I used to respect Calpernia and Andrea until now. Absolutely disgusting attack against a budding trans journalist. Especially since she just made the Top 100 trans. Is that what you two meanies are mad about? You don’t deserve to even be in any of those winner’s presence.
So is there anyone slinging shit in here that has a BoingBoing account that predates this article.
Just the same ole shit throwers running around the net throwing shit.
This is slowly happening to every community on the net.
Well, this just reinforces my sense of the continuing irrelevance of Andrea James. [Edit: Reminds me, I should really add a “no Andrea James” filter to my Boing Boing feed.]
So I’m curious, what exactly makes Calpernia and Andrea mean? Are you also commenting on Parker Molloy’s article calling her out for misgendering Calpernia in her article? I wonder if you also consider Parker Molloy a ‘meany’ as well…
Really? Struck me as a valid point that someone who self-identifies as a journalist should probably know better than to profess actual hatred (at least in such a public way) for the subject of what purports to be a journalistic article. I’m not a remotely frequent reader (in fact, the last time I had occasion to read The Advocate was probably when Megan Mullally came out as bisexual in… what, 1999?), but I assume a certain amount of advocacy journalism is to be expected in a publication like The Advocate (duh).
Anyway, what struck me was that in her actual article, Molloy went out of her way to maintain at least a fig leaf of journalistically-appropriate neutral language. I mean, look at the phrasing: She begins with “Last night’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race featured a contest many on Twitter are calling transphobic.” And then she concludes with “To date, RuPaul has not responded to The Advocate’s requests to clarify his position on derogatory words used in his show.” The article, all by itself, serves as a fairly concise and elegant condemnation of what RuPaul did.
But the “I fucking hate RuPaul” tweet lets all the air out of any sort of journalistic integrity Molloy might have sought to display (if indeed she cared about such a thing, being “budding” and all). Completely outside any discussion of internecine squabbling within the trans community, it seems counterproductive to me to so publicly denigrate RuPaul (most especially as one of the “very few people I truly hate”) on the same day you write that article about him. Counterproductive, unprofessional, and utterly contrary to any sort of journalistic standard. If nothing else, the intersecting subset of Advocate.com readers and followers of Molloy’s tweets will be substantially greater than zero, and rather than giving the impression she’s more-or-less dispassionately reporting on other people’s disapproval of RuPaul’s behavior, she’s now giving the strong impression that the article stems from her own dislike of RuPaul. That’s going to undermine the weight of her article’s message. Rookie mistake at best, and indicative of why journalism’s recent addiction to Twitter is “unhealthy.”
Dana_Taylor, kindleaire, jesstify, alice_i_cecile, and Rebecca_Juro are all accounts that have been created in the last two hours, and have posted only here; all other accounts that commented before I made this post appear to predate the article significantly. The new accounts, however, appear to have posted the majority of comments in the thread, and almost all of the most vitriolic posts come from some subset of them (this is not to say that all of them are posting vitriol, however; some of them are posting reasonable comments).
I think there’s really misdirected rage at Molloy here. You can’t take a journalist’s off the cuff remark on Twitter as just slacktivism. And seriously, I don’t care how much much good Ru Paul’s done for the gay community, the things he does and says is downright infuriating.
I’m cis-…ish. Gender queer and dysphoric. So I’m not speaking out of turn when I say that the outlandish style of drag that Ru Paul does is horribly negative and holds back the narrative. When I try to have discussions about gender identity, that’s the filter people see it through. Further more, the coupling of trans woman = gay male just makes things -worse-.
I feel like there’s a lot of projection here. Yes, slactivism is extremely bad. SJWs are bad. But in context of what Malloy wrote, and the fact that she’s a journalist working on this issue? Cut her some slack. If you’re angry at SJWs, go after SJWs. Don’t go after someone who’s actively trying and working. Don’t eat the young.
It’s almost like they are fans of someone and read a tweet and came here ready to reply without even having read the article.
Amazing how the article was posted hours before they all signed up and then boom they all signed up within minutes of each other.
Anyone feel like finding the tweet that triggered the shit storm.
@rider Yes, how dare people come here and want to voice opinions, it’s just awful. They should stay on their “tumblrs” and “livejournals” and “twitters” and stay away from good decent folks, like those of us with boing boing accounts dating all the way back to the hallowed days at the beginning of time in 2013.
Honestly, if I thought Andrea James mattered, I’d be more upset by this train wreck of a “feature”. It’s nearly awful in all the ways. As it is though… meh. She’s just so not worth the blood pressure.
I’m way more concerned about the fact that what she and her friends post as advice still comes up at/near the top when people go looking for resources.
Every subculture has its fundies, its tribal police all to eager to otherize those whose values may not be identical to theirs. I haven’t found the trans community to be any exception, in my limited XP.
@Daedalus I think the difference here is that you won’t find agreement as to who’s being the fundamentalist here. =p
I think James’ point about straight versus lesbian trans women is interesting. While I certainly don’t agree that trans lesbians all benefit from male privilege, it does appear (from the outside) that the significant rift forming amid trans women activists falls cleanly between lesbian/queer and straight.
(edited to add: I don’t know Ms. James’ or Ms. Addams’ stated orientations, so I’m willing to be corrected here)
Disdain for drag in general and RuPaul in particular has occasionally flared up from folks who transition from male to female with the zeal of a religious convert. … The internet allows these shut-ins to spend their waking lives online, agreeing with like-minded victim cultists who share their views of acceptable transgender thought and behavior. These trans folks have developed their own pseudo-academic jargon like cis-het, which means “cisgender heterosexual,” which itself means “non-transgender straight person.” Most trans folks throwing around cis-het would have been labeled cis-het themselves a few years ago.
What the hell?
Why are so many of Andrea’s posts have to be so divisive? Why perpetuate the shit-slinging? My friends who post on Facebook about “trans” and “cis” are now “shut-in victim cultists”?
My take away from this thread, as an LGBT ally, is that there is a portion of the LGBT community that needs to get its collective head out of its ass, no matter which side of the above debate they’re coming from. This infighting is NOT helping the cause. The fact that anyone actually spends any time thinking about RuPaul’s impact on trans issues is kind of astonishing to me. At the end of the day, does it really freaking matter what one, one individual in the LGBT community says or does, that it sets off an apparently somewhat significant portion of the greater community to such a degree? The community needs to stop bitching and moaning about people using words in ways they don’t personally agree with, and perhaps put more energy into pushing a positive agenda and policy. I just don’t get the sense that RuPaul using the words “tranny” or “shemale” is really holding back trans rights.
Many black people call each other nigger all the time. As a white guy, I do not use the word when referring to people. And I realize that’s just how it is, and it really doesn’t make much difference to me. I don’t think about the black community in different terms because some people in that community use a particular word in a way that is not socially acceptable for me to do. I’m OK with that. I get the nuance of the situation. The LGBT community that gets soooo worked up over what strikes me as an analogous issue would do well to more or less move on, as the black community has done with the word nigger.
There was a thread a while back regarding Chelsea Manning, and because I was trying to find a pronoun to refer to Manning that worked to describe both him as Bradley and she as Chelsea simultaneously, I used the phrase “s/he” as essentially an abbreviation. I was jumped on and attacked SO QUICKLY and in such certain terms I was quite surprised. I had no idea this was an offensive term to some people. I kind of thought that on a “generally progressive” site as bb, people would kind of give you the benefit of the doubt, maybe assume you’re not out to offend the LGBT community, and just kind of said “you know, it’s totally alright to just say her, even if you’re referring to Chelsea back when she was referring to herself as Bradley, prior to coming out as trans.” And I would have been like, Oh, cool, OK, thanks for the tip! But after reading all of the above – sheesh, I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised at all, in fact it’s amazing I wasn’t flamed 100 times harder, when members of the LGBT say to one another “I fucking hate you and you should basically just die” over similar situations.
The problem is blogging shit flinggers live a delusional world where their personal shit flinging armies wait at their every world and make a loud but ultimately meaningless shirtstorms at the drop of a tweet.
Look at how many of them ran here instantly to start throwing.
These people talk past each other, form camps, and argue ideologies that have little to nothing to do with what is actually being presented.
I just had to smile at this particular typo, that brought to mind an explosion at an Ed Hardy factory.
It’s very simple.
You can reclaim slurs which target yourselves and target your community. You can’t reclaim slurs which target others. Same goes for s-word privileges as for n-word privileges. RuPaul cannot reclaim s------. Only trans womyn/women, and especially trans womyn/women who are in sex work or have been in sex work can reclaim s------.
It’s perfectly legit to call RuPaul out for this.
It’s not legit to hate on drag queens, or say that drag queens can’t be trans womyn/women or vice-versa.
I can guarantee that to probably the majority of people who are not LGBT, and even a good amount who are, the often very subtle nuances between some trans-identified terms and others are lost. A lot of people might derogatorily call a gay male who dresses in (traditionally) women’s clothing and has a somewhat feminine demeanor a “shemale,” which to my mind means that someone of that description can reclaim it, even if they are not, in fact, transsexual.
But hell, this is not my fight to get involved with I guess. I’ll let the LGBT community duke it out amongst themselves.
I find this article uncomfortable. I am not really that aware of either this author, or the woman she’s slamming. Mostly because I am tired of watching fights in the trans* community.
It does bring up my own experiences in the trans* community where I have been witness to the incredible divisiveness of it all. Transgender women, transgender men, straight, gay, non binary presentation, truscum, etc.
I cringe at the part in the article that compares the author’s target to a TERF. TERF’s are terrible. That’s terrible to imply any transgender woman is like a TERF.
As for RuPaul? I want to like him. I get that he’s made a lot of contributions to the gay scene. However, using crappy language makes me cringe every time I see it. Times have changed, and he really should get with the current decade here. It’s not cool to use that terminology.
The other point in this article I objected to was the implication that if you are new to the trans* scene you don’t have as much a right to discuss your experiences. That if you don’t come at being transgender in the way prescribed in the article, then you don’t get as much validity. There is already a culture at large telling us that we don’t have validity. I don’t think we should, as a community try to police each other, demanding credentials, or years in the trenches before we will listen to each other.