Brynn Craffey

A great day for LGBT Californians!

Filed By Brynn Craffey | June 17, 2008 8:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: California, FTM, marriage, marriage equality, protests, shrimp, transgender

I've been watching Bilerico's slide show of California marriages, fighting back tears of joy and wishing I could be in San Francisco on this historic day, rather than stuck at a desk at a temp job which couldn't feel farther from the center of action!

As a queer-identified FtM, I always thought it was bizarre that I could legally marry a female partner but not a male partner, despite the fact that what I do in bed with a male partner more closely matches what heterosexual people do, while what I do in bed with a female partner technically falls under the "same-sex" category. We trannies, I always thought, embody the paradox at the heart of straight people's opposition to marriage equality.

Of course, saying I could "legally marry," is a bit of a stretch: the legality of tranny marriages is regularly challenged in courts throughout the land. Likewise, when people know about us, our relationships are frequently accorded the same opprobrium as those of lesbians and gays. When I was engaged to my last partner, in fact, her family routinely and spitefully referred to us as "lesbians."

As I've said before in comments, despite appreciating the conflicting emotions the institution of marriage evokes among various members of our community, I believe same-sex marriage to be a powerful equality issue. Given that global society accords the institution with such a multitude of rights and obligations--not to mention, respect!--excluding us from that institution sends a powerful message that we are second-class citizens. It renders our relationships and families to a status of "less than" and legitimizes hatred and attacks against us.

I believe that when the first generation of kids grows up knowing it's legal for boys to marry boys and girls to marry girls, it will be that much harder for their bigoted parents to plant the seeds of hatred in their growing hearts.

And I am so happy I lived to see this day! When I was a kid growing up in the 1950's in redneck El Cajon, CA, I would have never imagined such a momentous change would occur in my lifetime. A huge thank you to the justices of the California Supreme Court who did the right thing and ruled in favor of equality!

Another thing about the photos: the contrast between the couples tying the knot, the employees and volunteers doing their jobs and the haters holding their signs couldn't be stronger. Sad, pathetic, small-minded people trying to hold back the swelling tide of history. If they weren't so mean-spirited, inserting their acrimony into our day of matrimony, I could almost feel sorry for them.

Our side has its signs, too. "Stop the hate" and "God Loves Everyone," on rainbow backgrounds are effective. "God hates shrimp-eaters: Leviticus 11:11," on the other hand, is absolutely brilliant!


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Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 18, 2008 6:51 AM

Do I ever know what you mean about being a second class person in my own family.

While I am positive that you didn't intend it that way, the word "tranny" is considered to be pejorative. If we use it, it allows others to use it in a way that denigrates us.

What about "denigrates"? This means, "to blacken". Is this not offensive to people of colour?
I get your point, Shakay but I like calling myself a tranny and a queer before anyone else does. ;-)
A great post, Brynn, raising lots of interesting points. Good to see another "mature" FTM on here, too!

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | June 18, 2008 11:15 AM

I mean no offense, shakay. Like Felix, I'm down with the words "queer," "tranny," "faggot," etc. WHEN it's our own using those words. We've devoted previous posts to discussions about language, something I'm sorry but I don't have time to do here and now. Ultimately, I think it's something we're just going to have to agree to respectfully disagree on.

And thanks for the welcome, Felix!

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | June 18, 2008 11:29 AM

(Robert, you have my sympathy. Regretfully, my relationship ended with the ex I was talking about but one good thing about that is I'm no longer subjected to her family's vilification.)

Those shrimp folks are at every Indy Pride mingling with the protestors. My fave is "Love the shrimper - Hate the shrimp."

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | June 18, 2008 5:56 PM

"Love the shrimper - Hate the shrimp."

That is absolutely brilliant!!!