It’s pretty fucked that as a society we haven’t gotten to the point yet where we can just accept people for who they know themselves to be. Its also pretty fucked that there is systematic denial of all interior experience and that the only things that are seen as true are those that are objectively observed by people in privileged positions.
Now, I have listened to Dan Savage for several years now (that makes me feel old) and never felt he was being transphobic. Then BAM Dan Savage is a transphobe is suddenly common knowledge among all my friends! How could this be? had my cis-privilege helped me over look all of his glaring faults?
Reading his response pretty much convinced me that my initial impression was right and that Dan Savage is decisively not a transphobe.
Go glitter bomb Lierre Keith or some actual transphobes, I am sure you can find lots of targets.
Please tell me that you are not serious.
But Dan Savage responds to claims by saying “No I’m not!”? OBVIOUSLY HE’S NOT A CIS PRIVILEGED ASSHOLE.
Dan Savage may have said some problematic things but that doesn’t make him a transphobe. Do you know why not? Because he responds to the criticism and stops it.
Furthermore, Dan Savage said a whole lot more in this article than “IM NOT A TRANSPHOBE”. Let me point out several pieces of supporting evidence he gives which I find quite convincing:
- He actively tries to not use transphobic language and make some attempt to call folks who do out
- He actively supports transfolk by regularly including them and giving them space on his show to articulate their experiences
- He addresses trans issues in a sympathetic way, since 1999, far before a vast part of the LGBT community had really thought about what that T meant.
- He raises money for trans victims of hate crimes and discrimination, going out of his way to leverage his popularity (that probably exists to some extent due to his white, male, cis privilege) to address trans issues.
To me, Dan Savage is not an enemy and nothing I have heard from folks has actually convinced me in the slightest that Dan Savage is. Even fucknodansavage.tumblr.com
Dan Savage is not a good enemy for transfolk because he does honestly seem to be trying his best to be an ally. Any examples pointed to to show he is a transphobe need show that he is being transphobic and it is not just a well meaning ally saying something that can be (or very occasionally) be construed as denying the lived experience of transfolk.
There are lots of real enemies who really need to get glitterbombed. These people don’t spend their time trying to be allies and actively go around spewing vitriolic hatred (hence my comment about Lierre Kieth). If people need glitter bomb targets, don’t target allies. That is not how people learn.
GAH… this is pissing me off so much.
OH LOOK I PISSED OFF ANOTHER CISSEXIST PERSON!
A) You aren’t pissing me off, the lack of any desire to engage in discussion is.
B) the whole epistemic privilege thing can be really problematic, this doesn’t mean I am saying privileged folks should always have an equal part of the discussion or that we shouldn’t attempt to bring in viewpoints that aren’t represented. You can find that whole rant here: http://walmas.tumblr.com/post/12548364306/epistemicprivilege
C) Assuming epistemic privilege let me quote an honest to god trans person who agrees with me (which, as my points seem perfectly rational and flipping me off doesn’t negate this, i imagine is not an uncommon phenomenon
And of course there’s still some room for improvement in how you talk about trans issues, but you know that, and it doesn’t detract from all the real and concrete support you give to the community. So, thanks again for all your hard work.
-Wendell writing to Dan Savage.
-Wendell writing to Dan Savage.