You’re Fired: Work It Doesn’t Work

From Huffington Post:

Nationally recognized media relations expert and leader within the LGBT community
Posted: 12/19/11

Reposted with permission

After watching the pilot of ABC’s soon-to-air sitcom Work It, I think the first thing they should do is re-title this piece of crap. A better title, with all due deference to another very gay-friendly ABC franchise, may be Desperate Network.

The fact that the production companies behind this show, Bonanza Productions and Summer School Productions, are best known for The Vampire Diaries and science fiction shows, respectively, makes it clear they are not the best fit for this show. These folks should stick with vampires and aliens, which are more believable than any of the idiotic stereotypes and tired, sexist, racist, and transphobic caricatures in this program.

So what the hell was ABC thinking? After seeing the show for myself, the petitions by GLAAD, HRC, and others to get this program pulled make a lot of sense to me. What rubs salt in the wound is that this is ABC, which airs Modern Family and Desperate Housewives and recently included Chaz Bono on the wildly popular Dancing with the Stars, thus boosting the visibility of real transgender people more than we have ever seen on primetime television.

But here’s the issue: as usual, LGBT people (and yes, this show should offend the entire acronym) are only part of a long list of potentially allied minority groups that should be offended by this show. In fact, I would say that we have to get in line to be offended. Women, single parents, people out of work in this time of economic crisis, people of color, and more should all be cringing right now. As my dad used to say, these folks aren’t prejudiced; they make fun of everyone.

Here are some of my thoughts and some food for thought. I’d love to be a fly on the wall when HRC and GLAAD — and hopefully others — meet with ABC, partly because I would love to hear their defense of this, and also because you just know some of the folks involved in this, from creators to actors, are members of the populations who are rightly up in arms.

When you get right down to it, this is really about sexism, which, as I am fond of saying, merely provides the roots from which the flower of homophobia blooms. From that comes the following questions, and my answers. I’d love to hear more from you about your thoughts regarding these questions, which I asked myself as I watched.

Is this a transgender issue?

Yes. Sadly, we have very far to go to educate the public on trans issues. Far too many people still see transgender women as simply “men in dresses,” particularly those who transition later in life and do not “pass.” For them this show is downright dangerous. The recent promo ad depicting the two main characters hiking up their skirts while at urinals plays on the most base fear of the “bathroom issue” that we face constantly in the media, in court, and at the ballot box. ABC is better than this kind of inflammatory and degrading representation of a part of our community that is the target of so much discrimination and violence. Never mind the near-complete lack of protections for trans people in the workplace, a point that we as a community need to focus a lot more energy on, both nationally and locally.

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Daniel Ellsberg: Manning Won’t Get Fair Trial

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Iraq war us soldier throws his medals and stars!!! and quits

I missed this when it first came out last month.

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“Work It”

I haven’t weighed in yet on the new anti-trans hate propaganda “comedy” “Work It” because I was sort of hoping the storm of anger would kill it.

What I want to know is: “Where the fuck is GLAAD or HRC and all the other power national LGBT/T organizations?

I know it’s Christmas time and they have important parties to go to where they will press the flesh with the very important folks in the government while trying to convince them to throw LGBT/T folks a few crumbs.

The entire premise of this “comedy” is so fucked up on so many levels that I hardly know where to start.

First the premise is just as misogynistic now as it was when the Corporate Propaganda err Entertainment Industry foisted Tootsie upon us, with its premise that feminism had made men in the media an endangered species.  This when the reality is that women make up 50% of the people in the world and like men come in all sorts of different shapes, sizes and ages.  Further contrary to movie and TV image land women are pretty much equal to men in intelligence.

We aren’t all bimbos or lawyer/cops/doctors.  Real live people working all sorts of jobs.

Most of us don’t wear dresses to work or for that matter shoes that cost more than a week’s paycheck nor do we live in glamorous Manhattan apartments that in real life run to over a million dollars plus maintenance fees.

Let’s get to the basic premise of this particularly offensive piece of dog shit.

Unpack this in the face of reality.  There is a reason why TS/TG people who easily pass as members of the sex they become tend to keep their mouths shut about it at work.  There is a reason why those who have a harder time with the appearance and who have the money get FFS.

The reason being is that other than a few low paying jobs in the ghettos or continuing employment with companies that have enlightened policies regarding transsexual and transgender folks getting and keeping a job is really difficult.

Harder if you are pre-op and harder still if you are transgender.  Then you wind up having to negotiate things normborns take for granted like where you are going to get to pee.

Lately a lot of TS/TG folks have been putting a tremendous amount of energy into getting Employment Non-Discrimination measures passed on Federal, State and Local levels.

The Christo-Fascists and the ultra right wing are demonizing the idea of TS/TG people in the restroom and changing rooms.  This repulsive “comedy” is advertising itself with two muscularly legged men hoisting their skirts to pee in a urinal.

I can only assume it goes down hill from there.

With TS/TG people either newly in transition or not really passable having something like a 50% unemployment level and who knows what sort of under-employment level this show comes off as vile enough to merit the label of hate speech or hate propaganda.

For this reason I’m asking people to go to the following two sites and sign the petitions:

ABC Do Not Air the Sitcom “Work It”

‘Work It’ makes a mockery of transgender peoples struggles in the work place and empowers those with dormant transphobia to act on those urges with violence.
It reinforces the biased stereotypical misogynistic social constructs that transsexuals are not “real” people and therefore of no worth.

Currently the president of ABC Paul Lee takes no responsibilities for the damaging effects of “Work It” even as he acknowledges the reasons for the public outcry against it. In fact he
laughs at our suffering even though as an intelligent man he undoubtly understands how “Work It” would contribute to transgender discrimination and murders.

Please ad your name to those who ask “Work It” not be aired.

Dallas Transgender Advocates and Allies Thank you!

ABC Work IT UPS The HATE With 1ST “Official” Picture: Men Peeing at urinals in dresses.

Tell ABC today: Programming should not mock transgender people!

ABC has announced that in January they will premiere a new comedy show “Work It,” featuring two men who dress as women to secure employment.

According to ABC, the show centers on two unemployed men who have “learned the hard way that the current recession is more of a ‘man-cession’ and their skills aren’t in high demand.” One finds out that a pharmaceuticals company is hiring sales reps, but only female sales reps. He goes to the interview dressed in heels, a skirt, and make-up and gets hired as a woman.

The premise of “Work It” reinforces false and damaging stereotypes about transgender people.

Send a message to ABC today. Let them know we can’t support programming that belittles and mocks those who do not adhere to society’s gender norms.

Letter to ABC

“Work It” Should Not Reinforce Damaging Stereotypes

Dear ABC,

I’m writing to express my concern about ABC’s upcoming comedy, “Work It,” which features two men dressing as women to secure employment.

Across the country, hundreds of thousands of transgender Americans face very real challenges in the workplace. In 34 states you can be fired for adhering to your gender identity. Many states also lack basic protections for gender identity in hate crime and youth bullying laws.

We have a shared responsibility to ensure the messages about gender identity we send to the public, and particularly youth, are positive ones. It is never appropriate to belittle or mock those who do not adhere to society’s gender norms or the struggles they face.

As an ABC viewer, I urge you not to air a show that reinforces negative and damaging stereotypes about transgender people.

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]

Hate group, NOM, slams Ron Paul for not signing pledge against same-sex equality

From The Orlando Liberal Examiner:

, Orlando Liberal Examiner
December 19, 2011

The fight over civil rights for same-sex couples has been a hot button political issue that has gained steam over the years. Whether it’s fighting for marriage equality or serving openly in the military, the LGBT community is doing whatever t it takes to get fair treatment. One of the leading anti-gay hate groups that is leading the charge against the civil-rights of the LGBT community is the National Organization for Marriage (NOM). NOM’s number one focus has been to stop all same-sex marriage, stop same-sex couples from adopting children and eliminate any rights that could be given to the LGBT community.

Like many other conservative groups, NOM has reached out to the current crop of Republican presidential candidates to sign the groups pledge. The pledge supports a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman as well as preventing same-sex couples from adopting children. Every candidate has signed the pledge except Ron Paul. Whether you agree with Ron Paul or not, there are times when he steps away from the party line and sticks to his ideology. Though Paul does recognize marriage as one man and one woman, he is against a federal amendment to ban same-sex marriage because it would take power away from the states to legislate the issue locally. The president of NOM, Brian Brown, let his voice be heard and he didn’t have kind words for the libertarian Paul.
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Anti-Abortion Extremist Now Attacking Gay-Friendly Churches

From Southern Poverty Law Center:

by Leah Nelson
December 9, 2011

The Rev. Donald Spitz has a message for gay-friendly churches, and the murder-endorsing anti-abortion crusader is not mincing words.

In E-mails sent in recent days to an unknown number of churches listed on, he wrote: “To accept sexual deviancy as normal is a sin. You put your soul in danger of eternal damnation for welcoming unrepentant homosexuals into God’s house. You blaspheme the Name of God. Homosexuality should be criminalized. Homosexuals commit crimes against God, against nature, against the Holy Bible and against the human race.

“Because of your church, I now know why God wrote [in] Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”

There’s good reason to think that Spitz, who routinely describes gay people as child molesters, “sex perverts” and “sodomites,” takes this verse literally. The Chesapeake, Va.-based minister is best known as the man behind the Army of God (AOG) website, which applauds the murderers of physicians, reproductive clinic workers, secretaries and escorts and lashes out against other perceived “enemies” such as the LGBT community.

Spitz is a signatory to the so-called “Defensive Action Statement,” which describes the murder of doctors who provide abortion as “justifiable,” a “godly action.” The AOG site celebrates as “heroes of the faith” the violent criminals who, saying they were called to their work directly by God, have carried out such actions. (There is no evidence to suggest that AOG is a formally structured group, rather than simply a concept, though many such criminals describe themselves as “members.”)

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Occupy Group Faults Church, a Onetime Ally

From The New York Times:

Published: December 16, 2011

For months, they were the best of neighbors: the slapdash champions of economic equality, putting down stakes in an outdoor plaza, and the venerable Episcopal parish next door, whose munificence helped sustain the growing protest.

But in the weeks since Occupy Wall Street was evicted from Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan, relations between the demonstrators and Trinity Wall Street, a church barely one block from the New York Stock Exchange, have reached a crossroads.

The displaced occupiers had asked the church, one of the city’s largest landholders, to hand over a gravel lot, near Canal Street and Avenue of the Americas, for use as an alternate campsite and organizing hub. The church declined, calling the proposed encampment “wrong, unsafe, unhealthy and potentially injurious.”

And now the Occupy movement, after weeks of targeting big banks and large corporations, has chosen Trinity, one of the nation’s most prominent Episcopal parishes, as its latest antagonist.

“We need more; you have more,” one protester, Amin Husain, 36, told a Trinity official on Thursday, during an impromptu sidewalk exchange between clergy members and demonstrators. “We are coming to you for sanctuary.”

Trinity’s rector, the Rev. James H. Cooper, defended the church’s record of support for the protesters, including not only expressions of sympathy, but also meeting spaces, resting areas, pastoral services, electricity, bathrooms, even blankets and hot chocolate. But he said the church’s lot — called Duarte Square — was not an appropriate site for the protesters, noting that “there are no basic elements to sustain an encampment.”

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