Wednesday, April 22, 2015

MichFest Dead After This 40th Anniversary Year

I'm one of the peeps in Trans World who could care less about the cesspool of transphobia known as the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, but I do support the people in our community who would like to have a chance to go to MichFest if the hypocritically transphobic 'womyn born womyn' policy weren't in effect.

The so called 'unofficial' policy allows trans men on 'The Land', but trans women aren't welcome.

But MichFest was co-founded and is owned by one of the trans community's long time oppressors in Lisa Vogel, a TERF who was one of the peeps who signed the 1977 Olivia Records Letter demanding the ouster of Sandy Stone from that feminist record label.

A petition initiated by Equality Michigan has called for a boycott of the festival until they end the policy, and artists such as the Indigo Girls and Nona Hendryx have joined that boycott.

The Equality Michigan petition contains these bullet points:
1. Demanding you end the "womyn-born-womyn" intention at Michigan Womyn's Music Festival.
2. Request that Lisa Vogel, as co-founder and owner, meet with leaders of the transgender community and enter the space with an open mind to the notion that transgender womyn are womyn too, and have shared in their experiences.
3. Asking artists, attendees, and vendors to act in harmony with their equal rights values and NOT attend the festival until the transgender discrimination ends, and instead support other women's events which are creating a safe space for transgender women so they can join as well.
4. Requesting that any artists participating this year speak against the policy while on stage.
One of the organizations that stepped up to call for MichFest to end their transphobic ways was the National Black Justice Coalition.
“Our transgender sisters are simply women and deserve to be treated as such. It is baffling that at MWMF -- an event organized by and built exclusively for women -- imposes such blatant discrimination against one of the most marginalized groups of women in our society,” said Sharon Lettman-Hicks, NBJC Executive Director and CEO. “NBJC joins with Equality Michigan and the host of other advocacy organizations calling on the organizers of MWMF to immediately end their policy of not welcoming transgender women. This unjust policy only perpetuates hate and stigma, and has no place in a space meant to empower women.”
The MichFest is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year and Lisa Vogel has announced this year will be the last

"I am writing to tell you that the 40th Festival will be the last Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. The spirit of this community will live on forever, the friends and family we have found on the Land are eternal. Everything we have created together will feed the inspiration for what comes next. It’s possible that I will come back with something else, or that other sisters will take the inspiration of the Michigan community and create the next expression of our Amazon culture. What is true for me is that now is the time to bring this 40-year cycle to a close, stepping out on joy at our most incredible anniversary celebration."

Yep, 40 years of anti-trans discrimination on 'The Land'.  Whoopee.  Good riddance.

The TERF's can whine the boycott killed MichFest all they want, but that would be a lie like everything else they have said about trans people since the 1970's has been. 

Lisa Vogel's stubborn insistence to cling to disco era racist and transphobic TERF hatred of trans women in a world that is rapidly evolving toward acceptance of trans women, is the reason MichFest is dying and will soon be on the ash heap of history.

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