Don’t Include Me in this Imaginary Trans-Community: “We’re not duped: Palestine is an important issue for transgender communities”

Fuck you, with your antisemitic hate Israel and the Jews campaigns.  Anti-Zionism is coded language for Jew Hating.

The BDS Movement is Jew hating in action.

The attacking people who work for Isaraeli companies and universities is the same sort of behavior the ultra right wing uses for attacking people who support the rights of LGBT people.

Why am I supposed to support the Palestinians?  Seriously.  It seems as though they have had nearly 70 years to make peace with the Israelis.  Over those years Israel has had to defend itself from numerous Arab Nations attempting to wipe it out.

They were forced to wage a war on terror for nearly 50 years, prior to the 9/11 attack upon the USA in 2001.  If the people of the US had lost a proportionate number of people to suicide bombing that Israel has lost, the numbers would be in the tens of thousands and we too would be in a constant state of war.

Count me out of this campaign of ill disguised antisemitism.

From DePaulia:  http://www.depauliaonline.com/opinions/we-re-not-duped-palestine-is-an-important-issue-for-transgender-communities-1.3164663#.U16dFXfNuUl

By Aiden Bettine
Sunday, April 27, 2014

Editor’s note: This is in response to the recent op-ed “Israel Divestment campaign poses threat to peace, cooperation,” and concerns the overarching debate over student proposals for divestment from Israel.

The Israeli military occupation of Palestine is an important issue for trans* communities (editor’s note: the asterisk stands for inclusivity and refers to all identities in the gender spectrum that do not adhere to the gender binary). We as members of Trans*(formation) DePaul are proud to be a part of DePaul Divest, a student coalition calling for our university to divest from companies that profit from human rights violations committed by the Israeli government.

We see our struggles as transgender people as connected to the struggles of Palestinians. When we compare the experiences of Palestinians living under military occupation and the experiences of transgender communities in the United States, we see striking similarities: policing and mass incarceration, denial of access to healthcare, harmful stereotypes, media images that depict us as violent and unstable, and legacies of colonialism. Our communities are suffering at the hands of the same systems — and even the same companies.

Some of the companies that DePaul Divest is targeting also profit off of the oppression of transgender people. For example, DePaul is invested in Hewlett Packard. In Palestine, HP provides technology for checkpoints and surveillance systems and computer technology used by the Israeli military. HP products are also used in prisons and detention centers where Israel detains African migrants. Here in the United States, HP provides database technology used in prisons. Trans people — especially trans women of color — are disproportionately incarcerated. Therefore, HP profits from our oppression too.

We resent attempts to enlist our community in supporting the Israeli government. Since the early 2000s, the Israeli government has spent thousands of dollars targeting U.S. LGBTQ communities. Activists call this PR strategy “pinkwashing.” Through pride floats, film festivals, tours and advertising campaigns, the Israeli government has tried to persuade us that Israel is a gay- friendly country. But it’s obvious why the Israeli government wants to sell us its gay rights record. As Palestinian Queers for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) writes, “It’s not about gay rights … Pinkwashing aims to disparage Israel’s neighbors in order to justify the country’s existence as necessary by any means, relying on the image of a lone democracy barely surviving surrounded by violent, intolerant, women- hating and backward societies.”

Continue reading at:  http://www.depauliaonline.com/opinions/we-re-not-duped-palestine-is-an-important-issue-for-transgender-communities-1.3164663#.U16dFXfNuUl

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Sad, Sad, Sad: Transgender women reflect on a lifetime of change

I never lived in the Tenderloin of San Francisco although I spent some 18 months or so working as a cashier at a porno theater there and co-running the NTCU.

I lived in Berkeley in a hippie/radical commune when I came out and started hormones, lived in Berkeley until I was over and done with SRS, electrolysis, dental work etc.

Then I moved to Los Angeles to start over.  Most of my friends from the Stanford Program did something similar.

No one told us to do so.  Most of us didn’t much care for the Bay Area.  When I visited LA in 1973 I fell in love with the place.  When I was “California Dreamin'” as a kid I imagined warm and sunny not perpetually damp with icy wind.

Further I didn’t get SRS to spend my life in the trans-ghetto.

Hippie/leftie had more impact on making me who I was than being transsexual.

My circle of friends always included non-trans-folk as well as trans-folk.  My fondness for suburbia is a product of my old age, however I never much cared for living in the same apartment building as a bunch of other trans-folks.

Too much drama, too much spiteful bullshit.  Better to have friends scattered around the city.

This is why I think it is sad when trans-folks who were my contemoraries are still stuck in San Francisco, never mind the Tenderloin, that fast disappearing collection of near tenement apartments and scary sleazy bars, and whore strolls.

Even before I came out sisters looked at getting out of the ghetto as a major step in getting their lives together.

From The Bay Area Reporter:  http://www.ebar.com/news/article.php?sec=news&article=69664

by Matthew S. Bajko
April 24, 2014

In June longtime transgender activist Felicia Elizondo will celebrate turning 68. Yet she still finds it hard to believe she has reached her senior years.

She also marvels at having lived long enough to see the enormous strides made by the transgender community since she and other trans people stood up against police harassment late one night in 1966 at the now defunct Compton’s Cafeteria in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district.

“I didn’t think I would live this long to see the changes that have happened over the last 50 years,” said Elizondo, who is also known as Felicia Flames.

In March, Elizondo joined two other transgender women in their 60s on a panel hosted by the GLBT Historical Society to reflect on their lives and the changes they have witnessed.

At 14, Elizondo moved from Stockton to San Jose with a gay man she had met. By 16 she was spending weekends in the Tenderloin, considered back then the “gay mecca” of San Francisco, she said.

“Growing up we were called trash and gutter girls,” she said. “We didn’t matter to the community.”

Elizondo joined the Navy and volunteered to go to Vietnam, because “I didn’t want to be gay,” she recalled. “I thought maybe I would be killed and all this will be over. If the military doesn’t make me a man, nothing will. And it didn’t.”

In 1974 she transitioned while working as a long distance operator for Pacific Telephone.

“Transgender women could not be in the closet. We had to be out and proud,” said Elizondo. “Gay men and lesbians could be in the closet, go to work and make their money.”

Five decades ago “was a bad era. We couldn’t get jobs. We couldn’t get housing,” recalled San Francisco native Tamara Ching, 64, a transgender woman who also took part in the panel. “In the 1960s we could not walk around in anything other than our birth gender. The police were mean and would disperse you.”

Many of the transwomen Ching knew back then in the Tenderloin turned to prostitution to make a living. They rode the “merry-go-round,” she said, a circular path along O’Farrell and Ellis between Leavenworth and Jones they continuously walked in an attempt to avoid being stopped by the police.

“We whored, whored, whored,” said Ching. “Sex work empowered me.”

While she suffers from diabetes and hepatitis C, Ching remains HIV-negative despite having never used a condom with the “3,500 tricks” she estimates she was paid to sleep with.

“I expected to have HIV and AIDS like all my sisters,” she said.

Continue reading at:  http://www.ebar.com/news/article.php?sec=news&article=69664

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