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Thread: Horrible transphobic piece in the Observer

  1. #1
    A bit of a wallflower absitinvidia's Avatar
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    Horrible transphobic piece in the Observer

    I'm posting this link to avoid directing traffic to the Guardian site.

    I am really disgusted by this article, which includes gems like "I nevertheless felt indignant that a woman of such style and substance should be driven from her chosen mode of time-wasting by a bunch of dicks in chicks' clothing."

    ETA: I was mistaken: this appeared in the Observer, not the Guardian. Thank you, mirandashell, for correcting me!
    Last edited by absitinvidia; 01-19-2013 at 07:20 AM. Reason: Corrected name of newspaper

  2. #2
    Tonight on Mythbusters BenPanced's Avatar
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    She wrote that, among other things, women were angry about "not having the ideal body shape – that of a Brazilian transsexual". Rather than join her in decrying the idea that every broad should aim to look like an oven-ready porn star, the very vociferous transsexual lobby and their grim groupies picked on the messenger instead.
    Then why not use the phrase "oven-ready porn star"? Afraid they might offended?
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  3. #3
    Inappropriately math-oriented. slhuang's Avatar
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    That was appalling. I feel sick.

    She clearly went out of her way to be as horrible as possible. I have no words. I can't even fathom that level of hatred and bigotry.

    Why on earth did someone publish this?

  4. #4
    practical experience, FTW firedrake's Avatar
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    I'd expect nothing less than that from that vile waste of oxygen. She's always been bitter and nasty in just about everything she's ever written. She's a relic from the bad old days of Fleet Street and really should've been buried under a paving slab there when all the newspapers picked up and moved elsewhere.

    I can't wait to see what happens when or if the Grauniad enables comments.

  5. #5
    the Juggernaut of Imperfection crunchyblanket's Avatar
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    Another one bites the dust. How depressing when even those we should be able to count as allies come out with this kind of vile garbage.

  6. #6
    Inappropriately math-oriented. slhuang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crunchyblanket View Post
    Another one bites the dust. How depressing when even those we should be able to count as allies come out with this kind of vile garbage.
    Do you mean The Guardian, or the author? (I ask because I'm not familiar with the author at all outside of this, and don't have a solid picture of what The Guardian usually stands for either -- are they usually a socially conscious publication?)

  7. #7
    the Juggernaut of Imperfection crunchyblanket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slhuang View Post
    Do you mean The Guardian, or the author? (I ask because I'm not familiar with the author at all outside of this, and don't have a solid picture of what The Guardian usually stands for either -- are they usually a socially conscious publication?)
    It's a little bit of everything. Suzanne Moore and Julie Burchill claim to be feminists, although as a feminist I shudder at the thought of being represented by either of them - even moreso after this hideously transphobic article. And The Guardian is supposed to represent the left-leaning side of the British public - I say 'supposed' to because articles like this really make me wonder.

  8. #8
    Geekzilla BigWords's Avatar
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    Julie Burchill takes a certain amount of pleasure in getting people wound up - she always has. This is, however, surprising to see... even from her.
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  9. #9
    Joker Groupie Celia Cyanide's Avatar
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    Ugh! To describe the impossible image that women are meant to conform to as, "that of a Brazillian transexual" IS derogatory.
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  10. #10
    practical experience, FTW areteus's Avatar
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    This article does have comments... a number of people who have posted the article on my facebook feed have commented on the comments in this article (if that makes sense...). Not read them myself but they are there and you can go and add to them.

    It is the form of journalism where the aim is to incite a response. Usually it is the Daily Mail that do it (with their frequent 'Homosexual feminist leftwingers cause cancer' articles) and it is surprising the Gaurdian has sunk so low in their editorial team to allow this as they are usually the mouth of sanity in such things.

    It is also the form of feminism that claims that men cannot be feminists because they are men... so yeah, well done, alienate a significant portion of the population who support you.

    If anything, it should be the goal of feminists, transexuals, homosexuals and similar to a) work with each other because they are all in the same boat (and most do) and b) gain the support of as many people who are not in any of them not alienate them by diatribe like this.

  11. #11
    Listening to the Voices In My Head Satori1977's Avatar
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    Women like that give feminists a bad name. That is why so many people think of femi-nazi's. Feminists should be about equal rights for ALL. They should try to uplift all women, no matter what they look like, their past, what they are going through. Sh*t like this makes me sick. They only care about "women" that are exactly like them.

    I don't want to be anything like them.
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  12. #12
    the Juggernaut of Imperfection crunchyblanket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satori1977 View Post
    Women like that give feminists a bad name. That is why so many people think of femi-nazi's. Feminists should be about equal rights for ALL. They should try to uplift all women, no matter what they look like, their past, what they are going through. Sh*t like this makes me sick. They only care about "women" that are exactly like them.

    I don't want to be anything like them.
    Yup. Feminists who reject intersectionality are not the kind of feminist I want to be represented by.

  13. #13
    Clever User Title Mara's Avatar
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    This part of the feminist movement has probably been the most destructive enemy to transsexual people in the past fifty years. They were the ones who lobbied various governments to not recognize our rights and who have spread some of the worst transphobic vitriol. In all seriousness, I've seen less hate and more respect from some far-right fundamentalists than I have these people. Focus on the Family talks about "ex-trans" treatments; quite a few members of this section of the overall feminist movement talk about trans women being rapists, have lobbied organizations to fire us, and have lobbied governments to oppress us. And that includes a lot of the biggest names in second-wave feminism, unfortunately, including some who still get a lot of respect for it, or at least a platform. (I saw a Gloria Steinem piece on CNN the other day, for instance.)

    EDIT: Also, they're the source of most of the criticism against second-wave feminism as a movement interested in the rights of middle-class white women alone. Some of them also believed in political lesbianism--straight women "choosing" to be lesbian as a protest against the patriarchial system--and then criticized actual lesbians for reinforcing gender binaries with butch/femme trends, and things like that. And any time some asshole like Rush Limbaugh needs something "Feminazi" to hate, there's plenty of statements from this bunch to add ammunition.
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  14. #14
    a demon for tea EMaree's Avatar
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    Damn it, I liked the Guardian. I'm really running low on UK news outlets I can enjoy reading.
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  15. #15
    I was only joking! Honest! mirandashell's Avatar
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    Was it a Julie Burchill article? I just ignore her now. She's always been a vicious bitch.


    But then, I also appreciate that I can ignore her cos it's not me she's attacking. And I do appreciate it.

    She's the kind of woman I don't want to be represented by as a woman. And yeah, she's the reason a lot of women now won't identify as feminist. Even if they are, like me.

    She's foul and horrible and I am really surprised at the Grauniad.
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  16. #16
    And so... Tepelus's Avatar
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    Wow. I have no words to describe the sheer stupidity of that article.

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  17. #17
    I was only joking! Honest! mirandashell's Avatar
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    When you live here, you can just say 'Julie Burchill' and those are words enough.
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  18. #18
    practical experience, FTW benbenberi's Avatar
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    Roz Kaveney posted a rebuttal at The Guardian today.

  19. #19
    Clever User Title Mara's Avatar
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    I can never remember to update this signature.

  20. #20
    I was only joking! Honest! mirandashell's Avatar
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    Ah.... The article in the OP isn't actually in the Grauniad, it's in the Observer. Which makes a lot more sense.

    The rebuttal is in the Grauniad. And it makes a lot of sense. But I doubt Burchill will even be aware it's been written, never mind read it and understand it.
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  21. #21
    A bit of a wallflower absitinvidia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by benbenberi View Post
    Roz Kaveney posted a rebuttal at The Guardian today.
    What a fantastic response. Well-written, calm and respectful, and full of context. I am very impressed.

  22. #22
    phoenix blazing Parametric's Avatar
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    The Observer is the Sunday version of the Guardian, and the article is hosted on the main Guardian website, hence the confusion.

  23. #23
    I was only joking! Honest! mirandashell's Avatar
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    Is it? I thought the Observer was the Sunday version of the Mail or the Express! You know, one of the right-wing loopy papers. I didn't actually click on the link in the OP cos I didn't want to add to their traffic.

    My apologies.
    I wish I was a glow worm. A glow worm's never glum. Cos how you can be grumpy when the sun shines out your bum?

  24. #24
    Gypsy, wasted from the hips down. Melanie Dawn's Avatar
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    nothing surprises me anymore. Maybe that's the wrong approach, too hands off or whatever, but i just shake my head and continue to try and educate as best as i can.
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  25. #25
    A bit of a wallflower absitinvidia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mirandashell View Post
    Is it? I thought the Observer was the Sunday version of the Mail or the Express! You know, one of the right-wing loopy papers. I didn't actually click on the link in the OP cos I didn't want to add to their traffic.

    My apologies.
    The OP link should point to a site that has reproduced the article. My apologies if that link has since broken (if the site was asked to take down the article). I did this to avoid linking to the article at the O/G site.

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