The Trans Women's Anti-Violence Project: Tennessee state Rep. Richard Floyd, "I Would Stomp A Mudhole In A Transgender Person"
This is Richard Floyd, Tennessee State Representative and sponsor of the Bathroom Harassment Act, a bill that would fine transgender people $50 for using restrooms and dressing rooms.
True to his name, the man is a dick. Here’s a direct quote from this shining example of…
you thought I didn’t really notice. But I did. I wanted to high-five you.
Yesterday I had a pair of brothers in my store. One was maybe between 15-17. He was a wrestler at the local high school. Kind of tall, stocky and handsome. He had a younger brother, who was maybe about…
According the logic used in this ad, being a women depends on having a period. So women past menopause are no longer women as they do not menstruate. Women who suffer from medical conditions and do not menstruate are not real women either. Transwomen, as they do not menstruate, are not real. And no matter what they say, transmen are not men because they do menstruate.
This is not okay.
I can’t stop thinking about the latest transphobic ad.
It’s not the transphobia. It’s not how it rubs in that I don’t get periods, have no ovaries, and can never have kids. It’s not quite even the discussion about trans-versus-drag that some try to bring up.
Well, it’s kind of that. But not really.
Really, it’s that it’s a short story with major flaws. How can I resist rewriting it?
And what’s the biggest flaw? Well, most people don’t know the difference between a man in drag and a trans woman.
What if the story could enlighten them?
A MAN and a WOMAN approach the mirror. They start putting on makeup. Eyelashes. Lipstick.
The woman searches through her purse. She can’t find what she’s looking for.
The man pulls out a tampon from his own purse and offers it to her.
The woman cringes. “Thanks, but… I’m transgender. No periods.” (quieter, bitter) “No babies.”
“Oh, I’m so sorry! That’s so sad…”
“You didn’t know…”
It’s still got issues… I’m not up on etiquette, but personally, I’d be a little freaked out if someone offered me a tampon, for a multitude of reasons. A dude in the ladies’ restroom (one in drag notwithstanding) might freak me out even more.
Still, I think it is far more perfect than the ad that aired, even though I’m missing the ending.
You know, the part that sells the product. I’m not too inclined to write it, though. I don’t want to sell this product.
I have negative attitudes towards men in drag. I don’t understand it, and too often—partially due to people’s confusion of drag and trans—feel attacked by it.
Is this normal? Appropriate? Inappropriate?
In any case, I tried to keep that bias out of this writing.
Is gender something I have? Or, is gender something I do? Or is a gender a group to which I belong?
It depends on who you ask. There are so many definitions.
Perhaps we are born with a gender that, if we’re lucky, matches the gender role which we will express with our gender expression. Gender identity is a superfluous term, as it just means gender.
Or, perhaps we are born with gender identities, that, if we’re lucky, matches the gender we’re expected to do (gender, here, being a verb, as taught to me in my women’s studies classes).
Or maybe we belong to a gender, which has society-given gender roles, which we want to conform to (as humans always yearn to conform), through gender expression.
Or, is gender in itself the set of societal roles and expected behaviors? In which case, gender role is the superfluous term.
Often, the differences in definitions are even much subtler than these.
Yet, so many conflicts can go back and forth forever due to simple difference of definitions for terms. They’ll fight and fight, until they finally realize they’ve been saying the same thing, just in different languages.
Or else, they give up.
I make no secret in my day-to-day life that I am very interested in trans-related topics. Sometimes, people find this odd, especially since I am still in the closet about being trans myself.
For awhile, I’d just say “I know some people…” and go quiet like I didn’t want to talk about it.
Now, I have a “best friend” who is trans.
It’s true: I am my best friend. I am trans.
The people who know me well enough to know of my friends already know about me.
So there’s my handy, convenient excuse.
I have a best friend.
One day, she’s going to move to an exciting city. Perhaps somewhere in New England: Boston… New York… Perhaps somewhere on the West Coast.
She’s going to be liked and respected.
She’s going to be smart. An expert in her field.
People will see her how she’ll see herself: as a beautiful woman, intelligent and happy.
They don’t see her that way right now. Right now, they think she’s a man, because that’s what she appears to be. But it is not forever, and one day…
One day, she’ll move; she’ll be herself; she’ll be free.
She won’t be my best friend anymore. She’ll have lots of other friends.
She’ll just be me.
The supposed morally superior, fighting against injustice camp is always the most ready to be cruel and intolerant not just to me personally, but to other Trans* people too?
MtFs are just men who objectify women? FtMs are just butch lesbians who hate their bodies?
Not all feminists. Pretty sure it’s a very small minority.
And often, they almost seem antifeminist… so I’m not sure they are actually feminists, even if they call themselves such.
Boosting the signal on this. My friend Tamsyn got a ‘misfortune cookie’ with her pizza from Hell that that told her she would ‘marry a transgender’. If you think this is belittling and dehumanizing then you might like to know that email@example.com is where you can share your thoughts on this.