I was late to the party in talking about fat shaming. I hadn’t bothered to contribute to that discussion, because some really talented people had already addressed it in, what I felt was a very satisfactory way. What I failed to contemplate was that, whether I had anything new or profound to say, that simply adding volume to the discussion was a help.
As that’s the case, I want to go back and do the same for last month’s kerfuffle over New York radio personality, Mister Cee. (Terrific discussion with actress Laverne Cox, author Janet Mock, and others found here: http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/what-dj-mister-cees-scandal-means-for-hip-hop/5230e99778c90a121000039d ) The overarching conversations about the ‘realness’ of transgender persons will be ongoing long after everyone forgets the Mister Cee incident, and merit exhaustive further discussion.
Janet Mock’s forthcoming book “Redefining Realness” (available here: http://janetmock.com/books/ ) takes on the issues of life as a transgender woman of color (and yes, the “of color” part of that has a HUGE impact on people’s lives that I can only ever try to understand.)
But, as Laverne Cox has mentioned, we don’t have a language for talking about preferring trans* people as romantic or sexual partners. The basic argument from the trans* side of this discussion has, up until now, seemed to largely demand that new words not be brought into existence, because trans* people should not be seen as a subset of their identified gender.
So, this is our new frontier. Is it okay to think of transgender people as unique, or does ‘transness’ need to be invisible?
Much more to come!