gay pride parade
lesbian gluttony parade
bisexual greed parade
trans wrath parade
questioning envy parade
ally sloth parade
asexual lust parade
I’m totally up to throw a trans wrath parade
W E S H A L L D E S T R O Y A L L W H O M I S G E N D E R U S
Heh. “Ally sloth.”
When you are hurting, there will always be people who find a way to make it about themselves. If you break your wrist, they’ll complain about a sprained ankle. If you are sad, they’re sadder. If you’re asking for help, they’ll demand more attention.
Here is a fact: I was in a hospital and sobbing into my palms when a woman approached me and asked why I was making so much noise and I managed to stutter that my best friend shot himself in the head and now he was 100% certified dead and she made this little grunt and had the nerve to tell me, “Well now you made me sad.”
When you get angry, there are going to be people who ask you to shut up and sit down, and they’re not going to do it nicely. Theirs are the faces that turn bright red before you have a chance to finish your sentence. They won’t ask you to explain yourself. They’ll be mad that you’re mad and that will be their whole reason alone.
Here is a fact: I was in an alleyway a few weeks ago, stroking my friend’s back as she vomited fourteen tequila shots. “I hate men,” she wheezed as her sides heaved, “I hate all of them.”
I braided her hair so it wouldn’t get caught in the mess. I didn’t correct her and reply that she does in fact love her father and her little brother too, that there are strangers she has yet to meet that will be better for her than any of her shitty ex-boyfriends, that half of our group of friends identifies as male - I could hear each of her bruises in those words and I didn’t ask her to soften the blow when she was trying to buff them out of her skin. She doesn’t hate all men. She never did.
She had the misfortune to be overheard by a drunk guy in an ill-fitting suit, a boy trying to look like a man and leering down my dress as he stormed towards us. “Fuck you, lady,” he said, “Fuck you. Not all men are evil, you know.”
“Thanks,” I told him dryly, pulling on her hand, trying to get her inside again, “See you.”
He followed us. Wouldn’t stop shouting. How dare she get mad. How dare she was hurting. “It’s hard for me too!” he yowled after us. “With fuckers like you, how’s a guy supposed to live?”
Here’s a fact: my father is Cuban and my genes repeat his. Once one of my teachers looked at my heritage and said, “Your skin doesn’t look dirty enough to be a Mexican.”
When my cheeks grew pink and my tongue dried up, someone else in the classroom stood up. “You can’t say that,” he said, “That’s fucking racist. We could report you for that.”
Our teacher turned vicious. “You wanna fail this class? Go ahead. Report me. I was joking. It’s my word against yours. I hate kids like you. You think you’ve got all the power - you don’t. I do.”
Later that kid and I became close friends and we skipped class to do anything else and the two of us were lying on our backs staring up at the sky and as we talked about that moment, he sighed, “I hate white people.” His girlfriend is white and so is his mom. I reached out until my fingers were resting in the warmth of his palm.
He spoke up each time our teacher said something shitty. He failed the class. I stayed silent. I got the A but I wish that I didn’t.
Here is a fact: I think gender is a social construct and people that want to tell others what defines it just haven’t done their homework. I personally happen to have the luck of the draw and am the same gender as my sex, which basically just means society leaves me alone about this one particular thing.
Until I met Alex, who said he hated cis people. My throat closed up. I’m not good at confrontation. I avoided him because I didn’t want to bother him.
One day I was going on a walk and I found him behind our school, bleeding out of the side of his mouth. The only thing I really know is how to patch people up. He winced when the antibacterial cream went across his new wounds. “I hate cis people,” he said weakly.
I looked at him and pushed his hair back from his head. “I understand why you do.”
Here is a fact: anger is a secondary emotion. Anger is how people stop themselves from hurting. Anger is how people stop themselves by empathizing.
It is easy for the drunken man to be mad at my friend. If he says “Hey, fuck you, lady,” he doesn’t have to worry about what’s so wrong about men.
It’s easy for my teacher to fail the kids who speak up. If we’re just smart-ass students, it’s not his fault we fuck up.
It’s easy for me to hate Alex for labeling me as dangerous when I’ve never hurt someone a day in my life. But I’m safe in my skin and his life is at risk just by going to the bathroom. I understand why he says things like that. I finally do.
There’s a difference between the spread of hatred and the frustration of people who are hurting. The thing is, when you are broken, there will always be someone who says “I’m worse, stop talking.” There will always be people who are mad you’re trying to steal the attention. There will always be people who get mad at the same time as you do - they hate being challenged. It changes the rules.
I say I hate all Mondays but my sister was born on one and she’s the greatest joy I have ever known. I say I hate brown but it’s really just the word and how it turns your mouth down - the colour is my hair and my eyes and my favorite sweater. I say I hate pineapple but I still try it again every Easter, just to see if it stings less this year. It’s okay to be sad when you hear someone generalize a group you’re in. But instead of assuming they’re evil and filled with hatred, maybe ask them why they think that way - who knows, you might just end up with a new and kind friend.”
“Being a ‘public figure’ whose life was recorded and transmitted to others used to be the tax on having a certain amount of power. If having a public Twitter account now qualifies you, as they suggest, we’re counting a lot of people just trying to talk to their friends and maybe make some new ones. For journalists, these people require an ethical axis beyond public-private—one that acknowledges the high personal stakes these conversations involve for their participants and not, say, Hamilton Nolan, who wrote the Gawker post flippantly dismissing the entire debate. That Gawker would sooner make the vacuously provocative claim that these people are using Twitter wrong than listen to them explain how they’d like Twitter to be used is a sad echo of the argument that got us here in the first place: those women were asking for it with their attention-seeking behavior.”
an excerpt from “Twitter, Rape, and Privacy on Social Media” (x)
This arose from a discussion about what sexual assault survivors were wearing when they were attacked in an effort to continue to debunk rape apologists. It was a very moving discussion originated by a Black woman on Twitter who is also a survivor. Well of course, the mainstream feminist movement could just let them have their moment… or report on it responsibly. They had to insert themselves… and did it in a disgusting manner. When they were called out on it, they first responded by saying “well, the tweets are public so we have every legal right….” to which i ask the question do we really need to legislate basic decency? After that it turned into painting the woman who lead the discussion as an angry Black woman attacking the nice, helpful white ladies.
meanwhile, her picture was plastered across BF without her consent… and of course it made its rounds on Facebook and everywhere else… even her younger brother sent her a text message showing how she was plastered on the site.
I was a part of this discussion and one of the survivors who spoke out though my tweet in particular wasn’t used in the story. The original conversation was difficult and cathartic. But the mainstream media and many White feminists decided to abuse and exploit this situation. BuzzFeed and Poynter have engaged in irreparable damage and clearly abuse power. This claim that “if I can see it, it is mine” in online journalism—especially when it is almost always top down abuse of power and especially so when the target is not only a woman of colour but a Black woman—is unbearable. Hard to get into detail for those who don’t use Twitter and aren’t seeing it unfold in real time. Not interested in listing names as to not cause those harmed even more harm. But it is active violence now. I hope the Black woman who started the conversation seeks an attorney at this point. Mainstream media’s answer to "don’t exploit sensitive tweets on sexual assault" is "well don’t share then!" Sounds familiar? Rape culture.
Post-going-viral foreword: I’d love to link to blog/longform pieces by trans women about the Grantland article (here, at the top, above my words). I am searching, but plz send links to @handler on Twitter, or email michael/at\grendel/dot\net or contact via Tumblr. Thanks. -mh
Dear Caleb Hannan & the editors of Grantland:
I’m not a habitual reader of Grantland, because I’m not much into the work-a-day issues and discussions of the sports world. I do love long-form journalism about specific people, and culture, and pop culture issues, and the works that I’ve read on Grantland have been satisfying enough that I kept on wondering why I wasn’t making it part of my regular reading rounds. The other week, I stumbled across Chuck Klosterman’s article about Royce White and mental health, and I shared it with my SO, and she shared it with her family, and we had a deep and connecting discussion about it which I am still appreciating.
Despite my lack of regular connection to Grantland, I am compelled to write in to you about Caleb Hannan’s article about Dr. V, which I read today, mostly in openmouthed disgust, and with increasing horror as it built to its conclusion.
There’s no question that the design, origin, and performance of a new golf club of mysterious provenance, from outside the historical establishment of equipment design, is a compelling and interesting story on many levels. There’s no question that the behavior and history of an erratic and inconsistent inventor, whose claimed superlative credentials persistently cannot be verified, is also compelling and relevant to the narrative.
There’s also no question that the way that Dr. V’s existence as a trans woman was researched, outed, and used in the narrative of the story was monstrous, stereotypical, transphobic, hurtful, and wrong.
I’ve noticed a funny thing about Melissa McCarthy. Well, besides the obvious, that she’s funny. But I’ve noticed that when Jennifer Lawrence talks about her weight, she talks about how much food she eats, and how she’s never going to diet to be thin. And when Melissa McCarthy is quoted about her weight, this is what she says:
“I don’t really know why I’m not thinner than I am.”
“I want to be healthy.”
“I just don’t lose weight easily.”
“Sometimes I wish I were just magically a size 6 and I never had to give it a single thought.”
Because Melissa McCarthy actually is a fat woman, she isn’t allowed to make brash statements about body acceptance. She has to apologize for her body. Every single one of those quotes might as well have just said, “Sorry I’m fat and you have to look at me, everyone.” But it’s all she’s allowed to say, in the confines of our culture. If Melissa McCarthy had said, “If anybody even tries to whisper the word ‘diet,’ I’m like, ‘You can go f– yourself,” the response will most assuredly not be, “How brave! How strong! What a good role model!” The response will be, “What a bad example, encouraging people to be unhealthy! We have an obesity epidemic! Open your eyes, fat is not healthy, sexy, or acceptable! How very dare she!””
Let me preface this by saying I haven’t had a serious pointe class for about three years. But tonight, I found myself with a little victory. Some background: a little over a year and a half ago, after dealing with some serious arrhythmia problems, I started to go into heart failure. Around that time I had pretty bad edema in my legs. I had open heart surgery that fixed my heart and saved my life, but the edema never seemed to go away. With that extra edema, my pointe shoes no longer fit me. Which was fine, since I was content to take my classes on flat anyway. But once in a while I’d try my old pointes on just to see if they’d fit. They never did.
A few days ago I noticed that my edema was all but gone. What had been 3+ pitting edema that had plagued me as a tell tale sign of my former heart problems was now… gone! So I had to try. I had to see if I could get my old pointe shoes on. These are nothing technical, but what they represent is so important to me. I’ve been working hard over the past year and a half to get my life back together, and this is a sign that maybe, just maybe, I will be able to recover from this 100%.