Big Cis Bullies

victimcard

I´ve been wanting to write about this for quite some time, but did not get to it yet due to my own transition and mental balance taking prevalence over my opinion. However, a comic that was just published by Assigned Male Comics on their timeline, sparked my interest in topic again and makes me want to throw it into the conversation.

The comic depicts what I assume is the artist, criticizing scientific research in the transgender department. Above it, the title claims; “Looking for a biological cause for transness is neurosexist, transphobic, cisnormative and eugenist”. In text bubbles below it, the artist wonders what society will do if “they” find a biological cause for transness.

She proceeds to wonder if “they” will test people to see if they have the “trans gene” and if not, whether lack of a trans gene implies that certain people will be forced out of their rightful transition. While I usually love these deviations from hetero and cisnormative cartoons, and I liked most of her other art, I did not agree with her position.

The top “liked” comments on her publication were statements saying “scientific research in and by itself is not transphobic, but can actually contribute to the conversation… it is interpretations of science that could possibly be used to the detriment of transgender individuals“. Which is more or less what I posted as well.

The next thing I know, my comment was gone and so were all the other top comments. When trying to ask her why she had deleted the feedback, I noticed that I had been banned from the website at all. I watched the thread, and an explanation appeared; “I´ll delete comments supporting transness as a medical condition“.

Now hold on a minute. I never said that I thought transness was a medical condition. In fact, I never even gave my opinion on said issue. I merely stated that just like anything else, publications (whether religious, scientific or others) are open to interpretation. As a thank you for my feedback, I get cast as “another trans bully”.

Well, thank you so very much, I guess. Maybe my experience as a transgender person is less valid because I do not actually think that the entire cisgender society, and scientific research in itself, is mainly “out to get us”. While it is true that I feel cast aside often, and discrimination against transgender individuals is a fact, I don´t agree with the above.

I think that as a community, we are responsible for our own well-being, and while this includes acknowledging that discrimination exists, it also means acknowledging that we are not inherent victims. If anything, portraying ourselves as victims of the overlapping society, the Big Cis Bully, will do more harm than good.

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10 thoughts on “Big Cis Bullies

  1. It is super unfortunate when nuance gets lost in conversation like this. We research lots of things non-medical-condition-related genetic traits, and while yes, doing so always carries the potential that the information can be misused for eugenic purposes, as long as we don’t use the research results in those ways, or to gatekeep who gets to be seen as ‘really’ trans, or whatever else, these are the sorts of things that can be used to help us better understand humans and human diversity in general.

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    1. Agreed. I was discussing this with my friends on Facebook too, and one of them said that they thought the author had every right to delete comments that they did not agree with. I just think it´s sad that somebody with that much influence would decide what opinions are allowed and what opinions are not.

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      1. I mean, yeah, of course a person can maintain their space however they want. And you can go ahead and write your rebuttal here, as you did. But it’s unfortunate that in this case that makes a dialogue impossible.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You’d think people who do comics would *want* to have a discussion. It’s sort of counter-to the idea of any sort of commentary isn’t it? Weird. People who want to create a clever visual and don’t want to put the work in to honestly (and kindly/respectfully) back up their perspective or have it *gasp* potentially invalidated, just show me they are not confident or well read enough to be making their claims in the first place. I don’t have time for that sort of “discussion.” There’s nothing wrong with someone saying “you know I get that, and your’e right, but in the context of my comic I mean [insert point] specifically.” I’m preaching to the choir I know. And I get this picture of a party where certain people are getting ushered out the door so that all the cliquey folks can snicker and shrug their shoulders in knowing, exclusive, disgust.

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    1. Exactly – art and writing can give a platform to topics that would otherwise go by unnoticed. That´s why I think her opinion and her creations are pretty important. I do also get this feeling of a clique that you are describing, but the thing is that cliques like this seem to be pretty common in “our” community. As with cliques in the regular cisgender community, for that matter. Maybe it isn´t that different.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I wonder what she thinks of all the scientific research that has shown neurological and genetic influences on the development of transsexualism. Are they not true because they don’t fit her beliefs? If empirical evidence are in her opinion “neurosexist” (which they are.) are facts suddenly not facts because they aren’t politically correct?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is possible that she thinks the research has been carried out with bad intentions, I guess. I can understand – in the past, western society conducted “science” that was supposed to demonstrate how people of other ethnicity had less brain capacity than people who were Caucasian. So it is true that science can be used for a terrible purpose, but as long as this isn´t true, it seems irrational to just reject all research…

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  4. I’ve never blocked anyone from commenting on my blog – if I thought they were commenting in good faith. I’ve deleted a couple of obnoxious trolling comments – but they were from people who were clearly not part of the community.
    We should be able to argue and disagree – that is how we grow and how we convince each other of our validity. I feel like I was “born this way” but I respect people who feel that they chose to be this way – I feel like I chose how to handle it – which is different.

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    1. I´ve found the writing community to be more open about discussion somehow. Here, we can mostly speak our minds and I´ve found most people to be understanding, even if they don´t agree. It could be a social media thing, where people are used to posting tons of information, but not so used to a good discussion.

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