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  •  I started to reply last night (5+ / 0-)

    but was going down too fast and bed won.  Organic chem this quarter (grad school prereq) has me rethinking our appropriation of cis (not really, but sorta) and this caught my eye.

    As a practical matter, I'll keep transphobia, just because we've invested in it at this point.  Which takes nothing from the essay or the point, I think...there is something quite specific for some folks.  However, I do think its different kinds of specific (though I have said a lot of this stuff before, repeating it anyway...)

    Some tiny fraction of the population -- my intuition is one over a power of three or higher denominator-- is really, deeply, irrationally offended at our existence, and will forget everything they've learned since preschool, including prohibitions against verbal and physical violence, at our mere existence.  They are very very rare but when they show up all bets are off.  

    A much bigger bunch are upset for personal reasons of investment, what I speak of lightly as how much they were beat on for gender inappropriate toys but really it is how much of their humanity they've sacrificed for their own gender and sometimes sexuality.  If you're a person who has paid dearly for a feminine, masculine, or non-trans queer identity (gay male, lesbian) then our existence is can be an affront to the dues you've paid.  "You can't do that!" seems to be the underlying plaint.  Guessing of course, but over a long long time that's my best guess.  This is a hard one to combat with a word, because on some level, they have a point -- even if it should be directed at themselves.

    And then there are just the righty purists and conformists, who see something that is formally disapproved of, outlier and other.  This overlaps with the above of course, but not always.

    I don't know if the above can be addressed via vocabulary.  We are very fractured as a community and often, in my experience, very bright folks, and we like words.  We like new words.  We're very keyed to the power of language.  As a result even things I like very much -- Serrano, or this -- don't get incorporated into my vocabulary.

    And on this comment of course, mileage really varies

    ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

    by jessical on Mon Jan 14, 2013 at 08:11:59 AM PST

    •  and because I can't leave well enough alone (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joy of Fishes, MercuryX23

      ...there is, worst of all, the cruelty we direct at ourselves.  In our own persons and in each other.  Because this is damn hard, and very little from the world tells us it is OK.  And while we may deny it, or tell ourselves that hey, we are OK it is that trans person over there who lacks the shiny self confidence...I think this is in some ways the most terrible and heartbreaking form of transphobia.  

      I hesitated to put this out there, because of course the story half my ever so enlightened friends tell over and over is about the self-hating trans person, as though it were a morality tale and we the sinners, and if we just liked ourselves better we would not be trans in the first place, right?  And so when someone says something like this, a trans person, it is just validation to their smug vileness (and hey, I love some of these people who say this stuff -- and I will let smug and vile stand).  But it is the most important one I think, that when enough hands turn against us, we turn against ourselves.  

      And to bring it back to the topic...I guess I want a word that has the possibility of redemption in it (yep, we like words).  Redemption for the people who start out freaky and mean and foolish and end up being allies, "brave as paladins and true".  And redemption for ourselves, when the world breaks us and the cruelest voices become, for a time, our own.

      ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

      by jessical on Mon Jan 14, 2013 at 03:00:34 PM PST

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