• Gay BlogAds


  • Gay News Watch


  • Chris Tweets



  • « Once more into the ENDA breach | Main | The science of anti-gay hate »

    December 01, 2007

    Twink-gate update

    Posted by: Chris

    Adam_dUPDATE: At the end of the post.

    A little birdy tells me that Metroweekly has scheduled photo shoots with the top three finalists in its Coverboy of the Year contest, though it isn't telling the three which of them won the tally. Still, word is that my old roomie Adam is in the Top 3, and a certain tranny boi who loves "The L Word" and dates women is not.

    It also seems that in the last 24 hours, certain transgender list-serves have caught wind of my original post about Alexander and are posting vitriolic comments accusing me and many of you of all sorts of "transphobia."

    A lot of the reaction is to the suggestion that I (or you) called Alexander a lesbian disguising her/himself as a "tranny boi." That's not something I wrote or believe.  What I was trying to argue is that Alexander's bio had much more in common culturally with lesbians than with gay men. And since Alexander likes women and is dating a girl, it was passing strange to include him in a competition for gay boys.

    Alexander_o_blog I did include a reference to a column by lesbian journalist Jennifer Vanasco, who has written about how it depresses her and some other lesbian feminists that at least some butch lesbians feel the need to identify as transgender rather than stretch the definition of "woman" to include a more masculine identity. Whether that's true or not I would leave to others better informed to decide. I emailed privately with Jennifer about my post and she backed away some from the views in her column.

    Regardless, my more basic point was cultural about a "gay male" identity. A number of the commenters to the original post are female-to-male transgender folks who insisted they are gay men because they are men attracted to men. That may well be. I wasn't writing about them and, frankly, if Alexander liked boys and preferred "Six Feet Under" or "Ugly Betty" more than "The L Word" -- and wanted to take an Atlantis cruise rather than Olyvia -- I would be much more comfortable with his inclusion in the contest.

    UPDATE:

    A reader responded to this post by pointing to some of my own words in the originalTwink-gate post that led some to believe I was calling Alexander a lesbian. In particular, I wrote this:

    • The editors of Metroweekly — which began years ago as Michael's Weekly, a typical gay bar rag and now identifies as "Washington D.C.'s GLBT News Magazine" — never come right out and explain how a lesbian became a "Coverboy," but we find a clue in Alexander's willingness to talk about transgender issues.
    • Is a butch lesbian who identifies as a tranny boi no different than a gay twink, despite his passion for "The L Word" and Angelina Jolie? If Alexander wins Metroweekly's Coverboy of the Year, will he "raise awareness" of transgender issues, or just raise a few hackles about how political correctness can rob the fun out of even the silliest of beauty contests.

    Can't argue with a direct quote. It appears I'm guilty as charged. Since I know I never had it my head that Alexander is female, much less a female, then I can only assume I was being purposefully provocative. My choice of words was unfortunate because it's not what I actually think.

    (That first sentence is especially a mess; it led one reader to think I was calling MW a bar rag, understandable given my somewhat tortured construction. I actually meant it used to be a bar rag. It transformed years ago into one of the nation's better gay entertainment weeklies.)

    I do think there is something to the argument that Jennifer Vanasco made about how there is a slippery slope between butch lesbian and FTM tranny boi, but in the grand scheme of things, I'm a fish out of water arguing the point too strongly. As someone comfortable in his own gender, I can only take others' word for it on how it feels to be trapped in the wrong anatomical one.

    |

    TrackBack

    TrackBack URL for this entry:
    http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d834527dd469e200e54f93721d8833

    Comments

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Dec 2, 2007 2:10:24 AM:

      Ah, but you see, Chris, Alex apparently IS in the correct gender.

      However, the problem here is that, if Alex is a male, he is a straight males, since he is attracted to women. Since he can't be a straight male, because straight males are the evil oppressors, he tries to claim he's still gay -- which means he's same-gender attracted. But, since the gender to which he's attracted is female, he's a lesbian.

    1. Lucrece on Dec 2, 2007 8:57:36 AM:

      There is no "female" gender. That is a category for sex. Sex and gender are wholly different concepts.

      He can be a straight male if we go by gender, or he can be gay if we go by sex. I don't know why people make such a huge deal out of what some individual may choose to call him/herself.

    1. david on Dec 2, 2007 9:13:28 AM:

      Chris -- the fury of the transmen displayed in the letters linked to your post are fascinating. One FTM claims to be so "male" that they cannot stand women or anything womanlike and must be around gay men. If a real gay man made such a statement, they would be hung for misogyny. The double and triple standards used by transmen (I am a former woman and now a transboi dating women and call myself gay so therefore I am gay), along with magical thinking (beards and body hair = being a man despite having a vagina), Uber-subjectivity/sophistry (because I say something is, therefore it is -- regardless of objective reality or what anyone else on the planet has to say). These attitudes are part of the New Queer community. The majority of gay men today seem to welcome this development -- one formerly "gay" writer has now "come out" as being "open" to both men and women. This is the opposite of my experience where the closet forced gay men to have sex with women (often to the point of marriage) to conceal our real selves or prove something to others and to ourselves. Only when we were finally liberated to be ourselves could we leave that temporary and expedient bisexulity behind and become fully gay (men loving/fucking other men). This notion of "gay" is apparenly now just quaint. Polymormous perversity is now mandatory. I'm so glad I am old and can enjoy my sex and love with other old men like myself who call ourselves gay and who left polymorphous perversity behind decades ago in the confusion of youth. I wonder how many of these transmen will be so "radical" 30 years from now when they are in their 50s. I also wonder what unknown health problems will result from long-term and excessive use of male hormones by biological women.

      One more thing -- bisexuals and trans people seem to me to be heterosexual and not homosexual in the true meaning of the word -- sex with different people as opposed to sex with the same people (male/male or female/female) -- bi and trans are having sex regardless of gender or genitals or anything of that kind therefore, they are heterosexual and not technically homosexual. I've never understood why they linked to the homosexual movement and not the heterosexual majority where they are merely one more variation of sexual difference.

    1. david on Dec 2, 2007 9:15:48 AM:

      Chris -- the fury of the transmen displayed in the letters linked to your post are fascinating. One FTM claims to be so "male" that they cannot stand women or anything womanlike and must be around gay men. If a real gay man made such a statement, they would be hung for misogyny. The double and triple standards used by transmen (I am a former woman and now a transboi dating women and call myself gay so therefore I am gay), along with magical thinking (beards and body hair = being a man despite having a vagina), Uber-subjectivity/sophistry (because I say something is, therefore it is -- regardless of objective reality or what anyone else on the planet has to say). These attitudes are part of the New Queer community. The majority of gay men today seem to welcome this development -- one formerly "gay" writer has now "come out" as being "open" to both men and women. This is the opposite of my experience where the closet forced gay men to have sex with women (often to the point of marriage) to conceal our real selves or prove something to others and to ourselves. Only when we were finally liberated to be ourselves could we leave that temporary and expedient bisexulity behind and become fully gay (men loving/fucking other men). This notion of "gay" is apparenly now just quaint. Polymormous perversity is now mandatory. I'm so glad I am old and can enjoy my sex and love with other old men like myself who call ourselves gay and who left polymorphous perversity behind decades ago in the confusion of youth. I wonder how many of these transmen will be so "radical" 30 years from now when they are in their 50s. I also wonder what unknown health problems will result from long-term and excessive use of male hormones by biological women.

      One more thing -- bisexuals and trans people seem to me to be heterosexual and not homosexual in the true meaning of the word -- sex with different people as opposed to sex with the same people (male/male or female/female) -- bi and trans are having sex regardless of gender or genitals or anything of that kind therefore, they are heterosexual and not technically homosexual. I've never understood why they linked to the homosexual movement and not the heterosexual majority where they are merely one more variation of sexual difference.

    1. anonymous on Dec 2, 2007 9:34:24 PM:

      The interesting thing about protest letters from trans activists is that they seem to be written from a form letter - they are all the same.

      First - accuse any gay person who disagrees with them of vicious back-stabbing transphobia.

      Second - bemoan the state of the gay community (because gay people are still allowed to speak our own minds instead of toeing the trans party line).

      Third - laugh mockingly at any gay person who doesn't adopt trans-speak and say that the stupid gays will be driven off the queer scene.

      Fourth - say they will work harder to make the stupid gays agree with them (or they will drive off the stupid gays and have a 100% bisexual/trans community.


      I wouldn't care if they did this somewhere else, but threatening to drive gays out of the GAY community which gay people built, is ridiculous.

      I really can't understand why the gay community didn't tell the trans/queers to go away a long time ago.

      The trans/queers claim to have a strong community. Fine. Take it somewhere else and leave gay people alone.

    1. Double T on Dec 2, 2007 9:58:00 PM:

      Lucrece,
      ………There is no "female" gender. That is a category for sex. Sex and gender are wholly different concepts.
      He can be a straight male if we go by gender, or he can be gay if we go by sex. I don't know why people make such a huge deal out of what some individual may choose to call him/herself…….

      YES. There are two genders, MALE and FEMALE. And the people who seem to be making the HUGE DEAL are the ones who cut off their penis and go thru life “bitter”.
      I use to be very open minded about the Trans Community, but the more comments I read the crazier you folks appear to be. I’m sorry that you were born the correct gender, but the attacks I read on this blog are sickening.

      The Gay Community is NOT your enemy, but you all seem hell bent to change that.

    1. Kevin on Dec 5, 2007 8:16:30 AM:

      Every time I read Double T's postings I can't help but hear David Smith's voice in my head...

    1. a few words on Dec 5, 2007 3:18:44 PM:

      I re-posting this because its worth it.....

      I understand both sides. Some GLB people may not understand trans people but what I object to is the judgment. Shouldn't the GLBT community be more accepting being that we're so discriminated against? We should understand that most and I just don't get how GLB people are so ignorant.

      Also for those of you who say Trans people should join their own fight, we'll heres a few things to think about.

      -Trans people are either going to or coming from a gay relationship or gay/straight status. Some trans people are also Bi.

      -I am a trans man and have been very active in the GLBT community well before I transitioned. I worked on ENDA YEARS ago when it almost passed in the Senate in the mid-90's. I also continue to work on numerous political and educational programs to fight ignorance and for GLBT rights.
      **So when you're thinking of people who fought and helped ENDA pass remember trans people contributed to that too.
      AT first I was upset over there not being an exclusive ENDA, but I understand the political process enough that I believe it does have to be done in steps as long as the rest of the community remains committed to it.

      I have been with a woman for years and we agreed that we wouldn't get married (even though we legally could) until the rest of the community has the right to marry. I continue (as I always have ) to be open about my trans status to educate others.

      All in all I think its really sad that we can't come together on this issue. That we are discriminating against ourselves. Even i fa GLB person doesnt understand trans issues we should still support each other. Look at our straight allies, they may not understand what exactly its like to be GLBT, but they support us and are a great asset to the cause. We are a family and should act like one. I know I will continue to fight for GLBT rights for ALL of us and I hope that everyone else does the same.

      Posted by: a few words | December 03, 2007 at 04:13 PM

      A few words,

      That was a sensitive and intelligent post. I applaud your public service work and evident compassion. That being said, I do not think it is "sad" that we can't come together on this issue. This issue is being forced down the gullet of gay and lesbian folk in the most appaling and despicable fashion.

      I am not queer and I certainly am not a member of any lGBQTR2D2 community. I am a proud gay man and as someone who has faced discrimination I certainly support the transgendered fight. However, the immaturity, baby-bawling unevolved emotional tantrums of your trans male brethern is absolutely sick-making and turns me off of your movement.

      Read back through some of these posts. Have your ever read such specious nonsense? Ridiculous! I would also like to inform you that outside of a handful of online writers and activists, the gay community isn't buying the whole "don't throw us under the bus" nonsense.

      On a final note: I personally find it offensive in the extreme that my views (and the gay men who share them) are being labeled hateful and prejudiced. How dare these FTM people cheapen the very real fight of the persecuted with their fallacious rhetoric and bullying.

      Posted by: wisdom warrior | December 03, 2007 at 04:52 PM

      Wisdom Warrior, (and others)
      I totally understand what you're saying. As I said before I do understand both sides. I just ask that you and others keep in mind there are some trans people that you will dislike, but I ask that you dislike them on personality or approach not trans status. Thats all I ever ask of anyone. If you are going to dislike someone think of the reason why, don't discount an entire group of people- thats goes for everyone out there.

      There are people that we're not going to get along with within our own community I just wish we could respect each others opinions and not attack each other on a personal level which really has nothing to do with the issue.

      I see the disrespect on both
      sides and like I said thats whats sad. Either way, this was a good article because it got people talking and we have alot of work to do within our own community before we can expect others to respect and support us.

      Also one thing I have noticed which may be pissing off the older GLBT generations is a sense of entitlement without the willingness to fight for it. I see this across the younger generations gay , straight or otherwise. There are some great kids out there but, I see alot of kids expecting people to listen or things to change over night without putting the work into it.

      The GLBT community has fought for years on a number of levels and although we have a great deal further to go , we've come a long way and we have our elders & allies to thank for that. I think we need to remind the younger generations about the struggle and history. We shouldn't have this bickering back and forth I think some of us are acting like brats. We should have an open , honest , mature discussion and thats what I think is sad.

      I know this doesn't apply to all people and its just my view, but it comes from years of being out and being active.

      I do hope people wise up and learn to constructively talk about this , thats the only way to progress.

      Posted by: a few words | December 03, 2007 at 05:13 PM

      Terrific post by A few words! I have to add though that you are anything but brief! LOL!!!

      It is the entitlement issue that bugs me the most, you hit the proverbial nail on the head. My opinion is that the gay and lesbian rights movement has been hijacked by a small group of people with a large agenda for social inclusion. I support the Trans march toward liberation but please get off of my bus and do the work for yourselves.

      I also have a hard time with the absolute Stalinism of the commentary ooming from these young FTM trannie bois. They are not winning hearts and minds - and it isn't because of a lack of compassion or willingness to understand their issues. It's the absolutely crass force feeding of poorly framed social work/gender studies theory. The victimologies are also endless. I could go on and on but I won't....and this will be my last post on the subject.

      A few words, I wish you well and every happiness.

      Posted by: wisdom warrior | December 03, 2007 at 05:35 PM

      Wisdom Warrior,
      My last post as well- I really will try to make this one brief!! I have such a problem with that on these subjects I feel so passionate about.

      I just want to say this was a great, mature, constructive discussion, which is proof that it can me done and I greatly appreciate you sharing your thoughts.

      We should all be willing to listen as much as we want to be heard and only expect as much out of something as we're willing to contribute.

      Wisdom Warrior, I wish you and other well and every happiness too.
      Take care!

    1. Monster Beats Sale on Nov 26, 2011 2:01:20 AM:

      Wisdom Warrior, I wish you and other well and every happiness too.
      Take care!

    The comments to this entry are closed.

    © Citizen Crain - All Rights Reserved | Design by E.Webscapes Design Studio | Powered by: TypePad