I’m an old hippie woman. A long gray haired jean and t-shirt wearing hippie old woman. I don’t wear or own high heels. I wear Birkenstocks.
I think make-up and Photoshop are for plastic people. Vogue on the outside and vague or vacuous on the inside.
I recently read Julia Serano’s latest book, “Excluded” and didn’t much relate to it. It was like she was writing from another planet, one where arguing with people who are the products of Doctoral programs in Gender Studies/Feminist Studies is important. One where participating in Lesbian Events like the MWMF is important.
I started transition forty-five years ago next month, had SRS some three years later. Been there, done that. I can actually remember some of the details. It wasn’t as traumatic as it seems for many.
Every year we have the Transgender Day of Remembrance. Every year a depressingly long list of murder victims is read and every year I point out how most were at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder doing the most dangerous form of sex work. Every year I hear privileged white TS/TG folks claim how ENDA would mean these sisters didn’t have to do sex work. Every year I think about how the privileged have no idea how harsh life is for the poor, even those who make it to the concrete floors of the big box stores.
Today Huffington Post had a headline “Transgender Pageant Queen Scores Elle Spread”. I wondered, “Why is this important?” Why do TS/TG women need to be reduced to shallow vacuous beauty queens, sex objects, models and glamor obsessed gender stereotypes?
I actually modeled and did some extra work in the mid 1970s. The extra work was a hell of a lot more fun because I got to see how they make movies as well as rub elbows with some actual movie stars.
But modeling… What a depressing game. Sort of like peddling crap and about as much fun as working in any sales job. Scratch that last one. Working selling at swap meets is a hell of a lot more fun.
I’m over the idea that just because a TS/TG person is in a movie/TV show, writes a book or is a musician means I should buy their product and never look at it critically. We went past that level of critical mass years ago.
Lately a couple of archives have asked me for my books and papers. None have offered me any money. It is as though they don’t recognize how poor many of us who were pioneers are.
I remember a time when activism wasn’t something someone did for a living.
Everyday now, especially during the Holiday season I get begging letters from all sorts of worthy causes staffed with bright eyed eager young college grads, folks with degrees and student loans expecting to make a career out of activism.
Some times even looking for trans-specific articles to post to this blog leaves me feeling totally burnt out.
Like Howard Beale in the movie “Network” I want to scream at people and wake them up.
You aren’t special because you are transsexual/transgender. Yeah you have some stuff to deal with most people don’t have to deal with but mainly you are affected by the same crap that affects everyone else.
So even though the articles I post teasers to are not specifically “Trans*” they are still relevant to my life and yours too.
There is a lot of backlash brewing and people are going to need to fight bathroom initiatives and the like, but for the next few days celebrate the holidays.
Avail yourself of the Affordable Care Act, if you can. It may be more inclusive than you know, and folks may need to fight to keep it that way.