Thursday, January 27, 2011

Transsexuality Is A Medical Condition, Not A Community Identifier

There are times that Cathryn Platine and I are on opposite sides of debates in this community, but every now and then she says something that I just have to say amen too and I'm in lockstep agreement with her.

We've had a lot of sniping going on in the past two weeks about who is more 'transsexual than thou'.  In addition to not liking the heated internecine rhetoric going on between wings of the trans community,  I also agree and have since the 90's that the trans community shouldn't be using a medical condition (transsexuality) as a community identifier, much less a political one.

But Cathryn was more blunt about it than the diplomatic and historical context approach I took in that post.

Cathryn Platine: "Transgender" is an identity, a political motivated one. "Transsexuality" is a medical condition, one does not identify as a medical condition unless they wish to appear a fool. If you have cancer you are not a "cancer". If you have an ulcer you are not identified as being an ulcer American.
Amen, Cathy.
Transsexuality is a medical condition.  Transgender is a community identifier.   Granted it's close to the transgenderist that was coined by Virginia Prince who let's get real, hated on transwomen.

But the transgender word for political purposes does the trick in describing the vast array of gender variant humans.
Can we do a much better job in pointing out the differences between transsexuals, intersex people, crossdressers and genderqueer people?    Yes we can and should.  Do we need to do a better job of calling out the transwomen who hate on crossdressers and vice versa?  Damn straight we do.. 
But as I have said ad nauseum, our enemies aren't each other.   Our enemies are in the Religious Reich and the conservative movement who hate all of us irregardless of how we identify under the transgender political umbrella.  
If you don't like transgender, do what I do and simply call it the trans community.    But stop hating on each other and get it through your thick heads that transsexuality is a medical condition, not a community identifier.
TransGriot Note:  transgenderist was coined by Virginia Prince.   Transgender came into more popular usage as an umbrella term in the 1990's, but has been around since the 70's.

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