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Author Topic: Oregon bar owner fined $400,000 for discriminating against transgender customers  (Read 6924 times)

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Offline DarklingAlice

As far as I can tell from the article and the conversation here, the owner has banned "a specific set of people that are trans", not "all trans people".  If it was the latter, I would agree with you, 100%.  But I think that's where the disconnect lies, to be honest.  I suppose the question is, if a random trans person that wasn't a part of the group decided to go to the bar after the group was banned, would there be any problems?  If that random person would still be banned from the bar, or be harassed by the owner and staff, then I agree, there's a problem.  But if he would be able to go in, have a drink, chat with some people, and have a generally good time?  Much less of a "discrimination" case here, in my opinion.

I concur completely. This would be the litmus test of discrimination. But based on the reasoning presented by the proprietors that they do not wish to be seen as running a 'tranny' bar or gay bar, I have to conclude that this is exactly what they are saying.

Offline Blythe

I'm kind of curious. The owner mentions he doesn't want his bar to be perceived as a "gay bar" or a "tranny bar," but only a group of trans* individuals were asked to leave.

Does anyone know if the bar owner asked anyone gay to leave? Gender =/= sexuality, so the T-girls were barred on gender orientation. I'm just curious if any individuals who were gay but not trans* were denied access as well?
« Last Edit: September 25, 2013, 11:46:50 PM by Blythe »

Offline kylie

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     When he goes amd puts "gay" and "tranny" in the same sentence like that, I'm not sure we can assume that he treats gender as something apart from orientation. 

I rather suspect he's blurring them, or perhaps he's acting on the assumption that someone else will.

Offline Imogen

     When he goes amd puts "gay" and "tranny" in the same sentence like that, I'm not sure we can assume that he treats gender as something apart from orientation. 

I rather suspect he's blurring them, or perhaps he's acting on the assumption that someone else will.

Yeah! He said that!

Let's NOT look at his actions, or the fact he's hosted them for a year! Let's ignore that the group in question had been asked to leave by others in the past. Let's not take into account that his bar had a reputation as LGBT friendly.

He put 'gay' and 'tranny' in the same sentence like that: he's racist, facist bigot and that's all there's too it!

Offline Chris Brady

I'm kind of curious. The owner mentions he doesn't want his bar to be perceived as a "gay bar" or a "tranny bar," but only a group of trans* individuals were asked to leave.

Does anyone know if the bar owner asked anyone gay to leave? Gender =/= sexuality, so the T-girls were barred on gender orientation. I'm just curious if any individuals who were gay but not trans* were denied access as well?
Here's the thing, how would he know if they were Trans or Gay?  Unless they somehow brought attention to themselves.  Men and women go out in groups all the time of all sorts of sexual orientation and genders, so how did he know?  Well, in this case, they brought attention to themselves.

Part of the issue with the outrage over this (and I'm not saying that I've seen it here, but I've seen it on another site) is that we're not always given all the facts, and even if we were, we don't always accept them.

Reminds me of an article a ways back about a pair of lesbians who got kicked out a McDonalds.  At first, the McD's got lambasted and vilified for kicking these poor Lesbians, and when a Catholic priest praised the McD's then all hell broke loose.  But it turns out, that according to several other eyewitnesses, the two ladies were making out in ways that no one (of any orientations) should in a family restaurant, and that they were kicked out because of their behaviour, not their orientation.  The more that got reported, the less we heard about the outrage surrounding it.  Until we forgot it.

Offline gaggedLouise

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I'm kind of curious. The owner mentions he doesn't want his bar to be perceived as a "gay bar" or a "tranny bar," but only a group of trans* individuals were asked to leave.

Does anyone know if the bar owner asked anyone gay to leave? Gender =/= sexuality, so the T-girls were barred on gender orientation. I'm just curious if any individuals who were gay but not trans* were denied access as well?

The trouble is that newspapers (and the Huff Post is effectively an established newspaper) typically do NOT give that kind of information away to the readers, even if they have trustworthy information, written or oral, in this kind of story. News outlets often know or learn of a lot more than they share with the readers. They don't want to get embroiled in new court cases or media feuds on slander, finger-pointing, allegations of covert sexism, classism or negative portrayal ("bashing") of a certain city or whatever, so they typically don't hand out the details beyond the relatively small part that they judge necessary to keep the story together - or to create the spin they want.

In cases such as O.J. Simpson or Bernie Madoff, you'll find that some newspapers give a lot of detail, sometimes detail that's later found to have been invented or exaggerated. In most ordinary courtroom battles and crime stories, much less detail and next to none about precisely how someone behaved. That's just how news outlets operate and it's what you learn at media colleges.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2013, 07:11:36 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Kythia

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I'm kind of curious. The owner mentions he doesn't want his bar to be perceived as a "gay bar" or a "tranny bar," but only a group of trans* individuals were asked to leave.

Does anyone know if the bar owner asked anyone gay to leave? Gender =/= sexuality, so the T-girls were barred on gender orientation. I'm just curious if any individuals who were gay but not trans* were denied access as well?

According to the court records, yes.  It was the Rose City somethings that were banned, not all of whom were T-girls or had other gender identity issues.  One of the aggrieved was the boyfriend of a t-girl (IIRC he's the last one named but too lazy to check).  The T-girls absolutely weren't banned on gender orientation, that's made pretty explicit by both sides.

Offline DarklingAlice

The problem with claiming they weren't banned on the basis of gender identity and orientation is that it flies in the face of what the proprietors actually said.

As a thought experiment, imagine the Rose City Somethings were a group of young black people. Let's say that they were disruptive. Let's say they were bad for business. Let's say they were making other patrons uncomfortable. Let's even say that maybe they were even maybe doing something actually illegal. As the proprietor you can say: "Hey, you can't do X, Y, or Z here." or "You can't have your specific group here unless you make some kind of arrangement with the owner." or "X, Y, Z, specific people are banned." or "The Rose City Somethings are not welcome in this bar." Or a slew of other perfectly valid reasons to exercise your legal right to refuse service to these individuals. But I think we can all agree it would be repellent to say "You can't be here because we don't want this bar to be associated with niggers."

If what you mean is that you don't want a specific group in your bar there are multiple non-offensive, non-discriminatory ways to make that statement. They chose the offensive, discriminatory one. I think that's telling.

Offline Kythia

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My issue is that the Rose City somethings were not an entirely T-girl organisation.  In fact, they predominantly catered to crossdressers.  He said he was worried about the place becoming a "tranny bar".  Presumably tranny being transvestite.

In short, this was a clothing issue.  That's what I was getting at very early in the thread when I talked about bikers.  They weren't banned for gender identity: that's not what the owner said they were banned for, that's not what they claimed they were banned for and that's not what the court case found they were banned for.

However, his policy was found to disproportionately and unfairly affect those with gender identity issues, hence him being found guilty (or liable or whatever the hell the term is for a civil case).  As I've mentioned before, I don't particularly agree with the ruling but even the ruling as is didn't suggest they were banned for gender identity issues.

Offline kylie

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Quote from: Kythia
My issue is that the Rose City somethings were not an entirely T-girl organisation.  In fact, they predominantly catered to crossdressers.  He said he was worried about the place becoming a "tranny bar".  Presumably tranny being transvestite.

In short, this was a clothing issue.  That's what I was getting at very early in the thread when I talked about bikers.  They weren't banned for gender identity: that's not what the owner said they were banned for, that's not what they claimed they were banned for and that's not what the court case found they were banned for.  However, his policy was found to disproportionately and unfairly affect those with gender identity issues, hence him being found guilty (or liable or whatever the hell the term is for a civil case).  As I've mentioned before, I don't particularly agree with the ruling but even the ruling as is didn't suggest they were banned for gender identity issues.
  ... and ...
Quote
According to the court records, yes.  It was the Rose City somethings that were banned, not all of whom were T-girls or had other gender identity issues.  One of the aggrieved was the boyfriend of a t-girl (IIRC he's the last one named but too lazy to check).  The T-girls absolutely weren't banned on gender orientation, that's made pretty explicit by both sides.

     Link to documents and quote some parts you got this from, please? 

Obviously the court disagreed at some level when they leveled the fine...  But I'd like to know exactly what you're referring to.  This is asking us to buy a wholesale summary of 'all' the documents, with no direct citations.
--------------------------------------------------------------
 
     Beyond that:  A society having gender issues, does not require all the people in the room to have and be concerned with that issue 100% and nothing else, that minute, for it to be a potential basis for discrimination.  There is also no hard and fast rule that every issue is only about gender OR orientation OR community ideas about how to talk (or not) about sex in public.  You also seem to think that clothing choices of a TV are not comparable to any gender issues trans would ever be concerned about -- and I disagree completely.  In fact, many of these things overlap too.  So it's possible to end up discriminating against a group labeled as being "about" one, while looking supposedly at another. 

     But here, it sounds to me like you are saying:  If in fact, some of them were trans and some were tv or cd....  Therefore, you conclude that because there was a mix in the group where some identified as "transgender' and some didn't, the decision couldn't have had anything to do with gender on the owner's part just because some of the people banned -- you think -- weren't at all concerned about gender?  I'm skeptical.  Now if the court says there was discrimination but it wasn't about gender issues, then I dunno mayyyybe -- but please show me where. 

By analogy:  If there are 4 black people and 1 white person in a group and they're asked to leave and told people will think the place is becoming a "ghetto," I honestly don't care what people in the group did or didn't think about race.  It's entirely possible race wasn't on their mind at the time because they have lives to lead and things to do, too.  Better, there might be some people in the analogous group who are only part black, don't have "dark" skin so much as a more celebrated tone of soft mocha -- but they have a few habits more common to black communities.  That is similar to how American society, in a quite derogatory light, sees TV's in relation to trans and gender issues.  But  I wonder what was the owner thinking when he said "ghetto" directly to them, referring to them all as a group that he would -- positively -- deal with as a unit, and made it part of his justification. 

     And again, if you say having some tv/cd and some trans means there cannot be gender discrimination, then that is creating a very neat excuse for discrimination against trans groups, if you ask me.  What's the difference between a non or pre-op trans and a cd/tv?  Who is going to check under the pants to see which this is -- the court doctor?? Show me that all trans were never cd or tv, and show me that all trans may never cross dress...  On and on and on.  Bear in mind also, that it's the owner who is going to do the effort at banning.  Again, it doesn't matter so much what how many people in the group say they are or not.  Objectively, there's loads of room for discrimination based on gender issues.  Whether it's nasty or careless, and how many people in the group identify as what particular shade of orientation or gender, does not change that.

     What you wear can be a gender issue -- particularly so long as others insist upon treating it as a gender issue.  There isn't so much acceptance of transvestites and they don't have the same level of legal protection as transgender (in this sort of discussion, saying transsexual actually starts for once to seem more clear!).  But clothing is gendered and you  still end up with a situation where essentially, someone is picking on someone over gender presentation.  Whether he's looking at people changing sex, only taking hormones, or simply wearing feminine or masculine clothing without trying or managing to "pass" as male or female at the time...  It's all a gender problem.  It's all about what sort of performances (clothing, talk, displays of affection, what have you) people accept with what bodies or histories.  Now in effect drawing a false division between trans and tv/cd when in fact they may be together regularly and for some good reasons (!), it seems to boil down to just:  But, but, transvestites are not treated as nicely as transgender!  That's true.  That may be a convenient systemic explanation for part of the discrimination -- but still discrimination.  And btw, often still about gender too. 

     I suppose you might find more to fuss about whether there are enough precedents for the law to even recognize transvestites as people to be treated as a class for that purpose, or not...  Although the federal government has started to at least recognize the activity of some less conventional choices of gendered dress as worthy of protection alsoThat is true even though I believe, they've been thinking of MtF trans in the cases I'm aware of.  But if it applies to them, how can it not apply to TV's?  Seems to me for the federal government to act that way, would violate equal protection, etc.  [Edit: Wrong.  I forgot.   There was a case where a "plain old" (my " and sarcasm intended with the point) woman was defended against allegations that her attire failed to conceal her ample curves at work...  Still a gender problem!  Okay, if it applies to a woman, how long can it not apply to TVs or CDs and meet "equal protection" when what it protects is a right to choice of dress?]  So it's more a problem that more commonly, if anything people think TV's and CD's (particularly the "M dressing too feminine" angle) deserve to be dissed, or oh that just can't be helped.

     How you talk about sexuality, or what you display in public can be an orientation issue and I would say, also a gender issue too -- again, is it okay for women who "pass" to hug and laugh and joke about sex, but maybe not for those who don't "pass"?  If in fact trans groups or gay groups are sometimes more vocal and visible or more sex-positive in public, that's one thing.  But it's some work to prove that other types of people are not allowed to do something precisely comparable in that space, or why what the trans/tv what have you does is unacceptable precisely.  Particularly after many months of them attending the place.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 11:57:47 AM by kylie »

Offline Kythia

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*sigh*

Really Kylie?

The link to the documents I've already posted once and frankly reading them yourself isn't a particularly unreasonable thing to ask. 

In fact, having read the conversation might even be considered by some to be a prerequisite.

Offline kylie

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The link to the documents I've already posted once and frankly reading them yourself isn't a particularly unreasonable thing to ask. 

In fact, having read the conversation might even be considered by some to be a prerequisite.
          You appear to enjoy making your own rules and procedures for the conversation -- sometimes in ways that are obviously impractical -- without addressing my substantive points at all.   

You said:
Quote
The T-girls absolutely weren't banned on gender orientation, that's made pretty explicit by both sides.
     (I'm thinking there, you actually meant "based on gender identification" - as opposed to say, based on sexual orientation.  "Gender orientation" is kind of unusual language.)

          I asked you to cite where the parties say it was not a question of gender discrimination. 
          If you know they said that, then you could at least say what section of this 57 pp. document you found it in (although, what pages would be ideal).  The legal documents have a lot of jargon and formality, and they are 57 pp. long.  They also happen to involve a fair bit of pain and tension and complexity to report on -- as you should know, if you actually read them.  So for you to demand that others read them all if they want to check what you're asserting came from those documents -- with the apparent  presumption that if they do, they will reach your conclusions about the whole thing when you have not cited any particular passages...  That is probably asking rather much of quite a few people here.  We don't all come to Politics to be quizzed on whether we read every single word that others did of however many treatises they feel like.  Sometimes we want to get on to the point -- do things make sense to us, or not.

          Now, having read several parts of the document closely, I still think you're probably misrepresenting people. 
           From what I am seeing so far, the "T-Girls" (multiple members, as a group, varieties of more particular identity notwithstanding) are not saying that.  They are saying they felt there was discrimination against "transgender" and related gender presentations. 

I also rather suspect some of them would laugh at the court decision for trying to define "transgender" as a singular sexual orientation.  I sort of do.  That part is just a conceptually messed up vehicle, and it boggles my mind, precisely how anyone else could reasonably use it as a precedent.  But if there was discrimination, at least it's a vehicle that ends up at a reasonable place.

Btw, there is actually some language on p. 3 in the Findings, running that the case involved "sex, sexual orientation, and [once "and", once "or"] gender identity."  That could confuse things a bit there.  I'm not honestly sure whether it's boiler plate that goes with any prosecution under these laws...  Or, just maybe someone woke up and realized yeah, these things are probably linked somehow anyway, so let's be safe and use the inclusive language here... 
           

          Now for examples.  Doing my best to type this out, as I don't have a neat way to copy text from the PDF.  You say everyone agrees no gender identity was at issue?  Well, that's not what these people felt at the time.  So, now that you've effectively demanded I give evidence first when all you gave was a blanket claim -- will you show me your evidence?   

Victoria Nolan pp. 25 (line 23) -- page 26 (line 19): 
          As I understand it, Nolan was then actively considering having the sex reassignment procedure.  What many people would call (and some people might say it only  after the fact) a pre-op trans.     
          "The voicemails were the first time Nolan experienced a business, as opposed to an individual, 'taking exception' to her and made her fearful that this would keep happening to her in public establishments.  She had just 'locked in' her surgery date for sexual reassignment surgery when she heard the voicemails and began to question if she could handle this type of occurrence...  Whenever she walked into a new public place, she wondered whether she would be helped or asked to leave."

Amy Lynn, who had been dressing "as a woman for her entire life," and in public in that fashion from sometime in 2008 (unspecified, but a year or two perhaps before the case): 
(p. 18 lines 7-8, 16-21) 
          "She felt angry at first... then hurt, when it seemed like everything was going so well.  She was offended by the voicemails and would not have gone back to the P-Club after that for any reason.  After hearing the voicemails, she quit going out for almost three months, during which time she dressed as a woman at home but stopped going out in public dressed as a woman.  She lost 15 pounds during that time and limited her socializing."

Kelley Davis (p. 20, lines 3-9)
           "Previously Davis had been asked to leave several places because she is transgendered and the voicemails were 'just another one  on top of the ones that I've already had happen' and 'another example of being transgendered in this society and being told that you don't belong.'"


          Looking at what the plaintiffs actually submitted to the court, at least so far: I don't see how you conclude that they were not talking about issues of gender identity.  What each of them happened to identify as at the time isn't the problem -- the problem is that what the owner said and did made them feel there was discrimination against a certain gender presentation, or against a range of identities they might wish to take on, and/or for which they felt some sympathy.

          I wonder if maybe, you went looking for some narrow thing -- you wanted plaintiffs to either say some precise magic words, "gender identification issue" or else, you're happy to assume that isn't what they meant.  But as with many socially difficult issues and painful personal experiences, people often talk around what they experienced exactly, but --if you are aware of the gender issue -- then the significance of the situation for that issue, is staring you right in the face.  If a woman says she felt "trapped" or "violated" but doesn't say the word "rape" or "assault" are you going to argue just based on that oh, it couldn't have been rape...?  Much like that. 

« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 03:15:26 PM by kylie »

Offline kylie

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          Finally, I really can't get over your claim that if they had any internally varied gender presentations, there could not have been gender discrimination against them all as a group. 

Quote from: Kythia
My issue is that the Rose City somethings were not an entirely T-girl organisation.  In fact, they predominantly catered to crossdressers.  He said he was worried about the place becoming a "tranny bar".  Presumably tranny being transvestite.

In short, this was a clothing issue.  That's what I was getting at very early in the thread when I talked about bikers.  They weren't banned for gender identity: that's not what the owner said they were banned for, that's not what they claimed they were banned for and that's not what the court case found they were banned for.  However, his policy was found to disproportionately and unfairly affect those with gender identity issues, hence him being found guilty (or liable or whatever the hell the term is for a civil case).  As I've mentioned before, I don't particularly agree with the ruling but even the ruling as is didn't suggest they were banned for gender identity issues.

         More btw here, but:  Huh....  You said first it was found to affect those with gender identity issues -- but then the court documents (p. 36) also seem to say, according to the court, perhaps it was more about sexual orientation.  Which is nonsensical to me once they say that "transgender" is the orientation in question -- just maybe it was actually somehow, indirectly discrimination against gays, if they prefer to go there? -- but it does make for some confusion.  Now be all that as it may...

          How in the world is clothing -- particularly, cross-dressing not a gender identity issue??!  I believe it all but screams "gender" in the wording: Crossing, well, what did you think?  And here we have a group that in the court documents, even might be interpreted as specifically including cross-dressers in the very same category as "transgender."  It seems like you bought the court's claim it wasn't most obviously gender in question -- which I don't...  Yet apparently, you threw out what the T-Girls (or if you prefer, just maybe their legal team) apparently say their identity as a group would actually involve -- even though that was also available for consideration in the document (p. 27):

"Transgendered persons include transsexual persons, persons who are undergoing or in the process of undergoing gender transition, people who may live part time as one gender and part as the other, people who cross dress by wearing clothing typically associated with the other gender, and people who appear 'gender non-conforming.'"

          Granted not even many trans would really buy into such an inclusive definition.  But in this case, it seems the T-Girls as a group did just that.  Yet here you are saying, oh but clothing choices can be picked over -- that isn't gender discrimination, because cd's are potentially called "trannies" -- but not trans.  Well, that's your demanding that they pick an identity box you already recognize, and refusing to consider some gender options they actually care about.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 03:12:39 PM by kylie »

Offline Kythia

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          You appear to enjoy making your own rules and procedures for the conversation -- sometimes in ways that are obviously impractical -- without addressing my substantive points at all.   

Dear lord, Kylie.

You resurrected a week dead thread to ask for links to documents that were posted and discussed at length a month ago.  You've done similar in other threads and then, when it was pointed out to you that you clearly hadn't read what people had said, you claimed that you didn't see why you had to.

This is why you have to.  I didn't address your "substantive points" because you'd made it pretty clear you hadn't read any of the conversation before and so I didn't bother reading them.  I'm not made of free time, and the odds were overwhelmingly that they would be a pointless rehashing of an old conversation. 

This isn't imposing my own rules, Kylie, this is simply pointing out that if you are joining a conversation where the entire past history is easily available then people will be irritated when you utterly ignore it and even defend the fact you did.  Haven't read your substantive points.  I'm gonna now, actually, but didn't at the time because everything about the start of your post showed you had no idea what the conversation was about and the start is where I, well, started.

I'm honestly trying to explain here, Kylie.  I've written and rewritten this a few times to tone down any potential offense (as opposed to, I dunno, instruction I guess) that's in it and if there's still some then I apologise. 

But that's why I ignored your post, Kylie. 

Edit:  meaning altering typo
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 03:56:43 PM by Kythia »

Offline kylie

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          Yes, I realize it's all very comfortable to give some quip about how you talked about something weeks or months ago -- totally in spite of the fact that the question at hand was because of something you said quite recently, and my questions are about those direct quotes.  And saying no one should be allowed to respond a week later about a political issue?  That's just petty. 

You say what everyone, all parties to the case, said means just one thing:  I don't believe some of them said so at all, and that is a fundamental fact of the whole case.   So, if they did say that, can you show me.   That's it.  To me, those are pretty obvious and pressing questions.  It doesn't matter when I read it -- and here, you are still going on with this recently!  I really don't see how insisting that someone go back to some unspecified place ages earlier makes it any clearer.  I think your recent (as far as I could tell, your current) language is at best strange and in the question of what the parties (as a whole) said, simply mistaken.

          If you say something that sounds really incorrect or problematic, yeah people are going to show up and challenge you on where you got it.  At that point:  All this l the fuss about, "Oh, why didn't you ask sooner, surely we have said all that could ever need to be said' actually makes you sound less reasonable to me . 

By the way, I actually think that sort of 'but it's all been covered' is sometimes used more to prevent anyone having a serious enough conversation to get excited, rather than saying anything much about what actually transpired.  This isn't some court of law where everything must only be introduced once, where everyone must agree or shut up at once, and we have a baliff to make sure, and a Quiz Nazi to check who memorized what for how long.  And if it were, all these direct quotes people are firing for pages on end, would be completely illegal.

          I'll be happy to await an answer.  That is at your leisure, even.  I may not notice if it's a year later, of course.  But in any case, I also won't come around trying to claim you have some pattern of being obnoxious if you have other things in life you'd like to do for a while.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2013, 05:15:07 AM by kylie »

Offline gaggedLouise

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         More btw here, but:  Huh....  You said first it was found to affect those with gender identity issues -- but then the court documents (p. 36) also seem to say, according to the court, perhaps it was more about sexual orientation.  Which is nonsensical to me once they say that "transgender" is the orientation in question -- just maybe it was actually somehow, indirectly discrimination against gays, if they prefer to go there? -- but it does make for some confusion.  Now be all that as it may...

          How in the world is clothing -- particularly, cross-dressing not a gender identity issue??!  I believe it all but screams "gender" in the wording: Crossing, well, what did you think?  And here we have a group that in the court documents, even might be interpreted as specifically including cross-dressers in the very same category as "transgender."  It seems like you bought the court's claim it wasn't most obviously gender in question -- which I don't...  Yet apparently, you threw out what the T-Girls (or if you prefer, just maybe their legal team) apparently say their identity as a group would actually involve -- even though that was also available for consideration in the document (p. 27):

"Transgendered persons include transsexual persons, persons who are undergoing or in the process of undergoing gender transition, people who may live part time as one gender and part as the other, people who cross dress by wearing clothing typically associated with the other gender, and people who appear 'gender non-conforming.'"

          Granted not even many trans would really buy into such an inclusive definition.  But in this case, it seems the T-Girls as a group did just that.  Yet here you are saying, oh but clothing choices can be picked over -- that isn't gender discrimination, because cd's are potentially called "trannies" -- but not trans.  Well, that's your demanding that they pick an identity box you already recognize, and refusing to consider some gender options they actually care about.


Kylie, not all mtf crossdressers wish to be considered female or to step inside womanhood - as in: changing one's ingrained behaviour, some of one's ways of talking, exchanging part of (or all of) the mental and social power relations your-self is entwined in, all of those...to "female mode". To some, it's the displacing and sort of constructed, the theatre bit that makes the central turn-on. And if that's what it is about, I doubt that it should be seen as touching at the root of that person's gender, or their perception of their own sex.

Most people who are into mtf crossdressing on any level enjoy the feel of female clothing, its colourful repertory, fabrics, the potential for wowing others, or the delicious, frankly erotic turn-on from wearing hose and skirts; but to some the clothing isn't the main thing, it's about leaving masculinity as gender behind and making yourself at home inside being a woman. And being accepted for it (which is often quite hard in vanilla society, we all know that). Yes, I want that aspect and I think it's what you want too, but I've known crossdressers who were not at all interested in being treated like girls beyond a very theatrical level.

Consider Bowie as Ziggy Stardust! We'll leave his bisexuality claim aside, he still cut an amazing figure in female gear. Did he want to be seen as a woman, period? Did he even want Ziggy to be considered a woman, even if it were a "constructed", consciously styled lady? No, likely not, even if he wore his hair long and flowing years before he got into this. He was doing crossdressing in a way that sort of wanted not to fully pass. It's not something I pass judgment on, and I love Bowie, but it's different to when you want to be seen and spoken of as a woman, have sex like a woman, get somehow used to seeing your own kind in seductive and half-nude poses on billboards and glossy ads everywhere, or seeing women getting casually ignored and jibed at and realize that "now I am one of them, we're in the same crowd" (whether one has actually gone through SRS and/or hormones or not), want to share and endure what a woman may have to do and endure*.

I admit 'T-girl' often implies some "hardcore genderbending", persons who really want, or feel a need, to shed maleness and present themselves as women, 'real women', but it seems to be clear that the Rose City group included different kinds of people, including some who were not TG or crossdressers at all, but ordinary gays and bisexuals.



*I'm not implying that anyone would have to be female to take a stand against sexism, discrimination and gender-based violence. Of course not - just as not only blacks need to respond to anti-black oppression and racism. But the dynamic of someone's personal response changes some way for most of us if you're feeling "this is my own kind getting spat upon, belittled or beaten up".
« Last Edit: October 04, 2013, 06:50:05 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline kylie

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          Yeah, Louise, I wouldn't dispute a lot of that as far as it goes -- but it doesn't make me satisfied with the way Kythia tried to explain (and I think, rather dismiss) the whole case.  First, if you look at the complaints of the T-Girls I quoted, those say to me that they stopped or felt threatened in certain social settings, certain gendered behaviors.  They do not read to me as only saying "Look, I lost a sexual outlet and dropped into depression" etc. (although that would be bad enough).  They suggest a lot more than that to me. 

          Are you trying to say that this only applies to a few people in the group, and not all of them -- that some, probably more of the cd's, only lost a sexual outlet and not a social one?   In general...  I'm kind of skeptical when we're talking about a bar, a social setting where people mainly sit around and chat -- not some fetish club where they mainly go at it on the furniture! But, I can see how some (I would say, really some more exclusive and more conventional) trans will be more sympathetic to that point of view.  So, if you want to pick a really narrow definition of trans that would exclude cd's from the group on the rationale that too many cd's are getting more sexual thrill than "permanent" gender transformation what have you, you can go there.  And in doing so, perhaps you'd neglect the fact that in this case, the group constructed itself to include cd's and TV's -- along with self-identified trans! -- explicitly. 

          But I still think there are bigger issues at stake here.  To be fair, much as you say: I for example, may find it easier to "get excited" by clothing than to pass.  And sure, there are some people who say they aren't women inside, or never have any interest in passing.  I myself have a lot more "why do I have to choose" times on the whole.  That isn't really the central issue for me here, though. 

          The question is could it be gender discrimination.  That is a social arrangement wider than what that one person feels -- it's simply a question of whether some of this discrimination falls under gender.  In other words, what are people looking for or not when they think "gender discrimination." 

          You have to recognize that socially, it's less acceptable and less feasible for many on the MtF side to transform or to attempt passing at all.  It doesn't all happen in some kind of vacuum where sexual interest obviously preceded social and gender interests for everyone.  Social pressures full of gender expectations were crafting all of that at the same time!  So again I say, it's not just a question of how the person identifies themselves.  It's a question of how in the society, people can decide to single them out and push them out.  And there, you get gender.  I think that is also part of why the documents end up at some places saying this was a problem for sexuality "or," and at other places (not far away at all) "sexuality and" gender.

           As I understand it this is a group that was together for a reason, that chose to include people identifying as cd, tv, pre-op, non-op, post-op whatever.  And I imagine that is part of why the documents offer that definition of trans as including cd's.  Now I grant you it isn't the most popularly accepted definition and it may be a definition that some trans -- in their fear of being confused with those cd's who may be "too sexual" or "not woman enough," will prefer to reject.  But I think it's useful here because it encourages us to think about what common issues did bring all these people together in the same place:  They are not simply issues of sexual orientation.  At the least, they are often gendered too.

          If you see otherwise in the documents by all means point it out to me how...  But I will venture, many of these things cannot logically be reduced to involve only sexual orientation:  Why don't various people want cd's (or TV's, or much the same even trans they read as "too masculine" I dare say) in the women's bathroom...  Who exactly may have been talking "too much" about sex (not just what kind of topic)...  Does the word "tranny" really refer only to cd/tv, or could it just as easily refer to trans?  (How do you know for sure who passed for whose gaze?)  I bet we could find some more. 

          Here it isn't even a question of who among the T-Girls identified as what.  These are things that in the whole society, are gender problems too.  Someone crossed a line, broke some gender rules (a bunch of someones in the group broke lot of them, probably -- trans or cd quite regardless in my opinion!), and someone freaks out.  That's it.  Whether or not you or Ziggy or whoever wants to see cd/tv as "woman enough" to be involved with gender in a way that whatever standard you prefer will accept them as "trans", doesn't sway me.  Quite regardless of that...   The society at large does treat them, probably right in alongside some of the trans identifying as 100% woman and dying to be so) as gender violators.  Thus, we get a case about gender discrimination.  That's all.   
« Last Edit: October 04, 2013, 01:52:10 PM by kylie »