Phil Reese

Open thread: Who are the "real women"?

Filed By Phil Reese | September 25, 2009 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: sexism, transgender, transmisogyny, transsexual

I met a very special lady in 2003 named Rachel Crandall. Rachel is a lawyer and a philanthropist in Detroit. Rachel is one of the single nicest people I've ever met in my life. Rachel, though her driver's license says "F," is also transgender, and she has not undergone sexual reassignment surgery yet.

Then there's my friend Dallas (before that Vanessa and before that Derrick). Dallas sees herself as a woman, but sees gender-expression as more fluid. She lives as a woman, but she does not dress to pass. She dresses like a punk-rock tomboy. Dallas has fought very hard to be accepted as a woman, and at one time, passing was very important for Dallas. But Dallas did not want to give up who she was in order to express her true gender.

A debate has been raging this week on Bilerico about women like Rachel or Dallas, or men like my friend CJ in Michigan or Scott Turner-Schofield in Atlanta. Women are questioning whether or not Rachel is a woman. These were not women born women, "natal women," or whatever term you prefer. These are "women of an operative past." Some may call them transsexual women, but not everyone agrees with being labeled as transsexual. They transitioned, now they are women.

I support choosing your own label, and applaud them for their courage. The only problem is some of these women don't feel the same way. Though Rachel is a woman in every aspect of her life, she has not been able to go through the same process that these women have gone through. To some of these commenters, Rachel is not a woman. Dallas, Rachel, Scott, CJ--these are my kin, family. It hurts me to see them belittled, and I have to come to their defense. This bizarre social hierarchy within the transgender/transsexual/women of operative past culture seems designed to disempower.

I appreciate what the women of operative past have been through, and support them as women. If you do not want to be called by a 'trans-' term, I understand. You've struggled and you've had to deal with a lot of doubt and oppression.

But why then are some of these women turning that same prejudice on someone else who is just starting the journey, or embarking on a very different journey? Why does someone have to outrank someone else? Why is one struggle worth more than another?

The challenge: To understand one another

In an effort to understand some of these comments, I visited a linked blog--and right away was greeted with bad vibes in the title "TG Nonsense." This is a woman who embarked on her own journey to be accepted as a woman. But now that she's arrived, she seems to have a huge problem with people who are going about that passage in a different way.

According to Merriam-Webster, a bigot is "a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance."

The disdain and dehumanizing language on this blog toward transgender people, and the smug iterations of how much better the author is because she 'passes' can be defined as nothing other than hate and intolerance. So, after reading the blog, I called it.

I don't like burned-bridges, though. I stand by my statements, but I also want to allow all sides to be able to respectfully explain their points of view here. However, I challenge everyone to treat one another as equals, to commit to trying to see the other person's point of view, and to never challenge the value of that person as a human being.

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Well written and expressed Phil,

Yeah, when you start talking about Transgender people its like talking about an onion your peeling. There’s lots of layers, pain and tears involved and you don’t really know anything about the experience until you have a Transgender person as a close personal friend or are a transgender person.

And that’s before you add the Intersexed element. It makes it even more complicted.

In the end, don’t judge, stay flexible and never assume anything and always treat Transgender (or IS) people the same as any other people you know.

Phil, you are stepping into a minefield and started by throwing the term bigot around from the get go.

The original issue was a simple one, transgender people need to stop once and for all claiming and "educating" that transgender is an inclusive term that includes women of operate history. This war has gone to terrorist tactics in the past. It is now 15 years old and finally we are fighting back because of the very real damages to our lives and civil rights that have resulted.

It was always about the right of self identification and basic respect of differences.

I wrote you privately.......I won't be goading into yet another review here only to have someone claim I violated the TOS.

Um, we'd be happy to not include you under the term "transgender". No need to show your gratitude as long as you stop demonizing all the trans people who don't match up to your "true transsexual" category. Thanks.

The original issue was a simple one, transgender people need to stop once and for all claiming and "educating" that transgender is an inclusive term that includes women of operate history.

I'm not sure how that's actually possible. Throughout my experience of transition, I've gone through several iterations of identity and need to alter my gender presentation. I began by thinking myself a cross-dresser. Then I considered myself a non-operative transgender woman. I played with a genderqueer identity for a little while, but now I'm working on saving up for my bottom surgery.

At what point do I suddenly get to magically claim my status as a "real woman" as opposed to a mere "man that looks like a woman" or something like that? Who decides this? Making it a little less personal, who decides whether a person is a "true transsexual" and who is just a pretender? How much transition is "enough" in these cases?

I think that a term like "transgender" is necessary for all that were assigned one gender and go on to present as an alternate gender, as the situations and conditions that these folks run into have much in common, both personally and politically. Sure, there are distinctions between various individuals and subgroups within that community, but the people within have very similar needs.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 9:57 AM

And when will you acknowledge when those of us like myself DO recongise your right to self-identify as I have done repeatedly in the past?

Cause every time we do there is no response to that? Why?

I recognise every humans human right to self-identification. Including post-op TSs who don't reject the TG umbrella for themselves and including people like yourself who do.

So why keep saying none of us do when some of us do?

Oh, to answer your question on a personal level..

I am as real as any other woman, as real as it gets. I consider calling me a transgender a basic insult about on the level of fighting words/hate speech. I did not "trans" my gender, it has been consistent my entire life......female/woman. I happened to be born a true hermaphrodite and was surgically made a transsexual at birth. I've corrected my body as an adult. I have that in common with classic transsexuals who are born with a neurological intersexed condition where literally the entire central nervous system is female (male for FtMs) This condition has now been confirmed as actual by more than 300 separate and distinct scientific studies done on virtually all known dimorphic differences between men and women. It is established as medical fact as much as it is possible to do so. Those born with this condition are eventually driven to correct their bodies to the maximum amount possible. This is the definition of transsexuality as it was understood.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 10:10 AM

And what about the report of one of the scientists involved in those studies expecting that related biological causation would be found for the whole gender spectrum?

What about the point that all forms of transgemder have not been given the same tests to rule in or out biological causation for those too?

The gene found so far more commonly in transsexuals is still found in non transsexual people implying multiple genes and/or epigenetics as part of the causation.. which would lead to the probaility of stronger and weaker cases.. oh and that'd mean a probable gender spectrum wouldn't it, just like other neuorological variations like the autism spectrum.

The science isn't finished. And it doesn't go all your way. And only when full comparative studies are done can these probabilities be ruled out.. basic scientific method.

I think it's only fair to be a bit more explicit about what Phil was referring to, which is people on this site an others who misgender trans folks, say they're not legitimately the gender they present as, etc.

When a transgender woman is referred to as "Mr." and "he" intentionally, it's bigotry. It's meant to hurt and it's about delegitimizing a group of people's self-identification, which you seem to think is important.

To Phil, I'll just say that people in a minority setting up hierarchies to say that they're better than other people in their group is an old story and it isn't about to stop any time soon.

I'm not sure about "women of operative past" being an inclusive term for all trans* women. For example, I've been living full-time as female for 2.5 years, and part-time for a year before that. I have yet to receive any "operation" of any sort, but I present and am received as female by everyone I have contact with, including my coworkers, fellow women in the locker room at the gym, potential lovers, etc.

I'm a woman, but I have no operative past, and I know others that don't ever plan on getting any such "operations."

I personally prefer the phrase "woman that was assigned male at birth" to differentiate me and folks like me from a cisgender woman. have a penis, and have no desire to get rid of it.

You don't have a vagina, and have no desire for one.

And yet you self-define as a woman, with the support of the transgender political machine behind you.

And you are willing to force your way into women's locker rooms, with the transgender political machine behind you.

There's a bit of legal trouble brewing in my state. Someone like you felt they had the 'right' to decide they were female, and then legally force their way into a woman's locker room, showers and all.

i just can't wait to see what legal backlash is going to result from this, and make it harder for true pre-operative transsexual women like me to get through the process.

You see, understanding the mindset of women is as simple as understanding yourself. If you have one.

The little reality bubble that the transgender political machine has created does not hold water for...well, *anyone* not existing within said reality bubble.

i would be mortified at the idea of being seen, by anyone, pre-operatively. And post-operatively, i would be equally mortified seeing a man or his penis in a locker room with me.

Why do i say 'man' in this hypothetical scenario? Because no woman would do that to another woman.

It's a simple matter of dignity and respect. For yourself as well as others.

And what a surprise. Every leftist, liberal, pro-LGB *cissexual* female friend and relative i have agrees with me. 'Women' with penises that they have no desire to lose + intruding on women's locker and shower rooms = insanity.

Unless you live in your own little reality.

But that's what it's become now. Common sense equals 'hate'.

You're making some assumptions about me here. I do actually intend to get surgery at some point. In fact, I'm currently saving half my paycheck every month in an attempt to do so. But I don't believe that the choice of whether or not I plan to switch my bits up should grant or prevent me access to basic facilities. In fact, when I first started going to the gym, I was still identifying as non-op.

Supposing for a moment that I did not change my mind. In this scenario, do you think, then, that I should go into the men's locker room? Take my bra and skirt off in front of the "other" guys and let them ogle my female-shaped breasts while I change into my sports bra and exercise pants?

Since I keep my underwear on, they'll never see my penis in there, and I look female for all other intents and purposes, so what should I do when EVERYONE THERE starts telling me that I'm in the wrong room and I should go use the women's locker room like the OTHER women?

Explain that, despite my name, identity, appearance, physical attributes, voice, hair, and everything else about me appearing female, I have this bit of genitalia that makes me a man, so therefore, I'm here with the rest of my bros?

Unless I whip my dick out and show it to them, they'll never believe me. I'll just cause a scene and likely get kicked out of the gym for being an nuisance.

I'd rather keep doing what I've been doing for almost a year. Use the women's facilities, get changed without anyone seeing any bits they don't expect, and get to my workout without causing a scene or any issues.

Seems simpler and less annoying to the other patrons that way, really.

'Women' with penises that they have no desire to lose + intruding on women's locker and shower rooms = insanity.

An interesting question:
Suppose you discovered that there was a woman in your locker room that had a penis. How do you determine if she's
A) A woman with a penis that wants to remove it but can't afford it yet.
B) A woman with a penis that wants to remove it but can't due to medical issues.
C) A woman with a penis that wants to remove it but doesn't think its worth the surgical risks.
D) A woman with a penis that actually LIKES her penis and would never remove it.

And incidentally, which of these characters are "actually" women, and which ones are not? How do you determine this beyond just taking their word for it?

I'd add an E)

An Intersexed woman with CAH, whose anatomy if it were 1/16 of an inch shorter would include an "enlarged clitoris" rather than a penis as such.

A micrometer would be needed. Even then, it would differ depending on which definition is used in the geographical area you're in.

Biology is messy. We must neither refuse to acknowledge that there really is a genuine divide between male and female, nor that when you look closely at the boundaries, they are mere approximations with no "bright line" between them.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 11:15 AM

Good point you raise Zoe.

*nods* Very good point.

And of course, this complicates the question of who can go into what gendered spaces. I think it's actually quite a complicated issue that needs to be better analyzed...

re: 'D'--You busy later?

Growing up in the agriculturally-focused midwest, it seemed to be accepted without question that some women might not be recognized as such, at first, when they were hard-hitting equal partners with their husbands, or the primary/only person keeping the family farm going. It didn't seem to matter what the husband's status might be, there was more acceptance or admiration than stigma, and it didn't matter when these women came to church in boots, jeans, and close-cropped hair.

I also knew men who were not exactly conforming to norms related to gender presentation.

Maybe I'm just being naive or seeing things too simplistically, but the lives of Rachel, Dallas, Vanessa, and Derrick strike me as natural extensions of the people I grew up with.

I'm a guy who is read as masculine, and at the same time, I can't bear to cut my hair much at all, never mind in any semblance of what might be fashionable for men. To be called Ma'am is a compliment, because it means the hair is somewhat soft and flowing, read as feminine, and messing with people's expectations and stereotypes.

There are moments when I want to scream... C'MON, people, you already know women you thought were men at first, and vice versa... it's not that hard to ask them how they'd like to be addressed, and adjust accordingly.

While it's true that (as one commentor put it)this is a real mine field. It needn't be. While I share a medical condition with my transgender sisters, there, the comparison stops. Each of us has a past full of experiences unique to us alone. I won't tolerate being told what I am and I won't tell someone else what they are or tolerate it when I facilitate a support group meeting. I have a VERY strong opinion of those of us who are post-op and seem to think (or feel) it accords them some special status. I am post-op---SO. The circumstances of my life made it possible for me to to undergo GRS. The details of my life growing up and the state of my sense of being essentially dictated to me that I wanted surgery. Still, does that "make" me a woman? I don't know. When I began my transition, it was with the idea that I wanted my body to match my soul as close as is humanly possible. I've done that and I am still a transwoman (just my opinion.) I'm not particularily happy about it but, there are some basic female things I just won't ever experience no matter how hard I shut my eyes and wish. The absence of these experiences will forever color my perception and concept of what it means to be female. It was really interesting to me as I began transition - the need for "the surgery" was so very, very, urgent, yet as I began to resocialize and learn and grow in a less distorted manner the "need" for surgery began to lessen until one day it ocurred to me that I had no idea what all the urgent-urgency had been all about. It was then, for me, that I knew I was ready for surgery. The IDEAL that it embodied had taken it's proper place in the pantheon of transition landmarks. I hope I never stop transition - really. I have an entire life to live. I want to spend it growing with as much humility as possible into the potential that the universe has bestowed on me.
Amy Hunter

This has been extremely enlightening thus far, and for the most part everyone has stayed fairly respectful of one another, which is what I was hoping for.

I want to note that I don't think its healthy to use any blanket statement of any group of people--unless its an obvious traits: all Iowans live in Iowa (unless they've been exiled!), so on. Pre-op or non-op transgender folk do not deserve to be dehumanized as was happening on the other thread, I don't care what experiences anyone has had; you've had unfortunate experiences with toxic individuals of the group. Having conflict with individuals does not give ANYONE license to condemn an entire group.

A note on some of the statements that people made on the other thread, as well as this. Breaking the law, and harming other people is breaking the law and harming others. I don't think that has anything to do with someone's group identification.

Someone being intentionally deceptive about their sex to manipulate or take advantage of others is violating others and ought to face social consequences. I DO NOT THINK that living as and presenting as the gender that you identify as is deception at all.

What set me off the most on the other thread (other than visiting that toxic blog, TGnonsense), was when a commenter suggested trans people ought to be left out of ENDA. It just seemed cold, callous and cruel to suggest that an entire group of people does not deserve to be able to make a living because one doesn't like their rhetoric. It hurt me deep.

I don't like Rush Limbaugh AT ALL. I still think he deserves the right to make a living. I may not agree that it should be a living that has anything to do with speaking or writing, but that's another issues entirely. Everyone deserves health, food, shelter and security. In order to have those things, you need a job.

Not everyone is privileged enough to afford GRS, unfortunately. Becoming a woman isn't as simple as deciding--certainly this is well understood. However, the process has a financial factor which just can't be done by most transgender women.

There ought NOT to be someone policing WHO is a 'legitimate' woman, and who is not. It may sound touchy-feely to say that it should be up to the individual, but there is something practical about that too. Would Jerry Falwell have considered our post-op friends 'legitimate' women after surgery? Of course not. He'd call them abominations! Well what if the decision on who's a woman and who isn't was up to him?

Its poppycock to think that I would defend anyone who is presenting as a woman in order to deceive and con people. Its also ludicrous to think I would ever condone some of the horrible things that some people of ill-will have done to these poor post-operative women. Threats and attacks are never acceptable.

But again, I must stress, its outrageous to lump an entire group of people in with some bad individuals that came from that group.

Unless they're Nazis. I hate Nazis. :-)

Er Phil, your lack of experience here is showing.

Prior to the spread of "non- op transsexual", transgender as an umbrella term (one coined btw by a absolutely rabid transsexual hater)....if you were outed the automatic assumption was you were post corrected or on your way. Today, thanks to the colonization and then erasure of transsexuality, the automatic assumption is you are a "chick with a dick". Prior to the "education" that women have penises, no less a religious nutcase than Pat Robertson himself considered post corrected women to be women without question.....he said that in on his tv show. Islamic mullahs "get" transsexuality. I had zero problem explaining it to republican congresscritters, less actually than I did to liberals (and I am about as far from a conservative as it gets before you jump conclusions)

That's real harm Phil, life threatening harm, major difference in how you are treated...and I witnessed it happening.


Transgender as an umbrella term was coined by a transsexual non-binarist in the early 90's. The term you note is transgenderist. Which is still used today and for the same purpose.

There has been no colonization. To state such is an outright lie.

Transsexualism has not been erased. Indeed, in the last five years, it's become the opposite of it to an extent unheard of in the 40 years previously.

The assumption that one was a "chick with a dick" was present as far back as 1940. And thinking otherwise is classist, as the idea it wasn't such was due to the particulars of what was an overwhelmingly middle class society.

Only seven mullahs "get" it. All from a rather small group of rebellious sorts that have noting to do with the majority groups, ad all deriving from the teachings of one man, who used (and who's followers continue to use) it to reinforce heteronormative gender roles that are extremely sexist as a matter of course (equally so against men and women) by American standards.

What was witnessed was the shift from counterculture to mainstream. It is a conservative position to find that dangerous and harmful.

The thing is Phil, the entire world decides who is a woman and who isn't every day, every person. The first thing everyone does meeting someone is gender them, it takes place on a level so basic that only if something "isn't right" do we even notice.

Paradox, I have never once met a classic transsexual woman who would use any facility that involved female nudity, even just potentially before surgery. It is one of those things we just would not dream of doing. It is totally disrespectful of other women and if there was even the slightest chance you might be exposed, too humiliating to consider. Even when my group of women friends insisted on my joining the gym with them before I was corrected, I refused. Like I said, every single classic transsexual woman I ever met felt exactly the same way and I've met hundreds.

Like I said, every single classic transsexual woman I ever met felt exactly the same way and I've met hundreds.

I think this is circular, or maybe assuming your conclusion. You define as "classic transsexual" those who feel as you do. So if someone were to use a women's locker room at some pre-op time, and later have surgery and no longer consider herself trans-anything, does that mean you'd exclude her from the label "classic transsexual," even though she is just as corrected as those you define as "classic"?

every single classic transsexual woman I ever met felt exactly the same way and I've met hundreds.
So let me get this straight. It doesn't matter that I'm accepted by everyone that I interact with as female. It doesn't matter that I appear female to everyone, to the point where doctors ask me about my latest period. It doesn't matter that most cis people I run into tell me I'm the most "genuine" trans woman they've ever met. It doesn't matter that cis women accept me as a cis woman, even when they know I'm trans. It doesn't matter that I've identified as a female since I was 3 years old. It doesn't matter that I've gone through incredible pain and hardship to transition my appearance from that of a male to that of a female. It doesn't matter that, in a few years, I will have a vagina. It doesn't even matter that I feel uncomfortable in the gym because of the contstant fear of being exposed, but have decided not to let that stop me from doing the things I want to do.


ALL of that gets trumped by the fact that I don't feel *uncomfortable ENOUGH* at the locker room. Therefore I'm not *really* a woman and am just a man cross dressing as a female.


I really think that my comfort level at the gym should be less of a consideration in evaluating my gender than some of the other things, honestly... Your definition of what makes a "real" transsexual woman seems rather limited and not at all correct.

Hell, by your definition, I know a few cis females that wouldn't qualify as women in your book, since they really wish they had penises. Or does that make them men now, too?


It is indeed designed to disempower. IT is intended -- with absolute intention -- to enforce strict gender roles, and it is based in ignorance, conjecture, and, bluntly hate.

The trans community has a lot of elements within it that seek to disempower -- from language to peer pressure. There is a great deal of subtle essentialism to all of it.

I have reached a point whee I *intentionally* speak to anyone that can be described as transsexual or transgender or gender variant.

And I don't give a damn about whether or not it pisses them off, because, in the end, these particular people are acting out of bigotry, fear, sexism, institutional racism, and willful ignorance.

I *did* give a damn -- for about a year, I tried to find middle ground, and each time I approached them with it, it was met with yet another excuse. For some, the issue with GLB folks is fed by deep seated homophobia (the site you went to is a great example of it). For others, its just an aspect of the intense anger and deep seated frustration that trans folks have with what cisGLB folks have indeed done to us. For yet others, its about fear of the word "sex" in some areas (for some of this type of person are not about transsexual, but about transgender -- they say the same things about those that claim the word transsexual, even when they meet all the requirements).

In the case of the group you've noticed and called out here, it is about the fear of being seen as something other than what they want so desperately to be seen as. In the case of many of them, they transitioned decades ago, and as they have come to the internet they have found that things have changed so much it terrifies them. And this is the reaction to that fear.

The trans community is incredibly diverse -- and part of that diversity means that we have among us the same kinds of people who oppose us.

This gives us several options, but in the context of this site, it means you can ignore them, you can deny them and bar them, or you can give them all the attention they crave.

I have reached a point where I ignore them. There is no good faith in their efforts.

And without it, it's nothing more than what it genuinely appears to be: hate.

Oh, surgery doesn't make one a woman, I've met a number of post op crossdressers. It's neurology that makes you a woman or not and a female neurology will eventually reject a male anatomy......that you can take to the bank.

A pre-operative classic transsexual is a woman. A post op autogynophile is not. 'taint rocket science.

A post op autogynophile is not.

I have no problem with how you label people, to be honest. If you want to say that I'm a cross dresser or an autogynophile or whatever you want to call me, I really could give a shit. Your definitions of who I am and who others like me are really is your business. I won't deny you your right to say anything you like about your beliefs about who people are.

What pisses me off about your posts, and what seems to piss a lot of other people off, is what you say has to occur because of your strict definition of a "true transsexual."

Example: I'm a transgender woman that passes almost 100% of the time as female. As part of this, I am not welcome in male spaces, and I frankly have no interest in being in male spaces since I identify as female.

However, by your definitions, I am not female (apparently because I'm insufficiently uncomfortable in the locker room, but I talked about that in my other comment) and because of that, I should not be allowed access to the women's locker room or other women's facilities.

And thus begins my issue with your position. I need a place to change when I use the gym, and I need a bathroom to pee in when I need to pee. The men's room would be absurd of me to go into, since I am perceived 100% as female. If you would bar me from the women's room, then I would have absolutely no place to go to the bathroom or to get changed. You are forcing me to be a second class citizen by refusing to allow me to participate fully in society.

You can think I'm sick or a festishist or whatever else you want, but when you start saying that I don't have a right to a normal life, then we have a problem.

Does that make sense to you?

actually nothing you've said in the agregate has made sense....

I have confined myself to speaking to the general, you've been applying it as personal.

First you started off as a self identified crossdresser, now you say you always identified as a woman from a young age. To me, you are words on a screen. Contradictory words at that. Thus I am in no position to say anything about you personally not based on what you've said here.

The studies: see Zoe Brain's website or TS-Si, both have most of them in their archives. There are over 300 of them now.....

Transsexuality has a medical meaning, I stick within that meaning. It has specific criteria, I stay within those.....obsessed with genitals?....hardly, just had this conversation hundreds of times. Dys calls me a liar and, the period between the change in attitude was the past 15 years, not the past 5 decades. It was real, I experienced it directly with my transition, it spanned socio-economic classes.

In the real world, it is not hard to see who was born with classic transsexuality and who wasn't. There are now tests. I know because I helped develop them and they have been tested by top level psychiatrists and found 100% accurate which is highly unusual. The female neurology model is now considered proven beyond any reasonable doubt, can be tested significant in predicting post surgical satisfaction (which is why it matters)

And I'm out of here since this has turned to insult and abuse yet again

I have confined myself to speaking to the general, you've been applying it as personal.

Yes, because your generalizations invalidate my experiences.

First you started off as a self identified crossdresser, now you say you always identified as a woman from a young age.

This is hardly contradictory. The experience of being transgender is a complicated one that requires much introspection and a lot of time trying to understand what these feelings mean. I always felt like a woman, but I never understood how to describe those feelings. Based on my information, I thought perhaps it just meant I was a cross dresser. I think that a large number of trans people go through a process like this, where they slowly modify and adjust their self-identification as they come out of denial and come to a greater understanding of themselves. I feel that your classification system does not leave people room to go through this identification process, and instead sets limited hard lines for them to either have or not have.

The studies: see Zoe Brain's website or TS-Si, both have most of them in their archives. There are over 300 of them now.....

I don't have time or interest in hunting for studies that support your POV here. I believe that, in the course of discourse, the onus for that is on you. I'm asking you to link me to the studies that specifically discuss exactly this issue. I have to believe that those 300 studies are on a variety of topics. Which *specific* studies support your claims that I am questioning?

Transsexuality has a medical meaning, I stick within that meaning. It has specific criteria, I stay within those.

Two things: A) I have yet to see any medical community agree on a definition of transsexuality beyond the WPATH definitions. B) Even if a medical group identifies this, they should be subject to the same evidentiary requirements that you seem to be ignoring when you make claims like this.

What are these "specific criteria" that you are talking about here, if they are not the WPATH criteria? Where have you seen transsexuality have "medical meaning" beyond the WPATH requirements?

I believe that this "medical meaning" comes from you and other folks like you and doesn't have any scientific merit. And because of that, you can't invalidate someone else's use of the term "transsexual" based on your personal definitions of what that term means. Based on the definitions of WPATH, which is the only body *I* know of that has defined the term, most of the people you say are "not true transsexuals" are actually classifiable as transsexuals.

There are now tests. I know because I helped develop them and they have been tested by top level psychiatrists and found 100% accurate which is highly unusual.

Studies. Evidence. You're making pretty wild claims here, and I see absolutely no supporting evidence. Links. Paper titles. Something beyond a link to "300 studies" that have some vague link to what you're talking about.

I'm out of here since this has turned to insult and abuse yet again

If I have insulted you, I apologize. I simply am trying to say that your judgement of other people here is mis-guided and hurtful to people. I don't mean to deny your own personal self-identification.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 27, 2009 12:43 AM

I have confined myself to speaking to the general, you've been applying it as personal.

Oh, please. Everything you ever say on Bilerico, RB, is personal, and directed to tear down those of us who dare to think differently than you and your like-minded friends on the subject and use of the word "transgender." The only thing that surprises me is how utterly unchanging your arguments remain, no matter how eloquent the people are who debate you--and Paradox, you have been impressively eloquent and made some sterling points here.

RB, I honestly don't care if you want to nurture the delusion that you are simply a woman, no different than any other woman despite being born into a male body and how many years of being forced to live as a boy/man? But you show up here week after week and insist that any trans identified person, like me, who wants to acknowledge their difference, their history, and their complicated identity by using the term trans or transgender and who wants to be inclusive in their use of those terms are somehow oppressing you. Get real. If you don't identify as transgender, don't call yourself trans. Problem solved. Why waste all this time on trans comment threads if your medical problem has been resolved and you're happy with your life?

As for this pointless argument, I am so tired it. I haven't seen it evolve in any significant way in the more than 15 years I've been living as trans.

Oh, and another thing that never changes: it is almost ALWAYS an argument among MtFs. Maybe I'll write a post about that one of these days but I don't have time now other than to say that, were one to read this comment thread, one would easily believe that female-to-male transsexuals simply don't exist.

I appreciate your pointing out the gendered aspect of this. This particular incarnation does seem to be very specific to trans women and I've been pondering that a lot.

The dynamic is not exclusive to trans women, though. The Butch/FTM border wars is a prime example of that. And trans vs genderqueer turf war, at least as I witnessed it, was almost exclusively about female assigned genderqueers.

I wonder if this reoccurring instance carries some unique or distinct elements, or if it is simply another incarnation of the same dynamic among women. Where and how does misogyny fit into this, as I can't imagine it not influencing what's going on here. I'm still pondering.

Amen on the transmen's invisibility

Um, no, you do not stick within the limits of transsexualism as medically defined.

Transsexualism is defined by WHO, and they define it as GID, and they do allow, explicitly, for non operative transsexuals.

And the DSM reflects this.

Now, you, RB, and each have people we know involved with it -- I'm working with Peggy, who is following ethical rules of conduct and you have someone else, who remains unnamed, who is not in charge of the overall direction.

You've said on several occasions that things are going to be terrible, and horrible, and...

I've said not really.

But that's where it *will be*. Not where it is. And you are not speaking about where it is, but rather, where you'd like it to be.

And so you are not being truthful here.

It's neurology that makes you a woman or not and a female neurology will eventually reject a male anatomy

Can you point to some studies that back up a claim like this? My anecdotal evidence shows that both cis and transgender women sometimes have an interest in having "a male anatomy." This probably conflicts with your anecdotal evidence. Now, I've run into hundreds of trans and cis people, and I suppose you have too. So perhaps our anecdotal evidence is insufficient to prove these claims of yours.

Therefore, I'd like to ask you what studies back up your claim that there is such a thing as "female neurology" such that it "rejects a male anatomy." Can you provide some links or titles of papers on the topic?

And there you have it.

Try to explain the difference between a medical condition and an "identity". Try to explain that using transgender as an umbrella term against the expressed, long time objections of both classic transsexuals and intersexed people is an act of verbal violence, defining others against their will.....

and you are a bigot, an elitist, a racist, homophobic, you "demonize" by pointing out difference....we just need internal transphobia and lousy self esteem to complete the set.

And you wonder why we finally got pissed off?

Too bad you lied, RB

Seven times in the second paragraph, which undermines your first.

You are not those things because you seek to remove yourself from such.

You are those things because you erase the identities of others in your quest to do so; you are such because you choose to do all of that in a manner which is, in fact, all those things.

Stop doing it in that manner -- and in fairness, you do somewhat less of it than many others -- and you might have an argument.

You don't, you can't (because you, too, are trapped by the rules of identity), and, sadly, you won't.

"Dallas sees herself as a woman, but sees gender-expression as more fluid. She lives as a woman, but she does not dress to pass. She dresses like a punk-rock tomboy. Dallas has fought very hard to be accepted as a woman, and at one time, passing was very important for Dallas. But Dallas did not want to give up who she was in order to express her true gender."

That does sound more than a bit like me. I do often feel enormous pressure to try to pass though. If I'm wearing more overtly feminine clothing, perk up my voice, I pass without a hitch. The thing keeping me from passing 100% is simply this: is that really me? I don't know. It seems disingenuous at times. I abhored the performative aspects of masculinity, why should I accept femininity in the same context? The thing we are arguing about here is the individual seeking affirmation of their own identity vs. the masses forcing identities onto others. I see myself as a boyish woman, and the people who don't accept me see me as a girlish man. It's a sacrifice I pay for being true to myself. It's worth the price, but when it comes to things like limiting my access to healthcare and all that jazz, it becomes something nobody should be subjected to.

Radical Bitch, you seem highly concerned about genitalia. Considering the myriad of nuances of sex and gender, why focus so much on the genitals? The mere existence of intersexed individuals provides massive insight into the capacity for individual expression of gender. Call me a "Radical Bitch" but I think the whole binary is a sham.

I was born a hermaphrodite, please refrain from using that as an example if you weren't. For your information, intersexed people are getting just as militant about being colonized by transgender as classic transsexuals are. Most know exactly what their gender is regardless of body somatics they are born with, some have to fight like hell to have that recognized.

My consistent gender identity established, in my mind, the reality of the neurological differences in the sexes, well understood and documented differences. Studied and confirmed differences that go to such mundane concerns as the effectiveness of psycho-pharmacology, informational processing and even what smells can be detected by a neurological female and not by a neurological male. The existence of people born as I was proves the differences in the sexes, not disproves it.

I carefully explained that surgery is not a dividing line and yet I'm obsessed with genitals?

If you define yourself as transgender (a third sex category) you have defined yourself out of the binary.....seems simple enough. If you tell me that with a female neurology, a corrected female norm body, hell, in my case even genetics that are more organ systems XX than XY....if you tell me I am not a woman or female, that I never will be, that I am some third gender/sex forever when I know differently I am not the bigot, the one defining others. Deconstruct your own gender to your heart's content....deconstruct mine and you are way the hell out of line.

And yes, I'll say it, some opinions are worth more than others. I have a deep background in sociology, psychology, anthropology (both physical and cultural) and a genius level IQ who has access to and spent thousands of hours in discussion with some of the best minds in the psych profession. I am a trained observer of sociological trends who has applied that to the study of ancient history resulting in breakthroughs in understanding.

The model I developed independently for separating autogynophiles from classic transsexuals has been tested and found almost 100% accurate by top level psychiatrists. It predicts post surgical satisfaction which is why it's valuable.

Stacked against that is saying I'm a liar, a bigot, classist, hater, sexist, racist all coupled with a Luddite denial that the growing body of clear scientific evidence doesn't exist. I have carefully avoided responses to the personal here, I got nothing but responses to the personal in return. This conversation has been anything but respectful.

I'm used to it. It's called the double standard and almost every woman is familar with this.

Most know exactly what their gender is regardless of body somatics they are born with, some have to fight like hell to have that recognized.

Studies and evidence, pls?

If you define yourself as transgender (a third sex category) you have defined yourself out of the binary.

Most "transgender" identified people I know identify as part of the binary. I think that you are misrepresenting these individuals as being a "third sec category."

I have a deep background in sociology, psychology, anthropology (both physical and cultural) and a genius level IQ who has access to and spent thousands of hours in discussion with some of the best minds in the psych profession.

And yet you seem to lack some basic understandings of evidence, statistics, and related data.

I hang with a lot of really smart people. Most of them don't talk about their IQs...

And I've met hundreds... :P

The model I developed independently for separating autogynophiles from classic transsexuals has been tested and found almost 100% accurate by top level psychiatrists. It predicts post surgical satisfaction which is why it's valuable.

What scientific journals were these studies posted in? Where did you publish your results? What third party organizations independently verified your information?

all coupled with a Luddite denial that the growing body of clear scientific evidence doesn't exist.

Perhaps because we can't seem to find any of it. Care to help us out? It would very much help your position and give us more to talk about.

If you define yourself as transgender (a third sex category) you have defined yourself out of the binary.....seems simple enough. If you tell me that with a female neurology, a corrected female norm body, hell, in my case even genetics that are more organ systems XX than XY....if you tell me I am not a woman or female, that I never will be, that I am some third gender/sex forever when I know differently I am not the bigot, the one defining others. Deconstruct your own gender to your heart's content....deconstruct mine and you are way the hell out of line.

Since you seem to be replying to me, I don't really understand your saying this. Who is saying you are not a woman or female? If you want to define yourself as not "trans" that's your own perogative. How is my own view of my own gender stepping on yours? Because it overshadows your own in the media? You can be as binary as you want babe, that doesn't mean my own fight isn't worth fighting. Do you simply want people like me to not exist? What do you want?

What do you want?
I think that RB and other "HBS" type transsexual woman want to have those of us that don't match her definition of "true transsexual" to stop demanding to be recognized as the men and women that we present and identify as. From what I can tell, those of us that don't match her definitions ought to stop "pretending" to be our gender and instead go back to acknowledging that we're really just cross-dressers/fetishists.

Or something. I really don't know and find the whole thing rather offensive to pretty much everyone. Frankly, by RB's definitions, I know some cis females that wouldn't qualify as "true women."

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 27, 2009 2:25 PM

I think that RB and other "HBS" type transsexual woman want to have those of us that don't match her definition of "true transsexual" to stop demanding to be recognized as the men and women that we present and identify as.

Paradox, I think what they really want is to have been born into female bodies--something essentially unachievable. I went through years of wishing I'd been born male, but eventually came to terms with who I am. Now I realize that my condition in a world in which many people basically fear or hate people like me, is due to ignorance and prejudice, not to the circumstances of my birth. Their inability to emotionally process their desires, however, along with with their understandable frustration, devastation, and fury, lead them to lash out at other transgender people. I guess it's easier to blame us for their unhappiness, than go through the years of self-examination it requires to come to terms with it all.

The fact they're not addressing the real heart of the matter, however, means you will never convince them through argument. It's like trying to put out a forest fire by dumping buckets of water into the ocean.

Wrong again Brynn....

The issue always was not being lumped in with those who transition to trans-somethings, drag queens and crossdressers. This rant of yours in nothing more than the sad old "poor self esteem, self loathing, internal transphobia" garbage those of you who are not comfortable in the binary always come up with in a lame attempt to force us into your "never be real" self defeating third gender nonsense in your own misery loves company mindset. It's called sour grapes.

As far as we are concerned, once our birth condition is corrected, we are on a par with everyone else and the truth is, that used to be universally understood out in the world and is still understood when explained today.

You don't get to define us, you don't have the right to silence us, you absolutely do not have the right to colonize and then erase us. Those who think transsexual is an identity are the problem. It's a medical condition, a treatable one and once corrected should not define someone anymore than having your appendix removed should.

Stop using transgender as an umbrella, correct the general public that this was wrong and we will go away, not one damn minute before that.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 10:34 PM

You don't get to define US either. And we, including those transsexuals that are fine with it, constitute the umbrella and give it validity by our existence.

Now I'm one in favour of moving the umbrella term to Sex And Gender Diversity S&GD as is already used in human-rights circles to allow greater inclusion and cooperation between TG and Intersex activists without IS being eclipsed by TS and TG. It also allows for better terms like CisGender TransSexual and Transgender CisSexual.

But you don't get to rob those transsexuals of their right to self-determination as part of transgender nor S&GD. I and others respect your right to self-determination but doesn't your own argument on it cancel out your own demand? So try some cogent consistency. Reciprocal ethics... human rights. Terms worth exploring i think.


Can I ask a curious honest question? I hear you talking a lot about the transgender people who have wronged you and how horrible they are. Is it the fact that they have wronged you that is deplorable? Or the fact that they are transgender? Is it possible to separate out the two?

Prior to last night, when this thread exploded, I had only seen one person labeling transsexuals under the transgender umbrella -- and that was someone who is transsexual themselves. I've only skimmed the 100+ comments that came in last night, and that unfortunately seems to have changed. Nonetheless, there are a lot of transgender people who aren't placing you under that umbrella. Do you see them as similarly on par with everyone else the same way you see yourself? Because the way you framed that seems to indicate that you see them as sub-par or inferior. If that's not the case, I think it would be really helpful to clarify. And if it is the case, well, that too would be helpful to be honest about.

Radical Bitch said:

If you define yourself as transgender (a third sex category) you have defined yourself out of the binary.....seems simple enough. If you tell me that with a female neurology, a corrected female norm body, hell, in my case even genetics that are more organ systems XX than XY....if you tell me I am not a woman or female, that I never will be, that I am some third gender/sex forever when I know differently I am not the bigot, the one defining others. Deconstruct your own gender to your heart's content....deconstruct mine and you are way the hell out of line.

I don’t think you understand—or perhaps you do not wish to acknowledge—what the meaning of the term transgender really is. Transgender is not a third sex category. At it’s core, the term is about coalition. The term transgender embodies a coalition of many people of many different gender identities, many different forms of gender expression, and many different forms of bodily expression. It includes people like myself who identify firmly on one side of the gender binary. It also includes people who identify as existing at both ends of the binary simultaneously, people who identify as existing somewhere between the two ends of the binary, or people who identify as existing nowhere on the binary at all. What we all have in common is that our existence violates society’s common understanding of what male and female, woman and man, or boy and girl mean. This violation of the norm leaves us in a position of less power than those who exist within society’s common understanding of gender and sex. That is, we who fall under the umbrella term transgender share common roots of oppression. Outside of that single common circumstance, our personas and ways of being are as varied as the wind.

Now, some might object that transsexuals who firmly conform to one side of the gender binary do not violate society’s understanding of sex and gender. I would posit that if you believe this, you are deeply in error.

The common understanding of sex and gender is that they are one and the same, they are established at birth, and they are immutable. If you are born with a penis, you are inescapably male and are destined to grow into a man. If you are raised properly, you will embrace your natural, born masculinity, and take your place in society as a man. If you are born with a vagina, you are female and are destined to grow into a woman. If you are raised properly, you will embrace your natural, born femininity. If you violate this understanding in any way, there is no established place for you in polite society. At best, you are an aberration who will be uncomfortably tolerated. At worst, you are an unspeakable freak who is to be hidden away, ostracized, and possibly sentenced to poverty or death.

Guess what? If you are a transsexual woman, it doesn’t matter how stunningly beautiful and womanly you are. If you are a transsexual man, it doesn’t matter how rugged, manly and handsome you are. Woman or man, it does not matter how many surgeries you have had. Your existence violates the common understanding of woman and man.

Inevitably, you must contend with the hard reality of other’s prejudice and fear.

Make yourself a nest of safety, if you will. Surround yourself with the most liberal, understanding friends in the world. Burn your child hood documents, jump through a maze of legal barriers, and erase your past. Live in complete stealth. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter. If the wrong person finds out about your past, if you let the veil of stealth slip at the wrong time, or if rumors about you spread to the wrong person, there’s a bullet quietly awaiting your untimely demise in the chamber of a gun somewhere. That’s the cold, bitter reality of our lives.

So, you have a choice:
a) You can recognize the common cause that binds our fates together and challenge the injustice and prejudice that surrounds us.
b) You can pretend that all of this simply doesn’t exist and stick your head in the sand.
c) You can band together with other likeminded, binary-conforming transsexuals and plead with polite society that you deserve special consideration over the rest of us freaks.

Make no mistake about it: you are considered to be a freak by much of society. The question is, will you hang out with the rest of us freaks and work together, or will you strive to establish a hierarchy among the freaks with yourself on top, in the hope of being granted special privileges?

Oh right, I forgot. You aren’t considered to be a freak. You are formerly transsexual and are completely a woman, and because of this, you are honored and respected by the good people of the world. You have been granted the full mantle of personhood by the people of the land because of you are born of superior stock. You are the worthy, the few, the proud. The rest of us are the unwashed masses of fetishistic gender dysfunction who refuse to bow our heads in the presence of our betters.

If you wake up from your dream, the rest of us will still be here dealing with reality. Perhaps then, you’ll deign to join us. Perhaps not…

Until then my liege, I pray that your crown does not tarnish.

you go ahead and be a tranny, I'll stay a woman thank you........

Case in point. You're abdicating authority by using hurtful, mean, dehumanizing language. You know that "tranny" is derogatory. What point are you trying to prove? All you're proving is that you can become angry and throw out insults first.

Radical Bitch said:

you go ahead and be a tranny, I'll stay a woman thank you........

*rolls eyes*

OK, so you think I disqualify myself as a woman because I have the grace to see the bigger picture, search out the connections that exist between people, and stand in solidarity with non-operative, non-binary, and non-transsexual folk. You think I fail as a woman because I choose to look beyond the scope of my own selfish interests and work with those who are different from me.

This reminds me of the older adults in my childhood who would call white people who supported civil rights "n***** lovers." This reminds me of how homophobes used call into question the sexual orientation of anyone who defended gay rights. This reminds me of how the masculinity of men who defend feminism is inevitably called into question.

Your tactics are time worn and familiar.


If I understand you correctly, you are saying there is a definitive medical test to determine true transsexuality and you and hundreds of others in the psychiatric field know of this test and it's validity?

Yes, there is an elegant simple test that separates classic, neurological intersexed transsexuals from the fetishists and autogynophiles. It is known among the top ranks of psychiatrists at the moment. Since it requires honest self reporting, it has not been published because transies are the largest consumers of this information and would defeat the test by lying.

Further, in a discussion on this very subject this morning I realized it would literally be possible to produce and market a scratch and sniff test that also would be definitive and could not be easily cheated. Anyone care to put up the venture capital? Oh, I forgot, the last thing any of you want is that test.

see, fetishist is that belittling and demeaning speak I'm talking about. You are self-identifying as a woman, and I think that's good. If someone self identifies as a transgender woman, that is good too. You dehumanize by using the term "fetishist." I'm sorry if you disagree, but language is power, and that is a dis-empowering term, and that's precisely what I'm talking about here. You're undoing ANY good you could do for your side by throwing out hurtful language like that.

Do you really want to dehumanize folk like that? Do you really think its fair you get to self-identify but don't allow others to do so?

RB, I'm confused by your response. Please define "classic, neurological intersexed transsexuals" I have never come across this before and I want to make certain I understand what you are saying.

it has not been published because transies are the largest consumers of this information and would defeat the test by lying.

So the study that you are using to justify your claims that your brand of transsexuality can "easily and accurately" be detected, verifying your particular distinction between what you call transsexuals and transgenders... is not peer reviewed and known only to a small number of individuals.

That's what we call an untested theory, not hard scientific fact. If that information if not let out for review, then it is effectively worthless. Until the test methodology reviewed and the results verified by other tests, your test is invalid. That's the way science works, yo.

Anyone care to put up the venture capital?
Without better evidence supporting the possibility of your study being accurate, beyond that of your mysterious unnamed and unspecified "top psychiatrists," I doubt that anyone would want to put forth such venture capital. It sounds more like quack psychology than real science at this point, at least from what you've shared of it so far.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 9:06 PM

Strange then that the questionaire to see if someone is a psychopath including the so-called powerpath varient HAS been published and peer-reviewed even though those people are very much the kind to lie to get advantage, to often fresearch to get advantage and some of the key questions involve their willingness to comit murder for advantage.

So when it involves identifying dangerous people capable of conscienceless murder the field still must publish and be peer reviewed and teach the tests at university and yet for transgender this is strangely too great a risk?


battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 9:31 PM

Actually... this is a really crucial question...

Is this test totally biological in nature?

Is it a blood test? Gene test? Hormone test? FMRI scan? Or the like?

Or is it a questionairre that relates to biology only by inferance?

Is it a hard-science piece of biology or neurobiology with clear biological criteria?

Or is it a psychological test that seperates people into catagories based on purely arbitrary criteria?

Because if its a purely biological test it would indeed support that there is a very specific biological test for 'classic transsexuals' that does not apply to the rest.. though may still not rule out biological causation for the rest or even a somewhat related causation.

And if its not then all youi've done is create a test that may be entirely self-referential. Create a set of criteria, any set of criteria, and then test for them and you find them or you don't. Whoopie.. as that cannot be proven as directly related to biology and proving nothing at all as the lines of the box are defined only by where you start drawing them.

And as Schizophrenia and past psychological causality notions of transsexuals so easilly show psychology is always trumped by biology. Psychology regularly fails because of its arbitrary delineations and self-referential notions.

So is this hard-science. Blood tests, fmri scans etc? Or self-referrential and therefore proving nothiong more than if one draws any specific line and put one set on one side and the other on the other you'll get people on either side of a line?


Seriously -- I will. I can touch about half a million in venture capital.

Please put for the the business plan with details -- including the names and other information.

If it has merit, they'll do it in a heartbeat.

And how hilarious.

In order for it to be an olfactory test, it has to be biochemical in nature, not neurological, and would almost certainly be based on the studies generally around sex differentiation done in northern Europe and Scandinavia.

Tests which consistently show merely a *general* pattern, not a specific and absolute predictability.

Flat out, you are lying through your teeth, Cathryn.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 12:10 AM

And once again tests for Autism have slowly revealed that often parents or other relatives of autistic children have some milder but above average autism symptoms. And theres a big difference between medium autosm and severe autism. We could draw an arbitrary line and develop a test for autism that would only count those with the worst cases but it would not make non existent the moderate cases just have them not show up on the tests.

So for this test to truly be fully meaningful wont a study be required for its calibration that gives a broad scale comparison of gender variant people?

Doesn't it require us to first do the same or even more sensitive tests on the rest of TG that were done for biological causation of TS?

Because a test can't by itself rule out degrees of a condition if it is meerely set to activate when a certain degree of the condition is present.

To truly answer that question a significant size study comparing a wide cross-section of S&GD people is needed.

Not exactly.

The test they know of is not in the psychiatric field.

It's a "smell test" -- and since among the various groups within them (I've counted about six so far) that test varies in specifics, it's wholly subjective.

One last thought and then I'm done.

Why is this gender theory identity nonsense the only discussion area where those who have gone all the way through the process the one's who are dismissed? The ones who never finish full transition or are stuck in the middle are the experts? What kind of sense does that make?

Susan Taylor's blog does contain a lot of homophobic and heteronormalative comments, she and I have had major disagreements about exactly that as I am bisexual and most of my women friends are also bisexual or lesbians. That does not change the accuracy of those observations she makes that do not fit that problem area.

I've written and have online an entire body of work that addresses these issues.

Phil, at the start I attempted a private conservation, you ignored that. Why not spend a few hours reading now?

Since your question makes no sense as written, clarification is needed.

1 - What is this "Gender theory identity" nonsense you ask about?

2 - What makes you think that *that* is the reason for being dismissed?

3 - What makes you think that surgery magically grants extra powers of expertise?

It's not difficult for one to discern who real>/I> women are.

Well, not for most of us.

For you, however, there certainly seems to be such.

From my admittedly distant vantage point, it seems that every different group draws different circles and lines defining who is or is not trans, who is or is not a woman or a man.

At a time that we are working to get an inclusive ENDA through Congress, this raging argument amongst the various components of our community is handing the Right fodder, as well as potentially emboldening anti-trans parts of the LGBT; "if they can't agree on any of this, then maybe we ought to let Congress drop the T."

Bad timing, people.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 11:01 PM

Bad timing or deliberate act?

Human beings tend to understand the world through a series of generalities as opposed to seeing the world as it is. Consequently, the universe has a funny way of defying whatever system of categorization humans try to impose upon the world and its inhabitants.

Language reflects this imperfect imposition of boundaries. So do our binary notions of sex and gender. We argue about where to draw the line when in reality there are an infinite number of lines. Perhaps we can drop our pencils for a while and simply work toward respecting each other for who we truly are? Is that too much to ask?

It is difficult to ask others to be respectful when in their ignorance and misguided bigotry, they refuse to be such.

Given my experiences with prejudiced folk, I tend to agree, dyssonance. Those who cling to their prejudice with religious fervor are beyond the reach of words or reasoning.

I wrote that with the intent of speaking to those who are on the verge of walking down the path of prejudice and for those who are embarking on the process of challenging their prejudice. Speaking as someone who has held a fair degree of prejudice in the past and has slowly worked through many faults of perception, I hold hope that there are others like me.

Ok, for those of you who think intersex is neurological. You either have to be on crack or shooting yourselves in the foot to come up with this warped out logic. Intersex is not neurological and it will never be neurological because their is no scientific proof and no scientific fact. It's basically theories that has never been proven and never made into reality.

I am still astounded by the fact that people insist transsexuals MUST go down a specific path and have surgery. While I do follow that path, I also support those who do not. The "true transsexual" faction insists that this medical condition has only one possible outcome. This would make transsexualism the least varied condition in medical history. Every other medical condition has various degrees of severity, yet, apparently transsexualism only has one degree. Also, apparently, transsexual women apparently are incapable of coming to terms with the disparity between their minds and their bodies, again ludicrous. The human brain is a wonderful organ, capable of adapting to nearly any set of circumstances, even a disparity between mind and body. To dismiss those who reach a point in their lives where they can live a peaceful life without surgery is to dismiss the wonder and power of the human brain and the ability of humans to adapt. Transsexualism, like any medical condition HAS variations in its severity, for some, it is an all or nothing proposition, they cannot adjust, they cannot accept their body, they must align their body fully and completely with their mind. For other, there is middle ground. For some, their minds never fully masculinized or feminized, their is a partial setting of gender identity which leaves them unable to fully identify with either gender, they live in the middle. They are transsexual, but their condition is a partial or incomplete one. To say that one group of transsexual woman is more genuine than all others would be like saying that a person with full blown metastasized 100% fatal breast cancer is a true cancer patient and that the person with a small treated malignant lump never really had cancer. Their experiences are just as relevent, their condition is just like any other medical condition in the world, it varies in it's severity. Transsexualism too, like every other medical condition in the world, varies in its severity. If you cannot accept that then you do not understand the basics of the human condition.

There is not a shred of evidence that transsexuality is not a condition that one either has or does not. You cannot be a little bit or part pregnant, you either have hiv or you do not, your appendix bursts or it doesn' are attempting medical word games to deliberately give an impression something with zero evidence to support is true.

Dishonest.....Trying to redefine a condition with specific parameters to colonize it is the problem here......there is no non op transsexual by choice, only by circumstances.

FYI, pregnancy is not a medical condition, but society has chosen to treat it in a medical fashion. Your statement that there is only a non-op by circumstances, interesting, so many "true transsexual" advocates insist that no set of circumstances would lead to a person being non-op, yet you claim it is possible by circumstance. You might want to get with the rest of the group on that one, sounds like y'all have a bit of a consistency issue.
Medically, HIV infection, and the extent to which a person is affected does vary. Some are overtaken with it quickly, others live for years with no sign or symptom of the virus. Appendix, some must be rushed into surgery soon after the onset of symptom, others have less severe symptoms and are successfully treated non-operatively with antibiotics.
You want to try again?
Why do you insist on questioning the experience of others because it differs from your experience. Their identity does not diminish in any way your existence. It does not threaten it, and yet you insist on attacking those who identify under the transgender umbrella. I, personally, based on my life experience, do not identify under the transgender umbrella. I am transsexual, and have know I was a woman from my earliest memories. But that does not mean that I go around belittling others for being non-op, a crossdresser, or gender queer. That does not take away from me being a woman.
If you want to talk evidence, where is the evidence that partial feminization or masculinization of the brain does not occur in utero resulting in incomplete development of a strickly feminine or masculine brain? Do you have scientific evidence of that? There is no 100% scientific evidence in regards to the specific origin of our condition. Some are inter-sex, and were assigned sex at birth based on which sex characteristic was retained and which was surgically altered, others were born with a female brain and male body or vice versa.
Back for a second to the intersex thing. Again, variation in the degree of a medical condition. There is are degrees of severity of AIS, some have partial AIS, and develop some male and some female sex characteristics, other have complete AIS and develop no male sex characteristics and their brains only respond to estrogen. Again, variation within a medical condition. They are all intersex, but the degree to which their body is affected varies.
I still fail to understand why you continue to spew hate and bigotry at those who identify as transgender. They are not telling you that you must also identify that way. Let them live their lives, quit questioning that which you do not understand. It does not lessen your femininity, its does not put your womanhood into question. Let them live their lives without suffering more unnecessary hate.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 8:43 PM

Except that most neurological variations DO come in degrees.. Aspergers.. Autism..

So Occams razor requires we assume one neurological variation would follow the pattern of others and with Autism and Aspergers that is SPECTRUM! The simplist hypethesis.. and then we TEST that hypothesis to see if it's correct! Until tested we merely have two untested hypotheses, that it's a spectrum of degrees of severity like other neurological variations like Autism or that it's somehow not like pregnancy which involves a totally different organ and so is not very applicable now is it.

WHERE is the result of the tests for this?

You say there's no evidence WHEN THE EVIDENCE HAS NOT YET BEEN TESTED FOR. To say evidence cannot exist when it has not been tested for is unscientific! It's like the priest refusing to look through Galileos telescope because he already knew what was there without ever looking!

And could someone clear something up... I've heard one of the subjects in one of the studies finding in favour of a biological causation of TS was a non-op by choice. Unless they had an absence of what was tested for that was not found in the others does that not refute your claims? Can someone provide the pertinent detail and sources for that please?

I'm still astounded that people don't get this simple issue. Transsexuality is a birth defect, nothing more. You either have it or you don't, and no amount of rationalization is going to change that. People arguing about degrees of severity producing crossdressing are way off base, as anyone who has suffered from this condition will attest.

It has nothing to do with "gender" or doing "woman" or "man" stuff, or playing social roles. People who don't understand this and argue fervently for crossdressing as "transsexual" obviously weren't born with the condition and it is their own words expose their ignorance, not the "evil" people out here who were born with it who are now speaking out.

By the way, why is it that men here on Bilerico feel the need to have an opinion about what has become essentially a woman's issue? That's fairly rude and outright pushy.

I appreciate this illumination, but I'm going to play devil's advocate here for the sake of further clarity. Does that mean there are no transsexual FtM? Are the only transsexual people you accept are MtF? I just thought I'd ask for clarification. If it goes either way then it is essentially NOT a women's issue. Perhaps a PERSONAL issue, but its not really relegated only to the sphere of womanhood. It effects both genders equally and therefore may allow men to weigh in?

Are sex and gender completely separate? Absolutely not they are two twin issues. Most folk who don't conform in stereotypical sexual orientation roles also don't conform fully to society's liking in terms of gender. They therefore have a stake in how this debate goes--are the gender struggles they go through meaningless? Are they not allowed to weigh in? I've been jumped twice--neither time was 'straight on gay' crime, but both times were bias crimes. The second time I was jumped was a smaller affair, a gay man struggling with his own sexuality lashed out on another gay man. I got away from that one with nary more than a fat lip. My friend fared a little less well, but that's another story.

The FIRST time I got jumped though, it was 5 straight guys. They didn't jump me because I was gay--they didn't even know I was gay (thank God, it may have been worse) they jumped me for several reasons, but one of those was I do not, apparently, conform to gender stereotypes enough for their liking. How do I know. Among other things, they called me girly, they called me pussy and they told me 'be a man' and asked me why I didn't 'fight back.' They saw me as an easy target because I didn't fit the description of what they saw as a real man. That's clear as day.

Do I have a stake in this discussion? You better believe it. Defense of these grand gender binaries almost killed me. What made me so upset when I read the TGnonsense site is that I read language in referring to transgender people on that site that MATCHED VERBATIM some of the things my assailants shouted at me as they beat me, gave me a concussion, and kicked my head so hard and so much that they left PERFECT SHOE PRINTS in my forehead. I'm not joking. The language is eerily similar, and the sentiment the same. The genders are merely switched.

I don't consider myself transgender or genderqueer at all, but my gender expression has indeed brought me some interesting experiences, so I'm going to go ahead and say that I sure do have a stake in this discussion. Yes indeed.

That is not to say I feel like I ought to be going around diagnosing folk and telling people what umbrella they fall under. If you don't want to identify as transgender, but as simply a woman, then I support that. But when someone--in the same breath--completely writes off the transgender community and belittles their members, I have to say, "Sorry, I'm going to go ahead and disagree now." Not saying you did, but saying that's why I opened my big mouth in the first place. You SHOULD have the ability to self identify. So should everyone else.

Also, I don't think anyone is arguing that anyone who is not transsexual IS transsexual. A crossdresser not transsexual. I think everyone is in agreement here that transsexual is a medical term. I haven't seen anyone deny it. There is a lot to pour through here on the list, and I'll admit I was not memorizing every word, but scanning through now, I'm not finding an instance of someone mislabeling a crossdresser transsexual, but please correct me if I'm wrong, as I could be. I'm limited on time and can't reread the whole thread.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 27, 2009 11:08 PM

The language is eerily similar, and the sentiment the same.

Phil, I'm really sorry to hear that you've been physically attacked twice. That's terrible. But, sadly, I'm not surprised that the language the assailants used is pretty much the same that these hateful transexual women use. The unresolved issues and emotions that fuel their lashing out here at Bilerico (and elsehwere) are probably pretty darn similar to those that motivated the men who attacked you.

And thank you for bringing up the FtM point. These people tend to ignore us. I guess we really throw a monkey wrench into their dogmatically constructed arguments, given that most of us possess the genitals and internal plumbing they so desire, don't identify as women, and don't intend to have lower surgery.

The ol' FtM red herring brought up once again. I don't speak for the men, they can do that themselves. And this is an argument that specifically target women, and is therefore misogynistic by its nature. I'll say it again: Why do men here think they need to have opinions about women's issues?

What is the relationship? It sucks that you got attacked, and I'm sorry that we live in a society where that happens. What does that have to do with a birth defect? Being gay is not a birth defect, so where is the connection? If gay men want to weigh in on these issues as outsiders they should say so, and not attempt to speak to our issues with any kind of authority. If they didn't know that's what they are doing, I'm informing you now that is what's going on.

My life is a bit more than how I "self identify" and it has zero to do with the GLBT or any notion of that sort. Many people have tried to tie this birth defect to the gay cause, and some are even trying to do it to those who are labeled "intersex" by the medical industry. It's wrong. And so is any attempt by the GLBT to own other people's issues.

It is a lie to say that the transsexual birth defect is an "identity". It is a lie to say that my birth condition gives anyone, gay or not, the right to doubt who I am or put an asterisk after my sex. I don't do that to transgender men and women (however they identify themeselves), and the open bigotry displayed in places like these towards people like me by both gay men and transgender-identified people is astounding.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 11:29 PM

Are you arguing that FtM has a different cause than MtF? As otherwise scientifically their experiences remain valid from a scientific standpoint in understanding the phenomena.

And if they experience a related but yet distinct phenonema what is the evidence for this and does that validate the possibility of more than one MtF biological causation with varied experience?

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 8:54 PM

Birth defect? What about the kin-selection argument that it could in fact be selected for in evolution to give advantage to siblings?

Doesn't the gene discovery of a gene more common in TS than average support that?

Don't the sex neurology brain variations found in gays and lesbians, particularly the FMRI scans, suggest that in fact many gays and lesbians are in fact neurologically intersex merely in different parts of the brain to TS?

Doesn't the fact these brain variations are often specific to particular brain regions including behaviour and emotional processing areas bring behaviour into the equation?

All based on studies and links from Zoe's blog.
Doesn't the very science usued to claim TS as biologically caused actually support connections between these phenomena still in the infancy of their biological exploration?

Isn't that what the still incomplete science says?

Sometimes when I read these debates and note the adversaries taking part in them, I see the same old names and the same old arguments are trotted out. The same insults fly and half truths presented and then subsequently twisted by opponents or misunderstood and then they get thrown back into the mele as an insult. The result is that no one leaves the argument (I can't say debate because much of the particpants are not adult enough)with any greater knowledge or understanding than that which they entered the argument. No one learns from arguments like this.
Dyss,Arnold Lowman used the term "transgenderist" to describe himself. He also used the term "transgender" to describe others who were like him. I know how and what Arnold Lowman thought, what he was like and what his opinion on transsexual was. Why because I listened to the idiot spout his crossdressing theories for an hour until feeling sick I left the lecture. You twist the truth constantly with an air of superiority you lack the intellect to back up.
Phil the problems that surround the War" that rages between "Classic Transsexuals" and transgender is one of "identity theft" it's not wether we fail to recognise or accept transgenders existance or right to exist at all it's about transgender appropriation of "transsexual" over the past 25 years to such an extent that most of the general public see transgenders in the public view behaving like clowns and they call themselves "transsexual" and they are not.
Transsexual is an absolute. In other words there is a overpowering abhorrence of the genitalia and cross sex markers in their physical. It is this fact that would prevent a "Classic Transsexual" entering naked female space. "Classic Transsexuals" cannot bear to see themselves naked, let alone be seen by anyone else. The abhorrence of gentitalia is that intense. So for anyone to say that there are degrees they simply do not understand the depth of that feeling and certainly have no experience of it. It is that motivational source that defines transsexual. If it is absent there is not transsexual but transgender.
Yet transgenderists lay claims to degrees of transsexuality and they repeat that lie in order to perpetuate the illusion of legitimacy to medical professionals so medical assitance is provided to enable transgender to obtain a more convincing image for themselves.
Transgenderists may very well post surgery live quite contentedly in good and decent lives and personally I would applaud that. Still that will not make them transsexual.
One closing point; there is no such animal as "GRS or gender reassignment surgery. Gender is about the sex of objects not people. The correct term should be "Sex Reassignment Surgery" Although personally, since I view trannsexuality as a birth condition, I prefer to refer to the surgery as "corrective."
But that's personal.

Classic Transsexuals" cannot bear to see themselves naked, let alone be seen by anyone else. The abhorrence of gentitalia is that intense.

Have you done or found a study that confirms this assertion? Without that study, you're making a claim based purely on anecdotal evidence, one that is contradicted by other anecdotal evidence in those that declare themselves to be transsexuals.

I myself find myself uncomfortable with my genitalia, but I don't really hate it. In fact, I have been working on increasing my comfort with nudity over the past few years since I began transition. 4 years into transition, I am more comfortable being naked now than I ever was before. I can even have sex with people without major discomfort now. Yet I'm still looking forward to fixing the discomfort that still exists.

Your unsubstantiated claim here directly denies my experience of being a "transsexual" woman. After declaring people like myself to be "not transsexual, but transgender," you go on to say that we are perpetuating an illusion of legitimacy for our condition.

I pray ask you what is illegitimate about my experience of being transgender. What could possibly motivate me to take actions that would result in incredible hardship and pain for me, yet still be "illegitimate" experiences?

It is for the transgender to prove their (positive) assertions. Why is the onus on the skeptics?

The onus is *always* on the skeptics.

Which a skeptic knows from the get go.

Then again, a skeptic is willing to look at both sides, and tends to ask more questions than make assertions.

Kinda the nature of skepticism.

Cynics, on the other hand, tend to ask fewer questions, make more assertions, and dismiss things as being, well, not really all that real or important.

Are you serious? I find it hard to believe someone in the social sciences wouldn't know the scientific method. The burden of proof is ALWAYS on the person putting for the hypothesis.

Not when there is an extant hypothesis already.

In this case, it is on your side the onus falls -- and you forget that the nature of the scientific method is to be a skeptic of one's own hypothesis.

You do not do something to prove it -- you do something to see what the results show and draw your conclusions from that.

Going into it with a predetermined objective is not part of the methodology.

So, yes -- and *especially* as someone versed in the social sciences.

I am serious.

That makes absolutely no sense.

Then think about it.
Go and learn a few things.

When I see something that doesn't make sense, that's usually what I do.

Or, as I've done here, ask questions.

SO that you can figure out why it doesn't make sense.

It's kinda the scientific method, ya see...

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 12:39 AM

REAL Scientific Method makes absolutely no sense to you?

Well theres a problem identified then.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 12:23 AM


Scientiffic method is about DISproving hypotheses.

And people merely need to propose testable hypotheses. It took years for the tests of much of Einsteins ideas to be practically possible.

Until an hypothesis is tested IT IS NEITHER PROVED NOR DISPROVED.

And claims that something is so when it has not been tested afre unscientific nonsense.

Example: The hypothesis that the cause of crossdressing is not the same but lesseer or partial biological causation of TS is simply tested.

Simply do all the same tests on CDs as have found evidence of biological causation in TSs (and G and L too!) in a comparative study with a large totally Cis straight control.

When its done the hypothesis will have been tested. Until it has then it has neither been proved or disproved. And neither has the counter hypothesis that they are relatedly caused which is tested the same way.

See living with uncertainty, things not proven nor disproven until they are properly tested, and with small tests not being truly conclusive and more complex understandings overturning what was thought proved before is part of basic scientiffic literacy.

So till the comparative representtive bio tests are done on the whole of S&GD variations a lot of people are talking out of their hats claiming proven facts when they only have untested assumpions, specualation and unsciemtific beliefs.

With no more credibility that creation-science like Michael 'curse-you-for-being-reducible-flagellum' Behe.

And indeed, you are the one putting forth the hypothesis that you can unequivocally state that all transsexual women feel blah, where blah, in this case, is an absolute loathing for their pre-transition genitalia.

So would you like to back up your assertion?

Excuse me? We need to prove a definition?

Transsexuality is a birth condition. One that is defined by the absolute need to put the mind and body into congruence to the maximum possible (which, since so many seem to miss the point, covers the piss poor surgeries for FtMs, those who legitimately cannot have surgery for medical reasons etc.)

You don't "prove" a definition, it is. You don't get to change it to suit yourself when you do not fit it...but you did! How do I know this? Because prior to the thousands of she-male porn sites and crossdresser vanity pages, back in the early days of the internut, my own definition was always among the top five of any given search engine... and it is what it is....need, congruence, completion.....maximum correction possible. No need for congruence, no transsexuality. It ain't rocket science, but what you are doing is appropriation and the only possible reason you'd do so is for some perceived medical legitimacy.

You talked about taking your penis into a shower (and leave the bathrooms out of this, none of us were talking simple bathrooms and never were.) In doing so you joined the ranks of those who say they are transsexuals and yet talk endlessly about their penises. W#hy do we hear about penises from your side all the time? Women don't have penises unless they were unfortunate enough to be born with one, In those cases, they will move heaven and earth to be rid of them. If decent phalloplasty existed the actual FtMs would do the same and we'd see who are the sheep and who are the goats clearly there as well. I have a pretty good idea already who is who.

You branded us with a label coined by one of our worst enemies ever, then you claimed our birth condition, then you posited that since surgery wasn't important to you, it must not be for anyone with transsexuality. That is not just offensive, it already has put SRS, a lifesaving treatment for actual sufferers of transsexuality, at risk. That's reality. You deny the scientific studies that should have already been enough to make insurance companies pay up...but you give them cover not to.

And you wonder why we oppose you? Seriously, what planet are you people from anyway?

Since when is the definition of transsexualsim (currently only found explicitly in the ICD) defined by the *absolute* need to put mind and body into congurence?

Since when has one not needed to prove a definition? That's been standard for centuries.

Given "back in the days" the industry was still confined to escports services and physical publications, you might want to keep in mind that the internet was the purview of the relatively privilged few.

Which, by any reality check, would kinda show your particular foolishness here for what it is.

Why is it that you continue to deny the medical establishment's position, yet state that it's a medical condition when that statment is dependent on the same medical establishment?

Had it ever occurred to you that the talk about the penis is due to discomfort with such?

Or are you so far removed from that you have forgotten your own anxieties there (and, please, don't make me dig *again* for that)?

What gives you the authority to do what you did in this response? THat is, from whence did you gain gain the authority to decide for Paradox what paradox is or is not?

You said "claimed our brith condition" -- that means, "you do not have the right to have done so" subtextually.

IOW, It's required in order to have made the statement.

ON what basis -- what evidence -- do you make the assertion that this person endagers SRS?

What makes you think that the reason Insurance companies don't cover surgery is that they don't accept the studies? I ask this because per an actual underwriter, their primary reason is a lack of reliable data, and then, secndarily, that all the major isurance companies save one specifically have riders that must be requested by employers to cover such, in keeping with the AMA recommendation.

What makes you think some of us wonder?

What evidence causes you to question that we would come from any ther planet but this one (which, I should note, is a dehumanizng tactic, and explicitly so, since it's saying "you must be from another planet".)

Sorry so many questions.

Would you please answer them?

battybattybats battybattybats | September 27, 2009 11:44 PM

Cause science works by DISproving disprovable Hyptheses.

If you cant then its not real science. Thats the key differnce between REAL science and Creation-science like the nonsense of Michael Behe.

The onus of real science is forming an idea and trying to find ways it can be tested and if you can test it but cant disprove it because it passes the tests then you consider it true untill it does get disproved.

Thats the basis of all REAL science.

You have made the assertion that all transsexuals abhor their genitalia. I am asking you to prove that assertion, as there is no evidence that I have seen either for or against that statement, except that my own personal experience with transsexuals seems to indicate that they don't consistently hate their genitalia and actually have quite a diverse set of reactions to such.

Therefore, the onus is on you to prove your assertion. I have not made any assertion in this case, merely asked you to back up your claims.

oh wow, a whole hour.

Congratulations -- you'v done what society in general sees as an error of false authority. Worse, you've not noted the time when you did this, which raises interesting TOS questions about the use of the name.

Think I don't have the intellect to back up my assertions, try me :)

That you've gone around and actively violated the ethics clause of licensure isn't a big deal to me -- but may to others.

It is *your* opinion -- a minority one, held in direct opposition to reality -- that transsexualism is an absolute of the sort and in the manner you describe it.

You may want it to be different, as Sophia recently suggested and Aria wants, but that does not change how it is, now, at this time, and how it is likely to stay for at least 15 years.

Fear is your element, afforded by ignorance, and I am neither in this arena.

Stop lying, and stop trying to dictate to others their identity.

I'm disappointed by the caliber of the conversation taking place here. Instead of making claims that are backed by evidence and experience, these "HBS" style trans folks are making claims that are wild and spurious and refusing to back them up with any degree of data or information.

Instead of being able to have a conversation about the quality of a study, we are left with mysterious "top psychiatrists" with "secret tests" that can't be revealed to the general public for fear of the "transgender menace" finding out about them. We are told that anyone that does not match a specific definition of transsexuality are pretenders to the throne and do not deserve to call themselves men or women, despite those definitions having no basis in any gender theory, philosophical or scientific.

This whole conversation is basically just one side using scientific sounding language to put forth pseudoscience and psychological quackery while the other side keeps asking for something to back up those claims.

It leads me to believe that this conversation is not nearly as honest as those participating may want folks to believe. This isn't a discussion about the nature of who a real woman is or isn't. This is a bullying session where people are trying to shout about who is or isn't a "real" individual.

It seems that we're dealing with the "no true scotsman" fallacy in big bold colors from people whose only aim is to deny a certain group of people their self-identification in order to more legitimately claim their own.

Perfectly put.

I have to admit going into this I was biased. I have a lot of transgender and genderqueer friend who I love dearly and whose true trials I've witnessed personally.

However, I recognized that bias and I wanted to be fair and open this up to free discourse.

The "transgender menace" name-calling quickly came about and I am severely disappointed that if these folks really do feel they are being wronged, that they could not refrain from being the first to get nasty.

I've got to tell ya, I feel like I have a better understanding of this dynamic now, and I want to thank everyone for at least being real about their feelings and experience. I wish the discussion hadn't disintegrated like it had, but I am proud of those folk who stayed above the fray.

I think its fine for someone to self-identify themselves right out from the transgender identity umbrella if they so desire. If they want nothing to do with the trans rainbow, frankly everyone is better off. They don't, on the other hand, earn the right to dictate who is what. That is so blatantly unfair right on the surface of things, its ridiculous to think they don't see how obvious that is.

Hate is hate and bigotry is bigotry. I'm not specifically calling anyone out here, so don't start saying "Phil called women bigots!" or whatnot... but I'm saying, I know bigotry when I see it, and its reared its ugly head right here, as well as on the ENDA board.

I'm proud to be in this family. I'm proud to be a part of this diverse spectrum of people. I'm more than proud. I'm ecstatic. Being a part of this tribe is a BLESSING from God. Its wonderful.

I've had the opportunity of meeting some incredible and amazing super-humans in my life, and many were transgender people. We had some incredible transgender, transsexual, operative, non-operative and genderqueer people speak on this thread, and give words of love, encouragement and inclusion.

Plain and simple, the language of exclusion is the language of hate. The language of dehumanizing or belittling is the language of hate. There's no escaping that. I'm sorry. But there isn't.

If you dehumanize someone you are a bigot. That's what bigots do.

Bigots raise their own status by placing others below them. To me, we're all on equal footing. The only thing that puts us below one another, is when our tactics and language make us dig into the mud in an attempt to sling it. Its sad. The person who slings the mud is the one left dirtiest. You need to go wash, my dirtflinging friends.

After this thread, I am such a fan of Brynn, Paradox, Tobi, Timberwraith, Dyssonance, Zoe, Battybats, Amy Hunter, and especially Bose, who really spoke for me here it seemed! What a wide spectrum. Some transgender folk, some nontransgender folk some transsexual folk, some women of operative past, some men of operative past, some allies. You are class acts!

I know this argument won't end here, and I'm not shutting down the thread. I'm just pointing out there were some people I was very impressed with, and some I wish would look inside themselves and ask themselves where this rage is really coming from... what is the basis.

That's all I really can say, I guess, other than I'm so proud to call you brothers and sisters!

I'm not likely someone to include in that list of people to admire, Phil.

I'm a deeply flawed woman with plenty of my own privileges and prejudices and even bigotries, and worse, I have a temper.

And I have a grudge against many of the women posting here in weak and inconsequential defense of their positions, which colors my writing in a way I'd prefer it not, but haven't the desire to make it happen.

Those are all *great* people to be a fan of, though -- I've learned a great deal from them myself, and call at least one a friend (though even she wisely has issues with me, lol).

I'm just generally annoying.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 12:02 AM

Phil, I can't really speak for them, but a cis-male friend of mine once said something that changed my perspective forever. He said, and I paraphrase, "Even if tomorrow you could go out, have surgery, and end up with the perfect penis--a penis, say, just like mine," and he smiled, "you'd still not be happy. Because we're never happy with what we have. It's the human condition."

I thought about it and realized--whether or not this is exactly what he meant--that what a penis represented to me was all those lost childhood and young adult years, when no one saw me for who I really was. All those years when I couldn't dress in boy's clothing, couldn't play on the boys' teams, couldn't ask out a girl to the dance, couldn't saunter across the quad, walking the way I felt comfortable, couldn't piss standing up, couldn't penetrate a partner with my genitals, couldn't look into the mirror and see myself reflected as I felt inside.

Once I realized this is what I yearned for, I also realized that the perfect penis wouldn't give me back all those years. Nothing would. I've actually been a lot happier since I realized this, because at the same time, I recognized that I actually had gained a lot of incredibly valuable experience in those so-called "lost" years. I'd been pregnant. Given birth, nursed, and raised to adulthood the most amazing daughter in the world. Went through puberty for the second time in my 40's. Partied and shared insider insights with an extraordinary FtM community. Shit, I've experienced life as a straight woman, a dyke, and bisexual, queer-identified man. How many people can say that?!

Bottom line, I wouldn't trade my experience just to get a dick. But it's taken many years and a lot of painful work to gain this realization. Work that I was initially inclined to avoid.

IMO, the people lashing out on this thread--and you'll notice, more have arrived--are stuck in the stage of yearning for the lost years. Add to that the fact that living as a woman in a patriarchy might not be all they were hoping for. Even if they pass well, and much more so if they don't.

I had a moment early this year (like, i the first couple weeks of it), not to unlike the one you had in that question.

For me, it centered on the nature of the "pressure" on one to get the surgery, which is often related to getting the paperwork done.

I had my paperwork done. All of it. And it allowed me to be able to be free of the pressure of surgery for any other reason than my simply needing it for me -- to be free of the sense of revulsion that I feel when I encounter a single tiny part of my body, which I otherwise am happy to have.

Epiphany is the term for such moments.

"I've had the opportunity of meeting some incredible and amazing super-humans in my life, and many were transgender people. We had some incredible transgender, transsexual, operative, non-operative and genderqueer people speak on this thread, and give words of love, encouragement and inclusion"

...if you call those who are *women*
women,and those who are *men* men, and those who identify as neither *people*
all in respect, you can't go wrong.
if people don't want to be considered "Transgender",
that is up to them. those that feel differantly, should also be respected.

i still feel that identity politics needs to be about lobbying, or politics, and that we all should be seen as people, humans, not as words.(like black or white or american or iraqi or palistinian or isreali or gay or cis or irish or english...etc)
fighting words, when used by enemies.
separating, possibly de-humanizing words.
("homo'sex-shul" is always great to hear...not)

but for conversation,
we will need words occasionally!lol
but if we TRY to see each other as human beings first,maybe we can learn to live together.
those that CAN'T,
this will always be true and can't be solved here.
but discussion will let the light of day onto all prejudice.

"A prejudice is a preconceived belief, opinion or judgment especially toward a group of people characterized by their race, social class, gender, ethnicity, ..."


Yes I know bigotry when I see it too, Phil.

What? Are you saying it's bigotry to ask you to back up your assertions with proof beyond super-secret psychiatrist societies?

by the way, thanks for this posting, Phil,
i'm ftm, and i for one appreciate being included in the GLB community.
after the first enda breakdown back there, i really thought that would NEVER happen....
the discussion on this issue is very welcomed by some in the "T" (whatever) community.

a month ago, a trans woman named Paulina Ibarra was stabbed to death in her apartment in Hollywood.
(from questioning transphobia website)

'HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Thursday, police named a person of interest in the case
of the murder of a transgendered person in Hollywood'

"Note the use of the word “person” – not woman. Note how it functions. Note how it actually means “not a person"
-helen boyd

she has been "degendered" into a "transperson"
not a woman.this is also why words matter....

(and, ultimatly, if you can dehumanize, you can kill...)

Phil, I'm glad you haven't closed this thread and I also hope you have not closed your mind either.

The rage you talk of comes from 25 years of haveing my personal experience and my professional experience rejected with little more than a string of assertions and psuedo science.
As a classic transsexual I do not and never have denied the right of transgender to define themselves however they like. I have seen and counselled many hundreds of transgender.

You ask where I base my own belief in transsexuality as an absolute it is a fair question. It comes from my experience couselling from discussions with colleagues and initially from Harry Benjamin's book. It also comes from talking with a great many other classic transsexual women and men as it happens, people who do not visit these places who do not wish to involve themselves in these issues but nonetheless are distressed that the reality of their own very real condition is dominated and colonised by those who do not meet diagnostic criteria.

For the record let me state for the umpteenth time. I do not subscribe to HBS. It was a good concept but has been misused and mismanaged.
I do not hate anyone.
I do not wish to deny TG
I do however reject totally that transsexual has any graduations in it's definition.

Phil do you not recognise the irony in a man telling a woman wether they are a valid woman or not. We are constantly told of how our surgery is nothing more than an inverted penis, that because we don't menstruate we are not women. that the man in shower with a penis is woman. Have you no concept of how mysogynistic that is.

No we are not being nasty we are just standing up for ourselves and women who stand up for themselves throughout the ages have been called for worse names than nasty. What you all are doing to us here and elsewhere is mysogyny. All we ask all I ask is that as women we get to define what we are and who we include. Surely that is not too much too ask?

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 12:46 AM

Defining who you are is your human right which i repeatedly defend.
Defining who others are is not your right. Everyone gets the dame right to define who they themselves are. Thats how human rights work.

To be consistent you dont get to define who others are and yet complain about others defining who you are.

I do not and never have denied the right of transgender to define themselves however they like.

Unless, of course, they define themselves as their "target gender," in which case you get really pissed off at them for "lying" to people and "misrepresenting transsexuality."

. What you all are doing to us here and elsewhere is mysogyny

It's misogyny to ask you to stop telling us transgender women that we're not women? It's misogyny to ask you to stop denying us our right to access basic facilities like locker rooms and bathrooms based on the gender we identify with? It's misogyny to ask you to stop misrepresenting us as fetishists? It's misogyny to ask you to accept that some of us transgender women are also identifiable as transsexuals?

This is not misogyny. This is a minority group demanding the right to its identification, which you are trying to deny us in telling us that we are not who we say we are.

You reject that it has gradiations, and yet, for 85 years it's been recognized as such.

On what basis do you reject this? What foundational evidence?

('k verbal police are here move along nothing to see!)
but seriously brynn:

"... hateful transexual women use."

hateful, maybe. WOMEN, as they requested,please!

"And thank you for bringing up the FtM point. These people tend to ignore us. I guess we really throw a monkey wrench into their dogmatically constructed arguments, given that most of us possess the genitals and internal plumbing they so desire, don't identify as women, and don't intend to have lower surgery. "

well, no, that's not always true, alot of ftm's have and want surgery, want to be called men, not tg. or transmen.lets keep up our part of the bargain, people!
no othering, no speaking for all!
(with all due respect, brynn!)

ps actually i'm thought vice squad, not word police.don't blow my cover

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 12:38 AM

Javier, no disrespect meant. You notice I said, "most of us," not "all of us." In my experience, regarding lower surgery, "most" is true. As surgery improves, and if insurance ever covers the procedure in a majority of jurisdictions, that may change.

Doesn’t anyone here see the irony in the usage of the word “identify?” to describe one’s sex? Sex is not mutable… we cannot ”dentify” our “choice of sex any more than we can “identify our choice of “wings. We are what we are and I for one was born transsexual. A condition which was corrected!. I did not “idenitfy as the female I am, anymore than I “identified” as the arm I broke when I seven. I had a medical issue in both cases and in both cases they were corrected and once healed I moved on.

I do not wish anyone who is transgendered ill. It is not an easy row to hoe, in fact I would say it is a harder one than mine as mine had an end point where as that of a TG does not. That said they are two different conditions… they are NOT part of some fluid viewpoint as indicated with this word “identify”

There in lies the crux of the matter and the reason for SO MUCH anger by women who have dealt with their medical past being lumped in as being one and the same as someone for whom this is an identify issue and not the very core of their being.


Remember that by sex being immutable, any person who has ever been assigned male at birth and now lives as a female is still male.

Until you factor in gender, when they become a woman.

Gender is mutable, sex isn't.

That's nonsense. You think "gender" gives you a pass for your feelings about immutable sex? I see the problem here.

Interesting leap to conclusion. Wrong, but interesting.

Care to substantiate it?

Would there really be any point to discussing anything with you?

Always a point to it, Aria.

The key is to have a discussion -- which isn't always easy.

You like to posit me as immovable -- which is incorrect. I'm quite moveable -- but you'll have to present something more than impassioned opinion and fear based information to do so.

I have absolutely no problem with being proven wrong -- it's how I learn.

However, as I keep pointing out elsewhere, you cannot prove someone's identity is wrong. You cannot simply say something is wrong when there are decades of research establishing such.

You can choose to ignore all of that, of course -- and I'm not even beyond doing that -- but then you have to start back at the basic levels.

I've said before that of all of the group of people in the circle with which you are involved, you are the sharpest and likely the best of them.

I meant it. Not because I've come to know you as a person, but because you are, nominally, more willing to sit down and think about this stuff than they are -- to branch out and explore and learn and give consideration.

Had I the ability to do so, I would give you a full four years of time to delve into the concepts and ideas here, because you are incredibly sharp, and you probably could very easily come up with an effective set of arguments.

I am not *easily* swayed, Aria. Opinions I have plenty of already, so you have to appeal to me on the basis of what can be established, and you have to go outside of the areas in which you are comfortable.

You have to look at the sex workers and the latina community and the AA community and more -- you have to look at levels and issues of poverty and wealth -- and if you make more than 20,000 a year, you are not in the range I'm talking about.

In short, yes, thee's a point to doing it -- but are you capable of it, and do you have a broad enough background to do so?

I think you do. But what I think about your abilities isn't important.

It's what you think about them.

I did not “idenitfy as the female I am, anymore than I “identified” as the arm I broke when I seven.

I'd like to ask. If you don't "identify" as the woman you are, then how were you able to determine and identify that you might possibly have this "medical issue" of transsexuality or whatever? What lead you down the path of recognizing that you had a genuine issue and weren't just suffering from some sort of mental delusion or illness? What lead to you seeking treatment?

For many trans* people, we start out by trying out different identities until we reach the point where we recognize that we identify as the gender that we actually are. We recognize that our internal gender identification does not math our body, and we take steps to change that. I'm curious to hear how the TS/HBS/classic transsexual experience works through this period of self-discovery.

I swear that the TS/HBS/Classic Collectors Edition Transsexual vs TG/TV/AG/GenderQueer/whatever war promises to be the new version of the 100 years war.

Before this becomes fodder for the Right, who would have a field day with some of the commentary to use as fear mongering disinfo for commercials against ENDA, what exactly is it that would get the two sides to disengage?

What are the priorities of each side, their demands, desires, goals and if a group of us kidnapped a roomful of you, gave you all some really great hash, could you reach an accomodation to end this?

Susan Taylor "asked" the same question, Maura.


IT is based in an issue of inclusive versus exclusive models, and that's not something that will ever be readily solved or accommodated.

IT's akin to asking cisLGB folks and their bigoted opponents when their fight will end.

Things that would help would be to recognize that identity politics, when applied within a small community, serve to fracture it. They only work on the broadest of scales, and at that scale, these differences are invisible.

The difference is that I truly want an answer Dys.

What concession, compromise, consideration could be made by one or both sides to end this?

There really isn't one, Maura -- at least not that I can see.

They say they will stop when they stp getting included. SO, when someone says, explcitly, they don't speak for them, merely other transsexuals, they don't act in good faith, they redouble thier efforts.

Cathryn's probably the exception to the rule there, but for the rest of them (and, in particular, this rather virulent portion of that group) there is no good faith.

And without at the very least that, their won't be an accord.

Here's a couple points:

"Classic transsexuals see sex and gender as synonymous terms, though they fully acknowledge that the transgender, by definition, have different sex/gender definitions germane to their construct. Classic transsexuals absolutely believe that GRS is imperative; it is the single trait that differentiate classic transsexuality from transvestism. Classic transsexuals certainly recognize there are those who have completely transitioned, including having GRS, later in life; those who have done so have the same narrative as those who completed transition at a younger age. Transitioning to classic transsexuals is absolutely not complete until GRS is performed."

Under this rule, anyone who's narrative does not match the narrative (the life history) of this specific poster is, in their view, not a transsexual.

They do not have allowances for different narratives -- narratives which are shaped by the changes in times and culture.

In their narratives, coming to terms with this after trying to be gay or lesbian makes one *not* a transsexual, regardless of the diagnosis applied.

Everyone of those posting here thus far have signed onto this particular idea of narrative based exclusion.

By using a narrative based methodology, they can do things like the other narrative bases hypothesis that remains unproven: autgynephilia.

It's intellectually dishonest, but emotionally satisfying.

And it allows them to act in bad faith.

In short, they want to "own" the term transsexual. They even talk about changing things to make it so only people of a particular narrative are identified as such (especially in the larger community of this type of transgender person).

That's bad faith, and not something probable anytime soon.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 12:31 AM

Well I'm after universal human rights, including the right of self-identification.

That includes the right of those TSs who say they aren't transgender to identify as not transgender.. and the ones who are fine with the umbrella being able to stay under it.

In other words a consistent principle. Based on a recognised human right.

I think we've been fairly straightforward from our side. We want people who were not born with this issue to stop speaking for us, and acknowledge that they don't have it. What do you think it will take for that to happen?

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 1:24 AM

How about for a start you stop talking for those who DO identify as TG who ARE TS?

A little more consistency and a little less hypocritical double standard.

Allow to others the equal right you claim for yourself. Or if you deny them that right then do not try to excercise it yourself. Easy. Simple. Consistent.

I have that condition. I am a transsexual. Yet people on your side of this argument tell me that I'm not allowed to speak as a transsexual since I also identify as a transgender woman.

THAT is part of what is at issue here. Your definition of "transsexual" is so narrow, that only a sliver of individuals that agree with your POV will fit into it. And further more, based on the definitions I've seen, your side's definition of a woman would exclude some cis women, which is absolutely absurd.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 4:33 PM

Finally, I think I understand.

Because I, and you, Paradox, and others like us call ourselves transsexuals, do not fit their narrow definition, AND are comfortable with the "transgender" label, they believe we taint them by association.

One major problem to their proposed solution of denying us the label, "transsexual" is that there exists a generally accepted definition in the larger society for the term. And by that definition, we ARE transsexuals--and so are they.

If they really want to accomplish the goal of disassociating themselves from us, they should be having this argument with the larger society. That they aren't, speaks volumes regarding the larger society's acceptance--or lack thereof of--all of us.

Well, given that I do have such, and you want me to stop speaking for you (perhaps not you personally, but absolutely the general you), that's a lie.

You do not get to decide for me if I have such or not. You are not the arbiter of whether I am or am not a transsexual, I *am* in a position to speak on behalf of many others, and you are familiar with at least what you think my position is.

And it's here that your weakness lies -- that your inherent failure to recognize bigotry when you see it becomes apparent, because when I stand up and say such, that I am a transsexual, classically so, you (plural, not personal) stop and say I am not.

And you do not have that power or authority.

Would you like some examples from the various websites of your side specifically dealing with that, Aria? Shall I pull Jennifer's misgendering of Poster's here, or just stick to the very basic attacks against me?

So no, Aria. That is a lie. There is something deeper.

I think we've been fairly straightforward from our side. We want people who were not born with this issue to stop speaking for us, and acknowledge that they don't have it. What do you think it will take for that to happen?

According to the WPATH standards of care, I have Gender Identity Disorder and have been diagnosed as a transsexual. Am I allowed to speak as a transsexual now? Or do I have to pass your super-secret 100% accurate gender test that's only known by your secret society of top psychiatrists?

If you are, you already know it. You don't need WPATH or anyone else to tell you your body is all messed up.

So, is your body all messed up?

Yes. So can I now speak as a transsexual?

You can speak however you want. It's your words that lead to how you are judged, so knock yourself out. This should be good.

Ah, so the nature of your argument is based on the ideas one holds, not the fact that one is or is not transsexual.

Now it becomes "do you have the right ideas, do you think the right way".

Keep it coming.

There's nothing in particular that I want to say, but when people like you say things about "all transsexuals," my experiences tend to contradict a lot of what you're claiming. For example, my ability to deal with my discomfort with my genitalia to the point where I can be nude in some situations and partially nude in others. According to you folks, that "proves" that I'm not *really* a transsexual woman, but speaking as a transsexual, I can say that your expectations of the feelings and behaviors of transsexuals need to be extended.

You need to get used to being judged by other women in general. There's nothing you can do about it. It's part of the reason that people who cling so strongly to TG cannot gain acceptance- you don't get to tell other people what they think about you. Women know this, others generally don't.

So wait... Now I'm not a woman because I don't let people judge me without speaking up for myself?

Have you heard of feminism? It's a little thing that happened a while back that was all about this sort of thing. You know, women speaking up for themselves and all that.

On what do you base this assertion, Aria?

What makes you think that anyone has to get used to be judged by other women?

What makes you think that people who cling to TG do not have acceptance?

On what do you base that statement, as well?

Why do women know this, while others (which, given the construction, excludes men) do not?

How do you establish that others (inc. men) do not?

Questions, Aria. None of them about you, personally, but about your ideas.

And saying "that's the way it is" is a cop out -- intellectually lazy and markedly uninformed.

Answer those questions.

"What makes you think that anyone has to get used to be judged by other women?"

ROFL .. only a transgender would make this statement. And yes dear, it truly IS the way the world works.

Any woman knows full well they are constantly judged by other women. It IS inherent to being a woman.

Knowing that you're being judged is just fine. But being able to respond to it is another thing entirely.

You're criticizing me for the latter, not the former. I'm well aware of the former.

Wonderful evasion -- do you always fail to answer questions put to you because they are so hard to think through, or is this an aberration on your part?

re/brynn comment above thing i have to say for the concept of "transexual":
it's harder to be then cis.

it's harder to be then genderqueer(which one can be without surgery, doctors, etc etc etc)
...tho it IS hard to be genderqueer in society!

so lets not just devalue that (T)experience and the problems and pain and shit that go with it.
if one is ok with not feeling like they have to define that way, more power to you.
but not everyone is cool with their life as cis (or other things.)

respect. i'm glad people can be happy.but those who are unhappy and in pain re/ their birth body (and life) need SUPPORT, not just
"come to terms with limitations"
that is not fair to those who ARE suffering.
lets be supportive of each OTHER...
otherwise this community idea is pure BULLSHIT....

not harder. Just hard in a different way, javier :)

So here is my question...
If I am correct that there are two main points of view in play here, that of 'classic transsexuals' and that of everyone else, my question is this:

(If I'm understanding correctly) The classic transsexuals do not identify as GLBT, not trans, not transgender, not even allies, and so on. Just 'REGULAR' women who wish to be seen as such. Soooo, why are they here? Why are they part of this discussion? Why do they care so much about what a community that they deny being a part of are doing? My next door neighbor is a 'regular' woman. I doubt she has ever heard of this blog and I doubt she would have a single thought to share here.

Not eloquently stated or asked, but hoping you understand what I mean.


Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 12:45 AM

Soooo, why are they here? Why are they part of this discussion?

It's an excellent question. If they genuinely believe their medical condition has been fixed, they are not transgendered, and they are no longer transsexual, why do they care what we trannies are doing or saying?

The only answer I can surmise is that they don't really believe their own rhetoric and are not addressing what is really bothering them. Which I've gone into in a bit more detail in another comment higher up.

Because what other people do does have an effect on others. How about if I went on TV as spokesperson for all transmen and transwomen and said that it is a form of pedophilia? Then I created a "movement" and shouted down all the transmen and transwomen who disagreed, went on lecture circuits, formed a political action committee and so forth.

Would you care what we trannies were saying?

No I would not care likely care because I am NOT a tranny. You see that is my point...why do you care what transgenders are saying and doing if you aren't one? If you aren't part of that population and you are not an ally, why do you care? There are everyday women all over the country who never give a thought to the lives of transgender folks. If you want to be separate and seen as such then distance yourself and get on with your life and work for/against causes and issues that are experienced by the regular women you claim to be...what am I missing?

"what am I missing?"

Oh just the bit where the transgender and GLB tell transsexuals, the media and the world that like it or not transsexuals are part of their "T" umbrella of social misfits.

therefore .. by association, we are you, and it thereby follows that if we have a problem with that we need to bring it to your attention.

Get it now or do you need a picture ...

battybattybats battybattybats | September 28, 2009 1:08 AM

But pedophilia is inherantly unethical.

So to be harmed by association with pedophilia is obvious. But to be harmed by association with transgender people implies being transgender is inherantly unethical!

And worse is that when the science is actually finished on TS that association with the rest of us may be totally unavoidable! It may be scientific fact! And we cannot say that there is or is not a biologival causal connection until those studies are done!

Since the creation of a movement requires you to gain traction among many other people, that one wouldn't be too difficult, since it's already been done.

And, in fact, is being done, right now, even as we all argue about this.

Which you'd know, if you paid attention.

Do I really need to repeat why it's bad for people who aren't part of a group to speak for that group?

Transgender is not transsexual. Transgender is a political choice, transsexual is a birth defect.

Don't speak for me, and I won't speak for you. If you don't like it, you can certainly distance yourself from us. You have feet too.

Yes, you do.

Those reading you right now are often not familiar with the reasons that those of us having a fight with you may be.

So yes.

Transgender can, indeed, be transsexual -- as every major newscast the last five years on us has proven.

Nor is transgender a choice -- you've noted so yourself. It too is something inherent in the individual.

If you don't want to be spoken for, then you have to speak for yourself -- and not to the one doing the speaking, but to the one's doing the listening.

We are speaking for ourselves. Do you hear?

And, as noted, talking to the wrong people.

Who says we aren't?

I did. You are speaking at the one's doing the speaking, not the one's doing the listening.

If you speaking to the one's doing the listening, you'd be focused on a place outside of Bilerico.

You have no idea where else we are speaking to people. What makes you think we only talk here? Besides that, there are people watching these discussions who don't engage with you. You and your allies who comment are not the only people involved here.

Well, now, see, there's the error -- I actually do have a pretty good idea of whom you are speaking to in general.

I also know there's resistance to a lot of the things that I suggested to folks like Leigh.

Things you've proposed doing, as well.

Just because I'm not commenting or have bookmarks, Aria, doesn't mean I don't still get directed.

Already been going for 25 years to my knowledge Maura. Personally all it would take is for TG's to acknowledge that wearing a dress and clown make up does not make them a woman. Simple really.

What about wearing jeans and a t-shirt and acknowledging our internally identified gender that is also acknowledged by medical professionals, therapists, co-workers, friends, people at the gym, etc?

me again.
since FTM's have been declared "invisible",
and two are here,
i for one hope some of the things i mentioned above will be taken up! brynn and the rest of the posters....

*takes bandages and dark glasses off,gloves, hat off...*


battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 1:18 AM

Awesome! A great point and an H.G. Wells reference always goes well with me.

There are lots of seemingly nonsensical and irrational divides in our communities. Most seem to me to stem from holding other common prejudices. Like the homophobia amongst some crossdresser groups for example.

I'm dating a FtM crossdresser.. something some TS guys were stunned by as they thought there were none. But then some crossdressers are stunned to discover gay crossdressers even exist so busy are they constantly shouting "we're not gay" they don't realise how they often drive those who consider they are gay out of their communities and so render them invisible... well many don't.. some do deliberatly drive them out to ensure that invisibility. Same with TS. There are TS haters amongst the CDs like the CD haters amongst the TS... and they usually use near-identical arguments but inverted. 'people think we are like them' 'we don't get acceptance because of them' 'they make us look bad' etc.

Often the reason given amongst the discriminatory CD groups is to calm the fears of wives of MtF CDs who fear their husband will transition and/or is gay. Even though some are gay and some do transition. Sacrificing some for the benefit of others.. of Cis concerns.

Invisibility, intolerence, defending inequality for selfish reasons. These are threats to genuine equality and to our own integrity.

It seems that we're dealing with the "no true scotsman" fallacy in big bold colors from people whose only aim is to deny a certain group of people their self-identification in order to more legitimately claim their own.

We deny the transgender nothing except to deny you the right to speak for us, or to appropriate a medical condition you have no legitimate claim to. We are organizing, are voices will be heard and transgender lies will no longer be tolerated.

to appropriate a medical condition you have no legitimate claim to.

It is this part that I cannot abide. Because you are telling me that I have no right to the term "transsexual," a term that, according to every definition I've ever heard of it, applies to me.

Phil, as you've mentioned my blog, by name, twice I invite you to drop by some time and take part in the discussion instead of just lurking, and taking potshots from the safety of your own writing on a blog you are a contributor of...and if you decline (which I fully suspect you will), then visit Ariablue's blog, or Sophia's Cutting Anger, Riding the Second Wave, or Cassandra Speaks, or others...take your pick; I'm sure they'd love to have you drop by. If you take issue with what I, or other's have written, why don't you do the right thing and drop by and call us on it. In the meantime, for someone who teaches school and of whom is supposed to be doing post graduate work you don't seem to be comprehending too well. I'm not sure how many times it must be said. Undoubtedly, no matter how many times it's said you and others will refuse to hear.

No one is denying the transgender anything...they can identify as turnips if they like and if the world buys into that then life will be good for them. What we are saying is that we are different from transgender. Now, one more time...DIFFERENT, NOT BETTER...and want nothing - NOTHING - to do with the GLBT. We want the GLBT to acknowledge that...and as a political movement, to keep us out of it. As soon as the GLBT does that, the GLBT will see us disappear back where we were before we woke up one day and found the present state of affairs. As long as the GLBT refuses to acknowledge our position, then they are speaking for us when they have no right to do so; in essence, overtly doing the same thing to us that we are accused of doing for the transgender...when we explicitly say we are not. Classic transsexuals are NOT speaking for the transgender. On more occasions than I can count, I have said on that "toxic" Enough Non-Sense blog of mine that the GLBT, and specifically the transgender, should lobby for whatever rights they feel it is they deserve or need yet, heretofore, do not have. I don't know how much clearer this dumb ass post graduate engineer can put it.

I personally think that's the rub with you, and the other TG here with classic transsexuality: it completely irks you and them that we don't want to belong to your "community".

BTW, I looked and looked and looked at the ENDA thread you keep alluding to in an effort to find a comment in which someone said they didn't want transgender included in ENDA...I couldn't find such a post anywhere. Would you mind linking to that comment. Above, in your first comment in this thread, you say it's what "set you off the most...was when a commenter suggested trans people ought to be left out of ENDA."...please link to that comment please.

man moderation is slow!
ps tg is not pedophilia

i mean really.
got another less insulting analogy to give 'em?
(if you REALLY want to discuss something, that's not the way...)
you probably know that

Before this becomes fodder for the Right, who would have a field day with some of the commentary to use as fear mongering disinfo for commercials against ENDA, what exactly is it that would get the two sides to disengage?

There is no disengagement .. and believe me we are not above taking this fight to the right wing ourselves and giving them the ammunition to blow this into the public awareness where your side will be cleaning egg off your face forever !

My side, Leigh?
I am a Lesbian activist. I simply think that the cause f human rights would be better served by the two sides of the discussion finding some commonality of purpose as a basis to disengage and disperse.

No egg upon my face nor upon the faces of any of my Lesbian colleagues, unless enda fails.

Oh yes Maura .. Make no mistake about it you HAVE chosen which side of the TG/Classic Transsexual/HBS debate that your allied with.

Here's a hint : it's the side that supports the GLBT

Were you ready for 130 comments when ya posted this one, Phil?

As you can tell, it's an extremely divisive issue within the T, and brings out a great deal of hostility.

I'll come back tomorrow, but I suspect that once the group en masse learns of this (and with Cathryn, Aria, Susan, and Evangelina, who all have blogs, it's likely) it will simply get worse.

At least they are being relatively well behaved here thus far.

Not any more. Now they're making personal attacks on people that are unrelated to this discussion and threatening to take away our right to live our lives, albeit through mysterious secret psychiatrist cabals...

Think about getting attacks like this for over a decade, every time you appear on a discussion group or post an article. Ask Cathy why she and her cohorts have been banned from every Yahoo Group, discussion group and LGBT blog on the internet, except this one. Oh. No need to ask. You can already see. This is not attacking them by saying this, because it is a mere fact.

"Just the facts, ma'am. Just the facts."

To answer the question raised as to why we are here defending our identities is this and simply this.

A KKK is full KKK regalia walks into a civil rights march in 1960's Alabama whips off his hood displaying his white countenace and says "I'm Black, I identify as a black man even though I have white skin" I have a feeling those black people in Alabama would at the very least have some pretty strong language to use to that idiot.

Well that is why we are here, defending the attacks all the TG's make in media everywhere. That they are pre op or non op transsexual. Because that is what you do the same as KKK suicide jock. You show the world something as transsexual that is about as far removed from transsexual as can be.

That is why and that is what we want to end. Then we will go back to our Husbands and partners (yes a very few of us are also lay or Lesbian) As for you FtM here. I say I will not peak for you but I will support you if your principles are the same.

No it's actually a basic human right to insist we not be harrassed by me sporting an erection in a female locker room.

BTW, Phil...the name of my blog is not TG's Enough Non-Sense. The title is right there, at the top of the page, in big white block letters...where the titles of all blogs are.

I bet you grade papers too, huh?

with the domain name being tgnonsense, of course.

Well Phil, check out Aria's latest post, where she notes:

"To anyone who doesn’t see it right off, Phil here has decided that my opinions as a woman don’t count the same as “natal women”, and therefore I am “bigoted” if I don’t accept that “transgender” is the same as “woman”."

Gee Phil, were you ready for that?

Ready to find the very same kind of arguments used by those who would eradicate Aria used by her against you?

This is merely a taste, as well, and one they have sworn to provide many opportunities for.

Get used to seeing them -- for some reason they think the best place to talk to this is wherever there is a multitude of what they call "Transgender" so pejoratively.

Makes it easier for them to misgender Monica Helms, to call Tobi Hill-Meyer a misogynist, to label Monica Roberts a racist.

They ignore established science, rather than work to change it, they do not understand the scientific method (as already shown earlier), saying it "makes no sense".

They say that a lot.

Which is revealing -- they do not understand a lot of this stuff, they do not understand a lot about themselves, about where they come from, about the world around them.

They understand how they feel, and they feel offended by the notion that they are even remotely like a part time crossdresser.

Deeply offended.

Once you get past the homophobia, the sexism, the blatant willful ignorance, and other bigotry in general, you find people who are hurt, personally, by the thought of being even remotely associated with something they find abhorrent.

They feel antipathy -- a revulsion in some cases, a fear about that association, and, often, an intense dislike for the idea of being associated with "transgender".

They justify this emotioal feeling with ideas about what is and is not a transsexual in their eyes, they focus the idea, they work towards refining it constantly.

But in the end, anyone who doesn't find such an idea to be revolting -- someone who is fine with having battybats being a sort of distant cousin -- is considered not one of them.

Something else. Maybe even tolerable on an individual basis.

This is familiar to many people, I'm sure, if you apply the family concept we all give at least lip service to when it come to the LGBT.

These are the family members who find us too icky to be around, and who find us to be an embarrassment and a liability. And yet stay in your life.

SO ask yourself gently, kindly, and with that bit of deep thought: how do handle them?

And then just do it.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 12:23 PM

Very well said, dyssonance.

Women have and like having penises?
Pregnancy is not a medical condition?
Playing dress up on the weekend gives real insight into women's daily lives and experiences?
Science doesn't count if you disagree with the findings?
People with penises get to define any term any way they wish, those with vaginas are haters if they object?

Might (numbers) makes right and gives the right to define, ignore or even terrorize the minority?

Do you transgenders even see what you are writing?

There are about five post corrected high level psych and medical professionals who were sympathetic to you and in a position to soften the coming DSM revision. Recently, thanks to threads like this and the out and out insanity on open display, all of them independently said the same thing, "screw them, it won't change my life" All of them were on your side, all of them got fed up with the kind of antics on display here. As a result, in a little over a year every single one of you who doesn't not fit classic transsexuality, the medical condition, will be legally and medically declared fetishists, sexually disordered, mentally ill. Every one of you. Congratulations, you did this yourselves. And your downright insane rantings and incredible through the looking glass warping of reality simply reinforces the diagnosis and will continue to do so.

Freud was full of it, women do not have penis envy.

Pregnancy is a medical condition so much there is an entire specialty devoted to it, it's a medical condition but not a disease.......just as classic transsexuality is a medical condition and transgender is a political construct (and soon to be a full blown mental illness)

Playing dressup on the weekends makes you a crossdresser, not a woman. Ask your wife if it actually gave you any insight into women's lives. I have......

Science and opinion are not equal. Most therapists have zero science creds. Unless you think the world is only 6 thousand years old and was created in a week, you already know this just engaging in reality avoidance. WPATH is currently overrun with feel good therapists and almost no scientists.

Feminism is about stopping you penis people from running roughshod over those of us without them. You are losing, the patriarchy is morally bankrupt, the ends do not justify the means and might makes right is the credo of human monsters.

Good Bleeping bleep, Cathryn -- *more lies*.

"overrun by "feel good therapists" -- well, excluding the fact that therapist is *supposed* to make you feel good, technically, here's the site where they listthe people in charge, and surprise! IT's mostly Sociologists and medical professionals.


Some women *do* have and like having penises. As much as a surprise as that may be to the average man or woman on the street, it's a reality.

No one here is saying you are a hater for objecting to people "defining a term any way they wish (which is another lie).

That's your own imagination at work. Unless you have some othe explanation for the lie.

As a note, while you may consider transgenddr to be an insult, *it is still applicable to you*.

Correctly, no less, under any and all style guides. s both a noun and an adjective. So, you transgender you, Stop using what you admittedly consider an insult.

Or feel it applied to you. Accurately so. Regrdless of what I amy *feel* about that, it's still accurate, and n the wider wold, someone calling any of us a transgender is not doing so innacurately and all you'll do is make tem roll their eyes and patronize you if you complain.

I call horseshit on your secret cabal of bullshittians.

Thats the other lie that finally pissed me off. Now they are *stealth subversives* who have thrown in the towel.

"penis people"? Oh FFS! Essentialism much?

Penis people? DO you have any f'ing idea how freaking sexist that is?

I have a friend, her name is Millie. She transitioned before you were born, Cathryn. She has a saying -- surgery makes some gals go mad.

I'm hard pressed to argue with her...

Some women *do* have and like having penises. As much as a surprise as that may be to the average man or woman on the street, it's a reality.

I've actually met cis-women that feel this way. Lots of them, actually. Some of them without any transgender feelings at all.

Apparently, according to the definitions set forth by the likes of RB and others, they're not real women.

I'm sure their husbands and children would be surprised to hear that.

Until I see one shred of evidence that your secret cabal of "post corrected psych and medical professionals" exist, I'm calling bullshit on you.

You're lying to all of us. And your lies are now sounding quite extreme and insane.

You criticize our "antics," but all I ask, time and again, is for your supporting research. Your supporting studies. Your data. I get nothing but crickets time and again.

If your unverified and unsubstantiated information is what the psychiatric community considers "logical and salient," then I really have lost faith in the scientific rigor of the psychiatric community.

No one is going to listen to you or anyone else if you can't back your information up with proof. And you ignore every single request for such.

I was a bit busy with life when this article hit. 161 comments so far. Way to go, Phil. After this article, and the guts to post it, I have to says that you have become my newest hero. Thank you.

It's interesting to see that I'm not the only one these HBS/classical transsexual/true transsexual/women with a surgical history of being born as male seem to hate. Also, it seems many more trans women have come forward to point out the bigotry that this group espouses, the same bigotry I have received for well over a decade. Karl Rove would be proud of their way to weave in lies, inaccuracies and the swift-boating techniques they use. But, I really think Karl learned his trade from them.

Well, now that you've shown up, you are being called:

"Helms is a monster, a vicious sociopathic monster with severe bipolar problems (not my diagnosis, one from an actual psychiatrist)"

and apparently your comment was made to

"...provoke a personal retort from me that will allow Bil to ban me."

by "radical Bitch" elsewhere.

Bat's gets it even worse.

Me, I get the same stuff she's used before.

I appreciate the wonderful group of trans women, like yourself, bat, timber and others to have taken up the baton in my absence. You don't know how much I love you all for your strength of character.

This article by Phil maybe the final curtain call on the last bastion left for the intolerant few to spread their hatred outside their own domains. Bigotry is the correct label. Many on this posting pointed it out. And, if a true psychologist has the balls to diagnose anyone without a true face-to-face evaluation, and do it publicly, is flirting with malpractice on multiple levels. Of course, the bigots don't care about that either.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 12:46 AM

I get it worse? Not recently.. to my face at least i have no idea what they may be saying behind my back.

Not that it at all phases me. Ad Hominems are signs of weak argument. But we are all human, we all can get so emotionally worked up we can't produce a valid argument and just vent. I don't hold grudges either. I could still happily become friends with anyone in any of these discussions. It wouldn't be the first time a fervent enemy had become my friend.

Though it seems in this discussion none can even respond to any of my comments. Surely if im wrong they'd be easilly refuted? But instead my remarks about scientific method and what that means for this issue and all the rest stand starkly.

If these points cannot be refuted then surely we must all consider what that means for the entire issue. Ideology must give way to scientific fact, psychology notions built on shakey assumptions have to give way to measurable neurobiology.

Same goes for the human-rights aspects of these issues. Cogency and consistency is required if anyone claims any human rights they have to support the human rights of the other side.

This subject involves medical ethics, indiginous rights (many indiginous peoples traditions do not make a distnction between transsexual or crossdresser) and more.

Maybe people should step back, stop trying to 'win' for a moment and take a look at the whole of the issue including all these aspects and their implications and consequences.

Can there be peace?

No way, it's gone long past that.

Disagree with a TG about the realities of your own life and identity and you are immediately labeled a bigot and worse.

Reality check:
Putting a pink ribbon on your penis doesn't make it feminine

If you don't want an actual female body, don't tell me you are a woman. BTW, that is not just me, the classic transsexuals, HBSers, WBT speaking, that is 99% of the world. They "get" being born with the wrong body and correcting it, they shake their collective heads in disbelief that someone who has and wants to keep a penis can demand to be considered a woman, demand access to intimate women's space (showers specifically, there is broad general acceptance of a female appearing person using the ladies bathroom so stop reframing that, it's dishonest in the extreme)

MH just tried to turn an observation I've made about her crowd for more than six years back at me. The Karl Rove/neo-con observation.

When you greet every attempt to define ourselves with accusations of bigotry, hatred, self loathing, body mulilation, defining you (you do that, we don't) no peace is possible. Me, personally, I had only four possible cheeks to turn and ran out a long time ago.

What I didn't count on was the spirit of anti-intellectualism, the general inability for most to actually think logically beyond sound bite reality, the total willingness to put the unwashed, uneducated, almost illiterate opinion on a par with those who refrain themselves to logic and facts......I never figured that would prevail, but in these circles it does.

Finally, a *little* honesty.

There cannot be "peace".

After that, it's more the same bs.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 12:31 PM

dyssonance, thank you for your attempts here to bring some reason and sanity to the debate, but it's utterly hopeless. The unadorned slurs are starting here now--probably time to shut the thread down. (Phil?)

I gave up months ago with these folks, after one visit to their website. Way too crazy and hateful for me. Rivals anything the Religious Right--Fred Phelps, even--throws at us.

If you don't want an actual female body, don't tell me you are a woman.

And yet you deny the experiences of those of us that match your definition of "transsexual" and "woman" when they don't agree with your own experiences.

You're ignoring those that would challenge your viewpoint here.

We want to know your opinion on this issue! All comments from unregistered users are held for moderation. While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

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What. The. Fuck.

So now you're going from taking an argument about these issues to making completely unrelated personal attacks on someone?

You've lost all of your credibility at this point, if you had any to begin with.

What BS?

And no, no clocking today. Only once in the last 18 months -- and ya'll have made it abundantly clear that one happened.

Yes, I left, but I wouldn't call the house a hutch, myself.

But thanks for the thought :)

We want to know your opinion on this issue! All comments from unregistered users are held for moderation. While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

The editorial team will delete a comment that is off-topic, abusive, exceptionally incoherent, includes a slur or is soliciting and/or advertising. Repeated violations of the policy will result in revocation of your user account. Please keep in mind that this is our online home; ill-mannered house guests will be shown the door.

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Wow. That's a low blow, and completely inappropriate.

Actually it is very appropriate and nothing I said there is made up. It is all there at .. no wait .. dyss took down the videos (evidence)

The title of this article reads "Who are the 'real' women"

When I point to evidence that one of you is pretending, you call it "inappropriate"

Well sorry, sometimes the truth hurts.

Not passing is NOT "pretending." Not everyone is blessed with a feminine appearance or access to FFS and related things...

Making personal attacks is inappropriate, not only that but its shitty debate strategy. You prove nothing when you say "this entire category of people is not worthy of respect [dehumanizing], just look at this one video posted by this ONE individual as proof!" That's Bush league debate--and I mean GW Bush... Cheney and Karl Rove style! I've seen the video, WTF does it prove about any group of human beings on this planet? Nothing. Shitty debate.

No more attacks. I've repeated this time and time again. This will not stand.

Interesting - I haven't taken down any videos, Leigh...

I made it very clear that I expected commenters to treat one another like human beings and not attack. Calling someone a sociopath, calling someone a fetishist, or denying someone the right to self-identify (telling someone who identifies as a woman they are not because they don't meet your criteria) are all hurtful, anti-intellectual attacks. This started out fairly above the fray. Then last night it exploded in ignorance. What happened?

This comment thread will likely get shut down, and I want to be clear about why. I'm not trying to silence the opinions of anyone, I'm trying to stop the very personal attacks on people, and the dehumanizing happening.

Folks, if someone doesn't want to be included in the transgender community--LET 'EM! You don't want them. Seriously. They don't want to be trans, let's leave them out. Forget them. With some of the attacks that some of my friends have gotten, and some of the attacks on ME, I'd rather them not be in my community either. You're free. Bye.

Most of the most hateful language seems to be coming from a small group that have SPECIFICALLY ignored my request for civility at the top. I was clear, folks. No ugliness. It is specifically because I wanted everyone to get a chance to have their say and defend their point of view in a safe space. If you can't do so without attacking someone personally or using abusive language, sorry, you don't have a point to make. Other than you hate some type of person and you think other people should hate that type of person.


If I'm asked to shut the comment thread down, I'm going to have to oblige. I've received every single comment as an email, and while some folk have chosen to keep it respectful, many have spit in the face of civility and come out with guns blazing. Shame on you. I wanted this to be a free exchange of ideas, not a free exchange of hatred.

I HAVE learned a few things positive and negative from all perspective. However, I am severely disappointed with the timbre of some of the pieces of this thread.

Keep it civil, and don't complain that I'm silencing you if you can't.


Hey .. just one minute there phil ..

Dyssonance defines herself as a sociopath ON HER OWN BLOG .. several times

Nobody is calling names for merely repeating what someone defines themself as!


and here: "Calling me a sociopath is not a name, it is a description. It is not a label."

and here: quote "I’m selfish – oh lordy I’m selfish. I do nothing that I don’t get something out of. Its a part of my psychopathy – my sociopathic tendencies where, ultimately, I really don’t give a rats ass about anyone or anything that doesn’t benefit me."

and several other places where she defines herself as a sociopath

Just curious, Leigh:

Did I touch a nerve?

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 1:30 PM

Paradox, it's par for the course for this group. Have you been to their website? I went only during my first ever exchange with them, never again. It's too ugly. That's why I refuse to directly engage with them, choosing instead to reply to people on this thread who have demonstrated an ability to reason, adhere to basic logic, and remain civil.

I went over to their website, but I don't even know where to begin over there.

I have this irrational hope that I would be able to get them to engage in rational discourse with me, perhaps being able to discuss the merits of various studies, papers, philsophies, etc. But if this thread here is indication, their position is based on irrational fears, not logic and reason.

As I think more about this, I'm offended by their behavior in the same way they claim to be offended by ours. They are taking my class of individuals, i.e. transsexuals, and claiming that they are the arbiters of defining that term and what that experience is like.

As a transsexual, I do not like the idea of someone else speaking for me when that contradicts my own experiences. It's the same issue that they yell at us for.

It seems that we're fighting over these terms. We both want to define "woman" and "transsexual." They want those terms to be limited to those with their exact experiences and beliefs. I want those terms to be defined based on definable metrics that allow for a wide variety of experiences of those terms. These two positions cannot stand together.

And based on this thread, their position seems based in fear, not reason.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 5:37 PM

Paradox, ultimately neither we nor them get to define the terms in question here: they're in much wider usage, and what they mean to the larger society more closely fits our meanings than theirs.

Maybe that's why this argument always degenerates into personal attacks on their parts. They're fighting a losing battle and even they know it.

RB, et. al.

You claim that we are anti-intellectual, but you resort to name-calling and personal attacks instead of reason.

You say that we are ignoring scientific evidence, but when asked to produce it, you ignore us.

You say that we should allow transsexuals to speak for themselves, but you then do not allow those of us that fit your definitions to speak as transsexuals about our alternative experiences.

You are intellectually dishonest and either unintentionally or intentionally ignoring anything that could possibly challenge your viewpoints.

From what I can see, your "minority group" is not defined by a medical condition. It is defined by a philosophy. A belief structure. And any that disagree with you are not included.

Your position is bankrupt, and your behavior in this thread proves it, as far as I can tell.

I gave the location of two separate websites that archive most of the abstracts. If you cannot be bothered to go there and look them up why should I spoon feed you? Instead you deny they exist? And that makes my position bankrupt?

I ignore people who openly insult me or are impossible to talk quality of life improves that way. Your replies to me indicated someone who would not listen, someone who's attitudes towards women I find offensive in the extreme. So I didn't answer you and never will again.

You asked, I answered, you ignored. Then you demanded.

Since you did the courtesy of responding to me, I'll return the favor.

If you cannot be bothered to go there and look them up why should I spoon feed you?

Because you're the one that says they exist. Asking me to sift through a poorly organized website to find these 300 studies and determine which ones actually support your point is absurd. If they exist, you should be able to point me directly at them.

When people reference studies in books, papers, and similar things, they reference specific studies by name and publication information. They don't just wave their hand at a body of work and say, "Oh, you can find it in that mess over there." That's called laziness.

And that makes my position bankrupt?
Combined with everything else here, yes.

You asked, I answered, you ignored. Then you demanded.
And I continue to demand. That's how rational discourse works. We identify the facts and discuss their relevance. We can't get to discussing the relevance of your studies unless you present them.

so your excuse for behaving badly is that the transgender person cannot afford surgery .. I see

Perhaps you too should read and see where she repeatedly defines herself as a sociopath.

or is it simpler to circle the wagons ?

Paradox, its not worth it. These folk aren't looking for intelligent and fair debate. Its clear now. Now let's stop engaging them. I'm done with them. I'm getting hate mail now. Its not real debate, its hate.

You're getting hate mail? Damn.

*nods* Fair enough. My presence here will now cease.

Oh, I know its not me, but I'm taking your advice and departing from this thread for now.

I have a tendency to keep trying even when things have disintegrated way too far. I'd love to keep arguing, but I think you're right that I'll gain nothing from it except more annoyance.

Despite warnings from everyone, I got myself into this mess! I wanted to give everyone with an intelligent opinion the chance to freely argue their side. I was told it would turn this way fast. I sort of guessed it would, but wanted to see if we could have civil debate.


Frankly, I'm down with the women who wish to be referred to as women and nothing more. However, I am not down with any of their claims of being able to dictate what someone else identifies as. This is fundamental to my existence. End of story.

This has been eye-opening, lovies!

I hope that it has been eye-opening for others. I often worry about how the rest of the GLB community perceives us trans people when we have conflicts this disgusting and pathetic.

I'm glad that we have solidarity with the GLB community, of which I am also a part due to being a bisexual woman. We are all struggling for the right to behave outside of the restrictions of the gender requirements that are placed on us. We all face some very similar issues. We're all struggling for the freedom to simply be ourselves.

I hope that those that would scream about being let out don't sully the connections between these two different, but similar, groups.

As well demonstrated in this thread, the hate batshitters are acting like the birthers of the trans communities. And that's not a comparison I make lightly. But let's take a look at the comparisons:

- Despite being extremely loud and implying they represent some vast silent majority, they're actually a tiny handful of people. Cathryn's "don't call us icky transgenders" petition has attracted only 135 signatures in over a year.

- They make wild claims and when asked to back them up, they're unwilling -- and more to the point -- unable to do so. Instead they just keep reiterating their misleading arguments all the louder.

- The fundamental illogic in their core arguments: That having people claim a self-identity for themselves is somehow oppressing to people who don't feel that identity fits them. They demand the right to chose their self-identity, but insist on not allowing anyone else to call themselves "transsexual."

- Rage appears to be the force that gives their lives meaning.

- The paranoia and bigotry expressed toward anyone who's "not like them." I and others have said -- repeatedly -- that we're willing (and do) acknowledge that Cathryn and her peers consider themselves to be transexual-but-transgender. However, they're unwilling to show respect towards our identifies -- and in fact do things like intentionally misusing pronouns, etc.

I suspect what's sending them the bend is that there are happy, successful people in this world who are "known to be trans." Because that refutes the victimology that seems to be central to their worldview.

someone please explain to me how this isn't a total violation of the TOS here? I'm named by name as a hateful batshitter and compared to the insane birthers......and that's just the opening sentence.

And for what it's worth, my "pathetic" petition doubled in size in just the past couple of months.

Again a suggestion. Sign it if you are willing to set us free from the transgender umbrella. Those that don't but claim they are setting us free are the liars. 'Tis a simple test really.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 12:20 AM

Polarised thought is often a logical fallacy. Amusing perhaps that you disregard all possibilities other than a false binary when other possibilities do exist. Especially when one is in itself a binary choice.. as you should see.

I do not sign your petition because i do not agree with its ENTIRE meesage.

I respect EACH individual transsexuals Universal Human Right to self-identify as not-transgender or transgender on a person-by-person basis.

To support the total EXclusion of Transsexual from Transgender would be every iota a disregard and violation of my human rights obligation to the right of self-identification of every individual transsexual as it would be to support the Total INclusion under the term.

So it's logically false to declare me a liar because i have not signed your petition. To sign it would require the same hypocracy that saying all transsexuals must accept the label transgender would. Its the same wrong for the exact same reason!

Create a different petition about respecting EVERYONE's right to defining themselves as transgender or not-transgender free of vitriol and respecting all people as equals and equally valid and I'll sign that imediately. Thats the human-rights respecting option.

Indeed, and more Evangelina. It's common decency, common sense, and respect that demands that all people with penises stay out of women's locker rooms. It's unbelievable that ANY person transitioning would even THINK about doing so, much less do it. I waited for two additional years after I had SRS, until I had some FFS to allow myself into that particular women's space.

If I saw any hint of your male genital status in my locker room Paradox I'd run you out so fast your head would spin.

Sara ...

If I saw any hint of your male genital status in my locker room Paradox I'd run you out so fast your head would spin.

I find it reassuring that my cisgender female coworkers that know my surgical status don't run me out of the bathroom, even when we both use it at the same time.

I'm glad they're less transphobic than you.

Phil, let's be totally honest here, you started with the insults within the original post. That you cannot acknowledge that or the 48 straight hours of out and out insults I received here speaks volumes. Calling me a bigot and a liar over and over somehow didn't violate the TOS here, colour me surprised.

There never was to be an honest debate, given the editorial bias of this blog that was always impossible.

The right reads these blogs........I figure an 87% chance that trans gets dumped from ENDA if it ever even makes the floor. The dems have no backbones, the right will jump on the points we make and Obama sold everyone down the river already.

Medical model women of history have access to full civil rights right now under the ADA given a single decent federal lawsuit. Plus we have the Richards decision which states a post corrected woman is a woman. If needed we'll use those.

Debate over. Game set and match.

I think the debate's been over for a while. This has just been yelling.

I wasn't TOSing anyone before because I thought we'd remain adults. Now I'm warning that I'll be TOSing anyone who takes it personal. If you can't make a point without attacking someone's humanity, we don't need to see what you have to say.

All in all, I see this whole mess as a clash between those who could be labeled as assimilationist or traditionalist and those who have a more radical vision of what should be.

On the assimilationist/traditionalist side, you have a group of people who firmly believe that society at large represents the proper, knowledgeable arbiter of what male and female or woman and man means. They believe that very specific parameters can be defined and must be fulfilled to receive that magical stamp of "M" or "F" on one's drivers license and one's life. They believe that impostors abound and that these impostors will defy the boundaries of folk wisdom to such an extent that we shall all face the wrath of larger society. They fear that those who have a true claim to manhood or womanhood will be indiscriminately swept up in this wrath.

On the radical side, you have people who believe that the individual is the proper, knowledgeable arbiter of what their identity is. They believe that identity is the province of individual judgement and consequently, they believe self-definition is an inalienable right.

I posit that the two sides are, in many respects, mutually incompatible. Volleys of words and fusillades of invective will not settle this. Only time and social change will decide.

A word of advice to those of the assimilationist/traditionalist persuasion: this is a progressive LGBT blog and as such, it tends to represent the voices of those who support the right to self-determination in guiding their lives. There is a pretty obvious linkage between the LGB and the T. On one hand, you have the belief that one has the inalienable right to determine who one falls in love with. On the other hand, you have the belief that one has the inalienable right to be whomever one feels they are. At its core, this belief system is about individual freedom. Since you do not fully believe in individual freedom and self-determination, your ideas are unlikely to gain purchase here. You can hang out and annoy people, insult people, and make a general nuisance of yourselves, but you’re not accomplishing much… other than portraying yourselves as unpalatable people. If you really want to make an impact, then do as so many others are doing: organize. Tossing heated language around on an inhospitable blog thread is akin to pissing into the wind. Do something productive with your time rather than treading where you are unwelcome.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 28, 2009 3:19 PM

Well articulated and said, timberwraith! (Really wish the advice would be taken.)

This is one of the ugliest most vile conversations I have ever witnessed. For those of you who will not claim transgender and transsexuals who do not meet your criteria here is a news flash for you. I was born a woman and if you think I'm in a hurry to claim you as part of my community of women...think again. I have never seen this degree of ugliness in MY COMMUNITY...

I truly hope that the work I'm doing with families and children will eradicate the pain, damage and self loathing that perpetuates this level of hatred toward others. There is one and only one reason to set yourself apart as an exclusive group and that is to set yourself up as more worthy than another. Well you aren't that special. Everyone is deserving of human dignity and respect and EQUALITY.

HATE IS HATE will someone please shut this conversation down?!?!!?!

Seconded. This kind of war of words, laden with dramatics, is serving no purpose.

Fault is to be found on both sides.

I am so very tired of this erupting every single time that the prefix trans is attatched to anything on LGBT blogs.

I've also grown frustrated with Bilerico due to these issues constantly erupting. This is the first time I've actually come on here in months, possibly over a year, to dip my toe in this fray.

It's clear, here, that both the HBS/TS/"true" transsexual crowd and the rest of the trans* community feel that their identities are being attacked and that this is not a completely safe place for them to share their viewpoints without it erupting into flame wars.

Perhaps a better question to be asking, instead of "who the real women are," is to ask how we can better support safe and inclusive discussions on Bilerico. How we can make this site a safer place for people of all types to have discussions. How can we avoid these sorts of flame wars on other sites over time?

Oh Really .. well perhaps I ought to bring one of my women born women friends in here that can tell you she doesn't want YOU in HER community!

Please quit with the self loathing crap.. you may be, I certainly am not. We are not asking to be set apart, we are saying that we dont appreciate being included in against our will. Show me where any of us were ever asked if we wanted to be labeled under the GLB's T umbrella ! Go on, go find the questionaire that was sent out to ANYONE!

You cant find it because it doesn't exist. We are not asked, the GLB simply added a T to their acronym and then went about speaking for us as though we had asked them to. That is assimilation.

And now they are doing the same with the Intersexed, despite their calls to not be included, the GLBT simply ignore them and add them for their own good.

You should all be ashamed of yourselves!

Interesting. Mr. Phil "Oooh Noooo Mr. Phil" Reese writes an entire blog post with my blog as the center piece...yet calls foul "by reason of insult and attack" on those who respond to the transgender appropriation of classic transsexualism. He makes those attacks on my blog in spite of me never, ever misgendering any transgender nor allowing anyone else to do it on my blog in the comment section...and in spite of saying over and over that the transgender should lobby for whatever right or freedom it is they feel they need yet, so far, don't have.

I'll say it again, the real issue is that it just plain irks the GLBT that a group in which the GLBT has assimilated doesn't want to belong to their "community" and is now, very firmly, putting our foot down against such assimilation. The GLBT have a position along the lines of anyone who doesn't support the GLBT has to be homophobic and a bigot. Knock yourself out; those insults have long lost their sting.

I've been around for a long while...and believe me, the gender debate has just started for we are not asking the GLBT to acknowledge our autonomy anymore, we are demanding they do so. Everyone here can remember when a thread such as this was so one sided with participants it wasn't funny; seldom was there more than one or two who held the classic transsexual's position...but more and more of us have formed a cohesive front. Failure to act on the part of the GLBT will absolutely result in the prophesies of both Maura and Leigh...count on it.

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Probably pointless but again some basic facts:

Transsexuality is a medical condition for a specific set of criteria.
It is important to defend the definition against appropriation for the following reasons. Every time someone not surgery tracked claims to be transsexual they give cover for insurance companies denying coverage even in the face of the scientific studies.

Every time someone claims to be a transsexual who doesn't need SRS they increase the chances it will become less and less available and it is a matter of life and death to actual transsexuals. It already has happened. The number of world class surgeons doing SRS in the US has been cut more than in half now. And you don't stop there, you deny deny deny the studies exist even when told where to find them. Whenever a study is written about, you attack attack attack it's legitmacy..and you do this because?

This is worse than appropriation, it is potentially life threatening, it sure as hell is direct interference with those getting treatment. Those who actually need it to have any sort of future quality of life suffer as a direct result.

In short, it is a big f'ing deal.

It's not only identity theft, it's already caused direct harm in this and other fashions.

Go ahead and call me names, some of you have been doing that for a long long time now and some of you drove me deliberately out of activism when I asked only recongition of differences in return.

Some of you actually threatened my life, some turned me in to Homeland Security as a terrorist, some of you magazine bombed me with over 300 magazine subscriptions in my name. Some of you branded me a racist. Some of you tried to leave me homeless when I was taking in newly transitioned women. Some of you tried to claim credit for things I did. Some of you bombarded my internet account with virii every time I spoke up, that I'm waiting for again. A few of you I've quietly maintained friendship with despite our differences, damn few unfortunately.

You outnumber us but we somehow victimize you by defending our own identities. Some of you run absolutely amok while others then "praise" you for levelheadedness. Every contact with trans people leaves me feeling like I fell through the looking glass and yet you collectively always then question my own sanity. Business as usual

You've been through a lot because of this garbage. But you aren't alone, and never were. It just took time for people to speak up.

I and a growing number of others intend to see this through, no matter how long it takes. We are going to shove that misogynistic, gynophobic, sociopathic bootheel off of our lives and our bodies.

Count on it.

1 - The medical condition explicitly allows for non surgery tracked persons.

See WPATH SoC v6. ICD or DSM-IV as well.

2 - Fear based and unfounded assumption. THe same argument is being used nearly verbatim of "death panels" in the current debate, and there is absolutely no evidence of such.

3 - If you have studies, *identify them*. Not all that hard. What you fail to see is that the studies are not attacked on the basis of legitimacy, but your interpretation of the findings is what's attacked. Given the already established lack of understanding for the scientific method, this is no surprise.

4 - The only appropriation is when someone is informed they are not a transsexual. That is you appropriating their care and medical diagnosis.

5 - There are more world class surgeons in the US now than there were 15 years ago. Two of them transwomen themselves. Your definition of world class is lacking.

The reason you have such trouble is not because you are defending yourself, but because you are attacking others -- and doing so in bigoted, sexist, vile ways and with nasty language.

Your facts are not facts. They are your opinions. You keep saying how you will "go away", but you want to keep the term transsexual just for a portion of the total transsexual population that has the same narrative history and objectives.

Sorry. Not. Gonna. Happen.

Take your fear mongering elsewhere. So long as *I* have breath, I will indeed be speaking to it for what it is.

After all, what was it ya'll labeled me? Oh yeah -- a transvestite DC hooker. I'm pretty sure that was Sara's point.

Ya'll ain't seen *nothing* yet.

excuse me? I labeled you what?

This is just plain lying.

you want the quote? You are speaking as one of them, Cathryn -- hence the "ya'll".

You don't get to separate yourself out *that* easy.

Radical Bitch,

This new comment addresses some of my question, was it meant as a response to me?

It helps make sense of some things for me, but I was asking about non-transsexual transgender folks. I understand the concerns around appropriation of transsexuality, but what about folks who aren't doing that? You speak very negatively of transgender folks in general. Is that just about those who attack transsexuals and appropriate transsexuality? Because they way you've framed things much of your comments seems to apply just as easily to transgender folks who haven't done any of that.

1. a particular system of religious worship, esp. with reference to its rites and ceremonies.
2. an instance of great veneration of a person, ideal, or thing, esp. as manifested by a body of admirers.
3. the object of such devotion.
4. a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc.
5. Sociology. a group having a sacred ideology and a set of rites centering around their sacred symbols.

6. a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader.
7. the members of such a religion or sect.
8. any system for treating human sickness that originated by a person usually claiming to have sole insight into the nature of disease, and that employs methods regarded as unorthodox or unscientific.

Seems we are seeing this with those who are espousing hate, telling lies and swift-boating those not in their cult. Anybody for Kool-Aid?

You know what ...

You can't let classic transsexuals go .. because you need us to legitimize your transvestism, your gender queerness, your sissy boys and crossdressers, your non op transsexual status and your activism.

You cant simply say "be gone, your free" as Phil would say, because you have created an entire media and public image that have joined us.

If you were sincere, your leaders and activists would make public statements to the media that you wrongly assumed we were part of your umbrella.

You cant let us go because in that one statement, your entire philosphy would fall flat on its face. The public would finally see the lies you promoted, the villification you have perpetuated, and the falseness you have built your church on.

You wont let us go, and you are scared to death that we will simply leave you holding a bag full of nothing but theories and spectrums that nobody outside the GLBT believe for one minute.

Interesting thing is, they can let *you* (plural) go.

The shame is yours.

But, at this point, you'll never let it go.

I can not only let you go, but I can show you the door, give you a going away gift - of MY choosing - and break out champagne when you are just 6 inches from the door.

Basically, what Barney Frank said to the woman at his town hall meeting seems to be VERY appropriate right about now.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 2:56 AM

We are legitimised by the basic universal human right of freedom of expression and self determination. See what those mean for sex and gender by looking up the yogyakarta principles. They arent hard to find.

Besides it takes only one single TS in all the world to legitimise including some TS under the umbrella.

Besides i prefer the umbrella term: Sex and Gender Diversity. S&GD. Thats the one being used by the Australian Human Rights Comission and many others. It includes Intersex and Transsexual and Genderqueer and Crossdressers etc.

With the diversity in the very term. Not colonising, not erasing. Just people with related intersecting and interacting human rights and legislation issues.

The acronym GLBT is commonly understood to mean:

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and TRANSGENDER

I have never heard it used or even implied to mean:

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and TransSEXUAL

and yet originally that was the meaning of the "t", I fought hard to get it added and now regret that greatly.

havasumoma you don't know me but the first and most egregious case of a child being abused by the system was the Aurora Lipscomb case. The child and her mother are still in hiding. They are dear dear friends of mine and I fought almost two years to get that child from children's services. They are regular guests in my home. (different last name now)

But then I'm a monster still right?

Assumptions, so much fun and games.


I fought almost two years to get that child from children's services.

So you've been involved in the Aurora Lipscomb case...

and yet originally that was the meaning of the "t", I fought hard to get it added and now regret that greatly.

You were instrumental in getting T added to LGBT...

There are now tests. I know because I helped develop them and they have been tested by top level psychiatrists and found 100% accurate which is highly unusual.

And you were involved in creating these secret tests among "top psychiatrists" that wish to remain hidden.

Um. Sounds like you've been REALLY active in the trans community. Why is it that we've never heard of you outside of your web presence? Have you done all this work in secret or something? Kinda hard when you're talking about such major events in LGBT history...

That's because she hasn't done anything in the 21st Century, and the 20th for that matter. Because, like all the other things, she cannot prove anything she said. How do I know? I was around at the time.

She also mentioned on her blog being interviewed for a book by Raven Kaldera...

If you believe what she says, she seems to be EXTREMELY active in these circles.

I wonder what Raven Kaldera has to say about RB's involvement in his book...

ask him......I reprinted the entire the book and verify it.

I believe Monica Roberts would verify every word I wrote is true. Helms has done everything possible to erase me from the history but the facts are the facts........and erasing me from the history is a gift.

I also co-founded NTAC, was it's first facilitator, co-founded It's Time Ohio, was it's first chair, co-founded Equality Ohio (as Equality Day Ohio) Also founded the Transsexual Avengers and the Mid-West Transsexual Alliance. I lobbied Congress, lobbied two different State legislatures, testified repeated before one of them. With Dr. Fox, we came within a hair's breathe of changing the Ohio birth certificate block, worked over a year and a half and were almost there when the legislator we were working with died on us. Being under attack by local trans people then as well and both of us not born in Ohio, we dropped it in disgust.

With Ethan St. Pierre I organized, collected the funds and disbursed them for the only LGBt specific Katrina relief effort.

Not to mention after being disabled on the job, took all the resources I had left in the world, pooled them with three others and started the Gallae Central House housing project.

Many know my name, many others have worked tirelessly to make sure it isn't in the history.

In the Aurora case I personally arranged the pro bono attorney when the high profile transie one bailed three weeks in leaving the mother with zero representation and worked those two years with the mother and the attorney when absolutely no one else from the community was there for them. I was there for the supervised visitations when I could get away with it, celebrated the return of the child with them and helped them move.

and I don't lie. I was one of your best advocates and was rewarded with abuse, hatred and violence from the community.

and your point was what?

In Cathryn's defense, she's not exaggerating here in some areas.

She really did co-found NTAC, etc -- I can't speak to the Lipscomb family (in part because I've had a run in with the trans one that now claims IS).

THis is not about demonizing them -- they like to describe stuff used to mark their habits as delf descripive, but this is aboutthe manner in which they make their poits and the underlying natue of their arguments.

She had gallae house taken from her by people she trusted -- "transvestites and crossdressers" as I recall -- and suffered rather greatly because of it.

I am *very* hard on Cathryn. But she has done work to help, and to ignore that effort is a disservice tot he community as a whole.

She may be discrediting it as she goes on, but the work was genuine.

I'm not trying to demonize them. I'm just rather incredulous that someone of her credentials could resort to such school yard bullying tactics as she's doing here. I find it easier to believe that she's appropriating someone else's identity or something like that.

How do you know that her stories are true, out of curiosity?

Before I started becoming involved in the sort of thing I did about a year of non stop diggig into the history of activism, and I've made freinds with many of the people that she knows and worked with. For example, she's familiar with and knows Polar, as well as Monica Roberts -- both of whom still talk about her in nice terms (saying she's much a less a difficult person face to face).

I have also become very involved in various groups, and the trans community is actually pretty small. FInding the history takes a lot of perseverance and effort, but Cathryn's been there -- her peak was late 90's to about 2002.

She was there the first time trans stuff was stripped by the HRC, lobbied in the same group as Donna Rose and Monica Helms, above.

The biggest problem is that she's become a bit cynical and bitter online, which isn't too uncommon.

We tend to eat our own.

Donna was never at any lobby days at that time, or any time in the future. I did lobby with Cathy in 1999. Also, Cathy has said nice things about me in one of her postings about the formation of NTAC.

No, she was, Monica. Sorry. I've seen the evidence and talked to the people with her. Twice. after that, she gave that part up.

You never lobbied with me ever. You might have been there in 99, if so I avoided you even then because of how you acted towards me. The only time you ever showed me the slightest respect is when you tried to seduce me at SSC and Monica Roberts rescued me from you.

I don't recall you being there in 97 at all.

"Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies."

The Katrina thing is real. TAVA contributed $1500 to that, and she never once thanked us. That $1500 was from an organization that never had enough in their treasury to buy an crappy used car.


TAVA tossed in 500 bucks...stop lying. We only raised about 1500 buck total.

And you tried to take credit for the kid I flew out of Seattle to boot.

And both Ethan and I thanked TAVA profusely at the time........

Enough of this lying.

Then the person who said she was sending $1000 in our name lied to us. Thanks for the correction.

See, I'm willing to admit when I'm wrong. You? Not so much, right?

*does a bit of research on you*

Wow. From what I can see... you really *HAVE* done all these things that you claim to. I'm really surprised. Assuming that you aren't just someone taking her identity for a ride...

You and I actually run in some surprisingly close circles. Some really awesome circles, I might add. And I'm really sorry to see what you've become in recent days. I'm very sorry for whatever pains and hurts have befallen you to put you in this place. For someone that has done so much for the transgender, queer, and pagan communities... it's sad to see you so angry and hurt.

I wish you solace, madam. Despite our differences of opinions and my issues with your behaviors here, you have done much for the community and deserve peace.

What I've "become" has been utterly consistent for about a decade.....

I've always stood against colonization of transsexuality from the get go. I've always fought the transgender umbrella concept since it began.....and I still did all those other things as well because I felt it was right.

I'll never get an apology from the likes of you, never expect one....but you sure as hell owe me one anyway.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 12:57 AM

What you felt was right?

Feellings are very dangerous things to base notions of right and wrong on. While they can drive us to do good and help feellings often are selfish, hypocritical, biased and bigoted because of unconcious acceptance of double-standards stereotypes and the like.

When it comes to ethics and morality feellings allow for and can drive people to the worst of attrocities.

The WHY something is right or wrong is very important. And too important to leave to the unconcious mind. It needs a thorough understanding. Feelings all to often need to be challenged by clear concious thought and question. People otherwise would keep their racist feellings, sexist feellings, homophobic feellings etc.

One of the feminist activists in my family often has said that women are oppressed by being taught that their feellings were who they are rather than their thoughts and their choices and their questions, as it keeps them believing what men wanted them to believe, accepting the status quo and being good housewife consumers easily swayed by advertising.

So why not examine the WHY that this is right or wrong? What are the ethics of the issue?

Bats.....this is so patently offensive it does deserve at this this much response.

Pure mysogyny but you'd have no idea why.

I do not respond to you because experience has taught doing so provokes novels of totally incoherent thought with logic trains that defy following.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 5:08 AM

So your calling the view of a woman who fought for womens rights from world war 2 till the 90's mysogynist?

Cause thats the person I was quoting the opinion of. One shared by her daughter after her who fought for womens rights and shared by those before her who fought for womens rights. Generations of women who fought for their right to the highest levels of education, to reason, to careers. Who fought to make my country the second in the world to give women the vote.

Maybe you should explain why their view about what they saw as part of the way sexism works in society is in itself mysogyny.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 5:21 AM

Hmm... Considering the person quoted was a fighter for socialised medicine I wouldn't assume they have what your catagorising as 'logic of men'.

Wouldn't Reciprocal Ethics fit what you define as 'logic of women' as oppossed to say hedonism stoicism and the like?

If not what schools of Ethics would you catagorise as Logic of Women?

And are you suggesting that questioning ones feellings is 'male logic'? Because her point was that convincing women to go by feellings largely or partly constructed by unconciously absorbing sexist views/beliefs of what women are and what women are capable of left them easilly manipulated by men and contrained by men. Are you suggesting such unconcious absorbtion does not and did not take place?

and by your logic, I was also born with a vagina so my research, philosophy, theology claim equal validity. You do realize that is what you just did, right? You invoked this relatives birth sex to establish validity over me.

This is why I no longer respond to you. It doesn't matter that occasionally you make a good point because even a broken clock is right twice a day.

Enjoy this because I won't respond to you again.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 5:34 AM

I removed the assumption that i am male and my view is male from the equation.

It points out that its a conflict between one woman, you, whose valid claim to being a woman i do not doubt, and the views of other women. All feminists.

So saying their view as feminists was mysogynist is a big call and why it deserves understanding.

That doesnt invalidate you as a woman.

It'd be a logical fallacy, a form of argument from authority, to say that only the opinion of a ciswoman counts on whats mysogyny. Its not what i was trying to say and I repudiate that motion and apologise for not making that clear.

Note I asked why their view was wrong rather than saying because they were women it could not be wrong nor arguing their womanhood was more womanly than your own.

But i expected you'd presume that my view would automatically be mysogynistic hence my pointing out its credentials, not to invalidate yours but to take presumptions of mine being invalid out of the equation.

When an argument that seems to be a feminist one held by people who are and were feminists is called itself mysogynist its important to see WHY it's mysogynist, which of course it could well be.

Lets keep out the classical logical fallacies shall we? Unless they too count as mens logic?

bats, one last time I will not debate your relative through the filter of your unfathomable illogic. If she wishes to debate me, have her email me directly.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 7:39 AM

Calling logic 'unfathomable' does not make it so.

My Grandmother, journalist, newspaper editor, radio correspondant, poet, author, historian, activist, former head matron of Australias largest hosptial, one time member of the communist party and a great deal more passed away in the 90's.

But that doesn't mean that her ideas are dead. I asked a few simple questions. Nothing unfathomable.

1. Which schools of Ethics are 'womens logic' and which 'mens logic'? Particularly is Reciprocal Ethics womens or mens logic?

2. Is questioning ones feelings mens logic?

3. Is there unconcious absorbtion of sexist views that influence feellings and beliefs?

RB, you don't know me either.

I know the family you speak of as well. I also know countless other families who have gone through as bad or worse.

I never called you a monster.

No, no -- not even that much, Cathryn.

I did not call you a bigot. I called the behavior of those who share your exclusive view of true transsexuals involved in this particular conversation 'ugly' and I stand by that statement.

And for the record, you invoked your "status" as a non trans woman to invalidate my status as a woman. Those I disagree with for promoting trans victimhood with cisprivilege would call it that, I simply note it as your own unowned bigotry towards another woman that reveals any lip service you pay to my womanhood is words only, not a reflection of what is in your heart.

With rad fems who do this I simply ask "exactly how many years of living a woman's life is required to be a woman?" With many of them, I have lived as an adult woman longer than they have.

You remind me a great deal of my friend Voz (Nueva Voz) in this response.

So, I will tell you what I tell her when she gets up on one of her tears, lol

Ya missed a spot, and made a mess. Now clean it up.

I just went through and threw out a few comments. We won't tolerate personal attacks, and if you want me or Bil to look at something use the web contact form above.

Stay on topic, people. You may have all hated each other since you all met 15 years ago, but we don't want to hear about it.

Off topic huh .. couldnt just be that we were drowning ya'll out for a change, and ya'll needed to do damage control huh

Thats ok .. we have saved the pages .. wouldn't be surprised if some fundie out there don't find them very useful.

Well, in the end, true colors were shown. I'm fairly certain that all the sides will agree to that.

All five of them.

I've made my points, and asked my questions.

They remain unanswered.

I am likely responsible for the jump in attention from them, and for that I apologize to all and sundry.

This group -- this small, breakaway group from the mainline "HBS" segment, broken away because of similar issues of defining by narrative within it -- is particularly vindictive and notably absent of good faith.

They have an appeal to heterosexual transwomen, specifically, considering transmen transsexual only if they go forward with the bottoms and include a hysterectomy, and they have that appeal because they speak to normalcy.

TO ordinary, to the longing to just be like everyone else that transfolk struggle with not only before transition, but after transition as well.

They are not, individually, "bad people". They do some *really* bad things, but generally, this group of about 200 in total as a liberal estimate, represent a rough guess estimate of 3 to 5 percent of the total Transsexual population.

They are, for the most part, not out.

And, for my cisGLB colleagues, what this has a parallel too is the old Mattachine assimilationist ideal.

The days when the closet was the way to go. I know some here remember those days well, and others still deal with those in this situation.

I leave it to you to decide if you think that people with views such as this can genuinely contribute to he discussion here.

I'm not calling for their banning, mind you -- they all have differing degrees of ability to restrain their language, but their very basic precepts are based in shame, fear, and negativity.

Ask questions, and you will not get answers, you will get attacks or you will be ignored or they will evade them some other way.

Me, I'm just gonna keep on educating within my community.

Because with "family" like this, who needs opponents?

I’d like to relate a story of personal ugliness.

I went through medical transition a while ago. I started taking hormones sixteen years ago, started to "live full time” a year later, and had surgery a year after that. So, I’ve had a while to live with the personal demons that can plague a person after medical transition.

Even though I passed as a non-transgender woman with great ease, I still had this ugly little voice in the back of my head that whispered, “You look like a freak. You sound like a freak. You have the past of a freak. You’re ugly, awkward, and far too masculine to be a real woman.” I was my own worst critic and consequently, I endured the weight of self-hatred for many years.

The funny thing is, when I looked upon other trans people—trans women in particular—all of that self-doubt and all of those personal demons were projected upon my peers. I didn’t see other women who were struggling with the same issues I was. Most trans women appeared to be impostors to me. Deep down, in my gut, I saw a bunch of annoying men in dresses and garish makeup, pretending to be women. Not surprisingly, after I transitioned, I started to avoid transsexual women like the plague. They were little more than over-glorified crossdressers on hormones. Oh yeah, did I mention that crossdressers kind of freaked me out? They did.

During this time in my life, I suspect that I might have found common cause with the women on this thread who decry the association of transsexual and transgender. Ironically, I was so far gone in my personal demons, that I never had a chance to meet women of this persuasion. That would have required spending time in the presence of other transsexual women and that was far more than I could bear.

During these years, whenever I encountered another trans person, I'd paste on a smile, pretend that I wasn't a prejudiced fool, and quietly walk away. The faster I could put distance between myself and others of my kind, the better. If you have a personal weakness that leads to horribly stupid behaviors, what better way to avoid the issue than to avoid the focus of your stupidity?

When did this stop? It started to fade when I learned to accept that the voice in my mind that whispered ugly insults was not my own voice, but rather, the side effect of a lot of childhood abuse and the direct product of being raised in a prejudiced society. When I learned to listen to my heart and accept myself as the woman I am, the voice was quelled. Not surprisingly, the prejudice that I felt toward other transsexual women—and transgender people in general—began to fade.

You can only begin to accept the lives of others when you begin to accept your own. Those words may be trite, but they contain a wealth of truth.

You can take this story for what it’s worth. I’m just one person. However, it seems to me that it’s not uncommon for the people of any marginalized group to have to contend with the effects of self-hatred within its members. People can engage in stunningly negative behaviors toward their peers when they are plagued by these kinds of demons. Years of pain and misery can lead people into fairly toxic ways of being.

Healing can open so many doors and improve a person's life in countless ways. Unfortunately, it's all too easy to become lost in dysfunction because viewing others through the distorted lens of pain and misery can become as addictive as a drug.

My love goes out to you. Thank you for sharing this hard story.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 2:13 AM

This is one of the most important and useful links I've ever found. An article on Internalised oppression, it's effects on oppressed groups and most importantly on healing it.

Something I think every GLBT person could find useful in understanding others and themselves and in making the community and the world a better place.

That's one of the best essays I've seen on internalized oppression to date. Reading it reminded me of a few patterns that I need to explore in my life right now.

Thanks BBB.

If by progressive you mean "pushy", "condescending", and "abusive" then yes, this blog qualifies.

By the way, thanks for your "advice", I'm sure it will do us a world of good in dealing with men and others that push us around. What was that advice again? Oh yes, surrender.

So many women just love it when men tell us who we are, don't we sister?

No, by progressive they mean *inclusive* and forward thinking.

Being against inclusion, you wouldn't have an interest there, nor recognize such.

Interesting -- ya'll accuse me of twisting words or playing "word games" (Leigh's favorite), and yet here you are doing exactly that. Where did they say surrender to men?

Oh, wait, that's right -- you think all transgenders are men, and use transgender as a means of insulting and degendering someone. I have four different blogs where you've made that explicit, Aria.

Passive agressive much, Aria?

Yeah, that's harsh, I know.

But true.

I think it is possibly time after some 250 posts in this topic probably more since a few have been removed. (Strange the replies were not also removed even though they were equally offensive and personal attacks.)

No matter, the question asked and the title of the thread “Who are the Real Women” The question itself is pejorative since it implies that there are going to be “fakes” exposed during any debate. Not that much in the way of debate has taken place.

For proof of the “Classic Transsexual” position regards brain sex go too

During a few years of personal involvement in counselling I noted that one of many clear key indicators of genuine transsexuality based on sex identity rather then simply gender I noted many times that there was an acute and persistent loathing of genitalia that was present from quite an early age. In many cases this was confirmed through consultation with a parent. Other more experienced qualified clinicians also noted this phenomenon. Notably Who is of the opinion that there is such a thing as “neurological intersex” This opinion is shared by most if not all “Classic Transsexuals” through personal experience both prior to correction and demonstrated by lives lead post correction.

John Money’s theory of “Gender Identity” has been challenged by a great many great mind’s and much of his work discredited through the David Reimer case. John Money was exposed as a fraud when he failed to reveal that his “proof positive” case was shown to be a failure when David Reimer made his case public by filing a lawsuit in 2000 which he won. David was so traumatised he committed suicide. Wikipedia may not be the best or most authoritive source but it will lead the researcher to others.

GID has proved to be a controversial theory when applied to cases of “Intersex” where surgeons confident that nurture will prevail according to the theory operate on infants born with the various incarnations of intersex. When the child matures and the truth comes out GID is again applied much to the ire of all whose lives are touched by the intersex issue. What is done to these people is in my opinion a global medical disgrace. The source is GID So much of Money’s GID theory has been rejected I am surprised it is still applied. Though I suspect it’s life is limited and will almost certainly be removed by DSM V.

Transgender which is based around gender and not sex as the term tacitly implies, was originally used by Arnold Lowman to describe himself as a full time transvestite. The term originates with Magnus Hirschfield all the information you ever need on this Gay campaigner can be found here Hirschfield also coined the term transvestite. So it seems fair to say that at the source of transgender is a gay paradigm.

While classic transsexuals are quite comfortable with the existence of gay or lesbian classic transsexuals the prevalence is in line with society in general. It can not be considered a homosexual issue any more the various forms of intersex are.

I hope this goes some way to answering you questions.

Some notes:

First -- not bad.

1 - the brain development studies indicate a high probablity of such, but it is not uniform enough to be able to cast out as specific to all, and it happens to indicate that there is a high correlataion between transsexuals and other gender varinat folk.

You can determine that by studyng the samples used across the general set of studies involved. THey include d crossdressers, transvestites, and transsexuals of both sexes in differnet studies testing the general theory.

So its raely argued that this evidence isn't satisfactory for a physiological correlation. Indeed, in sum, it says that about the entire transgender spectrum.

2 - the so called "classic" transsexuals are not the only ones who suffer from that genital loathing. That's a general transsexual issue as a whole, including for people who are intentionally non-op (which is explicitly noted by Diamond, I should point out). I happen to be a strong proponenet of sex identity being used in favor over gender idnetity in general terminlogy (and am not alone if you reference the most recent IJT publication).

3 - It's not Money's Gender Identity theory that is criticized (indeed, he only contributed to it and most of the work came from other sources). It is his theory that its existence was formed in early childhood that has been consistently challenged and proven false -- not the gender identity hypothesis itself.

That is, Money was saying it was caused by how you were raised. That was the point the of the John/Joan case (Reimer).

So what was changed and challenged was not the notion of gender identity (which he, btw, called gender identity/role, and note was based in how other are expected to see one), but the notion of how it was formed.

Sorry, but its an important distinction and you misrepresented the work.

4 - The application of GIDNOS to IS folks is unrelated to the use of DSD as currently structured, and the horrifically cruel practice of involuntary infantaile assignment is an ongoing and separate issue.

5 - You are in for a rude awakening come the DSM-V -- it's not only still there, it's being reworked using a lot of the data you've discussed so far. And, again, GID, as described in the DSM and ICD, is NOT Money's idea nor his work.

6 - Again with the Arnold Lowman use. By the time that Prince was using the term, that was not the name, and thus you are speaking a falsehood that is disrespectful, unless you'd like to be referred to under your birth name as well.

I've already commented on the actual shift in the term's meaning.

Also, Hirshfield did not coin the word transvestite -- it has historical ue inthe same meaning long before he even was born. Also, remember that the conception of transsexual as it is today (inclusive of the distinctive varietals being discussed herein) is derived from his work, and he and Benjamin worked together for a while.

Had World War Two not been so bad for him, things may well have been significantly improved for us all today.

Note, as well, that it is not fair to say that transgender is a gay paradigm -- indeed, that's intellectually dishonest and downright decietful.

7 - No one other than the uninformed considers transsexualism (In any vareital) or even transgenderism as being a "homosexual issue". Or even a gay one.

The problem, of course, is the uninformed.

8 - As I said, not bad. Not bad at all.

The personal demons and that little voice. I knew it well. Mercifully it has gone from me too. But the years passing make all the difference. I'm glad you've finally found peace. Isn't that what we all crave?

...also in the spirit of getting along
(in spite of my FTM invisibility, which i now LOVE,LOL)thanks again phil reese for talking to and about the experiences of all of us, that is the only way people can learn.don't feel bad you did good, don't let 'em offend you.
take care.

ps hi monica hope you don't think of me as an a-hole for being in disagreement with you from are cool, i read your blog...

Your disagreement with me were still respectful, unlike others. I have no problems with you.

I have to say the last 10 comments or so emailed to me have been the MODEL of civil debate. Way to get our acts together! Please, keep it out of the personal attack realm and in the respectful. Good night.

It usually works that way, as well. After the big rush of personal attacks, the cooler heads come back in and it gets down to brass tacks.

One of the hardest things is actually sorta working out here right now, and that's allowing enough time and attention to get the entire "sides" thing talking to each other.

Its a lot of posturing and stuff, and there will continue to be flareups, but slowly at surely the two sides will begin to see a little bit more about each other -- and the good faith question will prove itself.

A huge amount of this is based in the interpersonal conflicts, but that's really secondary to the political aspects of the identity politics in play here.

AN excellent example of what I mean there is the use of the "but no one asked me" argument -- it ignores a fundamental aspect of identity politics, which is that the only people who will ascribe to an identity are those who fit it.

Of course they didn't get a letter asking them -- it's not an organized structure, is a collective movement that was formed by people who thought similarly getting together.

They don't understand that -- and the letter argument is an example of the kind of straw man that is used when people feel that a particular movement they are sensing an attachment to doesn't address their needs.

Once they feel like acting in good faith, there may actually be some movement.

But that is asking a lot of them.

And us, as well.

Even if they begin to act in good faith, their language and understanding of issues is narrowly focused and limited -- they mean something very different from their opponents when each side says transgender.

Those on "our" side need to be able to take some of those insults as they are delivered, and that's pretty hard to do when you are essentially being called an icky thing.

I've pointed out several times before that if one attends to the issues of transsexuals, one will solve a lot of the issues of the rest of the gender variant spectrum. Not all, but the most critical ones.

On the other hand, a few of them are excited in the mistaken notion that Gender expression "appears" to have been removed from the ENDA.

That they don't realize this is untrue is a whole 'nother ballgame.

did you read the last incarnation of ENDA...only gender identity and defined in such a mish mash manner that the courts will have a field day invalidating it for everyone, have total cover in denying coverage to butch lesbians. ENDA is worthless.

yes, I did.

That "mish mash" manner matches other bills already passed and uses gender expression as its definition.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 12:29 AM

So are you doing anything to fix that? You too have a human rights obligation to ensuring the equal rights of everyone! Not just those like you but everyone. Thats how reciprocal ethics works.

If however you stand passively by while others are not granted equality out of apathy or self-interest or actively oppose iot you lose any claim based on human rights yourself while that is so. That too is how reciprocal ethics works.

(Confucious and others 'Do Unto Others' principle is a good way of understanding Reciprocal Ethics for those unfamiliar with it)

And the later would invalidate all your claims for all you call for.

So which is it? Human rights including EVERYONE's right to self-identify and all related rights (see the Yogyakarta Principles if you need a crash-course) including gender expression rights or abdicate the whole kit and kaboodle?

Actually Dyss, I do go under my birth name and as written on my birth certificate to! Before you ask, no I am NOT going to explain that.

LOL -- no need to explain it -- I also go by my birth name as written on my birth certificate.

oh, and I should note, that is why my birth cert is readable on my blog.

That's no birth certificate. That's a Certificate of Live Birth!

This means you are really a Kenyan on a secret mission to infiltrate the LGBT community as part of the conspiracy to establish a Nazi-Communist dictatorship. With socialism, too.

You've exposed yourself - we're onto ya now.

*minor threadjack*
----monica, how do icomment on your blog?
i can't seem to get a signin page or anything----

(we return you now to your regularly scheduled programs...)

battybattybats, have we met? I don't think so, but I would enjoy doing so if our paths should cross. I like the way your mind works and your sense of equality and right and wrong et al.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 2:25 AM

I rarely get out of my regional area because of my disability so having met offline is unlikely unless you've been in New England Australia. And if you are ever in the area let me know.

But I've been very active online all over the place. You and anyone else here are welcome on my blog to discuss stuff or say hi.

Darn it doesn't seem likely, does it.

Well beyond that I was looking at the link you shared and it is brilliant. This excerpt is particularly helpful:

Internalized oppression occurs among members of the same cultural group. People in the same group believe (often unconsciously) the misinformation and stereotypes that society communicates about other members of their group. People turn the oppression on one another, instead of addressing larger problems in society. The results are that people treat one another in ways that are less than fully respectful. Often people from the same cultural group hurt, undermine, criticize, mistrust, fight with, or isolate themselves from one another.

It really helps me to understand so much of what I have seen in the GLB and particularly the T community. Thank you very much. This has made bearing witness to the mud slinging worth the experience.

You see Dyss now there you go again.

You are saying that you get upset when you believe you've been called names you don't like but seem to think it is ok in fact your right, to accuse others of things that they are not displaying. Such as homphobia, bigotry, transphobia.

What seems to escape everyone in this farce is the fact that transsexual has been dragged into an umbrella term it has no affinity with either factually philosophically or medically. Twenty five years ago there really was only transsexual. The term adopted by Harry Benjamin. Who was aware of Hirschfield and was friendly with him. He used the term transsexual because he wished to separate the conditions he was encountering in his consulting rooms. The same as I did. This information is in the second edition of "The Transsexual Phenomenum."

It was not until Prince used Transgender for those like himself (I use the pronoun for Prince as he used it when I met him) that things changed. Prince set out to wipe transsexual off the face of the earth and replace it with transgender for no other reason than he was refused treatment by Benjamin. Although later in life he did accept that there was a medical case for SRS for a very few. Those very few are "Classic Transsexuals" and that is a term similar to Benjamin's "primary transsexual." Again read Benjamin's book.

Now you may say all this is old stuff and that in 21st centuary we know better. But we don't do we? Because here we are three generations of "Classic Transsexuals" debating the exact same points with you all now.
So let me spell this all out clearly once again.

We and I know most of the women who have posted here and so it is they who I am speaking for and others whom I know do hold this view so I say "we" on that basis, we are frossly insulted when we see transsexual listed as a "transgender" condition.It is demeaning and saying that we have no choice is simply not acceptable. That removal of choice is in itself bigotry. We are simply insisting that we are more than capable of lobbying for and speaking for our own position and need no assitance in that regard. I think this exchange proves that point.

Yes our definition of "Classic Transsexual" is narrow medical definitions often are narrow. If someone falls outside that definition then it is surely up to them to understand their own condition and accept that, deal with it. Classic transsexual is no picnic! It is life threatening in every sense of the word.Looking the way I do I had a lifetime of being called names, names that today are not acceptable unless the person actually identifies that way. I don't identify transgender so calling me that is not any different to being called the names I was as a child. As an adult I do not have to endure it and will not. Here on this blog, are people who do that. So this is one of the many places we visit and ask that you stop. For that we are accused of bigotry and hate and transphobia.

Catkisser has explained extremely well exactly why being labelled "transgender" has damaged our identity but she too is labelled homophobic. I find that amusing when it is well known that Cathryn is Lesbian. She's also someone I respect.

The result of the kind of gender politics displayed here has resulted in Jasper Gregory yet on this very blog all the protatgonists here put as much distance between Jasper and yourselves as you could. Don't bother denying that because we have that page saved too, we know who you are.

So, pleas cease calling us names, like transgender, bigot, homophobe, transphobe etc. and perhaps more meaningful dialogue can begin. Though frankly I'd rather get back to my professional work and looking after my husband. Something that gives me a great deal of pleasure.

Well now Evangelina, that's just it -- if you weren't displayig such traits, I would say it.

Try it sometime. Really.

The point you say is escaping everyone is, in fact, not true.

THere is an affinity.

And 25 years ago there were still three types of transsexual and three types of transvestite. All on a specturm *organized my Benjamin himself*. Years before.

I know, that's hard to believe that such was the rule in 1984, but there ya go.

So please, try to stay factual, if you don't mind.

Bevause sying there's no factual or medical affnity is a lie.

Thank you, however, for correctng your use of name. I may not have liked the person very much, but there's no cause to be that rude.

There were two forms of primary transsexual in Benjamin's book. Would you like the page numbers?

So what we really have are three generations of transsexuals who have no clue what they are talking about.

The flaw in your point is that I am a primary transsexual. And I am opposed to removing transsexual from beneath the umbrella. BEcause it was placed there by the same transsexual who took the term Prince coined and repurposed it.

You were aware of that, right?

So how do you propose to achieve that?

Your definition of classic transsexual is *narrower* than the medical defiition, and with no basis in current science -- nor previous, in fact.

I don't have a problem wiht how you identify -- but I will use adjectives to describe you when possible -- accurately even.

Here, on this blog, they are not speaking to you except when you are here -- they are quite content to let you speak to the issue on your own, while they speak for those who do not have a problem with it.

That's not why you are accused of bigotry and hate and transphobia, though, and saying that is deceptive falsehood.

You are accusd of such because the manner in which you do so also happens to demean those, such as myself, who disagree with you and are, indeed, still transsexuals, and even classically so.

Stop doing that, and you won't run into the issue.

And not just here. At your blogs as well, and in those forums. Because some of us read them and know what you are really thinking.

Cathryn (catkisser, Radical Bitch) has also lied through her teeth in the same way you have here.

And, again, she wasn't labeled such for that. Oh, and she's Bisexual, btw, which she notes here in this very thread.

Surprisingly common among transfolk, oddly enough.

Jasper is a unique individual, and I've not placed as much distance as I could -- indeed, I've gone so far as to comment on his blog. Which he even approved (though that was a bit of a surprise to me). SO a saved page is going to merely affirm my approach and sentiments (especially since they are right there on my own blog, a forum thread, and his blog, among other places).

Lastly, transgender, bigot, homophobe, transphobe, etc are adjectives. Transgender is not an insult. It is not an identity being foisted on you because identity cannot be foisted on anyone.

Bigot can be used insultingly, and may have been thusly, but not by me -- if you weren't being a bigot, you wouldn't be called one.

The same with the rest.

The dialog has already begun, as well. This is it.

Where it goes from here is up to all of us.

If there are no lies, I won't call them as such, If there is no bigotry displayed or similar issues, I won't note it as such. I'm exceedingly clear and consistent on that point.

That doesn't mean you have to agree with me or anyone else here, either.

But it does mean that you will treat us with the courtesy you would like in return, first.

And you will find, then, that I, for one, will grant you the same courtesy.

What you have displayed here Dyss, is that are you completely abusive and lacking in any kind of empathy, or even a modicum of class.

Further, you either misunderstand Benjamin's work or are being dishonest about it. Benjamin himself noted that the dividing line was surgery, and the all-consuming need to fix the body *to the maximum extent possible*.

From The Transsexual Phenomenon:

"True transsexuals feel that they belong to the other sex, they want to be and function as members of the opposite sex, not only to appear as such. For them, their sex organs, the primary (testes) as well as the secondary (penis and others) are disgusting deformities that must be changed by the surgeon’s knife.

This attitude appears to be the chief differential diagnostic point between the two syndromes (sets of symptoms) - that is, those of transvestism and transsexualism.

The transvestite (TV) usually wants to be left alone. He requests nothing from the medical profession, unless he wants a psychiatrist to try to cure him. The transsexual (TS), however, puts all his faith and future into the hands of the doctor, particularly the surgeon."

What makes you think that I am *completely* abusive?

On what basis do make that assessment?

Where do you find your relevant coparatives to state I have no class?

On what basis do you declare me without empathy?

Didn't Benjamin also use that same distinction to differentiate the two categories which he called "true transsexuals" (which I am, btw) from the group he just called transsexuals?

Wasn't it after that section that he described "transsexuals" (later marked as type IV in his table therein)?

Wasn't also the point of hormones being of treatment value that he noted in that book (notably in his discussion of the sex scale, wherein he explicitly notes there is a degree of correlation between the six types)?

And are not those the single point of differentiation between type one to three and types four to six?

Pretty sure that's the case.

So before you tell me I misinterpret him, ought you do more than specificaly exclude portions not revleant to your argument, since, fairness and wisdom dictates you would include and acknowledge all of that?

I will thank you, however -- my bookmark for the downloadable's been missing. It was of great help below:

And, since you resorted to it, a few choice quotes:

"According to the dictionary, sex is synonymous with gender. But, in actuality, this is not true."

"Instead of the conventional two sexes with their anatomical differences, there may be up to ten or more separate concepts and manifestations of sex and each could be of vital importance to the individual."

"Many psychiatrists, and especially psychoanalysts, ascribe to early childhood conditioning in an environment unfavorable for a normal healthy development the plight of such patients, who feel that their minds and their souls are "trapped" in the wrong bodies."

"The most striking among these sex-split personalities are the transsexuals. Their problems are intertwined with those of transvestites and also of homosexuals, as we will see in later chapters."

"Most writers on the subject refer to transvestism as a sexual deviation, sometimes as a perversion. It is not necessarily either one. It also can be a result of "gender discomfort" and provide a purely emotional
relief and enjoyment without conscious sexual stimulation, this usually occurring only in later life."

"Others are most attracted to going out "dressed" in order to be accepted as women in
public by strangers. They may invite discovery and arrest, but this danger is an additional attraction for some of them. Others may live completely as women, their true status sometimes discovered only after death."

"Yet, an extra chapter on TVism with further characterizations will have to be inserted in order to let the picture of transsexualism emerge more clearly."

Hmm, sounds like there's something there to me...

why yes, there is!

"The relationship between transvestism (TVism) and transsexualism (TSism) deserves further scrutiny and reflection. Both can be considered symptoms or syndromes of the same underlying psychopathological condition, that of a sex or gender role disorientation and indecision. Transvestism is the minor though the more frequent, transsexualism the much more serious although rarer disorder."


Still want to say theres no relationship, or will I go further?

oh, and look here! :D :D

Group 1
Type I
Pseudo TV
Type II
Fetishistic TV
Type III
True TV
Group 2
Type IV
TS, Nonsurgical
Group 3
Type V
TS, Moderate intensity
Type VI
TS, High intensity

Hmmm. Three types of TS. Three types of TV.

Organized into 3 groups.

That *moderate intensity* group? Includes some people who may not benefit from surgery. Otherwise, they are identical to that high intensity group.

And note that nonsurgical TS part. Wow.

Pretty freaking shocking, huh?

Who'd have thunk a transsexual could exist without surgery willingly. Wow. Really incredible.

All three still transsexuals.

Sorry Aria -- A person we both know is likely to not be my friend anymore over all of this, and I need the humor to lighten my mood.

I envy you that.

But that doesn't mean that even though I'd buy you a cup of coffee could you stand to sit down with me, I won't still go after stuff like this.

I get a lot of flack for saying "read this" and "read that" and not really explaining why.

well, Aria, the reason why is that in the end, I don't care if you don't like the icky people. In the end, all I care about is that you base your arguments in the history and the science and stop saying how you want it to be as if that's the way it is.

I get that you want to change stuff -- I really do. I may not agree with you on why, and I may end up fighting you over it.

But just as I reamed Monica a few weeks back here for her stuff on "disclosure", and in the same way that I even defended Cathryn here (and other places, at other times that she overlooks because she doesn't like me), I still gave her hell.

Yeah, in part, probably because I like to.

But mostly because a lot of the stuff you say isn't accurate, isn't truthful, isn't fully open.

As I discovered tonight, there are major failures to communicate -- different understandings of terms and ideas and one of the things that no one is doing is questioning those very basic simple stuff and when a few people do suddenly they are playing word games or engaging in psychobabble.

On both sides.

I'm not looking to "make a peace" -- I'm looking to make sure that when we have these arguments we do it in a manner that is open, honest, and direct, and *maybe* we can get to a point whee what one side says isn't immediately an insult to the other side.

Because that's the way it is, right now, Aria. You say transgender and sneer and that offends us, too. For your points to be heard you have to get past the language issue, foremost.

Otherwise you'll always just be the "evil transsexual menace" to the "evil transgender empire" and in my little selfish way, maybe I won't have to be the "evil anti-classic transsexual menace that eats whole threads" anymore.

I know you don't really care. But I do.

And the sad part is I'm starting not to anymore.

307 comments while still on the front page, a record perhaps?

And yet nothing essential has changed.

Classic transsexuals say we are different, you reply "you are a bigot"

We ask you stop defining us with your terms and colonizing ours and the response is "you are a self loathing bigot with internalized transphobia". "We will let you go but we won't really ever do so just pretend we did and resume immediately defining you, speaking for you."

Some of you respond with liar liar liar. When that is exposed as projection, no apologies are forthcoming.

I've fought colonization of transsexuality for over a decade now. Same with the use of "transgender" as an umbrella term. I'm told I am not allowed to find that term applied to myself as offensive because that makes me a bigot. Then I'm told I cannot use the term tranny even though it has a long playful part in transsexual history because it offends someone else. My being deeply offended is simply self loathing because I must be identical to a crossdresser, after all they are just like me only didn't need to transition, fix their body, live an actual woman's life. Why? because they say so.

No parity, no peace.

I believe this pretty much sums up 307 comments.

to recap: I'm a self loathing, internalized transphobic bigot and hater who used to be on the side of good but somehow went bad. I'll never be a "real woman" so any "real woman's" opinion can be used to trump mine. This is what I take away from all this.

Conversations with rad fems are much more productive, go figure. Fewer insults, much much much more actual common ground........and eventual actual respect of me as a woman. Actual respect, not lip service designed to shut me up.

And here we have more lies from you.

You do not merely say you are different, Cathryn. That's a bald faced lie and extremely cowardly.

You say that you are different from all those other people, AND that anyone who differs from you is one of those other people; even people who are the same as you but hold differing views or differing life experiences.

You say that You are the authority on what is and what isn't X, and *that* is why you are called a bigot.

We have told you time and time again, you can go off and define yourself however you choose, and we are fine with it.

It's when you define us that we get all "uppity" with you. Because it is in the defining of us -- in your words and methods, that we can see that you do so out of such self loathing.

So that's another lie you tell.

You want the "some of us" -- which, let's face facts, is predominantly me, and you and I both know we are equally bitchy -- to stop calling you a liar, well you have two choices:

1 - Prove you aren't to the satisfaction of most folks

2 - stop lying.

Take your pick.

You've fought a ghost then -- there has been no colonization, only your own emotional state of mind.

You can find it offensive, Catherine -- but be aware that it can be correctly applied to you, and there's nothing that any of us can do about that right now -- write the MSM and the writers of the media guides if you want to change that. IT's more than merely an identity, more than merely a political tool. It is a noun and an adjective within the language of more people than merely the trans community.

I've come to dislike the term myself, and do not find that it is an effective identity -- but then, I've given identity up, and mostly because ya'll have helped to show me the weaknesses inherent in it.

Tranny is offensive to not merely a few folks -- even with in the community, and it's changed dramatically from just a few years ago -- don't whine that times change while we stand still.

I still call myself a tranny. But apply it to, say, ATG, and she'll have your heart on a plate with extra tabasco.

The only one saying you are identical to a crossdresser, Cathryn, is *you*. Which, if you had done a bit more effort in keeping up on your CE's would have told you lot's about your state of mind.

Your recap is fairly accurate to a point -- but hey, obviously it's always the worst possible result with you. After all, as you do elsewhere and Leigh's done here, my ASD is what pouts me on the same scale as the local mass murderer and, in your eyes, eliminates any validity to my words.

The fact that the major executives of the world's companies today also have it is irrelevant.

So your take away is of your own building, and doesn't accurately reflect the facts of the matter, but rather your own preconceptions on it.

And if you think arguing with radfems is more productive, go on and have at the AROOO gals.

You've got a lot in common.

You want respect -- I have a great deal of it for you, and haven't been reticent in pointing that out. But respect does not stop me from calling you out when you engage in such stuff as is here.

Indeed, I'm probably one of the few who opposes you so strongly herein that actually has any respect for you.

And unlike all of your allies who have posted here save one, I've not misgendered any of you. You have always all been women to me.

And yet, I can go to only two different blogs -- one of them my own -- and my own email to find many instances of ya'll doing such to me, and others.

And that's not even getting into Jennifer.

I wouldn't even care, either, if ya just observed some basic truths.

But then, I am reminded that in the eyes of your cohorts, I can't handle the truth -- indeed, you even said as much yourself in the whole secret stealth cabal of test havers.

So from one lone gal supporting a dying religion to another gal who's trying to get one reborn:

Have a great life.

About Questions

I am, henceforth, going to use questions as my primary means of ascertaining information.

Questions are powerful -- they provide a reality check without having to engage in the constant bickering interplay.

Questions, however, require answers.

Since I would like some, I will be open to answering any -- and I will indeed answer questions, but I may sometimes have to clarify a few points first.

Anyone willing to do the same?

At what point does your continued calling me a liar become a TOS violation?

and why on earth would I "debate" someone who's only tool in the tool box is continued baiting bordering on abuse?

I don't know.

Why would you?

Since I'm not actively baiting you (that's an entirely different set of tools, Cathryn, and I don't generally use them here), it's not me you are talking about.

As to why you would debate me, it's because I will, indeed, prove a challenge, and yet if you can move me, you can likely move anyone.

At the point I call you such and you *don't* lie.

Ok this is it for me so those of you interested in further insults and baiting can save the bandwidth.

I have a full day's worth of work to do here, won't be back to the computer until long after this scrolls off the front page and when that happens only Dyss and Bats continue on and on and on and since I have zero interest in anything either of them has to say, I won't bother to check this thread again.

~Evangelina, I want to thank you for sharing those articles with us. I was able to read the three of them, and I am not sure what the Google Timeline is for, but I will now definitely have to look deeper into Magnus Hirschfeld. Thanks

Now, I've read every post on this thread, and its occupied my life for far too long. I've received plenty of 'feedback' from this, and I went into this trying to allow for folk to have intelligent debate, and thus far, Evangelina is the only person on this thread who has shared scholarly work with us. The rest of this has been screaming at one another. I'm a little sick of it. This is how I understand it. I can not comment on the issue because I am a gay man, and am not allowed an opinion...

Just as men are never allowed in Women's Studies Programs, Caucasians not allowed in African American Literature classes, and Christians are never allowed in synagogues.

Cisgender women can not comment on the issues because they are privileged...

Just like all straight people are homophobic.

Most of us are, apparently, too mentally unhinged to have any authority anywhere.

Self-Identified transgender men and women can't comment because they are colonizing... something... even though they don't call themselves 'transsexual' nor do they have a problem with those who want to defining themselves outside of the transgender umbrella.

Transsexual-identified men and women CAN comment... unless they are not "Classic Transsexual..." a term I searched in the University of Illinois' journals databases for a while last night and found nothing in scientific or medical journals, but hits in social science and humanities journals... talking about this very debate...

The definition of "Classical transsexual" seems to be--from my perspective--anyone who has been diagnosed with GID who would have been called a 'homosexual transsexual' in the DSM-III who has transitioned, and who does not disagree with the other "Classical transsexual."

Only "Classic transsexuals" have any sort of authority to comment in this debate at all, and--strangely enough--they all happen to agree!

So there have been five people total on this board who have any sort of authority to comment on this 'debate' (definitely not including myself), anyone else commenting is colonizing, appropriating, assimilating, throwing their privilege around, being a misogynist, harassing, lying, cheating, stealing, murdering, enslaving and generally causing a nuisance.

And what IS this debate?

I'm lost completely about what is actually being debated here anymore. I think most people that are not "Classic Transsexuals" (and I'm not trying to use scare quotes here, its just that there are Transsexuals and then there are Classic Transsexuals and since I am speaking about both, I'm using quotes to differentiate) have agreed that:

*Sex and gender are two different things. This is very true.

*Folk who want to be left out of the discussion and live normal lives identifying as the gender they have transitioned to is their business and it is totally fine.

*Transsexual, Transgender, Transvestite or Cross Dresser, or Intersex are ALL DIFFERENT categories that mean different things in different arenas, and no one is trying to take away from the experience of the surgery-tracked or post-operative Transsexual in any way.

*Transsexual is a medical/scientific term that has definitions in the DSM and in medical and scientific journals at the disposal of ANYONE with a library card ANYWHERE (in the US).

*Noone gets to speak for the entire Transgender community, just as noone should speak for the entire Transsexual community, so if anyone IS telling you that you are not allowed to identify as you choose, they aren't speaking for EVERYONE.

So what is being argued here?

I'm very confused, but it seems to me this is a matter of "Classic Transsexuals" being offended by the cavalier use of the medical term 'Transsexual' by folk who not only aren't diagnosed as such, but have no intention of doing so.

On this I concede the point to the "Classic transsexuals." Someone who is not Transsexual can not co-op the term, unless they have an intention of receiving the diagnosis when the opportunity presents itself. I can SAY that I'm OCD casually because I get very 'particular' about the way that certain things in my life are organized. But I've actually never been diagnosed as OCD, nor is it particularly important for me to GET such a diagnosis. I HAVE, however, BEEN diagnosed with ADD (which no longer exists, which is a little weird, so I guess I either have ADHD or nothing now) so if someone says "Oh, I'm feelin a little ADD today," and I bristle a bit, I do sort of understand where the "Classic transsexuals" are coming from.

That is not to say that I correct someone when they say that.

However, Transsexual has a political aspect that ADD does not share--there's the difference.

Transgender is MORE of a political term THAN a scientific term, though it does have its place in scientific literature. People are not diagnosed Transgender, though.

Now here's where I disagree with the "Classic Transsexuals."

Self-identification is VITAL for one to be validated as a human being. Someone who was born a woman but self-identifies as a man MUST be acknowledged as such, for the sake of their very humanity. I was born a man and I identify a man, but I've been identified by others as 'not a man' before. In doing so, they took away my humanity--not because being a woman is not being a human, but because when you refuse to recognize someone's self-identified gender, you ungender them completely, essentially 'beastialize' them.

So, since Dyssonance self-identifies as a woman, presents as a woman, lives as a woman, it is vital to recognizing her as a human being that the rest of us recognize her as a woman regardless as to whether or not she is surgery tracked. If she is not a woman, than she is not a human socially/politically. That's wrong. That justifies all sorts of horrible dehumanizing actions.

Likewise, "Classic Transsexuals" have the right to self-identify, and self identify their way right out of the "Transgender Umbrella." However, as stated above, noone speaks for ALL transsexuals or ALL transgender people. There are real, diagnosed Transsexuals on THIS THREAD who have said that they consider themselves Transgender--almost as many as say they abhor the idea. They should not also be including you if you wish not to be associated with the label, yet you DON'T have the power to say NO Transsexual is also Transgender. Only that YOU are not Transgender.

Because ONE Transsexual identifies as Transgender does not follow that ALL must. These are separate labels for separate fields--one much more scientific, and one much more political. When someone Transsexual identifies as Transgender it does not in any way shape or form affect your own identity. Your identity is your own.

The term "Classic Transsexual" seems to have been invented to separate Transsexuals who don't want to associate with the Transgender umbrella from those who do. I guess that's fine. However, its not a medical term. "Classic Transsexual" is a political term, like Transgender. I don't know, maybe there's medical research out there that has turned it into a medical term... I'm not seeing it in the WIDE array of medical journals available to us at the University of Illinois, which means it must not be widely accepted as a medical term. Not saying then that the science isn't valid... I'm just saying noone with authority has backed it up, and therefore it is not available to me to check out. Sorry. I can only read scholarly work I have access to.

I completely disagree that I have no interest in this debate at all and that my presence here should be offensive to everyone just because I am not transgender. I understand the concept of privilege very well, thank you. I understand I can not see life through your eyes. Just like I understand my male privilege and my white privilege. What privilege means is NOT that I can't be part of the conversation, what privilege means is that I must acknowledge my shortcomings in perspective, and seek to learn more.

Its loony to say, 'get out of here, this is trans talk, no cis allowed!' How will I ever learn anything? You expect me to take what I'm told at face value without partaking in the process of investigation and discovery? That's anti-intellectual if I've ever heard anything! I'm not qualified to speak for African Americans, but I can definitely learn and weigh in on the conversations happening around race. A heterosexual is not barred from learning about and debating GLB issues. Guess what, we got a heterosexual MINORING in LGBT Studies here at the U of I! Should we throw her out because they'll never know the actual experience? I think that she'll probably end up knowing more about what the gay experience is for a lot of gays and lesbians than I do, and I support that. We need STRONG allies.

What are the terms being debated here? Frankly to ask that Transgender people not include Transsexual under the Transgender umbrella when many diagnosed Transsexuals identify as Transgender is completely unreasonable. Maybe we can all start saying "some transsexuals" or "many transsexuals," instead of all. I'd support that. But its not reasonable to discount the view points of the transsexuals that WANT to be under that umbrella.

Should folks who have not been diagnosed as transsexual be barred from identifying as such? Depends. What are their reasons for not being diagnosed? Because they don't want to be? Well then sure, you have a point. Because they can't? Well, then you're going to have to give them a little leeway.

When I was uninsured, I began to experience the symptoms of a peptic ulcer--I mean I was puking up blood almost every day. Not being insured, however, I could not get diagnosed and treated without going into bankruptcy (I have SPARKLING credit, I gotta keep that shit clean for when I go to get my own little bungalow someday). I researched alternative medicine and homeopathic treatments for peptic ulcers. Learned all about the h-pillori bacterium that causes it. Spoke to nutritionists and alternative medicine experts for free and got suggestions, and I created a regiment for myself to reduce the size of the ulcer and control it until I got a job and became insured. The symptoms disappeared after about 7 months.

Did I have an ulcer? All signs pointed to yes. However, I was never diagnosed. I tell people this when I mention my ulcer experience--"I was never diagnosed, but I had all the symptoms and all of the homeopathic treatments FOR ULCERS eventually took care of it..." For all intents and purposes, I really KNEW that I had an ulcer. The diagnosis would have just confirmed it. Just like when I get a cold, I KNOW I have a cold. The diagnosis will just confirm it.

Being Transsexual is not having a cold or getting an ulcer, but it is a medical condition and its one that you're pretty sure you have BEFORE the diagnosis, and one that the diagnosis merely confirms. How many people are SURPRISED by an UNEXPECTED diagnosis of GID?

"I went into the doctor for a fever... it turns out I had GID."

Not often, I'm sure. Maybe folk who never ever had any exposure to it or considered it as a possibility, who go to seek help for undefined psychological distress, but I'm sure that's REALLY rare. Everyone I've known with GID or known OF with GID KNEW since they were a kid. Even the scientific literature backs this up.

So have a little leeway and have a little good faith and some compassion.

That was a really great wrap-up, Phil. Thank you.

Thanks too for sticking you neck out on this issue.

It's a nice try, and go ahead and comment. But don't expect that your opinion carries more weight than those of the minority group you write about.

What is Dysphoric Imperative?

This is the one thing that actually defines a transsexual. After years of observation and literally thousands of hours of discussion with some of the best minds in psychiatry I've come to some conclusions about it.

It tends to hit individuals in ten to fifteen year intervals who are "classic transsexuals". Each occurrence requires some sort of accommodation. That accommodation varies from individual to individual at each stage. Those who accommodate it by non-op transition have not escaped it, only put off the final crisis. In this stage they might think they have beaten it, they haven't. Each occurrence requires a greater accommodation to get through it.

Thus, many classic transsexuals identify as non-ops for a time. The thing to understand is this...for a classic transsexual, a female neurology will always eventually reject a male anatomy.

Half these ridiculous gender wars are because this simple fact is not understood.

This is also why I also often point out that those who have not finished the journey, do not have full understanding of it. This should be self evident.

So...non-ops, eventually you might literally be cutting your own throat when you keep saying "I'm a transsexual and I don't need surgery" because if you are, and I suspect many of you are, eventually you will need it.

Lunatics abound on both sides of this issue. Phil thinks I hate him because he's a man and cannot hold an opinion on this. That is mistaken, I question him because he will never know dysphoric imperative and frankly, no one who has not experienced will ever understand it.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 29, 2009 12:59 PM

Now consider this hypothetical.

IF as other neurological variations like Autism suggest we should exoect and going by things on Zoe's blog one or more scientists studying TS predict, there are degrees of the neurological intersex phenomenon THEN how would that fit into your definitions and model? What symptoms would we expect to see from degrees of this?

What would someone with partial neurological intersex be like? Like a non-classical transsexual?

Would someone with a mild degree, or having it centred in a different brain region be like genderqueer people or crossdressers?

And what do you say to the neurological evidence that says gays and lesbians have cross-sex neurology but in different brain areas to transsexuals?

Are there studies on zoe's blog that you havent totally factored into your understanding of this phenomena?

I was so uncomfortable with my body that I remained a virgin until after I had SRS. Heck, I didn't even date until after SRS. I had surgery when I was 25. How many people wait until after their twenty-fifth birthday to date or have sex?

Dysphoric imperative? Yes, I experienced that.

Even so, I'm more than happy to join together with non-transsexual people to struggle for the right to live our lives unmolested by the prejudices of those who would happily do away with the lot of us. I embrace the moniker of transgender without the least hesitation because I value the notion of forming a coalition with a great diversity of people and sharing in a common struggle.

Many transsexual men and women share a similar perspective with me... as do many non-transsexual folk. That's something that you are just going to have to live with. There are men and women who know and understand transsexuality as deeply as you do and yet, they have chosen to embrace a common struggle with people whom you wish to remain politically and communally isolated from.

If you do not wish to join us, then do not do so. If you do not wish to work with a diverse group of people and think that such action is the heart of folly, then do not participate. It's as simple as that. We don't expect you to join. Go on your life's way, seek like-minded souls, and do what you think is right.

Absolutely, we are doing what we think is right. And it happens to be resisting people like you who want to play this issue into something it is not.

Right, sister?

Let's take this in a more positive direction before this thread dies

I am a real woman. Married, then divorced, now out Lesbian, member of Heterodoxy in NY and Anadrynes in Paris... Author of some feminist pieces....survivor of the Laundries where I paid the price for being an advocate for women's dignity and freedom....lover and wife of a woman...mother of children....supplier of necessaries to the cats who live with me...

I am a real woman.

No one gets to decide who I am or what I am. I answer to no one else's definition of sex, gender, orientation....I am a real woman, I say so, I will not even answer anyone who challenges me upon that for I know who I am and it fills my spirit and my heart.

Who will join me in this, who will support this proclamation of the truth of self?

*raises a hand.*

I like this idea.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 30, 2009 12:19 AM

I am a bigender, genderqueer, crossdresser. I'm Transgender.

I do not claim to be a woman or a man exclusively.

I do not claim to be transsexual. Nor do I claim everyone who is transgender is like me either. Nor do i claim that of everyone wh is transsexual.

I'm in a loving relationship with someone who is also like myself though whose birth genital anatomy is the opposite of mine, and thats totally incidental to why we are together. We are together because we love each other.

I'm accepted by my friends. My family. Even though for some its been a slow road for them. Heck the other day I came out on a miniature wargaming forum and was accepted, and found there was another transgender person there too. More and more peoples reactions are 'oh cool'. Or from many ciswomen lately 'I think transgender people are hot'.

I am a human being. With all the consequential human rights. None of which require me to fit other peoples classification of being a man or a woman.

I claim that I am a woman, yet at times I can also claim that I am a man.
I equally balance masculinity and femininity. I was born with female genitals and a totally female body, yet sometimes I will shop for feminine-made clothing and feel nervous, like a man shopping to crossdress.

I feel my body is right, I feel my brain matches it... I just don't ALWAYS feel like a woman. But I'm happy, I've found peace with switching between genders.

I learned from a very early age that gender as we know it is an illusion, and that there is NO such thing as a clear cut, defined gender identity other than the one a person knows for themself.

Batty and I are together and as she said, not because of our genitals. Though that is fun =P
We love each other's personalities deeply and we just click perfectly into place with one another.

Love is what we need more of in the world, we need more of loving ourselves for who and what we are, and sharing that outwardly with others.

Dyss, as a clinician if you were in my office now; and I can gauge a lot of this from that video you are so proud of, I do not believe I would be making a diagnosis like primary transsexual. I'd need to see you of course; still it probably is a good idea you are not a patient I don't believe we'd get along.

Transgender is a noun not an adjective and nouns are often used as means of derision. To me being called transgender is just that and I don't accept that I have to endure it. But noun or adjective I will not endure it.

Your replies are always a series of assertions and rarely if ever contain properly researched or referenced supported facts. One case in point is the reference to Benjamin. What Dr Benjamin did was to collate into groups what he saw as similarities in patients. There were two groups of transsexuals primary and secondary as he called them. The other groups he classifies as transvestite of varying intensity. His observations at the time on what was really quite a small number of patients were such that he found it difficult too draw rigid distinction between the groups and stated that there may be overlaps. Influenced by Kinsey whose services as a researcher he often availed himself, he drew up scales. Quite a different concept to a spectrum with transvestite at one end and transsexual at the other.

Dr. Benjamin states in his book that he suspects a medical causation of transsexual and asks for greater research. The research results of Swaab may very well be the cause he suspected, along with 300 or more pieces of research. Yet more confirming work needs to be done. However the collated research of these is looking quite conclusive.

I am glad you read my blog Dyss, because will know that I am determined to defend my own identity as a classic transsexual. Primary transsexual if preferred. That was and is a medical diagnosis from about six different physicians. Not that is anyone’s concern but mine. As for bigotry you will find none on my blog. I am however very precise about what does and does not constitute transsexual. If holding to a truth and not allowing myself to be swayed from what I believe is truth is bigotry, then so be it. It’s still truth. I’m not going to lie for the convenience of others.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 30, 2009 9:53 AM

Dyssonance gives direct quotes to back her point. Could you do the same for your own?

An etext link to specific pages would be ideal if possible from each side.

Holding to a personal belief as truth irrespective of evidence is fine in (some) theology, but useless in science and is totally unethical as the basis of a judgement of other people.

Refusing to reassess what you believe to be true and ignoring new evidence and new reasoning because it opposes what you have already decided on isn't bigotry as such (though often may result in it, e.g. the belief in the inherant superiority of white males etc) but it is definately willfull ignorance.

If what you believed was true yesterday is actually true today then it will survive the new data and new arguments intact without needing to be protected by dismissing them or brushing them under the carpet or blanketly refusing to take a second lopk.

read the book bats, it's available online.....

So's the SoC V6 -- with V7 due out next year...

battybattybats battybattybats | October 1, 2009 12:02 AM

And even in highschool making an argument based on a source with no quotes and no page references was considered poor work and usually FAIL territory.

And is easilly a much weaker argument than one that DOES mention specific quotes and easilly checked references.

So for everyone reading this now and in the future, FTW, try finding some quotes that specifically trump Dyssonances or discredit hers.

Cause 'go read the book' is full of total fail when we've already had a host of quotes full of win from the book.. unless you claim they are not accurate quotes? Hence why page numbers are so useful for checking whose argument is right and whose full of hot air related to the book.

in fairness -- we are not in class, and our writings are not being graded on a scale or even pass/fail.

I tend to provide such stuff when I write actual posts, but not so much in the comments or general discourse until such time as the name calling and such ceases.

I do agree with you, mind you -- I've asked for exactly that: find stuff that disproves me, as I've generally been using logic against them.

And, as I told Aria, my purpose here is not so much to defeat their arguments, as to point out inconsistencies, outright lies and misrepresentations, and opinion masquerading as truth.

And, admittedly, there has been some vengeance for attacks made on me, personally, by them outside this place.

I'm human, still.

When I can use simple logic against their arguments to disprove them, there is a problem. As we get into the academic areas, there is a chance I could proven wrong, and I need to be willing to accept that.

And so I am willing to accept such.

But until they do provide such, since I am using the *current* hypothesis and their task *as they are challenged* is to do what science cannot do, they will find it increasingly difficult.

Rather than actually "prove me wrong", what they need to do is find substantial information of a sort that shows something *other* than a causational linkage. Enough that it throws into question the current theorem.

They have members who do not feel that my "claims" of education are accurate, however (notwithstanding the fact they lie about what those claims are).

First of all I enjoy your posts. Secondly, I've no personal issues with you whatsoever.

That said, I do have to say that I really cannot, as a feminist, consider part time women as truly being women. The ability to retreat back to the world of cis and male priviledge would make a true understanding of what comes with living 24/7 as a woman impossible.

battybattybats battybattybats | September 30, 2009 11:55 PM

I'm not asking you to!

I'm asking something far more radical, and yet far more rational and consistent.

I'm asking you to recognise my bi-gender identity. My experience of having a bi-gender identity. Which comes with some privileges and yet also some disadvantages and it's own set on intersections.

And believe me being a MtF Bi-Gender Identity person in a relationship with a FtM one we both see how it cuts Both Ways with them getting quite a few advatages over me and me wuite a few advantages over them!

I do not get to partake in all advantages of mens privilege, i'm far too feminine even at my most male for that. Nor do i suffer all the disadvantages of being a woman. I do not claim otherwise.

And I suffer specific disadvantages and discriminations for being a bi-gender identity person who expresses that openly rather than by jiding one or the other as best i could in order to try to avoid what discrimination I could.

Can you recognise my experience? Can you recognise my self-identification? I don't claim to be as much of a woman as the women arguing here. Nor am I as much of a man as many of the men who have argued here either! I claim to be me. Still totally human.

And likely the result of the mild or partial cross-sexed neurology that the science that goes up on Zoe's blog predicts exists.. in greater numbers than the severe cases.

And here's the trick.

You see, I *do* recognize this, *while* I agree with Maura.

I do not find them logically incompatible, nor do they conflict with my personal adherence and preference for the binary.

I am not a deconstructionist -- I find gender to be somewhat of value, but that's more informed by my understanding that there will always be such, at the very least on the part of persons like me who identify so strongly at one point.

And, to the point of those whom I have been opposing, you are not a woman, and, in their minds, it *appears* they perceive you as doing such out of some sexually motivated sense of desire.

I may be wrong -- but there is absolutely that sense given by the language and arguments in use.

So *I* can recognize such, Batty.

And I can recognize the extremity of the challenge that you will face as such a person in a world so tightly structured around an either/or proposition.

Should prove interesting.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 1, 2009 12:24 AM

Indeed my gender identity does not spring from a sexual desire. It's certainly not a requirement for me to enjoy sexual activity.

I noticed one of the Quotes you used: "Most writers on the subject refer to transvestism as a sexual deviation, sometimes as a perversion. It is not necessarily either one. It also can be a result of "gender discomfort" and provide a purely emotional
relief and enjoyment without conscious sexual stimulation, this usually occurring only in later life."

My experiences in the crossdressing comunity leads me to believe that the vast majority of those who do get a sexual buzz out of it usually do so as a result of the constant struggle with their own inner nature. The repression they use on themselves when trying to be 'normal' just can't be pushed totally out of their sexual self. When they start moving towards self-acceptance and stop the constant purges and denials it ceases to be a sexual thing. Thats just anecdotal true, like the observation that a great many CDs discover their father grandfather or uncle was also secretly a CD lending anecdotal credence to it being an inheritable trait.

Now even if it WERE purely sexual that wouldn't invalidate it, as it would not be intrinsically unethical just like being gay and so could be easilly argued as a valid secual identity. But it's not. And Harry Benjamin it appears understood that.

Oh and that 'emotional relief'? Well as far as I can tell that comes from the cessation of a constant mild but accruing dysphoria. Those who hold it back suffer increasing despair anger, self-destructive thoughts and behaviours untill they can stand it no longer.. and thats not sexual because sex isn't the release for it, gender expression is.

Which is exactly what one would expect from a really MILD or PARTIAL case of the TS neurological variation isn't it?

Which is exactly the case in the findings on the overwhelming majority of research done into such.

And yet, they claim the science shows otherwise, or they claim their anecdotal experiences are more prevalent and establish it as not being the case.

Phil asked what's being argued.

In the end, after drilling down past all the assorted diversions and interpersonal issues, what you speak to is the *hard* issue at the center of it all.

They want it announced that there is an explicit difference between transsexuals and non transsexuals, and they do not see a difference when the term transgender is used.

They will not accept anything less than transsexual having absolutely zero relationship to anything other than women and men who absolutely must have the surgery.

And *then* its the interpersonal stuff.


It's fairly certain we wouldn't get along.

Check a current dictionary:

note that it is both an adjective and a noun, please.

My replies are not *always* a series of assertions. They often also include a series a questions -- always is rahter absolutist.

The questions are ignored, or dismissed. Avoidace in discourse is typically a sign of not wanting to really get into something.

As a clinician, you raise good points on the day and time of his creation of that scale -- but you misrpesent it when I demonstrate that

1 - there were three kinds of transsexuals, not two, in two groups -- one of which is nonsurgical, the other of which is two types, one of which may be non surgical

2 - That the same idea has held forth even today of there being a correlative linkage and similar source causation

At no point have I disagreed that there is a physiological causation.

What you may not have noticed is that I will defend your identity as a classic transsexual.

I will not defend, and in fact will oppose, your willingness to reserve that term from others who also identify as such.

When you step up and say "that person is not a transsexual", and they say they are, you cross the line.

You can say "I am a transsexual" and modify it by any adjectival modifier you want, and I have no problem with that.

ITs when you begin deciding for others that I have a problem -- and as a clinician, you are aware of the ethical issues surrounding doing that online or from a few moments of video as they are not representative.

Bigotry is not truthful, Evangelina.

And truth can withstand questioning, can provide answers.

btw, I've mentioned the SoC a couple times.

That stands for Standards Of Care, and they can be considered the rules which most transsexuals generally need to follow to get stuff done as they have the power of institutional authority.

They are maintained by WAPTH, an organization which many transfolk strongly dislike due to a history of gate keeping by the medical professionals (inclusive of therapists) who have used various methods to weed and thin out stuff.

Among some of the things done historically was to deny anyone who was gay (gay man or lesbian) after transition the ability to do so.

If a trans woman was not stereotypically feminine enough, she would often be denied papers -- tomboys and tough chicks need not apply.

Also, due to the same flaws of institutional systems as most of the country, transmen were generally ignored (since they were considered women for many years).

Many transfolk feel that the standards of care are too loose today, in their sixth incarnation. And while most are seeking to remove the classification from the mental section on the basis of stigma, there are also some who want to remove it from all pathological systems entirely (too far, imo) as well as some who would like to see it set up much more strictly.

Almost inevitably, the things that would be used to do so are *personal* expectations of gender specific behavior or narrative based exclusions.

I know some who transitioned in their teens that look at women such as the one's who are arguing here and say none of them are women -- a real transsexual would transition in their teens no matter what the cost.

I know others who say the minimum age to do *anything* is 21. Thus causing the youth greater suffering in my opinion.

None of which is supported scientifically.

As a result, I encourage anyone interested (and all transsexuals) to read and learn the SoC. THose with a bit of money to spare might consider joining WPATH (its surprising affordable)and/or subscribing to the peer reviewed publication (published 4 times per year, and the first double issue this year is all about articles in support of aspects of the new version 7 coming soon). A supporting membership is 175 dollars a year, and if you apply after October 1st, your dues cover the entirety of the next year.

You can download a copy of it in PDF format here:

Towards the bottom of the page -- in english, spanish, and croatian.

I'm the sort that follows the dam theory -- you find a crack in the damn, and exploit it, widening it, letting more and more escape, still looking for more exploits.

Eventually it will crumble the dam.

There is so much BS in what you write, I'm sure anyone reading this can tell just by the volume it's nonsense.

Harry Benjamin did not believe that transvestism was a biological condition. You can argue that till you are blue in the face, but it won't change a thing.

Ah, of course, at this point, after I showed you exactly and precisely what he said, you still have to say he didn't. Even when it comes from your own source.

Reminds me precisely of some arguments using the Bible.

Gee, Aria, sour grapes much?

Thanks for proving my point about willful ignorance.

Benjamin's entire premise in The Transsexual Phenomenon was that true transsexuals (Type VII) were very much different from those who were not true transsexuals (Type I - VI)...that premise was his life's work. Did he ask platonic questions? Yes, he did. Did he speculate? Yes, he did. But platonic questions and conjecture was not the premise of his book, which was based on his research and treatment of all types of what could now be called gender variants. Anyone thinking otherwise is simply taking comments out of context in the same way that some take certain versus of the Holy Bibly out of context to beat senseless anyone who is actually a Christian.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 12:56 AM

Then can you provide in-context quotes that say just that or statements to that effect?

"Yet, an extra chapter on TVism with further characterizations will have to be inserted in order to let the picture of transsexualism emerge more clearly."

BBB, the entire book is based on that premise, that is the overriding theme of it. But, Ariablue has already quoted the most succinct paragrapshs...I will repeat them below. In this passage he is discussing true transsexualism, Type VII.

If there are those who choose to read into Benjamin what they will to reinforce their position...have at it. But it will not change his position, nor mine, nor the premise of his work. I'm also not in the least interested in debating this with either of you...believe what you like. The Transsexual Phenomenon was NOT written to offer up similarities, but to draw a distinction between true transsexualism and other degrees of gender variance all of which are based on transvestism.

And, just for the record, though I'm more than sure it will fall on the deaf ears of Phil Reese and others, I will repeat once again what I have said on my blog many times...true/classic transsexualism is different than any other form of gender variance; it is not better...

"The transsexual (TS) male or female is deeply unhappy as a member of the sex (or gender) to which he or she was assigned by the anatomical structure of the body, particularly the genitals. To avoid misunderstanding: this has nothing to do with hermaphroditism. The transsexual is physically normal (although occasionally underdeveloped). These persons can somewhat appease their unhappiness by dressing in the clothes of the opposite sex, that is to say, by cross-dressing, and they are, therefore, transvestites too. But while "dressing" would satisfy the true transvestite (who is content with his morphological sex), it is only incidental and not more than a partial or temporary help to the transsexual. True transsexuals feel that they belong to the other sex, they want to be and function as members of the opposite sex, not only to appear as such. For them, their sex organs, the primary (testes) as well as the secondary (penis and others) are disgusting deformities that must be changed by the surgeon’s knife. This attitude appears to be the chief differential diagnostic point between the two syndromes (sets of symptoms) - that is, those of transvestism and transsexualism."

"The transvestite (TV) usually wants to be left alone. He requests nothing from the medical profession, unless he wants a psychiatrist to try to cure him. The transsexual (TS), however, puts all his faith and future into the hands of the doctor, particularly the surgeon. These patients want to undergo corrective surgery, a so-called "conversion operation," so that their bodies would at least resemble those of the sex to which they feel they belong and to which they ardently want to belong."

"The desire to change sex has been known to psychologists for a longtime. Such patients were rare. Their abnormality has been described in scientific journals in the past in various ways; for instance, as "total sexual inversion," or "sex role inversion." Beyond some attempts with psychotherapy in a (futile) effort to cure them of their strange desires, nothing was or could be done for them medically. Some of them probably languished in mental institutions, some in prisons, and the majority as miserable, unhappy members of the community, unless they committed suicide. Only because of the recent great advances in endocrinology and surgical techniques has the picture changed."

All of which came from the *same* section I pulled my quotes from.

Indeed, mine *prefaced* it.

SO I'm not "reading into it" anything not already there.

And, furthermore, you admit that you cannot pull out such a quotation, and instead make an unprovable claim regarding the book as a whole.

This is a great synopsis Susan. I hope this clears everything up.

Honestly I cannot understand why this thread is still plodding along. Susan has explained Harry Benjamin's book and Aria has also made Dr. Benjamin's conclusions as clear and can be.

This book was first published in 1965 incase everyone's math is lacking I'll do the calculation for you that is 44 years ago. As previous writers have made abundantly clear Dr. Benjamin’s book “The Transsexual Phenomenon was essentially written from consultation notes. Indeed it contains many letters and quotations from patients of Dr Benjamin’s. Actually they are remarkably similar to some notes I made myself in 1985 before reading Dr Benjamin’s work.

I include a sample for you:

"I cannot stand all this any more," said one of my patients, characteristically pointing downward. "It does not
belong to me; it must go."

A quote from one patient whom Dr Benjamin describes as Type 7 This is from another.

"Another transsexual who had lived and worked successfully as a woman for years, was accepted by her family,
and had an excellent plastic breast surgery performed, wanted me to send her finally to a surgeon for genital
alteration. I could not help asking her why, when she had already accomplished so much and seemed
reasonably contented. With genuine astonishment, she pointed below and said: "But girls don't have that!"

Dr. Benjamin begins his chapter titled “Genetic Sources thus:

"No genetic cause has as yet been proved for any transsexual manifestation. In a few rare cases of the
Klinefelter syndrome, being complicated by transsexualism (or vice versa), the usual genetic fault was found, the
patients showing 47 chromosomes (instead of the normal 46), with a chromosomal constellation of XXY instead
of XY. At the same time, there were the usual clinical findings (see Chapters II and III). All transsexual patients
without complicating disorders so far reported showed a normal chromosomal sex.
Let us remember, however, that genetics is still a young science and our investigating methods may still be
rather crude, compared to possible future methods. At present we have hardly lifted a corner of the veil that
hides the mystery. It would well behoove us, therefore, to keep an open mind, remembering also that negative
findings in medicine mean little as compared to the positive. The absence of findings does not negate their
possible existence."

In a section titled ‘The Etiology of Transsexualism” he writes:

"The causes of transsexualism and the possible sources from which the desire to change sex may spring are
probably the most controversial, puzzling, and obscure parts of this book. There is so far only the very beginning
of a type of scientific investigation that takes more than merely psychological aspects into consideration"

Later in the same section

"In this country, psychology and psychoanalysis still dominate the field of sexual deviations. Many psychologists,
particularly analysts, have little biological background and training. Some seem actually contemptuous of
biological facts and persistently overstate psychological data, so much so that a distorted, one-sided picture of
the problem under consideration results.
Psychiatrists with biological orientation strongly disagree and even decry the exclusive psychoanalytic
interpretations. But their voice is heard too rarely.
Two possible biological sources of transsexualism (and - not to forget - this book occupies itself principally with
this phenomenon) are the genetic and the endocrine"

It seems abundantly clear to me as indeed it should too any scholar who reads the book that Dr Benjamin was clearly confident that new research as knowledge and research methods improved that this kind of evidence would emerge

I do hope this clears up any uncertainties that may have crept in to any readers here.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 10:56 AM

Your quotes back his definitition of one of his classes of transsexual. They are not saying they are unrelated to the other catagories!

As for genetics, the gene found so far to be more common in transsexuals still exists in the general population. Leading to the likelyhood that a combination of genes are involved and therefore a likelihood of DEGREES of the condition.

And then the Dick Swaab article.. but can you confirm or discredit the claim by a commenter of an interview with the same Dick Swaab mentioned on Zoe's Blog in the comments here

Some quotes here:" "We only, by accident, hit on a little bit of it"

He also explicitly supported the idea that there is a biological causation for the whole range of gender identity variations:

"I think we talked about a scale like the Kinsey scale for sexual orientation – we should also have a gender identity scale. It is not either this or that; there is also something in between. The distribution will not be simple, but here will be people somewhere in the middle."

"So it is not the entire brain that is switching, it is some systems, and that may also be the explanation for the [gender identity] scale. Some systems do switch and others don’t and it depends on which systems have switched where you enter on the scale."

So, can these quotes be confirmed or discredited?

Can quotes be found where Harry Benjamin says there is no connection between his catagories?

Harry Benjamin had a point about people with no idea of biological sciences.

What about the evidence for cross-sexed brain variations in gays and lesbians? Does that not suggest that TS and GLB are variations of the same or related phenomena? And back to Zoe's blog for the links

So then whats the biological science and the biological scientists say again?

And where can it be clearly found direct evidence that Harry Benjamin held the views claimed for him, that these catagories were unrelated, as Dyssonances quotes say otherwise and the quotes you've given dont refute her claims thus far.

Because so far its sounding like his views are being missrepresented, presumably totally unintentionally. If he said what its being claimed he said then there should be sentences that can be quoted that makes that clear yes?

As I said, any scholar reading the book would come away with the understanding that Dr.Benjamin believed there to be a biological causation.

Frankly, I've not heard or read any convincing arguments to the contrary in 44 years, including the ones you've cited.

That would be because the arguments are not refuting that there is a biological causation.

The argument is that the causation for all of it is biological.

(IOW, you used a logical fallacy)

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 10:45 PM

People read there to be lesbianism in Sheriden Le Fanu's vampire story Carmilla, Homosexuality in Of Mice And Men as well as Homosexual Jeolousy in Iago's destruction of Othello... but these are not stated in the texts but peoples interpretations of the subtexts and implications of it.. interesting armchair discussion of FICTION but not very good for discussing a book on science or medicine.

In that field things get stated explicitly. So then if that was his conclusion or the clear result of his evidence it would be stated in words that are direct and quotable.

Reading the text like it was a piece of fiction might be good for projecting your own preferred interpretation into it but is not going to actually prove your point.

Hypothesis: Your missinterpreting his conclusions and the evidence.
To test the hypothesis you can disprove it by showing clearly where he says what you claim he says and where the evidence shows what you claim it shows. Because contrary evidence has been raised. And just saying 'but it does' or 'the evidence is in there somewhere *vague wave of hand* doesn't cut the mustard.

Please. Nobody buys that male crossdressing, sexual or otherwise, is related to being born with a birth defect. Twisting words doesn't change reality.

He did. Most competent professionals in the the fields of biology, medicine, sociology, psychology, psychiatry, and so forth do.

Thusly, there is a logical fallacy in employ in your comment.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 10:52 PM

What twisting?

Please show EXACTLY where words are twisted!

"If he said what its being claimed he said then there should be sentences that can be quoted that makes that clear yes?"

For the first time in my life I just yesterday read "the Transsexual Phenomonen" the book written by Harry Benjamin. I did so for my own curiosity to see what in fact he did say, and why there are so many people that refute what others post.

In my opinion, having read and understood the book, and taking into account the period in which it was written, one cannot simply call it the bible on transsexuality. Harry may just have set us all up with this book, for Harry is the master of contradiction, at least the way I read the book.

He seems to come to a concluion on something, and then he throws in a statement afterwards that leaves his conclusion open to debate. Perhaps he did this on purpose, knowing that science is constantly progressing and leaving himself an out for future generations.

I do believe that his overall conclusions are correct though, that there is a dividing line between Transsexuals and the Transvestite crossdressers that is the subject of the book. That dividing line, according to Benjamin, is the absolute need for surgical intervention(SRS)and the loathing and hatred of the birth genitals displayed by what he terms "True Transsexuals".

According to Benjamin, these are traits only displayed by the transsexual, although some of the other groups he classes as transvestites also go to the extremes of surgury, but are not dependent on it for their very survival.

This book was written some 60 years ago and since then we have all sorts of advances in the medical sciences and many new postulations. However, the true transsexuals imperitive remains the same.

Benjamin, by the very fact that his book leaves so many contradictory statements, may well be the reason that today we have the transgender able to simply claim the title of transsexual, even though they may know full well that they are not what Benjamin classed as a true or classic transsexual which he delineated by the overwhelming need of genital surgury at whatever cost, up to and including death itself.

Although not germane to the questions that have been asked, it is an excellent overall examination of the book itself, although I find that since the dividing line as described in his book is inclusive of transsexuals (as he describes them) who do not have surgery, I am more inclined to say that the actual dividing line is hormones.

I have no doubt that is how you would read it dys-information, but that is clearly not what he says at all, and I would urge those that are curious and have not read it cover to cover for themselves to actualy do so.

Surprisingly it is not a difficult read, and a rather small book which could easily be read over a couple of hours. That is way less time than reading one of dysonnances dys-accurate dys-ertations that sets out to manipulate the audience to dys-agree with what some of us have said here.

Ad hominem fallacy, Leigh.

First, you used a characteristic of my writing (length) to make a false comparison of time to read (the length of the small book is greater than my writing), in order to provide a discrediting attack on me as a result of my writing.

Which is easily established by the use of my nymic quirk to restructure existing words.

Furthermore, there is no logic in your statement that "that is clearly not what he says at all" when the actual quote, from the book, is given above, where he does, indeed, say exactly that.

That said, I do agree with you in that anyone interested should read the entire book.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 10:57 PM

We have a quote attributed to Dick Swaab, not yet discredited as valid, that suggests the current science supports the notion. So we can't blame an old book for that.

And weren't non-ops included in the studies that came up with evidence FOR biological causation?

What this means if true is that the GRS (and i use that as the genital reconstructive surgery acronym) imperative is simply the strongest or one varient subset of those with a biological cause for being transsexual. And going by the non-op inclusion and Dick Swaabs attributed quote the rest of Transgender too.

Leigh, I have a probably terminal condition which makes GRS difficult. I have to weigh up the chances of 1. dying in surgery or
2. rapid decrease in health or
3. successful outcome.
And then find a cooperative surgeon.
Now, I'm a big girl,I know shit when I smell it, and whether or not your coterie want to label me a fetishist isn't going to affect my choices. Those without benefit of my advanced years may be more easily influenced in their surgical choices. 'Give me GRS or give me death' may make for a good rallying cry, but you're not the one who might be doing the dying.


I am sorry to hear of your life threatening ailment. You have my deepest sympathies and understanding.

You say that you are in advanced years, I too dear although not what some may consider advanced, am certainly getting up there at close to retirement age. I started transition at 27 had SRS at 35. I paid for it myself, with no help from relatives who have always been poor. During that time, I was also a new immigrant to the USA, leaving behind everything and all my ties to everyone.

Now the reason I say this is because I wonder what prevented you from doing SRS during your early years. What one or multiple of the following was more important to you then, family, carear, children, fear, death?

Whether you're NOW a big girl or not has nothing to do with how many rotten fish there are in Denmark. The definition of fetishist or true transsexual was made not by me or my coterie, but by Harry Benjamin, a world renowned and respected endocrinologist, widely known for his clinical work with transsexualism.

That you're particular life circumstances do not fit his classification for a true transsexual does not make his diagnosis any the less valid.

To charge me or my coterie as being hateful for pointing out the differences in the face of an onslaught from all and sundry that would seek to make our lives and experiences as meaningless as simple crossdressing, is actually shame on you rather than the shame you and others are trying to lay at our feet.

Sorry but that dog isn't going to hunt any longer.

Somewhat misleading, Leigh

As already pointed out -- and, to date, not substantially challenged -- Harry Benjamin has three classifications for "true" transsexual, and she mets at least one of them.

That one or more of those particular elements ,y have slowed her down does not mean she any less valid a transsexual, or an less a true transsexual n the terms of Harry Benjamin, and most certainly not so under the current requirements as described.

You and your coterie are not hateful because you are pointing out the differences, you are being hateful in the manner in which you do so.

Why don't you let sophie tell us why sophie didn't transition earlier in life.

Does sophie really need trained attack dogs like dyssonance and a crossdressing man from australia speaking for sophie?

Are you all that insecure that you can't let someone tell their own story for fear they will deviate from transgender dogma?

Odd, I haven't stopped her from doing so.

Once again, more logical fallacies, more weak attempts at evasion, less reasonable discourse.

plus some ad hominem's tossed in for good measure.

tsk tsk.

Now, who was that attack dog, again?

battybattybats battybattybats | October 5, 2009 9:59 AM

I'm not speaking for anyone Leigh. Nor is there a 'transgender dogma'.

And still you do not and presumably can not address any of the points raised about the effects of the rest of the science your repeatedly ignoring. Nor respond without an Ad Hominem attack on me or Dyssonance.

As i said before:
Is your side of this so without evidence, so without integrity, so without validity that the only way it can be defended is with invective?

battybattybats battybattybats | October 5, 2009 10:27 AM


1. if you desire people to respect your self-identification as not transgender your obligated to respect others self identification including mine as being bi-gender. It's basic reciprocal ethics! Without it what gives you the right to have your self identification recognised?

2. What does the country i reside in have to do with anything?

3. You think I'm 'trained'? By whom? What secret master or what underground cabal of diabolocal TG supervillains do you imagine control me? lol.

That would be assuming that she is in fact a true transsexual which is at odds with Benjamin's findings that a true transsexual will not accept to living with their birth genitalia to advanced age. That would also be my findings too, based on my own experience, but dont let that have any bearing on this.

Its all too convenient to simply steal someone elses narrative and appy it to themself, then blame old age and infermity for not being able to have SRS.

But then that would not fit neatly with transgender dogma which preaches that anyone can be whatever they say they are without question. How convenient.

I call lie.

Please substantiate this whole true transsexual statement.

Just went over the entire book, cannot find *any* thing that says such, so I am going to say lie until you prove otherwise.

From The Transsexual Phenomenon:

"True transsexuals feel that they belong to the other sex, they want to be and function as members of the opposite sex, not only to appear as such. For them, their sex organs, the primary (testes) as well as the secondary (penis and others) are disgusting deformities that MUST be changed by the surgeon’s knife."

How different is that to what I just said .. oh I guess you where looking for verbatim copy that said: "Benjamin's findings that a true transsexual will not accept to living with their birth genitalia to advanced age."

It's the same thing except you have to be anal about it.

And how come you get a free pass to call me a liar and I get deleted for pointing out your own admission to being a sociopath on your own blog?


battybattybats battybattybats | October 5, 2009 9:41 PM

But those two sentences don't say the same thing.

Your saying a true transsexual must transition early, but you quote Harry Benjamin merely saying they need genital surgery, not that it must be early in life.

Thats you Reading In your conclusion to his text.
And whether or not it is what he might have thought its not in what he actually said right there. The two sentences do not have the same meaning!

And as I keep saying, he wasn't a prophet but a man of science. Science marches on and Newtons greatness survives even though we have to add to and change his ideas on gravity and light and the rest.

Science does suggest related neurological variations amongst Gays and Lesbians. Science does suggest that a biologically caused gender spectrum exists. And that makes 'true transsexuals' merely a subset of a wider phenomenon of neurological intersex. With an urgent need for surgery certainly, which I and many others support their access to. But that doesn't preclude others having a right to surgery nor others having their gender being recognised with all the human rights pertinent to that.

So once again your coterie must come to grips with THE REST OF THE SCIENCE! And where that science is heading.

Not to mention ending the hypocracy of demanding the human right of self identification while abusing the same human right of others! And demanding respect while disrespecting others. So you can start right now with me. And have the integrity to recognise my bi-gender identity! And in a respectful manner.

Which part of "A birth condition" do you not understand batty! .. (probably all of it since you dont agree that transsexualism is a birth condition)

Transsexualism IS a birth condition. Transgender is a social condition.

That means transsexuals are aware of it before they reach retirement age ..... they didnt just discover it on their "things to do before I die" list.

... and since the second part of that is to quote benjamin on his definition of true transsexuals; "For them, their sex organs, the primary (testes) as well as the secondary (penis and others) are disgusting deformities that MUST be changed by the surgeon’s knife."

I really dont think Benjamin meant that to be read as sometime after retirement and prior to death, but I am sure you do.

And now I am DONE with this.

oh, come on -- you are just gonna keep on with it.

Give poor Phil a break -- he's had to read all your equivocation and outright lunacy than any cis person should ever have to be put through.

I would be happy if ALL of you would be done with this VERY VERY soon. My inbox is full of hatred and ill will and its starting to smell every time I lift my laptop lid. If you don't like an entire category of people that's your business, but you've proven nothing on these boards, other than hate knows no SANITY.

Ugh, BTW, this is officially the LONGEST comment thread on Bilerico ever even WITHOUT the TOSed stuff.

I can't wait to see this stop showing up every few hours. At least its not every 3 minutes anymore...

battybattybats battybattybats | October 5, 2009 10:33 PM

What The F...?

Capitalisation that follows is emphasis to aiod comprehension.

Here I am posting repeatedly about how the SCIENCE says that being GAY and LESBIAN is ALSO at least sometimes A BIRTH CONDITION. And how the SCIENTISTS say that all the GENDER SPECTRUM is also probably a BIRTH CONDITION.

I never disputed but in fact REPEATEDLY HAVE ACKNOWLEDGED the evidence for BIOLOGICAL aspects of transsexual phenomena. But also repeatedly posted that other things too appear to ALSO BE BIOLOGICALLY CAUSED NEUROLOGICAL INTERSEX BIRTH CONDITIONS.

MAYBE TRY READING WHATS ACTUALLY WRITTEN? As somehow what the words say and what you think the words say seem often to be DIAMETRICALLY OPPOSITE.

Bat's covered the basics. Too bad you are done with the thread.

Oh, and as to how I can get away with it and you can't is pretty simple, actually: it's because I am dx'd with asd.

Which doesn't make me a bad person, something they know, while you were using it in order to make me seem like a bad person.

Too bad you haven't shown you are capable of having a real conversation without resorting to "tricks".

Sorry not to have replied earlier – time and tide.
This is simply a derail, dear. But to gratify your curiosity, I’m one of those peculiar late gender-shift types with major hormonal changes, not a type considered by Harry Benjamin. I’ve had active gender displacement for 18 months and have been transitioning for the last 9 months. In return, might you actually answer my question ?
To put it clearly, is your nearing- retirement- age conscience sensible of the possibility that the elevation of these rigid status oriented divisions might influence the surgical decisions of a person of any age and history, and are you happy with that chance?
And do you really believe that Harry Benjamin would have remotely approved of your use of his work to simplistically distinguish between fetishist and transsexual? I ask here not as a world renowned endocrinologist but as a qualified psychologist.
Actually I can partially share your desire to distinguish between conditions that might be comparatively ludic, and those where the element of choice is radically limited .. But it’s purely an intellectual desire with me, if only because it would seem obviously politically undesirable and lead to the kind of othering so apparent on this thread.
Due to the peculiarities of my life situation, I have little contact with trans people. I’m transitioning in an extremely public way, and for support I rely on a large number of cis gendered women. The vast majority have accepted me and relate to me as a woman, even with my ‘prolapsed vagina’. Because whatever they look like, whatever they’ve done, you don’t unsister a sister. That’s what makes the rad fems so sad. We’re trans women, real women, and we can have more grace than that.

ROFL ...

I don't think I have heard such a load of pure unadulterated BS in a very long time.

Prolapsed vagina indeed ...

I would actually say more but it wouldn't clear the moderators, dear

As dyss would say "I CALL LIE"!

Have fun with it.

I’m sorry if you find the expression ‚’prolapsed vagina’, too arch ; its just a way of trying to minimise the dysphoria.
If you could possibly pull yourself off the floor, I am actually a minor public figure outside the world of gender variance and at least 1 major news outlet has reported my transition. I’m not happy about passing out information because I don’t trust you and I seek a certain anonymity, mainly because of intra-familial lack of knowledge about my health, but if you and, say, dyss, can agree on a 3rd party I’d be only too pleased to correct your BS diagnosis.
Since you don’t have the basic courtesy to answer my questions, let me reiterate my last point, for your personal benefit. Being a real woman involves rather more than playing with either presentation or anatomy, and one rather basic form is in a real acceptance of other women, regardless of their anatomical peculiarities. Evidently you’re presently at too early a stage of transition to be aware of this, and perhaps I could venture to suggest that a degree of self-examination for the retention of male privilege might not go amiss.

OK .. you bait me. I personaly dont think you actually exist, but are in fact dyssonance or another troll baiting me.

I did actually post in my original reply to you the following:

"You say that you are in advanced years, I too dear although not what some may consider advanced, am certainly getting up there at close to retirement age. I started transition at 27 had SRS at 35. "

I think 30 years full time, 21 years post op, and married to a non-gay man trumps your "active gender displacement for 18 months and have been transitioning for the last 9 months"

I will say this one last time. True transsexuals do not wait till after retirement to seek surgical intervention. It is for them an imperitive known very early in their life.

Now you can seek to cut, distort and twist that any way you feel fit, but it doesn't make it any less true and if you really are a psychiatrist your very next patient ought to be yourself.

Attempt to teach your grandmother to suck eggs much?

First off, I’m a psychologist, not a psychiatrist, academically centred in cognitive theory and linguistics, and I haven’t practiced in a long time in interpersonal therapies I still think my history is a derail, but I’ll try and make a point out of it. When I say 18 months I mean that is my entire history of gender issues. Its something that happens to a few people with various conditions – late onset DES effects being one. I may have had a fair amount of female energy as a man, but only very suddenly did gender identity issues force themselves upon me. My own condition is similar to hypogonadism, which in its infant condition had been present in 40% of Benjamin’s original group.
I consider myself extremely lucky in this regard. I can respect you for a lifetime of dealing with this condition, in going through what must have been a horribly difficult childhood, surviving and making a satisfying life for yourself. I’ve nothing to compare with that.
The problem is that you don’t allow for this sort of respect as having value. Because that would mean according the same to others who may have had even harder struggles, but who don’t meet your criteria for classic transsexual. We both know that doesn’t mean someone who cross-dresses for sex.
And if you still cling to the dividing line being the overriding driving necessity, well then I suppose I could ask you to compare the two of us. It took you 27 years before you transitioned: it took me 9 months. Bus running late, was it ?

battybattybats battybattybats | October 4, 2009 11:30 PM

Onslaught? An onslaught of science and truth maybe.

1. When so many lives are torn apart because of peoples hateful attitude to crossdressing, something which has existed throughout all human history with many indiginous traditions, is an ethical practice with nothing intrinsicly unethical about it, when people are MURDERED for crossdressing (with several crossdressers being amongst the recent few years transphobic murder victims includining 14 year old Letiticia/Lawrance King) with crossdressers comiting suicide because of unethical stigmatisation in society and the impact that the erasure of crossdressing from culture and society has had on their self esteem, relationships families and more and with them still a heavilly discriminated against group of people means calling crossdressing meaningless is seriously offensive! Thats disgraceful.

2. IF the fetishistic label held any water at all it would still be ethical and therfore a VALID sexuality! Deserving every iota the respect of any other Ethical sexuality. And didn't i hear there was more than two catagories of fetishist CD and True TS? The experiences and even, seeing as the only answer to quotes of him have been merely assertions, your esteemed saint Benjamin didn't support that as he said himself that non-sexual transvestism and other forms of transsexual existed!

3. Science is progressive. So holding up an old text like a divine revelation is nonsense. Past pioneers deserve respect for sure, but the knowledge moves on regardless. And your coterie if thats a term your fine with need to catch up with the inclusion of non-ops in the SUPPORTING dataset for biological aspects, with the cross-sex neurology evidence in Gays and Lesbians too, and most of all with the advancing understanding of Neuroplasticity of the brain suggesting that the biological evidence could be caused by experience and choices rather than vice versa and so finding biological evidence for GLBT doesn't neccessarily prove that it was so from birth and studies will be needed to explore the development over a lifetime of these traits in a huge sample population in order to test if any or all are from birth or instead some are devlopmental brain changes with environmental aspects.

Perhaps a refresher course on scientific literacy and just as importantly on Ethics might be in order for your coterie.

I understand that for some reason people believe that i have a particular following, and, therefore, there is some value to the effort to discredit me.

However, in doing so, can we at least do it in a manner that actually attacks what I write, directly, instead of fallaciously using one's personal perception of my personal qualities in order to do so, or would that be too difficult?

I ask this not because I am particularly worried about the puerile attacks on my character or being, but rather because if we are, indeed, going to be making such arguments, I'd prefer to focus on the actual arguments, rather than on the people making them, since, in the end, the objective is supposedly to establish general truth, as opposed to carrying on interpersonal warfare.

You discredit yourself Dyss, nobody needs to help you. Everyone saw the video.

And again with the ad hominems that do not prove any aspect of anything other than you found it distasteful.

It's a fallacy that any video I might produce, say, for example, the one here: would have any direct bearing on the substantive arguments here, unless the argument was, in fact, that I am not a woman, or even a transsexual.

Since my Birth certificate does indeed state I am, unless you'd like the challenge the authority of the State of Arizona, you'd have a hard time proving it as anything more than strictly your opinion.

And, since it is opinion, you are quite entitled to such -- it does not, however, prove that I am not a woman, merely that you have the opinion I am not.

It might also prove that my opinion of the particular breakaway sect that has recently been said to be embarrassing to the general HBS movement (and to which you belong), is rather poor, and that I have personal issues involved.

It does not however, discredit the statements I've made here thus far, in terms of their truth or other factual concerns, and does not, in fact, directly address such.

Indeed, one could make the point that since I do have such evidence, I could turn to you, personally, and request that you provide evidence of a like kind.

At which point, things would unfair, and the primary conversation would be lost once again is series of interpersonal conflicts.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 2, 2009 10:31 PM

Ad hominems?

Seriously i thought we'd already established that those kind of logical fallacies were signs of lacking a real credible argument?

If your side can actually raise some valid arguments it might be a good idea to try rather than making your side look bad by just mudflinging in response to cogent reason.

Is your side of this so without evidence, so without integrity, so without validity that the only way it can be defended is with invective?

Some of the logical fallacies thus far described:

Straw man: A straw man argument is an informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position.

When one politician says to another, "You don't have the moral authority to say X", this could be an example of the argumentum ad hominem or personal attack fallacy; that is, attempting to disprove X, not by addressing validity of X but by attacking the person who asserted X. Arguably, the politician is not even attempting to make an argument against X, but is instead offering a moral rebuke against the interlocutor.

Irrelevant Conclusion: diverts attention away from a fact in dispute rather than address it directly. Related forms used thus far:

purely personal considerations (argumentum ad hominem),

fear (argumentum ad baculum),

proving the proposition under dispute without any certain proof (argumentum ad ignoratiam)


"You discredit yourself Dyss, nobody needs to help you. Everyone saw the video."

This is shorthand for saying: "Because Dyss' video shows her to be what I think of as unacceptable behavior for a woman, she is not a woman, and therefore her arguments are unsound."

That they do not, personally, see Dyss as a woman does not, in and of itself, discredit Dyss' arguments, and the video does not, in and of itself, directly discredit the arguments made here thus far. It merely provides limited evidence of situational behavior that may or may not be reflective of the person as a whole.

It is also an appeal to popular sentiment, which is also a fallacy.

"Please. Nobody buys that male crossdressing, sexual or otherwise, is related to being born with a birth defect. Twisting words doesn't change reality."

This one could be rewritten to state "Please, I do not buy it, and nobody I know buys it, that male cross dressing, sexual or otherwise, is related to being born with a defect."

It would still have a fallacy, being based on an unproven hypothesis that there is no correlation between being born with a birth defect (contextually meaning transsexualism) and male crossdressing, but would escape the fallacy of purely personal considerations and an appeal to popular sentiment.

"As I said, any scholar reading the book would come away with the understanding that Dr.Benjamin believed there to be a biological causation.
Frankly, I've not heard or read any convincing arguments to the contrary in 44 years, including the ones you've cited."

The fallacy here is that no one has disupted, thus far, that statement. Everyone here has, thus far, noted that both are based in a biological causation. This makes it a straw man argument, seeking to misrepresent the position of another.

These are just a few of the various types of arguments used thus far and the problems with them.

By definition, arguments with logical fallacies are invalid, but they can often be rewritten in such a way that they fit a valid argument form. The challenge to the interlocutor is, of course, to discover the false premise, i.e. the premise that makes the argument unsound.

Sigh, I hope this wraps up soon. Toward that end, let me point out something that might resolve these last few conversations.

There is nothing wrong with not being a true transsexual. It does not mean that you're gender is fake or isn't real. It does not mean that you're not a transsexual (as the use of the modifier suggests that there are other types of transsexuals as well). It does not mean that you are a "fetishist" or that your motivations for transitioning are illegitimate.

So when someone suggests that the age you transition at, or any other factor, means that you are not a true transsexual, it's not (or at least shouldn't be) an insult.

"True transsexual," as far as I have gathered, was created half a century ago, is rarely used in contemporary medical contexts, was removed from the standards of care two or more versions ago, and was originally created as a way to whittle down the number of patients by denying care to anyone who didn't fit the most restrictive (not to mention homophobic, sexist, etc) definition. In it's contemporary incarnation, people usually leave out the homophobic and sexist parts of it, but nonetheless it's a phraseology and history that I have no need to be associated with.

If you find others telling you that you don't fit into it, take a moment to consider if it's something that you really need to argue you're way into. Do you feel a need to adopt the narrative of a true transsexual in order to feel legitimate? Can you feel legitimate without it? Or are you simply reacting to someone who's being mean to you? If it's the later, you might feel better if you just drop it. If it's the former, you might find better sources of validation elsewhere.


Ugh! I know that this certainly won't put this thread to bed, but its certainly really important to note all of this!

Why do so many of these discussions end up as part exchange of insults and part “pissing contest”?

At the time Harry Benjamin’s book was published the doctor reports being consulted by 152 patients only and one of the things he looked for was indeed hypergonadism which he found in 40% It is a significant proportion but the converse is that 60% of his patients did not. Which way of looking at this statistic is more significant? The majority of Benjamin’s patients were in their 20’s and he reports an average age of 33 So statistically Leigh falls within the majority age for correction. Only one of Benjamin’s patients were of your advanced years Sophia. I am tempted to make comments about the one upmanship entered into here but I don’t think it will be helpful.

Regards DES speculation in this area is I believe rather misleading since the numbers of claimed transsexual patients is increasing in recent years and the introduction of any hormone based drugs to pregnant women has long since ceased. Yet still the numbers increase. If there was serious money to be made from transsexuality by drug companies I have every confidence there would be much more research being done that there is. The field however is statistically small and really not all that profitable so we are neglected.

As regards the longevity of this thread I feel for Phil who opened this particular can of worms. Must be tough on a gay man to host something like this because it really has nothing whatever to do with gay issues, yet here it is being played out within a gay discussion blog. I’ve made few comments here and I hope most have made a useful contribution even though they have attracted some rather banal criticism. It seems par for the course. I just know this, the Classic Transsexual is real and is impossible to spot in mainstream society. But when one walks into your consulting room the contrast to transgender is stark, not just in appearance but in the way they conduct their life both in the past and in their plans for the future. The difference is real and marked.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 6, 2009 11:00 PM

"it really has nothing whatever to do with gay issues"

Hello? Science has found cross-sexed neurology found in gays and lesbians. It's all on Zoe's blog let alone New Scientist and the like.

That means that being gay or lesbian are at least sister-conditions. Possibly even varients of the same cause!

Making the transsexual phenomena totally a gay issue and vice versa.

"Striking similarities between the brains of gay men and straight women have been discovered by neuroscientists, offering fresh evidence that sexual orientation is hardwired into our neural circuitry."

Science is revealing the connections. They exist. Deal with it.

Gay men stuff isn't a women's issue, and vice versa. It's not too much to ask that gay men mind their own business. Same goes for crossdressers.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 6, 2009 11:39 PM


Or have you scientific evidence that shows the articles points about the cross-sexed neurology of gay men and lesbian women?

Or what it says about the rest of bi-gender brain phenomena?

There's the link. There's the science. Its progressed since then, the evidence getting stronger not weaker.

So there's the science. Deal with it! The reality is there, it doesn't match your preconceptions of what would be there, but it's still there.

I realise it must be hard for you to handle but there it is.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 7, 2009 12:39 AM

My apologies. That was suppossed to say (corection in capitals) "Or have you scientific evidence that shows the articles points about the cross-sexed neurology of gay men and lesbian women IS INCORRECT?"

As for this discussion ending.. it will keep resurfacing so long as this group uses NARTH and Michael Behe Intelligent Design style cherry-picked pseudo-science to justify there views and constant personal attacks on others.

They attack even those like me who support their right to self-identify as not transgender.

It'll only be a matter of months at most till this all starts up again here or somewhere else. And it will only end when the hypocracy of cherry-picked science, the hypocracy of claiming a right of self idemtification while denying it to others and the practice of vitriol and personal attacks ends.

I hope it can, as all these hypocracies merely hurt what is otherwise a simple human right being asserted, each persons absolute universal human right to identify how they choose. And a simple scientific truth, that there is biological evidence for TS phenomena.

The human rights though cuts both ways which they need to acknowledge. And the science says lots more which they need to acknowledge.

Otherwise they will paint themselves into the same kind of corner as flat-earthers, heliocentrists, Michael Behe and all those who still claim racial supremacy and other such discredited bunkum.

For the love of the Goddess, let this thread die the death it so richly deserves.


And very honestly, I have issues with straight clinicians deciding who is or is not a woman. The last time that they did so to any degree, we got the generation of Donna Reed/June Cleaver post ops that gave Greer, Daly and Raymond agita.

The Lesbian Feminist community was never impressed with the product of the Benjamin era "Standards of Care(?)"

"And very honestly, I have issues with straight clinicians deciding who is or is not a woman."

Oh really!

Well, some of us have issues with the GLBT deciding that anyone who ever tried on a pair of womans panties is a woman.

Why would the Lesbian Feminist Community have any views one way or the other on transsexual issues? They are in essense 2 different things.

"Why would the Lesbian Feminist Community have any views one way or the other on transsexual issues? They are in essense 2 different things."

OK, here is why the women of operative past feel attacked constantly--

because you need to go back and study debate and argumentation. Public Library. They got books there.

ALL of the arguments made by this group have relied ONLY on fallacies, relativism, misleading vividness and false dilemmas. Not saying there haven't been fallacies on the other side as well, but it hasn't been as pervasive.

Gay men can't have views on this (because they disagree with you, of course!)

Neither can straight men.

Neither can lesbians.

Transgender people can't decide they're women, only YOU can decide who a woman is--because Harry Benjamin said so 60 years ago!

So the only person who has a say in this discussion are members of one side of the issue, but no other interested parties, and certainly noone on the other side of the issue.

Total fallacy.

This is begging the question: "Clearly none of you actually can have an opinion in this, in fact only I can have an opinion here, and I say this, so clearly I'm right and you're wrong, and since I'm right, you can't have a say in this!"

First of all, BOTH sides have made TONS of Ad hominem claims, but it seems that the women of operative past who don't want transgender folk to determine their own gender--we'll call them Side A--rely completely on Ad hominem:

"I've transitioned. I'm a woman. Therefore, you're wrong."

Both sides have made fallible appeals to authority, but side A has based their entire argument on things that Harry Benjamin said 60 years ago (and only PARTS of what he said, because others on Side B have brought up other Harry Benjamin quotes that have been dismissed because they disagree with Side A) or things they've written in their blogs. Nothing recent. There have been claims of 'unpublished' studies that will blow the lid off of all of it... but that's so incredibly ridiculous, it doesn't even deserve my attention.

This is also an appeal to tradition, which is also a logical fallacy.

Not that new is better... however, when Gender science has overwhelmingly supported the assertion that gender is a spectrum and not a binary, its no longer an appeal to Novelty to say that a new study says this... ALL the studies seem to say that gender is NOT a binary.

Sex may be a binary, but gender is not.

Sex is merely parts of the body. Therefore someone transitioning--someone transgender--can say their gender is female. They can't say their SEX is female if they still have a penis, but their gender certainly is. Just as yours was--side A--before you transitioned fully through surgery. When you could afford it. Therefore you are committing special pleading to assert what was not true for you (because you made the transition SO EARLY) must be true for today's folk with GID. What about folk who existed before GID and SRS? There must not have been any 'True Transsexuals' then, right?

Both of you have used Appeal to Ridicule to a ridiculous degree, so I won't even bother. You BOTH seem to be relying on that as much as I rely on the bus system to get me to campus. Which is why so many of these 400+ comments have been TOSed!

Side A uses biased samples to prove their point. Their own blogs, their born-lady friends, and on the flip side--combined with the fallacy of composition, spotlight and guilt by association--try to prove their points by saying 'this certain transgender person has these problems, therefore all transgender people are screwed up, therefore all of them must be wrong, therefore I must be right."

Above all, 'straw man' and personal attacks have been prevalent on both sides, but whenever Side B comes up with scientific proof to back up their points, Side A's only defense HAD BEEN PERSONAL ATTACKS! All that does to unaffiliated observers is move them closer to Side B. It PROVES you have nothing to back up your claims.

Ultimately, the opinion of Side A comes down to pure spite. They've proven it time and time again in almost everything said here. I don't know from what the spite springs, but spite is not EVIDENCE. Spite is a form of...


Oh yeah, hate. Hate is not a legitimate platform to stand on.

If you can't prove your point without personal attacks or faulty logic than you can't prove your point.

And you haven't proven your point.

So, please, Side A. I don't care if you hate Transgender people or not. But don't pretend like they're discriminating against you by their very existence, and that we're discriminating against you by not jumping on your hate bandwagon. You're wrong. You're hateful. You've been proven so hundreds of times on this thread. Take it elsewhere.

You lose.

In what way do they threaten you, Leigh?
Are you so insecure in your identity as a woman that their mere existence, their claim to the espirit feminine somehow cheapens your own?

Is this why a certain number of post ops are so threatened by women of any kind of history who fail to adhere to the old rigid caricature of a woman that Dr Benjamin defined decades ago?

Can you all please disengage? This whole incessant battle seems predicated upon inescurities that drive everything yet are never discussed.

So, there you have it. With one comment, a a gay male dismisses an entire party's gender debate position...asserting the bigot/hate argument.

Did anyone expect anything less?

Not me.

And, it won't change a thing. All that type of attitude does is harden our resolve.

Oh God, you're right. All your sides' logical fallacies are MY fault because I'm a man!

I really, really, REALLY want this thing to stop. But if it is finally going to get somewhere, maybe we could all consider whether certain distinctions can be usefully made.
Is it useful to distinguish between 2 classes, traditionally labelled transsexual and transgender on the grounds of (1) degree of narrative choice and/or (2) the extremity of the gender asymetry?
It seems perfectly obvious that conflating these with performative markers such as surgery or non-transgressive behaviour is an absolutely ridiculous activity. But are there real underlying distinctions that might desirably be made sans such markers ?
Dyss, for example, states a willingness to accept hormone treatment as some kind of demarcation, but what really are the principles that could usefully apply? Can transexuality not have ludic elements, and must transgender imply a lack of compulsion? Does the notion of gender spectrum necessarily negate the possibility of an extreme gender shift quantumly affecting cognitive / emotional structures.
These do seem to me to constitute real questions that on basic levels affect our narrative discourse as a community, and constitute part of the material of everyday interaction.
Answers anyone?

Why do we need to redefine "transsexual" in the first place?

Because knowledge and language change, and nothing is immune from the process of redefinition. Now I would love to see a reasonable case made that might distinguish between transsexual and transgender. Maybe one could reasonably state that the one relates primarily to the human operating system and the other to the programming. A hard and fast distinction may not be theoretically easy to maintain, but it would seem to reflect a practical set of perceptions within the gender variant community and link with medical treatments. I personally feel that a case made along these lines might at least move the debate on to more fruitful areas than constantly dragging in Harry Benjamin, surgery, performative behaviour norms or questioning the political agenda that may or may not accompany the author of any particular point of view.
And if you really do believe in a case along these lines, surely you must believe it can be put without this constant confrontation that totally detracts from it in many people’s eyes.

I find it interesting that Harry Benjamin's opinions on these matters are deeply respected and yet, Harry Benjamin is a man.

The latter part of this thread has focused almost exclusively upon who is "officially" a transsexual and who isn't. A person who is transsexual can be either a man or a woman and yet, those who are men are apparently disqualified from participating in this conversation. Does this exclusion somehow extend to transsexual men, as well?

If people are truly concerned over interference from members outside of the group in question, then perhaps only the opinions of those inside the group should qualify. Oddly enough, folks keep on referencing research which is conducted largely by people who are neither transsexual nor transgender. How does that work?

Most peculiar circumstances are these.


That this thread is still going on is beyond sad.

That the "differences", which are embodied in the terms themselves, are being debated ludicrous.

Sex refers to primary sexual characteristics, you know, do you have an innie or an outie.

If you do not correct the body, never intend to do so (or have a compelling wish to do so but it is not a practical reality for the FtMs) then you never "trans" or change/cross sex. ergo, you simply are not a trans-sexual.

If your internal sense of being a male or female is fixed, as it is for all non trans people and the classic transsexed, you do not change/cross your gender, hence you are not transgender.

The meanings are within the words themselves, "refining" them is worst than dishonest, it's deceit.

Phil, you brought the male chauvinist type comments upon yourself when you sat in judgment of any of the discussions that took place and declared who was a bigot, who was a woman and when you asked that horridly offensively, misogynistic styled question in the first place. Own it.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 10, 2009 2:13 AM

Trans also means not just crossing or changing but going beyond, supersceding, transcending. Yep my oxford concise actually uses the term transcending to describe one of the functions of trans.

And if we actually count sex-based neurology, not psychology but neurology, as sex characteristics are they primary or secondary? Are the definitions of primary and secondary sex characteristics still valid and if so why or are they mere archaic remnants of our repressedly sex-obssessed cultural history?

I take it though you now see the sense in the terms i suggested make most sense of Cisgender Transsexual and Cissexual Transgender, along with Cissexual Cisgender etc etc?

Also why is it that you only count as transsexual if you alter primary sex characteristics but if you alter secondary that doesn't count at all? Is that not a rather iffy level of either/or discounting that some do in fact change only secondary sexual characteristics are still changing sexual characteristics?

And as gays and lesbians may have cross-sexed neurology doesn't that factor into this whole terminology issue? Suddenly sexuality and sex and gender are coming up as hardwired and most importantly realted pieces of brain.

Playing the gay card? Sorry but that still doesn't give you a pass on your misogyny. Men still need to be respectful of women whether they are straight or gay.

And enough with the "who is a woman" crap. This repeated redirection from the real issue is just disingenuous.

People here are equivocating the "woman argument" for the "who is a real transsexual" argument. If you want to argue who is a woman under the law, you should talk to the mainstream. Obviously trying to beat us about the head with transgender dogma isn't getting you anywhere. If you want to argue about who is a real transsexual, you need to convince scientists and doctors that crossdressing is a birth condition.

The point some of us are trying to make is that the less-than-honest activities of people with regard to the public discussion, and the law are damaging. Not only to real transsexual-born people, but to those in the gay lobby and elsewhere who are trying to manipulate the situation in their own favor.

The public will not accept that crossdressers are the same as women. Using people like me as a battering ram will not work. It will only destroy us. The sooner people see that outrageous behavior for the crass political move that it is, the sooner things get better for everyone.

battybattybats battybattybats | October 7, 2009 9:49 PM

Being respectful means things like not making ad hominem attacks right? But it doesn't mean letting fallacious arguments pass. There is a difference between the two.

As for doctors and scientists.. we have a quote attributed to one of the CURRENT experts who provides us with the measurable biological evidence for the Transsexual phenomena being biologically caused saying that the ENTIRE Gender Spectrum is likely biologically caused.

With the Australian 'Transsexual Gene' discovery and all the biological evidence thus far accrued including the cross-sex brain difference evidence found in Cissexual GAYS and LESBIANS (Just how does your side deal with that?) just applying the same tests on the broader transgender population in comparison to transsexual and totally cis groups in a decent comparative study will determine whether the same phenomena cause the lot. Proper EVIDENCE is what convinces scientists, and any doctor worthy of their title... sorry psychology but neuroscience always trumps you.

And as for the public, acceptance is spreading quickly. There is a generational tsunami heading for society. With support on such 'controvertial' issues like same-sex marriage in Australia at 75% of the new generation and it's even higher on federal GLBT antidiscrimination legislation. With indiginous people reclaiming the sexuality and sex and gender diverse traditions, with the human-rights principles totally in favour of S&GD rights (see the Yogyakarta Principles ) change is coming. And not predicated on co-opting transsexuals or neuroscience but on the new generation increasingly valuing personal truth and the freedom to be yourself.

I'm not going to get into this whole thing. I makes my head hurt. Why because people are people, with hearts minds and feelings each and everyone of them. All these hearts, minds and feelings need to be accepted, embraced, and integrated so that we can get on with more important concerns:

Like How do you get exiled from Iowa?

I mean really, "Oh I'm an Iowan living in Exile in New Jersey! I know all my paperwork says that I'm a Jersey person, but it's only because I have to live and work somehow. I'm really honestly and Iowan."

How does one get exiled from Iowa (or any other state for that matter) and how is it done? I'm asking because this fascinates me. I read that comment above and about lost my water laughing until it hit me. Forced to live in exile in Jersey? Wow, I had to do that for a while. Live in Jersey, so I have a great deal of sympathy for this person. I'm not going to sleep with them, so I don't really care what their bits are. As to how they choose to "self identify" I will respect it. I won't embrace it as a label for me, but I've never been big on labels to start with. I mean I have a label that I'm fine with: Samantha or Sam. Not because one has more of a gender associated with it than another, but because I'm okay with having my name shortened.

And I don't like (or avoid) people based on Gender, but on who they are. Obnoxious, needy, unstable people I have utterly nothing in common with, well I don't hang around them willingly. In short I do not suffer fools gladly. Otherwise I'm really easy to get along with.

But exiled from Iowa? Wow, that's harsh, and I want to know how to avoid that. I am not not, nor have I ever been and Iowan, but I have friends who are, and I like to visit Iowa. I'd hate to be exiled from it forever, that would break my heart and I don't even live there.