August 29, 2015
So now that I understand where this criticism of this post is coming from, I do feel like I need to clarify what I meant in that post, since the conclusion my interlocutor drew from the post is reasonable (although not correct). I can definitely understand why that person thought that what I was saying is that (white) trans woman shouldn’t bother with radfems any more bc, in recent times, they focus (at least publicly) more on sex workers than trans women.
In a lot of ways, I still find it fascinating that fakecisgirl’s post on MRAs being the biggest enemy of trans women remains so controversial. I mean, it shouldn’t be a wild thing to assert, that men are a bigger threat to women than other women. Men have more access to power and resources. They are, in fact, our oppressors. Women can and do oppress other women, as in the case of cis radfems oppressing trans women. Yet, to me, it seems uncontroversial to point out that men pose a bigger threat. This statement doesn’t imply that cis radfems aren’t a threat and, thus, we don’t need to resist or oppose them. All it asserts is that men are our greatest threat. That’s it.
(I hope if I’ve mischaracterized fcg’s post, she’ll let me know.)
This explication is necessary because it provides the context for my comment. My comment is posted to agree with fcg, re: men(‘s rights activists) are the greatest threat to trans women. As evidence for my agreement, I make note of the fact that contemporary radfem discourse targets sex workers far more than it does trans women (although, we aren’t entirely off the radfem radar). I conclude with a statement about how white trans women always frame their opposition to radfems in terms of transmisogyny, rather than recognizing that sex workers are the number one target of radfems these days. I make this comment as a way of marking the ways that white trans women centre themselves in their opposition to radfems and don’t actually care or do much about the ways that radfems violently oppress sex workers. It is a comment about how sex workers are erased from much of white trans women’s discussions about why radfems are awful and ought to be opposed.
What I’m saying here, is that, as one example, when white trans women attempted to shut down the radfem event at the Vancouver Public Library, they primarily cited transmisogyny/transphobia as the reasons why the group is hateful. When, in reality, the focus of that event was on sex work. Thus, the white trans women who attempted to shut down the event erased the impact on sex workers and centered themselves. What ought to have happened, is that the white trans women ought to have opposed the event because it targeted sex workers and sex worker’s rights/protection/safety is an important (or ought to be treated as important) priority for the trans community (particularly for trans women of colour).
So the intended take away from the post is that radfems should be resisted and opposed based on their current focus on sex workers, rather than invoking their past focus on trans women. Not that trans women should stop resisting radfems because they focus on sex workers.
However, since I do understand that ‘intent isn’t magic’, I will apologize for the harm caused by the lack of clarity.
(And, should my interlocutor ever read this post, I respond to criticism offered in good faith, which yours wasn’t.)