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Thread: LGB... and T?

  1. #1

    Default LGB... and T?

    So this has been bugging me for a while, and I might have asked about it before.

    Why are transgender people considered to be the same "group" as gay, lesbian and bi people?

    I really don't see the connection. The issues of their respective fields are totally different, the way I see it. To me, it feels like having a group for "handicapped and black rights". I'm not saying that they shouldn't have a group to further their rights, but I don't get why they just lump themselves together.

    Even if you look at marriage, it seems to be a purely LGB issue. The issue is whether they are legally the same sex as the other person or not, and being transgendered isn't really taken into account. If they are both legally guys, it's an issue in some states. It has nothing to do with their transgender status and everything to do with what the government considers their orientation to be. While there might be some complications in cases of post-op transsexuals in those states, it wouldn't matter anymore if gay marriage was legalized because gender wouldn't matter anymore.

    So what is the point of having transgender in the same group as lesbians, gays and bisexuals?

    P.S. Why isn't there a better slang term for bisexuals... like bikes? Yeah, I rode that bike last week! Oh, the fun times that could be had.

  2. #2

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    It has historical roots dating all the way back to when the drag queens at Stonewall decided to fight the police in 1969.

    Beyond that, the issues are actually just variations on the same theme. Transgendered people still have issues with marriage equality. I know some conservative places (Texas comes to mind) gives transgendered people a really bad time about marriage in general, and I remember reading about a case a few years ago where the state literally wouldn't get someone get married because they wouldn't recognize the person's new sex and the person's original sex made them part of a same-sex couple (which was certainly not recognized). Aside from marriage, there are still issues around adoption, medical access, job access and security, discrimination in general, and the like.

    Further, a big part of the issues gay people have historically faced concerns gender expression and issues around gender roles, and one could make an argument that being transgendered is just an extension of those same issues that effeminate gay men and masculine lesbians have historically faced. Harassment, discrimination, and violence are real threats to effeminate gays, lesbians, and transgendered people alike. All of that is putting aside things like drag.

    Besides all that, though, there's a certain amount of "we're all in this together." Think of this: Why would we throw allies overboard? If we're not all equal, none of us are. Why should we only fight for equality for the suit-and-tie gays that want to blend in and play nice in the sandbox, because let's be honest-the whole question around transgendered people being part of the movement is nothing more than throwing the flamboyant, expressive, and non-conformists overboard. The distinction is nothing more than some insecure types trying to make themselves feel more "normal" by drawing distinctions between themselves and "THOSE gays" that won't just dress conservatively and go to work and raise kids and have a well-tended colonial in the suburbs.

    Frankly, the whole distinction thing is a load of bullshit. Yes, I will readily admit that transgendered people face some concerns that I don't, and vice versa, but you know what? We're more alike than different, and like I said before, if we're not all equal, then none of us are. There is not enough difference between me as a gay man and [my friend] as a transgendered male to female for me to throw him overboard.

  3. #3

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    It goes further. The full acronym is LGBTTIQQ2SA. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, intersex, queer, questioning, 2-spirited, and allies.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by KuroCat View Post
    It goes further. The full acronym is LGBTTIQQ2SA. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, intersex, queer, questioning, 2-spirited, and allies.
    Not to speak of asexuals, pansexuals, polyamorists, and ever expanding list of sexual identities.

    Zephy, the short of it: anything outside of cisgender heterosexuality falls under the umbrella of LGBTQ. Transpeople are outside of that paradigm, and therefore get grouped together with gays and lesbians.
    The longer story: historically, the conflation of gender variation with sexual variation stems from an outmoded concept called inversion theory, which posits that homosexuals have the inverse genders of their heterosexual analogues, i.e. gay men are effeminate men and lesbians are masculine women. Indeed, this is still the way a lot of people conceptualize homosexuals, however inaccurate it may be. Because of this, transpeople and homosexuals have often been confused for each other in heterosexual thought, since, e.g. a straight transwoman, from the perspective of a naive heterosexual, appears to be no more than an effeminate gay man. Hence, we end up with despicable theories like Blanchard's autogynephilia.



    Quote Originally Posted by Zephy View Post
    Even if you look at marriage, it seems to be a purely LGB issue. The issue is whether they are legally the same sex as the other person or not, and being transgendered isn't really taken into account. If they are both legally guys, it's an issue in some states. It has nothing to do with their transgender status and everything to do with what the government considers their orientation to be.
    There are actually several situations in which being trans becomes a marriage issue. Suppose I'm a biologically male, straight transwoman. I want to marry someone else who is biologically male, but I can't because my birth certificate says M and so does his. Being able to change your info is no walk in the park, especially if you can't afford SRS, and especially in the US. Not being able to marry someone of the same biological sex complicates things for transpeople.

    But more to the point: yes, there are important differences between sexual variations from the norm and gender variations from the norm. As such, it's important to point out that the LGBTQ community is not one big, happy family. Queer people don't always get along with LGB people, and transpeople often form their own groups, separate from LGB and Q groups, to address their unique needs. "LGBTQ" is more a rhetorical term that picks out non-straight/cis people than a meaningful designation of a unified community.




    P.S. Why isn't there a better slang term for bisexuals... like bikes? Yeah, I rode that bike last week! Oh, the fun times that could be had.
    Yes and yes

  5. #5

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    LGBT is simply an acronym of the four most common groups suffering from the status quo allowing only heterosexuality as allowable, and the only four groups that were highly visible at the time that the acronym developed. As the movement towards LGBT rights has gained momentum, other groups in the same situation have become visible enough to fall under the movement.

    It is completely true that transgenderism is, in some ways, a bit of an odd couple for the LGB part of it, since the underlying motivations and goals differ, and my understanding is that this tension has, in fact, played out internally within advocacy groups fighting for rights as they attempt to set priorities. That said, the breadth of other groups now a part of the larger LGBT movement has made transgenderism less of a relative outlier, and the basic premise that a rising tide raises all ships makes a lot of sense in the general fight for equality.



    Quote Originally Posted by KuroCat View Post
    It goes further. The full acronym is LGBTTIQQ2SA. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, intersex, queer, questioning, 2-spirited, and allies.
    There are a bunch of "full acronyms" out there, including ones that are longer and more inclusive that that.

    Personally, I feel like these longer acronyms have kind of missed the point of making an acronym - it's supposed to be readily usable shorthand.

  6. #6
    Peachy

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    I think the group stems from a time when anything but heterosexuality of the strictest kind was viewed as aburd and a sin. At that time, anyone who was into the same gender or physically one gender and claimed to be the other was viewed as a freak, and as such, all those people had a common goal: More awareness and respect for them. If you're such low numbers, and especially low numbers of people willing to stick their neck out and to night, it makes sense to team up with anyone you can find.

    Aside from the respect issue, different groups may have different goals nowadays, such as facilitating 'marriage' betwee people of the same gender on the one side and different treatment for transsexuals. Still doesn't change the low numbers especially on the T-side, so teaming up may still be useful.

    Peachy

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by xbabyx View Post
    Beyond that, the issues are actually just variations on the same theme. Transgendered people still have issues with marriage equality. I know some conservative places (Texas comes to mind) gives transgendered people a really bad time about marriage in general, and I remember reading about a case a few years ago where the state literally wouldn't get someone get married because they wouldn't recognize the person's new sex and the person's original sex made them part of a same-sex couple (which was certainly not recognized).



    Quote Originally Posted by slim View Post
    There are actually several situations in which being trans becomes a marriage issue. Suppose I'm a biologically male, straight transwoman. I want to marry someone else who is biologically male, but I can't because my birth certificate says M and so does his. Being able to change your info is no walk in the park, especially if you can't afford SRS, and especially in the US. Not being able to marry someone of the same biological sex complicates things for transpeople.
    As I said before, marriage is purely decided by orientation. The issue wasn't that they were transgendered, it's that they are considered "gay". Why they were considered that is because their sex change wasn't recognized, but in the end it's all about orientation, not identification. It's like having a group for "Asian and women's rights". Just because women can't vote and some women are Asian, it's not an "Asian rights" issue, it's a "women's rights" issue. However Asians could still agree that women should have right to vote and could say they are in support of it.

    This is actually 2 issues, depending on which side you fall on.

    LGB: It's a marriage issue. A man should be able to marry a man, and a woman should be able to marry a woman.
    Trans: It's an issue of the state not accepting the man transitioning to a woman. She should be able to marry the man because she should be recognized as a straight female. If she is only allowed to marry because gay marriage is allowed, then the issue still exists that she is not accepted after the transition, there's just a loophole to avoid that issue in this particular case.



    Quote Originally Posted by xbabyx View Post
    Besides all that, though, there's a certain amount of "we're all in this together." Think of this: Why would we throw allies overboard? If we're not all equal, none of us are. Why should we only fight for equality for the suit-and-tie gays that want to blend in and play nice in the sandbox, because let's be honest-the whole question around transgendered people being part of the movement is nothing more than throwing the flamboyant, expressive, and non-conformists overboard. The distinction is nothing more than some insecure types trying to make themselves feel more "normal" by drawing distinctions between themselves and "THOSE gays" that won't just dress conservatively and go to work and raise kids and have a well-tended colonial in the suburbs.

    Frankly, the whole distinction thing is a load of bullshit. Yes, I will readily admit that transgendered people face some concerns that I don't, and vice versa, but you know what? We're more alike than different, and like I said before, if we're not all equal, then none of us are. There is not enough difference between me as a gay man and [my friend] as a transgendered male to female for me to throw him overboard.
    By that logic, there's no point in distinguishing between anything. We're all people, so why not group all the various rights groups into one human rights group? Then why not mix those with the animal advocates, since we're all living things? The way I see it, there are enough fundamental differences between transgender issues and LGB issues that they should be recognized as separate groups.



    Quote Originally Posted by slim View Post
    But more to the point: yes, there are important differences between sexual variations from the norm and gender variations from the norm. As such, it's important to point out that the LGBTQ community is not one big, happy family. Queer people don't always get along with LGB people, and transpeople often form their own groups, separate from LGB and Q groups, to address their unique needs. "LGBTQ" is more a rhetorical term that picks out non-straight/cis people than a meaningful designation of a unified community.
    It's actually seeing these groups sometimes splitting that made me think of this topic. I think that they really do need their own voice, rather than share stage with the LGB community because they are similar. If there is a disagreement between the trans community and the gay community, the gay community is more likely the stance the group as a whole will take, since they make up a larger portion of the group. Sexual orientation and gender identification seem to be reaching point in society (at least in the younger generation) that they are understood to be different, if related, and that you can have an "abnormal" orientation, but a "normal" gender identification (i.e. be a manly man that likes sports and stuff, but also like other dudes) and vice-versa. Lumping them together, to me, makes it look like they are the same, and that having a different orientation is the same as having a dysphoric gender identity, making it harder to show that being gay doesn't instantly mean you're more girly, or being a lesbian doesn't instantly mean you're more manly.

  8. #8

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    Transgender people go through the same social abuse as gay people do, so I assume they wanted to group them all together as they understand how it feels.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by KuroCat View Post
    Transgender people go through the same social abuse as gay people do, so I assume they wanted to group them all together as they understand how it feels.
    You'd be surprised how transphobic some members of the LGB community are.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by pajamakitten View Post
    You'd be surprised how transphobic some members of the LGB community are.
    Aren't some LG also Biphobic?


    Sent from my iPhone

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