Fifteen Minutes To Fame: Trans Fundamentalism
…needs to die a swift death. Because the binarist, cissexist, “copy our oppressors” approach to supposedly liberating trans* people from oppression is not going to work. Given that this is exactly what transphobic radical feminists did, and we see how well it’s worked out for them, why are people…
The idea that an intersex, nonbinary trans woman of color can be accused of being “binarist” — by a white trans person like you no less — is beyond ridiculous. Especially when it’s blatantly obvious that you’re only using this to further your absurd and offensive argument that CAFAB trans people are not massively privileged over CAMAB trans people, and your further argument that CASAB should be kept secret in a debate about CASAB related privilege.
Declaring CASAB irrelevant when it in fact has significant relevance to the way one is treated by patriarchy (i.e. “shitty” or “shitty with a side of diarrhea sauce and a tall glass of salty lemonade”) is disingenuous.
No, it isn’t. Assumed CASAB has tremendous relevance but actual CASAB? No. Regardless of my CASAB, I am assumed to be CAFAB most of the time and so generally only get sexism and misogyny except when I’m assumed to be CAMAB when I get transmisogyny. Both happen to me. That is my experience of just being me.
So don’t tell me that my CASAB has significant relevance when people can’t even agree what my CASAB is. freedominwickedness and some other trans women have decided that I’m CAFAB while bugbrennan and others have decided that I’m CAMAB. I can’t help but notice that both groups have decided to assign me to the group of people they consider unnecessary to listen to. It’s self-serving while also making it clear that my CASAB is not some universally obvious fact to everyone.
That you can claim that CASAB has relevance to how society treats us means you believe that you and society can tell what everyone’s CASABs are with perfect accuracy. They can’t, as my and other peoples’ experiences demonstrate. I’m sorry that you have bought into the cissexist and transphobic belief that people’s CASABs are obvious to everyone, but they’re not. People assume a hell of a lot and treat people based on those assumptions. This fact is being lost in a binarist, absolutist argument of privilege and oppression, which erases me and everyone who has similar experiences to me (as everyone who has ever been passed as another sex/gender/CASAB does). While I understand (and agree with!) the complaints about people’s behaviour against trans women and those assumed to be trans women and otherwise CAMAB, this does not justify erasing people like me.
Yes, declaring CASAB irrelevant is disingenuous. Fortunately, THAT IS NOT THE ARGUMENT BEING MADE.
The argument being made is that assuming you know someones CASAB by their words alone is wrong. And I mean that as in factually wrong and ethically wrong.
The argument being made is that assuming you know someone’s gender based on what you assume is their CASAB is also wrong. Doing so is doing both you and the person you are making assumptions about a great disservice, as doing this is part of how trans people are mis- and degendered in a cissexist, white supremacist society.
The argument is that this way of talking about trans and nonbinary people is just another way of saying that our gender is determined by our genitalia at birth.
This is us saying that we can talk about the privilege you want to talk about, that we must talk about it, and that we must talk about it without mis or degendering the people involved because when we do so, we are using the very ideas that we claim to want to stop, and we are using them against each other.
I don’t understand why there is such a desperation to turn this into a question of denying privilege. We aren’t denying those privileges, we are connecting them to a different source. THAT IS ALL. Changing the source does not change your argument that these privileges exist in any substantive way.
When you are part of the group which benefits from a given form of privilege, you do not get to say that the victims of that privilege are mistaken and that it’s really some other form of privilege in play. Being part of the privileged group makes it impossible for you to make an unbiased analysis of that particular privilege; only people who are denied a privilege are capable of assessing it accurately.
Make no mistake: “connecting privileges to a different source” is denying those privileges. As a girl of color, I find that it is in fact white people’s all-time favorite way of denying privilege — they acknowledge that systemic oppression exists, but insist that poor ignorant people of color just don’t understand what the real cause is.
Is there a legitimate discussion to be had about where the boundary between “general” transphobia and specific transmisogyny? Yes, there is — and that discussion belongs solely and exclusively in the hands of CAMAB trans people. As people who are privileged rather than oppressed by transmisogyny, CAFAB trans people have no place in this discussion just as cis people have no place in this discussion; their perspectives are neither relevant nor helpful.
As for assuming that trans people are CAFAB when they refuse to disclose their status, this is a necessary defense against the depressingly common practice of privileged people angry at being “unfairly” excluded from discussions of privilege taking advantage of online anonymity to masquerade as members of an oppressed group. This form of oppressive behavior has long been a huge problem for people of color, and is becoming increasingly problematic within the LGBT community as well. Or has everyone so quickly forgotten last year’s double debacle of “Lez Get Real” and “Gay Girl in Damascus”?
Congratulations, you are officially Doing It Rong. In two ways.
Firstly, in your last paragraph, you talk about assuming a trans person’s CASAB completely non-ironically when the very problem that has been pointed out with your claim about CAFAB trans people having privilege over CAMAB trans people has been that you can’t tell someone’s CASAB just by looking and therefore you have to assume what it is. You ignored that point, but now you’re admitting that you do have to assume people’s CASABs (even as my pic shows what I look like so you should be able to know my CASAB just by looking, right?). Since your privilege claim relies upon being always being able to tell who’s CAFAB and who’s CAMAB, it fails because even you can’t tell. You just assume because it matches what you believe to be true. You assume people’s CASAB based on what they say, only accepting that someone might be CAMAB if they agree with your ideas of what CAMAB people believe. Which is incredibly shitty and oppressive. It’s trans fundamentalism.
TL;DR - You just falsified your own claim because you admit you can’t tell people’s CASABs which is the basis for your claim of CAFAB trans privilege over CAMAB trans people.
Secondly, your last paragraph shows that this is yet again the politics of purity. That you reason that we should just assume that trans women are men because men try to infiltrate women’s spaces… No, wait, I’m sorry, I’ve confused you with the radical feminists whose politics of purity you have lifted wholesale. No, seriously, I speak from experience here. I was doxed by Cathy Brennan who, in her effort to “protect” (cis) lesbians from infiltration by trans women, decided that I was CAMAB because I was trans and refused to disclose my CASAB and better to err on the side of protecting the CAFAB from me even if I might be one. Now you come along and decide that in order to protect CAMAB trans people from infiltration by CAFAB trans people, you will deliberately missex and misgender some CAMAB trans people because they refuse to tell you their CASAB. That’s the same thing that Cathy Brennan did, only who it applies to is inverse. Explain to me how you are not being as hateful and wrong as she is. Explain to me why you get to decide which CAMAB trans people deserve to be saved and which deserve to be considered traitors, infiltrators, and not worth saving. Explain to me why you decide, just like Cathy Brennan did, that those who oppose you are infiltrators, liars, and dangerous. Explain to me who died and left you in charge of checking all trans people’s underwear. Explain to me why anyone should accept your authority in any of this, why anyone should accept your privilege claims, when you have shown no reasoning for why your privilege theory is true and instead abuse and gaslight people, including CAMAB trans people, when they disagree with you.
Finally, it really pisses me off that you have hijacked my post with your abusive attempts to silence people who disagree with you. Piss off.
(I admit that I don’t expect anything but more abuse from freedominwickedness, so this is written to other trans people to get them to see what is going on here.)