Tuesday, October 21, 2008


At Questioning Transphobia there's a post about the need for a vocabulary for the experience of transpeople. They specifically talk about the term "passing", and how the term doesn't cover their experiences. I'm not commenting there because all I have to say is focused on me, and I don't think I as a cisgender woman should fill that space with my own thoughts about my own situation.

Passing seems to me to what happens if I'm not overtly challenging the onlooker's stereotyped interpretation of my looks/behaviour. I pass as straight, unless I explicitly mention a girlfriend. I pass as non-disabled unless I'm using a cane. I have to change something about myself in order not to pass.

Of course, sometimes I do make an effort to pass - I don't use the cane even though I really need it, because I don't want to be seen as "the woman with the health problem".

I'm not sure if it would be a good idea or not to have a common name for "being passed". Miscasting, or mistyping might cover misgendering/ungendering as well as other types of being perceived as other/more than we are.

What bugs me about the situation is that I always have to choose whether to out myself or not. I wish I didn't have to do that.

Friday, October 10, 2008


Before Sweden removed the legal obstacles for same-sex couples to adopt children, there was a lot of debate. One reason against same-sex adoption was that the children would be bullied at school for having gay parents. That one made me particularly furious, partly because I've been the subject of severe bullying at school. It seems to me that the thing to do about bullying is to make damn sure kids don't bully other kids, not to use it as a cover for denying other people the choice to be parents. It all boils down to "if we let you have kids we'll teach our kids to be nasty to them".

And now, in the Livejournal anti-porn community, someone uses that exact argument - only this time it's prostitutes/porn actresses/sex workers who shouldn't be allowed to have kids.

It's no less appalling in this context.

(Hat-tip to Renegade Evolution.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Actually reading would be a start...

I just listened to a radio show about faith in US politics. The reporter asked Jim Backlin from the Christian Coalition what the most important issues are for them.
Abortion was number one, same-sex marriage number two.

Then I thought about my father, who's a minister in one of the larger protestant churches in Sweden (not the old state church, one of the "free churches", but reasonably mainstream). When we talked about the latter issue, he said that to him anyone who spent time fighting against same-sex marriage should read the bible again, specifically the gospels - in which Jesus spoke not once about homosexuality, but quite a bit about helping the poor, social justice and things like that.

It'd be nice if more Christians thought like that.