you're reading...
Women's Bodies

The Colonizing of Lesbian and Women’s Community: Bitch Performance at Boston Dyke March Canceled by Transgender Activists

Support Bitch! 

The Boston Dyke March  —  note, this is the DYKE March, the herstoric march lesbians created, organized, sponsored, and have proudly celebrated since 1993 — has canceled the performance of Bitch, a lesbian feminist musician and performer, because Bitch performs at the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival.

A poll posted yesterday at Bay Windows  out of Provincetown asked this:

Was it appropriate for the Boston Dyke March, which says it is “committed to being proactively trans-inclusive,” to book the performer Bitch, who supports the anti-trans policy of The Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival?

Results as of this morning are as follows:

Yes. 42  (37.84%)
No. 50  (45.05%)
Don’t be so reductive. 19  (17.12%)

Comments  are as follows:

  • It is a dyke march, she is a dyke.
    07/06/2007
  • The “policy” is pro-womyn. It is NOT anti-trans. Get yer facts straight before you promote more hatred upon women who have experienced a lifetime of discrimination unique to themselves. It’s okay for trans folks to have exclusive gatherings, it’s okay for people of color, etc. and it’s okay for female-born women as well.
    07/06/2007
  • MWMF and Boston Dyke March are not even close to the same thing.
    07/06/2007
  • It’s a DYKE march, not a trans march
    07/06/2007
  • Being proactively trans-inclusive means doing actual work to support all trans people. Sometimes this means doing research about the people you are asking to speak for you or are paying. I do not believe you can both support trans people and give money to people who want to keep them away. Supporting trans men and genderqueers is not the same thing as supporting all trans people.
    07/06/2007
  • There is no such thing as a trans-positive dyke march if the committee chooses an openly, proudly, transphobic woman to perform. Some queer women happen to be trans, and a dyke march that doesn’t support all queer women is a farce at best, a travesty at worst.
    07/06/2007
  • I can’t believe this is a controversy
    07/06/2007
  • what kind of a stupid poll is this?
    07/06/2007
  • Michigan’s policy is not “anti trans” it is simply a statement that the festival is for womyn-born-womyn. This question is therefore biased.
    07/06/2007
  • Your disrespect of our festival is shown by the incorrect spelling of fest’s title. Since when does pro WBW equal anti-trans?
    07/06/2007
  • Just because she beleives in MWMF right to support WBW policy doesn’t mean she is anti Trans. Give us a break, and find something new to complain about.
    07/06/2007
  • The Dyke March is a lesbian event, as is Michfest. It ought to be respected as such.
    07/06/2007 
  •  support the right of any group to gather and celebrate their own particular lives and experiences. It doesn’t take anything away from anyone not within that group. Everyone has special events especially aimed at their particular group or identity, so what’s the problem?
    07/06/2007
  • Bitch is an awesome performer, is woman-positive and trans-supportive, and her inclusion in any dyke event is totally appropriate.
    07/06/2007
  • How re-dick-u-l-us. Really, so the next step would be that anyone who doesn’t think that transgendered persons should be required to age admitted to Mich and that this act should trump women’s choice to have a women’s only space. This stinks of male priviledge! We’ve been having public discourse for years about women’s rights…to equal pay, decisions about her body, and in the case of Mich the right to gather together and have a party. This protest is so rooted in hatred of women and a complete failure to RESPECT women’s right to autonomy. Good luck and peace. Please consider allowing the space to consider that women might have the right to self determination??
    07/06/2007
  • Huh?
    08/06/2007

Despite not having anywhere near a majority vote, transgender have activists CANCELED Bitch’s performance as of this morning.

The Dyke March itself is inclusive.  Bitch’s performance was canceled strictly because she is willing to perform at the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival.  She is very willing, in other words, to perform at all sorts of events.  But transgender activists are willing to cause her material harm if she performs at events they disapprove.

This is the latest in a long string of attacks on lesbian musicians, activists, artists and leaders by transgender organizations to include:

  • The closing down of a lesbian resource center in Vancouver because it was for women only;
  • A lawsuit which tied up a grassroots, private, privately-funded rape crisis center for over a decade, brought by a person who was white, affluent, and lived as a male professional for many years before obtaining “sex change” surgery.   The rape crisis center would not allow the MTF in question to serve as a volunteer counselor on its crisis hotline but offered other positions instead.  The cost to the rape crisis center over a decade of litigation was hundreds of thousands of dollars before the Canadian Supreme Court ruled in favor of the crisis center.  Note, this was a privately-run, lesbian-owned center which did not receive government funding.  Consider how many rape victims might have been helped with the money spent to defend this lawsuit.
  • A showing of the film, The Gendercator, in San Francisco, by a brilliant lesbian filmmaker, Catherine Crouch, was torpedoed by transgender activists, most of whom had never seen the film but who just didn’t like the description.
  • Transgender activists also attempted to torpedo the showing of the film in New York.
  • Many, many lesbian musicians and performers have been boycotted by progressive and liberal people, so-called, on the word of transgender activists because they perform at Michfest.  Progressive and feminist lesbian musicians and performers are very much a marginalized, disenfranchised group.  Does anybody think they are going to be invited to perform in major het venues anytime soon?

Given that this is the treatment lesbians receive at the hands of male-born persons who do not get their way, consider the outcome were they to get their way. 

The next thing that we’ll hear is that as women, before we ask a woman to perform for, or speak to us, we will need to submit a bio and an outline of her political views and activism to local transgender activists for their approval, otherwise we will be boycotted, attacked, harrassed, and lied about.

I sued the Religious Right for this kind of behavior 13 years ago. 

And I won.

This is colonizing behavior.  It is cultural imperialism.   The members of a community themselves, when we are talking about a marginalized, oppressed, people group, as lesbians are, as women are, have a right to autonomy, self-definition and the defining of our own in-group/out-group boundaries.

It was wrong for Bitch’s performance to be canceled.  It was wrong for the showing of the Gendercator to be canceled.  It was wrong that Vancouver Rape Relief , which has been serving raped and battered women for over 30 years, was sued.  It is wrong that lesbian and women performers and speakers are harrassed, attacked, lied about and boycotted when they play at lesbian-owned, lesbian-run, woman-only events, because they dare to play at Michfest.

Please, watch this video of Bitch singing my favorite song on her new CD, “Make This, Break This,” it is a song that makes me cry every time I hear it, and it is this kind of performance that, if transgender activists have their way, women will not be able to see.

You can show your support for Bitch by buying her latest album. below.  It’s just $12.

Note:  Comments will be seriously moderated and are restricted to women only (even though I know there are good male allies who comment here. I know they will understand and be supportive).   If you are not a member of the lesbian community, in particular, please take care to post respectfully, as respectfully as you would, as a feminist and progressive, in any discussion involving a marginalized community of which you were not a member.

Heart

Discussion

175 thoughts on “The Colonizing of Lesbian and Women’s Community: Bitch Performance at Boston Dyke March Canceled by Transgender Activists

  1. REINSTATE BITCH’S PERFORMANCE.

    Really, are transgender activists now the bosses of Dykes? Women (the female ones) seem to have come full circle from being male dominated to being their own bosses to being male dominated again.

    That was a great clip of Bitch. I wonder if you could show The Gendercator too?

    Posted by Branjor | June 8, 2007, 7:50 pm
  2. Heart,

    I’ve been watching this march towards triumph of males within the “lesbian” community for decades.

    It’s clear to me now that they’ve won.

    Where is there any publicly known or publicly accessible lesbian space any more, which is not trans, i.e. male, controlled?

    I suspect that MichFest has been able to withstand that huge anti-female pressure only because they provide a time-limited male-free vacation space for het women who are entitled (by heteropatriarchal privilege) to a “girls’ night out”.

    And *of course* Michfest is a lesbian festival. But the minute that it announces or names itself as such, it will implode.

    Bitterness.

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 8, 2007, 7:58 pm
  3. Hm. I should be writing an academic paper at this moment and not musing. But. In postmodernity, “mixed” identities (and I do mean identities) are king and queen. Hip and transgressive. Placing these on a pedestal them at the expense of all other experience is conventional and therefore safe.

    Posted by profacero | June 8, 2007, 8:11 pm
  4. Do you know of any male born male only or predominately male born male only spaces that transsexuals have actively focused on to infiltrate/invade? Or do the transsexuals tend to only focus their efforts on invading female born female spaces?

    Interesting.

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 8, 2007, 8:17 pm
  5. transsexuals seem to be focused on cultural gender roles and “feeling” like a woman;gender roles and standards which are particularly harmful to women and that a lot of the time are not embraced by feminists, especially not radical feminists. I’m sorry but in my Dworkinized opinion they are still very much men enthralled with the -male- idea of what it means to be a woman and what they -think- they would want to do/can do/can express as a woman. So they fight to be women. I think it is horrible that this band was denied a performance because they happen to play at all feminist/lesbian gatherings.

    Posted by Kiuku | June 8, 2007, 10:05 pm
  6. So good to get this support. I am hoping Bitch will see this.

    Really interesting what you’ve said there, Mary Sunshine.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 8, 2007, 10:16 pm
  7. This feels like women are being squashed into an even smaller box.

    And Kitty’s comment is telling….

    Posted by witchy-woo | June 8, 2007, 11:40 pm
  8. Not a lesbian or trans woman, but I just wanted to say that this makes me really angry.
    re: invading men’s spaces – I think the whole world (under patriarchy that is) is a men’s space … which is why it’s so important to protect the women’s spaces that we’ve got.
    Putting aside my thoughts on the trans issue (which are pretty complicated), I don’t think that having women-born-women space= transphobic or anti-trans. If women are saying hateful things about trans people, like “you’re a lot of men in dresses”, or opposing civil rights for trans people, then that is transphobic. For example I’m Asian-American and if Asian immigrants in the US wanted an “Asian immigrant” space, I wouldn’t automatically think that they are bigots or denying that I’m Asian for not inviting me.
    I do think it’s important for traditionally oppressed groups of people to be able to define themselves on their own terms, though.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 9, 2007, 12:41 am
  9. Totally just ordered the cd.

    I sometimes wonder why the trans-activist movement has been co-opted so much to these ends. I mean, there are great groups out there working to end the medical establishment’s violence toward transwomen, to end the exploitation of trans youth in pornstitution, to provide safe spaces for gender non-conforming kids whose parents abuse them and/or throw them out. These are amazing, righteous movements that I, as a radical feminist, am proud to be allied with.

    These anti-MichFest witch hunts are not. The work of some people (trans and non-trans) to silence the lesbian voices of MichFest under the guise of being “pro-trans” is a double-edged sword. It creates enemies where there are none, but also it exacerbates the divide between people who can do great work together, despite disagreements over what constitutes being a woman.

    Posted by Amber | June 9, 2007, 1:54 am
  10. Heart,

    I really admire your commitment to feminism in so many ways, but I just have to express some disagreement here. I know that Michfest is very special and important to you and many other women, and it must be really frustrating to feel like it is under attack. But I feel like you are overgeneralizing a lot here. In my experience most transgendered folks are just trying to be happy, like we all are. I understand that your experiences have been different. Every group has its bad apples. I’m not weighing in on any specific issue or controversy, because I don’t have enough information to reasonably do so. I’d just ask everyone to remember to treat people as individuals.

    Posted by Ann Bartow | June 9, 2007, 3:13 am
  11. Ann,

    It’s not that any of us feels like Michfest, or womyn’s spaces, or lesbian spaces are under attack– they really are under attack. In all the ways I’ve listed and many I haven’t listed. They’ve been under attack for a long time.

    Every Michfest woman I know — including me — treats transgendered persons as individuals, both online and in real life. Every Michfest woman I know, and every lesbian I know, at least in real life, is unfailingly accepting and supportive of her transgender friends and allies.

    However, in this instance, and in many instances in the past, transgendered people have directly and materially and intentionally damaged lesbians, damaged women, in the same way Bitch has been damaged here, just as Catherine Crouch has been damaged via the torpedoing of the showing of the Gendercator, just as VRR and other lesbian organizations have been damaged.

    When transgendered persons sue lesbian organizations and boycott lesbian performers, who are inclusive, who are their allies, because they simply perform at Michfest, they are certainly not treating lesbians, or women, as “individuals.” We have become the easy stand-in for for the real enemy, white male heterosupremacy. We are the easy, easy, easiest of targets, because we have little power and even less money.

    Why do they not target the real enemies, as the Soul Force activists I blogged about recently are doing? There is where the power is, the money is, in places like fundamentalist churches. There is where the hatred is, in fundamentalist churches. The Soul Force folks, lesbians, gay men, and transgendered people have my complete and total 100 percent support. The work they are doing will make, and has made, a difference for all human beings, and they are putting themselves on the line to do that work in the most admirable of ways.

    This bullshit here? This canceling of Bitch’s performance? In my view it is absolutely inexcusable and abhorrent.

    I am an ally to transgendered persons all the way up until they directly, intentionally, materially harm my lesbian sisters, as here, or any woman. ANY woman.

    And of course — of course; there are going to be overgeneralizations in blog posts. We cannot be comprehensive here. I just wish there would be the same level of concern, on just about anyone’s part, over the ongoing, not overgeneralizations, but LIES, outright LIES, malicious harrassment, of radical feminists and lesbian womyn, regurgitated out there on the blogosphere, by self-identified feminists, you know? Instead of pretending it isn’t happening while holding radical feminists at arm’s length, this distancing, “I don’t agree with her, but…”, when, in fact, we — radical feminists — are the ones who are willing to put ourselves out there, and take the hits, and take the bullshit for saying what nobody else has the goddamn courage to say or even entertain because it’s going to cost her a bit, maybe make somebody mad, open her to criticism, whatever, hell, get her threatened, get her children threatened, get her harrassed all the way offline, as I have nearly been, as some radical feminists have been. It is much easier to play it safe and stick to issues everybody can rally around and for which you will get a huge buttload of props and kudos. I mean, what. What is there to respect because someone opposes rape? Or domestic violence. Fundamentalists and right-wingers and Republicans and conservatives do that all of the time. What is there to respect when someone devotes herself to all the various liberal causes the entire liberal world can get behind, and for which everybody will give her hella “atta girls,” “you rock,” “you are just such a good girl,” while sitting silently by as those same liberals either ignore lesbian and women’s issues or put them at the very end of the list.

    I mean, defend lesbians? lesbian separatists? Radical feminist lesbian separatists? Women, just in general? Against this tiny thing of, say, “progressives” suing us? Canceling our performances at our own events? Violating our boundaries, our spaces, and us as individuals?

    Hell no. They’re just lesbians. They’re just radfems. They’re too radical for me. I want to have some friends at the end of the day. Who cares if a lesbian musician or a radical feminist can’t find a venue. Who cares if she can’t get her film shown. Who cares if her organization is closed down. Who cares if she can’t get published, doesn’t get invited to speak. Who cares if women are raped and there are no funds at the local rape relief center because the funds are all going to pay legal fees to somebody who got her goddamn feelings hurt.
    It’s fucking *enough,* Ann.

    I respect you, too, and I am sure we will continue to be friends and allies as feminist women. But out of my own integrity and commitment to women, I am going to say loud and clear, this is bullshit, this right here. If that loses me friends, then it does. I don’t care about that. I care about being respected for my integrity and my ongoing commitment to women, not for how nice I am, neither my willingness to make nice nor to stay silent when a woman is being harmed. If I’ve got to sell out my sisters to keep my friends, then they aren’t my friends.

    Because no person is your friend who demands your silence.

    You know?

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 3:41 am
  12. And you know, there is someone I am treating as an individual right this moment. That someone is Bitch.

    If this were done to you, what would you want to see happen? Would you want to read your friends writing platitudes about treating everybody — but you, presumably — as an individual? Would you want everybody being really quiet and saying, well, there are a few bad apples, but we have to treat everyone as individuals.

    While ignoring the fact that you, an individual, just got your performance canceled?

    Or would you hope that those who actually cared about you would treat you as an individual and challenge those who have sought to harm you?

    Feminism is about each woman’s voice, and making sure each woman’s voice is heard. HEARD. Not silenced. Not shouted down. Not made to be not quite as important as all of those many faceless individuals out there. Not muffled because, say, she is an embarrassment somehow and might cause me diplomatic difficulties.

    Bitch is an individual. She has been hurt.

    I am hear to say so.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 4:14 am
  13. Maybe most transgendered folks are just trying to be happy without interfering with anyone else, but if that were so, why is it these bad apples seem to have so much influence in the transgender community? Are they just so skillful at making noise that the Boston Dyke March and Frameline in San Francisco feel they must pay more attention to that noise than to the interests of lesbians? If they are a small minority within the transgender community, why would anyone pay attention to their noise? Why would the larger transgender community not be up in arms about all this, to repudiate their bad apples?

    Posted by Aletha | June 9, 2007, 6:08 am
  14. Oh Heart, you have no idea how much I love your passionate writing. You say all the things that I think and feel but only so much better.

    “Because no person is your friend who demands your silence.”

    So, so true.

    At the moment in Australia we have a gay bar that wants to kick all heterosexuals and women (including lesbians) out. And another trans mtf is suing some lesbian feminists for not allowing them to come to one of their events.

    I agree that this is male privilege in a different form. Hopefully as the transactivists get more extreme, more women will begin to see how important it is to stay strong and committed to women-only spaces.

    Posted by allecto | June 9, 2007, 7:22 am
  15. …most transgendered folks are just trying to be happy, like we all are.

    Oh no! We wouldn’t want to make the chaps unhappy by not granting them their divine male-born right to rule over and dictate to the female-born. Oh, the sheer blasphemy of it all! What could we be thinking? Did we forget that the female-born were put on this earth to serve the male-born? And be their genie in a bottle and grant them their every wish, want and desire? Now stop being so mean and bigotted, women, and get in your place and assume the subservient roles the male-born have defined for us. Or boo hoo, they’ll be unhappy. 😦

    Posted by luckynkl | June 9, 2007, 9:33 am
  16. Lucky, that’s not what Ann Bartow was saying AT ALL. And when we start putting reactionary words in each other’s mouths, it just fuels the flames of the fire that anti-MichFest people started.

    There are a lot of transwomen who don’t give two shits about what womyn do at MichFest. They’re busy living their lives, yes – trying to be happy, many of them working on issues that I think every one of us could get behind. This is why I too have an issue with huge generalized statements about what transwomen are doing to MichFest, because you know what? A LOT of the people involved in fighting MichFest are NOT trans! They’re anti-womenspace, anti-lesbian, anti-womyn people. They’re defining the movement as “pro-trans” much as the anti-choice movement defines itself as “pro-life.” Smoke and mirrors, folks. Don’t fall for it! And for the love of all that is worthwhile in this world, don’t waste your time fanning the flames.
    I’m pissed that Bitch can’t play at DYKE March. I’m pissed that anti-womenspace people can’t leave MichFest alone and attack it under the guise of being “pro-trans.” But I cannot get upset at every transwoman out there because when it comes down to it, we all just do the best we can to survive under the Patriarchy and while I take significant issue with the way some people choose to do it, I can’t justify anger at an entire group of people whose politics have be co-opted by a few.

    Posted by Amber | June 9, 2007, 2:48 pm
  17. ^Not Altha, but Ann Bartow. My bad.

    Fixed. — Heart

    Posted by Amber | June 9, 2007, 2:59 pm
  18. Deleted at Amananta’s request.

    — Heart

    Posted by Amananta | June 9, 2007, 3:55 pm
  19. Unfuckingbelievable…while, at the same time, totally believable. Hmmm.

    Grabbed a chance to speak to Catherine Crouch at the NYC viewing of “The Gendercator” last week, after she did a Q&A with the audience (which turned quickly into a “you’re a transphobe” scenario, though she handled it well).

    Anyway, she confirmed that the video (and the other short videos being shown along with it, the whole collection called “Twisted Love”) will be showing at Fest this year, and that she plans to be there, too.

    Posted by hyperjoy7 | June 9, 2007, 4:04 pm
  20. Note: the following isn’t really only a response to the comments of the women whose names I’ve mentioned. I am just taking off from their comments, processing things through, or trying to. — Heart

    I hear what you are saying, Amber, and have a couple of thoughts.

    There seems to be, in this conversation and similar conversations, this impulse to say, “but not ALL.” But not ALL transgender persons…

    When we discuss destructive acts of any other group, whether it is a group of power elites or a marginalized group, do we police each other in this way, i.e.:
    “But not ALL [insert name of marginalized group here] [would agree with this destructive act].”

    Of course we don’t. We take for granted, it is a foregone conclusion, that with any destructive act, “all” are not behind it.

    And how are our discussions as women regularly diverted?

    By someone coming in to tell us, “But! Not ALL!”

    And then the discussion is diverted from a discussion of a misogynist, sexist, or racist, or classist, or speciesist or otherwise destructive incident we are analyzing, bringing to light, or critiquing, to a discussion of how wrong we are to omit this theoretically overriding, more important discussion, which is something like that not “all” members of whatever group would have approved. Before anyone realizes it, it’s not about the destructive act, it’s about how mean and wrong and “bigoted” we are — even if the “all” happens to be men — not to focus on those who did NOT approve the destructive act.

    It may be true, Amber, that most transgender people don’t give two shits about Michfest. Why is that an important point to make, for the purposes of this discussion, though? Why even talk about that?

    I think Aletha’s response to Ann Bartow is very well taken.

    Why is it these bad apples seem to have so much influence in the transgender community? Are they just so skillful at making noise that the Boston Dyke March and Frameline in San Francisco feel they must pay more attention to that noise than to the interests of lesbians? If they are a small minority within the transgender community, why would anyone pay attention to their noise? Why would the larger transgender community not be up in arms about all this, to repudiate their bad apples?

    Indeed. And why would GLBT organizations throughout the United States — throughout the US, including those operating in tier one universities — have published the bogus press release about Michfest which was mailed out last August?

    And then when a responsive press release was mailed out by Michfest, why was it roundly denounced in the most hateful of ways? As it was?

    More on point.

    Last fall, in an effort to build bridges, even some kind of coalition, another radical feminist, char, two transwomen, and I created an online petition in support of woman-only space which affirmed our commitment to walk alongside one another as allies while also respecting and honoring one another’s spaces.

    The petition was overwhelmingly rejected by the transgender community online. One of the transgender women who helped to create the original petition lost a good transgender friend because she did so. Both of the transgender women who signed it were widely criticized, ostracized and called all sorts of names I’m sure you can imagine for having done so.

    It makes no sense, when we are talking politics, to talk about these theoretically huge masses of people who don’t care about politics at all, as though that is somehow salient to the discussion.

    If we talk about some destructive stunt the Democrats have pulled, what sense would it make to say, “But most Democrats do not give two shits about blah, they are just trying to blah.”

    If we talk about some destructive political stunt a woman has done, what would it accomplish to say, “But most women don’t give two shits about blah.”

    If we talk about some destructve political stunt an environmentalist has done, what would it accomplish to say, “But most environmentalists don’t give two shits about whatever.”

    The subtext with statements like this is, the stunt matters less because it does not have widespread support or lots of people don’t know about it. Well– that’s not the issue. The issue with destructive stunts is they hurt people;. And it’s important to talk about how people are hurt; when someone has hurt them for political reasons!

    Destructive political stunts ARE ALWAYS a big deal. A few persons can cause a huge amount of damage under the noses of the apathetic, the uninformed, the apolitical, and all who are going to be either hurt by the stunt or benefitted by it.

    I think the reason the “not all do it” canard gets dragged out in these discussions has to do with fear. With people very, very afraid of being called “transphobe,” “bigot,” all the way up to “Hitler” and “Stalin” (not an exaggeration, that is the big-guns rhetoric that gets hauled out to clobber Michfest women, and self-identified progressive people sit by and watch it and say nothing), of the way anyone who challenges a certain transgender politics gets metaphorically tarred, feathered, run out on a rail, lied about, harrassed, intimidated, shunned, and mistreated.

    But a politics which fears criticism, fears being misunderstood, fears being called names, fears being shunned or anathematized in some way, operates out of fear, is a gutless, useless, politics, especially considering the state of the world’s women at this moment in history.

    We are GOING to be stigmatized and hated, as feminist, for our politics to the precise degree that WOMEN are stigmatized and hated. To the degree that our politics support the liberation of women, to that degree we will be lied about, called names, harrassed, intimidated and otherwise mistreated. To the degree that we speak out, challenge, confront, we can expect to be shouted down. At the very least, I think we ought to say that those who are shouting us down and mistreating us are wrong and have no right to do so.

    It’s not the people who are NOT shouting us down, after all, and who are NOT harrassing, stigmatizing, hating, or making shit up about us which it is important to discuss, it’s the people who ARE doing all of the above!

    This is not a discussion about all of the transgendered persons in the world who do not give two shits about Michfest, politics, women’s issues, and so on.

    It is about the real acts, and the material harm and damage, which has already been caused; to real women by the transgendered persons who DO give two shits.

    Just like our discussions, as feminists, are not about all of the people in the world who do not give two shits about the harm done to women every single day and who wouldn’t hurt women if they did give two shits.

    Our discussions as feminists are about the harm done to women every single minute by the millions of people who want to cause us harm and have the power to do so, and intend to do so, and the way that harm continues to benefit even those who do not give two shits, if they are male.

    It pains me and hurts me to even have to say this kind of thing because it evidences how beaten down we really are as feminists, as women, that we have to fear, fear, fear defending women, defending our own, loving our own, even when the facts are right there in black and white as to how a woman has been actually, materially harmed. Somehow what becomes so important is to hedge everything we say in terms that are way too redolent, in my ears, of “Oh, please, kind sir, I’m not trying to cause any trouble, really, I’m really a nice girl, honest, it’s really fine if you don’t do anything about this, I completely understand, I dont want to be any bother to you, I hope it won’t offend you for me to tell you about this,” the apologies women have had to offer over millennia for daring — DARING — to attempt to save our own goddamn lives.

    A woman is hurt. Bitch.
    A woman is hurt. Catherine Crouch.
    Women are hurt. Vancouver Rape Relief.
    Women are hurt. Vancouver Lesbian Connection.
    Women are hurt. Michigan Women’s Music Festival.
    Women are hurt. Those who perform at the Michigan Women’s Music Festival.

    And on and on it goes.

    The issue is not all the people who don’t give two shits about how and why it was that the women above got hurt. I’m not talking about them.

    This is about politics. I am talking about the POLITICS of the people whose acts and behaviors in fact have and do hurt women.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 4:25 pm
  21. The petition I referred to is here.

    Note of even the persons who signed it, how many signed it anonymously or under pseudonyms.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 4:30 pm
  22. This is just another example of how lesbian culture is being erased – either we live under the queer/LGBT umbrella (and are made virtually invisible in the process) or we can expect to be censored out of view anyway.
    I used to volunteer on a popular chat site that had a small lesbian-only room. The main site was approached by a transwoman who wanted to create a trans chatroom. The site owner assumed that this would take place under the wing of our lesbian space. I couldn’t see why the transroom was not being offered its own space but was being incorporated into the lesbian space, with the assumption that the lesbian volunteers would help set it up and monitor it. As far as I could see, this would mean that our little space would be open to people who identified as male and straight! I was told categorically by the other lesbian volunteers that we’re all LGBT and that the transroom had to come under our wing. In the end, the transwoman turned down the offer of the space, as she said she identified as a straight woman and was rather unhappy about being grouped in with a “bunch of lesbians”. Had she, identifying as a straight woman, wanted our lesbian space, time and energy, it would have been given to her.
    As other people have asked, why is this only happening to spaces (usually under-resourced) that are for marginalised women? Why, when transgendered people identify as male, female, gay and straight, is it assumed that lesbian space is the appropriate space to take? Why, when there’s any dissent, is it lesbian women who are expected to leave?

    Posted by eilidh70 | June 9, 2007, 5:19 pm
  23. Is anyone noticing if transmen and transwomen are having different demands? It seems that they are being spoken about as if they were the same. I think it was mostly transwomen who led the opposition at Michigan, but transmen who object to Gendercator. I get that the gender binary is blurry, but are FTM and MTF speaking with one voice on these issues or are they being dumped into one category?

    I am so highly offended and pissed that Bitch was blacklisted because she performed at Michigan. How many hundreds of thousands of us worked in one way or another at Michigan over the years, not just as performers but as craftswomen, cooks, tree cutters, plumbers, what have you. Sheesh. Should we all be blacklisted from DYKE events?

    I mean, really, who is in charge here? Why did the organizers of the DYKE march cave instead of teliing the trans protesters to fuck off? Maybe the DYKE march should stop saying it’s trans inclusive to avoid this kind of HISteria.

    Posted by Hyppolita | June 9, 2007, 6:15 pm
  24. A LOT of the people involved in fighting MichFest are NOT trans! They’re anti-womenspace, anti-lesbian, anti-womyn people. They’re defining the movement as “pro-trans” much as the anti-choice movement defines itself as “pro-life.” Smoke and mirrors, folks. Don’t fall for it!

    When asked not to fall for something, what is exactly being expected? Should the fight to protect women born women spaces be abandoned because the face of the opposition may or may not represent a group it claims to be representing? If the wrong face is being used then it is the responsibility of the true owners of that face to fight with the people who are using their face misleadingly.

    The answer is not for the women born women who are being attacked to quit. Your request for women born women to be passive can in fact be translated as anti-women born women space.

    Is that what you are doing Amber, are you requesting that women born women not defend their women born women spaces?

    And for the love of all that is worthwhile in this world, don’t waste your time fanning the flames.

    Again this can be translated to you requesting that women born women surrender and not fight for their own space. Is that your intent? Do you wish women born women to be passive? If the face of the force is wrong, it is the responsibility of the people whose face is being used to fight the misused.

    I’m pissed that Bitch can’t play at DYKE March. I’m pissed that anti-womenspace people can’t leave MichFest alone and attack it under the guise of being “pro-trans.” But I cannot get upset at every transwoman out there

    There is no proof that women born women are or have been pissed at every transwoman out there. If anything, all the commenters so far have been very particular in saying that they personally support the transwomen in their lives. If transwomen are not behind invading women born women spaces then it should be transwomen who fight the people who are using their name, be it other transwomen or whoever else.

    because when it comes down to it, we all just do the best we can to survive under the Patriarchy and while I take significant issue with the way some people choose to do it, I can’t justify anger at an entire group of people whose politics have be co-opted by a few.

    Again, in the above comments and in Heart’s original post no one condemned an ENTIRE group. Women born women are protesting the people who are not women born women who are trying to invade women born women space. It is not the responsibliity of the women defending the space to uncovered who is actually doing the invading. If the people who are trying to invade the space say they are transwomen and in fact they are not, or they do not represent the collective motives of transwomen, then it is transwomen’s responsibility to put these space invaders in check.

    Women born women have been rolling over far too long to be asked, no demanded (by being called transphobes and demonized in other ways) to give up their space because the invaders may or may not represent whoever they claim they are representing.

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 9, 2007, 8:56 pm
  25. Hyperjoy7, great to see you’ve got your blog going again, I’ll get you back on the blogroll, and everybody else:

    For those reading, Hyperjoy7 actually *saw* Gendercator and has done an extensive and thorough review of the showing of it here:

    http://angrydykeme.blogspot.com/2007/06/gendercator-yet-another-charge-of.html
    Some thoughts I had reading what you wrote, Hyperjoy7:

    * I think the term “tranny” or “trannies” (and for those reading, the term was used once in the film and is the one thing Hyperjoy7 takes serious issue with) is one of those terms that is acceptable in some places and contexts and geographical locations and not others and is continually in flux, as words which are being reclaimed generally are. I agree pretty much with what you say about the use of the term, in general, but my thinking is, hate speech, epithets, are used in many films for many reasons as a function of context, to illustrate a point, for all kinds of reasons besides to offend the targets of the hate speech. From what you said about the film, it sounds like the woman being forced to have sex change surgery was expressing exasperation and deep resentment. If she used the term “fundies,” that might be similarly offensive to religious people (and I’m not remembering now what word the actress in question used for the religious people who were responsible for people having to choose gender.)

    I mean, consider some of the words used in some of the spoken word stuff posted by transgender persons on the Fest boards in the past, stuff like telling wimmin to “suck [the transperson’s] cock,” (which this person performs all over the place) or the pervasive use of misogynist hate speech in films and media, some of which goes unaddressed and is intended to be misogynist hate speech, it’s true, but some of which is intended to illustrate a point or punctuate a not-necessarily-sexist message.

    * As to the distinction between transgender and transsexual, I agree with you except that I think the use of the term “transgender” obfuscates something that is really important from a feminist perspective, which you also touched on, which is that women have been transgressing gender forever and they still are and “transgender” is not a word they use for themselves. Even though they are women, transgressing gender. That term is too often used, in my experience, in ways which make the ongoing, herstoric transgression of gender by feminists and lesbians invisible.

    Amananta: as usual, you have ovaries. Thank you for putting yourself out there in the way you have and for all of your really great insights and observations. And yes! Where is Catherine Crouch’s “free speech”? Where is Bitch’s “free speech”?

    Hyppolita, I’m betting the organizers of the Dyke march caved because some of them were transwomen who “identify” as dykes. And because some were transmen who continue to be part of the dyke march anyway. :/

    As to lumping transpersons all together, I think at one time it was mostly transwomen/MTFs who took issue with Michfest, but these days it’s transmen, transwomen, and various uninvolved outsiders who happily include themselves within the category “queer” via some letter of the alphabet, who think themselves to be allies to transpersons and who for some reason I can’t figure out feel entitled to weigh in in various aggressive and prick-like ways. One highly vocal leader of the attacks on Michfest most recently is a dyke, female, who identifies as trans. This person opposes transmen on the land but has steadfastly insisted that those who “identify” as women, without respect to their sex, should stroll on through the gates, whatevs.

    I don’t really get the sense that it’s mostly transmen, either, who object to the Gendercator. Susan Stryker played a central role in getting it torpedoed in San Francisco and she is an MTF. And just based on what I’ve read and heard, I think it’s the whole “Queer”/GLBTQRSTUVWXYZ contingent that got on it the moment somebody got on the internet and started typing in “teh tranzphobez!” Without having any clue what the film even is.

    But yeah. Like I said. I guess we wimmin are going to have to start submitting all of our writing/films/poetry/music for approval from now on, lest we all get boycotted and banned from our own events. By people who are, oftentimes, MALE!

    Heart

    Posted by Heart | June 9, 2007, 9:17 pm
  26. Yeah, Kitty, so true that nobody on this thread has at any time demonized some general category of transpersons. My title is very specific: “transgender activists.” Transgender activists are not even necessarily, heck, maybe not even usually, transgender! A lot of the time, as Amber says, they are crusader types who are anti-feminist, anti-radfem, anti-lesbian-separatist, anti-women space, and this particular battle appeals to them for reasons which have more to do with misogyny than with supporting transgender persons (even if they are women, which is sad). This is especially true online where all sorts of clueless types who have ZERO transgender persons in their lives and never have had jump on the bandwagon mostly because they don’t like radical feminists and may not even *be* feminists.

    If transwomen are not behind invading women born women spaces then it should be transwomen who fight the people who are using their name, be it other transwomen or whoever else.

    Yes, it should be, and a tiny number have tried and have really paid for it.

    However, there do seem to be some transpersons who are becoming vocal in their disagreements with the movement which speaks for them without their permission. I have a link I’ll post in a minute, I have to go find it.

    But yeah, commenting as though anyone has ever remotely suggested or inferred, much less said, that all transpersons did anything at all is misleading. Nobody here has suggested anything like that.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 9:35 pm
  27. Goodbye to Transgender and All That

    Link originally posted by Brenda, who identifies as “WBT” (Woman Born Trans), and who has attended the Festival, to the Michfest boards.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 9:56 pm
  28. “I cannot even talk about this in my own home without dealing with a load of histrionic accusations of bigotry from my wife, who is trans.”

    It’s a comfort to know I’m not alone in that, Amananta.

    Posted by Goldfish | June 9, 2007, 10:21 pm
  29. O-M-G, I just read Suzan Cooke and it made me remember someone I read who fits in the category she is talking about, –transgender. I don’t remember where, I think it was sort of a busy blog/site. The author was/is a woman born woman who was in the process of transitioning, taking medicine and whatever else it entails and then decided she no longer wanted to go through with it after putting her family and friends through a living hell I can imagine. Out of curiosity I went through the archives looking for anything she wrote, and to my astonishment, each piece had an air of misogyny, sometimes more than an air, like she hated being a woman, but she did not go through becoming a man. It seems a bit of play-acting. The way people say many hippies (baby boomers) were all against the system and then sold the system out and became the capitalist’s pigs they were supposedly against. Like if being a hippie at that moment was the chic thing to do. There is something about this transgender thing that seems fraudulent or if that is too strong of a word, temporary. Not temporary as in waiting to transition, but temporary in the sense that when the play acting no longer thrills them, or makes them hip or allows them to play with the cool kids they can and will revert back to the gender that their sex born them with under a patriarchy. I wonder if there is a common age range for people who identify with transgender. Something that may pinpoint a time when someone is refusing to grow up. Like if I wanted to play like a man and reap the benefits of being a man but then come home to a husband and pretend to get along in the patriarchy as a heterosexual in order to benefit however that may benefit me. It seems opportunistic. Let me be whatever I can be within whatever situation that will thrill me the most at any given time. In a way, it reflects our current society. No one wants to fight the real cause that causes us pain so instead band-aids are created, outlets of escape, all the while the real problem is still there like an elephant in the room. That elephant being the patriarchy is oppressing, suppressing, and causes repressing.
    From Cooke:

    The transgender community is like a cult that pounds extremely negative messages into the heads of people treated for TS/HBS. Its fear mongering aims to convince post-sex reassignment surgery people to stay in the transgender ghetto rather than assimilate in to the world of members of their new sex.

    Thanks Heart for responding. I am going to make sure I am more aware when I read and use trans-gender vs trans-sexual

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 9, 2007, 10:54 pm
  30. Hey, Kitty, you know, I wasn’t really making a statement about the use of the words “transgender” and “transsexual,” because it seems to me they are terms under negotiation? At least transgender is, for sure. In other words, I wasn’t endorsing what the writer of that article wrote from the standpoint of feminist politics. I think the article is good and honest, and I see what she’s saying and really relate to it. She’s saying she’s been tokenized, her reality harnessed to an agenda she doesn’t share, a politics she doesn’t believe in and a group she wants no part of.
    The point I mostly wanted to make was that what is referred to as the “transgender movement,” people who practice a certain flavor of transgender politics, can be, to understate, extremely heavy handed in the direction of people who take issue with their politics– in the case of the writer of this article, including post-SRS transwomen who have no interest in “identifying” as trans. The heavy-handedness in this case extends to all the things I’ve listed and many more.
    The other points in the article I liked were the way the author points out that presenting or dressing consistently with gender stereotypes, no matter who is doing it, is not a feminist act and so there is nothing “trans” gender about it. It is complicity with gender stereotypes.
    And I liked the way the author confirms what many of us have been saying for a long, long time. She says she works or has worked with lesbian separatists and it was no big.
    See, this is what I mean. This is a complicated situation which pertains to a specific marginalized group of people, when it is Michfest we are talking about. To barge in like a blankety blank prick and tell Michfest women what to do and how to do it — ignorantly, too, without knowledge of herstory, no insights as to what the situation even is, just because someone called somebody a transphobe, is so wrong. Nobody else, no other marginalized group, would be expected to even pay any heed to that kind of aggression and intrusion.
    And then to take it to a whole new level and punish women simply for performing at Michfest?
    Just wrong.
    As to why people transition, all the various impulses and reasons and so on, you know, that is a whole nother difficult subject which I think transpersons would have to weigh in on and so I’d rather not even get into that here. If you want to know the truth, I don’t really have anything to say about that, about someone doing whatever she or he feels is necessary to be all right in the world. I have my ideas about things politically, of course, about what will and will not result in positive change for women, but on a practical level, people do what they do, I am not really interested in criticizing them.
    What this is about, though, is that favor, that giving the benefit of the doubt, being generous, not being returned to me. It’s about how wrong it is for people to be ostracized and boycotted because they violate a specific party line to which many the movement claims don’t hold themselves! What this is about is being bullied by people who do not have the best interests of women in mind.
    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 11:08 pm
  31. Okay. I’m sorry. I think what I was trying to work out in my own thoughts inadvertently diverted your bigger point. Not my intentions. I think I got the bigger point already and proceeded to working out some of the smaller details that I am not comfortable with and wanted to resolve. I forget we are on a stage and the dialogue that I (or anyone else) contribute can divert the original intent. I type so fast that I probably put it out there too fast. Tis what I need to remember when it comes to activism exchange,—all the possible diversions.

    What this is about, though, is that favor not being returned to me. It’s about how wrong it is for people to be ostracized and boycotted because they violate a specific party line to which many who have “transitioned” don’t hold themselves! What this is about is being bullied by people who do not have the best interests of women in mind.

    Yes indeed!

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 9, 2007, 11:18 pm
  32. Hey, Kitty, no need to apologize! I knew you were working it out by writing it out. I just know how these things tend to go and so try to keep them from going certain places.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 9, 2007, 11:30 pm
  33. Heart: “the author points out that presenting or dressing consistently with gender stereotypes, no matter who is doing it, is not a feminist act and so there is nothing ‘trans’ gender about it. It is complicity with gender stereotypes.”
    I thought that the “trans” in transgender/transsexual referred not to a value judgment “trans” as transgressive but to the state of being on the opposite/different side (like in chemistry), which set up for the term “cisgender”.

    I’m sure someone else has said it in a more articulate way than me, but I think that supporting women’s spaces does not have anything to do with whether you are pro or anti trans. I think that it’s about supporting the right of a group that’s been traditionally marginalized to define themselves and their own spaces.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 10, 2007, 12:30 am
  34. Hey, Littoralmermaid, this was actually what the author said:

    Good-bye to all the word games that try to turn “woman” from being descriptive of any adult female into a word that describes someone who acts and dresses in a certain manner. I’m too much of a feminist not to see that one as having the potential to oppress all women.

    So I think it “works” either way, really. Dressing in a certain matter equalling woman isn’t the “opposite” or “different” side, it’s just same old same old. Which from the perspective of feminism means it is not transgressive.

    But yes, I completely agree with you– supporting women’s spaces doesn’t have to do with positions on transgender at all.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 10, 2007, 12:40 am
  35. ???

    this is one issue I know nothing about, or understand it, as far as trans this and trans that and what the hell is gendercator?

    I get the part about a woman’s only space though…but the more I read to try to understand the more confusing it gets.

    i’m at a loss for words, :0, i know shock huh, lol,

    but what little i do get, thus far, is the whole issue with transwomen? [is that when a man becomes a woman? or is that transman???] but anyway,

    is that their ‘desire’ for, or no, what they feel is ‘attractive’ about being a woman, is actually the very thing that is the source of oppression of womyn, and therefore that is where the root of conflict lies?

    so in that, in a way they reinforce the oppression or justifications of oppression or paternalist domination over womyn by setting up those patriarchial definitions of feminity as the goal?

    is it something like that…just trying to figure this out, i’ve read similar discourses on anarcha-feminist sites and though i am aware of GLBT as far as issues on human rights goes,

    this protest against Michfest, seems to me a bit odd, as isn’t the intent of Michfest to fight those oppressions therefore, it would be sort of equivalent in letting conservative pro-patriarchial womyn, lets say right wing, come to Michfest and attempt to change the beliefs or create an uncomfortable environment whether complicit or not…

    ???

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 2:36 am
  36. Yeah, Tasha, you’ve got the idea.

    Michfest is a community. And I think you should come to it! You too, Kitty. All the women here. You women would, I believe, love it. I wish every girl, every woman, would come to Michfest, and all the little boys to age 10, too, although they go to Brother Sun camp at the Festival, but it is an amazing place in which to sprout a little boy and help him resist becoming a man.

    Anyway, it’s a community. It’s really what remains, in community form, of the 60s counterculture. Women have been meeting on womyn’s land now for 36 years. Michfest is the world the way womyn would create it, would run it, or as close an approximation as is possible. There are womyn at Michfest who have been attending every year for 36 years and have never missed a Festival. The land is lesbian-owned and Fest is lesbian-run and is a lesbian Festival, but it is open to all girls and women and, again, boys through age 10.

    The roots of Michfest are in radical feminism/lesbian separatism.

    Over the years, there have been, as you might imagine, many, many difficulties and conflicts and contested issues, but the Festival survives and thrives. There were issues over boys on the land and the compromise was, babies/toddler boys through age 4 allowed on the land, and then Brother Sun Camp, which is on the land but boys 5-10 do not go into the Festival, proper, they stay with their moms and the Festie workers in their own cool space with activities designed for them. There were issues over the practice of SM on the land in the 90s, when SM was a big deal. They were somewhat, though not entirely, resolved, and there are lingering difficulties. And there have been issues over male persons on the land, i.e., “transwomen,” (male-born persons who present as women). There are some current issues over “transmen” on the land (female-born persons who identify and present as men), but not so many, in part because transmen generally identify as men and don’t want to go to the Festival, which is a women’s festival.

    Michfest is for those who were born female and who have lived as girls and women all of our lives. The idea is that for all of the differences between us, as girls and women, we share a specific experience of subordination, from the time of our birth, under male heterosupremacy. At the Festival, we heal and we bond in ways which are more difficult in the outside world. Fest is clothing optional. It is on hundreds of beautiful wooded acres. Everything is built each year by womyn, and taken down each year by womyn so that wildlife, trees and the forest are impacted as little as possible. Womyn camp in tents. There are special areas for disabled womyn and deaf womyn with facilities to meet their special needs. All of the Festival is accessible via wheelchair and everything is signed by an interpreter for the deaf, including all the music. There are areas for crones, over 50s, over 40s. There are chem-free areas, family areas, clean-and-sober areas to camp in. There is a womyn of color tent run by and open to womyn of color only for meetings, gatherings, but with a porch where womyn of all races can hang out.

    The week starts on Tuesday night, really, with a ritual out in the meadow under the stars, with drummers and singing and the spiral dance. (All week long, there are womyn drumming in the background.) There are workshops presented Wed-Sun, some “intensives” and then general workshops. Any Festie can facilitate a workshop by sending in her information by the due date. (Which was yesterday.) The workshops are on every subject under the sun, everything from yoga to Reiki, to radical feminism, to transgender, to internalized misogyny, to Amazon skills, to drumming, One World Choir, breastcasting, astrology, singing in sacred circle. Woman musicians perform every day from Wed. on, afternoon and evening. There is also spoken word, there are poetry readings, dances. Vegetarian meals are served in a community tent every day, breakfast, lunch, dinner.

    Every Festie serves one or two workshifts of four hours each as part of attending Fest. Each year, Festies make a quilt together in the quilters tent. On Saturday night, the year’s quilt is paraded in to the main concert area, “Night Stage,” then there is the Gaia Girls parade (Gaia Girls are 5-12 and have their own tent and activities all week). Then come the belly dancers, the stilters and the drummers.

    There are alternative medical services and supplies available in the Womb, as well as womyn who will hug you if you are having a hard time. There is Oasis for women struggling emotionally or spiritually where counselors are available. There are recovery meetings all week. There are womyn of color sweat lodges and sweat lodges for healing from sexual abuse and rape.

    There’s a Lois Lane run each year. All the paths and camping areas have female names: Amazon Acres, Lois Lane, Crone Heights. There is the Cuntree Store. There is a huge crafters’ tent where womyn sell beautiful art, crafts, books, clothing they’ve made. There is drumming every night in the Triangle around the fire. Showers are taken in outdoor showers– an amazing, amazing experience. All the soap, etc. is biodegradable and everything is recycled.

    No males are allowed on the land and no male voices are to be on the land, including in music that is played.

    The Festival, for its flaws and human frailities, is a magical place for those of us born female. When I walked through the gates the first year I went (2004) I started weeping and wept off and on for all the days I was there. When you arrive, womyn greet you and say, “Welcome home.” I recognized this place as the place I had dreamt of and imagined all of my life and didn’t know existed.

    Fest is peaceful. There are womyn-created expectations which womyn honor, but there is no enforcement other than womyn reminding each other what the expectations are (like put your butts in the Altoid tins womyn save all year for Fest, don’t throw them on the path.

    The idea is that on the land, womyn may be, present, as they are, free of the sexist expectations of the surrounding culture. Our lives, our bodies, the way we look are celebrated on the land in all of the diversity we know, as womyn, exists among us. There are many womyn on the land who are gender-nonconforming, who are bearded, for example, who, in the outside world, are “read” as men. On the land, they don’t have to be concerned about the difficulties they face because they don’t conform. They are home there, among other womyn who respect and appreciate their lived experiences.

    There are a certain number of transwomen who have intended to come onto the land despite the fact that it is womyn’s land, designed for those of us born female, who have lived all of our lives as girls and women. From the perspective of radical feminism, it is not transgressive to “change” one’s sex whether via presentation or surgery. Why not live as one is, celebrate who we are, and thus broaden, force open, the sex stereotypes which confine all of us? That’s what the festival is about. Females, born into the “sex class”, judged all of our lives by how fuckable we are or aren’t, coming together to heal in a context in which the community values and ethics are completely different and womon-centered and out from under the noses of those who were not born into the “sex class”.

    Although we don’t believe, those of us who are radfems, that changing one’s sex to match the expectations of patriarchy is ultimately helpful to women, we are, in general, allies to transpersons, recognizing that we share common struggles. But the festival week is for females, only. Some in the transgender movement say this is discriminatory, bigoted, transphobic, and there are two organizations which they created just to oppose the Festival as space for females only. And they have staged demonstrations every year for at least 10 years, including *on the land*.

    So, that’s some beginning, basic information about it.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 10, 2007, 3:45 am
  37. I don’t know what it is, but I find that my posts to any internet venue lately accomplish the exact opposite of what I intend them to. I think I’m making what is a concise and clear point but then, when reading reactions to my comments, I realize that what people have taken from them are so far beyond what I truly think or what I intended to convey that I wonder how else I can possible effectively communicate! It’s got me a bit nonplussed, and I’m not sure how to handle it other than to post less and just read and think more.

    All that is to say, Kitty & Heart, I’ve read your responses to my post but I’m not going to respond and it’s not because I’m ignoring you or have nothing to say. Just that I don’t think I did a very good job of communicating my stance on this in the first place and in the interest of not confusing what I’m trying to say further, I’m just going to hold my tongue. But I’m still reading, for sure, and appreciate all the stuff you all are saying!

    Posted by Amber | June 10, 2007, 3:54 am
  38. Ah, shucks, Amber. 😦 But thanks for clarifying.

    As to the Gendercator, Tasha, it’s a film created by a feminist lesbian filmmaker who is highly regarded. It is science fiction, about a future in which, because of the Religious Right and the transgender movement, persons whose sex is “ambiguous” are required by law to “choose” what sex they will be, and then surgeries and hormones are provided to them.

    Some in the transgender movement didn’t like the sounds of this and they were successful in getting the showing of the film canceled in San Francisco.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 10, 2007, 4:04 am
  39. Oh, OK, makes sense now…

    but I wonder, well I saw the documentary [and i don’t remember the name but i remember the film i could probably look it up…maybe i will here in bit, yea, i will, let me see if i can find it Gwen Araujo Story, yea thats the one…well i watched it and the whole time to me she was a woman, and this film really touched my heart,

    yea she was born a man body wise but emotionally and i would even go as far to say spiritually she was a woman, now she did personafi the traits of feminity etc that like i suggested are the traits that men use to justify or in that bio-determined excuse to demean all womyn etc., [if i said that right]

    and it made me question a lot of things about gender and so forth…and i felt that the entire time it was like Gwen was in this place of no where to belong really, and maybe its because of knowing what that is to some degree [due to childhood, etc]

    but, could there be, like, lets say, four days added where, like it wouldn’t have to be all the womyn stay as due to time constraints, etc…but like, at the end of Michfest, couldnt’ there be like a four day camp of like, a type of ‘introduction to sisterhood’ where there could be workshops to work like a

    bridge….

    between transwomen and natural born womyn [and i could see where for transwomyn that could present a conflict as many do believe that though they may be in ‘body’ a man they are in fact, emotionally, spiritually, and in some ways, physically in how they feel differently on levels than lets say a man in his natural state [and i realize this is going to open up some disagreement but its worth looking at] and they feel more woman–

    maybe for us thats hard to understand but I have to wonder…now I realize that opens up all sorts of whole new questions as to what gender is, sex etc….and maybe its not the same for every individual…now regarding gendercator, o.k. yea i can see that as a rigid patriarchial social forced, key on ‘forced’ construct, in making one choose…

    even in cases of people born with both sexes [and i met a woman who was born this way] and in some cases they wait to see if one sex leans more to another but in one case i knew, a couple in church btw [when i used to go to church] they had to choose and i remember the home study group talking about this and they said the it was the hardest most difficult decision the couple had to make…

    and you know i’ve often wondered about that..the woman i met, i met her at a bar [when i used to work in bars] and she told me in the bathroom, i had heard and thought ‘yea right’ but she told me, told me she was born with both genitalia and that she grew up with them until she was 12, and she started her menstrual and thats why they chose her female side…but in ways she had some of the qualities of male sex too, and she was very open in discussing this with me and you know she was the sweetest person and i’ve never forgotten her, and i see her as a woman…no doubt nothing…

    now i’ve read some stuff online on trans boards and yea, i mean some of its ‘out there’ but then, i think there is some that is like ‘out there’ on several communities and i sort of think its alot to do with the fact that ‘westerners have too damn much time on their hands’, like in most places people are worried about where their next meal is coming from or whether the drought or the rebels will dry up the fields or shoot them or ax them to death…

    and here we are in the west like, sort of obsessed with some of the most crazy things, like, ok, S&M, or BDSM…i’m sure that if you went to lets say, parts of Africa and presented some of that they’d look at westerners as if they are absolutely gone mad…

    [sorry reading a book right now, by Rhodesian author, i read too many books from foreign authors] but anyhow…

    while i totally concur with you all on the need for womyn’s space apart from natural born men, ok that makes perfect sense, and that week should be kept that way,

    however, this too is a great opportunity, lets say, add a four day or five day workshop, like i said, a Bridge of sorts, to open the pathway for discourse, healing, communication, and in that process, i think there could be some findings on why men [as far as emotionally, etc] are so bound to patriarchy other than just the priviledge…the effects of patriarchy on men, boys, bust down some of those ‘myths’ of what womyn are or what they think…not only that it would be good for transwomyn too…

    ok i probably am not saying this right, but i was thinking about this last night [see i have really bad insomia, since childhood so i sit up and think, can’t sleep so i think, alot…know crazy huh, but anyway] i read some of this discussion yesterday so started thinking and theorizing and though i have to be honest i haven’t read that much about the whole psychology and issues that trans deal with and the conficts and so forth..

    just from what i was thinking o.k., but like, its almost like, trans are like ‘keys’ to both worlds, like they know what it is to be men, even if lets say, they have always identified as womyn but in society they’ve had to be forcefully [and really, i mean its often a life threatening if they aren’t] identified with other men, so surely they’ve known the psychology of men and most likely the intimate psychology of men that men don’t show womyn, you know how men can see through other men that they dare not show anyone else, esp the patriarchial world [this varies in countries]

    but then too, they’ve been treated with contempt in some ways [i would have to say it is different from what a natural born woman deals with as far as internalization, etc…so no doubt, that Difference is there] but emotionally, or even just a little, transmen or sorry transwomyn do relate to that a bit…

    but one difference i did see, when thinking on this,

    is that, 1. when womyn are attacked, in what ever way, its because, they are, womyn, natural born womyn, etc…

    where as, 2. when transwomyn are attacked, in what ever way, its because, i would say majority of time…as i’ve not done the studies, they are, due to being ‘men’ who’ve left the constructs of natural born men or what is perceived or expected from them as men in a male world.

    i think there is a lot to be learned from transwomyn/and transmen [and i will add something to that here in bit] but in the same regard,

    and this i Have seen on discussions, transwomyn can learn alot about what it truly is to be a woman and sometimes in discussions i’ve read, its like they ’empathise’ but they don’t really grasp it on the ‘inside’ what it is, to be from the day you are born, to be singled out and treated differently because you are a woman…its not that they don’t try, but it is sometimes like they still see things from how a ‘man would look at how womyn feel, etc..’, some transwomyn, i haven’t met all transwomyn and so I don’t WANT TO GENERALIZE HERE…

    see to me its like i do see a huge difference between transwomyn and gay men, a huge difference, because its like the transwoman has crossed over, in many ways…and like that movie, about Gwen, the part in the end where she [as a little girl/well transgirl but i saw her as a girl] was running through the forest and the bird…[i raise doves, well only have one now but doves you know are unique creatures…the ringneck doves, they are in many ways androgenous, they can, like two males bond for life or two females or they can half way through life bond sex by same sex then later change…they are somewhat fluid in that, where as, parrots now, aren’t…i alway thought that was something too in that the Ringneck/or White Dove is the symbol of the Holy Spirit–something to chew on there….]

    i don’t know but i sort of understand the frustration of transwomyn [not so much transmen as i have issues with men in general, no offense, not anything against transmen at all, just my own conflicts there…and i think too, because my bio-mom was so in ways like a man…so understand where that comes from…maybe in a few years..right now its just a bit too painful, as i’m working through some issues there…and maybe that has something to do with why i can sort of see something in this whole conflict…especially in that forced gender or sex choice as i grew up having that abuse…in so many ways…]

    but anyhow…to the transgenders here, i think the whole getting shows cancelled and everything sends out the wrong message and does more to defeat getting being heard and understood….and maybe thats partly due to working out so much, you know….because it would be, it seems, like having your foot in two different worlds, though linked yet divided, and painfully so…added to that, the constructs that maybe many have taken on the negative constructs without really realizing…maybe in like 50 years those will be understood more and we’ll see transgenders actually revolting against those constructs and traits that they find today, appealing…

    because they haven’t had the experience with them as long as natural born womyn, maybe/???

    [don’t get offended i’m pondering here…]

    but anyway, maybe a four or five day workshop, after Michfest, a Bridge, could have some powerful potential, not just for transwomyn/transmen [or how you would set that up, have no idea] but then too, could possibly open up some avenues in how to address changing patriarchy on a social psychology level, in other words, if the sides would learn to really ‘listen’ rather than force views [and i’ve noticed this on some of the feminist boards that do have many transgender womyn on them, its like, this wall that they butt heads on constantly…especially in that whole area of feminity, transwomyn love [well the ones i’ve read, like i said, in no way is this a generalization and i haven’t studied or observed enough o.k….] and then, the womyn will be on the total opposite side of the pole and sometimes, yea, they will be nasty to the transgenders, defensive or angry, its like ok. you’re a man and you’re glorifying the things that have been the issue of my being raped, topics like that and boy i mean you can see the hurt and rage and i can tell, the transwomyn feel the pain and empathy but at the same time,

    well its like, a white woman, feeling empathy for a woman of color, but no matter how much empathy you may have, you really can’t grasp it in the gut because you’ve never walked outside and been fearful,

    because of the color of you skin, not because you are only a woman or because of class but because of the color of you skin and so its sort of like that….

    why womyn of color, working in feminism especially those who are very aware of racism within their own race or racism between ethnicity are so powerful in relating to womyn those barriers and conflicts and tensions….

    btw it was a friend of mine, an African American who shared that with me one day when i said, yea i understand, i’ve never said that sense, because i may understand on a surface level or from what i see my daughter go through or from dealing with racism which is a little different in scope from white men because i have a bi-racial child..

    i will not understand ‘internally’ what that is, to live with that past knowledge of history and present to be singled out because of my skin color…[maybe reverse racism but even That, is different because its base on ‘anger towards racism’ if that makes any sense…not justifying it, its just as sinister, but the root is different]

    so anyway…blah blah blah…

    it does bring up some really uncomfortable and yes, dangerous issues [because those eugenics and those misogynists are always there to take whatever progress or understanding and use to twist and force us right back into…if you know what i mean]

    but where there is darkness, there is light too.

    to close, on the transmen, did you see the Nightline special, two years ago i think, where this woman, well a transman, went to this all male bonding thing, and during she started seeing conflict and the female sex cropping up inside her and that brought up some real conflict in her….

    and well she wrote a book and i never did get it but that documentary always got me to wonder too….

    no easy answers on this, thats for sure…but maybe, maybe there’s something that could come out of this,

    that is positive, for both womyn, men, transwomyn, transmen, gay, children, etc etc etc…

    if anything, another door in understanding the ‘strength in patriarchy over men in that psychological way’ and in understanding, again other than just simplifying it to just priviledge or bio-determinism, which i know its easy to do….as we’ve been hurt by it for eons…’ but in understanding the effects on a deep psyche level..we can see other ways,

    in changing it and overthrowing it.

    And half of that probably came out sounding like kaka but oh well…

    peace

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 6:00 am
  40. I would like to add that I use the spelling ‘womyn’ and the other alternate spelling of the words woman. Something to consider, when the word womyn is used, it means born female, nothing to do with men, man, being born male.

    So, as a consideration for the definition and her-storical meaning of the word womyn and all of the other alternative spellings of that word, those words were created by those born female to mean born female. Born Female only. It is out of place to refer to a person born male as wom’y’n.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 10, 2007, 8:56 am
  41. Someone attempted to comment yesterday alleging they were from Boston and had the inside scoop, and insisting that transgender activists were not directly responsible for Bitch’s performance being canceled. This person said inviting Bitch had been someone’s “mistake.”

    I didn’t approve the comment because I don’t think it was a woman who wrote it, and the comments are to be woman-only here. I also didn’t approve it because it set off my bullshit detectors and sounded like a lie.

    Which it was.

    So I’m glad I didn’t approve it. I approve bullshit too often, really, because I am always trying to be so goddamn “fair.” :/

    Anyway, posted elsewhere by someone who went to the Boston Dyke March, THIS is what is true:

    It was extremely rude and unprofessional of the event’s organizers to cancel Bitch at the last minute. However, i am unsure if they canceled… at the last minute or were too untruthful to publicize the cancellation until the last minute. I went to the dyke march last night wearing my Michigan shirt (my girlfriend was dressed in hers as well) with a sign reading “respect all womyn” on one side, and “bring Bitch back” on the other. I got mostly positive comments with some people saying they didn’t even know what was going on and finding the cancellation completely ridiculous. A couple told me they had driven 200 miles just to see Bitch.

    What made the event extremely offensive and reeking of bullshit and individual dyke march committee members’ agendas was the speeches several committee members made [extolling] the virtues of having a community that disagreed and having an inter-community dialogue. They also stressed how they were open to everyone…

    …I approached the organizers and asked them to expand on why they cancelled Bitch. They said that although this wasn’t their belief “several” (they didn’t specify the number) people approached the committee and said they felt oppressed by Bitch. …

    This whole experience has left me feeling disgusted with the Boston lesbian community.

    So. What “dialog” did the writer of this comment, or women traveling 200 miles to see Bitch, have the benefit of? What’s up with this extolling of “inter-community dialog,” when a bunch of womyn were completely excluded from it and a decision was made to which they completely objected, in favor not of dykes but of transgender activists?

    Heart

    Posted by Heart | June 10, 2007, 12:56 pm
  42. dont’ put me in a box,

    had enough of that from bio-mom thank you

    i chose to use the term womyn not for the reason you mentioned…in fact i wasn’t even aware of many of the ‘woman oriented polemic and philosophy’ then…

    i chose to use ‘y’ as a revolt against the male dominated ‘polemic’ and also the deliberate ‘burial of womyn’s contributions to far left revolutions’ by BOTH MEN AND WOMYN in the far left, in the documents and information of far left ideology and revolutions especially…

    the only womyn ever mentioned were a few ‘tokens’ who were under and somewhat obedient to the male polemic [Marxism/Leninism, etc]

    so in my research and struggle against that i decided to chose Y instead of e, to represent ‘womyn’s political autonomy’,

    i was studying Alexandria Kollantie and Clara Zetkin at the time, it had nothing, NOTHING to do with lesbian separatism or any kind of separatism, in why i chose to use it…

    for me it was a revolution that was personal, within the far left framework and when i started using womyn in essays i submitted to several far left boards and publications it caused quite a stir, and for a year i was harassed over it, targeted, and i wasn’t even aware of the entire political and feminist background/development of the use of womyn, wimmin, womun, etc…

    how i evolved and my personal revolution against NOT only the forced gender ‘construction’ or ‘deconstruction’ within the far left but also against the ‘forced deconstruction and construction to fit into some woman’s mold, my bio mom, in which i dealt with for years, and she was a second wave feminist’, but she was too, a fascist, and a misogynist though manifested differently…not in the right wing sort of way that is…

    so yes i tend to view things from a entirely different angle with a bent, not bias, but a bent, i don’t see things on every level that this group does or that group…

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 3:28 pm
  43. in addition,

    so yea, i’m out of place,

    and you want to know something,

    thats just fine with me, I define who I am as a Woman, Womun, Womb-in,

    AND NO ONE ELSE,

    MALE OR FEMALE

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 3:46 pm
  44. (Sorry if I hijack the thread, Heart, but I wanted to clear a few things up)
    Tasha –
    “even in cases of people born with both sexes [and i met a woman who was born this way] and in some cases they wait to see if one sex leans more to another”
    “told me she was born with both genitalia and that she grew up with them until she was 12, and she started her menstrual and thats why they chose her female side…but in ways she had some of the qualities of male sex too”
    What do you mean, being born with both sexes? There are people who have ovotestes (a few thousand cases ever documented IIRC), who are usually assigned as male and usually look male; there are people who have XY chromosomes but cannot process testosterone, so they are assigned as female, but I don’t know if being “born with both sexes” is the correct term for it.
    In cases of ambiguous genitalia, an infant’s genitalia doesn’t “look” right by medical standards, but most of those people are surgically assigned a sex (usually female) at birth. I think there are a few cases where ambiguous genitalia develops in puberty, but it’s most common for it to be assigned at birth.
    I hope I don’t come off as being mean and I don’t doubt that you’re telling the truth, but there are a lot of incorrect perceptions about intersex that I wanted to clear up.
    I won’t derail or hog any more of Heart’s bandwidth, so if you want to correspond more about this, feel free to contact me.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 10, 2007, 4:39 pm
  45. Hey, Tasha, more history/context might be helpful in understanding what Uppity said. I don’t think her comment was so much in response to anything you’ve written as it had to do with some other issues around the use of the word “womyn” and derivations of the word.

    The word “womyn” was used by lesbian separatism/radical feminism initially back in the 70s, for reasons similar to the ones you’ve given for choosing that spelling. I’ve noticed anarchafeminists using this spelling as well, and I think it’s great! I think by now many women have seen these spellings and find them appealing without really knowing where they originated.

    A problem in the lesbian separatist/lesbian feminist community has been that at various times, women using those alternative spellings have been mocked for it, ridiculed and despised for it, and not just for the spellings but for changing their names to names they chose, and for just being women and lesbians. In other words, off and on there has been a lot of shaming of women who have used these spellings which was done for sexist and lesbophobic reasons, quite often by men and transgendered persons. Very hurtful.

    When it became apparent that the shaming and harrassment wouldn’t keep women from using those spellings, the tactics changed and the spellings began to be used by transgendered persons, i.e., “transwomyn,” which is, again, colonizing, in that the reason for the spellings in the first place for women who adopted them was to reject the old spellings’ male connotations and history. So it’s like a tug of war, it’s a power struggle: womyn name ourselves, men or transgendered persons harrass us, then when that doesn’t intimidate us, they attempt to steal our spellings and self-definitions.

    This is a safe space on the internet to discuss these issues where almost no other place is safe. Anywhere else womyn talk about this, we are going to be trolled to some degree. So I think Uppity was mainly seizing the moment to talk about something that is really troubling that we don’t get to talk about very often.

    As to being out of place, I am not sure exactly what you mean, but just feel like saying that Women’s Space/The Margins always draws women who feel they are out of place, or who really are out of place in various ways. I always like to remind women that one characteristic of brilliant women is, they always feel like they are out of place. (There is research which establishes this. :)) We are quite the diverse group in here, from really different backgrounds and in really different places in our lives. I’ve been married three times, and have 11 kids and four grandkids, was a radical fundamentalist, and reinvented my politics even more radically after I was excommunicated. Some of the women here have lived all of their lives as lesbian separatists. It doesn’t matter, though, you know? We still share so much in common as women.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 10, 2007, 5:29 pm
  46. Hey, Littorall Mermaid, I keep thinking about what you said above:

    For example I’m Asian-American and if Asian immigrants in the US wanted an “Asian immigrant” space, I wouldn’t automatically think that they are bigots or denying that I’m Asian for not inviting me.

    I was mulling over the idea of transgendered persons as “immigrants” so far as gender goes. It’s an interesting exercise to think in those terms. One thought I had is, people recognize they can’t just immigrate because they decide to; they realize they are going to have to investigate the laws, seek the approval of the country they want to go to, and so on. When it comes to women, though, there are no comparable considerations. We are told what’s going to happen and if we raise any objections or even want to discuss it, that makes us “phobic.” There is *such* disrespect for female persons!

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 10, 2007, 5:42 pm
  47. Heart,

    you know i didn’t even think of any of that when i typed ‘transgender womyn’, its just such a habit for me to use womyn,

    i do deliberately [and probably shouldn’t do this and i’ll explain why] sometimes use wom’e’n,

    but thats usually when i am confronting pro-patriarchial though they claim feminism in the far left [yea i admit i’m sort of a smart ass that way but there’s a history there in that confrontation in the far left as far as i’m at…though i have been working on not being so sarcastic on some issues…but— na thats bull, yea i am still sarcastic when i confront the wom’e’n in the far left [wom’e’n referring to women who side in with the men against womyn on issues especially issues that are extremely hurtful to womyn] figure i need to be honest with myself there…i have thought about not being so confrontational on some issues but i get so angry at some of the ‘planned policies’ and its because if these people whom i know ever get into power we’ve been had, seriously…[i’m referring to pro-Stalinists types, pro-Fascists and pro-Nationalist Fascists types here/including pro-or apologetic Religious fascist types]

    so yea to them, i’ve deliberately used ‘wom’e’n’, i’m militant on addressing the pro-misogynist policies and i’m nasty some times…but i tried to be like, polite and professional to revolutionaries and thats like, giving someone about to shoot you with a gun, the bullets to shoot you with…

    but i wasn’t aware of the depth of hostility of some transgenders [should i say ‘political transgender women’??] to lesbians, etc….

    i have read the hostilities in lesbian communties to bi-sexuals AND vice-versa… [and see both sides and concur with some on one and concur with some on the other, and YES I DO SEE HOW MEN HAVE INFILTRATED THIS AS A MEANS OF ENCROACHING…

    and YES i can see this to in what lesbians are saying in regards to transgenders encroaching and YES i concur with them on that…

    but wasn’t aware it was to this extreme…

    you know they [the far left] still give me hell because i use womyn, and it was after that, like about six months, i typed up womyn in google and i did read some about the history of the use of,

    it was just my use of was like so different, i chose Y to represent the vagina, lol…

    i used to use it as womYn.

    that Really pissed off the men….
    😉 i’m terrible, lol.

    i might go back to using womYn, what the hell…

    peace,

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 6:06 pm
  48. correction, lol, it wasn’t just using Y to represent vagina,

    it was in reference to womyn defining Political AUTONOMY in the far left, OUT FROM THE DICTATES OF MARX, LENIN, MAO, CHE, TROTSKY, WHO WERE ALL MEN,

    WHO ALL DEFINED WHAT THE SOCIALIST OR COMMUNIST WOMAN WOULD BE OR NOT BE,

    and the more i studied the more pissed i got, and i even started a forum for womyn in the far left, to confront this…
    and i do believe it was Marx’s daughter [one of them] that wrote “The Women Question” it wasn’t Marx, but he got the credit for it, he wrote with Engels the Origin of the family,

    i was asked to write for the Marxist Archives because i raised so much hell about so many of the far left womyn who’d been buried in forgetfulness, but then, get this,

    after i said i would, it was like, oh now you have to go by all these ‘scientific materialist’ rules and blah blah blah

    and i was like forget that shit, i’ll just write what i want…

    and thats what i do, and the more i do the more i revolt against even the English language…i will never get a job in activism for any ‘organization’, thats for sure.

    but its been mostly men who try to dictate to me, how to write, talk, say, etc…and i see that So much in academia and in the professional careers and even in womyn’s magazines that deal with careers, etc….

    i do think so much of it though ties in to defining who i am due to having lived under forced constructs/deconstructs that were violent and extremely mental, as i said on why i relate to Slyvia Plathe’s poem “Daddy” [though i just realized it of late] and why i always identified with the victims/survivors [what i’ve read/seen in films, etc] is because i was that ‘dirty jew’ when i was a child…

    [no i’m not Jewish, i’m referring to being picked apart like a frog in a science lab and put together and picked apart again, and in one period under religion and in another, under the symbolism of Venus so yea…]

    maybe thats why i sort of understand the frustration of transgenders and why i look to the marginalized, outside of all groups,

    which can be a very loner existence. [it has its downsides…very much so, that being split, pole it the center, what i would call, the ‘impaling by something invisible but its there, and it has the same effects’.]

    hmmmm, will have to ponder on this now

    peace,

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 6:21 pm
  49. From a Bay Times review of Frameline’s decision to cancel the showing of The Gendercator which I think really goes to who has the power in this scenario, in progressive politics, in liberal politics, and between female persons and male persons right now:

    Note: There is a newd dewd at this link so not safe for work and forewarned is forearmed, although it’s just his backside, not his front side.)

    As someone who has “kvelled”* over the wonders of the San Francisco Lesbian and Gay Film Festival for some 20-odd years, often in print, I approach this article with a great deal of trepidation. I am an itty bitty titty bit annoyed. Why? you may ask. …

    I really feel quite ambivalent about Frameline and the festival this year. For the first time in the all of the festival’s history, the programmers have chosen to screen a film, invited the film, described it in the catalog and then, because of outside pressure, and the festival has decide to yank what five minutes before they were calling art. What is going on? Word is that this film, GENDERCATOR, by Catherine Crouch, is transphobic. With 230 feature and short films in this festival, one 20 minute science fiction satire cannot be shown to our community because we are deemed to be unable to read a film’s point of view and unable to discern a film director’s bias, for better or for worse.

    Reading the festival catalog, I wonder whether Board President Linda Harrison and Managing Director Matt Westendorf want to retract their message to festival goers, “Frameline has always represented voices that have been silenced, ignored or discounted. We will continue to expand this commitment with innovative programs and a dedication to showcasing the wonderful diversity of our community.”

    Curiosity just might kill the cat. Whoever books Catherine Crouch’s short film will make a killing. I see the marketing copy now. CENSORED IN SAN FRANCISCO!!!!!

    I betcha the Israeli producers of The Bubble (June 18, Castro) wishes their film was pulled. The film by Eyton Fox is being called a modern day queer Romeo and Juliet. It features a Palestinian gay man (the only Palestinian gay man in the film) who by the end of the film decides to become a suicide bomber. To date, I have not heard that the Arab American LGBT community has asked Frameline to pull this year’s “Centerpiece” film because it is anti-Arab-American. Hmmm, maybe they should.

    So freaking true.

    Heart

    Posted by Heart | June 10, 2007, 6:45 pm
  50. just thought of something,

    that term ‘transphobe’,

    its the same damn thing misogynists use when they say ‘Islamophobe’, to censur any critique of Islam, or of Political Islam or of the abuses to womyn under the umbrella of Islam especially…[and the basis for the increase in both censureship AND extremist demonizing due to lack of open space which of course the political bigots just prey on [on both sides],

    and why this is a danger in Europe right now [EU ruling] etc is that it plays in the hands of ‘agenda terrorists’,

    and it sounds like what some of the political transgenders are doing…

    reversing ‘marginalization, that minority status’ as a means, of using it not to be accepted but to ‘dominate’ by infiltration, silencing of critics or questionares, [which truly does them more of a injustice in several ways],

    i know i want to see Gendercator now, any chance it will be shown on one of the cable channels? It sounds like a genius of a movie, i would like to see it because from what i have read thus far,

    though it may be science fiction it does relay the dangers in scientific ‘elitist — social engineering of gender which YES has been discussed and NOT ONLY THAT,

    IS DONE IN IRAN. The so called ‘cure’ for lesbianism,

    so this is a very important issue for womyn’s rights on a global scale…in other words, when governments force choice in gender, to ‘fit’ into some idealization of a despot or regime, and it is Orwellian and it Is fascist to the core.

    Which leaves me to question [and i have been questioning the increase in ‘liberal fascism, meaning that pc fascism under the guise of ‘tolerance’, well tolerance defined by Who? by those ‘elites in power’ which are majority of ‘MEN’?]

    why i say, PC is SO CONTROLLED BY MEN, seriously if you look at the history and use of, how its used to ‘control’ subcultures, counter-revolutionaries and hey, not every tenant of philosophy of counter revolutionary is bad…there is a bit of truth in all sides.

    or is it, like some fascists do, they jump on the backs of rights struggles or self-determination struggles, like monkeys, and manipulate them for their agendas, which in nature are completely contrary to the struggle…?

    hmmm, sounds to me like Gendercator is a bit of a Genius work there.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 10, 2007, 7:28 pm
  51. Thanks for supporting BITCH. I feel strongly about this issue, and I think it was summed up great with the quote ‘being pro-womyn is not anti-trans’.

    I don’t know of many women-only spaces that aren’t trans-inclusive anymore. My feminist friend often puts on woman-born/Lesbian events and gets loads of hassle for being transphobic. When we try to organise Reclaim The Night marches in Britain, we get attacked by transpeople for being exclusive and heirarchical about our definition of a woman. The fact that Reclaim the Night is traditionally a women-only march against rape, is disrespected. My Lesbian friend once requested to speak to a Lesbian counsellor, and actually got a transwoman, which she was taken aback by and had to request someone else. ‘Transphobic’ is a harsh accusation that backs you against a wall- just for supporting born female spaces. We get told that we are creating a heirarchy about what is the definition of a woman. But we as Lesbians, as women-loving-women, can’t define our own spaces. We get told that being born with a female body doesn’t matter… Infact, this criticism of BITCH is anti-Lesbian. It is denying lesbianity as a sexuality as females loving females. Also, it seems ridiculous that over half of the world’s population are born female, but we can’t organise around and create spaces for this category without criticism.

    In my experience, the conflict over women-only spaces has come from trans-men and non-gender specific female born people. Why aren’t trans-men trying to challenge born male spaces..? It always seems to be female born spaces.

    Posted by charliegrrl | June 10, 2007, 8:18 pm
  52. Heart at 46: “One thought I had is, people recognize they can’t just immigrate because they decide to; they realize they are going to have to investigate the laws, seek the approval of the country they want to go to, and so on. When it comes to women, though, there are no comparable considerations.”
    I guess that trans people do have doctors and psychologists as their gatekeepers (like have x years of therapy before taking hormones or getting SRS, or something like that). But I think that’s an interesting analogy, though I’m not sure who the women gatekeepers would be.
    Sometimes I’ve heard transwomen say that they feel “like women” and I wonder, I’m a woman born woman, but do I feel that way to? And what happens if I don’t?

    Tasha at 51: “its the same damn thing misogynists use when they say ‘Islamophobe’, to censur any critique of Islam, or of Political Islam or of the abuses to womyn under the umbrella of Islam especially”
    I’m a radical feminist and I’ve used the term “Islamophobe” before. In the US at least (and I realize it may be different in other countries), a lot of people who criticize Islam are simply racist against people from Africa, South Asia or the Middle East. For the most part, they support/don’t care about about misogynistic practices in Western religions and are not friends of women or feminists.
    Furthermore, a lot of the criticism of Islam in the media is about the practice of wearing modest clothing – criticism that scapegoats women (as pointed out in the book “Murder in Amsterdam”). I don’t want to scrutinize or condemn women, I’d rather call out MEN who perpetuate misogynist practices.
    (eek, got off topic again)

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 10, 2007, 10:16 pm
  53. ***Why aren’t trans-men trying to challenge born male spaces..? It always seems to be female born spaces.***

    Reminds me of something I read long ago in The Transsexual Empire, by the much maligned Jan Raymond. She did open ended interviews with trans women and men and thought that both groups tend to place (born) men on a pedestal. Maybe that’s it – the (born) men are too damn sacred up on their pedestals to challenge their men-only spaces, but women? – hell, go for it.

    Posted by Branjor | June 10, 2007, 10:19 pm
  54. For those not aware, Bayard Rustin was a gay, black man who worked with MLK Jr. on civil rights. He’s probably most famously known for being the primary organizer for the March on Washington where MLK Jr. spoke to thousands.
    There is a Bayard Rustin book out of his collected writings entitled <a href=”http://www.amazon.com/Time-Two-Crosses-Collected-Writings/dp/1573441740/ref=sr_1_1/103-8460026-9731853?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1181515741&sr=8-1″ rel=”nofollow”>Time On Two Crosses</a>. In the piece in the book entitled <em>From Montgomery to Stonewall</em>, Rustin wrote:
    <blockquote>[T]he job of the gay community is not to deal with extremists who would castigate us or put us on an island and drop an H-bomb on us. The fact of the matter is that there is a small percentage of people in America who understand the true nature of the homosexual community. There is another small percentage who will never understand us. Our job is not to get those people who dislike us to love us. Nor was our aim in the civil rights movement to get prejudiced white people to love us. <strong>Our aim was to try to create the kind of America, legislatively, morally, and psychologically, such that even though some whites continued to hate us, they could not openly manifest that hate. That’s our job today: to control the extent to which people can publicly manifest antigay sentiment.</strong></blockquote>
    There is also a sociological “definition of a situation,” which states:
    <blockquote>If a situation is perceived as real, it is real in its consequences.</blockquote>
    Given the circumstances of the “WBW only” policy of the MWMF, transpeople can successfully argue that a <em>pro-womyn</em> event is an <em>anti-transgender</em> event because the concept of <em>segregation</em> can be applied as a consequence of having pro-WBW events — and <em>segregation</em> is a civil rights buzz word. And, <em>segregation</em> can easily be parried into the concept of <em>discrimination</em> and <em>inequality</em> — the concept of “separate-but-equal” is a non-starter for most people these days.
    What’s happened to Bitch may be functional censorship. It may be particularly unfair as Bitch’s partner is Daniela Sea [who played Max, a female-to-male transgendered person on the L Word, and uses the pronoun “ze” to refer to gender-ambiguous persons (like hirself)].
    That said, transpeople are using what tools they have to <em>to control the extent to which people can publicly manifest</em> [perceived anti-trans] <em>sentiment</em>.
    What tools would lesbians and other self-identified womyn use to deal with perceived segregation and discrimination against lesbians and other self-identified womyn? My guess would be the tools would be similar to the ones the transcommunity is using against Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival indirectly in their inflicting of consequences against Bitch and other performers who’ve played that festival.
    Right or wrong, WBW have a hard sell ahead. The transcommunity has the narrative that’s easy to understand, and is an easier sell to the broader, trans-positive, LGBT community.

    Posted by Autumn Sandeen | June 11, 2007, 12:10 am
  55. She did open ended interviews with trans women and men and thought that both groups tend to place (born) men on a pedestal. Maybe that’s it – the (born) men are too damn sacred up on their pedestals to challenge their men-only spaces, but women? – hell, go for it.

    Another example of women getting shit on because of the position they are already in by the patriachy.

    Why fight the power when it is easier to fight the powerless. Seems cowardly.

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 11, 2007, 12:34 am
  56. Segregation, discrimination, inequality – bull. All of those concepts depend on seeing women (the female ones) as analogous to white people, while male transwomen are seen as analogous to black people. That’s an old argument we’ve all heard before and has been thoroughly debunked. The analogies WBW=white people and transwomen=black people just do not hold up.

    Posted by Branjor | June 11, 2007, 12:43 am
  57. Branjor is right, Autumn Sandeen. Your theory turns on this idea that “transwomen” — who may have lived most of their lives as privileged white males, who may be affluent and societally powerful professionals — can be compared with pre-Civil Rights-era blackpeople, who were oppressed across the board, 100 percent, by a white supremacist culture, and that lesbians can be compared with that white supremacist culture.

    That’s foolishness.

    I don’t think lesbians have a hard sell at all. I think we won in the high court in Canada and if it comes to the test, I think we’ll win in the high courts here. I think there are a whole lot of people who are fairly aghast at the dumb stunts some members of the transgender community have pulled recently.

    Meanwhile, don’t presume, as a white privileged person yourself, to instruct anybody as to Bayard Rustin or to compare your situation with his. That’s offensive and it’s not going to fly here.

    What tools would lesbians and other self-identified womyn use to deal with perceived segregation and discrimination against lesbians and other self-identified womyn? My guess would be the tools would be similar to the ones the transcommunity is using against Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival indirectly in their inflicting of consequences against Bitch and other performers who’ve played that festival.

    There is no such thing as a “self-identified womyn.”

    There are women. We’re it. We’ll decide how we spell the word “woman.” You may back off. Thanks.

    There is no “perceived” segregation with respect to us. There is factual segregation with respect to us. As women, we are a marginalized caste under white, male heterosupremacy– economically, socially, by every and any measure. The tools we have used and wll continue to use to fight our own oppression and marginalization are never the kind of bullshit strong-arm censorship tactics transpersons used with Frameline or with Bitch. We don’t even advocate for censorship with respect to misogynist pornography. The tools we will use are the tools and strategies of feminism which we have been perfecting now for many years and which have held us in good stead and have revolutionized this country and many other countries.

    I don’t think we have a hard sell at all. I think, again, that a certain number of very short-sighted transpersons have been shooting themselves in the foot lately and it’s about to backfire big time.

    I would ask you not to use the term “WBW” here or “women born women”, or any of the other bullying language you’ve used in your comments here, but I don’t have to do that because I’m going to moderate everything you attempt to add to this thread from here on out.

    And no, that’s not censorship. Clobbering Frameline about the head and neck with intimdation and lies such that they pull the Gendercator is censorship. Intimidating lesbians in Boston so that they cancel Bitch’s performance is censorship. My moderating your comments to my blog is not. Go post to your own blog. Thanks.

    One thing though. That your comments went through and didn’t go into moderation tells me you’ve commented unimpeded here before.

    Like I say, I am *way* too fair for my own good or the good of women. Women, in general, are way too fair, which is why we have the situation we have right now. At some point, it’s just enough.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 2:04 am
  58. litterolmermaid,

    Islamophobe is a term used here in the United States against womyn’s rights activists by men in the left, nationalists groups to shut womyn up too,

    as for conservative clothing, its one thing for a woman to choose how to dress,

    quite another when they are shot in the face [Pakastan] for refusing to wear a veil, threatened to have neck cut off ear to ear [recent in Gaza Stip, Palestine, womyn are losing their rights right now faster than you and I can blink an eye], womyn having smileys [cuts across their cheed] in Amsterdam for refusing to wear veil in Western country that is not ruled by Islam [yet, give it five years],
    womyn getting the crap beat out of them for god forbid a wisp of hair showing [right now in Iran],

    but DARE bring this up, or DARE bring up the FACT,

    that in the United States, in New York, in other cities where there is are communities of Muslims where the Imans preach the sanctity of Wife Beating…young girls are forced to marry against their wills to old men, young girls are still having FGMs performed, and forced sex slavery/domestic slavery is still going on With IMPUNITY…

    Dare to bring That up to the Nationalist MISOGYNISTS DICKS in the immigrations rights movements, and the first thing they scream is

    Islamophobe and Racist,

    and they use the FACT that the Christian Right has done these same things with Impunity, some of the segments in Mormonism right in Utah [and the government does nothing]

    AND IF ANY ARE IN TOTAL SUPPORT OF THE RELIGIOUS DOGS,

    ITS THE RIGHT, AND YEA, THOSE RACISTS….

    its all ‘spin’ and the gist of it, the labels,

    is to shut up, Human Rights Advocates and Womyn’s Rights Advocates.

    and dressing conservative….well NUNS get RAPED,

    HOW CONSERATIVE CAN A WOMAN DRESS? THE PRISONS IN PAKASTAN ARE FULL,

    OF COVERED WOMYN IN PURDA, WHO’VE BEEN RAPED.

    if Men can’t control their ‘impulse’ by golly then MAYBE THEY SHOULD CUT OUT THEIR EYES,

    rather than putting the blame on how womyn dress. and maybe what is needed is some womyn to assist these poor poor men who just can’t control themselves if they see a bare woman’s leg,

    i for one am Sick of men, getting by with rape with total impunity, WHILE WOMYN ARE POLICED WORLDWIDE IN HOW THEY DRESS…..

    SCREW THAT. LET THE MEN WEAR THE PURDAS, MOST OF THEM WOULD LOOK BETTER IF THEY DID.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 3:12 am
  59. “But we as Lesbians, as women-loving-women, can’t define our own spaces. We get told that being born with a female body doesn’t matter… In fact, this criticism of BITCH is anti-Lesbian.”

    I agree, charliegrrl, but I would add from my own perspective as a het/bi (don’t know for sure) woman-loving feminist woman that it is anti-woman in general.

    How dare anyone purporting to be an ally define our spaces for us?! Heart is right that we are trying to be way too fair if we give up our few precious places of refuge from male domination.

    Leave us alone for once!!

    Posted by roamaround | June 11, 2007, 3:22 am
  60. Branjor,

    good point, and i will add, though the far left claims to be GLBTS,

    you don’t see any transgenders fighting for rights in those movements…and the men, hate them, as much as they hate womyn, thats one of the issues that irk men, NOT JUST WHITE MEN,

    so yea, why don’t the trans challenge the all boys clubs?

    good question

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 3:26 am
  61. Hey, lol,

    i just got email from someone in the left party i used to work with, it seems the low rate of womyn has become a ‘problem’,
    and they are now going to revamp efforts to recruit womyn, and he asked me for suggestions…

    someone wrote something on here, I think it was you Heart, about the platforms never addressing male entitlements…

    you put it in a way that just boom, nailed it…i told him they need to take some gender studies and woman identified feminist studies…

    it will be interesting to see what kind of response i get if i get any, this is not good news though, it causes me some concern, due to the uniting of some of the more pro-Chavez parties [and most of the far left is very pro-Chavez and along those lines of paternalist male dominion] and they will be targeting womyn of color and low income womyn especially…

    as many womyn have grown weary of the democratic party.

    What are your thoughts on this….?

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 4:30 am
  62. Posted by Sam over at Genderberg. Add your name to this letter and send it along to Frameline:

    I met Max Dashu at the Against Patriarchy conference when I gave the antiporn slide show presentation.

    You can send this letter with your name added at the end to Frameline: boxoffice@frameline.org and info@frameline.org

    -sam

    We protest frameline consorship!
    June 7, 2007

    Dear Michael Lumpkin & Jennifer Morris,

    We are writing to protest Frameline’s recent decision to pull the short science fiction film The Gendercator by lesbian filmmaker Catherine Crouch from your June 15th program of films. We think that it is an outrage that Frameline has chosen censorship over dialogue. This action has set a very dangerous and destructive precedent for the LGBT community. We understand that never in its 31 year history has Frameline’s San Francisco LGBT International Film Festival pulled a film after its acceptance.

    We are aware that this decision was made under pressure because of its purported “transphobic” content. We are especially concerned that these charges of transphobia have resulted in censorship of this lesbian film, without a clear definition of what constitutes transphobia, and after other films many would consider racist and/or misogynist have passed without comment in previous years.

    We have not seen the movie, but we strongly object to its being ruled out of bounds in advance. We want and deserve the opportunity to see it and judge for ourselves. Only then can there be real and productive community dialogue regarding an issue that has been thus far loosely defined. Pulling a film in this manner is silencing! And it violates the principles set out in the festival’s own catalog, which says that “Frameline has always represented voices that have been silenced, ignored, or discounted.”

    A lesbian voice is being silenced here. In the current climate of fear, we find it necessary to state that critiquing or asking questions about issues affecting our communities should not be confused with judgment or condemnation or, in this case, “transphobia.”

    Many have complained about the lack of lesbian content in the festival, and Frameline has chosen to silence one of the few voices. We think the LGBT community has been done a disservice. We, the undersigned stand for human dignity, rights, and freedom of expression for all.

    We call for the film’s reinstatement and inclusion in the festival, giving people an opportunity to judge for themselves, and to respond and critique via the methods that Frameline has used in the past. And finally, we call for Frameline to offer a public apology to the filmmaker, Catherine Crouch.

    Sincerely,

    Lenn Keller, filmmaker. Max Dashu, historian. Joey Brite, designer.
    Martha Shelley, writer, GLF 1969
    _________________

    I mean, really. Why have films many have considered racist, and I am absolutely positive films with misogynist content, been shown by Frameline? The heck.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 4:52 am
  63. “Do you know of any male born male only or predominately male born male only spaces that transsexuals have actively focused on to infiltrate/invade?”

    i blogged about transmen being barred from a gay male club here:
    http://transadvocate.com/nexy/2007/05/25/parallel-universe/

    Posted by nexyjo | June 11, 2007, 5:26 am
  64. Tasha –
    “as for conservative clothing, its one thing for a woman to choose how to dress,
    quite another when they are shot in the face [Pakastan] for refusing to wear a veil, threatened to have neck cut off ear to ear [recent in Gaza Stip, Palestine, womyn are losing their rights right now faster than you and I can blink an eye], womyn having smileys [cuts across their cheed] in Amsterdam for refusing to wear veil in Western country that is not ruled by Islam [yet, give it five years],
    womyn getting the crap beat out of them for god forbid a wisp of hair showing [right now in Iran]”
    I am a feminist and I don’t support coercion, whether via social norms or enforcement, of women wrt conservative clothing.
    However, the problem I see is that it’s *women* wearing the conservative clothing who are scapegoated in the media and a veiled *woman* or a woman in a niqab/burqa is seen as evil symbol of Islam taking over the world. When the image of a woman is a symbol of evil, then we’re ignoring the *men* who are enforcing the dress code.

    “that in the United States, in New York, in other cities where there is are communities of Muslims where the Imans preach the sanctity of Wife Beating…young girls are forced to marry against their wills to old men, young girls are still having FGMs performed, and forced sex slavery/domestic slavery is still going on With IMPUNITY…”
    I also don’t support scapegoating Islam because extremely evil misogyny occurs in all cultures and all religions. Young girls in splinter Mormon groups in the US southwest are forced to marry their middle-aged uncles. Sex slavery and domestic slavery are depressingly common everywhere in the world.
    And in the US (and in Europe), there is a lot of racist hatred against nonwhite immigrants. When I (and I am nonwhite, great-granddaughter of immigrants from a group that was scapegoated in the early 20th century) hear the world “Eurabia” that is to me racist hatemongering about a falling white birth rate.
    The most vocal critics of Islam in the US (and I realize it’s different in other parts of the world) are right-wing and racist. They are not friends of feminists or women at all. They criticize misogyny in Islam because they hate Islam, not because they hate misogyny.

    To make a long post short, I don’t argue that some Muslim men commit horrible acts of misogynist violence against women and that it needs to end. But I’m not going to criticize only Muslims when other religions and ethnic groups also commit horrible acts of misogynist violence and I’m not going to jump on a bandwagon with racists.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 11, 2007, 5:39 am
  65. Tasha –
    I hope I haven’t sounded excessively argumentative, we probably agree on most things anyway. I’ll try to stop hogging Heart’s bandwidth and again, feel free to contact me if you want to discuss this more🙂

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 11, 2007, 5:43 am
  66. Foks, I’m trying to be neutral. I’m gave you a diversity model model for looking at the issue vice a femminism model. I wasn’t advocating the model in the post, I was expressing it.
    As for the black/white womyn/transwomen model being debunked, did Bitch get cancelled or not? Was it becasuse transpeople and their allies argued their diversity model more sucessfully than dykes and their allies argue for womyn’s spaces?
    Geez, and did you notice what I bolded in my post? It was the tactics and strategy Bayard Rustin advocated. He said:
    “Our aim was to try to create the kind of America, legislatively, morally, and psychologically, such that even though some whites continued to hate us, they could not openly manifest that hate. That’s our job today: to control the extent to which people can publicly manifest antigay sentiment.”
    The “situation” is being defined as Woymn-Born-Womyn spaces are “perceived” as hateful because the policy is being “percieved” as segregationist and discriminatory, and the resulting “consequence” of the “situation” was that Bitch was cancelled.
    That’s what I was pointing out.
    If you want MWMF to remain a womyn-born-womyn event and not diversify who is welcome at the event, then you have to be able to explain to folk in plain English why not welcoming transwomen at certain events isn’t segragationis and discriminatory — how it isn’t a separate-but-equal treatment of transwomen.
    My point was that’s a hard sell. Bitch being sacked is the proof it’s a hard sell. Telling me that the view doesn’t have parallels to racial discrimination doesn’t mean that the “it isn’t discrimination” message has been communicated effectively to the greater LGBT community.
    And, for the record, everyone who is aware of and points out the opposition’s viewpoint isn’t the opposition.

    Posted by Autumn Sandeen | June 11, 2007, 5:51 am
  67. littoralmermaid said way up there somewhere:
    “Sometimes I’ve heard transwomen say that they feel “like women” and I wonder, I’m a woman born woman, but do I feel that way to? And what happens if I don’t?”

    So true, and not only that, but what does “feeling like a woman” even MEAN? I sure as hell can’t answer that, despite being one, and I suspect if you pressed 100 women to come up with an answer you’d get 100 different replies.

    /Back to lurking

    Posted by Melissa | June 11, 2007, 8:54 am
  68. littoralmaid said:
    ***“Sometimes I’ve heard transwomen say that they feel “like women” and I wonder, I’m a woman born woman, but do I feel that way to? And what happens if I don’t?”***

    Then you’re only a “self-identified womyn”.

    HAHAHAHAHA!

    Posted by Branjor | June 11, 2007, 12:32 pm
  69. As for the black/white womyn/transwomen model being debunked, did Bitch get cancelled or not? Was it becasuse transpeople and their allies argued their diversity model more sucessfully than dykes and their allies argue for womyn’s spaces?

    Autumn Sandeen, mustering what remains of my remaining patience here, the reason Bitch got canceled, the reason the Gendercator showing got canceled, the reason people supported Kimberly Nixon, is because the politics of the transpersons involved in these anti-woman, anti-feminist causes and actions, and their allies — who are, in general, the “sex positive,” pro-pornography, pro-SM, “queer,” meaning, G–supposedly, but hell no, “L” — BTQRSTUVWXZY-anything-I-can-use-to-make-me-queer-and-hip-even-if-I’m-het-and-traditional,” benefits MEN.

    Because the politics benefit MEN. Because it benefits people born MALE.

    You know, men. Males. Those people with power in this culture.

    There is NOTHING — absolutely NOTHING — about lesbianism which benefits men or those born male. Lesbians are of no use to, neither of interest, to men. Lesbian issues are, therefore, of no concern to men or the male-born, I don’t care if the men involved identify as Left, Right, Center, Conservative, Liberal, Republican, Democrat, Green, Progressive, gay, het, I don’t care who they are. Lesbian issues and the lives of lesbians are at the bottom of their list priority-wise.

    Why? Because there is nothing in it for men.

    Issues central to the liberation of women — the elimination of pornography, ALL of it, but especially racist, misogynist pornography, the elimination of prostitution, the end of women-as-a-sex class, the rights of lesbians: these are ANATHEMA to almost all men, in all of the groups I listed.

    Not only are they anathema — because ending these means the actual, real, liberation and humanization of people born female. WOMEN — these are things men WANT. They want women spread open, naked, smiling and available to physically or metaphorically fucked anytime anyplace. They want women het, married, and serving THEM. They want women prostituted, pornified, and loving SM. Because this ensures the continuation of male dominance in the world.

    This means there has been a BACKLASH against any sort of actual, effective, real feminist activism — as opposed to the fun kind of feminism which all men can really get behind — which has been ongoing for decades now and with it ongoing smear campaigns against actual feminism, i.e., what would actually humanize and liberate females.

    Where have you been?

    And tHIS is the reason transgender activists have support and lesbians don’t. It isn’t because we don’t have or can’t make the arguments. It is because this type of transgender politics benefits MEN and benefits those born MALE.

    It is because our lives, our arguments and the ultimate actual — not pretend — humanization and liberation of women is not something which benefits MALES. Whereas transgender issues, Gay issues, Bi issues, Queer issues, all the other letter issues, pro-SM, pro-porn, pro-prostitution, pro-marriage: these DO benefit men. Men LIKE what benefits them especially when what benefits them continues to OPPRESS WOMEN and ensures their continued spot at the top of the hierarchy which sexism IS.

    So turn the pointy-finger around and point it elsewhere, not at us. We are not responsible for the fact that the backlash against feminism — male driven, leftist driven, progressive driven, and yes, transgender and queer driven — has been so successful lesbian and women’s issues have sunk to the goddamn bottom, including with a buttload of people who actually think they are “feminists.” MEN are responsible for this.

    How are we going to turn that around?

    We will. Trust me.

    And we ARE. Right here. Right now.

    And lots of places.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 1:29 pm
  70. Regarding which group is under attack, the brunt of forced colonization, the recipients of cooption of their words, culture, traditions and her-story, that group is overwhelmingly lesbians/dykes. This same group which is already marginalized and one-step removed from being considered ‘normal’ females. The same group, lesbians and dykes who have worked for many, many decades for change, for our rights as a collective, for our existence to be honored, respected and otherwise acknowledged as having full agency.

    For many years lesbians have voiced concern, tried to hold conversations to raise awareness that the transgender movement is attacking us and the result is that we have been more severely attacked and bullied for any effort to bring this to light. For many, many years lesbians/dykes have been saying that we are under attack and we are ignored, as if not important, our concerns and our voicing a desire to have this stop falling on deaf ears and even reversed upon us and used against us. The trans activists call any female who disagrees with the male-based program of inclusion, cooption, colonization ‘trans-phobic!!’ and works to silence any female who may declare herself a full human with the right to gather and determine in whose company she gathers.

    Who is attacking this group, the lesbians and dykes? The transgender movement with trans activists leading the transgender flag right into our intimate and public events. That’s who. The Trans activist have joined in on further removing any right the those born female, lesbians and dykes have etched out in society, joined in with the patriarchy, with males, with men, with a male based power structure and it’s established record of social conditioning, with an established record of, as a male based establishment, male aggression and bullying against females, dykes, lesbians to effect a male-based domination, power structure and control over those born female.

    And what happened at Frameline, at the Boston Dyke March, using just two examples (there are many)? Who was behind any and all of these actions, bullying, silencing, suppression of females’ lived realities, female voices, rights to gather, assemble and other wise be respected, honored and valued?

    A group using male based tactics was behind all of that and more. They call themselves the transgender movement and trans activists. That’s who.

    Can you hear me now?

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 11, 2007, 1:55 pm
  71. Just like the continuing exist of Michfest is of no benefit to, or interest to, men.
    In fact it annoys the fuck out of them that there is one goddamn venue on the face of the earth to which there is NO MALE ACCESS.

    I mean, they can access Take Back the Night, no prob. They can access the Vagina Monologues. They can access Dyke Marches, take them over and run out the lesbians.

    But Michigan remaining woman-only space flies in the face of male (and those who support males) theory that the world is men’s oyster, that it belongs to men and should belong to men. Who do these bitches think they are, making a boundary and telling men not to step across? What, they think they’re equal or something? They think they deserve something, like their own spaces, which men have had for millennia by the by?

    That’s why Michfest is the watershed it is. That’s why it’s not “just” about a music festival. Among other reasons.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 1:57 pm
  72. Female power is generated in female-only spaces. Female-only spaces were the genesis of the Women’s Liberation Movement that erupted in the late 60’s and early 70’s. Female-only spaces that were created out of female *desire*, and female initiative. Not female ghetto-spaces into which we were driven. Spaces that were *not* under male-control.

    When thousands of such spaces start springing up again, all over the world, we’ll be back on the road to power (not “empowerment”.)

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 11, 2007, 2:42 pm
  73. Radical feminists don’t care what other people think of our views. If we did, considering all the hate we get even from other feminists, we probably wouldn’t be radical feminists.

    And wrt segregation, segregation was state-enforced by the power-holding class over every aspect of the oppressed class’s lives. My family is not black or from the South, but I am Japanese-American on both sides. I wouldn’t compare the way that whites barred Japanese-Americans from buying land or locked us up in relocation camps without trial to transwomen not being invited to one festival.

    I think it’s probably best for the purposes of this post to leave our feelings on trans aside. Some of us are pro-trans, some of us are anti-trans. But that’s not what it’s about at all. It’s about whether women have a right to establish and maintain our own spaces. (Yes, I know that trans people are discriminated against de jure/de facto, but most of that is at the hands of homophobic, transphobic religious conservatives in the government, not radical feminists/lesbians.)

    If Heart had said that the comments were restricted to “lesbians only”, because I am not lesbian I wouldn’t have commented here, or complained that she was a bigot because she wasn’t inviting me to comment here. This is her blog and she can invite who she wants. Similarly, if transwomen want their own spaces I won’t crash them, and I suspect most of them wouldn’t appreciate it if I did.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 11, 2007, 2:59 pm
  74. how are womyn going to change the system….

    first, i mentioned the splinter Mormons and the right wing misogyny, i will continue to stand as a very vocal advocate with womyn’s rights NGOS [and the individual womyn who are apostates of Islam, from Iran, elsewhere, who’ve lived with the hell, whom i have talked to personally and i will continue to support Rajavi and similar left groups/parties and those who are militant enough TO OVERTHROW THE RULE OF TYRANNICAL MULLAHS AND RELIGIOUS EMPIRES] in Iran and who have no issue with criticizing Islam or any religion..its a RELIGION, NOT A RACE. Its not just some ‘men’ its a SYSTEM, A POLITICAL SYSTEM, a POLITICAL CAPITALIST EMPIRE it you want to just be blunt…

    big difference….its not a ‘separate’ practice under a different government, its both, and its tyrannical as ever…not just on womyn’s issue either…I oppose all forms of governmental tyranny, religious and political, fascism is fascism…as for the womyn being targeted for the veil, granted on ‘some’ aspects of that you are correct, BUT, the veil too, is used as a symbol of separation and is referred to by POLITICAL ISLAMISTS as a REASON TO RAPE NON-VEILED WOMYN…IMAN IN AUSTRALIA, DAMN GOOD EXAMPLE OF THIS, HE’S NOT THE ONLY ONE EITHER…so there is MORE to that issue, than men wanting to see womyn unveiled…
    if we ‘pander’ to political religions [regardless of Who they are] because some groups who are vocal are racist, then why not ‘pander’ to every type of political institution that justifies gross human rights abuses for the sake of accomodation and avoidance of being lumped in with others who have different agendas or who are racist? Thats self-defeatest and womyn in Europe are finding this out the hard way…but as i said before, Thats what its going to take [Sharia courts in Europe and USA] and by That time, it will be too late. [and its those who are afraid to step on toes for the sake of not wanting to be lumped in with the racists that are assisting in the setting up of Sharia Courts and the political Islamists are laughing all the way to the Mosques–do some reading on the situ in UK, just population wise, under a voting democracy…give it not even ten years, UK will be fighting to hold on to the last shred of western democracy of any kind]. AS for Oman and Saudi, (eg) they are capitalist regions…the political Islamists hate them, the regions where there is some tolerance of womyn’s rights, are the very ones that are hated by political Islamists…add to the political situ and plans by those working to install Chavez like regimes [and trust me they are out there and they are increasing in numbers] so its a lot more than just being anti-Islam….a whole lot more, personally I have no issue with Islam as far as the faith, AS A POLITICAL AND STATE SYSTEM HOWEVER, IN COURTS, DAMN RIGHT, AND I’LL FIGHT IT JUST AS MUCH AS I OPPOSE AND FIGHT CHRISTIAN RULE IN COURTS AND IN LAW/STATE…from a Political perspective, I oppose nation-state and rule of state [statism] and so I have a different view because of… but KEEP THE MULLAHS AND THE PREACHERS AND THE POPE OUT OF STATE OUT OF LAW OUT OF THE RULE OVER PEOPLE’S PERSONAL LIVES…any compromise of that then it does not good to say, we oppose force or are against force, you can say that while they have you hanging in a gulag somewhere, POWER DOESN’T CARE IF YOU DON’T AGREE OR NOT.

    multi-cultural tolerance for abuse of womyn or womyn’s rights, take your pick. You can’t have both…to be accomodating just because there are abuses in the West which there are [but one difference, we don’t see masses of womyn being hauled off to prison for having marches here against those abuses…and beaten in the face, acid thrown in to their face [BY GOVERNMENT SPONSERED OFFICIALS] and gang raped in prisons by OFFICIALS THAT ARE PAYED FOR BY PREACHERS], huge difference…in the political framework there…Thats what womyn need to grasp, and the Muslim womyn [who can voice it without fear of loss of life] are saying the same thing.

    The critic of Political Islam, yes there are some who are racist, there are also just as many who are not, and who are confronting the POLITICAL SYSTEMS of TYRANNY and you’d be surprised at how many Womyn’s Rights groups in Iran and Middle East do refer people to read yes, Jihad Watch, they are very aware of racism,

    they are also more aware [than western womyn sorry but its true] ABOUT how the political Islamists [and true for racial nationalists and nation-state nationalists who are still in that post-colonial anti-imperialism therefore any means is justified who use some of the same rhetoric against all critics] will use liberal rights to advance their own human right abuses agenda…

    i oppose religious tyranny as a Liberal, as a Leftist, not as some right wing nut or racist bigot….and i’ll continue to do so, and yes the first thing the Misogynist Men do is say, bigot…while they go off, and enjoy watching womyn of color raped in porn,

    give me a break.

    Now, as to how all this ties in….i like what Mary says, Power, not ’empowerment’, that speaks so true and seriously Mary you HIT on something there that is MAJOR…

    we need womyn’s spaces, absolutely…but eventually we have to begin to address, HOW to change things,

    and as long as there is Capitalism, Nationalism, Empire and Religious Empire [and I would put the Empire of both Catholicism and Islam somewhat on the same level as far as money and power of influence goes, on global scale and with Islam the Islamic Rule [by government]] AND the influence of Christian power, more psychological and thats not to mean its not As powerful, its in ways MORE POWERFUL as it is at the heart of the psyche that supports Capitalism and that is the source of Globalization…

    so thats what womyn are up against, not just Patriarchy so how then, do womyn plan on changing that?

    As long as those POWER SYSTEMS are there…and THERE ARE WOMYN WHO SUPPORT THOSE SYSTEMS,

    then how in the world do womyn plan on changing that? Waiting to change minds of men? Thats not going to happen, as long as there is a POWER STRUCTURE/S that BENEFIT from tyranny, slavery and yes, oppression of womyn, then they aren’t going to give way because womyn protest.

    Separatism sure, works to a point, but look at systems where segregation is the Rule of Law, I don’t see womyn with power or empowerment in those systems….

    until womyn become a POLITICAL FORCE [AND I DON’T MEAN IN BED WITH THE OPPRESSORS OR CLASS OPPRESSORS OR RACE OPPRESSORS OR YES, RELIGIOUS OPPRESSORS AND YES I MEAN ISLAM AND CATHOLICISM/NATIONALISM]

    all that womyn do will succeed at one thing, and one thing only,

    a shoulder to cry on. thats it….

    i hate to be pessimistic here but if womyn can’t even get a radical womyn’s ‘autonomous’ platform in some of the most revolutionary anti-state political parties out there,

    then how in the hell do womyn think they are going to change the power infrastructure by resistance alone? And don’t forget, womyn who are low income and without resources, don’t have the means to resist, in many ways…they are Dependent upon the systems that oppress them…its not just MEN and only MEN,

    its MEN AND THE SYSTEMS MEN RULE AND OPERATE AND WITH THE HELP OF WOMYN,

    and when womyn become a force, what do states do?

    remember under patriarchy womyn are dispensible…and why? because you can have womyn come together in agreement over being against rape…[well not really, not when there are womyn who concur with the pathetic lie that womyn who aren’t in full tank and armor of loads of sheets ask for rape…or if a woman dances at a party she’s asking for rape and those womyn are out there…just look at college polls, you’d be surprised at the double standard views of Womyn, not just men],

    but lets say you bring all these womyn together, to oppose one thing…you still have womyn who are in agreement with nationalists, robber barrons, religious despots, etc…

    then what?

    Well for starters YES

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 3:45 pm
  75. sorry lost the last lines there…

    should be, then what? Well for starters YES there has to be Womyn ONLY spaces, and after giving this some thought that also means,

    yes, womyn only, not transgens meaning, men. Why, because the ‘agenda’s’ are in many ways opposite…

    there still needs to be those Bridges as there are transgends who are anti-patriarchial,

    but Bridges…different groups, that work as go betweens,

    keep the womyn’s only spaces just that, womyn only. They are ESSENTIAL to the forming of Solidarity…

    safe from the encroachment and rule of men or even the entering of ‘apologetics of tolerance of violence towards womyn and That includes, the constructs that are used to keep womyn under that violence’.

    Remember though, not ALL WOMYN HAVE ACCESS TO WOMYN’S ONLY SPACES,

    there are thousands of womyn who do not have computers, or transportation…etc. , they are more than just isolated…so its important to be AWARE that these womyn yes, do exist…and there needs to be more done to reach these womyn.
    but womyn’s only spaces aren’t enough on their own…
    Until womyn become a POLITICAL FORCE OUTSIDE THE RULE OF MEN AND THE INSTITUTIONS OF MALE POWER…

    womyn’s spaces alone won’t do it….why its very important to be fully aware, that working in solidarity with systems, that may be in agreement on some issues…won’t be enough either, and the more powerful a system [meaning the more control they have over regulating your personal life] the less movement womyn will have to work to change it…

    never forget, that systems due to male control, that includes RELIGIONS, have not a problem, with ridding the world of womyn if they feel womyn are a threat….

    which again, why womyn must not only have POWER, THEY WILL HAVE TO HAVE POLITICAL POWER…

    and that is where we run into Major obstacles. And there is not enough strategy in this regard because there is too many who are divided and pandering to those very ones, that will betray womyn’s rights.

    What we womyn need, is not just space,

    we need A REVOLUTION FOR WOMYN BY WOMYN…AND UNTIL WE GET THAT IN OUR HEARTS,

    WE HAVE A LONG LONG WAY TO GO–LETS HOPE THERE ARE STILL WOMYN AROUND IF WE WAIT THAT LONG.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 4:04 pm
  76. Heart, will I get to meet you at Michigan? Are you going this year?

    Posted by Goldfish | June 11, 2007, 4:56 pm
  77. In response to this:
    “Someone attempted to comment yesterday alleging they were from Boston and had the inside scoop, and insisting that transgender activists were not directly responsible for Bitch’s performance being canceled. This person said inviting Bitch had been someone’s “mistake.”

    I didn’t approve the comment because I don’t think it was a woman who wrote it, and the comments are to be woman-only here. I also didn’t approve it because it set off my bullshit detectors and sounded like a lie.

    Which it was.

    So I’m glad I didn’t approve it. I approve bullshit too often, really, because I am always trying to be so goddamn “fair.” :/”

    Dear Heart,
    I am the person you’re talking about from Boston (email me if you don’t believe me and we can talk about this). I AM a woman. I am a woman-born dyke and yes, I live in Boston, I have for 10 years. I do know the folks who spearheaded the campaign to ask the Dyke March committee to uninvite Bitch, because they are friends of mine. I think it’s absurd that you decided I wasn’t a woman and rejected my comment. Why? Because I disagreed with you, or tried to share information that you didn’t want to believe? It was wrong of you to decide that it was a lie. I’m not a troll, I’m not interested in causing trouble on message boards, I just wanted to make sure people writing on this board know what happened.

    One thing I mentioned in my previous post was that it wasn’t trans people or trans activists who cancelled Bitch’s performance, because please remember that it was the Dyke March committee that ultimately made the decision to uninvite Bitch. The Dyke March committee in Boston is made up largely (if not totally) of women-born dykes/queer women. You can even ask them.

    By the way, where do you get off saying in your post that it was a lie? How do you know? Who do you actually know in Boston who is either on the Dyke March committee or who emailed their friends and community members and wrote the committee about this issue, therefore influencing the event/action you’re all discussing here? An anonymous poster who’s words you liked better? I encourage you to actually talk with the committee.

    That’s what I wanted to add to the conversation. You, unfortunately, shut me down. I hope you do the right thing and post this message and admit you made a mistake. You can’t decide people aren’t women just because we disagree on something.

    Posted by Dyke from Boston | June 11, 2007, 5:01 pm
  78. Dyke from Boston, it is not your comment I was referring to. Are you the person who commented that people in the Dyke March would have been “devastated” had Bitch performed? I’m betting that was you. I didn’t approve your comment because if I recall correctly, you got into issues around transgender that I do not want to get into in this thread. This thread is about transgender activists canceling lesbian performances and lesbian films and otherwise ruining lesbian events. I’ve already blogged at length as to my position on transgender issues and don’t want this comment thread to be about that.

    The comment I was referring to was an earlier comment which was rude and hostile and which was not, I don’t believe, written by a woman.

    What is your response to what I posted earlier, also from a dyke in Boston with whom I’m familiar from elsewhere:

    It was extremely rude and unprofessional of the event’s organizers to cancel Bitch at the last minute. However, i am unsure if they canceled… at the last minute or were too untruthful to publicize the cancellation until the last minute. I went to the dyke march last night wearing my Michigan shirt (my girlfriend was dressed in hers as well) with a sign reading “respect all womyn” on one side, and “bring Bitch back” on the other. I got mostly positive comments with some people saying they didn’t even know what was going on and finding the cancellation completely ridiculous. A couple told me they had driven 200 miles just to see Bitch.

    What made the event extremely offensive and reeking of bullshit and individual dyke march committee members’ agendas was the speeches several committee members made [extolling] the virtues of having a community that disagreed and having an inter-community dialogue. They also stressed how they were open to everyone…

    …I approached the organizers and asked them to expand on why they cancelled Bitch. They said that although this wasn’t their belief “several” (they didn’t specify the number) people approached the committee and said they felt oppressed by Bitch. …

    This whole experience has left me feeling disgusted with the Boston lesbian community.

    You say the Boston dyke march would be devastated if Bitch p layed, I see that Boston dykes are devastated that she didn’t.

    I understand that the Committee made the ultimate decision. I also know, from all I have read everywhere, that the push to make that decision came from transgender activists. (And it’s true, my early speculation that possibly transmen and transwomen were on the committee was incorrect, but I didn’t say I knew for sure or state it with certainty, I prefaced my comment with “I suspect.”)

    What, we’re going to now give transgender activists a pass because it wasn’t transgender activists per se who made the decision with respect to the Gendercator? (Although it may have been, I have no way to know that.) Transgender activists are the people who demanded that Frameline drop the Gendercator until Frameline caved. Just like I believe transgender activists — who may not, as I’ve already said have even been transgender themselves — pushed the Boston committee to make the decision to drop Bitch.

    Wait. I even read that somewhere, which I should go find, a blog post somewhere which stated that the people who demanded that Bitch be dropped were mostly not themselves transgender.

    But they were still transgender activists,whether they were themselves transgender or not, and they still harmed a woman: Bitch. And all the women who went to see her, drove 200 miles, and so on.

    It is so discouraging all of this, “transgender people didn’t do it!”

    Of course they did, but if they didn’t, transgender activists did it and in any case, once again, lesbians and women pay.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 5:34 pm
  79. And here’s something more to think about, thinking along the lines of the Bayard Rustin quotes Autumn Sandeen posted.

    Lesbian human and civil rights are of little-to-no use to males. They do not benefit males and, in fact, they are problematic to males and so they are not important and are easily made invisible.

    There’s another group of women whose human and civil rights are of no use to the world’s most powerful males: white women’s human and civil rights. These are not immediately beneficial to white men. Ultimately white men will benefit, but not in the short run, not directly.

    Ever wonder about the viciousness of the attacks on “white feminists”? Especially when they are overwhelmingly made by white men? Ever stand astonished at the way white men, including progressives and leftists, co-called, position themselves against white feminist women?

    White men don’t want to share their power with white women. They do not stand to gain from doing so, directly.

    One reason the Civil Rights movement was so successful is, it was a movement led by men and including men, women and children. Women weren’t alone in their resistance.

    The same is true about issues around poverty, around disability, immigrants rights. These movements have overwhelmingly been led by men and have included men, women and children. Women didn’t stand alone in their resistance.

    The movements for the liberation of white women and of lesbians do not include men and never have and men do not stand to benefit from them. These movements are not led by men and men are not directly part of them. In these movements, women have stood alone.

    Men of color benefit by the liberation of women of color to the degree that the liberation of women of color opens doors to employment, education, access to corporate boardrooms and government office which have been closed on account of race, because the same doors which admit women of color will admit men of color, as well.

    Disabled and poor and immigrant men benefit by doors disabled/poor/immigrant women open because doors closed on account of disability/poverty/xenophobia are doors they will also be able to walk through if women open them, when previously they could not.

    But white men don’t benefit by the liberation of white women. Doors opened by white women to what have been sanctuaries for white men in government, corporate America, education, media, are doors white men have kept tightly locked to ensure their place on the top of the hierarchy of both sex and race. For white women to force those doors open means white men will have to then share power, money, status, influence, and full humanity with white women and ultimately with all women. They will LOSE something. It will COST them.

    This is one reason for the herstoric alliances between lesbians of all races and white women, whether het or lesbian which nobody ever talks about; and which will earn you a metaphorical brick to the head, when and if you talk about it too strenuously and courageously, whatever the venue.

    This is what drives the attack, for the last 20 years or so on those dreaded “white feminists”. Not that white feminists have been “racists” (though some have been.) Not that white feminists have been “classist” or “elitist” or “transphobic” (though some have been). No, what drives the attack is that white women’s liberation directly threatens white male hegemony, and so white men move to squash it, to silence it, to demonize it, wherever it becomes too powerful, too effective, wherever it makes a little too much sense, and if they have to lie about us, make sure we aren’t published, make sure only what is derogatory about us is published, make sure we don’t get hired, make sure we don’t get tenure, make sure our history is revisioned and blotted out, that’s precisely what what white men will do. They, after all, have the power to do all of the above easily, and much more.

    White men are no part of white women’s movement for liberation, except as allies, and there are precious few of those. They are also, under white male supremacy, the default. Under white male supremacy, they are the plumb line. They are the people with the money, the power. They are the people who are the definers of “human” and “human rights” and “civil rights.” If white women should actually share in all of the above, white men lose. Then we are not home having babies, serving them, washing their dirty socks, keeping our hands off jobs that keep them in power and money that keeps them in power, then we are not their sex class, either. Lesbians aren’t going to do any of this stuff for them. Neither are radical feminists. Neither are truly liberated white women.

    Hence, they attack us and encourage everybody else to attack us, too, and lie about us, and trash and crash our spaces and our organizations. Because our full humanity means they are going to have to fucking share. With women. For the first time in their goddamn lives, most of them. Our humanity means, gone is everything that debases and dehumanizes us and makes us less than them, and that’s not going to do, they want on TOP, firmly and securely and for as long as they can hold on to that spot.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 5:38 pm
  80. However, I am actually going to e-mail you, Dyke from Boston, and thanks for inviting me to.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 5:53 pm
  81. Dyke in Boston, was this your comment?

    It seems like this site is very slanted towards bigotry to trans people. First off, many people are saying transwomen are men. Anyone saying this basically loses all credibility to fight against discrimination. Transwomen are women who suffered just as much, if not more, to be women. No one is saying all women don’t suffer to be women but we all need to recognize our inherent biases and work to get over them.

    Outside of this whole thing about saying transwomen are men, people should also realize that trans people come in many varieties. Not everyone fits in the binary gender system anymore. Trans people are such a huge part of our community here in Boston including being part of the Dyke March committee and being involved in so much other political activism around the city/state. It would have been devastating to the Dyke March in Boston had Bitch performed.

    I will say I understand the mentality of the organizers of MWMF. We all can debate trans-inclusiveness today because the women in generations before us fought so hard to get us where we are. I totally respect everything they did for us. However change is a constant and even though it can be uncomfortable we all need to learn to adapt.

    I want there to be spaces where all women feel comfortable including trans folk. Personally, if something like MWMF became totally overrun with trans people then that would be really sad. So no I can’t totally say that it doesn’t make me feel uncomfy in some ways but I also don’t want to discriminate. Instead of fighting about this I think it would be better to discuss it without trying to insult the other side.

    A bit more about me, I’m totally a feminist and born in the 70s. I’m glad there are women only spaces out there and in fact I spend most of my time around women. I do feel weird when men are in a lesbian bar/club but not when trans people are there, they’re harmless so what’s the problem?

    If so, I did not want this thread going down the primrose path of Oppression Olympics and who is more oppressed, transpersons or lesbians/women, which is how you began your comments. That is a hopeless discussion and a useless and counterproductive discussion, no matter what marginalized groups we’re talking about.

    I was also quite offended by this, “we shouldn’t insult one another.” What about Bitch? Was she insulted? What about Catherine Crouch? Do you think she was insulted? What about all the people who wanted to hear/see Bitch and the Gendercator? Weren’t they insulted?

    Also, there was the stuff about saying transwomen are “men.” Nobody has said that here, ever, that I can see, and I didn’t want to have to straighten that all out either, it’s a diversion in a comments thread that is already difficult.

    This is a thread about transgender activists having canceled the showing of the Gendercator, Bitch’s performance, and having generally caused harm to lesbian women and women, period.

    That’s what I want to discuss, and that’s why I elected not to approve the above comment.

    But I did not think a man wrote the above comment, I believed a woman wrote it.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 5:59 pm
  82. Note: I will not approve responses to the accusations in the above block-quoted comment which I previously did not approve. We are not going to defend ourselves, not a one of us, against “bigotry” against transpersons when it is a LESBIAN and a WOMAN whose performance was canceled by transgender activists, whether they were transgender or not; and when it is a LESBIAN’s film which is not showing in San Francisco. (Unless we send enough e-mails, possibly.) That’s what this thread is about. Not what “bigots” we are for being angry over women being directly, materially harmed by the acts of transgender activists.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 6:02 pm
  83. I become very tired of the old Bigotry Baiting tactic. Like Race Baiting it is used as a silencer and a manipulator. It is used to induce guilt generally by innuendo and baseless accusations to manipulate and shame individuals to STFU. Folks are not displaying bigotry when they challenge and examine facts. I.e. Bitch was prevented from performing at a lesbian event by whomever. To use these tactics undermine logical analysis by emotional manipulation and thusly destroy the ambiance required for a healthy discussion.

    Posted by sparklematrix | June 11, 2007, 7:20 pm
  84. fwiw- it was YEARS ago now (not sure how many– more than 5) that Alix Dobkin was uninvited from Philadelphia’s Dyke March because she dared to argue in favor of Michigan’s WBW policy and because she was outspokenly challenging the erasure of wimmin’s spaces.

    Not to diminish the insult to Bitch and the importance of the current issue. Just noting that this is not new, and what we’re seeing here is more of the same.

    Does anyone else notice that the pro-trans activists do not seem to spend much time insisting that conservative women’s organizations include transwomen? I’ve never heard that they picketed the Daughters of the American Revolution for failing to adopt explicitly trans-inclusive policies.

    No. We are attacked for being “transphobic” both because we are vulnerable and because there is some sort of legitimacy they are seeking by forcing inclusion.
    And it is working, partly because they are able (like most colonizers) to get some of those being colonized to participate in our erasure. So a committee of dykes makes a decision to fire a dyke performer out of fear that trans sensibilities will be ruffled, and whether any transpeople were directly involved or not, the deed is done and the censorship of DYKE voices/art/music is accomplished at the Dyke march.

    I am not afraid of or out to harm transpeople as individuals. But I’m sick
    of the constant insistence that they are entitled to all of the culture and art and resources and cultural spaces we have made over the past 30+ years, and everything new we do must meet with their approval. And if we don’t toe the line, we are voted off the island… even if we were the ones who found, developed, inhabited the island in the first place.

    grrrr

    Posted by Otter | June 11, 2007, 7:44 pm
  85. I’m a lesbian. And born female. Many transwomen are also lesbians. One of them was my dear girlfriend and lover. Open your minds and hearts, please.

    Posted by lesbian | June 11, 2007, 7:47 pm
  86. “Hence, they attack us and encourage everybody else to attack us, too, and lie about us, and trash and crash our spaces and our organizations. Because our full humanity means they are going to have to fucking share. With women. For the first time in their goddamn lives, most of them. Our humanity means, gone is everything that debases and dehumanizes us and makes us less than them, and that’s not going to do, they want on TOP, firmly and securely and for as long as they can hold on to that spot.”

    Heart

    While i don’t concur with absolutely everything on this board,

    That Heart, that entire post you just wrote

    SAYS IT ALL….DAMN GIRL,

    YOU GO.

    NOW THAT I CAN STAND IN SOLIDARITY WITH, 100%.
    🙂 BEAUTIFULLY SAID, ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL….

    TASHA

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 8:17 pm
  87. 😀

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 8:37 pm
  88. Thank you for moderating this post, Heart. I’ve read most of the comments and it’s been enlightening and felt supportive.

    Posted by Arantxa | June 11, 2007, 8:57 pm
  89. Yeah, Otter. What seems striking about the cancelation of Bitch’s performance is its proximity to the cancelation of the showing of The Gendercator. It’s amazing, really. All the films which have been shown by Frameline which some believe to be misogynist, or racist, or xenophobic and yet never before, not once, in all the years has a film been pulled after it has been approved and listed in the program. To me, that’s remarkable and really disturbing, given that it’s a lesbian film, and those are scarce, even with Frameline, and the people who demanded it be pulled hadn’t seen it, almost none of them. It’s creepy.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 9:14 pm
  90. Hey, SparkleMatrix, so true, and you are most welcome, Arantxa.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 11, 2007, 9:15 pm
  91. Wanted to say when this issue was first posted here i thought it was over inclusion…

    the more i read the more it becomes apparent that what has happened here,

    is so much like what happened to me and a few others in the far left parties [though it wasnt just white men, the Chicano men –Atzlan supporters– and pro-Hezbollah men and pro-Hamas men] did the same exact thing…

    refuse to publish us, ban our posts, twist words, demonize us, ‘the oh white feminists are white imperialists etc’ and this is the propaganda they use in the East to turn womyn against white feminists…you know cuzz we all just mini skirt wearing whores [thats exactly how they demonize feminists in the west too]

    and the more i am putting it together the more it is clear, this wasn’t about ‘not including’ transgenders, this was about feminists and lesbian feminists [well feminists, i usually don’t separate i just say feminists or radical feminists] but anyway,

    this was about feminists hanging onto what venue they have left, to assemble, organize, speak from a Woman’s View that is Anti-catering to MEN’S NEEDS, rather than the other way around…

    a suggestion, make the venues around ISSUES, included…in other words, THIS CONCERT TO PROTEST PORN, seriously…you will see just how fast, the pro-male worship trans and yes, some womyn, will run….

    because the trans are using the ‘liberal arguement’ of inclusion right? [sort of what political religious human right abusers do, oh don’t prohibit our hate speech and death threats from pulpits and centers, but don’t dare talk about the Holocaust as that supports Zionism, that type of crap logic…no i don’t support Zionism but giving that as an example as to how some politics use the liberal rights as means to actually do anti-liberal things….]

    but if trans are using the inclusion…then NAIL THEM ON THE ISSUES…MAKE THEM CHOOSE, BRING THEM OUT, THE HYPOCRISY,

    i know this works because i’ve done it on discussions, several times, especially on issues of porn and prostitution…and thats when their true colors come out — then its not about inclusion or no inclusion anymore, its about,

    WHERE DO YOU STAND?

    YOU EITHER STAND TO SUPPORT WOMYN’S HUMAN RIGHTS NOT TO BE SEXUALLY EXPLOITED, TORTURED, RAPED, PROPPED UP AS THINGS TO BE MUTILATED FOR SOMEONE’S ENTERTAINMENT, NOT TO BE ENSLAVED IN ANY FORM OR WAY, NOT TO BE CONTROLLED BY ANY MAN, IN ANY WAY….

    OR YOU DON’T, IF YOU DON’T, THEN YOU AREN’T INCLUDED, BECAUSE WE STAND ON OPPOSITE SIDES.

    THATS WHERE THE LINES NEED TO BE DRAWN, IN EVERY ASPECT…WHERE THE HEART OF REVOLUTION IS…

    from what i can gather from going back and reading all this…it is comparable, to the ‘bourgousie’ who wanted to overthrow the Tsars but who wanted to maintain some of the old power structure as they benefited…why Lenin said,

    rid of them. Draw the lines…ITS NOT ENOUGH THAT YOU WEAR A DRESS, WEAR MAKE-UP AND GET FUCKED BY A MAN…OR WANT TO,

    YOU EITHER FOR US OR AGAINST US, YOU WANT TO BE WOMYN, THEN BY GOLLY,

    YOU FIGHT FOR WOMYN, AS WOMYN, AGAINST THE MALE SUPREMACY, AGAINST MALE ENTITLEMENT TO WOMYN’S BODIES AND THAT MEANS, ENTITLEMENT TO TRANSGENDER BODIES…

    see, you draw the lines…they have [the ones responsible, i’m not fully aware of the Eastern scene here so i’m just going by what i read here ok] but they have, strategically,

    put feminists and lesbians on the ‘defense’, oh no,

    take it back, put Them on the defense…TAKE IT BACK…I would demand, What do you, trans, who oppose lesbians and feminists right to have their space, our space,

    WHAT DO YOU STAND FOR? HEY, YOU WANT INCLUSION, HERE YOU GO, WE ARE PROTESTING PORN, PICK UP A SIGN…START MARCHING,

    i think you would see a huge segment of them walking away. They trying to take over because like Heart says, they Don’t like what we are fighting for…

    well Too Damn Bad. Time to pull out the Grace [WAG, i love that show] on their asses, meaning,

    TIME FOR SOME SISTER TO TRANS WHOOP ASS,

    they want to be sisters, then by golly, they gonna know what it is to have their butts kicked by Sisters.

    HAVE THE CONCERTS ANYWAY AND SHOW THE FILM, FIND WAYS TO DO SO…DO IT THE WAY THE Z FOLKS DO,
    ITS CALLED CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE…

    MAKE COPIES OF THE FILM, LIKE THE UNDERGROUND ZINES DO AND SHOW IT ALL OVER THIS COUNTRY…ONLINE IF YOU HAVE TO, CONCERT TOO,

    [see you can learn a few things from the anarchists and we don’t obey leftists…lol, time to get underhanded here, seriously,

    if there is a way you can purchase Gendercator, say it here,
    if small groups can show banned films in indie bookstores and z lines groups and indiemedia etc…

    it can be done. Maybe not as profitable, but hey, if they want to censur, there are WAYS to work around that…and not just in a ‘safe place’, hell no, you know what you all need is some Revolutionary Spark IWW style, seriously, lol, know i’m being serious here…one thing i learned,

    indirect warfare, works. When you are on the ‘defense’ they got the upper hand…thats what They want.

    Don’t give it to them.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 9:31 pm
  92. there is a place where i live where they show films that are not like, very accepted in Amerikkka, anti-corporation films, documentaries by labor leaders who are targeted and many killed, etc…

    how can we show Gendercator? Or how can womyn purchase it? And can you purchase Bitch cds offline or only online?

    And, what about a list, of all the female artists, like Bitch, that we can post on our blogs….along with films? That we can also, distribute to womyn in our communities…

    I’ve only bought “Bitch” magazine once, i don’t buy too many magazines due to i’m on a budget but i do read them online…there used to be a lesbian owned paper in the city close to me but i haven’t seen it in eons…funny now that i think of it but the trans have a lot of power here…

    but i do know, the street ‘homeless people’s paper was taken over by the GLBT and Progressives and the homeless writing by homeless street people, was tossed, literally tossed…know this was a segment of the upper class GLBT where we live, progressives too, not all of them, its a cliche of sort, that controls a lot of the politics, its very upper class, and white…

    and unique to the political character of where i am…so its not a generalization across the country, and these activists ARE NOT RADICAL FEMINISTS….that took over the paper.

    So the homeless have had to go underground, many of them divided even more as the city has criminalized them more…talk about being invisible…and the human right abuses towards the homeless are horrid, especially the womyn. The ones in power and the ones wanting power [including activists who are more of the ‘elite’ type] are more than glad the homeless are in many ways, out of the way, out of site…you know thats why power structures always first work to make you invisible, if you are invisible then acts of cruelty can go on without any objection…

    cuzz know one knows or cares. Its either they make you invisible or they demonize you so that its your fault and therefore you deserve what they dole out….the homeless here worked too, for years, making that paper, it was a cheaply made paper, nothing fancy, but it was the voice of the most vulnerable people, their poems, art, essays, resource sharing, support…

    and now its all gone, all they kept, the ones who took it over, is a list of foodbanks on the last page. I’ve never forgiven them for that really, these people weren’t trying to make profit or a name, they just wanted to be heard…

    and that was taken from them. So in that i can understand why lesbians/radical feminists who have worked thirty something years in creating spaces would be livid that they are threatened and taken over by force, by those who have lived a big part of their life as part of the ‘oppressive entity’. Even if they weren’t in agreement with all of it, etc…

    the difference is though, the homeless don’t have a lot of resources to regroup and fight, they are trying to stay out of camps, trying to keep from being the next one found beheaded in a gutter [yea, it happens, all the time, you just don’t hear about it in the media, but go to a morgue, a graveyard, and look at the jane does and john does graves….just in the last ten years.

    the internment camps, the Guatameno Bay, they were doing that to homeless, as practice and the homeless were warning Amerikkka, for years, and no one listened, now there is Blackwater…and camps being built to jail nondocumented workers…why the gov succeeds, because they have succeeded, for years, against the homeless,

    right under the noses of even the most radical….because,
    the homeless, were demonized by media and/or made to be invisible, people became ‘desensitized’ to the homeless problem.

    take a lesson from it, do not stretch yourselves so thin that you run out of recourses, choose battles carefully, wisely, know the enemies tactics…

    were the event sponsers aware the trans activists were going to do this?

    I took a look at the Michigan Fest, i dont’ see what the big deal is, hell it is no different than a church camp, or boy scout camp or girl scout camp, i mean there are camps of all sorts of groups, that meet and have music festivals so why the whole big deal about womyn only camps? seems harmless to me…whats the threat? seriously [this to the trans btw] what is the threat?

    whats next, boycotting artists or teachers for speaking at a girl scout camp? i mean really, how PETTY. its really Petty when you think about it…

    it just proves that this isn’t about ‘inclusion’ ITS ABOUT SOMEONE WANTING TO TAKE CONTROL,

    so i ask, to the trans, What purpose? Can’t you set up your own camps? Can’t you set up a Transfest camp or something? i went back again and reread the very first entry, to the trans that sued the rape center, what the heck? I mean, how fricking petty is that, how selfish? Seriously, whoever he/she is, needs a good ass kickin, seriously,

    was this trans a rape victim because she was a woman and wanting to work or just wanting to work and got pissed because they were asked to do another position?

    you know it would be like me, a white woman, going into an all African American feminist group, or, better yet, lets say, a Chicano Womyn’s Feminist group, and forcing my way in as a speaker, saying I was now Chicano because I decided or am born truly Chicano though i’ve lived all my life as a white woman, benefiting from the slave labor that picks the food on my table, o.k., and then suing them for them not letting me have my way….

    if i did that i would deserve to have my ass kicked, and they would be in their right, to be angry as hell.

    see thats not true solidarity…thats PATERNALISM.

    but now i can work in a Bridge group, with the Chicano womyn, in solidarity, sharing many of the same oppressions but then, also, not sharing because our experiences are different, neither pain cancels out the other…if the Bridge is there and there is a mutual respect, which has to be EARNED,

    because of past injustice…that i may have benefited from or may not, but the segment of race that i belong to as a whole, has benefitted from therefore if i was a decent human being i would respect that, and respect the fact that they have to work out their anger and self determination and sure, i can stand up for my rights [in those cases of reverse racism which they do exist but you know, those are mostly ‘male controlled and patriarchial’ and from elites, those in power or seeking power, not from your masses, your average joe and susy who are just living and trying to survive]

    and anyway stand up for my rights and respecting their rights and their right to stand up for theirs…

    Thats what solidarity is…the reason i brought up the need to draw lines and issues…is that, [note: i will include, i can stand in solidarity with self-determination but still refuse to stand in solidarity with the men who oppress you even if it is a culture or race…because i believe, womyn are entitled to human rights as womyn, outside of class, race, religion, economics, region, rural or urban, regardless so i will oppose any men, regardless of ‘race’ or ‘religion’ who think otherwise, why i say its not just white men, you can apply what Heart wrote, to men in every single country, region, but in the west yes, its white men]

    even among lesbians, not all lesbians are radical feminists, just as not all womyn, are radical feminists…and obviously, not all transwomen are radical feminists…

    you have to have solidarity, for a revolution, cultural or economic or feminist…

    what has transpired here with the censureship is the means, the usual means of male warfare, divide and conquer…they may be trans but they still fight like men. What was done, to Bitch, to Gendercator,

    is not culture imperialism, no, maybe part, but its more than that…

    its RAPE, ITS A FORM OF RAPE.

    and PILLAGING, WHICH IS,

    A PATRIARCHIAL AND MALE CHARACTER TRAIT…PASSED DOWN FROM CENTURIES TO CENTURIES…

    [why i hope you do allow the other post Heart…what is needed is an understanding of how men, even if they are now trans, still have the learned behavior of male patriarchial warfare, just from what i have gathered on reading here…and i’m not that aware of the entire scope or history of this conflict but trust me i’ll be doing my research]

    this attack on Bitch, was an indirect ‘planned’ attack, and they had the sympathy of several obviously so that tells me, there is a bigger agenda…

    you know i always told the far left, that lesbianism, was one of the if not the biggest threat to patriarchy and heterosexual ‘supremacy’ and why it was imperative for heterosexual womyn to really learn from and about the lesbian movement…i knew this more when i started using ‘womYn’ and the first thing i got was ‘are you a lesbian?’ and that is why i looked it up one day on google…i could sense the sneer from a few men when they asked that…

    it was such a threat to them, i didn’t tell them one way or another, let them fume i thought…what business is it of theirs anyway, i said, maybe i do bananas so what, i chose to use womYn…

    needless to say, the men weren’t real impressed, then i got ‘oh you’re a femi-nazi’…in a so called GLBT Rights group, lol,
    and boy it is so tied up in the control over womyn’s sexuality, over womyn period…

    and i’ll let you in on a secret, want to know who some of the strongest attackers were against me in the far left?

    Gay men, no joke, they Hated me…literally Hated me.

    so i started to understand what that ‘aristotle love’ was all about…in fact, the main one who censured my posts on womyn’s rights, was a gay man, a gay white man. no kidding…i thought it was his age [he’s a bit older] but no…oh no,
    then the others, machismo assholes or men who think womyn should be lined up on their knees bowing to them assholes [and they are the ones who adore that little Napolean wanna be in Iran and Chavez, the little Ceasar]

    why i keep posting here…you have allies i think you are not aware of…and avenues, not taken up yet…

    i can no longer work in far left because i can no longer support venues that dismiss womyn’s rights, that force the cries of womyn in the rage against injustice into invisibility or in platforms that push womyn back into the closet while the men go to that closet to rape and maim with impunity all the while beating their chest and saluting the cheers of duped masses while they proclaim, ‘we fight for feminism’…

    i can no longer in good conscious do that, but too, i can not fight and forget the underclass womyn and children and yes, men, because there are broken men on the streets, the invisible, the persecuted, the demonized and support an economic system that thrives on the misery of the slaves, oppressed, so that plastic goods can be hoarded up in the shelves of stores…which yes, is a harder war as we all benefit from the slavery in one way or another, even the poor in the west, as that is a global infrastructure that thrives on geopolitical racism and geopolitical religious/political tyrannies that all thrive on taxation of minorities and forced labor of slaves.

    so i came here…i don’t know all the issues behind the trans, i just recently learned about the intersex, some of it, yea is a bit confusing,

    but this much i do know, when you have a ‘platform’ and a strategy, its much harder for those with agendas that are in opposition to the struggle, to get a foot in the door…and its much harder for them to target one here or one there and cause harm,

    this was what i meant a week ago about warfare…you have to know how men use warfare, and they know it, even the most liberal and feminist of men, understand it…its not something majority of womyn have been taught, or understand…

    its not enough to be on the defense, if we are going to overcome. I think what would be good is a history of how this conflict all developed, why, and what the purpose of the trans responsible is…and not just that,

    but how [not just the white men, thats a huge part of it though] but how the industries benefit from it? from the attacks and planned weakening of the radical feminist movement…

    Heart if you don’t post these, thats o.k. but email me…

    lets talk…i did learn some things working in the left, studied strategy for years, warfare included and i’m not referring to just ‘physical warfare’ but political warfare…

    the last thing that womyn want, is to become invisible, i can’t emphasize this enough, just how dangerous this possibility is in Amerikkka today…can’t emphasize this enough. I know, i’ve seen trans on every single feminist bulletin out there and its like, they are working double time, to support porn, prostitution, they use the ‘goddess symbolism’ to do it,
    hell just ‘yahoo groups, type up goddess groups, and you see tons, worldwide, of porn sites, women or transwomen, posing to appeal to men…

    there is more to this, than just transwomen…even the Maoists now, are very open about gay men and trans support but still somewhat ‘minimal’ regarding womyn and lesbians, hell almost silent to lesbian rights,

    that speaks volumes.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 11, 2007, 11:09 pm
  93. Say, lesbian, up there at 86, please read comments numbers 18, 28 and 55, before you ask womyn here to open our hearts.

    Goldfish, I do plan to bend heaven and earth to get myself to the Festival this year– let’s try to connect!

    Now I ‘ll read you, Tasha.🙂

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 5:04 am
  94. Sorry to drag the discussion off topic but a lot of the dialogue about race is starting to bother me.
    I’m nonwhite and a radfem, or at least pro-radfem and for the most part white radfems have received me respectfully and kindly.
    Tasha, “Aztlan” is a term used in the US by white supremacists.
    The Conquest of Aztlan, Eurabia: Feminism brainwashes women to suppress their natural desire for a family so they pursue careers instead. This means they’ll have no children or two few. Consequently countries require unhealthy amounts of immigrants to stay alive. Career women are mother failures.
    Those people are anti-“Eurabia” and anti-“Aztlan”, they are also racist, misogynist, pro-natalist, anti-reproductive rights, anti-feminist and anti-woman.
    If white women are the ultimate oppressed class and women of color are by proxy aiders and abettors of men of color*, then I don’t know if I’m welcome here anymore.
    I don’t deny that white women suffer a lot under patriarchy, but nonwhite women are faced not only with racism and misogyny, but a toxic combination of both. I get racism because I’m Asian, sexism because I’m female, plus the racial-sexual submissive/china doll/geisha/mail order bride/sex slave garbage.
    *Oh, and BTW I’ve taken lots of crap from other Asians because I am a feminist, especially a radical feminist, and I refuse to support misogynist Asian men.
    Heart- if this is offensive or inappropriate, feel free to delete or edit.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 12, 2007, 5:42 am
  95. Hey, Littoralmermaid, I haven’t read Tasha’s most recent comments, actually, I haven’t carefully read the most recent comments here, except the shorter ones, but I did a search of this thread and couldn’t find the term “Aztlan” except in your comment. Where is that reference from so I can take a look? I’m trying to figure out what you are responding to in Tasha’s post(s).
    I don’t think white women are the ultimate oppressed class and am not sure where that’s coming from? As I said earlier, I think it’s pretty much always useless and wrongheaded to hierarchicalize oppressions, i.e., to suggest that this person is “more” oppressed than another person, and so on. Maybe your reference is not to anything I wrote, but just in case, I was responding to Autumn’s reference to Bayard Rustin, a leader in the Civil Rights movement in the U.S., and I was comparing the Civil Rights and other fairly successful human rights movements with radical feminism/lesbian separatism. My point was that where men are part of a movement, the movement is taken seriously. Where men are not part of a movement (as with white feminists and lesbians), the movement is taken less seriously and is hence less credible. Because women, of course, are taken less seriously and are less credible under male heterosupremacy. It’s our connections with males which determine our value and credibility and acceptance to patriarchy, and if we don’t have any connections with males, we have much less credibility/value (in the eyes of sexists and traditional people.)

    This isn’t any statement about how oppressed white feminists/lesbians are vis a vis other feminists. It is a statement about the backlash against, and attacks on, white radical and lesbian feminism over the past 20 years which have so impacted our movement. (And these ideas aren’t original to me; the ideas, or some of them, came originally from an essay by Catharine MacKinnon.)

    You are absolutely right that women (of all races) often labor under multiple oppressions simultaneously as do some men– race, class, disability, lesbophobia/homophobia, ageism, oppression as mothers, and so on. I was responding more specifically to Autumn’s question about why transgender arguments have been more persuasive to people like the Frameline people than radfem/lesbian feminist arguments.

    Of course, if you weren’t referencing anything I said, this is all free fer nuttin. 🙂

    Of course you’re welcome here. 🙂 I’ve added you to the blogroll.

    Heart

    Posted by Heart | June 12, 2007, 6:31 am
  96. Allow me to clarify,

    one, i’ve written Much on the double and triple oppression of womyn of color,

    two, yes there is an Aztlan movement, they have a webpage, they are an organization and in fact, I learned about them from A COMMUNIST LEFTIST CHICANO MALE,

    not right wing white,

    they have Legit claims, there is a Reconquesta movement, they have Legit claims, I have discussed this with Chicanos…it is not a myth…do I concur with all the claims, NO, I have a daughter who is HALF CHEROKEE NATION, AND I WORK WITH SEVERAL NATIVE AMERICAN INDIAN WOMYN THAT WOULD DISAGREE STRONGLY, AS TO WHAT LAND CLAIMS THERE IS,

    ALL IN LEFT POLITICS.

    My writing, IS FROM A POOR LOW INCOME LEFTIST WHITE WOMAN,

    AND YES, THERE ARE DIRT POOR WHITE WOMYN IN AMERIKKKA, AND NO YOU WON’T HEAR ABOUT THEM MUCH ON THE WEB OR READ THEIR BLOGS…THEY ARE, IN FACT, A HUGE SEGMENT OF THE INCREASING POOR AND MARGINALIZED IN AMERIKKKA,

    TO VOICE THIS FACT DOES NOT MAKE ME A RACIST NOR DOES IT DENY THAT THERE IS WHITE PRIVILEDGE AND YES DAMN RIGHT I RESENT THE FUCK OUT OF THAT IMPLICATION,

    I SLEPT IN SHELTERS IN NASTY COTS RIGHT NEXT TO AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMYN, ASIAN AMERICAN WOMYN AND LATINA WOMYN…SHARED MEALS WITH THEM, DID CHORES AT SIX O CLOCK IN THE MORNING WITH THEM, WALKED IN THE DOORS WITH A CLOSED SLAMMED GATE AT 9 O CLOCK SHARP WITH THEM, SAT UP WITH THEM, LISTENED TO THEIR STORIES OF PIMPS RUNNING ONE OVER, HELD A WOMAN IN MY ARMS WHILE SHE WENT THROUGH DT’S, COMFORTED A WOMAN, A WHITE WOMAN, WHO WAS STRUNG OUT ON HEROIN, BEAT UP BADLY, WHO STILL HAD CUM ON HER MOUTH AND WAS LEFT IN AN ALLEY, COMFORTED HER WITH OTHER WOMYN, WHO WERE AFRICAN AMERICAN, LATINA AND ASIAN AMERICAN, LOUISVILLE KENTUCKY,

    THE MAJORITY OF WOMYN IN THAT SHELTER, IN THE BAD PART, WERE YES,

    WHITE, SECOND HIGHEST NUMBER, AFRICAN AMERICAN, ONE ASIAN AMERICAN, THREE LATINA WOMYN

    IF I WAS RIGHT WING DO YOU REALLY THINK I WOULD USE AMERIKKKA?

    DON’T EVEN, DON’T EVEN, I AM SO SICK TO DEATH OF EVERY TIME I REFER TO THE TRUTH, OF WHAT IS GOING ON IN THIS COUNTRY, TO HEAR,

    THE TYPICAL PC LIBERAL PRO CAPITALIST BULLSHIT OF

    OH THATS RIGHT WING OR THATS RACIST,

    NO WONDER THE FAR LEFT RIGHT NOW IS LIKE ON THE MOVE…AND YOU WANT TO KNOW SOMETHING,

    ITS MAJORITY OF WHITE MEN, WHO ARE PISSED OFF THAT THEY ARE GETTING JILTED,

    AND THEY DONT’ GIVE A CRAPS ASS ABOUT WOMYN, THEY DAMN SURE DON’T GIVE A CRAPS ASS ABOUT WOMYN OF COLOR,

    WHY THEY HAVE NO QUALMS ABOUT TRAFFICKING AND PORN AND WHY I WAS BOOTED OUT…FOR STANDING AGAINST IT,

    THEY SCREAMED BIGOT WHEN I CONFRONTED POLITICAL ISLAM AND POSTED TIME AND TIME AGAIN ON ABUSES WOMYN ENDURED IN IRAN, PALESTINE, NIGERIA, DARFUR, INDIA, CHINA,

    BUT OH, THEY SURE DIDN’T HAVE ANY ISSUE WITH TONS OF VIOLENT PORN AND CHILD PORN, ON A MODERATED SITE MIND YOU, THAT WAS FROM MAJORITY OF COUNTRIES OF

    WOMYN OF COLOR…MAJORITY OF THE PORN WAS WOMYN OF COLOR BEING RAPED AND MUTILATED AND DEBASED,

    AMAZING WHEN IT ALL CAME OUT, HOW SOON THEY PURGED ME…

    SO WHOSE THE BIGOT?

    I DON’T SUPPORT NATIONALISM, WHY? READ THE STUDIES BY FEMINISTS IN FORMER YUGOSLAVIA,

    WARNINGS THAT WOMYN IN THE WEST, WOULD BE WISE TO PAY HEED TOO,

    I SUPPORTED BISER PROJECT, I WORKED ON BEHALF OF BOSNIAN MUSLIM WOMYN AGAINST THE COMMUNIST UNDER MILOSOVIC, SPEECHES AT A COLLEGE WHERE I LIVED, TO GAIN AWARENESS AND SUPPORT, TO LIFT THE ARMS EMBARGO SO MUSLIMS IN BOSNIA HAD A FIGHTING CHANCE,

    THATS NOT THE WORK OF A RACIST OR A BIGOT.

    THE ONE MAN WHO IS EXTREMELY MISOGYNIST AND WHO IS EXTREMELY POWERFUL IN FAR LEFT IN AMERIKKKA, HAS JUST GAINED MORE POWER,

    AND I JUST GOT WORD TODAY, THEY ARE MOVING FORWARD…

    AND YES, THEY ARE WORKING, WITH PRO-CHAVEZ AND PRO-CASTRO [NEVER MIND THE RISE IN CHILD PROSTITUTION THERE], AND YES, THERE IS ONE WHO IS PRO-AZTLAN,

    WHO TOLD ME, THAT WOMYN BY NATURE, WERE BIO-DETERMINED TO BE A CERTAIN WAY AND MEN WILL BE MEN…YOU HAVE NO IDEA, HOW MANY OF THE LEADERS OF SOME OF THESE EXTREME LEFT GROUPS, WILL SAY THAT, WHEN YOU REALLY GET THEM ON THE ISSUES OF WOMYN’S RIGHTS,

    YET THEY WILL LIE AND SCREAM WESTERN FEMINISTS ARE ALL IMPERIALISTS,

    WHILE THEY VOTE NO ON ABORTION, WHILE THEY ARE APATHETIC TO RAPE, TRAFFICKING, PEDAPHILIA,

    I HAVE THE EMAILS, SEVERAL OF THEM, I’VE SEEN THE HYPOCRISY AND I HAVE SEEN HOW THEY USE PROPAGANDA,
    AND I YES, AM VERY CONCERNED, FOR HOW MANY WOMYN OF COLOR, ARE BEING DUPED,
    DO I UNDERSTAND THEIR OPPRESSION, DAMN RIGHT…
    BUT I WONT BE SILENT, WHEN I SEE AND KNOW OF A MOVEMENT THAT IS FAR MORE SINISTER, FAR MORE DANGEROUS TO ALL WOMYN,

    I FIND IT INTERESTING THAT THE MEN WHO SUPPORT THE NATIONALISTS IN MEXICO [AND BTW, I OPPOSE NAFTA, CAFTA, FTAA, SUPPORT MEXICO SOLIDARITY, SUPPORT CHIAPAS, SUPPORT THE LABOR LEADERS AND HAVE WORKED ON THE CARAVAN FOR JUSTICE FOR THE WOMYN OF JUAREZ]

    BUT THE NATIONALISTS, FEEL NO PAIN, FOR THE WOMAN A DAY, IN GUATAMALA, THAT IS RAPED AND DUMPED IN A TRASH CAN,

    A WOMAN A DAY.

    DON’T, DON’T DARE LUMP ME IN WITH RIGHT WING OR RACISTS,

    I WON’T STAY SILENT AND I WON’T BE NICE.

    NOT FROM WHAT I’VE SEEN AND WHERE I SIT AND WHERE I’VE LIVED, IN THE GUTTERS,

    WITH MANY OF YOUR SISTERS, THAT YEA,

    THE NATIONALIST AND THE JERK MEN AND THE ACADEMICS,

    DON’T GIVE A FUCK ABOUT.

    TASHA

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 8:17 am
  97. Yea i’m PISSED, I SEEN TO MUCH OF THIS IN WHITE MEN’S FAR LEFT POLEMIC, AND A FEW CHICANO MEN WHO ARE SEXIST AS HELL USE THE SAME CRAP,

    FROM MY BLOG, BEFORE I READ THAT..

    YEA CUZZ I SO ‘RIGHTWING’ READ THE ENTIRE THING…

    WHY I DON’T HESITATE TO STICK MY NECK OUT, BECAUSE WOMYN AND THAT INCLUDES WOMYN OF COLOR,

    HAVE NOT SEEN OPPRESSION YET, IN AMERIKKKA, LIKE IS STRONG POSSIBILITY, IF WHO IS WORKING, PULLS IT TOGETHER AND IF THE DEMS KEEP SELLING OUT,

    AND BELIEVE ME, THE IMMIGRANTS, THE WORKERS, ARE BEING USED TOO AS FODDER, AND EXPLOITED, BY BOTH RIGHT, AND YES, LEFT…

    HERE YOU GO…
    Moderation, Control, and Why it Doesn’t Really Matter…

    wow where to begin…

    o.k. for starters, some developments in the far left in Amerikkka, and it doesn’t look good…the hard cores are pulling it more and more together, many now who are EXTREMELY MISOGYNIST, that i know FOR A FACT…

    and who deem FEMINISTS AS BOURGOUSIE, WHITE FEMINISTS ESPECIALLY…who are in SUPPORT OF HEZBOLLAH AND HAMAS AND CHAVEZ…

    and who are working with CAIR and the NATIONALISTS IN THE IMMIGRANTS RIGHTS MOVEMENTS who are yes, very MISOGYNIST AND IN THAT WHOLE MACHISMO CRAP…let me put it this way,

    i was informed by several of the leaders, working behind the scenes who have some POWER, that womyn’s rights are really their problem, that womyn will have to fight on their own and that, well, nature has made it that way….

    in other words, its, ‘men are men and will be men and womyn are by nature things to be fucked and bear children and while its sad, oh well, it won’t change, etc cuzz thats just how it is…or, the ‘men are by nature meant to spread their seed and womyn by nature are meant to take the seed of one man’, no kidding, and that is the mentality of men in far left and no, its not just the white men either…

    WELL ANYWAY…used to be, womyn’s voice, even if minimal was tolerated, in far left, NOT ANYMORE…not unless, ITS PROPAGANDA, FOR THE MALE AGENDA, POLEMIC, AND ANY, ANY DEVIANCE OF THAT, IS NOT GOING TO BE TOLERATED…

    and that was and has been the message of the past six months. Except now, its going to get a whole lot worse…

    and its not just the far left, its the moderate liberal left too…maybe they aren’t as blunt about it but any link to socialism/communism, thats who its going to be…

    priority is, ending war in Iraq [which i concur with]
    ending war in Afghanistan [which i concur with but also know conditions for womyn aren’t going to improve, either way…if anything, its only going to get worse in both Iraq and Afghanistan]
    forming a left hegemony with Castro, Chavez and Iran to go against, US imperialism…and that includes building a hegemony here in the Americas, not just USA…and feminism though they spew it…in reality, this was what i was told…sacrifice of womyn is necessary for the global village…solidarity, over womyn’s rights, because Western Feminism, is IMPERIALIST….

    so, right at this moment, i don’t hold much optimism for womyn in the West or in the Rest of the World….with what i know, i can almost bet, its going to get really nasty, in fact, i KNOW IT IS.

    from a Leftist point of view now, or, perspective not a point of view as I don’t concur with the view…there is a reason for this…

    feminism = the struggle for freedom against rule far left revolution/class warfare = the struggle for control

    two totally different sides of the pole here…one seeking liberation from control and one seeking to overthrow and to establish control and social organization, according to the ‘visions’ of, yes, polemic and theory based on what MEN HAVE PLANNED AND womyn are ‘subjects’ of that plan, not EQUALS…they are ‘subjects’…

    one really has to know far left ideology and the history and the theory to really grasp this because the propaganda says otherwise…and the scary thing is how many womyn fall prey to it…

    underclass womyn especially, because, there isn’t much out there to offer these womyn an outlet to fight not just male tryanny, misogyny but ‘class tyranny’….

    in some cases, yes, womyn of color do have that outlet but even there, its limited…that was apparent in the revolutions in Algeria, against French colonization…only to see Sharia IMPOSED ON THESE LIBERATED FIGHTING WOMYN, WHO WERE RAPED, BEATEN, ALONG SIDE THEIR MALE COMRADES…FIGHTING THE FRENCH…ONLY TO HAVE THEIR MALE COMRADES, TURN ON THEM AND ENSLAVE THEM UNDER THE HARSHEST OF RULE…and those womyn who objected, were taken care of accordingly as the ‘leftists’ would say…

    same for the Tudah Party womyn in Iran…who were immediately, arrested, raped, imprisoned and tortured to death.

    this is just two cases, there are numerous…especially in Africa, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Russia [though it was cleverly masked, one difference though…some of the reversals though hurtful to womyn’s liberation under Stalin, in some ways, they were beneficial to womyn too, especially in regard to the thousands and i mean thousands of homeless children, result of the free sex and total disregard of womyn as human beings under Bolsheviks….though too, under Stalin, womyn were raped by commitern members with impunity, womyn died in gulags, and in former Soviet Blocs, the former Yugoslavia being one of the main ones and in Greece, during Civil War…womyn were raped by communist/socialist men in high numbers WITH TOTAL IMPUNITY.

    but see, none of this Truth matters to the so called ‘feminist left’ because womyn are a low priority…very low, in fact, they are only a priority, when the State Machine, needs children, for labor or for militarization. This is why, lesbians and gays were targeted for purging under applied socialism/communism….

    why socialists today have no qualms in working in solidarity with the most misoygnist men and regimes in the world today…

    and the power brokers of the far left and left movements in Amerikkka are gearing up….and tragically, with the help, of many feminists, radical feminists even–including many GLBT.

    The demise of ‘liberal rights’ in the true sense of liberalism, not what liberalism has turned into which is not liberalism, its materialist hedonism and pc’ism and pacifism and self-enlightened interest with misguided bent,

    is going to be the death of us all. ESPECIALLY WOMYN’S RIGHTS, ESPECIALLY GLBT RIGHTS.

    and why,

    because underneath all this cyberworld blogging and media propaganda [owned by defense ministry and corporations that are if anything, not the allies of human rights, especially womyn’s rights] and television escapism and film ‘programming for desensitization of mass rape, pillaging, and torture, yes, thats what it is….’ for the new order, that Empire, which is Global and sinister, a banality of evil that will make Hitler’s Third Reich look nill in comparison—

    there is an increasing underclass, nationalist class because of NAFTA, CAFTA, FTAA, political Islam groups, working to infiltrate via culture, forget fear of terrorism, this is one area where the right wing is Absolutely right on and this is stated by womyn Fighting political Islam in Iran, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia [changes in control there but things are still dire], Darfur, Algeria, Palestine [they are fighting not only the rise in political Islam extremism but Israel’s Zionist policies and human right abuses too], Lebanon [getting bad there], Syria, Albania [genocide there, against Christians and non-Muslims, Kashmir, India in regions…Pakastan, etc….

    and Yes these womyn are very aware, as are the moderate Muslims, that there are many in the right who are racist and xenophobic and chauvinist…but that still does not deny the dangers of the agenda of political Islamists…

    and yes, poverty plays a huge role, as does, and this is extremely relevant, the US propping up of Shite hegemony, and EU pandering to the extremists for the purpose of ‘votes’, due to population decrease of native citizens and the population increase among immigrant communities due to the structure of imposed low status of womyn, imposed medieval conditions for womyn and girls…e.g., forced child marriages so more children are born, trafficking not only for the enjoyment of men which is sanctified under Sharia under the ‘entitlement to have sex with slaves’ and the ‘temporary marriages’ clause, [for the benefit of men, NOT WOMYN], all for increasing numbers of children born, to build mass armies…

    same damn thing Mao did, same damn thing Stalin did, same reason why right wing Christian fundies want to end abortion AND BIRTH CONTROL AND THE ENDING OF LESBIAN AND GAY LIFESTYLES AS WELL AS FORBIDDING MARRIAGE…its not so much about morals as it is, to increase population of whites, of Americans, as whites are becoming a minority and with the state of affairs today, its not just whites that they want to see populated but Americans, in general…[segment of right wing, politically speaking, that is]

    same damn reason Chavez made it to where womyn got money to ‘stay home and raise babies’, and why Nicauraga, the communists, voted YES to oppose abortion, why in Mexico right now, abortion rights are being fought,

    its not just about ‘womyn’s sexuality’ its about, there is impending war and those babies are needed to replenish…

    the WAR MACHINE AND THE LABOR MACHINERY…

    and of course, MORE SEX SLAVES FOR THE MEN…

    its coming to Amerikkka kid yourself not, the immigrants right groups of Aztlan and La Raza, are pushing for a nationalism, to reconquest and you know in parts they have legit claims, but, there is more to the ‘agenda’ than just justice for past wrongs…way more….

    there is legitiamate reasons, as far as US colonization via military and economics that have kept Mexico and the Americas under the thumb of despots,

    that is FACT, but, the result, is not just for reclaimation, by some in the movement, there is a segment of the movement that is EXACTLY LIKE, THE ‘GREATER SERBIA’ political agenda…

    and feminists have spoken and written on the dangers of nationalism in the former Yugoslavia,

    but do the western feminists take heed? do the far left feminists take heed?

    NO,

    why that can’t happen here, they think…Amerikkkans have been too isolated and too protected,

    but it damn sure can happen here and there is an undergroud movement, MEN, who are working daily, to see that it happens here. These men, the white men in the movement, are egoists, wanna be Stalins and Lenins and gods…they are more dangerous than the nationalists.

    Not all of them, no, the sincere ones, they are being purged right now in parties like there is no tomorrow, and the despots, in the parties, are taking underhand measures, to see that this happens…

    one of those men, is the one who thinks, womyn should be on their knees, lined up, to worship him, he’s a total supporter of the extreme Islam, or when it suits him, extreme fundie Christian…

    and he’s not the only one…there are several more like him, who see no qualms about violent porn, who see no qualms about polygamy, imposing strict regulations on womyn,

    these are angry white men, who feel jilted by the capitalist system, threatened, and yes, some though left, are racist though they deny it…

    and there are a few Latino men, in the far left, that are just as bad.

    so this whole thing with trans and concerts, while important yes, its petty compared to what is ahead of us all, if we don’t pull out head out of our asses and pay attention,

    the tyrannists, who claim worker’s rights, rights for poor, the wanna be Stalins and Lenins and Chavez’s and Castro’s of Amerikkka, will use the poor, the disenfranchised, the womyn, as Fodder,

    they will say what they have to say, to gain support, to the ignorant, especially in the light of the realization that the two main parties vote for the upholding of rich…

    they will be the sheep, that are lead to the slaughter…on the other side, you have the extreme right, who too, fed up with Bush, fed up with capitalism, they are increasing too,

    they are well aware of what the far left is and has been up too…

    it will be civil war, before revolution, if it even gets that far.

    The first impact, will be on the slamming down of the progresses womyn have made, we are already seeing it, abortion, Roe vs Wade, but thats only the beginning.

    I will be posting more on this, as well as from an underclass perspective, because there is not enough awareness, of the increasing of underclass in Amerikkka…

    they are being overshadowed by the immigrants rights which yes, is rightly justified, i concur with, but i also see, how that is being taken over, quite cleverly, by those who could care less really, about immigrants…

    its not immigrants they are concerned with, its votes, [and there is big percentage, nearly 45% i believe, of immigrants from Mexico [saw this on humanist discourse] that are Charasmatic Catholics who are EXTREMELY RIGHT WING, ANTI-ABORTION, ANTI-BIRTH CONTROL, AND FOR WOMYN BEING FORCED IN THEIR PLACE, BAREFOOT, PREGNANT, AND UNDER THE THUMB OF MAN, AS GOD SEES FIT…

    thats why Bush wants them in guest workers program, its not just left…its right wing too…

    nevermind that immigrants and non-documented workers are the most exploited, especially the womyn, than the poor in Amerikkka.

    why the Underclass, both immigrants, whites, blacks, asians, mexicans, etc. need to throw off the reliance on vanguards,

    and rise up, but they can’t do that,

    if they don’t know.

    that includes feminists and radical feminists…to point these truths out, is immediately being labeled as racist, bigot, etc…

    because the agenda of ‘programming’ has done its work well…the French, caught on, which pissed the far left in the west off big time…but Royal, was accomodating to misogynists, Sweden is allowing Sharia, in hopes that one day, the extremists will be merciful…

    the Eastern communists, who KNOW, have warned, but they are few…as communism even, has been taken over, by nationalists, chauvinists, some of that the remnant of Stalinism, some of it a mix of anti-semitism/nationalism combined with anti-capitalism,

    today, anti-globalization.

    The Greens, if they don’t fall sway to the pressure of the far left, have a damn good chance in building the Green Party…

    why its Vital, Imperative, for radical feminists, for womyn’s rights activists, to be very aware, watch the discussions of far left parties, pay attention to the influence of ‘bias’ in the left…

    you KNOW there is something up, when there is no protest, against the recent attacks on womyn in Iran, due to fear of appearing in cohoots with racist right wingers…or because hey, the lets stay silent on anything that is contrary to anti-US…

    that is VERY DANGEROUS, ITS SUICIDE, FOR WOMYN’S RIGHTS, POLITICAL SUICIDE…

    but on the same side, the neglect on class issues, is contributing to the rise of the power brokers…and that is where I am going to focus attention on,

    not on trans, not on this issue or that, but on the underclass and rise in poverty…especially womyn.

    because WE ARE RUNNING OUT OF TIME…

    WE CAN NO LONGER AFFORD, TO JUST PUT THESE UGLY REALITIES, ON A BACK BURNER OR ON SHELVES OF OCCASIONAL SYMPATHY…

    IF WE DON’T TAKE ACTION, THE DESPOTS WILL, AND TRUST ME, THEY ALREADY ARE. AND IT WILL BE THE BODIES OF WOMYN AND CHILDREN,

    THAT ARE COLONIZED, BRUTALIZED, SOLD, BARTERED, BETWEEN THE WAR DOGS.

    Tasha

    OH, AND NOT WANTING TO SEE THIS, WON’T KEEP IT FROM HAPPENING…BECAUSE THE NUMBERS OF THE FAR RIGHT AND THE FAR LEFT ARE INCREASING EVERY DAY,

    AND AMERIKKKA IS THE MOST HATED COUNTRY IN THE WORLD,

    AND IT WILL BE THE WOMYN AND CHILDREN, WHO WILL PAY DEARLY, AND THE RICH AND THOSE WOMYN IN THE POWER STRUCTURE, THEY WON’T BE BOTHERED, THEY HAVE THE FUNDS TO FLY ELSEWHERE…AS IN EVERY REVOLT,
    IT WILL BE THE POOR, JUST LIKE IN IRAQ, WHO WILL BEAR THE BRUNT,

    OF DECISIONS, THAT WHITE MEN, [WHO REALLY ONLY FEAR FOR THEIR OWN ASSES] AND MEN OF COLOR WHO ARE FED UP AND SOME WHO ARE ELITES AND WILL SELL OUT THEIR OWN, FOR POWER, THATS POLITICS, SORRY BUT THATS HOW IT WORKS…DECISIONS THAT EITHER WOMYN LIED TO ASSISTED OR WOMYN WHO HAD NO IDEA,

    OR WOMYN WHO WERE AFRAID TO BE THE LONE VOICE, BECAUSE TO POINT TO THINGS THAT AREN’T ‘STATUS QUO’ IN EVEN THE STRUGGLES, THAT AREN’T ANTI-US ARE DEEMED NOT WORTHY OF LISTENING TOO,

    WHO DO YOU THINK MADE IT THIS WAY? MEN, TRANS ARE THE LEAST OF WORRIES IF YOU REALLY WANT TO KNOW THE TRUTH…THEY’LL SLAUGHTER THEM WITH WOMYN, RIGHT EXTREMISTS OR LEFT, DOESN’T MATTER.

    MAY NOT HAPPEN IN TWO YEARS, MAY NOT HAPPEN IN FIVE YEARS, BUT REST ASSURED, EITHER A REVOLT WILL HAPPEN, OR A FASCIST GOVERNMENT THAT WILL MAKE WHAT IS GOING ON TODAY LOOK LIKE DISNEY LAND.

    AND I’M NOT THE ONLY LONE VOICE WARNING OF THIS…

    TASHA

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 8:39 am
  98. The topic of this thread is concerning Colonization and co-option so I would like to add this comment.

    Imo, how about if we add the co-option of words such as lesbian and dyke.

    At what point in time were females consulted during this process when persons born biologically male, made their decision to claim and re-define our words for females with same ‘sex’ attraction, dyke and lesbian? When were we consulted as to whether male to female attraction is called lesbianism and the participants are now dykes?

    Why were our words re-defined and not new words created by males who have sex attractions for females, new words they created for themselves, to name themselves? Why were our words for female to female attractions targeted as disposable, malleable to include those born male?

    I am not interested in debating a person’s identity, the validity of what identity their brain creates, what identity they assume, possess or claim, what gender they lay claim to in opposition to their biological sex (biological sex being immutable). I am pointing out how our words for ourselves have been taken over and that the privileged power class of man/male has re-defined words such as dyke and lesbian to include those born male.

    When were the people of womyn, those of us born female ever consulted with and when did we reach an agreement and approve of this change? When did we decide, as females, that dyke and lesbian no longer meant females loving females, but that our words for ourselves are up for grabs and can be redefined by any male who so desires?

    Is this not colonization, co-option when a privileged class (males, men) move to re-dress natives, occupy their space, land, place those indigenous in segregated places, corner them off, force new language and new words, new definitions and meanings to their ways of communication, their ways of being?

    The potential end result is, for example, with the word dyke, a word that those of us born female spent many, many years reclaiming, is meaningless and is now defined by others, by those born male. It is rendered meaningless for females because males have decided that they also can be dykes and lesbians.

    And again, should a dyke (female) say a word in protest of having her words and land attacked, ripped away from her, the male aggression towards her will escalate, as is the method used by persons socialized as males, boys, men to control those of us born female when we resist.

    And who is doing this? Which persons, born male, are now demanding the forced re-definition of the words dyke and lesbian to include them?

    Can you hear me now?

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 12, 2007, 9:23 am
  99. Greetings Sisters,

    This type of struggle has been my key politcal activist focus for over two years now.

    Biology is not destiny but it is part of identity. Many of us in Australia are refusing to be “actively trans inclusive in lesbian only space. Trans are welcome on mixed spaces and public spaces but not welcome in lesbian only space.

    Our current definition of lesbian is “woman, who was identified at birth as female and who was raised as a female and who is recognised as a lesbian by a lesbian community” and we are defending our human rights to our valid gender identity of “real woman”, “woman born woman”, “actual woman” and that trans have their valid gender identity rights to be trans. And we will defend their gender identity rights to the identity trans.

    Perhaps there will be enough of us to start being on committees to organsise events that are not so proactively trans colonised that actual women are excluded.

    I do not recognise that there is a disease or syndrome called transphobia. Actions in support of women born women’s identity rights are not triggered by this fantastically ridiculous invention of pop psychology . Actions in support of woman born women’s valid gender identity rights are created because women born women know the value of women only and lesbian only space. We have the right to create and exist within this space as we choose.

    Spiderily

    PS These are my views, and I will defend my views in every court, up to and including the International Court of Human Rghts. This website is not responsible for my views, although it is pleasant to see commonality.

    Posted by She, XX, a real woman | June 12, 2007, 10:32 am
  100. SisterSpace is celebrating her 30th anniversary this year as one of the nation’s longest running lesbian festivals. The issues raised by Boston cancelling Bitch’s performance (Bitch btw was scheduled to play SisterSpace this year until a conflict came up, maybe next year!) are all related to positive, pro-active discussions that are and need to continue to go on in the lesbian community. These issues, along with intergenerational communication are something SisterSpace has been exploring thoughtfully and by searching within our own community has opened inspiring dialogue that seems to be growing into partnerships, renewed activism and re-energizing women’s voice. Thank you for posting and having this space and allowing women to respond – I strongly encourage anyone able to join the SisterSpace festival this year – it seems the right time for our community. You can visit the website at sisterspace.org

    Posted by Jordan | June 12, 2007, 2:02 pm
  101. We also had Alix Dobkin join us last year as a performer and important part of these discussions, and this year we have Alix Olson, Pamela Means, Ubaka Hill and the Shapeshifters, SONiA and disappear fear, Divine MAGgees and Ashley Phillips performing in addition to countless workshops including our “Old Dyke, Young Queer” (nicknamed ODYQ) forum which is hugely popular and a raved about discussion group at the weekend that really bridges gaps, answers questions and carries our community forward.

    Posted by Jordan | June 12, 2007, 2:26 pm
  102. Tasha – um, we’ll agree to disagree for now because we’re obviously not going to see eye to eye.

    uppitybiscuit, She – “biological sex being immutable” “‘real woman'”
    There are lots of women born women who might not be considered “biological women” – whose uterus/ovaries/vagina are missing or nonfunctional, who have XY chromosomes, who don’t menstruate, who can’t have children – but I doubt that’s gotten them a day of male privilege in their lives. If a woman with XY chromosomes, who had been raised as a girl and identified as a woman, was also a lesbian feminist and wanted access to a woman only space, would you refuse to let her in?

    Heart – sorry, I was sort of huffy and tired last night, so I might have been kind of rude. Thanks for welcoming me here (and for filling out my radfem demographic survey) but I think it’s a good time for me to leave right now.

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 12, 2007, 3:13 pm
  103. litterolmermaid,

    thats fine, btw, you’d be surprised to at how many times essays regarding the Comfort Womyn [and issue I work on btw] were ‘rejected’ by the very ones who so proclaim solidarity with feminism…

    as for Atzlan, they are a fringe group, there are FAR MORE DANGEROUS WHITE RACIST GROUPS in Amerikkka that I’d be a tad more concerned with, you can monitor them on Hate Watch.

    I am pro-immigrant btw as well, in fact, not only am I pro-immigrant,

    I would support a People’s Revolution[Maoists] over this ‘elitist’ vanguard Anyday…let the Shining Path speak for the Americas…

    funny though you never hear from them much, the Elites who will oppress their own, make sure of it. [regardless the Maoists and no I don’t mean only RCP are growing in numbers, many of them womyn, and I will say one thing for the RCP, they don’t tolerate sexual harassement, like some of the other left parties do…and in Nepal,

    the Maoists are fighting the traffickers…the Womyn Maoists Rebels. Some flaws in Maoism granted but in comparison to what I’ve seen, womyn have a better chance under Maoism if it comes to that.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 4:01 pm
  104. Hey, thanks for that information, Jordan, much appreciated. 🙂 Although I’ve had it with these events which are thousands of miles away from me, argh. Snort. Mumble. How come there is never anything like this nearby to me!

    Littoralmermaid, there are, in fact, female people in the world. And they — we — have every right —every last right on this Goddess’s green earth — to gather as a people, free from harrassment, intimidation, bullying, and being kicked out of our own events and venues by male people and people whose allegiances are more to male people than female people. Being female never turns on whether someone menstruates and so on. Females who do not menstruate or have ovaries, etc., are just females who do not menstruate or have ovaries or uteruses. They live in this world knowing that’s precisely who and what they are and what it means to be that in a world which expects and demands certain things of females.

    As to the theoretical woman with the theoretical XY chromosomes who tells us all — and demands that we believe it — that she was raised as a girl, and who identifies as a woman and tells us she’s a lesbian feminist and so on? If you are interested in learning about this, please pay attention to the women in this thread who are describing their experiences to you. Do some google searches on the topic here, and over at Feminist Reprise and at Yawning Lion’s place. Do some reading over at Vancouver Rape Relief. Learn about lesbian herstory, lesbian theory, lesbian feminism.

    Feminism — and radical feminism — is about the full humanity and civil and human rights of female persons, first and foremost. When the day has come, as it has, that men, males, and non-lesbian women are kicking lesbian women out of their own organizations and venues, are causing material harm to lesbian women on the scale that it’s happening now, that indicates a return to male heterosupremacy. That indicates a return to patriarchy. That phenomenon has nothing whatsoever to do with feminism, and certainly not with radical feminism, or with what is progressive, with what will liberate women. That has to do with active harrassment and oppression of lesbian women, already a tiny, oppressed, and marginalized group.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 4:06 pm
  105. Heart covered what I had composed in my next post as an response to your question Littoralmaid.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 12, 2007, 4:11 pm
  106. Sorry for the misspelling, I meant littoralmermaid.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 12, 2007, 4:12 pm
  107. Dang, Uppity, I’d have rather read your comment!

    You know what I was thinking about? The anti-radfem contingent often likes to drag out all sorts of mostly-inaccurate tales about the way feminists they describe as “white Second Wave feminists,” (which isn’t accurate, but I’m talking about the spin, the propaganda now) called lesbians the “Lavender Menace” and tried to kick lesbians out of NOW and the feminist movement back in the day.

    I wonder why they think this is any different?

    I wonder why they think that herstory (as opposed to history) is not going to record this time in feminism as a time in which lesbian feminists were kicked out of their own events and venues by people who called themselves “feminists.”

    Heart

    Posted by Heart | June 12, 2007, 4:23 pm
  108. one more thing, reading your post…it was sort of a blur last night as all i had to see was right wing

    i have never implied there isn’t racism or that white womyn have a monopoly on suffering, so not sure where you pulled That from,

    obviously posts i’ve written have not been read, thats clear now…

    but i don’t just talk about hieriarchies…and race yes is part of that — but it AMAZES me how very few want to bring up CLASS, and like Misogyny CLASSISM RUNS THROUGHOUT EVERY RACE, CULTURE, ETHNICITY AND RELIGION.

    btw, the claims to and, by Atzlan and La Raza are Legit, and i concur with most…ETHNIC CLEANSING, I DO NOT CONCUR WITH, NOR DO I CONCUR WITH MINUTEMEN, BLACKWATER, INTERNMENT CAMPS AND ALL THAT OTHER WHITE RACIST CRAP…

    GET THE MIDDLE MAN OUT OF THE STRUGGLE, LET THE PEOPLE, SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES, NOT THESE ‘PUPPET MASTERS’, i grew up in the South, worked the Maize fields with my Chicano Sisters and Brothers, you know NOTHING about me except I mention something so you immediately lump me in…

    that to me sounds a bit narrow, but i will say this, i don’t care really what race or religion, when Class War surfaces, I will be on the front line, with the rest of the poor…on That I stand firm. Not with whites, not with this anti-Eurabia…and not a problem with womyn having children, AS LONG AS ITS NOT FORCED, OR FORCED ABORTIONS, IN OTHER WORDS,

    MEN, HANDS OFF OUR UTERUS, PERIOD…AM I AGAINST THE ROMAN CATHOLIC INFLUENCE IN MEXICO AND THE AMERICAS THAT HAS LIKE USA WITH THEIR SCHOOL OF AMERICAS AND THEIR MILITARY FUNDING OF DESPOTS AND HISTORY OF AIDING NAZIS INTO SOUTH AMERICA WHO BECAME SOME OF THE LEADERS, PINOCHET RING A BELL,

    DAMN RIGHT. THEY’VE DONE ALL IN THEIR POWER TO KEEP THE WOMYN AND PEASANTS POOR, AND REFUSING BIRTH CONTROL AND IMPOSING PREGNANCY WAS ONE WAY THEY ACCOMPLISHED THIS…

    I’m NOT IN SUPPORT OF ZERO-POPULATION EITHER, ANOTHER ‘WHITE RACIST AGENDA’

    but i won’t sit in solidarity with misogynists and nationalists who impose pregnancy on womyn and do nothing when there as masses of STARVING CHILDREN AND STREET KIDS, THAT BTW, OLE RICH LIKE TO SEXUALLY EXPLOIT, IN MEXICO, AMERICAS, CENTRAL AMERICA AND THAILAND…IF YOU WANT TO TAKE IT THAT FAR…PHILLIPHINES WHERE THEY SHOOT THESE TRAFFICKED CHILDREN AFTER THEY GET AIDS, FROM BEING TRAFFICKED AND RAPED, BY

    PAYING MEN AND YEA, SOME PAYING WOMEN IN THAT WHOLE ‘TOURIST SEX INDUSTRY’…

    and when the ‘Maras’ come up [gangs from El Salvador, former STREET KIDS WHO KNOW THE LIES AS THEY GREW UP WITH THEM THE BETRAYALS, AND AS FAR AS I’M CONCERNED, POETIC JUSTICE O.K.]

    yea the whole ‘defense’ of these nationalists that its justified to impose pregnancy [and hey, guess what, those whities you referring to, are White Nationalists, why do you think they are doing same thing?]

    have on Both sides, no issue with exploiting children, sexually abusing them, raping them, letting them sleep on the streets and in cardboard boxes [and you can see them not only in Mexico but in AZ and CA, look under bridges at night, thats when they come out] AND THESE KIDS ARE HUFFING GLUE TO COPE…

    you know, the KIDS would be in their RIGHT TO TURN AND REND THOSE WHO PUSHED THAT, TO PIECES,

    and its just for That reason, why you have the drug cartels [who traffick womyn from the Southern Cone into AMERIKKKA, AND THE SAME ROUTES ARE USED TO TRAFFICK KOREAN AND ASIAN WOMYN, VIA ROUTE CANADA AND MEXICO]

    because when you grow up with that, you don’t care…its dog eat dog, coyote against coyote, and you know,

    its the PUPPET MASTERS WHO CREATE THAT MESS…THOSE NATIONALISTS, THOSE ‘FOR THE RACE’

    white, brown, doesn’t matter, same crap. and I won’t support neither.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 4:26 pm
  109. Well Heart, I am sure you will get an ear full of my comments soon enough. (Gimme an R!)

    This is a good time to take notice of happenings around us. I am waiting for the 20-something crowd of womyn to weigh in. I would love to hear a generational take on co-option and colonization.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 12, 2007, 4:31 pm
  110. R!
    😀

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 4:43 pm
  111. The following responses made by Bitch in an interview have been described as “transphobic” and thus, reason that Bitch, a dyke, should not perform at the Dyke march.

    This is also why the word “transphobic,” as you suggested, sparklematrix, is pretty much just meaningless, it’s just an attack.

    ***
    Begin quote from Bitch interview:

    Do you get shit from the trans community for playing at Michigan?

    Yes, from parts of the trans community. People who think there aren’t trans people at Michigan are so fucked up. If someone tries to tell me [Michigan] is transphobic, I tell them to stuff it. There’s so many trannies there. And it’s not trans people being marginalized. It’s people who were born as men. The festival is for people who suffered a girlhood. That’s all it is. They’re not trying to redefine what women are. I think it’s really ironic, I don’t see nearly as much activism around all male gatherings. I’m sure everybody over at Camp Trans are not protesting all the all-male gatherings that happen all over the country all the time. It is so the patriarchy. I’m so over it. I think it’s totally the patriarchy and it’s complete ageism.

    How so?

    Because going to Michigan is like going to another country. These visionaries set up Michigan for six f**king days out of the year. It’s not like they’re trying to make a city. They want to have a party with only these kinds of people. They’re our elders. They had a vision. When I was younger, I had a stereotype of what an older lesbian was. I thought they were nerdy, wearing purple all the time and walking around with their hand drum that they can’t play. And then when I went there I had my mind blown by what an intellectual, what a survivalist community it was. If my elders want to say for these six days only these kinds of women can come, then I need to respect that. It is so against our nature to respect women for having boundaries. I think that’s exactly what’s happening.

    I had the same experiences as a white girl at Michigan. I felt blown away that I couldn’t go to the women of color events. I felt very entitled about it and very pissed off. And then I had to be schooled about it. I met this Black woman at a meeting and I told her I wanted to go to that, I feel it would educate me to be less racist. And she said sometimes people need to section off and they need to be with people who’ve had similar experiences so they can come out into the bigger community and be stronger people. I really had to respect that.

    When me and Animal were on the scene, the three bands that people were going after were Bitch & Animal, The Butchies and Le Tigre. Ironically enough, the three bands that all have trans people in them, calling us transphobic. When I think of all of the girl energy/the raised female energy going into protesting that event when they could be getting the education of a lifetime and coming out into the bigger world and being such amazing trans activists. I would never go to a Black Women only event and demand that I be let in. I support us respecting our elders’ boundaries.

    http://lesbianlife.about.com/od/lesbianmusicians/a/BitchInterview_2.htm

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 5:34 pm
  112. Tasha, I just wanted to say.

    Damn.

    You know your stuff, woman. You really do.

    I am really enjoying getting to know you.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 6:04 pm
  113. MWMF is a WOMYNS festival. Its not a TRANS festival. I happen to have a trans past and i don’t indentify as trans. I am a womyn. I support womyns right to privacy. Danielegrl / Danielle Clarke
    PS: Out of respect for a dear womyn (KCblukitty) i have stayed away from MWMF because i care about that one womyn. If i am to respect womyn as i say i am one then i must respect one who feels my presence is invasive to her life. That however, doesn’t make me any less of a womyn to myself.
    12/06/2007

    Posted by Danielle | June 12, 2007, 6:50 pm
  114. Well Heart,

    its from evolving from the underneath, why sometimes i still struggle with that class anger, especially if like there is the invalidation of white womyn, as well as womyn of color, not only oppressed under patriarchy, but Class Priviledge too, then that ‘red’ in me starts to boil,

    haven’t totally forsaken the class war just don’t concur with the traditional venue of class warfare…[because there is serious flaws and thats a whole other debate/post] and too, i am very aware of racial oppression and its linked with class oppression but differs too, the entire labor history of this country was futile for reasons of racism, AND nationalism…

    not everything about nationalism, national pride, ethnic pride is bad, its when its taken to the supremacy extremes whether via hegemony or via revenge which sure, there is legit anger there…but its very easy for the ‘agenda seekers’ to manipulate that and its always been that way, from the forming of nation-state,

    duping the masses, controlling the masses, for the sake of rulers, elites, empires, etc. i started out as one of the ones who would shoot first if there was revolution and ask questions later, thats how much hate i had in me…so i understand where that comes from and sure it crops up now and then BUT,

    after years of college [where i studied international politics, cross comparisons and ethnic conflict with minor in Russian/history, etc, revolutionary politics [international and historical] , environmental resources/resources, some gender studies/sociology, etc., as an ‘underclass low income single parent student still living in projects’ and i was always pushing the boundaries of study, meaning i noticed how even in academia, the ‘courses’ are controlled just enough, to stir up the ‘anger’ but not enough to encourage students to look beyond their views, including yes, opposing views [and one issue i have with the manipulation of multi-culturalism…teach ALL of it, across the board, not singling out one as all that does is feed nationalist racism, not only that, the more you study across the board and do comparisons, you more you see threads and that includes the rise in white nationalism/European nationalism too, all which, derived out of socialism and anti-empire prior to WWI.] So yea i do look at even some of the groups that i detest…one to know whats going on, know what is contributing to, to connect common threads and to understand and to work on viable solutions that are geared to human rights [but even in that, i struggle sometimes, as i can relate to the underclass anger…that misery, that social question that Hannah Ardent referred to articulately — the woman was a genius in that regards,

    and there is a real lack of history as far as going deeper, and connecting the dots, as well as lack of herstory…today its ‘pick and choose’ whats convenient for a political agenda and even in the far left, there is infection of this, what i call infection, from conflicts, misery, nationalism, broken peoples…you can’t have suffering like that on a mass scale and there not be inherited infectious thinking.

    The one thing about the struggles in America and this includes Chavez is the tendency to neglect how the migration of the Nazi’s [with US help now] after WWII, has contributed so much, to the conditions, PLUS, even prior to that, the US and not just US, but French, Spanish colonization of the region, [but mostly US, Pres Wilson, prior to that…and still going on today] with the assistance and influence of the Roman Catholic empire [and that goes all the way back to Aquinas, a mega money laundering and keeping the masses under ‘control’ and in that, Marx was right…[though he was no god either no matter how many left like to make him that way]…

    robber barons and power barrons don’t care, they may hate each other, war against each other, but i bet if we could see the Swiss Banks [accounts] and be flies on the wall at the Conventions, Global Business Trade Agreements, the world’s masses would be ‘reeling’ in shock…right, left, nationalists, liberals, centralists, neutralists, theocracists, etc.,…in regards to political power, its about control of resources [including people] and the masses are the ‘pawns’ in the game…

    thats from political, add patriarchial analysis to that, and it becomes more clear, but it works in degrees and separations as well, why the oppressions are interlinked as well as separate. And there is that ladder, that level of racial oppression within Amerikkka, but also, on a wider geo-political scale and this, when one delves into this aspect then the hypocrisy of nationalism comes in…because the neglect or little mention of the lowest of the strata, becomes apparent…

    we hear a lot about Mexico right now, but little if any on Haiti, a colonized still nation that is tens times worse as far as Brutal Government/or Military Regime Repression, and Poverty that is the equivalent of Somalia and the Congo. We don’t hear much, about the racism within races, thats like classism, its that dirty little panty that is like, kicked aside, but its there nethertheless, and class plays a huge role in that…

    i support the immigrants rights but not in the goal that the ‘elites’ who are the power brokers over the platforms do, right and left on that…i would rather work for worker’s rights and human rights on Both sides of the borders, as well as confront the buying up of land, resources, labor in Mexico, with the welcoming arm of the government there, [right and left corruption] by the rich land barons/developers not only from US but Europe and yes, Asia…there are 1800 US corporation sweatshops in borders of Mexico, stripping local economies, but, its not just US, there are transnationals from Asia and Europe and Middle East there too…no counted numbers though, I asked at the last anti-sweatshop conference i attended and no one knew exact numbers,

    why the struggle has to be ‘global’ and not just isolated to ‘anti-US imperialism’ which yes, there is truth in post-colonial but its like, well did you ever see the tv movie Alias? [yea i know silly show but amusing sometimes] but when Sidney first went to the CIA and thought she knew all about SD-6, this terrorist organization, well her handler showed her the global map of how big SD-6 really was, it was everywhere,

    well thats similar to what we have today, used to be, it was US imperialism or British Imperialism or European or Asian [in regions] and during epochs…

    that was the SD-6 Sidney, like many today, thought was the culprit and could be easily done away with…but we live in an interconnected and interdependent economic world, global, and transnationals [yes with US hegemony as a superpower and EU and Asian Tiger and Middle East and the OIL],

    the Imperialism is not, connected like a giant labyrnth, why boycotting here or striking here, is futile, as they just move the slave production to another area…and why its happening in Amerikkka too, insourcing, outsourcing, soon the world’s masses, will be in the same boat, and the one thing I noticed,

    is the creation of ‘buffer zones’ which is, a global ‘middle class’ that will soften the blows, they’ll allow them certain worker’s rights, not do liberate, no, to make it much harder, to challenge the global economic structures. Its not so much I disagree with the struggle of far left, on this, its that the means and analysis is in many ways, very outdated,

    the tools to fight are outdated, BUT too, in that, necessity often overrides luxury of planning. Why we see the rise in extremism, its one thing, even for me as part of the underclass in Amerikkka [and even the poor here, in comparisons to poor in Africa or India or Asia — parts or in Palestine, etc] are PRIVILEDGED, not that poverty here isn’t suffering, no, it is, but in looking at it from a detached [which is hard to do but for discernment is necessary] view in analysis, there are some resources here, where as in many of the regions of the world, there is absolutely no hope and the only choice many have IS violence, they have nothing to lose, they’ve already lost everything. And the despots and demi gods, KNOW IT, that power vacuum, those strings pulled by the world power brokers.

    And rallying around ‘race’ is one of the tactics the power brokers use, rallying around ‘patriotism’ or rallying around yes, even ‘class’ but the pawns are just that, pawns, easily sacrificed, used as human shields, human bombs [Sri Lanka, and its womyn and children that are used, one example…but on other side, these same womyn and children are used by the ones holding power, either way, they lose, so sure, some will say, better to sacrifice, than to sit and suffer, at least though, the guerrillas give them synide pills in case they are caught so they can avoid torture, yea horrible isn’t it, to be left with those choices]

    every nation differs too, and why revolt in Amerikkka, will be similar to the divisions in the former Yugoslavia, there is the history of racism, and not just racism but racial oppression that yes, is Brutal…was Brutal, Class Priviledge in this country was built on racism, genocide, colonization and religion and yes, patriarchy…and its still going on, just the manifestations are a bit different…

    and yes, in some ‘points’ the right wing, even those racists that i am in opposition too, are right on some points, just as far leftists are right in some points…there is no monopoly on truth, the agendas yes, are different and they are all guilty of using truths to further agendas, to further or protect priviledge or racism or political machinery…just as outside interests, effected by the mess in Amerikkka, also have their agendas, and many are working right here in Amerikkka…

    and its always the average joe, susy, gabrial, sophia, etc that are the ones caught in the middle that bear the brunt,

    its the poor, who are left to suffer, the citizens in Iraq right now, who haven’t been fortunate enough to flee, are the POOR, there…or the Marginalized [Assyrian Christians, Kurds, Sunnis and Sufi’s, etc],

    the other POOR are the enmass ‘refugees’, the largest number of non-state peoples in the world today are REFUGEES and they are MARGINALIZED, OPPRESSED, EVEN DEMONIZED in the countries taking them in, in fact, not too long ago, Iran declared that all Afghan refugees are to leave,

    they have no where to go…refugees in Jordan, from Afghanistan, and thats not Even beginning to disclose the REFUGEES in Africa, Europe [hey WAR is going on right now in Albania/Kosovo, except now its reverse, now its political Islamists and Nationalists killing Serbs and Christians…raping and trafficking…and then, you go to the opposite side of the pole, Chechnya [you don’t hear any protests by either political Islamists or Leftists on that], they are committing GENOCIDE AGAINST MUSLIMS THERE…GENDERCIDE, deliberate killing of boys and then Russians in Militaries raping Russians, raping MEN, Gay Men…its not just US military…doing command rapes,

    and Russians are so broken and poor, that military is one of the few means of survival, so they are caught, in the middle…and its all for Caspian Sea and OIL…

    meanwhile millions of girls/womyn and boys trafficked to Arab States, USA [those Russian Brides] and to Europe, Amsterdam to fill the brothels of hell, guarded by the ‘legal’ dogs of hell, those prisons of cellars where the rich including the religious rich, pay to rape, torture, with impunity…womyn and children from Russia, Poland [and i speak to a man from Poland who says its really bad there with the trafficking] and from Asia, India, Bangledesh, Kashmir, Pakastan…

    its a worldwide black market [that is also, government tied into, all governments…all…not just white, not just US, ALL GOVERNMENTS including Iran, Mexico, Korea, China, etc]

    and there are ‘socialists’ who legalize this crap…in Holland right now, they [gov] are concerned with, oh, what are we going to do when these ‘surplus’ sex slaves get too old and are filling our streets, oh, we can’t have that, that would be bad for tourism…so NOW they are asking for millions to send them back once they are discarded like used trash…

    send them back to Where? to What?

    why support of Porn is not just about censureship, its ABOUT RACISM, GEO-POLITICAL RACISM AND CLASSISM,

    because if the truth were known, how that industry, not only feeds governments via taxes [when made ‘legal’ shit its not for protection of prostitutes and sex slaves, its for the purpose of TAXATION…and protection of Cartels and Johns and creation of ‘social acceptance’ of slavery without question, a global Roman Empire and the slaves are the gladiators],

    an industry that yes, Racists and Nationalists can barter and trade womyn and children, while supplying the demand of MEN, to rape the ‘enemy’ with IMPUNITY and yes, some women too…while making profit that not only profits

    business, it profits guess who? Guerrilla groups, cartels, black markets…

    right and left, including yea, those ‘for the race nationalists’, and ‘for the revolution guerrillas’ [Columbia good example and Central America]

    all one has to do is look at the cases right here in Amerikkka of womyn trafficked to be forced sex slaves, from Mexico and the Americas…the list is HUGE, numerous cartels busted in Texas and all the way to New Jersey,

    [and hell, thats not even a third, there is the domestic and labor slaves too]

    but its the POOR who are victims, easy targets, worldwide, its the POOR, and that is why, the nationalists, the racists, the power seekers, fear the POOR [not just womyn now, they fear that too] getting that consciousness outside of vanguards and race and religion,

    if they get that consciousness, they know, there will be a rising up. so yea, the ‘puppet masters’ that manipulate truths of racial oppression in Amerikkka [and globally too] are almost always that buffer zone, that middle man, that elite, [read Ngugi, Africa, or Colin Morris, Africa, Fanon, or Mass Terrorist Network Latin America about US terror there…can’t recall author, Donnelly is sugar coated, though good, but that book is vivid with unclassified references to the history of US involvement in terror/fascism in Americas],

    a friend of mine from India [Maoist, her father/mother in Maoist party there, she lives in Canada and she is very upfront about the rampant sexism in the communist and maoist circles…and she is correct] but she told me,

    that the revolution, will be bourgousie at best…and she is very aware of what nationalism is, the reality and brutality of, the betrayals of, and the same for left politics and religion…

    most of what i know from international is years of reading outside of college of revolutionaries and womyn and theories from developing [what used to be termed third world] countries..and indigineous writers [whose struggles i am in solidarity with as they speak volumes about the hypocrisy and about the power vacuums as well as the environmental damage and womyn’s rights, etc]

    and it is no surprise, that nationalists, those who rally around ‘race’ or [nation borders or religion, its not aways race] [brown or white or black, doesn’t matter] all have a strong resentment towards indigenous peoples…there is reason for that. They expose the racism within race/borders/religions…

    to confront racism its not just enough to confront whites, though thats a huge part of it…but its not the total —
    we must confront all forms of racism, nationalism [the negative] and class, and the structures that support and prop these ladders and power hegemonies up.

    and that means exposing All of it. and womyn especially have something in stake in this…

    its womyn, who are punished, who are the battlegrounds and why,

    my theory is this: womyn can bear children of every race…not just plant seed of one race.

    thats why nationalists and men hate womyn, [not all men but patriarchs/misogynists]

    womyn have that ability…why the study of the Rape of the Womyn of Sabine is important…[myth and fact/art and fact]

    and when one really looks at that, boy its apparent, why the power brokers, want to control womyn’s sexuality, either in pushing for babies or ending babies…it is ALL connected,

    and the babies, for mass armies, or for labor…so someone/s can have power, empire, and wealth and armies to fight that and reconquest or conquest, etc. and Religions, have all, expanded that way…as so have Regimes and Empires.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 8:30 pm
  115. sorry to take up the board, i dont’ know how to put up new posts here…[had a few from Iran but anyway]

    just wanted to add, we hear a lot about trafficking of sex slaves and labor,

    but one of the fastest and money making trafficking industries globally today is,

    trafficking of ‘organs’ taken from sometimes still living poor, marginalized [some groups in China for example, the Fulong something, read this on a human rights watch],

    and sold via black market, and this is a HUGE BUSINESS THAT IS GETTING WORSE. These markets pay the poorest of poor and marginalized in parts of Europe, Roma Gypsies, Hungarians, Romanians, etc pittance for like kidneys, etc then sell on black market…but now, its coming out, that there is rise in POOR and Hated minorities having organs taken by force, and sold…

    this is a very real danger, threat, and there is not enough coverage…and with the rise in refugee populations [that industries are already targeting for sweatshops, fashion industry being one of them/check out Morocco and North Africa, the go between place of refugees fleeing misery to try and get into Europe, the fashion empires are targeting them for piece meal work]

    so its not just trafficking, now its also, butchering for organs so some rich or powerful can be healed of disease, those who can afford to pay $$$…

    and there was a show, in Holland I think, that the intent was the audience was to ‘vote’ now on who gets an organ transplant…of three contestants, then, later they said it was a hoax,

    but was it? Nothing would surprise me…nothing. and this is why i decided to focus on class issues internationally, as well as in Amerikkka,

    and to write on them. Never forget, the poor in Amerikkka, white included, many of them, womyn, dont have time, or even computers, to say what they are dealing with…

    I can’t speak for them as far as like knowing all their experiences, that would be paternalist, and invalidating them, but i can speak from my own and from what i know…and yes, as a white woman that has endured, not just patriarchy, but under Class Priviledge too…[and why i won’t let that reality be shoved into a closet even if yea, it is offensive to some, so what, its real…and it needs to come out because to deny the existence, is also denying the continued poverty of womyn of color…under Class Priviledge, not just Racism, though its both…it is BOTH]

    but anyway, wanted to add the organ market…its horrid, and there needs to be awareness of.

    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 8:52 pm
  116. What number 5 said!

    I wasn’t going to comment, because I just found this blog today, and I am hetero so I’m afraid to tread on territory where I may be seen as an invader in a safe space. But I wanted to offer support, too! This is unbelievable to me! Again, number 5 articulated my thoughts perfectly.

    Transwomen can cordon off events for transwomen only for solidarity, and biological females should be able to do the same! The truth is that all their experiences are not all my experiences, although our humanity is the same. But I would go to a womyn’s event for kinship with those who suffered what I suffered, which in no way diminishes that I think transwomyn suffered a lot by being born in the wrong body. Re: the binary role comment: that is precisely why transwomen are sometimes not permitted in all safe spaces set up for biological females! Even with the privilege of being white and raised in a middle class neighborhood, I have dealt with horrendous misogyny, not the least of which was the violation I felt by being fetishized as some sort of patriarchally fabricated caricature to be deconstructed and lusted after as an aesthetic experience for transwomen. Nevermind being constantly leered at as a walking uterus who could menstruate, which somehow meant I embodied the ultimate submissive porn-fantasy object. It was as bad, if not worse, than the sexual harassment I’ve gotten from men, which is precisely what I’d be hoping to escape for just ONCE in my life by attending an event like that! I feel more dehumanized and mythologically gendered by transwomyn than any harmless boy I’ve dated! That’s not transphobia– that’s autogynophilia fetishizing the the cultural notions of my body as a commodity, and my brain bound by personality traits assigned to me that I don’t even have. Give me a break.

    Posted by K.A. | June 12, 2007, 11:00 pm
  117. btw Thank you Heart,

    i’ve enjoyed getting to know too and many womyn on here,

    thank you too for letting me share, i realize that some of the things i bring up probably do cause a stir,

    and yea i am working through some crap and anger at the same time…i’m no angel, actually i read several of the blogs here to the right and i feel sometimes ashamed,

    that i do have the feelings i do, and i think, o.k. now why can’t i be more like her…

    but i realize too, that there is a place for all of us, that our experiences though different as they may be, are important, and are interlinked…though there are times i don’t see it that way and its like this space, this space that sometimes is like i am on this outside of this glass–

    but then too, i’ve in a small way, put myself there too [its complex]

    how much of that is age and hindsight, i dont’ know, sort of sucks,

    i want to add though, the inspiration section blogs on here…are a joy, a guilty joy in ways, reminder in other ways, but a joy and so much beauty [i’m learning that now, how not to feel ‘guilt’ over beauty, guilt from poverty and knowing and guilt from growing up and all the stupid shit i’ve done or traps i’ve gotten myself into or been forced into, etc]

    how to work through all those internalizations–thats the real struggle for all of us i think

    and its easy to project them [and yea i do, i admit..i do, off and on, i swear its like being dr. jeckyll and dr. hyde]

    but i learn so much here reading and writing out thoughts as well not just about life but myself [and sometimes it exposes more than i want to see]

    i don’t know if i’ll always be able to write as much, it comes and goes in spurts, time availability, [and i tend to neglect some needed work to write…probably NOT a good thing]

    i’m getting that book on Spinsters but i’ll wait till i can find it used [know that has bad as it cuts into profit for hard work but affording wise, i have to be selective….frugal, thats another thing about poverty and guilt, it hurts all womyn because it takes away ability to be able to support womyn’s work…you know–]

    and just for the record, i don’t hate people who have more, you know if it wasn’t for people who had more [in this system] the poor would really be screwed…programs to help would be screwed, and just for the record,

    another fact, poor people can be just as greedy and selfish, its not some character of rich or well to do and the poor are like these saints…i’ve seen poor steal from poorer, in shelters, etc…projects,

    its the individual…so when i bring up class its the system and support of that system…

    just like those who deal with racial oppression, poverty oppression, its just as easy to stereotype and generalize and yes i’ve done it…and it is a prejudice, that has to be confronted, Every time,

    its really easy to generalize. but it doesn’t help anyone, and it doesn’t get to the root of the problems…one thing i learn and still learning,

    hate is easy, forgiveness and love, is not so easy,

    love isn’t passive, love doesn’t just say, oh yea this is horrid and goes on,

    but love too, doesn’t just see the dark and refuses to see the light and thats the biggest war there is,

    in our hearts i think…yea and i write this and i think i am Such a long way off, its so easier said…

    maybe just being aware of that, is a start.

    Peace, Love,

    Tasha

    btw, i posted this on blog this morning, a woman singer, saw her in the Persian Journal, her song really uplifted me so I’m going to share it here,

    for all of you…for all of us,
    http://www.bodogmusic.com/nazanin/

    listen to SomeDay…and check out her story

    Posted by Tasha | June 12, 2007, 11:12 pm
  118. Heart-
    Sorry I couldn’t resist the siren call of the thread I said I’d slammed the door on.
    I wasn’t talking about transwomen. I was talking about women with androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS).
    (I’m not an endocrinologist, so you may want to look up more information on this elsewhere)
    But as far as I know, with AIS a fetus has XY chromosomes but cannot process testosterone. When the baby is born, she has female genitalia and is assigned as a girl; a lot of times the parents have no idea. The condition is usually discovered when said girl (who has been raised as a girl and gotten all the crappy social conditioning that entails) does not menstruate at puberty.
    So if she discovers that she has XY chromosomes, internal testicles, no uterus and no ovaries, does that negate the ~15 years that she’s spent as a girl?

    Posted by littoralmermaid | June 12, 2007, 11:13 pm
  119. Littoralmermaid–

    The issue you raise (and have attempted to raise more than once in this thread) is not relevant to the issues at hand. This is not a thread about what makes a girl a girl. This is not a thread about the connection, if any, between biology and gender. This is not a thread about whether gender is socially constructed or innate. This is a thread about the right of female persons to our own spaces and about anti-lesbian, anti-woman activism on the part of some transgender activists which has caused real harm to real women.

    The condition you describe is also known as “intersex.” It occurs in a minuscule number of persons. Unfortunately, those persons have far too often, as with females, had their realities annexed and appropriated by the transgender movement, or certain expressions of the transgender movement, without their consent, just as far too often they’ve had their bodies “treated” at birth (or later) by patriarchal medical doctors without their consent. Their issues are interesting, but they are not germane to this discussion.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 11:42 pm
  120. Fwiw, and this is really getting more into the diversion of the thread than I want to, if an intersex person has lived all of her life as a female and a girl, then she’s going to be welcome at the Festival.

    If that is your question, then there is your answer.

    The Festival is for female persons who have lived all of their lives, from birth, as females, girls and women and who have always identified, and been identified, as such.

    I realize you are new to the blogosphere and possibly to radical feminism. I don’t want to blow you off; at the same time, having navigated six or seven years’ worth of this type of discussion, I have come to recognize how they get sidetracked and into issues that distract from issues of concern to females.

    I urge you, if you haven’t, to, again, read what is available at Feminist Reprise, Vancouver Rape Relief, here on my blog, over at Yawning Lion’s site. The issues you are interested in are addressed in each of those places.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 12, 2007, 11:48 pm
  121. I’ve been upset about this censorship for a couple of days and have really appreciated this thread being out there. Voices are so silenced, these days. I do think it’s about to change, not just in our community but in national discourse.

    I want to say, if it is appropriate, that the question of censorship and discussion around trans issues has arisen at Alison Bechdel’s website today as a result of a strip she just posted. In particular, in the comments thread, those who don’t toe the trans party line are receiving the usual attacks and shouting down. But, I noticed tonight, someone brought up the question of Bitch and the Dyke March there. So, for those of you who express yourselves well (in particular, you, Heart), you might want to share your voice on a national lesbian blog. It’s easily Googled, or at http://www.dykestowatchoutfor.com/index.php

    If this is not appropriate to share, I apologize. Thanks for what you’re offering here.

    Posted by Maggie Jochild | June 13, 2007, 5:30 am
  122. Hey, thanks for the heads up, Maggie Jochild. I went over and checked it out. There again, lesbian space, overrun by people discussing transgender issues, filling up the comments threads with information about hormones and medications and so on, as though those should just be assumed to be central or even important to most lesbian lives, lesbians silenced and attacked for suggesting maybe taking all of those hormones and medications and so on is not a good thing, for a whole bunch of reasons. Really disturbing. I’m just glad the one commenter had her say in there. I’ll keep an eye on that thread.

    Thanks again, and I’m glad I found out about your blog, too! I’ll add you to the blogroll. 🙂

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 13, 2007, 12:17 pm
  123. Re: AIS woman at Fest.

    Not a problem.

    Posted by Branjor | June 13, 2007, 5:17 pm
  124. Back from reading around.

    How did the Dyke March morph into the everybody-and-anybody-who-thinks-himself-to-be-queer-and-progressive march?

    I think we are going to have to leave these events to that crowd and create our own in ways they cannot be annexed, appropriated and destroyed.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 13, 2007, 8:39 pm
  125. I’m still thinking about the comments here and thinking that it’s important to be aware of just how much effort is sometimes put in to destroying women only spaces. It took me along time to feel comfortable with claiming, alongside other women, our own space. Claiming such power feels like the biggest betrayal against male interests and as someone who had only just started developing consciousness about male dominance I found this disloyalty to men utterly repulsive.

    I see separatism, to whichever extent it is practiced, as fundamental to women’s liberation. Anyone who argues that there are reasons why women should not claim and maintain spaces of their own does not share the same political perspective as I do at the most basic of levels. Anyone who tries to gain access to a space I claim as my own – regardless of the means – is trying to destroy that space.

    When males state that they by virtue of identifying as ‘women’ are entitled to occupy women’s spaces they are trying to destroy those spaces. A woman only space that is occupied by males is no longer a woman only space. This fact is only immaterial to any and all who deny the existence of women; any and all who, in other words, are men or dedicated to male dominance.

    Those ‘transwomen’ who demand access to women only space are not abiding by the principles from which these spaces were created and this matters because it shows clearly that the integrity of women only spaces is deemed of no consequence. This is no small thing.

    Posted by Arantxa | June 13, 2007, 8:47 pm
  126. Heart said:

    “I think we are going to have to leave these events to that crowd and create our own in ways they cannot be annexed, appropriated and destroyed.”

    YESSSS! (( Heart ))

    I have never before (except in my own head and to my own self) heard another lesbian say that.

    Now it begins.
    🙂

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 13, 2007, 9:09 pm
  127. Yeah, Arantxa and Mary Sunshine.

    Really, this is what always happens with revolutionary movements in the U.S. They get co-opted, appropriated by the people who have the power and want to keep it. I’ve seen it time and time again. That process is why what passes for the “Left” right now is what was the “Center” in the early 70s, or even right of center.

    Autumn Sandeen was taking a neutral position, huh? See, I should always follow my first mind.

    Whatever.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 13, 2007, 10:09 pm
  128. Heart said:
    ***I think we are going to have to leave these events to that crowd and create our own in ways they cannot be annexed, appropriated and destroyed.***

    Another big YESSSS! from me.

    Didn’t I say that too?

    Posted by Branjor | June 13, 2007, 10:48 pm
  129. I’ve loved reading everyone’s comments – and as a 20-something trying to learn the herstory of lesbian community and find ways to actively create more opportunity for it to exist I find the viewpoints and experiences encouraging. To me, it’s only recently that we as a community have even begun to explore intergenerational differences – it’s been huge to have women with experience share their stories and politics so that I can better examine what’s going on now. As a 20-something, until I found places for intergenerational interaction I was bombarded with queer-identities and trans-politics and before I knew it I was swept away in ideas that aren’t my own experience. Being a part of these kind of discussions with women of all ages has been huge, life-changing for me. I know I’ve said this already….but I really can’t tell you how much I’d love to see all of you at SisterSpace this year.

    A side note – I noticed a great deal of transmen in the philadelphia dyke march this year. To me, there’s a difference between being an ally who supports from the sidelines or is a voice of advocacy within their own community (or who doesn’t march but stays behind to hand out water or water ice….as the radical fairies do in philly), and someone who thinks that being an ally is being a visible presence and active member in something that is not a part of their identity or experience. The entire point of things like “lady fest” and the dyke march are for women to claim identity, community and leadership and for everyone else to watch. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with saying that or talking about it but as someone who’s part of the “queer generation” it is definitely something that gets lost and isn’t talked about much among my age group – which is why the words and experiences of other generations are essential – if you’re not already sharing these things with women out there, I strongly encourage you to do so in your immediate communities, colleges, universities, etc.

    Posted by Jordan | June 14, 2007, 6:03 pm
  130. To me, there’s a difference between being an ally who supports from the sidelines or is a voice of advocacy within their own community (or who doesn’t march but stays behind to hand out water or water ice….as the radical fairies do in philly), and someone who thinks that being an ally is being a visible presence and active member in something that is not a part of their identity or experience. The entire point of things like “lady fest” and the dyke march are for women to claim identity, community and leadership and for everyone else to watch.

    Jordan, exactly! I was thinking about this just yesterday, that if it were up to me, I would probably hand-select a men’s auxiliary of men I knew did support us who I knew could be trusted to *be* supportive in specific ways. What we’re seeing now is something like, “You’re not telling ME what to do, I’ll do anything I want, including kicking you to the curb, telling you who you are, speaking for you, and punishing you if I feel like it.” :/

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 14, 2007, 6:17 pm
  131. Hi Heart,

    Great idea! Then … do the men on our side declare war with the men who oppose us? Our opponents have definitely declared war on *us*.

    Will we have knights in shining armour?
    🙂

    Just having fun here …

    Mary

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 14, 2007, 8:16 pm
  132. Mary Sunshine said:
    ***Just having fun here …***

    Silly girl – Trix are for kids!🙂

    Posted by Branjor | June 15, 2007, 12:37 am
  133. There are a couple of really good comments to that thread I linked to today at Pam’s House Blend that one of the writers has alerted me to:

    http://www.pamshouseblend.com/showDiary.do;jsessionid=9D18172F1288C6227C78458D9965E56C?diaryId=1971
    🙂

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 15, 2007, 4:39 am
  134. Around the world, some LGBT groups have removed the ‘T’, to have the T off on their own, as I think is best. They have created LGB organizations to serve the original group, people with a sexual orientation that varies from heterosexuality. I see this as a trend, although in its infancy, building momentum as a wide spectrum of eyes are being opened. The Transgender Movement and more importantly what their Trans Activists spread as a message about lesbians, dykes in addition to how we are treated by the ‘T’ faction of the LGBT *should* be noticed. The LGB would be better served to analyze what adding the ‘T’ has done or not done to the quality of and/or overall focus the LGB.

    The ‘L’ portion of the LGB saw early on that the Bs and especially the Gs were not interested in womyn’s issues. Add the T faction, a group whose activists openly attack the L and look at the result of how the focus of LGBT has been changed and energy directed away from sexual orientation issues, further directed away from womyn’s issues and directed towards trans issues.

    The transgender movement, imo, is a postmodern political position where the movement believes, “If I think it in my head then that creates an individual reality and makes me ‘right’, and within my individual reality, alternative viewpoints are not acceptable.” “My individual thoughts top any World reality.” Pomo actually has little basis in true reality regarding our collective World. In fact, when aimed at womyn it is a blatant attempt at co-opting and marginalizing the experiences and lived her-stories of females with the concept being, “I think it, therefore I am”

    The Representatives of the Trans Movement in the form of Trans Activists utilize a fascist ideology to go after dykes/lesbians, feminists and again, none of this is any good for womyn. This fascist ideology takes shape, is witnessed and documented by Trans Activists whose goal is to dictate and control womyn through harmful methods.

    Fascist ideology is a system of harming others for your own gain and we have evidence enough to allow us to see, acknowledge and know that trans activist operate from fascist ideology. The level of aggression and harm the transgender movement is willing to inflict upon dykes, lesbians, our events, our Land and our gatherings shows their ability to exercise any amount of domination and control to harm dykes/lesbians and to justify all of this by saying that this is within their right as long as their end goal is met. That is fascism at it most basic level.

    Trans activists operate from several political positions. One position is misogyny which justifies and maintains the subordination of women as witnessed by their control over the Boston Dyke March and includes levels of aggression such as the actual physical, material harm to womyn such as Bitch.

    Trans activists will often shout, “VICTORY!!”, along with “We WON!” whenever they have launched a particularly violent and vicious attack on womyn/lesbians/dykes when as a result of their attack they believe themselves to have caused enough harm that they were successful with taking over and/or otherwise erasing/controlling a dyke event, a womyn’s gathering or caused visible harm to a dyke/lesbian/womon that stood in their way.

    This is the evidence of Fascism, an ideology which believes that it doesn’t matter who you harm, whose neck you have under your boot as long as you get what you want. Fascism is directly opposed to feminism, peaceful demonstrations and discussions. This is illustrated by the Trans Activists’ in your face name-calling, shouting down of womyn who dare to speak, spreading lies about feminists, censoring womyn’s voices, art, thoughts, expressions and causing material harm.

    Womyn, lesbians and dykes especially will, imo, be better served to thicken up our skin around the entire name-calling tactic that comes from the trans community. The name-calling initially worked for the trans activists as a tool to subordinate, control our discussions, divert our energy as their name-calling placed some of us in a defensive mode. Womyn, feminists, dykes spent far too much energy with those diversionary name-calling tactics.

    Issues concerning womyn, feminism were diverted, stalled while we were giving energy to trans persons, the ones attacking us and we didn’t get as much done for ourselves as we might have accomplished. The patriarchy *loves* diverting feminists’ energy and this may be behind their general push to have a trans-positive spin presented to the general population. The males in power only get behind movements which they can manipulate, use to their benefit and advantage, in this case, the trans movement, which they are shaping into another tool for keeping womyn subordinated and controlled. Those being used as tools of the patriarchy rarely see what is happening when the manipulation is in its early stages.

    Some womyn have caved and imagined that womyn’s, lesbian’s and dyke’s lives would not be changed or affected, or if changed that change would be for the better, so they caved to the attacks, name-calling, threats, the pressure, the bullying of the trans activists and began to say, ‘This is a trans inclusive event’. They told themselves, “Oh yeah, this is cool, it’s okay, it’s hip.” The sell-out, the caving produced a hearty round of “We won!” and “Victory!” from the trans movement and their activist.

    Look around and witness the end result of saying that being female does not deserve honor and respect. Look at what happens, happened and will happen when dykes, people born female, cave and allow others to run our events, to determine who we are, what our words such as ‘dyke’ mean, what we do and where we do it. Look at what happens and who is harmed when people born male and those who claim to be men control our events.

    We, those born female, the dykes, lesbians and womyn are told our thoughts are wrong, our language is wrong, the events we create for ourselves are wrong, the words we use are wrong and in essence that we have no agency to live our lives and therefore become invisible.

    Uppity

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 15, 2007, 11:29 am
  135. I find that it becomes a grey issue because there is a movement to disassociate from any sort of gender so it leaves a great group of younger “queers” not claiming identity to lesbian, woman, trans, etc. More trying to achieve an ambiguity to tackle the social perceptions of gender and refusal to conform identity to any group. So I end up encountering a great deal of friends who for lack of a better word are “casual males.” They haven’t made the decision to transition fully, are in some cases contemplating it, some cases aren’t, some cases dress and use male pronouns but aren’t transitioning with hormones, some cases occasionally use hormones and claim identity within a dyke community.

    At SisterSpace one woman asked for clarification of the term “queer” she heard all of the teen-twenty-somethings using and it was eventually explained as a word that is more inclusive than lesbian and belonging to all who have an identity or politics that are outside of hetero-normative society. It was agreed that that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but a woman asked what did we think that meant for feminism, and could we also consider that by removing lesbian, feminist and other woman-centered terms from our vocabulary that aren’t we losing the “woman” from the discussion and the movement. That idea really opened my eyes – several of the women from previous generations cited examples of other movements and time-periods where this happened and I started to see for myself that when the going gets tough it is woman’s identity that is the first to get dropped.

    I often wonder if it’s just a lack of understanding of history and feminism and women’s experience in general that has made the political movement of “queer” take off and become a place for women to identify without realizing the hopes of feminism it leaves in the dust.

    Maybe i’m being too dramatic….but has anyone experienced anything similar?

    Posted by Jordan | June 15, 2007, 1:56 pm
  136. Uppity,

    Brava! Brava! Brava!

    My hope grows by the day when I hear words such as yours.

    Mary

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 15, 2007, 2:34 pm
  137. Hello all… I cannot email this to heart, cant access my personal email at work😦 but I wanted to share SOME good news about Boston. My bestfriend and I were screaming our heads off when we heard about this.🙂 Actually even here at work yesterday, many people in my office are GBL, we were shouting and hi-fiving and such.

    http://wbztv.com/local/local_story_165065928.html

    The news is……………….

    THE LEGISTARURE HERE IN MASS HAS OVERTURNED THE VOTE TO BAN GAY MARRIAGE!!! I know we are talking about a very different sort of issue here…. and I dont mean any disrespect, but I just wanted to share this, anyway. I hope you can all join in celebrating this monumental achievement here.

    This case reminds me of Loving v. virginia… the same should apply here as it did in that case.

    OK shuttin up now, but thank you.

    Posted by Divine Purpose | June 15, 2007, 3:33 pm
  138. QUESTION FROM READING THIS:
    “Trans activists operate from several political positions. One position is misogyny which justifies and maintains the subordination of women as witnessed by their control over the Boston Dyke March and includes levels of aggression such as the actual physical, material harm to womyn such as Bitch…”
    “Trans activists will often shout, “VICTORY!!”, along with “We WON!” whenever they have launched a particularly violent and vicious attack on womyn/lesbians/dykes when as a result of their attack they believe themselves to have caused enough harm that they were successful with taking over and/or otherwise erasing/controlling a dyke event, a womyn’s gathering or caused visible harm to a dyke/lesbian/womon that stood in their way.
    This is the evidence of Fascism, an ideology which believes that it doesn’t matter who you harm, whose neck you have under your boot as long as you get what you want. Fascism is directly opposed to feminism, peaceful demonstrations and discussions. This is illustrated by the Trans Activists’ in your face name-calling, shouting down of womyn who dare to speak, spreading lies about feminists, censoring womyn’s voices, art, thoughts, expressions and causing material harm….”
    Totally concur,
    but question..[btw i’m doing a bit better from the triggers, but will comment on it later]
    Regarding trans…is the majority of the ‘idealization of being a woman’ from the trans based around the patriarchial ‘sexual concept’ of what womyn are or should be rather than, the feminist defining of who womyn are in opposition to traditional male definings??
    Because from posts from trans it sort of comes across that way… the whole fascination with glamour and the ‘submissive sexuality to men’ etc…
    and if that is the case then that surely would seem like in total opposition to the spirit of radical and woman identified feminism/lesbian feminism, etc.
    the whole thing with gender ‘ambiguity’ to me seems like another means of making feminine traits [woman identified, not patriarchial] invisible, and if there is invisibility then there is impunity to oppress…in a way its like, trying to make a ‘racial ambiguity’ and i’ve seen this in ‘some’ far left ideologies/and past applications and its a fallacy because…
    its ‘ambiguity’ that is defined by white majority [in the whole attempt to deconstruct humans into being this one sameness, the borg–under a global hegemony of consumerist globalization [which could be done under capitalism or state capitaiism/corporatist fascism].
    In other words, its like a psychological means of race genocide, or racial ‘erasure’…and it to me is the same when the extremes under ‘ambiguity of gender’ is attempted as a means of ‘woman erasure’….
    see on this i see and concur with the self-determination of peoples [within respect of human rights], because assimilation and forced assimilation/that works to form ‘erasure’ is really,
    and extension of a type of ‘eugenics’….
    Why i stress Literolmaid, that not everything about nationalism is bad…we need to accept and embrace differences, and i think we can do that, and face the history and change the priviledge, be it racial or class or gender, and nation-state/that geo-political racism which IN TODAY’S WORLD, NEARLY EVERY COUNTRY IS GUILTY OF…that ‘ethnic hatred/ethnonationalism/conflicts and genocide in part]
    and we can do that in respect to human rights and womyn’s rights without the ‘erasure’ or ‘pyschological genocide’ and forced hegemony…of which i oppose strongly,
    and which today is being accomplished via consumerism, on global scale, the most hegemonious thing there is…global mass goods, that is destroying cultures, Japan, good example, and we see young womyn prostituting themselves to buy ‘Gucci Bags’ in Japan, for example…because they don’t want to work at McDonalds [and who can blame them…its low pay] and its the ‘pressure’ to assimilate into western ‘ideal’ which is done through clever manipulation via marketing…and what happens is traditional art/culture eventually becomes a thing of the past, devalued, invisible…[why you have the fundies rising up, not just religious–why Bhutan, a country that is still rich in their culture is fighting the encroachment of westernization mass consumerism]
    there is no balance…and yes, it does seem, when you open the door to include, to cooperate, then the fascists, barge down that door and consume the life, the essential life, and like space martians [you know those movies…analogy here] they suck up the life and turn the people into pods…
    so the whole thing with ‘ambiguity’, i would have to ask,
    is ambiguity really just a fascist means…? Now i think there are extremes on both sides, you can either have protectionism as a means of ‘protection priviledge within the own group’ or you can have ‘assimilation that another is working to take ownership and erasure’…
    and maybe why inclusion, though good, if not carefully checked, can be the end…like, take certain plants for example, you can plant various ‘different’ plants by each other and they can be beneficial to each other, but if there is unbalance…then one can over take the other and thats why they are termed as ‘weeds’…
    but plant only one plant, like the way they do cash crops, you eventually will see the death of the entire crop because of all the over time disease and erosion, etc…like tomatoes for example, because there is not a different variety of plant to ward off certain pests, etc…
    and i think nature has it this way to Teach us, but humanity doesn’t really pay attention,
    to close, as the trigger, it was building up, the reason i detest ‘nationalism’ in the extreme or how its used to ‘protect horrid abuses’ is that when there is umbalance, there is destruction…not just to others who are different, but to their own nationality…
    take Yugoslavia for example…we heard, in the West, the horrid human right abuses committed by the Serbs, granted, there was so much fact and truth, and it wasn’t just men, sad to say…
    but most, do not know the History, of the Serbs, and if you really study the Horrors that the Serbs have suffered, from not only the Ottoman Empire but Germany, Russia, Austria, Hungary, you know Serbia lost more civilians during WWI than any nation of people, and the largest concentration camp that was used by the Nazi’s, against the Serbs, was used to slaughter children…
    and now look at where the Serbs are at today, they are again, being slaughtered, raped, killed in Albania and Kosovo [and the West is being very silent on this]…
    and its all the result of nationalism, against them, and nationalism that they were fighting for…and its been generational and the womyn who have suffered tremendously, on all sides, the numbers are horrific…
    today, i see so much about white priviledge that yes, is so true…BUT IT DOESN’T GO FAR ENOUGH…[and may i just say, in the extremes, when its used by ‘nationalism in the negative way’ it totally neglects the whites that were very anti-racist and very anti-slavery…one in fact, a Christian man, can’t recall his name, want to say Brown? but he actually led a ARMED REVOLT in Amerikkka against slavery, he was an absolute radical, he was shot dead of course…but its amazing how most don’t even know of these people today]
    but point is, now we have GEO-POLITICAL ‘PRIVILEDGE’ and the USA is the top and its not just whites, its whites, blacks and browns…
    every time you go to the store and its not just Walmart, everytime there is that bling bling, every time there is the purchace of food,
    remember, ITS MADE BY SLAVES….the TOURIST INDUSTRY AND THE BANKING, IS FUELED BY SEX SLAVES,
    jewels, from child slaves, literal slaves, womyn in Congo, not just being raped, but the militias are taking guns and shooting them in the vagina…
    these computers, children in Africa, Malaysia, digging through heaps of toxic computer waste, for companies like DELL,
    diamonds, feeding the Blood Trade in Africa and its not doing a whole hell of a lot for the AIDS EPIDEMIC NOW,
    NOT JUST AIDS, AN AIDS EPIDIMIC THAT IS LITERALLY WIPING OUT ENTIRE COMMUNITIES IN AFRICA…
    THATS RACISM….THE WORSE KIND OF RACISM THERE IS…
    in this generation, we’ve seen GENOCIDE IN RWANDA, DARFUR, NIGERIA [IN PART], ZIMBWABIE [IN PART], SIERRIA LEONE [HORRID WAR, FOR YEARS], CHECHNYA, COLUMBIA [GENDERCIDE HIGH, KILLING OF BOYS], SOMALIA,
    this isn’t even a half…and they are ALL connected in someway,
    to our PRIVILEDGE, AND HEY, THATS TO ALL RACES IN THE WEST, THATS TO ASIA [THE ASIAN TIGER], THATS TO REGIONS IN MIDDLE EAST…
    [why the 50s post-colonialism in some of the nationalist groups today, used by far left…does not address the global geo-political racism that both right/left have contributed to, via arms sales, guerrilla warfare, mercenaries, propping up and assisting political religions to terrorize or to prop up by the means of ‘rules of engagement’, that clever way of ‘respecting nation-state soveigntry which feeds human right AND ESP WOMYN’S RIGHTS ABUSES]
    and how is this relevant: to this discussion on trans/woman’s spaces…
    look at the womyn’s ngos and small organizations, coops of womyn worldwide, fighting not only for womyn’s rights but against globalization, against nationalism [the negative], against
    erasure of gender, culture, ethnicity.
    so i ask, is there a danger, in the ‘global consumerist ‘means of’ multi-culturalism and gender ambiguity DECONSTRUCTION in the means to the end of creating a global mass slave race?
    and this can be cleverly accomplished too, through a mass global ‘corporatist capitalism’ under a type of socialism…
    [lets not forget, there are two branches of socialisms, one Nationalist–13 varieties of fascism, Weber] NOW MULTIPLY THAT ON A GLOBAL SCALE…
    why the fourth and fifth worlds, are the ones being attacked and not just attacked,
    but a social genocide is being applied, to create ‘erasure’ of both indigineous peoples and of womyn’s culture…of womyn,
    something to think about…
    as for the trigger, i still have that ‘street’ in me big time..but the reason, the thing that infuriates to the point of violence, is the ‘tolerance’ or ‘accomodation’ of porn and prostitution…because it is
    the BIGGEST GLOBAL ‘RACIST’ SLAVE INDUSTRY IN OUR WORLD TODAY…
    so i will say it, LOUDLY HERE,
    ACCOMODATION AND TOLERANCE AND SYMPATHY AND APATHY, INDIFFERENCE AND THAT INCLUDES ‘ENABLING THE INDUSTRY WITH ALL SORTS OF MYTHS ABOUT EMPOWERMENT OR THAT, WELL THOSE WOMYN OVER THERE ITS DIFFERENT…BLAH BLAH BLAH’
    OF PORN, PEDAPHILIA AND PROSTITUTION, IS IN FACT,
    THE RACISM OF THIS CENTURY…TO ENABLE THE ‘DEMAND’ FOR THE MARKET,
    IS NO DIFFERENT, THAN THE ENABLING THE DEMAND FOR THE SLAVE MARKET IN AMERIKKKA,
    NO DIFFERENT, FROM THE STANDING AROUND THE SLAVE AUCTIONS AND MAKING THOSE JUSTIFICATIONS THE WHITES [THOSE WHO MAJORITY TRAGICALLY, SUPPORTED] DID, WHEN BABIES WERE RIPPED FROM MOTHER’S WOMBS, WOMYN WERE RAPED BY WHITES, MEN WERE BEATEN UNTIL THEIR SKIN PULLED OFF…
    NO DIFFERENT.
    the majority of SEX SLAVES [and why LEGALIZING PROSTITUTION AND THE STUDIES IN HOLLAND, ITALY, AMSTERDAM HAVE PROVEN THIS…] protects Johns and Cartels and BlackMarket and Business/Gov (those perks and tax revenues),
    not the prostitutes and slaves,
    protects Johns from AIDS, not the slaves…why the demand for HIV FREE VIRGINS, child prostitutes is high, why you have the Red Light Districts of millions,
    of children and young womyn, WHO ARE 70% PEOPLE OF COLOR, OR FROM ETHNICITIES HATED OR FROM NATIONS FALLED TO POVERTY, LIKE RUSSIA…
    its not just about sex industry, its ABOUT SLAVERY…
    [and domestic/sweatshop slavery part of that whole market]
    not just WAGE SLAVERY, BUT CHAINED SLAVERY…trafficked people are BEATEN, GANG RAPED, GIVEN MEDICINE TO TORTURE, STARVED, FAMILIES THREATEN, HELD HOSTAGE TERRORIZED…
    SLAVERY…
    and its SLAVERY FED BY NATIONALISM TOO, THE ‘PRIVILEDGE ENTITLEMENT/CLASS/RACE/RELIGION DESIRE TO RAPE THE ENEMY’
    I have seen many trans posting their support of prostitution…and some wom’e’n,
    and it is, part, of that whole Corporatist Priviledge Fascist Mentality…
    and the lines need to be drawn,
    NOT JUST WOMYN’S RIGHTS,
    BUT EITHER YOU ARE FOR THE SLAVE MASTERS,
    OR OPPOSED TO THE SLAVE MASTERS,
    AND IN TODAY’S WORLD, THEY ARE OF EVERY ETHNICITY, CREED, RELIGION, AND CLASS.
    THE NEED FOR WOMYN’S SPACE, TO FIGHT FOR WOMYN’S HUMAN AND CHILDREN’S RIGHTS, ON A GLOBAL SCALE, IS MORE IMPORTANT TODAY,
    THAN IT HAS EVER BEEN.
    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 15, 2007, 3:59 pm
  139. Another random question – how many women reading or participating in these posts attended a Dyke march this year or took part in organizing one?

    Posted by Jordan | June 15, 2007, 4:44 pm
  140. not so much random i guess – just something i was curious about and wondering because I’d love to hear from women’s experience with other lesbian organizations/activities/organizing/etc.

    Posted by Jordan | June 15, 2007, 4:47 pm
  141. “we also consider that by removing lesbian, feminist and other woman-centered terms from our vocabulary that aren’t we losing the “woman” from the discussion and the movement.”
    I just noticed this…
    so, lets see, we aren’t losing “woman” from the discussion,
    on the Contrary, THATS EXACTLY WHAT IS BEING DONE…
    and this was Exactly what i was referring to the to two somewhat ‘subtle hostile’ takeovers of two organizations here in the city in which i live…
    1. the HOSTILE take over of the HOMELESS STREET NEWSPAPER by the GLBT ACTIVISTS/CLICHE, AND IT IS A CLICHE
    2. the SUBTLE HOSTILE take over of the Womyn’s Studies department at the college i attended and is not the GENDER STUDIES/GLBT WITH MOST ADAMENTLY NO ANDS IFS ORS BUTS ABOUT IT, DISCRIMINATORY AS HELL TO
    a. het womyn
    b. single mothers/non-traditional students who are more than likely to be low income as hell/or womyn of color
    c. and in some aspects femme lesbians/and bi’s
    so, take the latter example, what has happened as a result,
    RAPE AWARENESS AND CHALLENGES TO THE MENTALITY OF ACCEPTANCE OR DENIAL OF RAPE, HAS BEEN SO NEGLECTED THAT TAKE BACK THE NIGHT IS LIKE THIS MINIMAL THING NOW
    GAY ISSUES ARE A PRIORITY, THE ONLY PRIORITY AND OVERSHADOW ISSUES THAT EFFECT WOMYN, SUCH AS CHILD CARE, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, JOB DISCRIMINATION, POVERTY, ETC
    as for the results of the Homeless Paper being taken over,
    what USED TO BE A PAPER OWNED BY THE HOMELESS, PRINTED ON CHEAP PAPER/IN A SOUP KITCHEN,
    OF TONS OF ESSAYS, POETRY AND ART THAT WAS THE VOICE OF THE HOMELESS BY THE HOMELESS,
    HAS BEEN BUTCHERED AND REPLACED WITH EVERY OTHER ISSUE THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH HOMELESSNESS/POVERTY,
    AND THE WOMAN’S VOICE, THE HOMELESS WOMYN, HAS BEEN FORCED TO THE BACKS STREETS AND ALLEYS OF INVISIBILITY
    ONE PAGE, THE BACK WITH A LIST OF SOUP KITCHENS, THATS IT
    AND THE HOMELESS WERE RAPED, LITERALLY RAPED, THEIR DIGNITY, DUMPED ON…
    I HAVE NEVER FORGOTTEN NOR WILL I FORGIVE IT,
    IT WAS THE WORST INJUSTICE…
    SO, NOT TAKING ‘WOMAN’ OUT OF THE EQUATION,
    I BEG TO DIFFER.
    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 15, 2007, 5:32 pm
  142. addition to the above,
    first, i am pro-lesbian and pro-bi, and pro-poly [as long as its consenting adults who choose without coercion], pro-monogamy [as long as its non-patriarchial and its what the partners choose], etc…
    so let me get that out of the way…
    i think, and i was thinking about this right after i typed the above, but i think,
    where the problems lie, is in this, and i’ll dare say it…cuzz i know many think it, [and it all ties into society changing/progress/globalization and how work roles are changing, etc] population control/environmentalism and i’m referring to the Euro-centric-Malthusian model [of which I concur with people of color that it is a sinister under sweet face of white eugenics], That agenda in environmental/Malthusian model, which is one segment, not the entire movement…and the Deconstruction of family to meet those corporaratist requirements]
    where gender ambuigity falls in,
    is it,
    1. abolition of patriarchy
    or
    2. abolition of heterosexuality?
    Now DON’T GO BITING MY HEAD OFF HERE…seriously, think about this…
    because there is that movement out there and it is very strong, based on theory, several of them [and maybe they are merging?]
    and is this part of the aggression described here in some transgender movements?
    I say some because i don’t like to lump all into a group, due to behavior or agenda of a few…
    but anyway…i think this is where we see some of the more ‘fascist’ elements, and ‘erasures’ and i would even go as boldly to ask,
    due to the changes i have seen on the campus, [and politically there are motives for the deconstrution models that in some practicalities have good intent, such as ridding of gender discriminations, ridding of the negatives that come from heterosexual relations due to the traditional misogynist roles, etc..but,
    i always stop and question,
    when we begin to deconstruct we have to be careful in
    ‘what we are replacing the old with’…ooooh and i just saw something that you can replace ‘man’ with ‘woman’ with in regards to space, but two things…
    Hannah Ardent: [she’s referring to state totalitarianism but you can expand this, to about any cultural or social change]
    “It is in this ‘movement’ which singles out the foes of mankind [replace here with whomever or group] against whom terror is let loose, and no free action of either opposition or sympathy can be permitted to interfere with the ELIMINATION OF THE “OBJECTIVE ENEMY” of History or Nature [here nature of deconstruction] , of the class or the race [AND I WILL ADD, THE GENDER]. Guilt and innocence become senseless notions; “guilty” is SHE/he who stands in the way of the natural or historical process which has passed judgment over ‘inferior races,’ [I’LL ADD HERE INFERIOR GENDER] over individuals ‘fit to live’ over
    DYING CLASSES [and in deconstruction, the philosophy of that segment of gender ambiguity and gender deconstruct in extremes] and DECANDENT PEOPLES [in history its always been WHO DEFINES WHAT IS DECANDENT] ” [581, Origins of Totalitarianism]
    and….
    “By pressing men [WOMYN] against each other, total terror destroys THE SPACE between them; compared to the condition within its iron band, even the deserty of tyranny, insofar as it is still some kind of SPACE, APPEARS LIKE A GUARANTEE OF FREEDOM. TOTALITARIAN GOVERNMENT [OR GROUP OR MAJORITY OR PROGRESS] does not curtail liberties or abolish essential freedoms; nor does it, at least to our limited knowledge, succeed in eradicating the love for freedom from the hearts of man [woman]. IT DESTROYS THE ONE ESSENTIAL PREREUISITE OF ALL FREEDOM WHICH IS SIMPLY
    THE CAPACITY OF MOTION WHICH CANNOT EXIST
    WITHOUT SPACE.” [582, Origins of Totalitarianism]
    so, my point is, is what we are seeing, in these divides, around philosophy,
    the result of not just inclusion, or destruction of patriarchy or traditions…which are good things…
    but are we seeing something, that goes much further, and is that why,
    womyn’s spaces that are het, lesbian, dike, bi, spinster, married, single, poly, etc…but centered around womyn and womyn’s issues…
    under attack because, there is also that movement, that is more than just anti-patriarchy and so forth….?
    some yes, even misogynist because the solution is,
    in that ridding of gender, really the FINAL SOLUTION TO THE WOMAN PROBLEM…
    if you see the very real Danger, and look at the EPIDEMIC TODAY OF VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMYN, ETC.
    and seriously, i have to wonder, are we seeing not just the deconstruction of patriarchy which i totally concur with,
    but are we seeing something that goes beyond that….[esp where trans, as is described in some of these posts, that segment] as far as what is the motive?
    and from what i seen on the two examples above, and like i said, they are ‘cliches’ they are not the entire lesbian and GLBT community because i know i’ve heard many lesbians and GLB complain about the take overs as well, esp on campus…
    so, any thoughts?
    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 15, 2007, 7:36 pm
  143. one more thing, i heard about the change on campus, it was a lesbian mother who told me…i sort of saw it coming, but its only been within the last two years that the department was completely changed,
    anyway she used to work there and she quit, she got fed up and she told me it was like this, “if you are het you are sleeping with the enemy” and she said ‘some’ [mostly the heads of the department] who are of that philosophy, that is the reason the discrimination is happening…
    so like on one hand you hear the pro-woman but on the other hand, you see the discrimination and the services that used to be there, and the networks, for single mothers esp have disappeared…and it is in some ways misogynist,
    that whole praising the characteristics of maleness and demonizing the traits of female and why some femmes have complained…
    now i don’t know where the trans fit into all of this, but i know this issue is discussed, a lot between lesbian philosophers in Europe [the mothers vs the non mothers in the lesbian community only here..but its around the issue of heterosexuality, the belief that if a woman is heterosexual then she sort of asks for her problems mentality, and that mentality is out there…i have the studies if you want to see them, some really good ones in Europe and East, where gender deconstruction was applied in its extreme…
    but now get this, here’s what Doesn’t add up, when you get a society that is like, really gender deconstructed like former Soviet Union, for example, then the first to be attacked by the state, are the lesbians,
    and where i think, in the whole gender deconstruct [that ambiguity] is really, that Euro-Centric Phallocracy-Worship, and it is misogynist]
    and its almost like blaming womyn, for the ills from heterosexuality, which granted, womyn don’t reap the benefits from hetero, no doubt, but is that hetero or is that patriarchy?
    and, do we really have a devine right, to force one or the other? I don’t think we do…i think individuals are different and that it should be a matter of ‘individual choice’, thats my opinion, i dont’ like discrimination against GLBT or Vice Versa…
    i also think sexuality is fluid for many, not all, but for many, when there aren’t those restraints and controls…[just what i think] but…do we run into a form of reverse ‘constructs’ when we attempt to deconstruct gender and sexuality in the extremes….?
    and i would ask, with any deconstruction, not only what do we replace it with [and that always concerns me because its the ones with the POWER that deconstruct, and when it becomes fascist, and its always Euro-Centric White, seriously]
    but also, WHO BENEFITS FROM IT OR WHO GAINS TO BENEFIT FROM IT????
    and when i look at all the angles, it to me always comes down to the same thing, womyn are demonized as womyn, as mothers [because they can bear children] and womyn are blamed for their oppression,
    and the men escape, ownership and responsibility once more.
    i brought all this up due to that clause,
    taking out ‘feminism, etc’ and that doesn’t leave out woman…
    oh, i think it does, and i think its very dangerous…any time you use any means,
    to force womyn into invisibility, as womyn….woman,
    then that to me says, its a porgram that is like The Final Solution…a total erasure of woman, and, you know,
    yes, patriarchy and sexist social constructs, have set definitions of what womyn are and should be, etc,
    but, when we have the other extreme, isn’t that too, a forced construct and defining what womyn are and should be, by some groups definition?
    WHEN DO WOMYN, AS INDIVIDUALS, GET TO DEFINE, WHO THEY ARE, WHO THEY WANT TO BE? AWAY FROM ALL CONSTRUCTS AND INCLUDING IN THOSE ‘FASCIST DECONSTRUCTS TO FIT A MOLD BY ANOTHER GROUP’?
    and when womyn, can’t even hold an event that is yes, womyn who lived their lives as womyn, etc…not as men, etc then, isn’t that just another attempt in
    ‘we will define what ‘woman’ is’ type of thing???
    ESPECIALLY when you see, taking WOMAN out of the equation….
    i think anytime you have a situ where the suggestion of removing feminism out, then you are getting into something that is like, patriarchy on one side, and pro-male or phallocracy specialization internalizations and assimilations, on the other side…
    and those womyn who don’t fit into either, lesbians and bis including and yes some trans…
    then what do they do? it really is like a creation of a male likeness borg world, and that, i think, is very worrisome,
    if any of this makes any sense…but i see it, just may not have the words to articulate it…
    Tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 15, 2007, 8:04 pm
  144. Hi Jordan,

    Here in Ontario Canada, there were still (at least one) lesbian organizations during 1990, but by 1992 they had all been take over by LGB. Then within a few years it was all LGBT and queer shyt. I’m happy to have been there during the 70’s when lesbian groups were strong and numerous.

    There used to be something called the East Coast Lesbian Festival in the states; I was there in 1994. It was totally female-born lesbian-only event. We even had a *separate* area for separatists! 🙂

    Then it all seemed to go up in a puff of smoke.

    Mary

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 15, 2007, 10:16 pm
  145. ok, so i am reading this “questioning transgender politics’
    and well,
    this shit is confusing as hell…seriously, so, see that posts aren’t going through, which is ok, i pasted them in my workbook to maybe work on one day but,
    well, now the shower thing at Michfest, yea that would piss me off, the least they could have done was be somewhat understanding and maybe brought their own showers or something, but yea i mean that was somewhat obvious,
    but the thing with the campus, maybe it is the trans because its like, very anti-femme and thats what i guess i have issues with, is when there is this tendency to make womyn men, or try too,
    or to devalue what womyn are, even if it is a construct you know…[prob has a lot to do with having that shit forced on my by bio-mom, you know when you hear that woman hate every day…wear lipstick you a whore, wear a skirt you trying to get a man in your pants, thats what i grew up with, every damn day so yea, like i’m anti-patriarchy as hell but am obsessed with feminine clothes now and love fashion, and yea i know its patriarchial but its that rebelling in me, i like pinks and flowers and chiffons, but can be just as happy in jeans and teeshirt and combat boots, just not every day,
    but anyway, my ‘writing’ on gender deconstructs is the attempt to mold womyn into this like maleness, i can’t stand it….seriously, hey if its their choice, fine, not a prob, just don’t force it, or vice versa…
    but so i read this transgends and it is confusing as hell, but then, sometimes i think the GLBT is confusing when i read some of the lit too, and honestly, sometimes i see patriarchial values, just as much [esp how womyn are judged] so
    i don’t know…but thinking maybe asexual isn’t a bad thing, LOL.
    guess for womyn such as myself, who’ve survived abuse from both males and females, we’re sort of a different breed, we don’t trust either, not close that is…so yea, i guess in a way we could be, asexual..on the inside,
    cuzz we disconnect, from men and womyn, or rather, we are disconnected, on a deep psyche level that is difficult to put into words. let me put it this way, terrified of men, esp if there is a group, but just as terrified of womyn, that fear is always there cuzz its like, i am always thinking, ‘ok is she like my bio-mom’? [even seeing a photo of a woman that resembles here and its like i freeze in fear] or is he, like my ex who was a rapist? so that wall is always there, not a mental wall, its like just there, i just notice it more as i started coming forward with the child abuse, but anyway,
    so, maybe i just have a weird way of looking at all of this, why i see elements of fascism in so much, maybe its just when i see ‘controls’, or ‘bullying’ and well on that, it does seem, the trans are bullying,
    but anyway…don’t have to post this, just thought i’d say it, just cuzz i needed to.
    tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 16, 2007, 1:50 am
  146. Tasha: the whole thing with gender ‘ambiguity’ to me seems like another means of making feminine traits [woman identified, not patriarchial] invisible, and if there is invisibility then there is impunity to oppress…in a way its like, trying to make a ‘racial ambiguity’ and i’ve seen this in ’some’ far left ideologies/and past applications and its a fallacy because…

    its ‘ambiguity’ that is defined by white majority [in the whole attempt to deconstruct humans into being this one sameness, the borg–under a global hegemony of consumerist globalization [which could be done under capitalism or state capitaiism/corporatist fascism].

    In other words, its like a psychological means of race genocide, or racial ‘erasure’…and it to me is the same when the extremes under ‘ambiguity of gender’ is attempted as a means of ‘woman erasure’….

    see on this i see and concur with the self-determination of peoples [within respect of human rights], because assimilation and forced assimilation/that works to form ‘erasure’ is really

    and extension of a type of ‘eugenics’

    GREAT thoughts and analogies, Tasha.

    I haven’t read all the comments of yours I’ve just approved and it will take me a while to do so🙂, just wanted to say this is great.

    And UPPITY — that comment up there?!

    AMAZING!!

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 16, 2007, 3:26 am
  147. Jordan, everything is al GLBTQRSTUVWXYZ in the Seattle area, other than in quiet pockets where womyn have said, “Eh. Screw that. We’ll have our own dyke march out on the deck.” 🙂

    I blogged last year about a really aggravating situation with Pride here in Seattle where four men just up and signed a contract with the city of Seattle to move Pride from its historic place in the gay/lesbian part of Seattle where all the lesbian and gay businesses are to downtown Seattle. They didn’t even check with anybody, just did it. 8,000 people signed a petition opposing it, but too bad, nothing anybody could do.

    What made it REALLY aggravating was, a bunch of people including Dykes on Bikes decided to have their own Pride in the old location the same weekend and some of the sponsors stayed there, too. But the new group advertised that Dykes on Bikes was leading the parade in Seattle anyway! Even though Dykes on Bikes opposed the move and had no intention of being there. Then when women spoke up, the new group (men and one transwoman) threw up something like that Dykes on Bike hadn’t trademarked their name and they could use that name on the promotional material for the new Pride if they felt like it.

    The whole thing was really aggravating, just the bullying and running over the lesbians.

    Ultimately, out of wanting to be conciliatory and “united”, Dykes on Bikes road in both parades, the new one and the old one.

    This year there was a huge drama because the new Pride people never paid the bill to the City of Seattle and they still owe over $100,000K. Even though Pride in Seattle drew 200,000 people last year. Where’d the money go, you ask. Who knows. Supposedly a deal has been cut with the city to pay it all back now although for a while the intention was to declare bankruptcy. Anyway, my point is, the men just took over, made unilateral decisions, did whatever they wanted to, and the women tried to make do, do the best they could, all amidst the guys who made the mess talking about, “Think about the importance of UNITY.”

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 16, 2007, 3:36 am
  148. Tasha wrote:

    “we also consider that by removing lesbian, feminist and other woman-centered terms from our vocabulary that aren’t we losing the “woman” from the discussion and the movement.”

    I just noticed this…

    so, lets see, we aren’t losing “woman” from the discussion,

    on the Contrary, THATS EXACTLY WHAT IS BEING DONE…

    Hmm. I thought that was the point Jordan was making.

    Posted by Aletha | June 16, 2007, 5:18 am
  149. Heart,
    yea i’m still trying to sort some of this stuff out, i did TOTALLY CONCUR with the section on the transgender politics site [to the right here] in regards to S/M, [i’m adamently against]
    now, that i do know a bit about the studies done, in fact, when i was first looking for information on ‘leftist deconstruction’ after i read Firestone, that is when i pulled up several studies in Europe/Russia [btw feminism there is a bit more woman identified now due to the years of completely ‘ignoring differences in gender’] but anyway…
    i was doing research two years ago on alt-porn [cuzz something i read online Bitch magazine] and some things really started bothering me, and really reminded me of my biomom so i sort of became obsessed in trying to understand where this ‘self-debasement’ was coming from, why these young people were like getting involved with all these like torture rituals,
    and i think i did make a copy of this one study on S/M but the real DANGER in S/M, this was psychological study is that the violence, the person becomes ‘accustomed to the pain’ and then needs more and more,
    and the study said that womyn [it was a study on S/M and womyn] are increasing in numbers in ERs due to SERIOUS INJURIES, and the study was on the psychological effects and it was, well the findings were very negative,
    and many womyn wind up dead. I mean, you know its like insane, seriously but i will say, its not just in transgender or lesbian relationships [those who are into that whole scene] and hets, but
    its [on serious levels] increasing in young people and i really think its tied into the obsession with violence and ‘surviving violence’ which we see, almost every week, a new horror or slash film, that glorifies extreme violence, esp towards womyn and even CHILDREN…
    thats what really disturbs me is the increase use of CHILDREN IN HORROR/SLASH FILMS, something DEFINATELY SICK ABOUT OUR SOCIETY AS A WHOLE…
    so point is, the whole thing with S/M is not just sexual politics, its also the manifestation of just how far our society has plummeted into sado-machicism [sic] and debasement. AND on a social psychology level, i think its extremely one of the most dangerous “societial think” there is–and is it the result of spiritual death, in that we’ve become so materialistic, or materialists…that we’ve lost the ability to know true intimate power sharing???? [generally speaking of society as a whole here] we’ve definately, generally speaking, lost the ‘art of loving and creative loving’ there is nothing creative about top/bottom violent role acting out,
    nothing creative because one, its EXTREMELY BASED ON PORN, and two, its EXTREMELY BASED ON RAPE/CHILD RAPE.
    NOTE: AND WHEN TEENS START IN THIS YOU JUST KNOW, DUE TO PEER PRESSURE, THAT MANY ARE COERCED, WOMYN, AND THAT I THINK IS VERY DANGEROUS AND ABSOLUTELY NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED AND SOON]
    and it goes beyond like ‘self-harm’ that individuals do from coping with past abuse, etc., that is due to internalized hate/blame, etc. that victims/survivors take on, esp if abuse occurred in childhood, and what i see that really bothered me about the whole S/M scene, esp in alt-porn [thats when i learned a lot about it was reading the posts and i had to like look up all these terms and etc and it was all i could do now to keep from getting sick to my stomach…i mean, i know violence o.k., have endured enough of it, i also understand self harm cuzz i’ve done it [eating disorders] but,
    but to like, willingly let someone do that crap to me, uh, i don’t know, uh something not like working right there in the ole deck or something???? i saw a post once, now this is no joke o.k. and its why i left the forum [and i was doing research/study] and there was the woman of color ‘pro patriarchial” and she was very upfront about her wanting to be ‘controlled’ lesbian, who stated she wanted a white lesbian partner to slap her around…and she wrote several posts on this,
    and i was just like, WTF?
    you know someone like me who is like new to the scene and reads something like that, esp after living on the streets and you know o.k. we womyn well we had our share of violence doled out to us,
    but in all the life of me i never, once, ever, heard ANY WOMAN, NOW I’M TALKING WOMYN OF COLOR NOW,EVER SAY, ANYTHING REMOTELY LIKE THAT, SHIT,
    I MEAN JUST HINT AT SOMETHING LIKE THAT AND YOU WON’T COME AWAY WALKING…
    so, like o.k. i’m like totally shocked, and then i think, yea bullshit, shock value here…but no, i mean this woman was dead serious…
    but you know i wonder too if this is like some class thing like maybe these womyn are rich and bored and just have too much goddamn time on their hands or something, maybe some hard labor or something i mean geeesh…and i do think thats a lot of the problem, too damn much comfort or something, i would say, trade places with street womyn for a month, that should cure you of the need to be abused, etc [S/M] that is…
    but anyway, yea the essay on the S/M and the power plays on the transgender politics was REALLY GOOD AND RIGHT ON THE MARK, and the thing that people need to know is that
    the so called ‘sex positive’ therapies for abuse victims/survivors, is increasing and its really, can i be honest,
    just revictimizing people all over again, and its for profit, and it needs to be stopped. and i’m saying this from having struggled with major depression, suicide, etc., and its one thing to like not have healthy boundaries because they’ve been violated, [that, and it don’t do a damn thing to help, shit i see more people coming out of that sex positive therapy crap in the online groups on child sex abuse who then need more drugs, to deal with PTSD AND mental illnesses, etc.]
    its quite another to willingly go seek out abuse or play role abuse in thinking you are taking something back…
    no you aren’t, you aren’t taking anything back, you CAN’T TAKE BACK WHATS IN THE PAST, YOU CAN’T,
    YOU CAN TAKE BACK YOURSELF, BUT YOU CAN’T LIKE, RELIVE IT WITH SOMEONE ELSE AND THEN THINK ITS TAKING IT BACK…
    no, all that is–IS BEING OR LETTING YOURSELF BE ABUSED BY SOMEONE ELSE IN THE NOW IN SOME TWISTED NOTION OF ‘LOVE’, AND IT IS
    CRAZY. OK, IT IS CRAZY….TAKE IT FROM A SURVIVOR OF ABUSE, LETTING SOMEONE SLAP YOU, BEAT YOU, PULL YOUR NIPPLES OFF, WHATEVER, IS FRICKING CRAZY…TO WANT THAT, HELL I DON’T KNOW, SERIOUSLY HAVE YOU TRIED HEMP?? OR LIKE, NATURE WALKS OR SCREAMING,
    I MEAN I CAN UNDERSTAND SOMEONE BEING VIOLENT OR ACTING OUT IN RAGE, TOWARDS OTHERS MORE THAN I CAN UNDERSTAND SOMEONE LETTING THEIR LOVER TORTURE THEM????
    AND I’M NOT SAYING THIS TO BE MEAN, YEA I DO THINK ITS FUCKING INSANE AS HELL BUT THEN,
    if you let someone abuse you like that, and think pain is no big deal, then what, do you think, after years of that, about seeing someone ‘else’ in pain? are you so desensitized that any human empathy is like, gone? [and i sort of saw this mentality on the alt-porn sites, it like, if violence is acceptable to yourself, then its no big deal if its to someone there or someone here…and its like this goes beyond emotional detachment, it is like these people who get further deep into this become sadists themselves, and THAT IS SCARY, TO SEE THIS BECOMING A LIKE ‘PREFERENCE’ IN OUR SOCIETY…
    its almost like this gladiator mentality and it is i would go as far to say, part of that whole deconstruct, but its deconstruction of ‘self’, to the most slow way to commit mental, spiritual, and soul suicide.
    you know i struggle, and i fight depression every day, i don’t sit around and go, hmmm, i think i will be depressed today and morbid cuzz it will help me take back whatever….and let someone torture me for sexual kicks…
    but then, maybe its just class difference or something, maybe i just a big whoosy, lol, but seriously, some woman or man start that shit on me, in de bedroom, like the violence and crap,
    i gonna be pulling out some whoop ass big time. so yea i mean some of this whole gender politics is a bit, well, some of it just sounds crazy really,
    not the lesbians and bis, the like i am a woman if this or used to be man or now i not man i woman but tomorrow i a man or what the fuck ever…
    if thats what our future holds, uh, we gonna have a really dysfunctional society…its bad enough we have survivors of abuse, etc.,
    we don’t need people seeking to be abused. ? consciously seeking now, not constructs or subconscious…
    you know its kind of tragic with all the mental issues i’ve had to really struggle through now, to see or read about people who actually ‘desire’ that violence in their life,
    was i just born in the wrong age and time or what????
    :

    Posted by Tasha | June 16, 2007, 6:13 am
  150. you know come to think of it, having dealt with years of self hate and all this stuff i am reading on this transgender politics, [on that questioning transgender, btw its good if you are like me and don’t know a whole hell of a lot about it],
    but get this, one thing i realized through like venting and sifting and going through years of trying to figure out why i was like sort of a freak,
    well, two things, my biomom instilled in me BIG TIME,
    was 1. fear and 2. guilt
    so, now, taking the personal to the political here…
    what possibility do you think, that the lure to self abuse and S/M and the extremist ‘negative’ deconstructs
    are really, a manifestation of
    social fear
    and social guilt?????
    take it a step further, how about,
    male patriarchial fear? and male patriarchial guilt? in regards to transgenders, and same for how you say it, wtm, or ok womyn who decide they are really men…
    that could also be, internalized/social guilt/fear,
    but in regards to the increase in violence/slash films, etc…yea, i have to wonder, how much of that is due to
    guilt/fear that comes from 1.priviledge 2. knowledge of ancestor sins/abuses to people of color 3. fear of retaliation
    and 4. self-hate, self-society hate, of what we are as a society?
    hmmm, well, interesting,
    could explain a lot. and you know the real danger is,
    when you get caught up in that cycle of self destruction [and maybe self-deconstruction in extreme is really, self-destruction….?]
    but that cycle becomes ‘comfortable’ and its harder than hell to break free from, and it is a slow death…a slow suicide, why i blog, because if i blog it, its out there and its like i can see it apart from myself [rather than just in my head] and then i think, well, ok, well doesn’t have to be this way..and it is helping, little by little but it is…
    but on a societal view,
    are we committing a slow, social suicide?
    tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 16, 2007, 6:31 am
  151. Considering what happened at the Boston Dyke March, with it being guided and run from the influence of those born male and those that lay claim to being men, maybe next year they should have a “Take Back The Dyke March”.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 16, 2007, 9:50 am
  152. Uppity, ha! Bitter “ha!”:/

    And yeah, Tasha, I think that was the point Jordan was making as Aletha said, she was saying the women are being erased.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 16, 2007, 12:08 pm
  153. like i said attempting to work this out,
    sorry i haven’t been like saturated with this world, totally new to me,
    our worlds are zones apart, totally…..and it all seems a bit bourgousie to me
    tasha

    Posted by Tasha | June 16, 2007, 3:01 pm
  154. Hey, Tasha, you said a mouthful up there!

    I apologize for not approving your comments more quickly, you say such great things.

    I wanted to agree with you that perversely, a lot of this stuff is totally, you said it, bourgeois.

    I’m right there with you. Who but people with a whole lot of money and a whole lot of resources and a whole lot of time on their hands is going to center their lives around things like SM as a lifestyle other than, of course, those who are being abused and victimized and can’t figure out how to get out. 😦

    It’s really interesting, too, transgender issues, SM issues, my experience is, these are far and away, in the U.S., the preoccupation of white liberals. So far as transgender issues go, how many people in the world are going to be able to pay $10-000 – $100,000 to “transition.” I asked that one time on the Michfest forum and a transwoman (who was ultimately banned, totally abusive to women) said something like, “You can get the surgery in Thailand for $8,000, anybody who can buy a car can get the surgery.” Which evidenced to me the disconnect between this person and most of the rest of humanity who, if they could get their hands on EITHER a car or $8,000 would not be flying off to Thailand for elective surgery.

    It is actually transgender, poor persons of color, who almost never transition, i.e., obtain surgeries, who are at tremendous risk for rape and violence and who are victimized in many ways in proportionately large numbers.

    What has happened in this country, though, is that the experiences of these very marginalized, often victimized persons — transgender persons of color — get *appropriated* and *annexed* by, as you say, the bourgeoisie, in other words, these are persons who are tokenized by, not necessarily even white transgender persons, but white self-identified liberals and progressives who consider themselves transgender activists, many of whom are well-to-do, and academics of all races and backgrounds, who fancy themselves to be oh so hip and oh so inclusive and who mount these crusades in support of transpersons without having any clue what some of the most important issues are, or caring to investigate.

    I think this phenomenon is very much like the white liberal guilt phenomenon which most conscious, progressive and anti-racist people recognize now as counterproductive, but that revelation hasn’t yet hit in some of these other populations, so you have lots and lots of, again, well to do/academic/white/het persons “supporting” what amounts to wealthy, white, post-op transwomen, mostly, in the politics which are helpful to them, specifically. What this means is that the most marginalized populations — again, transgender, young, non-op persons of color — have all sorts of struggles which do not go addressed and which are made worse by the liberal politics I’m describing. You’ve noticed that most of the self-identified progressives and liberals who identify as transgender activists are also pro-prostitution, pro-pornography and pro-sm, and get into all these lengthy exegeses about how all of this stuff is so liberating and empowering and it’s all about “choice”. Somehow they don’t make the connections they ought to be making, though, when — as happens FAR too often — a transgender person of color who is prostituted is *murdered*. They (the liberal pro-trans crowd, most of whom aren’t transgender themselves) then mount the soapbox about the oppression of transgender persons without for whatever reason even thinking about what the rest of us are thinking: that what the murdered transgender person of color went through is not an issue for, for example, the white person who said getting surgery was no big deal (who works for a Fortune 500 company and got surgery at 40-something) or for many other white transwomen who have transitioned late in life after many years, quite often, of having had successful professional careers as white heterosexual men, or for by far most white liberals and progressives, who do not have to be prostituted on the street to survive, who do not have to perform in pornography to survive.

    They are, in other words, annexing the experiences of transgender persons of color, many of whom have far more pressing difficulties to consider than whether or not they are included in lesbian or woman-only events, like, for example, surviving and staying alive from day to day. All of the many intersections and the multiple oppressions get collapsed into this category of “transgender oppression” on the part of those with “non-trans privilege,” when many of those accused of “non-trans privilege” are actually also poor people of color, lesbians, gender non-conforming and oppressed multiply, with many of transgender activists actually being white, het, academics, relatively well-to-do and so on.

    So, yeah, you’ve got it. From the perspective of woman-centered community, our issues are the liberation of female persons. That gets totally buried under all of the smoke and mirrors and obfuscations of the phenomena I’ve described.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 18, 2007, 7:01 pm
  155. For what it’s worth, one of the reasons I’m careful about moderating your posts, Tasha is, you are fairly new to active participation in the blogosphere. Those of us who are radical feminists — anti-porn, anti-prostitution, anti-SM, pro-woman-only spaces, woman-centered — are constantly targeted by all sorts of people in ways which are dishonest, disingenous, and unethical. One way we are targeted is, our posts are culled for quotes which might be particularly useful to someone whose intentions are not good so far as women are concerned.
    You are relatively new to the radfem blogosphere and I worry that this will be done to you as you are working out your own thoughts and ideas and views on these issues and so you are processing as you are writing. I do that too. I think most of us do that. It’s ridiculous that we have to worry that our process will be used against us, but it has been and it will be. There are plenty of radfems who are no longer on the internet, or who are barely on the internet, because they were too forthright and frank as they worked through their ideas and views and so they became targets for pile-ons and trainwrecks. It doesn’t matter how they have attempted to clarify their position or explain that they have moved on and figured things out, what they said six years ago, eight years ago, four years ago, two years ago, hell, six months ago, because we are all learning new things all the time, gets hauled out to clobber them whenever what they say starts making a little too much sense for the pro-porn, pro-prostitution, pro-sm, I-mock-the-sisterhood crowd.

    I shouldn’t really worry about you because your writings are clear and authentic and they ring and any honest person reading understands that this is you, working through all of these many issues from the perspective of having been intimately acquainted with the misogynist Left. But we are not talking about honest persons here . We are talking about persons who are often deeply dishonest.

    So I worry. I hope you don’t take my cautiousness personally. I feel protective of you. You are really something– you’ve got some amazing work ahead of you, I believe.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 18, 2007, 8:14 pm
  156. What really worries me about Transgender and gender activists encroaching on feminism, and radical feminism, is the fundamental idea of transgender. That what makes a woman a woman is wanting to wear dresses, and put on makeup, and wearing bras. A lot of the science and the studies being put out to support Transgender activism, seals and fuels gender bias that there is this inherant identity called “gender” that makes a person a woman, instead of her genitalia. Transgender supports the idea that gender is science and not socialization. Further that the only way men can wear makeup, express cultural “femininity” and wear dresses is to surgically remove their penis. People should be free to express themselves without oppression, even if they want to surgically change the sexual organs of their body.

    Is it right for them to force their way into women only spaces? In 2001 they were at the Michigan fest. I read that they were there, and they still had their male parts, and went naked into the showers with women. All women have suffered some kind of prejudice from men, some kind of suffering at the hands of men. A lot of these women may have even been sexually assaulted by men. A woman would understand this. A woman, even if she were to have something resembling a penis. Let’s take their premise for fact that they are actually women inside men’s bodies. A woman would understand this if she were to have male parts and would not parade them around in the shower room.

    Further how is any woman only fest supposed to make a safe environment when any man can just say he is a transsexual and be given a pass?

    I am completely accepting of transsexuals in their total freedom of expression and freedom from oppression even though I do not agree with gender stereotypes mainly because I have the genetic ability to give LIVE birth, with a 9 month gestation, and I bleed every month. No way in hell I am genetically predisposed to want to wear fragile and frilly, tight constricting clothing, bras, and makeup. However they have the right to expression and living life the way they want to be seen. What they are doing, though, is oppressing us by insisting we, or radical feminists accept them as women.

    I do not see any female to males joining the infantry, or any all male ritual spaces, probably because they cannot, and all female spaces are just easier targets like Heart said.

    If anything the Transgenders should just take one for the team, so to speak, and understand that some places just cannot risk letting a biological man in, even if she identifies as a woman.

    Posted by Kiuku | June 18, 2007, 11:13 pm
  157. I sent off an email to Frameline, using the letter mentioned above in post # 63. Below is the response from Michael Lumpkin of Frameline.

    I find it very interesting that this word ‘transphobic’ is used as the reason for axing a lesbian sci-fi short. This again is evidence of female voices, dykes being targeted, being affected and silenced by the transgender movement, trans activists and their agents.

    Evidently Frameline is new to the tactics utilized by trans activists and have naively jumped on the pop-psycho wagon of labeling females just fearful twits, hysterical, unbalanced, incapable of sound judgment regarding what is acceptable, labeling females with the psychological condition, the medical diagnosis of having a Phobia. And all of this is called ‘trans-phobic’. That is our diagnosis. That is what we are labeled when we dare bring to light, voice and otherwise discuss our station in this world and how actions, collective or individual affect our lives in the here and now and in the future.

    We are just feeble minded females with unfounded fears and anyone, even the stranger on the Internet who has never met us is capable and entitled to write an email to deny females the rights afforded others, the right to express, to be, and any or all of this is a justified diagnosis because they, those that determine what females will be permitted to have, where we will meet, what we are permitted to say or do… have determined that we are mentally ill, we have a phobia. Trans-phobia.

    So, trans activists are honor bound to spread this delicate information regarding females’ mental disorder and shout ‘TRANS-PHOBIA’ from the rooftops, shouting until no female dare speak, analyze nor comment on what being female means in this world, what being a dyke means in this world, what this world does *to* those born female.

    It is time to push back. Call, write, and express your views. This is not over. There is educational value in addressing Frameline as evidenced from the letter below. Any person or group so ready to label females mentally ill, ate up with trans-phobia as an excuse for silencing us, shutting dykes up, clearly has an underdeveloped understanding of feminism, females and the trans movement.

    We could just as well begin to shout DYKE-PHOBIC, FEM-PHOBIC and be very on target with an analysis that those in the trans movement who work to harm us actually fear us, but what good would stooping down to that name-calling level really do? We, as females, pro-feminists, pro-women have evolved past the tactics used by those that wish us erased and those trans activist that work to cause us harm. Educating people who are sucked in by the ‘trans-phobic’ tactic is a more productive use of energy, if there is any energy to spare from addressing the lived realities of what actually happens to those of us born female around the World.

    Below is Michael’s warm and appreciative response to my letter. He was honor bound as a gentle-man to treat me with kid gloves. After all, as a female who desires respect and to be heard, I suffer from that mental condition, ascribed to me by strangers on the Internet, of having a phobia, a trans-phobia.
    __________________

    Dear (senders),

    Thank you very much for your letter of concern regarding Catherine Crouch’s film The Gendercator. While we stand behind our decision to not screen this film, we appreciate your point of view and the seriousness of your request.

    During Frameline’s film selection process there are hundreds of films that are not selected for screening at the Film Festival. Due to the transphobic content of the film, the Director’s statements and the community reaction to the film and her statements, Frameline chose not to screen The Gendercator.

    Given the transphobic content of the film, it was clear that a productive or constructive dialogue would not result from a community forum screening. Frameline has a long and proud history and commitment to funding, screening and distributing lesbian film. We have screened films and facilitated dialogue around the issues raised in The Gendercator during previous festivals and at our monthly Frameline at The Center screenings and we will continue to do so.

    Again, thank you for your feedback and concern.

    Michael Lumpkin
    Artistic Director
    Frameline
    145 9th Street, Suite 300
    San Francisco, CA 94103
    P 415.703.8650 x302
    F 415.861.1404
    http://www.frameline.org

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 19, 2007, 9:24 am
  158. Uppity, I just read a film review of the Gendericator. It brings up some serious points and I wonder exactly what comments in the film are considered “transphobic”. Transactivism seeks to make gender a scientific reality instead of a cultural norm. The destruction of indigenous populations and their respective cultures can make the hypothetical 2048 of Gendericator a very real and scary possibility.

    Is it possible to make a film that addresses the very real ethical issues of gender without offending the trans population? I do not think so, though I reserve judgement of its alleged “transphobic” nature until I actually see this film.

    “The Gendercator is a short satirical take on female body modification and gender. The story uses the “Rip van Winkle” model to extrapolate from the past into a possible future.

    In 1973 a group of hippie women are celebrating Billie Jean King’s victory over Bobby Riggs. They are partying in the rural woods outside of Bloomington, Indiana. Our heroine Sally is a simple minded, sporty type who overindulges at the party and passes out under a tree. Sally wakes up 75 years later in 2048 to discover (amongst other social changes) that feminism has failed utterly and completely. Sex roles and gender expression are rigidly binary and enforced by law and social custom. When Sally rejects the feminine hairdo and short skirt she is given, the doctor at the emergency room calls in the “Gendercator”, a government official who informs Sally that butch women and sissy boys are no longer tolerated – gender variants are allowed to chose their gender, but they must chose one and follow its rigid constraints.

    Sally is baffled by this brave new world. All she wants is to “do her own thing” – but her own thing is no more. Sally is a simple-minded stoner, indoctrinated into 70s feminism. She is no poster girl or freedom fighter, just a gentle tomboy dropped into the future with a tendency to respond in slogans such as “sisterhood is powerful”.

    Nurse Nancy locates some of Sally’s former friends – they are 100 now, but because of advances in the medical profession (cloning spare parts), they are still healthy and thriving. The friends tell Sally they heard she moved to California and that’s why they never looked for her. One of her friends appears to be a man and tells Sally, “They made me do it. They’ll make you too.” They explain to Sally that in the early 2000s the evangelical Christians took over the government and legislated their strict family values, legally sanctioning only “one man, one woman” couples. Advances in sex reassignment surgery have made it possible to honor an individual’s choice of gender AND government policy. Sally is comfortable in the middle of the genders, an unacceptable choice in 2048.

    Director’s Note

    Things are getting very strange for women these days. More and more often we see young heterosexual women carving their bodies into porno Barbie dolls and lesbian women altering themselves into transmen. Our distorted cultural norms are making women feel compelled to use medical advances to change themselves, instead of working to change the world. This is one story, showing one possible scary future. I am hopeful that this story will foster discussion about female body modification and medical ethics. “

    Posted by Kiuku | June 19, 2007, 1:58 pm
  159. Dear (senders),

    Thank you very […]

    Due to the transphobic content […]

    Given the transphobic content of […]

    His position is clear. And if it sounds as if he thinks if he says it enough it will become understanable to the transphobe.

    Funny that never seems to work when this is said:

    Due to the misogynistic content […]

    Given the misogynistic content…[…]

    Posted by E. K.(Kitty) Glendower | June 19, 2007, 3:11 pm
  160. What I find interesting about the Gendercator is that I was in Bloomington, Indiana in 1973, in the woods with dykes and I had that same flannel shirt.

    Scary.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | June 19, 2007, 4:10 pm
  161. As a Radical Feminist Lesbian, I know first hand, just how hard it is to be a community organizer. I believe
    everywoman has the right to name and define her space. But she must also be prepared to defend that space. Hurray for MWMF for clearly defining her space and defending it!

    A Dyke March that excludes Lesbians with women-born-womyn politics or a Dyke March that excludes Lesbians who support Lesbians with women-born-womyn politics???????????????? This is the message I get loud and clear.

    Posted by Wanda Henson | June 21, 2007, 3:04 pm
  162. An FyI – My original message is first, followed by the boston dyke march response, followed by my final response.

    >
    > We’ve been hearing from lesbians and women everywhere who are stunned at
    > your decision to uninvite bitch, who is a dyke….from the dyke
    > march….because she plays michigan womens festival….
    >
    > see where i’m going with this?
    >
    > As an organizer myself who has seen these issues come up in the past about
    > various performers for the SisterSpace festival, I’m very curious to know
    > how it came about in your organizing and why the final decision was made.
    > Does Boston Dyke March have a policy to not invite any performers who play
    > michigan? If Boston does have that policy then why was bitch invited in the
    > first place, and if you don’t have that policy, then why?
    >
    > Hoping to open dialogue about it, it came across as a hurtful message to the
    > lesbian community.
    >
    > with peace and love,
    > Jordan
    >

    On 6/21/07, Boston Dykemarch wrote:

    The Boston Dyke March Committee would like to address ongoing public
    discussion regarding its decision to cancel Bitch’s performance at the
    Dyke March rally this year.

    In the week preceding the Dyke March, members of the Boston queer,
    genderqueer, and transgender community began contacting the Dyke March
    Committee, expressing dissatisfaction about the selection of Bitch as
    a featured performer. As the week continued, many community members
    and organizations contacted the Dyke March, urging the committee to
    cancel the performance. By the end of the week, it was obvious that
    the unhappiness had become widespread and threatened to disrupt the
    spirit of unity and inclusivity that the Boston Dyke March has enjoyed
    for so many years. The widespread dissatisfaction included many
    longtime Dyke March supporters, past committee members, community
    sponsors, and liaison groups. The mission of the Boston Dyke March is
    to provide a dynamic and welcoming space for participants of all
    sexualities, gender expressions, races, ages, ethnicities, sizes,
    economic backgrounds, and physical abilities. Because our mission is
    one of inclusivity and unity, we are committed to listening and
    responding to the voices of our LGBTQ community members.

    This decision made by the Dyke March Committee was in response to the
    hurt and sorrow expressed by a large segment of our community, and is
    in no way a statement about Bitch as a performer or dyke activist.

    Much of the public discussion regarding the Boston Dyke March’s
    decision to cancel Bitch has come from people outside our community.
    The Boston queer and dyke community is committed to progressive
    politics of trans-inclusion, so feedback from the Boston community has
    been overwhelmingly positive. We are excited to announce that the 2007
    Dyke March was the largest Dyke March in Boston history. The Boston
    Dyke March has been and continues to be for everyone.

    -The Boston Dyke March Committee

    On 6/21/07, Jordan wrote:

    Thank you for passing along what I take to be your public statement,

    I strongly recommend the Boston Dyke March change its name to something that makes it more clear it is not a dyke march. Or simply join the Boston Pride Parade that happens the same weekend.

    Although your words say it’s for everyone, your actions clearly show it is for everyone except Bitch and other women and lesbians who support Michigan Women’s Festival, women born women spaces, as well as spaces that are inclusive and open to everyone.

    Can someone in Boston please acknowledge the mixed message that has been sent by calling this a “Dyke March”? And by inviting a performer (who is a dyke), and then dis-inviting her on the guise that the march is for everyone? (except her of course)

    What you may not realize is your actions are larger than Boston, there is an entire herstory of lesbian-feminism and women’s spaces and dyke marches upon which you are built, and in the grand scheme of women’s identity, space, voice and basic existence – it matters. I hope that sooner rather than later the organizing committee and those who called for Bitch’s dismissal will be able to see the misogyny they enacted on a brave, strong woman – the same type for which the Dyke March was born.

    Posted by Jordan | June 21, 2007, 5:45 pm
  163. Thus an inevitable resurgence of Lesbian Separatism.

    Thanks, Jordan

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | June 21, 2007, 6:02 pm
  164. Although your words say it’s for everyone, your actions clearly show it is for everyone except Bitch and other women and lesbians who support Michigan Women’s Festival, women born women spaces, as well as spaces that are inclusive and open to everyone.

    Can someone in Boston please acknowledge the mixed message that has been sent by calling this a “Dyke March”? And by inviting a performer (who is a dyke), and then dis-inviting her on the guise that the march is for everyone? (except her of course)

    Rock on, Jordan!

    What a great response. And Mary Sunshine, yes.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | June 22, 2007, 1:01 pm
  165. Wow Jordon that is awesome. Seriously why are they calling it a dyke march? I think this is what he means, and I’m sure it is a man who wrote this, just like it was a man who responded for frameline:

    In the week preceding the Dyke March, members of the Boston queer (MEN),
    genderqueer (MEN), and transgender community (MEN) began contacting the Dyke March
    Committee, expressing dissatisfaction about the selection of Bitch as
    a featured performer. As the week continued, many community members (MEN)
    and organizations (MEN) contacted the Dyke March, urging the committee to
    cancel the performance.

    The widespread dissatisfaction included many
    longtime Dyke March supporters (MEN), past committee members (MEN), community
    sponsors (MEN), and liaison groups (MEN).

    I mean seriously what exactly is a “Dyke March” Supporter other than a man? And what is a community sponsor other than a man?

    “The mission of the Boston Dyke March is
    to provide a dynamic and welcoming space for participants of all
    sexualities,”(MEN)

    Posted by Kiuku | June 26, 2007, 1:25 pm
  166. I have read the comments here with interest and hope you will welcome my observations. I am a (post-op) female who respects the right of any group to create and maintain spaces of their own.

    Personally, I find it outrageous that certain people, whether truly pre-op or everyday transgendered males would walk around naked in places where it is decidedly unwelcome.

    The music festival organizers appear to feel that people like myself have life experiences of limited value in their context. That is their call, they can do whatever they want – it really isn’t up to me. For myself, I consider it rude to barge in where I am not welcome unless my fundamental rights are involved (employment, public services, etc.).

    Anyway, many people like myself reject application of the “transgender” umbrella term. We view it as a socio-political construction that mainly provides cover for males with transgressive inclinations that reinforce sexist stereotypes.

    Fact is, post-ops (speaking about females here) are like everybody else. We come in all flavors, ranging from the softly feminine through hard-edge butch. For us, transition was about correcting the misalignment between our innate neurobiological wiring, hormonal balance, and distorted anatolical details. It was never about the clothes.

    Collectively, post-ops are straight, gay, bi, liberal, conservative, apolitical, etc. We live in a wide variety of cultural settings, have no special wisdom, score triumphs, make mistakes, and otherwise get on with things like everyone else. And that is what it is really about.

    I happen to be in a stable, loving, lesbian relationship. We have several adult children and a wide circle of friends. We are just a couple of middle-aged ladies in the suburbs, actually.

    Posted by Sharon Gaughan | June 27, 2007, 12:16 pm
  167. I’ve read all the posts here with much interest, since somehow I missed out on this entire controversy.

    What can we do about these situations?

    One thing is, dykes and lesbian feminists do need to have more plans in place for dealing with “institutions” that claim to represent us. Who was on the Boston Dyke March Committee? Specifically who wrote the protest letters or who made all the phone calls trying to get rid of Bitch? Let’s get some accountability here. Let’s find out who was behind the derailment of Bitch–let’s name names!

    The second step is for dykes who hate these sorts of anti-dyke actions in favor of “coalitions” i.e. women last, men and allies first, to do something new– find a new venue for Bitch in Boston, find out what she would have been paid to perform at the March, and simply hold a solidarity concert now or sometime in the future.

    Let’s hold Gendercator viewings everywhere we can and send the proceeds to the fimmaker. Let’s find out how to buy Gendercator and do some old fashioned fundraising to back this brave woman with cash! Anyone out there, tell me how to get the movie and how much it costs, because I am going to do this in Los Angeles, and Dykes and lesbian feminists here are welcome to attend as soon as I get these details and see if Heart is interested in this project.

    Maybe Ms. Couch can tell us all how much she’d like to earn on this project, and how we can support her future projects. Three is PowerUp here, a big lesbian entertainment industry group that just might be helpful, who knows?

    Dykes, lesbian feminists and just plain old lesbian woman centered activists need to go around any authority structures that “ban” any of us. This includes “Gendercater” a movie that could easily have been held outside the boundaries of male-identified Frameline in San Francisco.

    The SF Women’s Building used to have a rather large auditorium, and during the SF gay and lesbian film festival, the movie could have been moved there, leaflets could have been distributed outside the Castro theater and at other SF Film festival venues, and Ms. Couch the filmmaker could have been lionized and celebrated despite these idiotic patriarchal oppressor’s censoring tactics.

    Let’s get statistics on just how many lesbian movies are actually shown at these film festivals vs. the number of gay male film. We need to know this stuff!

    We need to locate the venues in advance, keep our email lists up to date, and be ready to take action within 24 hours notice in all the major U.S. cities. We can even take it further to Canada, so our Canadian sisters don’t have to deal with the colonists and colonizers alone. I’m thinking Vancouver Rape Center here.

    We should know after over 30 years of strong lesbian feminist activism what the patterns are, who the usual suspects are, and what the same pattern for the male identified oppressors always is. It can be plain ordinary straight men, transwomen or lesbian hating straight women… the attitudes towards domination, male supremacy, and tokens are the same throughout history –his-story is the term that discribes this.

    This forum is a big chance to really make Dyke space really powerful, and also we can protect our artists with much more passion. We need to support strong Dyke artists in a very very serious way, and we need to be ready to go around the gay male establishment, which seems to be behind all this GLBT nonsense.

    I believe that there is a time and place for coalitions to work together, but again, never at the expense of women. We can all work together on a variety of projects, as long as we collect up front for our support, and never fall for the “oh ladies we’ll do some token thing for you later” routine. You know the excuses they use, and how they con us again and again!

    I can tell you one thing: if white Jewish women persisted in claiming to be women of color, and to continue to try to join women of color organizations, we’d know instantly that this was ridiculous. All groups have their own organizations and spaces — gay men take it one step further and create sex clubs, orgies and other gay male only places, and no lesbians would want to be a part of the degraded zones.

    Are women just afraid to really defend space and really be ready to do what it takes to prevent these enemies into our spaces? You know what happens on the Internet, and thank goddess Heart actually protects this space for lesbian feminist women.

    As an aside, I appreciate Sharon Gaughan’s comments above.
    She gets this, and I particularly appreciated her understanding that people who barge into other cultures or group’s spaces are simply rude.

    Posted by Satsuma | October 29, 2007, 4:43 am
  168. If we have showings of The Gendercator and send the proceeds to Catherine Crouch, wouldn’t it be great if she could then have DVDs of it made to sell to those of us who are too far away to go to the showings?

    Posted by branjor | October 29, 2007, 2:14 pm
  169. Hey, wimmin, I e-mailed Catherine Crouch to ask her whether she has DVDs of the Gendercator available. She was selling them at the Festival. I intended to buy a copy but I didn’t see her after Thursday so I never got a chance to.

    I will let you know what she says. 🙂

    Posted by womensspace | October 29, 2007, 11:17 pm
  170. Yes Branjor, that would be the intent ultimately. You are so right! We want radical feminists everywhere to have access to this sort of thing. It helps inpire discussion, it provides needed income to our artists, and it tells the coalition sell outs that — yes, we don’t let you kill our art!

    Do we have the numbers nationwide to make things like this happen?

    That’s the question!

    “The Gendercator” needs to be seen, and lesbian feminist film makers need to get around any institution that dares to censor us!

    This would be a good way to get back to the grassroots again, because Frameline and “offical LGBT” ideology does not do justice to our vision!

    Posted by Satsuma | October 29, 2007, 11:18 pm
  171. ***“Sometimes I’ve heard transwomen say that they feel “like women” and I wonder, I’m a woman born woman, but do I feel that way to? And what happens if I don’t?”***

    Women born women can’t help but feel like women… we get shit on everyday to help remind us.

    But men that get shit on can’t all of a sudden claim to be women. It just doesn’t work that way. Cos at any moment they can step out of their skirt and become men again… and then the shit stops.

    ~VeggieFem

    Posted by VeggieFem | November 1, 2007, 2:41 pm
  172. Veggie Farm hit a nail on its head, maybe not THE main nail, but a nail.

    Perhaps the genuine claim of transgender identity proves its point. A man transitions into second class citizenship, and people think that the oppressor class willingly does this.

    Then women come out as lesbians, thus giving up all social priviledge in a heterosexually dominated world, taking on the hatred of cowardly straight women so invested in heterosexual privilege that they will willingly side with the enemy against other women, thus proving that lesbian identity is real.

    Who would choose second class citizenship?

    I’ve sometimes thought of this, and yet, as a radical lesbian feminist I have a certain amount of arrogance in the world — I am the vanguard, I am authentic in a world where women will sell their very freedom to marry my most hated enemy.

    It’s a confluence of two groups of people, who will now battle it out on the Internet.

    I don’t think a lifetime of male supremacy, and how we battle it day after day after day is at all the same as a man who goes through an operation and says he is really a woman.

    Even the book “Black Like Me” revealed a truth about black people, through the eyes of a white man who painted his skin black in the early 1960s south, and then wrote about how he was treated.

    This book made a huge impression on me at the time, but now I know how he felt was not at all the same as a black person who had been denigrated by white people for a lifetime.

    What I would like most for MTFs to share is how to defeat these men who rule the world. What is their great weakness, and how can we build a great lesbian trojan horse to fight the final battle on earth that will destroy patriarchal oppression forever. That’s what I want to know from the men who have become women. If you choose to join our ranks, then you must renounce that enemy and tell us how men really are, and what can be done about them.

    It’s a metaphoic analysis, for those of a literal bent, and yet, I do want to know on some level.

    Posted by Satsuma | November 2, 2007, 4:14 am
  173. Question from Heart:

    If this were done to you, what would you want to see happen? Would you want to read your friends writing platitudes about treating everybody — but you, presumably — as an individual? Would you want everybody being really quiet and saying, well, there are a few bad apples, but we have to treat everyone as individuals.

    Answer: I’d be as loud and cantankerous as a bull in a china shop.

    Actually i absolutely understand this, being talked around as though your one experience is the minority when in fact it isn’t. Violence against women is more accepted world wide than any other type of harmful behaviour.

    I’m really shocked and saddened to read of this other side of trandsgendered experience. Maybe its my naivite showing but I always kinda thought anyone who wants to live as a woman despite all the shite that flows our way just for being women, as an allie. Now I’m flashing back through my fashion design school experiences, to my booze can experiences in the gay quarter (best places to dance till the sun comes up inmho) I’m seeing things that only previously made me go hmmm. Now I’m going holy crap Mary Sunshine is right on this. I often noticed the barbified bublliscious fashion of the transgendered male to females I knew and found it a wee bit offensive but never could put my finger on it. BTW the fashion industry is rife with the “style” I’m talking about. Now thanks to Mary Sunshine – I’ve had a huge aha moment. the few I am thinking of at the moment (not all obviously) had this I’m better than a natural woman thing going on.

    Holy crap, what a zinger! My eyes have been opened.

    I’m going to go read up a little more on the topic before I say anything more and put my foot in my mouth further.

    But you know, this thread has helped me understand a part of my life (now past) that had been troubling.

    Thanks again heart.

    Posted by Hazel | November 5, 2007, 3:12 pm

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Queer anti-feminist protest against Reclaim the Night North « Blog of Feminist Activism - March 7, 2008

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog Stats

  • 2,557,952 hits

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Archives

The Farm at Huge Creek, Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, The Feminist Hullaballoo

206672_10150156355071024_736021023_6757674_7143952_n

59143_424598116023_736021023_5026689_8235073_n

Afia Walking Tree

More Photos