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Yes Please, May We Have Another? My Take On The Guardian Kerfluffle


A brouhaha recent broke out across the pond in jolly old England when an article in The Guardian went and got nasty. This was surprising because in all my interactions with the Brittish, I’ve never encountered outright nastiness. A good friend who emigrated from there a few years back was kind enough to post a nifty guide that explained what it actually meant when Brits toss out a seemingly innocuous phrase. It did tell me how often she had recently told me to fuck off and die, and I was delighted with the skill she employed to frequently insult me while leaving me beaming with gracious affect.

What is now being commonly referred to as the great Moore/Burchill Kerfuffle escaped me completely until my sister Becky took the time to patiently explain the whole thing. She’s over in Scotland now, so there is a good chance she was peppering the explanation with barbs calling me an ignorant twat, but it’s true, I missed the ball this story. To boil it all down for you, because chances are you already know, Julie Burchill, a RadFem type lesbian, put up a piece employing the typical RadFem Anti-Trans taskforce language. Mature stuff like demeaning name calling, attempting to reduce the trans condition to ridiculous analogies, and the usual heap of logical fallacies. Personally, I’m so glad she did this.

Suzanne Moore chose to follow this up with a bit about free speech using the same logic as an uncommonly literate KKK Grand Whizzer is likely to spew out. Again, I’m loving it. This may seem strange, but think about it for a moment. Instead of the usual tactic of riling each other up with trans hate speech over at their RadFem hub, they chose to take the national stage with it. They actually managed to delude themselves that the rancorous bile they were spewing has some kind of common appeal to the masses. I imagine Burchill typing away with a big old shit eating grin and imagining the Guardian readership nodding their heads in agreement thinking, “Grrrr! I hate those fucking trannies!” A beautifully timed miscalculation.

As expected, it got a nice big response. A big negative response, and not just from the tiny smattering of trans folks spread over the globe either. Women, men, feminists (the real kind who focus their energy on advancing and empowering women instead of giving a niche minority a hard time), straight and gay alike. It was immediately blamed of course on the juggernaut raw power of the Pink Press. Um, yeah… I explained recently how the US presidential election was about national character instead of the economy. When one of the most conservative democracies votes to maybe stop treating subsets of the citizenry like shit, it’s a good barometer that world attitudes are changing and that employing contrived caricatures is no longer the cool way to try to bully anyone.

So, to Burchill, Moore, and the rest of the anti-trans element in RadFem, please, keep it coming! I’m very happy to toss you all the rope you need, or provide a nice shiny shovel to dig and dig until the tops of your heads are no longer even bumps in the scenery. I look forward to many colorful and imaginative insults, huge gaps in logic, and of course the hallmark of great writing, tons and tons of exclamation points with a few words in all caps to drive the point home. You just have to love it when problems take care of themselves.


About michellelianna

I'm a transgender woman now in the maintenance stages of transition having all the electrolysis and surgery one can reasonably be expected to undertake. While busy exploring my new world, I took to blogging about it with dubiously popular results. I don't have quite as much to say as I used to, but I'm not quite done yet either.

4 responses »

  1. Brilliant article. I couldn’t agree more!

  2. Okay, maybe I have this backward. As I understand, it was Moore who wrote the first article with the offending “Brazilian Transsexual” reference which set this whole thing off. That was followed by Burchill trying to defend her friend which just fanned the flames higher.
    Of course, I could be wrong.

    • Actually you have it exactly right. I began my post in the middle of the kerfluffle – it started with Moore’s comment, the backlash of which prompted Burchill to spew forth her nastiness. I took a chance doing that since I really wanted to talk about how this hate speech can actually help us in the long run instead of going blow by blow. Thanks for commenting Kira!


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