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Originally Posted by frog
I don't buy that, mamajama. I have an opinion, you have an opinion. Why villify me for mine? I'm not villifying you for yours.
I am not villifying you personally. But your opinion that MtF transsexuals are not womyn is extremely harmful and carries with it a whole lot of unkind assumptions.

Unfortunately, your opinion is a very common one. I'm actually always very dissapointed when I hear women expressing it, doubly so when feminist womyn express it and, well, triply dissapointed when queer or allied womyn do. It implies that transsexual individuals are liars, choose their fate, are 'imposters', and not to be trusted to claim their own sexuality. It also implies that they are somehow lesser. All of these attributes were overtly applied to all womyn, not so very long ago. Now that we've come a certain way in acheiving some rights, we can now turn our backs on those climbing the ladder way behind us? Are we hurredly patching the hole in the ceiling lest someone else get through?

Is womyn a strictly defined word? How is that possible when gender is a social construct? Basically we have a choice. We can decide that queer feminism is an exclusive group for people who fit our personal definitions of what it means to be womyn. To me that's like selling out and as a member of the queer, feminist, born-with-a-cunt group, I'm not selling my bit yet. Not until all womyn can reap in the profits.
 

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We've been to every fest since 2000 and we proudly support the WBW policy. I attend other womyn's fests that are not WBW too but I respect Michfest for defining its space and sacredness.

I've also got a fabulous little DS that I cannot wait to take to Brother Sun. For now, we're thrilled with Sprouts. DS was the youngest attendee at fest that anyone knew of.


And DD and I survived the cold and rainy 2004 together the entire week, even though she was only 3 months old.
 

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Originally Posted by Jennifer3141
we proudly support the WBW policy.
I'm genuinely trying to understand this, Jennifer. Why 'proudly'? I really don't understand. I hear that many people support the fact that the organisers are 'defining their space'. That's cool. But does the ability to define one's space trump the fact that the definition is transphobic and discriminatory against one type of woman? So it's more important that I'm defining my space than how I'm defining it?
 

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mamajama, I'm not a queer woman, I'm a lesbian. Just FTR.

You're free to define yourself any way you like, same as you're free to have your beliefs. I have that same opportunity.

I've heard the arguments you're making a thousand times before. I still support the WBW policy and will continue to do so.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by frog
mamajama, I'm not a queer woman, I'm a lesbian. Just FTR.

You're free to define yourself any way you like, same as you're free to have your beliefs. I have that same opportunity.

I've heard the arguments you're making a thousand times before. I still support the WBW policy and will continue to do so.
Sorry to be repetitive. But I have yet to hear a response that makes sense. I guess you're ok with being transphobic? Or do you prefer a different term.
 

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mamajama, I'm not transphobic. "Trans" does not a woman make. There's nothing wrong with transpeople. I have nothing against any of them. But I don't understand why trans issues and concerns have been lumped in with glb issues and concerns because, frankly, they don't fit together at all. They're different issues, issues I've worked on because I think they're important--inclusive non-discrimination clauses, unisex bathroom facilities, etc.

I'm not interested in having this conversation with you any longer. You're berating people for arriving at different conclusions than you. It doesn't foster any sort of conversation, and you're so sure you're right and everyone else is wrong that it's not at all interesting to me. BTDT.

I'm sure someone around here hasn't gone 'round and 'round on this particular issue before, but it's not me. You know where I stand and I know where you stand. I'm done.
 

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Originally Posted by frog
You're berating people for arriving at different conclusions than you. It doesn't foster any sort of conversation, and you're so sure you're right and everyone else is wrong that it's not at all interesting to me. BTDT.

I'm sure someone around here hasn't gone 'round and 'round on this particular issue before, but it's not me. You know where I stand and I know where you stand. I'm done.
OK. You're done. But you might notice that I've been posting on this thread for a year and I don't think there's been any 'berating' on my part. You have identified trans folks as a particular gender (or not a particular gender) which is simply wrong. I have BTDT as well, and I happen to feel strongly enough about this issue to never stop. I am more than willing to engage in dialogue about this (as evidenced by the fact that I've been participating in this thread for quite some time). If you're not, you're not. That's ok.


But I do find it interesting how you have specified that you're a 'lesbian', thus identifying your sexual identity but yet you are unwilling to allow others (namely--transsexual people) to do the same.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mamajama
I'm genuinely trying to understand this, Jennifer. Why 'proudly'? I really don't understand. I hear that many people support the fact that the organisers are 'defining their space'. That's cool. But does the ability to define one's space trump the fact that the definition is transphobic and discriminatory against one type of woman? So it's more important that I'm defining my space than how I'm defining it?
Because I support womyn born womyn and I defend their right to define their own space.

I support womyn who grow as little girls, who bleed, who bear children, who lose their breasts to cancer, who hit a glass ceiling at work, etc. etc.

This doesn't mean I don't support trans, or men for that matter. This means that for one week a year, I am in a chosen space with other WBW celebrating THAT experience.
 

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Originally Posted by Magic Denise
I even thought of doing a workshop or two this year. I did two last year and really enjoyed the experience.
That's great, Denise. I always enjoyed the workshops most. What were yours about?
 

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Originally Posted by Jennifer3141
I support womyn who grow as little girls, who bleed, who bear children, who lose their breasts to cancer, who hit a glass ceiling at work, etc. etc.
What about womyn who do not share those experiences with you? What about womyn who never bled, never lost their breasts to cancer, never hit a glass ceiling? What about womyn who were born with intersexed features but identify as womyn? What about Anne Coulter, would she be allowed over a kind and sensitive transwoman? I don't understand how anyone could feel it's alright to draw the line just behind where they stand themselves. I don't understand that as feminist womyn, you feel it's ok to support the perpetuation of discrimination based on sexuality.
On the one hand, I hear people saying "I support transsexual people etc etc. I'm not saying they're not 'real womyn'" but then saying that it's somehow justifiable to descriminate against them on the basis that they are not womyn enough . It's so contradictory to me. Why can't I see the connection?
 

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I'm sorry it's contradicory to your viewpoint but as a WBW who worships the Goddess, it isn't contradiciory in mine. And frankly, since it's been been debated to the point where it has destroyed the Michfest board Politics section, I'm not debating the issue here either.

Strap On has proudly stolen 7 years worth of the debate from there and posted it at their site. You can go read it there.

Michfest is sacred WBW space. The workers who build fest every year, the attendees, and the womyn who own the company have decided to keep it WBW. I support those rights.

If you don't like the policy, don't go. If you don't support abortion, don't have one. I don't understand why anyone would "protest" fest.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Jennifer3141

Michfest is sacred WBW space. The workers who build fest every year, the attendees, and the womyn who own the company have decided to keep it WBW. I support those rights.

If you don't like the policy, don't go. If you don't support abortion, don't have one. I don't understand why anyone would "protest" fest.
The right to choose what to do with one's own body, and the right to exclude and discriminate against others, are not comparable.
 

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Thank you for drawing my attention to that board, Jennifer.
I have a better idea of all of this now. I find it really sad and frankly I'm surprised. But I see how it would be exhausting to rehash the same points over and over. I guess that since they make no real sense and contradict the theme, the questions will continue to arise. Such is the case when the answers are unsatisfying. One day, I trust that this devisiveness will seem universally silly. Until then, I'll continue to speak up on behalf of oppressed women everywhere.
 

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Originally Posted by frog
mamajama, I'm not transphobic. "Trans" does not a woman make.
This is really offensive to me. You don't get to decide who is (or is not) a woman. It's great that you have done work on trans issues, but it feels odd to me that you would even care when you so clearly discount their experiences.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jennifer3141
I support womyn who grow as little girls, who bleed, who bear children, who lose their breasts to cancer, who hit a glass ceiling at work, etc. etc.
I support all women. And I would think that a womyn's festival would, too.

I understand the need for woman-only spaces and I have enjoyed them myself. But wbw? Did that term even exist before the need arose to exclude some women?
 

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I was really faced with a stark example of the gender binary concept while writing a paper last term regarding transsexual inmates. And transsexual people as they fit into a very boxed-up legal system. We have a long way to go.

I feel most comfortable with the idea that "there is no 'natural' sex that exists outside of gendered discourse." And this to me does not negate the value of social and societal norms. They help all of us floundering humans make sense of our world.
But on the flipside, a balance (as always) must be sought. Those norms can also supress people from living up to or striving for their potential. I think that is one of the greatest damages we can inflict on our fellow human beings. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that the essence of law and manners is the venue we provide to others to live up to their potential. When we inhibit others by abusing, murdering, stealing, defining etc. we inhibit them and commit crimes (whether on or off the written rule of law).
So I see no moral justification in discriminating against or defining another human being. In fact---the opposite---I see it as a moral crime.

I think I went on a tangient. But dammit. I'm trying to live up to my potential.
 

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tara, I don't discount anyone's experiences, trans or otherwise. I don't see trans experiences and women's experiences as interchangeable, rather the same way that I don't see the experiences of women partnered with men as interchangeable with the experiences of women partnered with women.

I don't see what's so awful about stating that different groups' experiences are, in fact, qualitatively different.
 

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Originally Posted by frog
tara, I don't discount anyone's experiences, trans or otherwise. I don't see trans experiences and women's experiences as interchangeable, rather the same way that I don't see the experiences of women partnered with men as interchangeable with the experiences of women partnered with women.
How are any two women's experiences 'interchangeable'?
It sounds like you have set up some lines of distinction which may make sense to you, but they do not serve the purpose of feminism if they are made to divide and exclude. Sure a woman partnered with a man may have more shared experiences with other women partnered with men and enjoy certain aspects of privillege than women partnered with women would have. Those differences and similarities are certainly worth honouring. But to me this sounds like such desperate attempt at fitting in to a 'club' of sorts, that differences within groups and the infinte variety in women is being somwhow overlooked.
 

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Wow!

Michigan Women's Music Festival ends policy of discrimination against Transwomen

After 15 years of controversy, supporters welcome trans women to 'the land'

HART, MICHIGAN - The Michigan Women's Music Festival began admitting openly trans (transgender/transsexual) women last week, bringing success to a longstanding struggle by trans activists both inside and outside
the festival.

More here: www.camp-trans.org

Did anyone go? How was it?

I am so there next year.
 
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