Friday, August 13, 2010

DON CHARLES: PULLING DOWN THE PANTIES OF SEX AND GENDER OPPRESSION: MY TRANSGENDER IDENTITY MANIFESTO

I received the following comment castigating my post regarding my firm belief in the God-given normality of Transgender people! The title of my post was Transgender People Are Not "Mistakes. I urge you to read that post and the ensuing comments.

A commentator, radicalbitch, wrote the following in response to that post:

Frankly, Jerry and Don are idiots.

I'm beyond fed up with gay men and crossdressers pontificating about things they have absolutely no knowledge about..it's same patriarchal bullcrap that arrogant men always engage in.

If you lack all knowledge of actual, transsexed people who are BORN neurologically intersexed and REQIURE maximum body correction to bring mind and body into congruence then STFU.

I was born a hermaphrodite, Pope Ratzie says I was born an abomination, a violation of god's will. Good thing I'm not and never have been a christian and know better. No, was I not born a mistake but rather a special daughter of the Magna Mater. You, on the other hand, can stay the hell out of my identities, my life and cease and desist spreading misinformation and out and out freakin lies about women such as myself.

Crossdressers suffer a mental disorder, people born transsexed have a neurological intersexed condition, a medical condition. The treatment for that condition reaches close to 100% cure and that is surgical and hormonal correction. It is not an option, it is not a choice and the medical condition has absolutely nothing in common with the mental disease of transvestism which is what Don has.


The following was my response to her:

Hi radicalbitch: Why you resent it when I say that transgender people are not mistakes is a mystery to me. Moreover, you assume that I am gay, which I'm not; you assume that Don is a transvestite, which he's not. You are wrong on these counts, as you are wrong on the other issues you mention, such as I don't doubt that you are a woman. Moreover, being a hermaphrodite is one thing; being transgender is usually quite another, as the latter deals with gender expression regardless of genitalia. Although I'm not a particular fan of Ratzinger, even he doesn't say that you were "born an abomination, a violation of God's will." I do understand your anger, but it seems to me to be misplaced. Best wishes, Jerry.

Don Charles beautifully addressed the likely motivations and nature of this comment, and with his kind permission I am posting his insights here:

When did you or I ever write about intersex people, Jerry? When did we discuss individuals born with indeterminate genitalia (the rare condition incorrectly identified as "hermaphroditism")? We explored transsexual identity in our essays. We talked about the normalcy of having gender identity and biological gender that don't match. If you have intersex genitalia, there's at least a partial match! When I refer to transsexual anatomy, I mean men with vaginas and women with penises, not people with combined male and female sex organs. Most transsexual folk do not have indeterminate genitalia! Most intersex folk do not have a gender identity conflict! Those are two different states of being, and we didn't confuse them. "Radicalb*tch" does confuse them, and she's probably doing it deliberately so she can justify attacking you. If she's having some kind of functional problem with her intersex genitalia, that's completely unrelated to our discussions of gender identity. Don't get drawn into an argument about a subject you never even addressed!

It's an old debate trick, for an adversary to lure you into discussions of an irrelevant topic you're not well versed in, and try to make you look stupid. I don't know much about intersex people and their issues, but I do know that many of them resent having their genitals "corrected" during infancy. That practice, which was widespread until very recently, resulted in children being raised as girls when they actually were boys, and vice-versa. In other words, there's usually no dire health concern that justifies surgically altering intersex genitalia. I would argue that such surgery is an option open the intersex adult, just like it's an option for the transsexual adult. However, I don't presume to advocate for intersex folk, and I'm not going to be sidetracked.

I'm going to post this Manifesto on my blog sidebar today:

PULLING DOWN THE PANTIES OF SEX AND GENDER OPPRESSION: MY TRANSGENDER IDENTITY MANIFESTO


I refuse to perpetuate the ABSURD FICTION that human gender is only binary. Transgender status is real! I refuse to perpetuate the BLASPHEMOUS LIE that human beings are "born into the wrong body". There are no wrong bodies. I refuse to PATHOLOGIZE transsexual anatomy. It is not a deformity. I refuse to validate the PREPOSTEROUS IDEA of people having "the wrong genitals." There is no wrong genitalia. I reject the BOGUS NOTION of "gender reassignment." When God blends male with female, human beings cannot separate the two. I reject the BASELESS NOTION that human gender should ever need be "transitioned" into. Gender need only be acknowledged. I reject the IGNORANT BELIEF that female and male gender cannot co-exist in one body. They can, and they do. I reject the BIGOTRY that condemns female and male gender existing in the same body. How dare mortals condemn what God has made? I denounce the use of TRANSPHOBIC slurs like "gender queer". Verbal genocide is just as lethal as the physical kind. I decry the PITIABLE VICTIM MENTALITY which encourages transfolk to pathologize themselves. A gift must not be mistaken for a curse.

I believe that transgender life is both NATURAL and NECESSARY. I believe transgender status is the raison d'etre of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual identity. It is NOT a disorder. It must NEVER be classified as such! People of blended gender are not to be DEMONIZED, DENIGRATED or PITIED. Those who promote a transgender victim mentality will find in me a DOGGED adversary! I shall CHASTISE them for encouraging transfolk to feel deformed and inferior. I shall CHALLENGE them to embrace the normalcy of blended gender. If they persist in peddling TRANSSEXUAL VICTIMHOOD, I shall EXPOSE them as the messengers of ignorance that they are.
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2 comments:

DON CHARLES aka "STUFFED ANIMAL" said...

Jerry,

People may be shocked by my "panties pulled down" imagery, but I didn't use it for shock value. It's a double metaphor. First, it signifies divesting oneself of oppressive trappings, like some early feminists divested themselves of girdles and bras. Second, it signifies exposing the butt-ugly animus of the oppressor (hence, a bared butt, tastefully photographed).

It seems that a lot of people, Transgender and otherwise, prefer not to deal with the tremendous amount of transphobia found in the world. They find it easier to buy into the freakdom that the world imposes on Transfolk, to pathologize transgender bodies, and to perpetuate the myth of binary gender that their existence nullifies. Years ago, my Black history teachers showed me how wrong society can be about a minority group; when that happens, it's necessary for an oppressed people to reject the inaccuracies.

Jesus Christ put it a different way: He said "if your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into Hell"(Matthew 5:29). Internalized shame is the eye that must be gouged out! Internalized shame, absorbed from the invalidating messages of an ignorant society, makes misguided people see themselves as deformed and lash out against those who reveal the truth of their wholeness.

Their lashing out will never, ever stop me from uncovering the shameful nakedness of sex and gender bigotry. I know I won't be able to get through to all or even most of those Transfolk who bought what the victimhood merchants sold to them; but as I've written before, it doesn't take a whole matchbook to start a fire!

Jerry Maneker said...

An excellent comment, Don Charles! "Their lashing out will never, ever stop me from uncovering the shameful nakedness of sex and gender bigotry." It won't stop me either, Don Charles! Best wishes, Jerry.