Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Trans.... Trans.... Trans..... and More Trans......

I have been pondering today the ubiquitous use of the "trans" prefix as of late.

Have you heard of:
- transpecies - site 1 - site 2
- transabled - site 1 - site 2
- transracial - site 1 - site 2

And my immediate reaction is that these people who utilize these labels to describe their identities are full of crap.  I would so love to unilaterally dismiss there claims.  But then.... while doing so.... some small voice creeps up inside my brain and says "well....."

And then I'm fucked.

How can I rationalize my own "trans-ness" and dismiss someone else's?

Honestly I don't have enough information to intelligently form an argument that I think desperately needs to be made.  Why?  Well how about this article, that states:

If you accept transgender, then you also have to accept transpecies and every other conceivable thing. If a man who believes he's a woman has a real problem that has to be solved with surgery to make him resemble a woman, then a man who think he's a dolphin must be given whatever surgery he needs to look like a dolphin.

Isn't that a wonderful thing?  It kind of reminds me of when I was growing up and I remember folks saying "if we accept homosexuality then we have to accept beastiality and pedophilia."

The only argument I will make about this stuff are the vast numbers of men and women who  inexplicably know they are not the gender they were marked at birth as.  So many transgender people, who don't want it.  So many transgender people who desperately try and hide and run away from something they do NOT want to have happen to them.

It is with a great deal of resignation that the vast majority of transgender people finally accept their gender variance.  Many more never accept it and instead decide it is better to die.

Sometimes I just don't know.

Yeah, kind of a lackluster post.  A halfhearted attempt at an argument against something I clearly do not believe in.

How about you?  Do you believe in the other "trans-things?"  Do you have any arguments for or against such things?

Maybe you could help educate me.

Maybe I am totally dismissing people who shouldn't be.

****I should specify that when I reference transracial I am specifically referring to people who have to birth claim to the racial ancestry they claim they are.



  1. Replies
    1. It is easy to dismiss thoughts of others by stating that one does not believe in labels. The problem with that though is that a large portion of the human population does believe in labels and uses them to describe many people, including us. If we ignore the use of those labels then others will decide for us which labels will apply to us. I believe that there is strength in joining the discussion so that we may have our voices heard in how those labels are utilized.

  2. Nadine, the "dolphin" example is a perfect example of not understanding what trans is. The uneducated may have an excuse but the ignorant do not. This example reminds me of the bathroom usage by transgender people. The fear being that this give license to men to enter a ladies bathroom. Ignorance is scary because it's easy to stay uneducated, uninformed. I believe "trans" is real but the unreal fears around it cause issue

  3. This is the problem I wrestle is removing a penis to create a vagina, different from apotemnophilia?


    1. I had to look that up! Thanks for the interesting thoughts Clare!

    2. The difference is in the creation of a vagina! OTOH, I've met an asexual agender person... and I've come to view certain body modifications as being acceptable to whoever wants them for the right reason: penectomies and mastectomies are on that list.

      But... a leg? That's different.

  4. I went through (hah! I'm going through today) some pretty severe denial on that bumpy road to coming out to myself as transgender. These things are appealing to a brain in denial: let's look for reasons to dismiss my own truth, because my own truth is too hard to deal with.

    It seems that there is a genetic basis for transgenderism, and our bodies are wired up to present as either gender with a little hormonal cue. It can't be "cured" and transition does not harm the individual. These things are not true of transspecies and transability.

    Transracial... is interesting. I'm white, and I grew up in a white household in a black neighborhood, so my cultural identity is curious. However, I've always been extremely sensitive about how I express that side of my cultural identity: almost never, except in paragraphs like this one.

    I think the problem is that we equate race with culture. There's a growing trend where black people are "checking" others for appreciating/participating in their culture... and I wouldn't have a problem with that if I didn't have friends of mixed race who were raised in "black culture" and identify as black, but get marginalized in this "checking" process.

    Up in Canada, the discussion more often centers around aboriginal people, and one tribe is even going so far as to ban miscegenation on reserve land. Yikes.