Earlier post from Michfest list. This is simply too powerful writing on my part to
let it languish just on Michfest. It was written earlier than some of my previous posts here on DykesforDykes.
Chaz Bono: "I always felt like the male from the time I was a child," he said. "There wasn't much feminine about me."
"Boy, can I relate!"-michfest list member
Well, there's not a whole lot feminine about me either...but feminine DOES NOT equal female...it's why we have a wbw policy. Womyn, Dykes, Females, come in all flavors, from the hardcore Butch, to androgynous to high Femme, to Wildwomon, to Amazon, to Sorceress, Witch, Warrior, Sage, and many others inbetween, reflected by the Goddess of 10,000 Names, appearances, sizes, ethnicities, races, temperaments. Maybe we need a modern Goddess who rides in a rocket ship, though I've definitely transported into outer space with a few of them through visualization and ritual......the Goddess is infinite..and so are we..AS FEMALES. We come in many different Female forms. This is basic feminism...not just for our rights, but for right to be PROUD as a Dyke, as a Womon as a Female, in whatever form we come in, fat, thin, muscular, Black, White, Brown, Red, Yellow, Purple or Green....all ages, all types of temperaments, fiery, watery, fairy, floaty, airy, earthy, whether as Maiden, Mother, Amazon or Crone types, so many differing ways we CAN be as Female, and take back our Female Powers...Female, NOT feminine. Just like there are men who don't fit into masculine roles...our fairy queen brothers....why should they be forced or pressured into transitioning to 'female', simply because they're effeminate and don't 'fit in' to hetero norms, in the same way butchy/tomboy girls don't 'fit in' to hetero norms. I never have, ever since at age 7 I rejected dolls, age 10 rejected dresses, age 12 rejected having a baby or ever marrying a man, ect. How did I know these things at such a young age?
I CONSTANTLY argued with my parents that I was 'not a girl'. And they constantly told me I was 'not a boy'. And then we'd get in the arguement, 'well if you're not a girl or not a boy, what ARE you?" And came up with the only answer I could, being a hardcore Trekkie...."I'm an alien from outer space.". No more arguement then.
Years later, I look through my school books, and realized I scratched out all the female pronouns or changed them to male ones. I did not identify with the female roles, housewives, cooking, cleaning, having babies. I wanted to do the fun stuff(and did), ride my bike, climb trees, play baseball, fight, explore, and identified with all the male roles, with the exception of Wonder Woman. Even though she was a bit feminine for me...she had magical powers, AND SHE LIVED ON AN ISLAND OF WOMON ONLY..AN AMAZON ISLAND. Anytime I EVER heard about Amazons I knew that was me...the Amazon Goddess Artemis, and girls/womyn living in the woods with Her, that was what I wanted. I wanted to be in a community of womyn TO BE FREE...COMPLETELY FREE, WILD AND UNFEMINIZED. I wasn't 'tough enough' to make it as a boy, in fact, I really didn't like the boys, and certainly not sexually, I found them repulsive. But I identified with the fun things they did, rather than the drudgery of roles and feminine confining behaviors and games little girls were expected to like, and especially dolls! Hated them, and everything they represented. Hated everything that was feminine....or feminized. But when I saw pictures of womyn that weren't so feminine, more sporty, more athletic, more POWERFUL....and actualized...I identified WITH them. So this is the crisis.
Once all the good Butches, or potential Butches are taken out of the community and ASSumed to be male as in: "you just want to be a man", like so many of us have been told, well, WHERE WILL THE ROLE MODELS BE, for those who DON'T want to transition to love a womon, yet are somewhat masculine, or who too, reject femininity?
Everywhere I go on the internet, 20, or 30 something boyish dyke types are talking about wearing binders to flatten their breasts, ASSuming male pronouns, and expecting that every Butch needs to be referred to as he/hym, hy, ect....the trans movement offers us Butch Dykes NOTHING.....except the erasure of our Femaleness...which goes WAY BEYOND femininity....and we KNOW that, because we have been on womyn's land, and experienced the POWER of womyn, all kinds of womyn, of every stripe, shape, size, ethnicity, yin or yangness....temperament, Butchness, or femmeness, and everything inbetween. Many of these can't even imagine being on womyn's land cuz it's 'discriminatory', their gay male friends can't come, their trans friends can't come(depending on what side of trans they're on), or whatever. There's no value to it, for them...because they DON'T UNDERSTAND the value of it!
I had one young friend of mine go to Michfest, who sits in this stew, and this current 'binary/nonbinary gender issues' political correctness. She was changed going to Michfest, but unless she repeats it many times, she'll fall right back into that trap.
Hell if Chaz wants to transition, whatever...but every Dyke who transitions, every womon, and every masculine/Butch womon who transitions, who literally allows the male energy to live inside her body, through those hormones, and the physical and psychological effects of those surgeries, and the community's celebrating her transition with her..to male..or some version of male....makes it harder for every one of us Female Identified Butches who DON'T constantly want male pronouns used for us, who WANT our Butchness, our Dykeness AND our Femaleness honored and recognized, and seen, for who and what we are...not what others think we should be...
How do I know this? Well, my partner was pressured almost immediately once she got online to transition, by all the other Butch on Butch online, who were playing with their 'cocks' and dildos, and imitating the male...each announcing "I'm taking T', one at a time, or considering the surgeries...it starts innocently enough..the name change to something more male, like Anna to Andy, or Eva to Evan, or something like that....then by starting to insist on male pronouns, then a certain style of dress, what I call the Genderqueer/FTM style(very, very distinct in San Francisco), then the encouragement of wearing binders...then maybe scoring some 'T' from friends to create a mustache, or even wearing fake facial hair before that....and WANTING, oh so WANTING the privileges men have. WE ALL want those privileges......then, getting a script for testosterone...and maybe they'll just stay there for awhile...but eventually, many will want the breast surgery....cuz now they really hate what evidence of femaleness they have left on their bodies, because of all the masculinity and maleness of their genderqueer/FTM friends....and then eventually the breast surgery when they have the money......and most just stop there...somewhere's inbetween...neither really male, nor female....they LOOK LIKE young dykes, many of them, with baby faces, some sporting a little facial hair, some not...the scratchy hormone induced voice...it's very, very 'in'...and their femmes love it..and their genderqueer and FTM and some of their Butch bros.....
But...each one that does it...puts that much more pressure on those of us left behind....those of us Butches who just want to remain female...and then the bombardment of questions of those Butches who are a bit harder looking, who have the more genderqueer forms of dress, or hairstyles, or very short hair, or more hardcore masculine looking..."When are YOU going to transition" "When, when, when?" Yes, my partner had to endure those questions before we met.....until she met someone who LOVED her for her Butch nature, AND her Female side as well....because there is a part of her that is very soft, vulnerable and female...and THAT'S what I want, and NEED in a partner. I LOVE the tough Butch look. I LOVE being Butch..but I gotta know that inside, they're soft and have a vulnerable side...that they are fully Female....and with so many of these young ones, they're made to stuff that down....and only claim the hardness and reject the vulnerability. Truthfully, how many are incest or rape survivors? How many hate their femaleness because they were victimized by it? How many see being female necessarily equals feminine, and that it is a weakness...ok for their femmes, but NOT for them? Yes, sexism. No feminism, not even the most basic kind. THAT YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU WANT IN YOUR POWERFUL FEMALE BODY...ANYTHING YOU PLEASE.....BE ANYTHING YOU WANT...AS LONG AS WE CONTINUE TO WORK TO OUR FULL LIBERATION AS FEMALES!!! AND NEVER, EVER LET GO OF THE STRUGGLE!!!
Well, there's a new movement coming along, and we call it "Butch Feminism". You can be Butch, proud to be a womon, and Feminist...and I will write out my definition of it..others can add to it...you need not change, be somethind different or feel that female=weak. That's patriarchal claptrap, the machine and noise fed to us by media and the power structures and conservative religions. And we are rising once again...claiming the flame...and we are Female Identified Butches that only or primarily want the female pronoun used for us...and ESPECIALLY in women's space and/or women's land! That should be a given. If others dont like it, then let them stay in their queer identified spaces, and leave us womyn and Dykes alone who DO want wbw spaces and places to SEE each other, and CONNECT with each other AS FEMALES!