So, Dan Savage has been glitterbombed again. Presumably this third go round means that the transgender activists have successfully eradicated transphobia around the world by glitterbombing people who actually agree with them.
For those that aren’t familiar with the now extensive series of unfortunate events between Dan Savage and the trans community, I wrote about this the last time that he was glitterbombed, and I stand by what I said in that post. Dan did say some things that were very offensive in 2003, but he has since apologized multiple times. Dan has conversed with the trans community extensively, and he has had Kate Bornstein write guest columns for him.
The “T” in GLBT was simply not as visible eight years ago. A lot of people that want to be allies simply don’t know how to do it. I meet people all the time who are completely supportive of transgender people’s rights, but they say offensive things because I am the first transgender person that they have ever met. And ya know what I do? GO BUY SOME GLITTER AT WALGREENS AND THROW IT IN THEIR FUCKING FACE.
No, I don’t do that, because then they would just be cleaning glitter out of their eyes instead of learning how to be sensitive to transgender issues. Keep in mind that I live in San Francisco, California, one of the gayest places in the country.
Allow me a personal anecdote to illustrate the climate that certain transgender activists are creating: I have a friend who worked at an LGBT rights organization, and she went to a class that was intended to educate people on how to be sensitive to transgender issues. When she asked questions, what did the presenters do? They attacked her as being ignorant. Her education consisted of getting drinks with me later and asking me questions because she knew I was a friend and I wouldn’t get mad at her.
Two writers at the Bilerico Project have written how unproductive the continued attacks on Savage have been. John Becker gets at my central point about visibility and education:
As Bil points out, trans people are not alone in their journey. All of us cisgendered individuals – even those of us in the LGBT movement – are on a journey too, into an ever-greater understanding of the perspectives and experiences that our trans siblings bring to the table and the unique issues, circumstances, and difficulties they face.
Some writers at Bilerico have even coined the term “trans mafia”, which is an organization that actually sounds pretty cool, but I just don’t want them to attack Dan Savage. Because you know what? While activists are throwing glitter on other GLBT people’s faces, Newt Gingrich might become your President.