Transphobia Is a Goddamn Embarrassment to Us All

From Jezebel:

Lindy West
Jan 14, 2013

In case you missed it, for almost a week now there’s been a jolly olde shitstorme a-brewing between a couple of British feminists and a whole lot of angry trans activists and allies. It started off innocuously enough—it could have begun and ended with a whimper if certain parties hadn’t been such unyielding, bigoted babies (but more on that in a minute). Last Tuesday, journalist Suzanne Moore published an essay about “the power of female anger.” In it, in the service of a mediocre metaphor, she referred rather clumsily (but plausibly with no ill intent) to trans women:

We are angry with ourselves for not being happier, not being loved properly and not having the ideal body shape—that of a Brazilian transsexual.

Now, I think it’s fair to acknowledge that for a lot of non trans people, this reference might not immediately jump out. Moore’s meaning is clear—the modern “ideal woman” is a tall, thin, bronzed, busty impossibility—and, I suppose, the stereotype of a “Brazilian transsexual” conveys that image tidily (though, obviously, ugh). But to anyone even rudimentarily versed in the current social justice dialogue, the statement has some very clear problems:

1) Stop trafficking in shitty stereotypes to make your point. It’s selfish and dehumanizing and gratuitous. Stop. Trans women in Brazil are actual individual human beings—a staggering number of whom are murdered every year just for existing:

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