pansexualpride: Conan O’Brien apologized today after a monologue joke on his show last Tuesday upset members and allies of the LGBT community. O’Brien referred to Chicago as “the city of the big shoulders” and followed up by saying that it “was better than the name they almost went with… ‘the unconvincing tr*nny.’” After members of the transgender community began to speak out and after GLAAD reached out, the show agreed to pull the clip and O’Brien issued an apology.
I used to LOVE @ConanOBrien. Now, after he used the “T” word, not so much. Come on Conan, be a man and apologize to all the #GirlsLikeUs
Since it aired, a number of trans community leaders weighed in on the incident, including LGBT Weekly columnist Autumn Sandeen who told GLAAD: “I’m so tired of my peers and I being so frequently portrayed as monsters. I wish that media would recognize that transphobia is monstrous, and if they know the one salient fact about us that we’re trans they don’t know everything about our three-dimensional lives.”
GLAAD received the following statement of apology from O’Brien:
My staff and I had no idea that term was offensive to the transgender community. We apologize and you will not be hearing that term again.
The show has also confirmed they will remove the clip of the joke from the website.
oh right. can someone offer me an example of how the T-word would EVER be used in a context that isn’t offensive? because i sure as hell can’t imagine one.
transqueery: I know, I’m a transwoman, and that implies if I haven’t had surgery, I have a penis, no? Well, no. For many reasons, one being the fact that I don’t! Stop assuming what kind of body I have, stop assuming you know what it means to have a body like mine, and stop attaching all of your fucked up meaning to it. I will spend some time talking about my genitals and genitals in general, because it seems to be the focus of so much attention, and it seems to mean so much to everyone else. It trumps everything else. If no one knew I was trans, I’d never have to deal with this. I’d be treated like every other woman in the US. But alas, I do not wish to hide and I am proud to be a transwoman, so at times people find out that I am trans, although being stealth is definitely tempting.
It’s a common misconception that all trans people hate their genitals, and that they want to go at them with a knife to change them into something different. Well guess again. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Some of us are ashamed of our genitals because of all the meaning people attach to them, and because of the exclusion and hatred we experience because of them, and many of us, including me, would like to be found beautiful, womanly, lovable, attractive, and sexy, and not just the parts you can see, but all of us, every last inch.
Another common misconception is that people only have either a penis, or a clitoris and a vagina. Also not true. Now for those of you who didn’t know, I was born with an intersex condition. This has it’s own implications. When people hear this they expect me to have some strange ambiguous body, one with “both” or some crazy mutation of in betweenness. Well, this isn’t always true either. Not every intersex person has ambiguous genitalia, in fact many do not. Some of us never had a very visible condition to begin with, and some of us (me) have had normalizing surgery, that made our genitals look more or less “normal.”
This is a disappointment to some, and cause for some to say we’re not intersex, or not intersex enough to be fetishized by them I should say.
Well, anyway, now that you know not everyone is born with EITHER a penis or a clitoris and vagina, and now that you know I do not in fact have a penis, what more do you want to know? Would you like to know exactly what my genitals look like? Would you like me to post pictures? Would you like to ask my partner and I about how we have sex? You’ll probably go google some pictures now, but to be honest, I did the same thing several years ago when I found out about my intersex condition. It’s what we do. We think of these things as “othered” as foreign, and strange. I couldn’t believe it when I first found out. It made my entire world change. I saw things a different way from that day on. I stopped trying to be attracted to one type of person, with one type of body, and I stopped trying to live up to this ridiculous binary we all think is real. But unfortunately, I am not perfect, and the pressure to live within a binary facade and be “normal” is at times more than I realize, and I find even myself doing things the way I was taught they were supposed to be done.
Well, if you’re not confused enough already here’s something else for you to contemplate. What if you saw my genitals, and they were something you saw as typically male, or typically female either because that’s what I was born with, or because that’s what surgery had done to me. Now you label my genitals right? You say, “Oh you have a penis” But then I say, “No, actually I don’t call it that, I call that my clitoris, and this here, that’s my pussy.” Well, now you’re probably thinking, “Just because you call it that, doesn’t make it true, I know what I see.”
But how do you define a penis, and a clitoris? Where does one stop and the other begin. How big does a clit need to be before it’s called a dick? How little does a penis need to be before it’s called a clit?
But, the absence of a vagina, well that’s pretty clear cut though right? Well, some of us are again forced to have unnecessary and harmful surgery as children by parents and doctors to close openings that might be considered shallow vaginas, or that may have vaginal tissue, and even though the tissue is fully functional genital tissue, and is sensitive and a potential source of fun for us and maybe someone else, it doesn’t “really serve any purpose,” does it? The only reason we have genitals is for reproduction anyway, no? So we have our genitals cut, and sculpted, we have things amputated, and other things sewn shut. We have the most creative surgeons come up with volumes of books full of new techniques to correct this type of genital abnormality, or that type of genital anomaly.
If my genitals mean to you that I am not what I say I am, intersex, woman, beautiful, lovable, attractive, sexy, you can turn around, and walk the other way. If you decide to take it upon yourself to say something to me, or to anyone else about how much you think my genitals define me, you should really rethink your world view.
Is that enough information for you, would you like to know exactly what I have? I have a lit and a pussy. I do not intend to have any more surgery on them. I’ve already had too much. I love my genitals, and although you want to shame me for them, I will not be ashamed of them.
I carry my scars proudly. They remind me of the pain and assault I have survived. They remind me of how strong a person I am. They remind me, regardless of what my body looks like, I define what that means and I define my existence. Doctors have taken it upon themselves to be invasive, and one practically fondled me out of curiosity over what he saw between my legs. don’t try and refute that and tell me some close minded, binary bullshit about how my biology matters and makes me who I am. The binary doesn’t exist. Cis people made is up to oppress others and to erase intersex people.
My scars are part of me, and so are my beautiful, sexy, hot, genitals. You should be so lucky to even hear about them, much less see them or touch them. I love them. They will never be cut again. Never again.
shortformblog: A very rare occurrence, especially in the U.S.: An Oregon man in his 50s contracted the “Black Death” plague while trying to remove a dead rodent from a stray cat’s mouth. While somewhere between 1,000 and 3,000 instances of the plague— yes, the same plague that devastated a third of Europe’s population in the 14th century — only ten to fifteen instances happen in the U.S. each year (this being the fifth incidence of plague in Oregon since 1995). Instances of plague are so rare that vaccination against it is no longer sold in the States, although it does exist. The man was still in critical condition in a hospital in Bend, Oregon as of Friday, and is being treated with antibiotics. (EDIT: As ajoyner notes below, New Mexico has had a number of cases, strangely, in affluent areas.)source