Feb. 24th, 2012

  • 11:54 PM
la_vie_noire: (Stop with the idiocy)
Willow is always amazing and you have to read it because I cannot quote it all: Transethnicity Claims, Piracy, Faeries & Appropriation.

The 1st thing to hit me, is how mocking this is to transgendered individuals, that their situation is seen as so damn 'science fiction', somehow, that something as mocking as 'Trans Ethnic' can be set up as part of any kind of conversation. 'So, you think you're not the gender you physically appear to be / were assigned at birth? Ha! I top you. I don't think I'm the ethnicity 'assigned' to me at birth/ that I appear as. And none of this having a damn thing to do with the modification of birth certificates so that NDN people could pass as non-native for a chance at a better life. None of this gets into black who passed as white, to try and life a better, safer life within a white supremacist state. None of this gets into trans racial adoptees and their personal conflicts of identity and how they feel vs how they're treated.

[...]

Cultural appropriation seems to exist, because in order to be white and in order to be USian, various peoples several decades ago decided to put aside their cultural and ethnic heritage in order to fit in. The less you showed some distinct aspect of your identity the more it supposedly meant you were leaving it behind to embrace your new Usian life.

So goodbye, traditions, language, clothing, manners, foods, songs and stories. And now here we are, a couple generations later, with a set of people who want something to belong to, but even in this day and age of Ancestry.com (for white folk) they're not going back to research what they gave up. And I don't know if it's because the attitudes to give it up and leave it behind are still strong, if sub and unconscious. They're instead reaching towards those peoples who've fought and struggled and suffered to hold on to anything at all. And reaching towards peoples whose suffering and oppression has formed a new culture and new identity within this 'new land'. So I suppose it's not surprising so many people want to be Native American - because how much more 'belonging' to this new land could one be? Or that they want to be 'Black' which is an identity that was created on these shores (well these and other places of colonialist import of slaves).

But history and struggle, accomplishment and identity, folklore, stories and song, foods, clothing and culture are not something you can buy in a store.

[...] But whoa. Looking at the terms 'Trans Ethnic', however, makes me feel as if minority/non dominant/colonized culture and societies are somehow as mythical and unreal as fairies, dragons, and spiritual wolves and bears - because ANYONE can decide that's who and what they are and decide to pick it up and somehow 'live by it'. And while you cannot disrespect fairies and dragons, and disrespecting wolves or bears gets you murdered and dead - disrespecting non dominant ethnicities happens, is real, is hurtful and painful and dehumanizing and devaluing.

If your inner self is a water dragon, well, whatever. That's your thing. If your inner self is black? Fuck you. There have always been assholes (particularly teenagers), dressing in certain clothes, copying certain slang, listening to certain music and claiming they were down with __insert ethnic minority here__. New age dressing it up as 'Trans Ethnicism' doesn't change the asshole badge.

[...]

I said I'd talk about Trans Ablism / Trans Disablism, and I will. Disability has a culture, it has many in fact. Deaf culture, isn't blind culture, isn't the myriad wheelchair cultures, isn't invisible disability culture, isn't chronic illness culture, isn't ... the list goes on. Those cultures too? Came out of struggle and strife, dedication, hard work and more. They were created to sustain the myriad peoples who're involved in them. They have their dark ass times, their deprivations and horrors, their triumphs, their moments of weeping for joy and of pain. There are institutions, schools, lock aways, slurs, words, language, music, dance, art, etc, and yes they were all created - some of them only a couple hundred years old. But they? Are REAL. You don't get to go shopping for them either.

Cause this shopping people are doing, has nothing to do with learning the history of anything, it's just another type of entitlement. It's grubby grabby hands. It's trying to fill some lack and hole with someone else's inheritance. It's grabbing someone else's sandwich cause they dealt with the jeers and kept their food, and you threw yours aside.

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