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26 February 2012 @ 07:52 am
A question for Cathy Brennan  
You write in this piece:

As a Gay Activist, I was able to quell the cognitive dissonance I sometimes experienced when engaging in political work with my Gay Brothers because, well, we were all Gay – we shared the common experience of same-sex attraction and desire. As I got older, though, and more Late-Transitioning Heterosexual Males decided to become “Lesbians,” I felt less and less comfortable and willing engaging in advocacy in the “Gay Community.”

The reason for this is quite simple – Gayhood Is Significant. Being socialized in the Gay Community is different from being socialized in the Straight Community. We have different rituals, different culture, different routine – not better, not worse. Different. This is why I am more comfortable in the Gayborhood than I am in Glen Burnie. The Gays are my people. Even the Gay Boys who engage in misogyny all day, every day – I definitely don’t like them, but I know them. We as Gays and Lesbians have the common experience of same-sex attraction and how that same-sex attraction shapes our both our personal lives and how we as the Gay and Lesbian demographic fit into the larger society.


So is this forty-three year old, a late-transitioning 'lesbian' who should be denied entrance to lesbian spaces because she doesn't have a shared gayhood?

No, the answer will come, because this woman is [large theory-based answer that means cis].

And for those of you who want a larger reply to Ms. Brennan. Rest assured, it's coming.
 
 
 
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Roz Kaveneyrozk on February 26th, 2012 03:58 pm (UTC)
And, let's face it, Brennan is a fucking liar because she hates all trans women who are dykes regardless of our background because she does not want to know the intense variety of the trans community. Where does she stand on teenage transitioners who were never involved in any sexual activity that wasn't lesbian? Where would she place me? Out as trans in my teens and living in the queer world as much as I could while still at school? In the closet about being trans while at uni though regularly going to another city to experiment with transition, mostly i the queer world? Having one 'straight' relationship with a close friend who tried to talk me out of transition? Sleeping with a lot of men during transition and coming out as lesbian two years after surgery? How does that make me NOT PART OF THE QUEER WORLD? I was having illegal sex with men before Brennan was born; I've been a lesbian for thirty years

And that silly carping doctrinaire person thinks she knows my life...
valeriekeefevaleriekeefe on February 27th, 2012 12:01 am (UTC)
"Where does she stand on teenage transitioners who were never involved in any sexual activity that wasn't lesbian?"

I mean, I transitioned at 26, but beyond that, I qualify on that count. Not even a consensual kiss from someone who didn't know my gender identity. (There was this one time at a bar, but I was way too drunk (thanks friends for passing me a coffee mug full of liquor and telling me to drink, oh to be twenty and a moron...) to even realize what was going on until it happened.)

And yes, she's really like most cissexists, like most dyke-bashers, making it up as she goes along. I have no time for her. But on Monday, I do have two-thousand four-hundred-and-seventy-seven words.

Not counting citations and directions to Baltimore OUTloud's contact page.
Marja Erwinmarjaerwin on February 26th, 2012 11:53 pm (UTC)
And lesbian feminists have always acknowledged this of sexual orientation, even when many have denied this of sex-identity. A certain second-waver, who I'll not name, wrote that [2001, p. 17] "Lesbians have taken a particular journey involving an acknowledgment to their Selves and to others of their Lesbian Be-ing."
valeriekeefevaleriekeefe on February 27th, 2012 12:22 am (UTC)
Yeah, it never makes sense to me... if NGLTF's numbers are even halfway accurate, the best way to get more lesbians is to rescue them from the sad facade of a boyhood they're hiding behind.
Marja Erwinmarjaerwin on February 27th, 2012 12:43 am (UTC)
Of course, many of the same arguments about hetero-mimicry, and the like, have been used to purge [cissexual] butches and femmes from lesbian spaces, which was just as misguided. I'm not sure about recruitment, though; it seems better to try to increase visibility for both cis and trans lesbians. I also wish straight womyn could overcome their straightness.

Note: I'm still not seeing any alternative language which is quite equivalent to cis and trans. I admit faab and maab mostly cover similar ground but not the same ground.
(Screened comment)
valeriekeefevaleriekeefe on February 27th, 2012 03:01 am (UTC)
I'm sorry but the policy on this blog is to not allow anonymous comments. If you would like to stand up and be counted, I can then publish what you have to say.
Cathy BrennanCathy Brennan on March 11th, 2012 10:52 am (UTC)
Dude, lesbians are female. Females are welcome all day long.

valeriekeefevaleriekeefe on March 11th, 2012 10:56 am (UTC)
Once again, dude, we see that your position is pretty disingenuous...

Also, you still haven't defined what you mean by late-transitioner... I'm imagining five would be too soon.

My reply, by the way:

Edited at 2012-03-11 11:10 am (UTC)
bart_calendarbart_calendar on March 11th, 2012 01:59 pm (UTC)
And someone who is born with male parts but eventually realizes that deep down inside she is a woman, but remains attracted to women is both a female and a lesbian.

If anything they have to deal with more of a struggle than cis gendered lesbians, because they have to deal with both feeling like they were born in the wrong gender and with society telling them they are heterosexual when they are not. Plus the general societal push of "well if you think you are a woman then why don't you like men?"
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )