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View Diary: Male to Female in 3 Years: A Video (123 comments)

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  •  If we were where we should be (19+ / 0-)

    then I would agree with you.

    But we're not. We're in a context where most people viewing this diary are in the first stages of learning about trans people. HRs aren't appropriate for comments made in good faith.

    There are some important things to be learned from this thread. In summary:

    1) To "pass", in a trans-related context, means to be generally seen by others as the gender in which we prefer to be perceived, and not to be 'read' as trans.

    (Both parts can be important, with different weightings for trans men and women. Trans men often have trouble communicating that we wish to be seen as men at all. Trans women usually have little trouble conveying their identity, but are much more likely to be perceived as transgender, with accompanying stigma.)

    2) The word "pass" is as fraught with complications and political nuances in this context as it is in the racial and sexual orientation contexts where it is also used, and should generally be avoided when talking about specific individuals other than oneself.

    3) Trans people who do generally "pass" enjoy a certain degree of privilege post-transition because we are, in a sense, mostly invisible. We're less likely to be subject to casual discrimination or violence (but are probably at the same risk of intimate partner violence).

    4) On the other hand, trans people who "pass" post-transition are often the same people who were unable to "pass" (in the more widely used sense of hiding our identity/difference) pre-transition.

    5) All of this is terribly complicated and most of us would very much prefer to live in a world where we're not judged (much less put in danger) based on how well we can make our appearance conform to some unwritten, ill-defined set of arbitrary gender standards.

    6) On the other hand, given the realities of the world we actually live in, trans women in particular must often consider and discuss the importance of "passing" and the implications of "passing privilege," both in personal and academic terms.

    These are things that allies should know, but won't know if we shut down all discussion.

    "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

    by kyril on Wed Jan 09, 2013 at 01:47:41 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

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