Saturday, June 28, 2008

Sometimes even the proggyiest of progressives need a swift kick in the ass

Last night I watched the Barbara Walters special on transkids with my Kid. These kids were so cute and so brave, I just wanted to bundle them up and keep them from everything mean in the world. And I'm not even *that* maternal. Kid, as usual, handled it exceptionally well. He hated that people were mean to them, and he was all "If I had a trans kid, I'd let them pick who they wanted to be".

Contrast to a few friends from the other night who think "it" is the appropriate pronoun to use for people who just won't pick a gender and stick with it. Ughhhh. When I pointed out that it is just good manners to use the pronoun that the person uses for themselves, they seemed to get it a little. But with exceptions.

"Except for V_____, it doesn't know what it is."

"It" is not a word used for human beings. "It" is the ultimate in othering. "It" is how we describe lifeless things like toasters and sweaters. And when you turn a human into an "It", it's no wonder that violence and murder of trans people is high. Can you murder a toaster? I hate "It".

Is it so hard to ask? If someone is skewing the gender binary, and you are not sure how to address them, I am pretty sure that they would prefer to be asked rather than to be treated like a household object.

Words mean things. And how could anyone ever want to hurt this sweet, sad girl is beyond me.

No comments: