Tag Archive | male privilege

Mental Delusions and White MTF Late Life Transitioners

Over and over again, I encounter late life transitioners who are absolutely desperate to hold onto their conservative and Republican credentials. This tells me they’ve not really started to transition yet because if they had, if they had been out among other women and learned and seen what other women put up with from the right wing Neanderthal mouth breathers in the GOP, they either could not be Republicans or they have hearts of ice and stone filled with hate for their fellow human beings.

The GOP has lied about everything it touches. The GOP courted KKK votes in the south beginning with Richard Nixon, via the “Southern Strategy” as created by his campaign adviser, Kevin Phillips. This article is from 1970 from the New York Times where they interviewed Kevin Phillips to understand how he won the South. Now either all those hateful white supremacist George Wallace style voters all, down to the last man, woman, and child, suddenly had a conversion and began supporting civil rights for people of color… OR they were attracted to the GOP via a series of code words and phrases that signaled white supremacy and dismissal of the black man. Which seems more reasonable to you? Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

And this was not a one time thing either. Lee Atwater, in the middle 1980s, had his interview where he explained how they stopped saying “N*****, n*****, n*****!” and instead resorted to using code phrases like desegregation, forced busing, welfare bums, etc. Atwater was so upset with what he did with his life that he begged forgiveness on his death bed in the early 1990s for being a racist. Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

Another of Nixon’s men, John Erlichman, said this also: “The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.” Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

Even further, in 2005, Ken Mehlman, then RNC chairman, publicly apologized to the NAACP for the GOP’s long history of racist attacks against people of color, and for using people of color to induce fear in ignorant white voters. This is public information yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

The GOP has never once balanced a budget on budget cuts as they claim. The budget being balanced in the 1990s was a compromise of budget cuts in some areas, and substantial tax increases in other areas, including on the highest bracket income earners. But you won’t hear Newt Gingrich or Republicans admit that. Republican states are among the poorest in the USA with the states taking the most federal handouts being Republican 9 times out of 10. On the other end, blue states (Democrat controlled) pay more to Washington than they take back. So who’s the real deadbeats here? Sam Brownback’s Kansas application of libertarian right wing nonsense now has the state running deficits of incredible proportions for such a small and relatively poor state. Even other Republicans in Kansas want to reject that nonsense now. Likewise, Scott Walker has done no favors to Wisconsin or its residents, cutting the state university budget by $450 million just so he can spend $400 million on a new sports stadium. Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

The Republican Party in 2015 introduced over 110 anti-LGBT bills in states and the US Congress. Zero were introduced by Democrats. The Republican party introduced in states and the US Congress over 200 anti-LGBT bills so far in 2016. Zero were introduced by Democrats. The GOP just passed the most anti-LGBT party platform in its history, calling for the repeal of marriage equality, for open discrimination against transgender people, and for reparative therapy to be used on LGBT people, both children and any adults committed for being LGBT, despite the fact that no major medical organization considers being gay or trans as a mental health issue anymore. Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

That same party platform carries open unscientific lies, claiming children in LGBT households are more prone to drug use, criminal behavior, and mental health issues, yet the scientifically proven truth is exactly the opposite. Yet very few older white MTF transitioners ever know about this, let alone accept the truth of it.

Over and over again, I get the impression that older white MTF transitioner believe that this is just about their body. Take the hormones, get surgery if needed, and you’re ok, right? WRONG! If you are a woman, you need to learn about women’s experiences. You need to get out and make friends with cisgender women. You need to understand how often we get raped. You will rapidly find that you suddenly have more friends who’ve been raped than you ever openly knew before in your entire life, because male privilege was hiding that from you. You will discover that women get treated as sex objects whether we want this or not. You will find men talking over you and getting angry if you try to interrupt to take back the floor. You will find men looking at you, not as a human being, but as a piece of meat to be evaluated to be fucked or raped.

And once you begin to understand what it is to be a woman in today’s society, you begin to understand that your worst enemy are conservative white men – exactly the group you were part of before. You begin to grasp that, as an older white male, you were part of a sick, twisted, ugly privileged self-centered group of people who want the entire universe to revolve around them. You, as a trans woman, begin to relate directly to the crap that your friends of color, both trans and cis, are experiencing, and all the crap that goes with that. You begin to understand that suddenly you’re worth less in the marketplace, just because you are a woman, and if you fight back about it, you’ll get fired.

So what I see, every god damned time I encounter a “fresh off the boat” brand new older white MTF transitioner is someone who thinks they can somehow, magically remain a part of that privileged, self-centered, lying brigade of white men who think they deserve to control everything.

I got news for you, honey. You’re a woman now and in their eyes, you ain’t shit. So get with the program and start educating yourself. Make lots of cisgender female friends then listen to them! Listen to their health care issues, how white male doctors dismiss issues that those same doctors would take seriously with a white male. Listen to them as they try to tell you that Old White Guys™ want to control their vaginas. Listen to them as they try to explain how hard it is to raise kids when the father is a deadbeat and the social safety nets have been torn to shreds by Old White Guys™. Listen to them as they tell you how Old White Guys™ talk over them or dismiss their ideas, then turn around and agree when a man says the exact same thing you did just a few minutes before.

And once you start to listen, once you start to learn, unless your head is so far up your ignorant ass that you’re already dead from suffocation, you will start to open your mind and realize that the biggest enemy you have, right now, today, in 2016 are Republicans. I wish that was not the case, but that’s the truth. Maybe someday the GOP will decide to focus on liberty and “live and let live” as they did once a long, long time ago.

But that day is not today and that year is not this year. If you are a transgender woman and you’re voting Republican, you’re still trying to hide behind your white male privilege. And I can guarantee you one thing – eventually they will turn on you too.

I Had A Wonderful Ren Fest

For the weekend of November 7-10 (Friday through Monday), a large number of friends came into town for the Texas Renaissance Festival. It’s always good to see these particular faces and this time was no different, though seeing me may have been a little different for all concerned.

We had another great dinner Friday evening at Vero’s Italian Kitchen. Saturday at the Fest was interesting, as it always is, and led to all sorts of fun discussions among us. Saturday evening we all got together at Willie’s Hamburger place. My only real regret that evening was a friend who had wanted to come this year had passed away a few months previously and was no longer among us.

We did, however, discuss all manner of things, as we seemingly always do and just about nothing was off limits, including my own recent eye opening experiences, at which the other women present said “Welcome to the sisterhood” and “Now you see what it’s really like!” Let me assure anyone who doubts in the least, at all, there very definitely is such a thing as male privilege and I’m experiencing not having it anymore at all and it’s both amusing and annoying. And further, too many men in our culture do treat women as sexual objects instead of people. Believe me, I’m seeing that too, up close and personal.

I also am having trouble getting my head around men either coming on to me or men just looking at me in a clearly sexual manner. It comes with the territory, I know. And intellectually, I was ready for this and even had experienced it in limited ways in the past. But now, since I’d gone full time back in September, it was actually getting common. I understand the annoyance of that woman in the video that went viral and believe me, being a lot older, I don’t look near as pretty as she does, but those comments, leers, whistles, and other things are definitely out there. One fellow at the Ren Fest even looked me in the eye before giving me the “appraisal” look from head to toe, even while he was holding his wife’s hand as she had their baby on her shoulder. I just shook my head at that.

Part of the problem is also realizing what my friends keep telling me – I look very good for an older woman. Now I don’t have a full length mirror at home but there was one at the hotel and seeing myself in that and ready for the day’s activities at Ren Fest, I realized my friends were telling me the truth. I have a pretty nice figure. Of course, it’s one thing to hear certain words intellectually. It’s another thing to really feel them in your heart.

And Monday was some obligatory thrift shop hopping, this time mostly at the Salvation Army store in the next town over from where I live. We discovered that me being over 50 meant half off every Monday on everything for the 50+ crowd and there was also a half off Saturday for everyone in case I wanted to return for that. I’m planning to take my daughter with me there and perhaps a few other people as well. It should be fun.

Work continues to go very smoothly. I work for an awesome company and I appreciate that very much. They’ve made this process easier than I ever expected it to be. I am completely accepted at work and thoroughly supported on any issues I have had thus far.

There are other things I considered writing about here but I’ve abstained because there is someone who stalks me through this blog. I’ll just let her wonder at my early and unexpected Christmas gift. 🙂

Random Thoughts on Patriarchy, Gender, and World Views

Recently, at another online forum where I participate, a woman named Paula mentioned how other people’s perception of her changed as she went from self-identifying as a cross dresser to identifying as transgender then transitioning to live as a woman full time. As a cross dresser she found herself often disdained, even called “pervert” by some but as transgender transitioning the reactions generally became either empathetic or pity. Her post gave rise to lots of thoughts for me on this, but that forum is probably not the place for such a posting or discussion so I’ll do it here.

Our society is deeply wrapped up in its own creation – the gender binary. We’re taught that this is “normal”, so much so that it requires scholars actually digging for and interpreting what was obviously right in front of the faces of people in the past. For example, many ancient middle eastern societies recognized 3, 4, 5, and even 6 genders. The Code of Hammurabi has a section governing the fair treatment of “male daughters”. Native Americans embraced transsexual people as being of “two spirits” and often gave them elevated status in the tribe.

Yet in today’s society, largely shaped by its Judeo-Christian heritage, a heritage that is obsessed with male dominance, patriarchy, and two genders, people tend to see anyone outside the binary “norm” as problematic in different ways.

The gender binary you see in western civilization today is not “normal” for homo sapiens when viewed across history but it is “normal” within the context of our own civilization. I take some small comfort in that knowledge that our society itself is aberrant but I still have to deal with our current society which has self-defeating and crippling ideas about gender.

Having never publicly admitted to being a cross dresser, despite cross dressing most of my life in private, I’ve not had the experiences that Paula has. Yet it does not surprise me. The reaction to trans folk, especially transwomen is obvious. It’s either “you think you’re a woman” (as in the speaker does not actually believe it but goes along with you out of pity) or “you are a woman” (so there is some empathy, including over how difficult this must be) or “you’re a male no matter what you do” (which is outright rejection of your self-identification). But with cross dressers there is something else – “you’re a guy but you like women’s clothing?” which is seen as weird, hence the disdain.

What I find most amusing is those women, cis or trans, who even directly experiencing this yet continue to deny the impacts of patriarchy on women. But hey, there are people who still deny climate change, who deny the bad effects of smoking, and even deny that the earth is round so I guess this shouldn’t surprise me. People will defend their world view even violently rather than accept data that invalidates their world view, usually because their world view is part of their greater identity socially in some group. Risking their world view risks their place in their own social circles, hence the rejection of factual data that contradicts that world view.

In conclusion, it becomes obvious how deeply and badly gender binary patriarchy has shaped our current society, how crippling it is for those of us outside its norms, and even gives insights into how we might begin to change this. Changing a society’s deeply held gender beliefs is not something we will accomplish in our lifetimes but it is something we can work towards so that people someday can be who they are without fear of rejection or ostracism.

About Male Privilege

Cisgender male often do not believe that there is something like male privilege in existence. Even feminists have trouble identifying it and pointing it out clearly, probably because they never experience male privilege and then experience its lack. Natal males experience it constantly so never see it missing. Natal females experience its lack constantly so have trouble identifying it.

Interestingly, this is one area where transwomen are most able to support feminists, because often transwomen can provide actual examples of male privilege. Here are some anecdotal examples, names removed to protect those other persons.

One transwoman I know spoke about buying a new car as a woman for the first time. She said the initial experience was strange because she’d never been talked “down” to while buying a new car before. This continued until they moved on to actually negotiating over the car, where the salesman saw her legal name change and credit history. Suddenly, he was treating her like a male again. She said she was not even sure if the salesman knew what he had done, his treatment of different genders being so ingrained.

Another transwoman, in dealing with a particular bank, found them to be condescending. She too had undergone legal name change but not finalized all documentation yet. When she presented her name change paperwork along with her old “male” id, the tone of the discussion shifted, almost seamlessly and she too wondered if the individual involved even knew what had just occurred.

The following video exemplifies this sort of thinking, pointing it out, and telling women to not accept it.

People who deny that male privilege exists are ignoring very real evidence that it does exist – from transwomen who have seen both sides of the same coin directly.