20 November 2009

International Transgender Day of Remembrance 2009

Today marks the 11th International Transgender Day of Remembrance (aka TDOR).  Today, we remember the people who have been killed because of the hatred that exists towards transgender people.  Gwendolyn Ann Smith, who founded the Remembering Our Dead website, puts it best, I think:
The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgendered people, an action that current media doesn’t perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten. Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgendered people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who’ve died by anti-transgender violence.
 I think it's very important to note that almost all of those who are killed are poorer trans women of colour.  Because we live in not just a transphobic world, but a misogynistic and racist one as well.  Oppressions do intersect.  I am likely to be protected from murder by several of the privileges I possess.  Which means that I have a responsibility to make sure that I don't make this day all about myself or the trans women most like me.

Because of the nearness of the US Thanksgiving holiday to Transgender Day of Remembrance, I will be travelling today.  Fortunately for me, the nearest observance to me will take place on Sunday in Manchester (UK, not New Hampshire) so I'll still be able to attend a remembrance.  I'll be able to stand with others and make sure that the dead are remembered and celebrated.  Nonetheless, even with the stresses of travelling, I will be keeping my thoughts on those who are no longer with us because of the hatred in this world.

I'm sorry to make this a brief blog post, but I do need to deal with the aforementioned travelling.  Anyway, do two things today.  First, check the TDOR website for an observance near you and go to it.  Second, I recommend reading the following blog posts on TDOR (not all of which are from this year) and which I will keep updating at least until I have to pack my laptop:

"the drowned and the saved" by queenemily at Questioning Transphobia
"11th International Transgender Day of Remembrance" by Helen at Bird of Paradox 
"International Transgender Day of Remembrance" by kaninchenzero at FWD/Forward
"Day of Remembrance" by goodbuytjane
"Not Forgotten." by Dori at A Truly Elegant Mess
"Transgender Day of Remembrance, and an appeal to fellow Mummy bloggers" by Ruth Moss at Look Left of the Pleaides  (Highly Recommended) (not because she's my fiancĂ©e but because it's on what cis people need to do)
"International Transgender Day of Remembrance" by Arwyn at Raising My Boychick
"TDOR 2009" by Chally at Zero at the Bone
"how to mourn" by queenemily at Questioning Transphobia (Highly Recommended)

15 November 2009

Wider Boycott for Feministing - Disability Failures

Okay, I realise y'all are going to think I'm obsessed with Feministing.  I'm not, honestly.  But, they are a major feminist site (to the extent a classmate emailed our my class one of the comment-failtastic threads on stealth trans women having sex when I was co-teaching the class lectures about transsexuality), so it's not like they can be ignored.  They provide a community and resource for feminists online, especially younger feminists in the US.  So, as a feminist, I can't ignore them.  That said, let's move on to what I'm on about this time, because it's not just a repetition of how they hurt trans people, especially trans women.

Quixotess has posted asking people to please boycott Feministing because of their bad faith in engaging with feminists who attempted to get Feministing to stop failing on disability issues (I know, it's shocking that they fail on more than just trans issues).  This is important for me because of something I've never mentioned here: I'm a person with disabilities (PWD).  Feministing's failing on disability directly affects me, insuring that I'm doubly marginalised there.  But, even more importantly, it highlights how Feministing is unwilling to change their behaviour when the harm they are causing is pointed out to them and how they are willing to give lip service to change without actual change.  It is one thing to be unaware of one's privilege, another thing to have trouble dealing with it once one's privilege is pointed out, but it's altogether a different kettle of fish to claim you're going to work on changing your hurtful behaviour and then continue as though you never said anything.  I detest hypocrisy and Feministing, especially in the person of Courtney Martin, is swimming in hypocrisy (read Quixotess' linked post for details).

As part of the effort to let people know of Feministing's problems, I am also linking to meloukhia's open letter to Feministing, which started the attempted engagement of Feministing on disability issues in the first place, in the hope this will help raise it on the Google results page.  Unlikely, I know, but it's better than doing nothing.  It also provides a good history of the effort.

If you're not already boycotting Feministing for their trans failures, then I hope the realisation that this is neither an isolated problem nor that they are people of good intent who just have problems understanding is enough to join the boycott.

(h/t to Questioning Transphobia)

05 November 2009

Feministing Boycott? Still On For a Reason

If you look at the column on the right, you will see there's a linked badge about boycotting Feministe and Feministing.  No, I've not forgotten to take it down.  The boycott remains.  I can't say what good it is doing, but I certainly am not going to devote my energy to Feministing where the commenters make it downright hostile to trans people without fear of moderation.  Check out the transphobic comments to this post about how having sex with cis people while in stealth is not sexual assault if you don't believe me.

Hopefully tonight I will finish up what is turning into an epic post snarking Julie Bindel's latest transphobic blatherings.