Monthly Archives: May 2012

how to refer to this trans* person

dear person who sent me an email containing an approximation of this (rhetorical? honest?) question: “should i not apply feminine pronouns to you when referring to the time before you transitioned/were a girl?”,

no.  no you should not.  i was never a girl.  it doesn’t fucking matter that you/the world thought i was a girl because you/the world were mistaken.

the fact that people once thought i was a girl is irrelevant to every respectful conversation you could have about me– because it’s nobody’s fucking business.  on my own terms, i choose to disclose on this blog that i was dfab (designated female at birth).  you have no right to disclose that information because my gender is my own.  as in, not yours’.

it’s extremely rude to refer to a trans* person as anything other than their actual gender– regardless of the topic.  if you’re discussing a time before a trans* person began their transition, refer to them by their preferred pronouns.  if you’re discussing the violent death of a trans* person at the hands of local grues, refer to them with their preferred pronouns.  if you’re discussing the time a trans* person went into outer space to have sex with aliens– something something something preferred pronouns.

while i’m at it, i should probably mention that the same goes for names.  i’ve legally changed my name as part of my social transition and it would be disrespectful/cissexist to even mention my old name (accidents happen, but they still hurt).  my old name was never mine; please pretend it never existed/was on my birth certificate.  my old name has no place in any remotely respectful conversation you could ever have about me.

this is considered common courtesy in the trans* community.  please note that using our old names/pronouns is disrespectful whether or not we’re listening.  some trans* people don’t mind other people using our old names and pronouns– but lots of us are very triggered/offended/hurt when other people use our old names/pronouns.

the only way to get around this is with the express permission of the trans* person.  you may use our old names/pronouns with  our permission.  and you do not have my permission (neither does anyone else– don’t feel bad).

am i touchy about this shit?  fuck yes.  do i assume that you simply didn’t know any better?  yep!  i’m still touchy about it, though.  if you want to know why i’m so touchy about old names/pronouns, read this article about lorena escalera (tw: cissexism, death).  dmab (designated male at birth) trans* people get the brunt of this spidershit, but it affects all of us.

thanks for reading.

seriously but not angrily, ALL the mx. punks

die grue scum!

edited for coherence (june 9th, 2012)

so that whole “die cis scum” thing that has everyone raging?  i’m totally gonna touch it.  with like, my actual hands and not with a pole of any length.

i want to preface this by saying that i’m hoping to start a dialogue on my blog about the “die cis scum” meme, but i’m not going to start calling people out for telling cis people to die (metaphorically/literally).  i’m not judging people who think of “die cis scum” as a battle cry, a cathartic release, or a cry of defiance and pride.  if you feel that “die cis scum” is valuable to you, fucking go for it.  oppressed minorities are entitled to their anger.

i recognize that my dfab trans* privilege could be influencing my opinions on this matter and that i can only speak for myself.  also, i’m white as white as white and race intersects with transness in serious ways; i totally declare my white privilege.

i’m going to talk about what “die cis scum” means to me and why it’s not for me.  hopefully, other peoples will talk about what “die cis scum” means to them and we’ll rock each other’s brain fish neoncore.  also, i love rebuttals.

*   *   *

“die cis scum” makes me feel itchy cuz it can mean that all cis people are scum and they should fucking die, but it can also mean that people who are scum and cis should fucking die.  those are 2 pretty different meanings; one of them threatens my mom with metaphorical death and the other one doesn’t.

partly for the sake of accuracy, i prefer “die grue scum” to “die cis scum.”  when i write “die grue scum,” i’m specifying that scummy cis people should die before they beat up, rape, murder, deny employment and housing to, or otherwise harass my fellow trans* people.  and that non-grue cis people can just keep being awesome, preferably by standing up to the grues.

i also prefer “die grue scum” to “die cis scum” cuz it doesn’t encourage cis people to whine about being called cis.  you know how some cis people whinge on about how they’re just “bio women/men”, or “natal women/men”?  or worse, “real women/men” and that they don’t see why they need to be labelled cuz they’re the default people anyway?  and then they whine about how they didn’t get to name themselves and how “cis” is actually a slur?  i think “die cis scum” sorta encourages that.  that shit is really fucking annoying and i totally don’t want to encourage it.  (edit:  i want to stress that i’m not trying to put the burden of education on the trans* community.  we aren’t obligated to educate anybody; we are entitled to decide if/when we will educate other people.  andy the nerd says it here.)

i’d love to know what all you neon cats think about this.