From The Stranger

12 May

In what is soon to be last week’s The Stranger (Seattle’s alt. paper) there is one of the best articles about gender that I’ve ever read. When you read this story — from a straight, white, male — you start to see the shape of gender and sexual politics that our children will face.

With acceptance came the desire to take the next step, but when he told his new friends that he wanted to become a man, everyone became less accommodating: “In the lesbian community, we could express masculinity as much as we wanted, even to the point of growing facial hair, wearing men’s clothing, wearing a strap-on, or binding breasts. You could do all of that, but you had to do it in the context of the word woman.” This is because, the thinking goes, white heterosexual men “keep you down as you’re fighting to empower yourself. Our society sets us up as an enemy to overcome, and it happens to be embodied in that particular person I’m transitioning to.”

Besides what I think is one of the more cogent contextualizations of feminism and transgenderism there is also a lot about how gender is becoming more about how you are seen and less about actual plumbing.  Meaning that our kids are going to grow up in a society where gender is seperate from how you have sex, or pee, or how you look naked.  Imagining that world, in a non Jack Womack sorta way, is getting easier but I still feel a little left behind.  The changes in gender politics and feminism definitely make me feel old.

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