Ever since the late 1960s I’ve listened to feminists make the claim that little girls who fail to conform to rigid gender roles are the most oppressed kids around.
The idea that little boys have it all.
While that makes sense as a generalization the making of that generalization requires turning a blind eye to the sissy boys.
As a group sissy boys are assigned male at birth kids who are feminine, either in appearance or mannerism. They may be transkids or feminine gay boys.
For all the 1970s talk about raising strong independent non-gender stereotyped girls few people followed through on the idea that less rigid gender programing could be a two way street.
But let’s forgo even the thought of encouraging the non-gender specific socialization of all boys.
Maybe there is something essentialist about gender or for that matter sexuality.
More than ten years ago Tina and I coined the phrase, “women born transsexual” we did so in the midst of a bunch of arguments about psychiatric theories that perversified transsexuality. We coined as a way of say fuck your sick theories, we were born transsexual. Sort of the way gay people have been saying for a long time (lesbians not so much as many are wedded to the idea of lesbianism as a political statement).
A couple of years ago Lady Gaga wrote an anthem to that very idea. (Born This Way)
Over the last few years I’ve been elated by stories of parents who have allowed their transkids to be their true selves.
I grew up being abused for being an obvious transkid and a sissy. I spent my teen years under the threat of being institutionalized or a throw away kid.
My life was seriously damaged with the abuse I endured as a kid. Even now in old age the scars are still painful.
I think those parents who make a safe place for their transkids, especially their sissy boy are very special people.
Kids assigned male at birth who know inside they are girls have to be very strong just to endure. Too many of us commit suicide as kids because of all the bullying.
Too many of us as adults commit suicide on the installment plan with our substance abuse and self-hating/self-destructive behavior.
Parents who give their sissy boys and transkid girls a safe space to be themselves and who seek out appropriate medical treatment that will allow their transkid girls to grow up as ordinary girls are special indeed.
They don’t buy into the Spartan crap about the value of tough manly boys or beating the girl out of their transkid girls and sissy boys.
Conservatives expect the parents of transkid girls and sissy boys to force them to man up. They expect parents to put these kids in reparative therapy with the likes of Green and Zucker who will repair something that isn’t broken.
You see transkid girls and sissy boys are perfect just as they are.
If we celebrate diversity and freedom then letting transsexual, transgender, gay and lesbian kids grow up to be who they are should be the normal way of thinking.
Protecting them with appropriate medical care and a safe environment to grow and learn in should be the norm.
Articles like My son, the pink boy, which appeared about a year and a half ago shouldn’t be looked upon as something strange.
Nor should a teenage transkids getting sex reassignment surgery merit front page stories on scummy tabloids.
Last night I ran a teaser for The New York Times Magazine story: What’s So Bad About a Boy Who Wants to Wear a Dress?
I read a bunch of the comments and wasn’t the least bit surprised to find many that were hateful and bigoted, condemning parents for offering a place for gender different kids to play and act out things they more commonly have to hide to do.
So many right wing conservatives and radical feminists expect transkids and adults to live lives full of shame and misery.
They look at transkid girls and sissy boys as failed boys not as perfectly normal transkid girls or sissy boys.
We must be perverted because we are different. They can’t wrap their minds around a different kind of normal. One that just is because that’s how some people are born.
An ultra right wing writer employed by the Media Research Center chimed in with the following piece which appears on the right wing News Busters: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/paul-wilson/2012/08/12/ny-times-magazine-asks-what-s-so-bad-about-boy-who-wants-wear-dress
Predictably the author, Paul Wilson, slides in a comment referring to a passage in the Times piece that call his own organization prejudiced.
The one quote that Padawer did cite opposed to this madness was from a Culture and Media Institute article about a transgender-promoting J. Crew ad. The quote was exactly eight words long: “behind the facade of liberal, transgendered identity politics.” Padawer did not even bother to reference the author of the quote, merely citing “one commentator.”
The author, so hell-bent on tolerance, could perhaps have entertained the idea of quoting experts who might object to boys wearing girl’s clothing. But the one thing the proponents of radical redefinitions of gender cannot tolerate is a view contrary to their own.
Wilson employs the now standard ultra right wing ploy of describing anti-bigotry as being the same as bigotry.
Of defining hatred and abuse of transkid girls and sissy boys as normal while claiming treating these kids with decency and humanity is radical.
This is the same bigoted mindset that defines describes equal rights for LGBT/T people as well as for other minority groups as being special rights.
But Paul Wilson is not alone in his dislike of this article, he is joined by a presumed radfem over on Reel Girl: http://margotmagowan.wordpress.com/2012/08/08/gender-fluid-piece-in-nyt-insulting-to-girls-and-women/