your gender, which is the one I’m attracted to” as the object). Flaming rhetoric.

    I am straight transgendered (gay man in a woman’s body), so your point is well taken. What I missed was, how do your actions serve to unite people in support of trans? What are you doing to prove to people less informed than you? Does what and how you right serve your purpose? Is your message simply “I should not be labled”? Does your tone and diction support your intended message?

    I’m just curious.

    Thanks for your post.

    • Suzan Says:

      I do not use gender as a euphemism for sex. As I have said in the past gender is about masculinity and femininity. Male and female are about sex.

      I find all the blither about gender to be a boring waste of time and a tool use to continue the oppression of women.

      Gender is about roles. Sex is about having a dick and balls or a pussy between your legs. Not about the clothes you wear and how you act.

    • Suzan Says:

      I’m not really about “uniting people in support of trans”

      I’m about rights and equality as human beings. I do not believe in a Transgender as Umbrella Community.

      I’m no longer trans, I had an operation nearly 40 years ago and it cured me. I can safely say I haven’t want to have a sex change operation since.

  7. Cathryn Says:

    I’m no longer trans, I had an operation nearly 40 years ago and it cured me. I can safely say I haven’t want to have a sex change operation since.

    OK, you really need to warn people about such comments, I snorted coffee all over the keyboard.

    That had to be the single best phrase ever on the TG religion vs treating a birth condition.


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: