Exclusion isn’t a Negative Thing.

With the release of the names and participants of the people who signed the anti-female and anti-lesbian petition to mandate inclusion of M2T individuals into Michfest, it’s spawned a lot of conversations about the nature of exclusion. The GLBTQ community has such a knee-jerk reaction to the concept of exclusion, which is unfortunate because it misses the point. Where they see discrimination others see liberation and a moment to breathe.Thankfully many activist still understand the importance of having  spaces to one’s self. Unfortunately their voices are most often drowned out by the hive mind.  But however have we all moved forward if not by being able to establish and maintain ourselves? This is something that must be retained, it’s 2014 and no one is out of the woods yet. Racism, Misogyny, homophobia, it’s all still alive and well, and everyone in these groups have, or are now expected to have their oppressor looking over their shoulder at every movement. Why? What good does this presence have on the oppressed other than to stifle the potential of ideas because of fear? 

  While I’m not female, nor am I a person of color, I am gay, and there is something special about the energy of just gay men meeting. It’s a time and space for us to exchange, share etc. All with a lack of judgement in any context of our homosexuality, which always has to come up among straight men in some fashion,  especially through unwelcomed humor.  We can be free of that, as we can be free of hearing disgusting hetero male fantasies and objectification of women and their bodies. Straight men often go on in detail creating visuals that I trust most gay men do not want. And while I don’t give any type of man a pass on their potential to perpetuate male violence , it often at least feels like that gay men are missing an aggressive macho factor that many men have, and that I personally find intimidating. There is something therapeutic about being among one’s own. There is relief. It’s heartbreaking to see so many of us want to take this away from our lesbian sisters.

GLF

 I’m very interested in how one can equate this type of exclusion to the type of exclusion that the oppressors classes have perpetuated since forever. I think the knee-jerk response to “women only”, “gay only”, or “black only” spaces is rooted in liberal logic. Like most progressives  “don’t see color, just see people”. I feel the current GLBTQ movement does not have a political or class analysis, which is something we could benefit from if we weren’t so busy clawing our way to a seat in the patriarchy. We should be working to overthrow it, now work with in it. Right now we are working as it’s left hand. 

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5 thoughts on “Exclusion isn’t a Negative Thing.

  1. What a circle jerk. You are literally the only gay man in existence that gives a shit about transgender people going to a music event (that is open to the public and can’t legally discriminate the way they do, anyway).

    Christ – get over yourself.

    • No, there are other gay men who actually respect lesbians and women. And it’s not about this one event- it’s about the spaces of oppressed groups as a whole, Michfest is a part of that- and the part that’s under attack.

  2. “What a circle jerk. You are literally the only gay man in existence that gives a shit about transgender people going to a music event (that is open to the public and can’t legally discriminate the way they do, anyway).”

    Michigan Women’s Music Festival is held on privately owned land. It’s not like it’s some kind of public park. On its website, Equality Michigan all but admits that it can’t legally force the owner of the land to admit anyone she doesn’t want to admit. So, why do they continue to harass the owner of the land? What is so horrible about women having one freaking week a year to themselves on their own land? No one is telling gay men that they must invite any and all transmen to their private property. They aren’t telling any other group of people that they must open up their private property to any and all men who “identify as women”. They are targeting women, specifically lesbians. People who know what is actually going on know that this is a purely politically driven vendetta.

    “Isn’t the festival on private land and privately owned? Don’t they have the legal right to discriminate?

    •The festival legally has the right to discriminate as a privately owned event.”

    https://www.equalitymi.org/michfest

    To read how Equality Michigan is being hypocritical and to read death threats against “TERFs” click on the following link.

    http://hipocriteequalitymichigan.wordpress.com/

  3. If Equality Michigan expects full transgender inclusion in both public and private events (Mich Fest is held on privately owned land), then transmen must be included in all private events and celebrations held by gay men. How can Ms. Dievendorf incessantly berate lesbians for not including transwomen if gay men don’t have to invite FTMs to all their private parties? So, move over gay men and get used to FTMs in all every single event held by gay men.

    Since Ms. Dievendorf has no clear definition of “transgender woman” in her Petition, the following Petition has no clear and precise definition of FTM or transman either. In the following Petition, FTM and transmen is based on how an individual self-identifies at any particular point in time. That is, any person who identifies as FTM or transman is a FTM or transman. This includes both pre-op and post-op females who identify as men. Ms. Dievendorf makes no distinction between pre-op (still has his penis) and post-op transwomen, so the Petition below makes no distinction between pre-op and post-op FTMs. If lesbians have to get used to penis on a pre-op transwoman in their restrooms, showers, private spaces, and at Mich Fest, surely gay men will learn to accept female bodied persons (breasts and female genitalia) in their showers, locker rooms, saunas, bath houses, and any and all private spaces. I have confidence that gay men will eventually learn to appreciate this enlightened policy of complete and total transgender inclusion.

    Sign our petition asking:

    – For an end to the exclusionary and transphobic “man-born-male” intention, whether stated or implied, at any and all events, celebrations, and meetings held on any and all private property owned by gay men, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men. Gay men must publicly denounce their exclusionary policy verbally and in writing, and commit to not participating in future private events until FTMs are included, and the policy is modernized.

    – The owner or owners of any and all private property owned by one or more gay males, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men must meet with leaders of the transgender community and LGBT leaders and enter the space with an open mind to the notion that all persons identifying as FTM (female to male transsexuals), are men too, and have shared in their experiences.

    – Vendors, attendees, and event organizers to publicly declare support of an end to the antiquated and transphobic private parties, celebrations, social events, and meetings held on any and all property owned by gay men, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men.

    – Artists and attendees to act in harmony with their equal rights values and NOT attend the private party, celebration, meeting, or event held on private property owned by gay men, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men until the transphobic discrimination against FTMs (female to male transsexual) ends, and instead support other men’s events which are creating a safe space for transmen so they can join as well.

    – All artists (singers, musicians, comedians, etc.) committed to performing at any celebration, meeting, or event held on any and all private property owned by one or more gay males, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men in which transmen are not cordially invited must publicly denounce the discriminatory policy on stage and commit to not participating in future events until the transphobic policy is modernized.

    – Entertainment business owners bring up this policy with artists performing at all celebrations and events held on private property owned by gay men, or any private residence rented or leased by one or more gay men, and join Equality Michigan in considering participation by any artist in future years to be an act of discrimination against FTMs and transmen.

  4. On the subject of “exclusion”, why are we supposed to ignore our own reality and common sense for the sake of political correctness. Gay men are sexually and emotionally attracted to males, and lesbians are sexually and emotionally attracted to females. No one really believes that transwomen (men who “identify as women”) are exactly like females, and deep down in their hearts most gay men don’t see FTMs as “men”. I respect the fact that they identify as transgender and deserve basic human rights, but there is still a difference between males and females. We know this, and no amount of bullying from transgender activists can force people to believe something that they know isn’t true.

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