Isis recently modeled political shirts that read, “Legalize Gay” (a play on “Legalize LA”) and “Gay O.K.” (a play on “A OK”) and I know what you’re thinking… You’re thinking that it’s cool that an out transgender woman is able to support one of the many political causes she cares about. So, what would you think if I told you that your reaction is wrong; moreover, what if I told you that you’ve just helped oppress Isis and every transgender woman out there? Furthermore, what if I told you that the only way you could make your thought crime right is to only use the language Ashley Love allows and to turn your back on half of modern transgender history? I know what you’d say because it’s the same thing I say to myself every time I read something Ashley Love has written.
Love’s 1-woman “organization” MAGNET released a McCarthy-like indictment of American Apparel and GLAAD for supposedly duping Isis into calling herself a gay man which is, of course, all part of the ongoing conspiracy against transsexual people. Love asserts that when Isis King put on a “Gay is OK” shirt, she was inadvertently calling herself a gay man. Yup. That’s right. All you cisgender women out there, don’t wear anything with “legalize gay” on it because apparently doing so means that you’re saying that you’re a gay man. All you heterosexual folks out there, beware; you need to be mindful because visibly supporting gay rights apparently equals telling others you’re gay. In Love’s universe, if you visibly engage in political speech which supports full 14th amendment rights for non-heterosexuals, you’re actually calling yourself gay:
[GLAAD] inadvertently went against their mission statement by validating the transphobic misconception that Isis and other women like her are “gay” males, instead of who they really are – women, period. The constant misgendering of women of transsexual experience by GLAAD and other ‘LGBT’ groups derails accurate education on transsexualism and must stop.
Ashley has created a FaceBook group of some of her supporters (and a lot of gawkers) in an attempt to make the unreasoned ad populum argument that American Apparel and GLAAD colluded to make Isis out to be a gay man, that transsexuals as a whole are offend when we are referred to as being “transgender” and that GLAAD is forcing the media to refer to all transsexuals as only being “transgender” (which is a lie, GLAAD does no such thing). Instead of doing the work of making a reasoned argument, Love hopes that you’ll take her fact assertions on faith alone because it might seem as if others share in her dogma.
In search of more people to join her FaceBook group to make it seem as if lots of people believe in the anti-transsexual conspiracy gospel Love preaches, she recently had a misinformation piece published on the Washington Blade’s website:
It’s unethical to enforce sociopolitical opinions onto another group’s legitimate medical condition, such as how transgender umbrella theorists started doing in the mid-1990s to transsexualism. Our patients’ rights are not a political bargaining chip for gender deconstructionism activists to appropriate.
In theory, the coalition known as LGBTTIQQ is different communities aligning themselves to accomplish a common goal. But what happens when that coalition’s top priority ranks the needs of a particular, more privileged group over the more discriminated against groups? An uprising is what happens. The “Transsexual Spring,” the widespread and growing resistance against misrepresentation, calls for major reform in education concerning our birth challenge. Our health care, medical-based narrative and social well being won’t be compromised or worked against by notions of pro-segregation, malpractice, history revisionism and the tolerance of sex discrimination. We hope our educational campaign will spark dialogue that leads to honesty, healing and harmony. Our much larger goal is promoting media depictions with messages that affirm, rather than misgender.
You wrote: “Our much larger goal is promoting media depictions with messages that affirm, rather than misgender.”
Misgender? Did you just say you’re against misgendering people? I’m really surprised to learn that your goal is to stop the practice of misgendering since you engage in that behavior yourself. Or, did I misunderstood you when you asserted that people like me have a male psyche?
For example, this Spring a few self-promoting and self-aggrandizing “transgender” bloggers, authors and “gender outlaw” entertainers (who actually financially and professionally profit by enforcing transgender socio-politics and umbrella-ism theory) are obsessing over how to stop the inevitable transsexual liberation by creating petty drama, speculating, concocting ‘out of this world’ and laughable history revisionism, taking actions and quotes out of context, presuming to know one’s intentions as if they are telepathic, unrobing and degrading the bodies of women born with transsexualism and behaving like unstable, over compulsive and anti-social pesonalites, fueled by their amazing male egos and desire to get attention, although it’s negative attention. – Ashley “I hate citing evidence” Love, May 6, 2012
Unethical? Did you just say that, “It’s unethical to enforce sociopolitical opinions onto another group’s legitimate medical condition…“? Oh, you mean like what you’re doing to Isis King right now?
Isis King: I even try to stay away from “transsexual” because I still have my own little things with the word.
Janet Mock: What is that? I want to explore that.
Isis King: I just… it’s kinda like the whole “tranny” thing, I just feel like when someone says transsexual, it’s so much negativity that comes with it. So, I just prefer “transgender.”
Janet Mock: Well, yeah. And of course you have the right to self-identify how you choose to self-identify.
Isis King: Yeah…
Janet Mock: I feel like “transsexual” to me makes it only about the body and the transition, whereas “transgender,” I feel, speaks more to the entire essence of what politically what our bodies say.1
Love, STOP using Isis King to promote your deluded2 version of reality! Let Isis speak for herself. Stop pretending that you are the arbitrator of self-identity for transsexuals. I am a transsexual who is part of the transgender community. When you refer to me, Isis, Janet or the MAJORITY of transsexuals, you should state that we are either transsexuals who are part of the transgender community or that we are simply transgender and/or trans (with an * if you feel you REALLY need to). That is, unless you want to, by your own standards, be unethical. I’ve never once referred to you as being a transgender person, Love because I – unlike you – will respect the chosen self-identity of trans folk. Why do you choose to disrespect King’s self-identity? How can you feel justified in using her to support your sociopolitical opinions at her expense when you’ve just acknowledged – in black and white – that doing so is unethical?
Even though you KNOW it’s a lie, I see that you’re still gleefully pushing the 1990s as your date for transgender being an umbrella term. Ashley, that makes you a demonstrable you’re a liar. Furthermore, your own hubris has blinded you to the double standards you seem all too happily to ignore:
Why didn’t you bother to mention the FACT that Isis (like me) self-identifies and being transgender? Would that truth have been a little too inconvenient for your deluded reality? Ashley, your so-called “transsexual spring” is a fantasy. Almost all TS Separatist leaders have moved on with their lives, the historical narrative you continue to push has been thoroughly debunked and practically all trans stars (you seem to hope to influence) continue to self-identify as being transgender. The only folks leading your “transsexual spring” are the fringe folks like yourself, Just Jenifer and the folks at Gender Reality. You know, those “ethical” folks who, like yourself, get their jollies by misgendering people in lieu of presenting actual evidence-based arguments. Look around you because you’re in good company, Love.
Ask the transsexuals, intersex people and other trans folk you were screaming at – LITERALLY SCREAMING AT – (to the point that several people thought you might become violent) during the Philadelphia Trans Health Conference what they think of you. I couldn’t help but note that you chose to not mention those altercations in your blog account of the conference. Was it because you knew that if you honestly discussed your obdurate behavior people might think less of you?
Here’s Isis King and Angelica Ross talking about what they think of you.3 Please note that they make many of the very same points I do. Consider this a reality check, Love.[soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/51839580″ iframe=”true” /]
1.) These statements were made in a video conversation between Isis King and Janet Mock.
2.) “Delusion” is used in the strict dictionary definition of the word and is not an ad-hom attack:
3.) These statements were made during the July 1, 2012 Miss Ross LIVE! Show
4.) I’ve used “colonize” in the title of this article in an ironic way. The whole “colonization” meme is, IMHO, trite, overused and seems to have become the hallmark of hyperbole.