SMNTY Classics: Feminist Transphobia
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Mom never told you from how stuff works. Hello to the PODCAST. I'm caroline and I'm kristen this week. Chris and I are taking a hard look at basically straight FEMINISM'S LGBT PROBLEM TODAY. Specifically we are talking. About Trans Exclusionary radical feminists now turf as is the acronym for that is considered a slur by some and it's considered just a neutral scripture by others particularly the person who coined the term back in two thousand eight. But we will get into all of that in just a moment but last time on the show we introduced the idea of radical feminism and the lavender menace and so today's episode is building off of that but so Christine. Could you give us a little refresher on what the lavender menace is yes so? The lavender menace was a term coined by Feminine Mystique author and President of National Organization of Women Buddy for Dan to describe her discomfort with feminists aligning themselves with radical feminist lesbians at the time because she was very concerned about the credibility of second way feminism and considered lesbians a potential threat to that because the rampant homophobia of the time And the still persistent stereotyping of feminist maintained that women who advocate for gender equality or really just man-hating lesbians and so she thought that the so called lavender menace might inhibit mainstream feminism from moving forward to which those radical lesbian feminists that she was so scared of essentially took it on as their mantle. Saying okay we will reclaim this term. We will become the lavender menace and we will fight against this fighting against essentially the people who they should be building a coalition with and that did end up happening. I mean buddy for. Dan came back and later said that she was wrong. The National Organization of women and other organizations at the time And also people like Gloria Steinem publicly stood up for the needs and recognition of lesbians. But it really gets to like you said this. Lingering still shortcoming when it comes to white cisgender straight feminist being more inclusive but if we zero specifically in on those radical feminists particularly radical lesbian feminist of the nineteen seventies of. Second wave feminism. There was really a push to embrace lesbianism. I know that sounds really weird but we. We did touch on it in our last episode. Not just being a lesbian Having relationships with women but literally embracing the lesbian non man involved lifestyle Even going so far as for straight women to embrace political lesbianism as a way to fight the patriarchy and so part of this more radical radical feminist outlook was that even bisexual or pan. Sexual women are the enemy. Because they're literally sleeping with the enemy. How can you be a true feminist fighting for tree quality and Liberation? If you're having sex with men. They were also turning their backs on butch lesbians considering them an unhealthy mirroring of male privilege or patriarchal sex roles and they maintain that women are basically perfect and true love can only exist between women and it's this focus on true womanhood in quotes that often ignored class and race issues but it totally barred Trans Women. Yeah and like we said. We did an entire episode on this chapter of a women's liberation in the seventies and eighties last time. So if you want a more in depth look at that then definitely listen to the lavender. Menace podcast episode. That came out earlier this week. But today we're gonNA focus in on the contemporary transphobia within some radical feminist circles and how this also reflects more broadly on how people think about feminism today in what radical feminism means and so people might be wondering. People who aren't familiar with the issue might be wondering. Why would you bar trans women from feminism and it has it's directly descended from those ideas that anything that could potentially be aligned with manhood? Masculinity men in general is considered a negative. Because like I said that whole idea of true womanhood with so critical to some of these radical feminists groups and so the reasoning behind excluding trans women from the feminist movement. Was that Trans Women. They argued or biologically male just masquerading as women or their parodying women and the idea that they'll never truly understand what it means to be a woman. They were not socialized as women. They didn't face the same types of oppression that biological women face and so they ended up saying. Hey you were born a man. I consider that you are always a man and these circles these old schools turf circles were certainly alive and well in the nineteen seventies But we're really going to talk about what's going on today especially because when you look at criticisms of feminists it usually is the you know the turf label that gets tossed around a lot of like. Oh well feminism today is wrong because you're not really advocating for gender equality because you have some of these radical feminist out here who are missing dress to want nothing to do with men who were in that is not equality at all. So this is I think an important clarifying conversation to have to narrow down. Who turps really are in terms of being a small segment of the feminist spectrum and how they are even distinct from radical feminists and how radical feminists are even distinct from. Would we say what lower case F feminists? Yeah and I mean. I think it's important sometimes. It goes up saying but it is important to revisit the idea that yes. Feminism does have many many branches. It is a tree with many many branches not all of which overlap and get along with each other by the same token to. I think it's important to frame this conversation away from the cat. Fight Eighty Angle. That tends to be Very attractive to the media like Oh look feminists are fighting with each other again and I really don't want to present this conversation of these. We don't like these women over here. They're saying all these nasty things but rather take more of a bird's eye view of the lay of the land of what what's going on. How this term turf even came about And how the Trans Activism that? It's really you know in full bloom today is dealing with this trans-phobia that has existed historically and still today within small corners of feminism. Yeah so the. I mentioned earlier that the term turf is actually pretty new. Despite the fact that there have been Anti Trans Feminists in the movement from the get go. So KRISTEN WEAR DID TURF. Come from so. The term is credited to Australian blogger. Tig Dog who was also assist Gender Woman And Tig tug coined it as a neutral description of a particular group of activists that she felt in her words or colonizing radical feminist discourse. Yes she says. It wasn't meant to be a slur but she assure it can be perceived as one in the same way that some people might consider the words feminist or radical feminists to be slurs depending on the tone and context. And who's saying it and so in that same vein? Many of these women who are called turf definitely opposed the term saying that it is a slur and they prefer the term man exclusionary radical feminist but preferring the term man exclusionary radical feminists also highlights their trans-phobia absolutely because they are still in calling themselves. Man Exclusionary radical feminist or Murph's. They're still calling Trans Women. Men exactly that it falls under the same umbrella to them and this whole turf merv transphobia within feminism issue seems to have come to a head in twenty fourteen when there was a piece in the New Yorker by Michelle Goldberg Writing. About transphobic feminists and trends feminists and sort of how they have obviously like butt heads. How are they existing these same spaces especially in the context of Growing Trans Activism And in response to that New Yorker piece which we'll talk about in more detail later on in the PODCAST JULIA. Serano WHO's author of the whipping girl wrote in the advocate quote from their point of view. They should be referred to as Murph's because they reject trans women who they see as men but not trans men who they view as misguided women who have been brainwashed by patriarchal and transgender agendas. Needless to say an overwhelming majority of transgender people rejected this framing of the issue and Serrano writing. That piece in the advocate was clarifying all of that. Because she felt that the New Yorker piece didn't really outline clearly enough the the depth of the transphobia that a lot of these turfs these trans exclusionary radical feminists Really embrace. Yeah we'll end. She was also arguing that Goldberg painted so called. Turfs in a much more sympathetic light than she did. Actual Trans activists which is something that we see across a lot of think pieces for lack of a better word that are around today talking about these very same issues and by the same token to there is a concern among radical feminists who are not transphobic. That lumping all of this together in this way in the way that the New Yorker piece and other pieces have have kind of done of really muddying. Those waters They've worried that it's casting a shadow on them. Lumping all radical feminists into the turf grew. Yeah Hashtag not all red FEM. Exactly yeah and so. It is worth Clarifying yes that not all. Radical feminists are transphobic. And that there are plenty of Trans Women activists who are feminists these you know lots of been diagrams going on surprise surprise in the feminist movement. But we looked over at the TURFS DOT COM to get some clarification on what a trans exclusionary radical feminist is or does And they point out that turfs as they see it. Assert that Trans women or men and vice versa And that Trans. Women can't actually be lesbians They out transpeople whether they're co workers colleagues. Whoever and they make the assertion that the world would be a better place without trans people. See the example of Bev von Der. Who's a big name turf activist and writer? Von Der said they expect will be shocked to see statistics about them being killed and don't realize some of US wish they would all be dead and Von Doors name is actually one that comes up when we look at sort of the history of that tension between feminism radical feminism and Trans activists. Yes so now is the time when we highlight a couple of not so savory moments and radical feminist history so in nineteen seventy three at the West Coast Lesbian Conference Trans Folksinger. Beth Elliott was threatened and eventually excluded from the gathering of more than twelve hundred lesbian women and a group called the gutter dykes head leafletted. The conference to protest Elliott's inclusion and the charge was led Carolina by none other than who by the von door who alleged or still alleges that Eliot had stopped her and threatened to rape her after Vonda turned Elliott down when they were teens and so this is really a lightning rod moment in the feminism. If we're going to have the dichotomy if we're going to say the feminism versus Trans Movement Because it really highlighted. Hey we don't like transpeople or Hey. We need to support an include transpeople. Well an kind of pulling out our focus a little bit too. This is something that Serano writes about in whipping girl in terms of Just transphobia in the nineteen seventies and of transpeople having a really hard time finding a welcoming space because you have within radical feminism this trans-phobia happening and then when it comes to the gay rights movement in the same way that betty for Dan was pulling the lavender menace. The gay rights movement wasn't so open to trans people either because they were trying to position their platform in more of a away from gender identity and focusing on sexual orientation and relationships so they were like we don't have a place anywhere yes but at the same time the group the gutter dykes are leafleting. The conference to protest. Elliot's inclusion keynote speaker Robin Morgan with blasting Elliott and Trans Women in general in her speech she called Elliott an opportunist infiltrator and a destroyer. Morgan said I will not call a male. She thirty two years of suffering in this android centric society and of surviving have earned me the title woman. One walk down the street by a male transvestite. Five minutes of his being hassled which he may enjoy and then he dares he dares to think he understands our pain and this is a refrain that I mean this is still going on the miss `gendering the purposeful attempt to cause pain by misjudging. Trans people is something that still goes on. I mean we saw it. Come out in full force win. Caitlyn Jenner was on the cover vanity fair exactly but so in the wake of this speech and the wake in the wake of the leafleting Elliott gets onstage to perform but the turfs got violent. They were threatening her and they jumped on stage to assault her but again not all feminists not all lesbians. Not all women of this movement felt the same way writing in the publication. The tide which is a lesbian newsletter. One woman did speak up for Eliot. She wrote this woman is insisting that Beth Elliott not be permitted to perform because Beth is a transsexual. Beth was on the San Francisco Steering Committee for the conference. A Pan of the original group that gave birth to the idea. She's written some far out femina songs. That's why she's here. No we do not cannot relate to her as a man we have not known as a Man. She is a woman because she chooses to be a woman. What right do you have to define her sexuality and I just thought that this was a perfect as I said lightning rod moment to highlight the division between Turfs and non turf? Basically everyone everyone else. Yeah and pedal so much in those same myth about transpeople that we've talked about on past podcast that they are really just trying to deceive US and infiltrate and where gender as a costume So it's just it's so again again and again and again reading about this especially the history in obviously How it still going on today? It's unfortunate to see people in the name of feminism really just recycling the same kinds of lies feminism ultimately is trying to dismantle okay so a recent study found that a great hair day makes you happier and more confident but that same study also revealed that ninety five percent of women. Don't feel great about their hair. I can definitely relate to the confidence part because if my hair is doing something a little weird something. I don't want it to do then I can't stop thinking about it. The rest of the day Alma Guy. We've all been there. Paintings Rosewater collection feels and smells amazing. 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We're not the only sour notes in the seventies we also have Olivia records Which was a woman's music collective in Los Angeles receiving hate mail and death threats for hiring a Trans Woman? Sandy stone as a recording engineer and Stone has written about how you know. We were all having a great time. We were making music. We were working together for the feminist cause for women supporting women and other lesbians another feminists. It was great and then a boycott and smear campaign organized by Janice Raymond eventually drove stone out of the collective which did attempt to defend her. They pin an essay four lesbian publication saying that. Hey Sandy has decided to give up her male identity. And now she's faced with the same kinds of oppression that other women and lesbians face. She must also cope with the ostracism that all of society imposes on a transsexual being. Like hey everybody has a past. But this is the president we need to focus on the president and we are all about supporting fellow women and fellow lesbians that is not how people like Janice Raymond sought no Janice Raymond saw as again essentially a guy deceiving and infiltrating a sacred female space. And I mean it's so unfortunate too because the the bigger context. Olivia records was a pretty incredible thing. Happening if you consider how today but especially back then how male dominated the music industry was But Silver Lining Sandy stone would go on to write an essay. The Empire strikes back a post transsexual manifesto that became essentially the foundation of transgender studies around the world. Yeah and also got people thinking Robin Tyler who was part of the feminist comedy do Harrison and Tyler Had been scheduled to perform at that same conference as Beth Elliott in nineteen seventy three and later in an interview. She reflected on that reaction to stone. And she says you know what's interesting rather than fighting. Who's oppressing US? Terse go after the most oppressed people instead of building a coalition and that's just shocking to me and kristen. What's what you said earlier about The need to sort of come together and fight for the same thing rather than tearing each other down exactly And then finally we wanted to talk about the Michigan. Women's that's women with a y music festival or mich- Fest Mich Fest That was started in nineteen seventy nine as a women born women again women with wise event and it is still intermittently held today and basically thousands of women would come set up Camp Cooke take classes and enjoy a safe space. There was one woman reflecting on how incredible it would be to go to the festival where you would be out in the woods and it'll be dark but you didn't have to be scared of the dark because you're just surrounded by all these other women who are wanting to have a good time but no trans women have been allowed because of the notion that it would endanger that safe space in the sense of personal liberation that it offered and that was something that was brought up in that New Yorker piece by Michelle. Goldberg and Julia. Serano also commented on mich- vest because it has happened in recent years right and there have been trans activists protests outside of the festival. Basically saying this is not okay that we're not allowed to come share the same space as well. Well Yeah I mean. I think there were activists but I think what was heavily reported on was when some Trans activists responded to the Trans Exclusionary policy of the festival by defacing property. Spray painting some things Which was another way. Four turfs and others to point and say see this essentially. This is why we can't have nice things. Yeah the wind. Us transpeople are dangerous. Transpeople ARE DANGEROUS. you're deceptive. You're mentally ill. And there's no reason that you should be included in an event for women with a why they say now when we get a little deeper into this. Trans Exclusionary radical feminist fight against against Trans Inclusion. A lot of it comes down to this idea that trans women especially are over. Reliant on gender are using gender as some kind of a crutch to again to infiltrate and deceive. Yeah it's sort of an. It's sort of an interesting. Circular ARGUMENT ABOUT GENDER IS A social. Construction IS BIOLOGICAL. What is it Writing in that New Yorker piece. Michelle Goldberg Says Trans. Women say that they are women because they feel female that as some put it they have women's brains and men's bodies radical feminists reject the notion of a quote female brain. They believed that if women think and act differently from men. It's because society forces them to requiring to be sexually attractive nurturing and deferential in the words of Lear Keith Speaker at radames. Respond femininity is quote ritualized submission and so this is kind of the check. No boxes issue the you. Shouldn't you shouldn't feel compelled or compel others to say that you are female or male? Trans people are hurting themselves with surgery or hormones when they should learn to accept themselves as they are you're just playing into the binary gender doesn't exist female is a social construct and that's an idea that Amanda Marcotte over its slate picks up on when discussing writer Elinor Burkitt's argument that Caitlyn Jenner and other trans women constitute a threat to feminism. Now it's worth noting that Amanda Marcotte and on the other side. Eleanor Burqa there. These are just two people who are making these arguments. Plenty of other people have been part of this conversation but this I thought the article of its late was a good highlight of the conversation. And Marcotte asks why be suspicious of Trans Women's socially constructed gender then if female quote unquote female is always construct. Anyway she says. Do you really believe it's just socially constructed if you're arguing for biologically women born women only spaces so it's an argument. That kind of just goes in a circle of we'll way so if you're saying that it really is just a construct and that feminine women are just putting on a costume femininity to appease the patriarchy. Then how is the trans quote unquote performance of gender and femininity any different than a cyst? Woman's performance of gender and femininity and why should transfer to not be included in women only spaces? Well I think that in this pocket. Of radical feminism. Most of us are doing it wrong in their eyes. Wouldn't you think because you would need to force divorce? Yourself of any outer. Trappings of femininity in order to truly achieve this this idea of feminism. That they have Right Yeah. I don't know and and in Kristen you mentioned muddying the waters earlier and I mean the things that were touching on at the moment or they're not all from the same people and I think that's what makes it complicated because some radical feminists are saying divorce yourself from everything that is male and masculine and be androgynous. Some people are saying embrace everything that is feminine and womanly in you. Some people are just saying like just turn away from men and just sleep with women or live with women. And don't you know have any connection to men at all so but not all of these different groups are saying the same thing I mean. It's honestly mind boggling and seems to lead to dead ends whichever way you turn. Yeah and it's also it's also I don't know how productive it is to tell people how to live and what to like. I mean I I think conversations about the Patriarchy are obviously important and enlightening and. I'm not sure that to me. It's akin to sing. The roof is leaking so just burnt down the whole house. Yeah but you know. I love an HDTV metaphor. Let's renovate this feminist house. That's right well you know. Women are good at interior decor so in the first half of the show. We focused a lot on trans-phobia but now let's talk about Trans Activism. Because activists are loud and proud and transgender people are more visible than ever before and actively fighting and simply by living and being vocal are fighting these turf. Stereotypes circling around hate fear and exclusion. I mean you have people like Laverne Cox Janet. Mock Caitlyn Jenner and jazz jennings to only name. Four who are putting human faces on the issue that really would didn't exist with this level of visibility at all in the seventies or eighties. I mean certainly. Trans activists are just as vocal as they always have been. But it's just now I feel like they're being heard that people are willing to say okay. No wait what are you saying? Let's actually listen to this and Actually give you a chance to speak These activists are fighting for inclusion. Yes but they're also fighting for safety for recognition of their right to exist and to be taken seriously. They're advocating for things like admission to women's only colleges and acceptance in spaces supposedly only for women like we mentioned at the top of the podcast. They're also raising awareness about the number of trans people killed every year which in the US as of mid August was at fifteen according to an article in Time magazine. And there's still fighting this stigma that being trans is a mental illness that their sexual deviants that they're deceptive or just that it's a passing phase. They'll change their minds because one common refrain among trans exclusionary radical feminists. Is that Trans Women. Suffer from something called Auto Gyna- Feeli Or Sexual Arousal the thought of being female or having female genitalia and his term was coined by a guy named Ray Blanchard who's a retired psychiatry professor Who used it to describe an erotic compulsion to become a woman rather than a conceived female identity so again I mean it's just like framing them as deviance as just being a fetish essentially and some of the heroes of the turf movement or platform or position are those individuals who have transitioned and who then have come out and said they regretted their decision and went back to living as a man or a woman. these people are often cited by turfs saying see you just get a little therapy and it all gets straightened out in your head. Oh that sounds so similar to conversion therapy gay conversion therapy where in those on the way opposite end of the spectrum where you have hyper conservative. People who do elevate people who have come out and then gone back in the closet quote unquote thanks to conversion therapy their elevated say. Oh look see see. It's just a phase. Yeah when in reality no one. Individual of any type of group can stand for an entire population and I should also clarify to the distinction between. We're talking about gender identity in terms of trans issue and sexual orientation with the gay conversion therapy so a little apples oranges but nonetheless startling similarities between these two groups which are ideologically on opposite ends of the political spectrum and a big aspect of trans activism to is fighting against actions that are specifically intended to oppress them not just insensitivity or maybe a little ignorance on the part of six people but things like miss `gendering refusing to use the correct or preferred pronouns This is big with writer. Sheila Jeffreys Surfrider Sheila Jeffreys who does refuse to use preferred pronouns. She writes that used by men of feminine. Pronouns conceals the masculine privilege bestowed upon them by virtue of having been placed in and brought up in the male. Sex cast stood. There's no acknowledgment there that Trans Women are women. They're still that assertion that no trans women are just men who were putting on a costume and part of Trans Activism. Against SIS sexism in society does involve to speaking out on things that they perceive as oppressive regardless of intention so things like celebrations of this women's bodies and biology so we did an entire podcast for instance all about this period pride movement in quotes at a celebration of menstruation culturally. Like we've never seen before. Really things like that Things like the vagina monologues. There have been On on some college campuses vagina monologue performances canceled. Because they're seen as trans exclusionary. This episode is brought to you by good girls. I am so excited for good girls season. Three this show is so good. I kind of want to turn to a life of crime. I Love Christina Hendricks. She's got four kids. She's a potential crime. Boss great hair. Oh Yeah and Rita. She's amazing he's smart. He's tough and she's going to all the good things to a heist pop speaker said it's your next TV addiction and they are not wrong. I am addicted to Mae Whitman. Her character is ridiculously cool and funny. I heard there's going to be a new member of the gang this season. And she's going to bring all kinds of trouble with her. Things are definitely getting more complicated. More dangerous or as variety said audacious. I am here for it. Good girls back. They've erased sixteenth on. Nbc Let's together. Oh yeah I'll bring wine and a crowbar. Here's the thing. Saving money with Geico is almost better than playing pickup basketball. Because there's always that guy who joins your game. He never passes the rock. He constantly bricks threes. And who completely hacking and then put his hands up and say no foul no foul with GYCO. It's easy to switch and save on car insurance. No need to fake. An ANKLE SPRAIN. Because you're absolutely exhausted. So switch and save with GYCO. It's almost better than sports. And also things like the quote unquote real women or real beauty ads. That we've seen within a huge uptick in this from companies like stuff or Pantene. Who focused on this real womanhood? Which is sort of an indirect throwback to the early Rad FEM CLAIM OF EMBRACING TRUE. Womanhood is the way to Achieve true liberation. They draw links. Between you know how. Can you say that these women in this ad or true women? What is the Truth Woman Right? And and this to you know get to the body positive things like real women have curves and things like that of stepping back and saying wait. What are we really mean by? Real and also within the healthcare scope ignoring that trans men can get pregnant and also have periods and abortion reproductive rights as a trans issue to or holding women only events that expressly exclude Trans Women or not admitting Trans Women to women's colleges. That's been a huge issue in the past few years. Yeah and so. It's it's these. It's this area this area of well we don't mean to offend you or we don't mean to exclude you transpeople saying well but you're excluding me an offending me and a pressing me anyway regardless of your attention. It's this sort of area. That's getting a lot of coverage in think pieces nowadays people writing about feminism and Trans inclusion or exclusion because a lot of riders particularly. This women have been very vocal about saying not everything can be for every body You're just being too politically correct. You're being too sensitive and they're essentially telling these trans activist to calm down which we all know telling someone to calm down. Never works out well. I mean there are plenty of people who wouldn't necessarily be called radical feminist otherwise but who have still by activists earned that turf name because they say that these trans activists are taking things too. Far One of those people is Bryn Mawr Grad. Monica Potts who talked about the whole women's college issue in the New Republic in February. Twenty fifteen she points out that four women's only colleges accept Trans Women and to accept Trans men and she in her essay which I thought was pretty. Reminiscent of the complaints that we've talked about over political correctness pods argues that women still like. Huber duper need the confidence incubator? That is the woman only college setting and she says that a racing references to women sisterhood and their bodies or like you said Kristen cancelling performances of the vagina monologues is indistinguishable from old school misogyny. The crux of our argument is that it should be okay. That not everything. All the time is for everybody But then she does go on to say that women's spaces and language are targeted which is a pretty loaded term are targeted by trans activists because women readily give up power. She writes quote women especially young ones. Hold power so delicately and uncomfortably. They're ready to give it up as soon as someone accuses them of being selfish which this was the off ramp for me in this piece where. I don't agree with that at all. I think that saying that. It's being targeted Strategically like that is I well I'll just say I don't agree that it's being strategic targeted like that because I think that also again paints transpeople as devious rather than seeking safe spaces as they've been seeking for so long. Yeah so she. She basically goes on to say that. Hey there's plenty of other liberal arts schools that are safe spaces for gender questioning students or or sexuality questioning students. Many of them being former women's only colleges So basically why. Don't you just go there and leave our women's only colleges alone? You transpeople an unrelated note. There are some people concerned about these. These women who are not turfs being labeled turfs for like Monica Potts is doing raising. You know a need for which she says these sacred spaces the sisterhood and things like that for someone like that to then be by some activists called a turf that that is simply a weapon also to silence women so it's like are we. Are we really progressive conversation or is everyone just trying to tell everyone else to shut up? What's going on it kind of feels like everybody's telling each other to shut up McDonald. Which is a student by? The way was writing in the New Statesman. Also in February. Two Thousand Fifteen and says that The Trans activists who are like pastas talking about wanting to be included in women's only spaces are a small subset of extremist who trying to impose their definition of reality in their political agenda on everyone and McDonald two points out the whole vagina monologues cancelation issue in addition to complaints about discussions of pregnancy and abortion rights. Adminstration so I think pots and McDonald. The anonymous McDonald are basically saying we should be able to accept trans people for who they are and also celebrate women's bodies and spaces and not be called turfs because of it basically saying that those two things can co exist and you know the one issue that people like pots and McDonald and a lot of media outlets general when reporting on this kind of issue Bring up our people labeled turfs. Having their appearances at college campuses or in public spaces cancelled due to outcries from Trans activists or eminence activists who were like no. Get your hate speech away from me And Julia Serano whom we mentioned earlier in the podcast Wrote about this as well in her response. Piece in the advocate to that New Yorker piece that really got a lot of people talking and thinking about this in two thousand fourteen and she said you know sure turfs should be free to speak and assemble whenever wherever but an LGBTQ organization would be hypocritical to host performers who advocate for Trans woman exclusion and isn't a college. It claims to protect students and faculty from Gender Based Discrimination Facing a conflict of interest if it invites a speaker who says Trans people are just sexually deviant. Yeah good point. Yeah good point but in the advocate. Peace One thing. That's really hammered. Home was that her far bigger concern with all of this is the media. And I think that we're part of this Carolina because we're talking about this exact thing. The media focusing so much and debating so much over this kind of trans activism rather than talking about the very real day to day experiences and discrimination and violence that Trans People Face. You know one of the things that she was most distraught about with that. New Yorker piece was that it simply pose this whole thing as a catfight of this group versus vist group where she was like. No this is not. This is distracting. No this is distracting. Focus away from where the real attention needs to be placed in terms of actually improving trans people's lives because when we focus so much on this it paints trans people as just out to take away everything again as being interlopers So on the one hand I think it was really important that we have this conversation about turfs. Because of the way you know as we talked about the top of the podcasts how the term the acronym has taken on a life of its own and how a lot of people wheeled it without really understanding it. I think it's important to talk about that. But is there a danger of talking about all of this too much? Well do you mean that? Perhaps we should focus more on the individual people or the groups of people in the conversation rather than labeling people. I guess what I'm thinking is. I'll I'll answer your question with another question though what I'm wondering is. How do we re frame this conversation? That is very exclusionary focused of you have one group wanting to exclude these people and you have another group who is fighting against exclusion. What happens if we reframed this conversation to really focus in on inclusion Because on the one hand I think it's important for us to be able to talk about women's bodies and to talk about menstruation periods Vaginas endometriosis these kinds of things that we talked about on the podcast. All the time at the same time to you and I want to be as inclusive as possible and Trans lives matter and we you know never want to disinvite transpeople to the party because we want to build coalition. So how do we? How do we make all of this inclusive? Can we do or wanting to many things at one? I think we can be inclusive and I know that you and I have worked very hard to to be inclusive and we have gotten many letters from Trans Listeners. Who say hey thanks? For the acknowledgement that there are different types of bodies and that Different types of people have periods or don't have periods I do think that including Trans People in the conversation does not do away with the importance of talking about like. You said women's biology because especially when you take into account. The history of women being divorced from their bodies and women's biology being considered gross and dirty to sexual and we shouldn't talk about it So you and I are in sort of an interesting position of we talk a lot about health and biology and and sexual health stuff like that but we also talk about a lot of social issues like Turfs Lake Trans Activism And so let's sort of a long winded way of saying that I think both of these conversations need to happen and exist side by side and that perhaps some of our conversations and others Could be reframed to make sure that we do include all of those different types of bodies well absolutely because by the same token we have also received letters and facebook comments in tweets from people saying. Hey you know what you're talking about especially things like menstruation and periods. Don't be so suspect. Assist about it recognized that trans men experienced these things to Which we absolutely want to do. Well I think one thing we can all agree on. Is that The turf rhetoric is very harmful. Yeah there's absolutely no reason to why why try to harm why try to harm others emotionally physically mentally Why would you out a trans person or or a gay person or anyone? Why would you? Why would you target people in order to cause pain? And and I understand that some radical feminists have the perspective that anything tied to men at all ever is the enemy. But that's ignoring the very real. The very real fact that. Trans Women are women? Will I also think that it really says a lot that since this really started bubbling up in the nineteen seventies especially to now? It's not like we've seen the kind massive cultural sea-change really embracing an advocating for turf platforms in the way that we have seen especially in just the last handful of years a legitimate cultural sea-change in terms of recognizing and accepting Trans people as people and in terms of mainstream feminism of doing a more concerted job of including transpeople as well and inviting them to the table and working as allies for the issues that affect them. Yeah it's all a work in progress caroline and so work in progress. I'm I'm really interested to hear from people. I know that there's aspects of this conversation that we didn't touch on. I mean I. I'm incredibly interesting here. And people from both sides of this argument because I don't want to paint it as a cat. Fight like Like Goldberg but I'm interested to hear from listeners. I know a lot of you have opinions on this well and I think it's just so important to remember that like so many of the `ISMs that exist. Feminism also exists on a spectrum. You know there is no one feminism and people often mistakenly paint feminism as wrong or misguided because they see this one pocket over here on the spectrum and assume that the whole thing is tainted because of it so that mom stuff at how stuff works dot com. Is You can send your letters. You can also tweet us at mom stuff podcast or messages on facebook. We do hope to hear from you. And we've got a couple of letters to share with you right now. Why have a letter here from Devon and response to our feminist anthropology episode Devon says? I cannot thank you enough for doing podcast. On feminist anthropology studied anthro in college and I'm not an anthropologist now but I do work for a feminist organization despite only spending one week in all of my years in school studying feminist anthropology and spending the rest of the time on the same judgmental Englishman anthropology had a massive impact on my views. A feminist. Even if you don't end up using your answer degree in a practical sense you'll use it every day when you meet. New People. Anthropology taught me the incredible skill of how to find meaning in the little things that build culture often times. The meetings we find show longstanding evidence of the Patriarchy which is amazing because then we know what to fight and work against. We can't change the culture of sexism unless we know what we need to change. Then there's the rare moment when we look at a ritual or a moment and find that all along it's been feminist and it's been beautiful. There's a definite subset of anthropology that is specifically feminist but I also believe that anthropology is inherently feminist. Anything that makes you question the culture you live in order to find the history and purpose of previously unquestioned. Actions is a feminist practice. I wasn't at all surprised to hear that most anthropology PhD students are women. But it still makes me feel good to hear that the subject I love an incredibly grateful for is populated by these smart women. Thanks again for great. Listen I've got a letter here from Kirsten on young women's voices and fry she writes. I'm slowly working my way through your extensive series and recently listen to your episode. Our young women ruining American speech. I'm a nineteen year old female broadcast journalist for the US Air Force. Hey Pretty Cool Carson. Part of our training is heavily concentrated on our speech patterns and tone of voice a lot of young women having much more difficult time with the course because of global fry. That is just so ingrained in vocal register. They can actually fail out or be reclassified if they can't unlearn it. You have to audition to book. The job and many young women are turned away if older women are judging the audition because their voices are simply to quote young then and high we're taught to fake deeper more authoritative voices by slowing down and breathing deeper. The males have a much easier time. Of course really only having to master articulation and speed while the women have a lot more to correct to be considered arable. Love your both. Thanks so much. Kirsten that is fascinating. And you know what phrase I love. Global FRY Delicious Salty. Well we can't wait to hear from you as well. Dear Listener MOMS stenhouse upward. Dot Com is our email address and for links to all of our social media as well as all of our blogs videos and podcasts including this one with links to our sources so you can read up on all this. You could say complicated stuff. We've been talking about head on over to stuff. Mom Never told you dot com the moral miss and thousands of other topics visit. How STUFF WORKS DOT COM? 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