Serena Freewomyn

Better Know a Contributor: Bruce Parker

Filed By Serena Freewomyn | June 08, 2008 7:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: Bruce Parker

Editor's Note: You've seen Steven Colbert's "Better Know a Lobbyist," but our version is so much gayer! Each weekend, we spotlight a different TBP contributor. In case you've missed any of our previous interviews, I've got links at the end of the post.

This week we're shining the spotlight on our very own Birthday Boy, Bruce Parker. Bruce was raised by his mama and he's proud of his southern accent. After graduating from Antioch College, Bruce put his education to work as the Advocacy Coordinator for the Indiana Transgender Rights Advocacy Alliance. He is currently the Director of Curriculum Development for Transyouth Family Advocates, and working on his PhD at Louisiana State University.

Two things you should know about Bruce: He, can't, master, the, use, of, commas. Oh, and he's a racist. Just ask him. He'll tell you! Follow me after the jump for more juicy tidbits. And be sure to leave him a birthday wish (or spanking) in the comments section.

1. How did you get involved with TBP?
I was working as advocacy coordinator for the Indiana Transgender Rights Advocacy Alliance, and serving as their representative to the Indianapolis Indiana Equality group that was working on the passage of an inclusive human rights ordinance. During that time, I connected with Bil and Jerame as great allies, amazing friends, and lots of other complicated things that we don't really like to talk about very often. If you get Bil on a high energy day he will tell you the entire story.

At that time ,Bil was having a hard time finding transgender people in Indiana who would blog and he asked me to start writing on the blog to focus on transgender issues. For whatever reason, inspite of the massive amount of transgender participation on the blog, he has decided to keep me around. I am thrilled to be involved and believe in the Project's mission of generating dialogue as an essential social change.

2. What was your coming out experience like?
I realized I was queer when I had a wet dream about a boy named Toby in seventh grade. Instead of dating him, I went after his girlfriend and ended up dating her. I never struggled with who I was on a very deep level, and slowly told people over years and years. At the point that it became clear to my mother, she threw me out. We worked it out over a few months and she is supportive now.

Regarding coming out, the biggest challenge is how to come out as being romantically involved and primarily attracted to transgender men. How do you bring that up in conversation? And if I don't come out about it, I feel immensely guilty, like I am using some sort of privilege to keep myself safe.

3. What's your wildest dream?
I have no idea how to answer this question. My wildest sexual fantasy right now probably involves a few cast members of the L-Word and a hot drunken night. Is that an okay answer?

4. If you could meet anyone, past or present, who would it be?
Hillary Clinton or Larry Kramer - They both stand up for what they believe in even, if everyone else thinks that they are nuts.

And Stevie Nicks - Who doesn't want to meet Stevie Nicks?

5. What book has had the biggest impact on your life?
The Last Herald Mage Trilogy, by Mercedes Lackey, gave me a way to understand my sexuality at a young age by combining well written fantasy with a queer main character. It saved my life at a time when I couldn't figure out who I was and what I wanted out of life.

6. Favorite late night snack
Is it too crude to say anything eaten in bed with a hot bottom? I tend to love fresh baked cookies before bed. It really is a terrible idea, but it seems like it is sticking!

Check out previous interviews with TBP Contributors
Alex Blaze
Don Sherfick
Sara Whitman
Brent Hartinger
Jessica Hoffman
Cathy Renna
Waymon Hudson
Kate Clinton

Leave a comment

We want to know your opinion on this issue! While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

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Bruce, are you racist?

I wouldn't normally ask, but Serena told me to!

Bruce is racist. I can vouch.

But every white person is racist, right Bruce? :)

Bil, if you've ever heard the Avenue Q soundtrack, it's not just white people . . . everyone's a little bit racist sometimes.

Hi Bruce and Happy Birthday! I hope you get plenty of snacks.

Bruce Parker Bruce Parker | June 8, 2008 11:47 PM

I am one of those crazy people who think that the white society that we grow up in makes all white people racist. I would argue that it is a central component of whiteness. I wouldn't go so far as to say everyone is racist. I think we lose something about the realities of oppression and the history of white on not white racism by brushing it off as hey they are racist as well.

I think it makes us uncomfortable to be told that we are racist.

I think all white people are racist. I am sure most of you don't agree.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 9, 2008 12:39 AM

Bruce, I think that all people stereotype other people, rather than go crazy trying to deal with all other people as individuals. Along those lines I see the validity of what you are saying.

I love debating Bruce's theory - even though I realize he's 99% correct.

I love you, Ashke...

Hey Bruce, I'm with you about folks to meet 'n why...absolutely both Hillary 'n Larry stand up for their beliefs.

*I wanna meet Stevie for other reasons, mostly lustful.* :wink

Happy Birthday, Bruce!

Bruce, I think it all depends on how you define racism. According to Peggy MacIntosh's definition, racism involves institutionalized privilege. So in her view (and I think in your view), only white people can be racist (at least in American society), because we live in a society that privileges whiteness.

I think that people of color can certainly be prejudiced, but I don't think that they can be racist. Because I tend to agree with MacIntosh's definition. I was quoting Avenue Q because I think it's funny.

Happy "belated" birthday Bruce! Hope you had a good celebration!

I did get to meet Hillary - twice - when she came to Indy campaigning. It was wonderful - she shook my hand both times and I got her autograph the second time. She's a real amazing lady! I do hope you get to meet her!

I'm pretty sure my husband would love to meet Stevie Nicks too.