Harlots Parlour

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In Bindel Tales I explored the lies told about myself by the journalist and so called feminists Julie Bindel in her article about the IUSW (International Union of Sex Workers). What I did not explore were the many other reasons why people should avoid this woman and her new magazine called Gaze review.

Matther Buckley in his brilliant article “The Treachery of Gaze Review” further explores Julie Bindel and her friends deeply entrenched dislike of trans people and also of gay men.
Part of his article follows with link to full article:

It would be a candy floss conceit in daring to believe homophobia and transphobia were a thing of the past. Because many of us have straight friends, a delusion can occur, whereupon in their minds they imagine the world at large to be comfortably accommodating of their sexuality. If this was only true. We’ve come so far. We’ve a long way to go. Bigotry exists, and not only in the outside world. It exists amongst us.

The large striped umbrella that still is the LGBT community – a floppy, saggy umbrella, yes – but one that just about keeps a necessary cohesion and a way in and out to accommodate many varied people with often radically different lifestyles. There are reasons why the LGBT community matters. Bigotry and the fight against it is best tackled in numbers. It provides services and safety nets to those unsure of their sexuality, those coming out, people battling with gender dysphoria, and it engenders a loosely defined sense of unity, though L, G, B & T are in and of themselves as different as the moon and stars.

One important aspect of the LGBT community has always been the part that gender studies and politics in particular has played. Historically, of course, the debate for this was limited to lecture halls and universities, and information was culled from gay print publications. Now, thankfully, we can all have a voice, the downside being it can often be lost without being heard. So, initially I was interested to hear of a new online/iPad magazine, Gaze, which, on the surface seemed to promise something different from what some of the older, established magazines had offered – magazines that had been primarily been targeted towards gay men. Superficially, it seemed Gaze Review was reaching out to the LGBT community. I was wrong about this.

This next bit isn’t meant to condescend, but it’s important and simple – Lesbian – Gay – Bisexual – Transgender. That’s what the acronym LGBT stands for. I state that, because it makes what follows fall into place very quickly.

Even amongst progressives, perhaps the most marginalised, stigmatised, and misunderstood in the LGBT community are the Transgender population. I’m a gay man, and whilst many didn’t have the easy experience I did, my struggle to accept “who I was” was mere piffle compared to the years of dysphoria, fears of familial rejection, which are often not unfounded, up until recently, near ridicule in the medical profession, and in public and in the press, often outright derision and mockery.

It is only now that issues such as gender reassignment are being treated as seriously as they should – not only for the individual on health and emotional levels, but also financially. The cost of reassignment surgery in the long term, a far more reasonable option than the chronic ongoing issues of treating mental health issues such as the incumbent periods of major depressive disorder, and alarmingly high suicide rates. It costs far less to perform vocal cord surgery on a male to female reassignment patient, for example, than it does to keep an attempted suicide patient in an intensive care bed for one night.

The route to for any individual seeking reassignment is a long, arduous one. As gay men and women, there is no denying that many of us have dreadful, sickening stories of rejection and betrayal to tell, which are no less painful. But for a person seeking their true selves in a different sex, this process takes years of proving. Granted, this is as much of a guarantor as anything else, yet I can still imagine the abject humiliations and frustrations encountered along the way.

Why does this have anything to with Gaze?

At the helm of this publication, is Managing Editor, Julie Bindel. If you haven’t heard of her, the Transgender Community certainly have. Ms. Bindel is a widely acknowledged to be Transphobic. And I’m putting that in the most conservative of terms. Julie Bindel is also a Feminist Lesbian.

Ms. Bindel wrote an article for The Guardian, entitled, “Gender Benders, beware”, in which she expressed in pungent terms her distaste, in particular, for male to female transsexuals and transsexualism. A lot of people were extremely repulsed by the tone and tenor of her writing, and The Guardian received short shrift for printing the article. The paper received hundreds of letters of complaint from those in academia, medical professors, doctors, therapists, and the transgender community, as well as those supportive of the transgender community. Press for Change quoted this article as an example of “discriminatory writing about transsexual people in the press”.

The greatest offence was focused on particular remarks Bindel wrote in the column, such as, “I don’t have a problem with men disposing of their genitals, but it does not make them women, in the same way that shoving a piece of vacuum hose down your 501’s jeans does not make you a man”, and, “Think about a world inhabited just by transsexuals. It would look like the set of Grease“. Further consternation and revulsion was reported toward the accompanying cartoon, which was in incredibly poor taste, to put it mildly.

Ms. Bindel has not changed her views. She has been quoted as saying that “sex change surgery is unnecessary mutilation”. Tell that to all the people who are now living fulsome happy lives, post re-assignment surgery. Even last week, whilst she was shamelessly attempting to peddle Gaze Review in a Guardian Column, she queried in a barely veiled remark whether there was such a thing as a Transgender Community – which I will come to shortly. Do not be fooled by Julie Bindel. She has not changed her views or her invective toward the Transgender Community.



About Douglas Fox

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This entry was posted on 27 April, 2013 by in IUSW, LGBT and tagged , , , , .
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