Also.Also.Also: How British Feminism Is Being Eaten Alive by TERFs and Other Stories for Your Day

Good morning! Happy last day of me being this age! Oh I’ll remember it fondly — me, you, all these links. I’ll think back on this last day of me being this age and I’ll say, “I hope each person found something that spoke to them that day; hope the variety of links was sufficient.” 💌 🎂

Queer as in F*ck You

How British Feminism Became Anti-Trans

LGBTQ Parents Face ‘State-Sanctioned Discrimination,’ American Bar Association Says

A Night Club Map of Harlem

The Gay History of America’s Classic Children’s Books

I Thought I Understood My Trans Body—Then I Tried VR by A.E. Osworth! You know them!

Young LGBTQ Families Are Growing Dramatically, Survey Finds

Who Gets to Decide What Your Anatomy Is Capable Of?

Remembering Babs Siperstein, the First Lady of New Jersey Transgender Activism

Arizona ‘Funding Anti-LGBT Hate Group’ With ‘In God We Trust’ License Plates

Tennessee Bills Would Allow Adoption Agencies to Deny LGBT Couples on Religious Grounds.


Saw This, Thought of You

The Period Emoji Is Finally Coming (And There’s A Waffle And An Otter Too) — a hearty thank you to everyone who DM’d me about this 🙏💉❣️

This is a Schitt’s Creek appreciation post.

It’s (Still) Hard Out Here for Women Producers And Songwriters

Student Loan Relief or Paid Vacation? These Workers Get a Choice

A Hole Opens Up Under Antarctic Glacier — Big Enough to Fit Two-Thirds of Manhattan. Yikes bye.

Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here. She's 37, has two kids, two dogs, one cat, one Megan, and some personal essays.

Laneia has written 871 articles for us.

43 Comments

  1. Happy birthday for tomorrow, Laneia! I hope you get some time to enjoy the new season of One Day at a Time, which I can only assume is being given to the world as a birthday present for you and me and everyone else whose birthday it is tomorrow.

  2. #NotAllBritishFeminists

    The transphobes are very vocal and will try every avenue. I don’t think Mumsnet are left wing, they seem like Daily Mail readers. They are so obnoxious that the NSPCC (National Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Children) cancelled a planned Facebook Live discussion with them due to the transphobic questions Mumsnet users kept sending them about their inclusive policies.

    Sadly The Guardian newspaper, which is otherwise left wing, seems to think there is a debate to be had about gender and women’s spaces. (I cancelled my Guardian membership and upgraded my Autostraddle membership at the same time a few months ago as a result of being sick of their stance on this. They sometimes have trans friendly articles but they also have transphobic ones).

    Happy Birthday Laneia!

    • It’s not just the Guardian 🙁 it’s in academic spaces too… So called ‘academic feminists’ being very loud about the “need to have a conversation” as if trans folks haven’t been defending their right to fucking live for the past decades…

      The UCU (national union for Further & Higher Education) invited a TERF academic as speaker to one of their national annual seminars…

      • Academic ‘feminist’ TERFS are the worst. Especially given, as academics, that you think they’d have read enough to see the historic parallels in what they are doing? Painting a minority as a sexual predator in order to incite male violence has a long and storied history.

        Honestly, part of me just thinks they’re thrilled to have a socially acceptable bigotry to indulge in.

        Every TERF i’ve met has been white, middle class and falls into one of two categories;

        a hetero, ‘feminist’ woman looking and living a very conventional, patriarchal life, who projects her discomfort about that onto trans women and non gender conforming men;

        lesbian, butch women with a strong femme phobic streak – the type who police the gender expression of other women and think trans women are privileged dudes trying to get one over on them somehow.

        • And what shits me about these femme- and transphobic butch-presenting TERFs is that I’m only slightly younger than that Brit contingent (Julie Bindel is like 5 years older) and I could be interpreted as being *like* them, and I have been understandably encountering a lot more wariness from transpeople in particular as a result of those wankers.

          There’s a similar contingent in Oz, and one of them, Shelia Jeffreys, was a lecturer at the university an ex of mine attended in Melbourne. Jeffreys turned to my (femme-presenting) ex during a tutorial one day and TOLD HER in front of the class that by wearing lipstick, she “wanted to be raped”. Needless to say, she didn’t go back. She still amazingly considers herself to be a feminist – the kind that knows how to think independently.

          What a thing to say to a 19-year-old in your fucking class on feminism. Imagine if a male lecturer had said that to a female student, even nearly 30 years ago.

          I still can’t get over the level of emotional violence implicit in that statement and to be honest, that just epitomises their attitude to anyone they feel threatened by. And how pathetic the logic is from a so-called intellectual.

          What’s ironic about the Jeffreys thing is that my ex’s long-standing partner is trans and non-binary. I can *just* imagine what the stupid cow would think of that AND the continued lipstick-wearing.

          • It’s disgusting; Jeffreys should have lost her job for that. And it’s definitely not feminist in any way. What happened to “whatever we wear, wherever we go?”

            Honestly, TERFs have managed what Catholicism, MRAs and the patriarchy failed to do in that they’ve made me wary of feminist discourse and feminists themselves. And I’m not even trans – I just don’t want to deal with people like that.

            I’m not saying I’m perfect in any way – I held a lot of questionable views growing up, and at one point thought being trans was to do with repressed gender non conformity. **When I was young, Catholic and hadn’t met any trans people**.

            It’s pretty shocking to see people in their sixties, with multiple degrees and a public platform, espouse views I grew out of by the age of 20.

    • Nah, Mumsnet are the kind of people who have serious conversations about whether it’s possible to spend less than £200 on a weekly shop. I’ve complained to the Guardian on numerous occasions about their TERF apologia and I’ve told them I won’t be spending one penny on them until they retract the TERF manifesto they published last October.

      • I should do the same thing. I wrote a letter of complaint about Bindel a couple of years ago (I think my final trigger was the anti-sexworker article), but I’m embarrassed that I didn’t realise she’s still contributing at least monthly to the Grauniad. I blocked her author profile years ago in the app, where I do most of my reading.

        I did write again about that horrible thing last October, but didn’t think to put my money where my mouth is (I am a paid subscriber at present). Thanks for the heads-up.

        • Honestly, it’s up to you! I wasn’t trying to shame you or pressure you at all. The Guardian have featured trans authors as well, and if you want to support them there’s nothing wrong with that! It’s just that for me, the Oct article was the final straw. And given that the Independent feature the absolutely vile Sarah Ditum (who said we should all be nicer to Leelah Alcorn’s abusive parents) there aren’t that many option for media.

          • Oh, no, no pressure from you at all!

            I am just a bit embarrassed I didn’t think to put my money where my disgust with some of those Guardian pieces is!

      • A TERF, who incidentally, is a Mormon. Just like Greer, Raymond and Daly are / were Catholics. It’s amazing how many links there are between evangelical, patriarchal religion and these supposedly ‘radical feminists’.

        • INDEED. I’ve never been religious, and when I first came out in the mid-80s, everyone was like “you should read all this stuff, you like to read about feminist and lesbian theory!”

          Well, I quickly learned that while I’m a feminist and queer (and pretty much a dyke), I didn’t want to call myself a “lesbian-feminist” because that meant a whole big bill of goods. They were anti butch/femme as well (and I’m definitely butch!). I suppose I should be grateful I didn’t realise I was kinky until much later.

          Secondly, it was pretty damn obvious to me as a complete atheist who had been brought up at the very least agnostic (NO religion in my family, close and extended) that many of these writers had replaced their repressive patriarchal religion with another set of repressive prescriptive “morality” rules that you had to follow exactly to achieve “salvation”.

          And as part of that religion, some people, like those terrible trans people, could never hope to be “saved”, even though many of those writers also prated we should all be “beyond gender”. Funny how that line’s dried up in those circles now.

          So yeah, you’re right, they just swapped one horrible irrational repressive religion with another.

  3. I was reading that TERF article in the New York Times and I followed the link to an article about TERFs putting up a sign in Liverpool that had the Google definition of woman on it. So, it said:

    woman

    noun

    adult human female

    Umm, that doesn’t even support your argument, you weirdos! Adult human female includes trans women! I mean, I know it doesn’t in a TERF mind, but it doesn’t make sense for them to pay for a billboard that trans women and trans allies could also look at and say, “Yep. Agreed.”

    • If you’re expecting TERFS to be logical, then you’re going have to brace yourself. They’re not. Some prominent TERFs have allied themselves with far-right groups, other have expressed surprise at these far right groups then being misogynistic.

      You make a really excellent point that most people would look at that statement and see nothing to disagree with. I think perhaps what that article is trying to convey, and I don’t think quite hits the mark, is that “The Debate” in Britain, in the mainstream media, is often between quite old school feminists, (who are maybe used to fighting for the recognition of women as equally deserving of rights within a binary system, and recognition for women-specific needs within that system (ie, Period justice, more maternity leave, support for victims of doestic abuse)) and more modern, intersectional feminists, who include queer theroy, post-colonial understanding of gender, marxist interpretations etc to try to deconstruct the power of ‘gender.’
      And this is new and this work is still being done, so it does sound a bit academic and not ‘common sense,’ and what happens is that your words then get twisted to “Are you saying that a woman is not ‘an adult human female,’ and you’re like “Well, it’s actually an embodied identity constructed through relational interactions between the hegemonic structures of society as performed by individuals” and then you find yourself arguing with a billboard that’s understood by most people as correct.
      So… you’re not wrong, but I guess The Discourse is at an awkward adolescent stage right now.

  4. Happy Birthday! Hope you have a good one!

    This para is excellent:
    “It’s also worth noting that the obsession with supposed “biological realities” of people like Ms. Parker is part of a long tradition of British feminism interacting with colonialism and empire. Imperial Britain imposed policies to enforce heterosexuality and the gender binary, while simultaneously constructing the racial “other” as not only fundamentally different, but freighted with sexual menace; from there, it’s not a big leap to see sexual menace in any sort of “other,” and “biological realities” as essential and immutable. ”

    But I wanted to chime in on the “not all British feminists” line. Not even most, and given that there’s relatively little coverage of Britain on AS, perhaps just having “British Feminists are TERFs” is a little… I think it maybe gives more power to what is still quite a niche narrative, like expecting all Americans to be creationists.

    Also, I swim at the place used in the picture to illustrate this and they are _explicitly_trans inclusionary and the lifeguards go out of their way to welcome trans women. So maybe you could make that clear somewhere, because otherwise people might be put off going! If any London based AS readers want to come and swim then join the FB group and make yourself known and I’ll go with you. It’s cold rn but so beautiful.

  5. good. good. nothing is forgotten, nothing will be forgotten and i am proud your cult fails and goes openly irrelevant with all-out petty hatred here in UK of all places.

    For an upstart cult who declared a complete sacrifice and then failed to implement the genocide in 1976 – from the occult perspective the price is that they will take the place of their declared but undelivered sacrifice.

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