I don’t care who you are, so long as you possess the cuntmentality. I want you naked. I want you clothed. I want your stories. I want your differences. I want you just the way you are and I want you on this blog.
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This blog is owned and operated by a bad ass genderqueer who uses they/them pronouns or any gender-neutral pronoun.
What's the Cuntmentality anyway?
A few things first. You don’t have to own a cunt to have the Cuntmentality or even want one. Cunts exist all across the gender spectrum, and affect a wide variety of people. Though just a disclaimer, cis men should tread carefully here, I don't have time to hold your hand and break that down for you.
The Cuntmentality is raw power, derived from a sea of unlimited thoughts, experiences, opinions, fears, dreams, goals, and so forth. It is a call to remove genitals from gender, for cunts are not wed to only one dot in the entire Universe of Gender. It is an idea, an undying answer to those who are need of a safe space, of acceptance and acknowledgement of your pain or shared with others like you. It is the force that bashes back, that doesn't give in, that raises a fist against every oppressive force trying to drive you back into the cultural rot so you can degrade in ignorance and in false messages that claim you're unworthy or that who you are isn't good enough. This is you, this is me, this is every follower that I have in a collective of uncensored beauty that doesn't follow the direction label of the magazine rack. This is the be who the fuck you want to be so long as you're not hurting anyone else mentality. This is the stand up for the people around you mentality. The fuck you I'm queer mentality. The I don't always love myself but today I might mentality. The I'm fucking fabulous mentality. This is the change in perception, the challenge of social norms that dictate how you think, and breathe, the acknowledgment of institutional oppression and every voice that has had the courage to speak up about it, mentality.
The world is unbalanced my friends. We have been lied to on countless occasions. Just know that here, you are never alone and that if you ever need it, I'm never too far. My ask is always open and you're more than welcome to add me on my messenger accounts.
Disclaimers may be in order.
First, I hate everything. It’s seriously the first thing out of my friends’ mouths when I’m done speaking to them. “Ceridwen, why do you hate everything?” Let’s just get that out of the way so I don’t have an inbox full of similar notes when I’m done with this. (What am I saying, people don’t read this blog.)
Second, I understand the intent behind The Hawkeye Initiative. The work that the management is busy with, drawing attention to the sexism inherent in mainstream comics art, is good work. It’s important that more people do this work, and on that level, I wish them success.
The Hawkeye Initiative has been live for about a week now, and the response has been incredible. Quite literally, in fact: It strains credibility to think how quickly this project has taken off. In seven days, the blog has been featured on io9, ONTD, Bleeding Cool, and Know Your Meme.
By comparison, Escher Girls, which has been doing the work of highlighting the sheer amount of sexist art in comics for over a year now, still doesn’t have the following that The Hawkeye Initiative has built in the last seven days. In the interests of full disclosure, the woman behind Escher Girls is a personal friend, but I want to be clear this isn’t a case of envy-by-proxy. I’m more interested in exploring why this discrepancy exists.
My take? People care more about issues of sexual exploitation if that exploitation directly effects men. We see this time and time again in our day-to-day lives. The sexual abuse of young men and boys makes national news, and the narrative surrounding them explores the psychological damage caused by their abuse. “What he might have gone on to achieve” is a common refrain in these stories. Meanwhile, the narrative surrounding the sexual abuse of young women ignores all of this in favor of finding some way in which her rape and abuse was her fault. Even in cases that avoid this trope, such as (most, though not all cases of) the abuse of underage girls, “what she might have gone on to achieve” is never even considered.
While objectification is not as “serious” as rape, it remains a contributing factor in rape culture. So when that culture sees an instance of a man being objectified, even if that objectification is meant to draw attention to similar treatment of women, it reacts in ways it does not when the subject is female. As I said before, Escher Girls has been highlighting this issue for over a year now, but the focus has remained solely on how this issue effects women. Ami provides smart commentary, her readers have contributed redraws showing ways in which the art can not only be less objectifying but objectively better, and the focus remains on women. The Hawkeye Initiative, meanwhile, shifts the focus to a male character, and in so doing, draws the attention of our male-dominated culture.
And that’s assuming the best intentions of the management and their contributors. Go through the archives and count how many times a variation of “This is hilarious, I had to contribute” is used. Be careful here, friends. There’s some intense ugliness hidden behind why you find this so hilarious, and it’s steeped in misogyny, homophobia, and transphobia.
On tumblr, polerin elaborates:
There’s some really nasty shit lurking not too far under the surface of some of the drawings. In some cases, like the ones where they switch clothes, it’s not even too deep.
Making choices of clothing based in femininity/femme-ness on a dood isn’t a context free choice. Doubly so when you are mocking something. It relies on the deep history of cissexism and oppositional sexism in our culture. Even if that’s not the intent of the artist, it is impossible to look at these drawings and not have all the jokes about guys wearing women’s clothing or “acting like a girl” come up. That’s the POINT of these drawings.
And that point pins trans women to the wall as a side effect of (rightly) critiquing the sexism in comics.
Despite the best of intentions, the vibe comes across as really anti-femme, anti-trans women, and ultimately, anti-women. After all, if we’re unable to talk about the mistreatment of women without bringing men into the picture, what does that really say about us? If we’re unable to talk about the mistreatment of women without considering how it effects all women, what does that really say about us?
Boom. Duly noted.
If you haven’t been watching The Colbert Report the past few nights, you probably missed Mr. Colbert’s random potshot transgender people. In a segment on controversial meat additive known as pink slime, Colbert remarked on the alternative name for pink slime, LFTB, saying “LFTB, because our beef now has so many hormones in it that it’s a part of the transgender community.”
Shockingly, some transgender people were offended compared to hormone-laden slime in a story that had absolutely nothing to do with the transgender community. Just like every other mention of trans* people by Colbert, we were only brought in as a punchline.
Now, I certainly didn’t like the joke, but it’s not even close to worst thing Colbert has ever said about trans folk. In January of this year , Colbert invoked the sh-word (rhymes with female, nowhere near as nice) at his Carolina rally to make lame pun on Herman Cain’s first name.
I didn’t expect anything more to come from Colbert’s comment — For some reason he always seems to get a free pass for these kinds of comments. — but the next night, Colbert did issue an apology for the joke. Unfortunately he decided to issue that appology to “any of [his] transgender bovine viewers that may have been offended.” He goes on to mock the argument against forcing strict gender roles on children, which is not strictly even a transgender issue.
So Colbert makes the “mistake” (his word) of calling transgender people hormone-filled slime and “apologizes” for it by calling us cattle. We’ll I’m satisfied, aren’t you?
This comment wouldn’t stick out if Colbert did not already have such a strong history of making disparaging comments about transgender people or if even once on his program he ever covered a story relevant to the transgender community. A search for the tag “transgender” on ColbertNation.com yields 3 results: the two videos mentioned above and an interview with George Stephanopoulos where Colbert jokes about Joe Biden getting sexual reassignment surgery so he could become the first female vice president. Classy.
And do I even have to point out that while Colbert has never had an openly transgender guest on his show, Dan Savage has personally been a guest five times!
Handbasket Productions has an incomplete list of the use of transphobic and trans-insensitive jokes on The Colbert Report and its sister-program The Daily Show. The only goes up to 2007, and there have been plenty since, so if you have any jokes from The Colbert Report or The Daily Show against transgender people that particularly hurt or offended you, please share them in the comments below and your reaction to them. I plan on compiling the worst of them into a single video so links to the actual clips would be appreciated.
Why does so much transmisogyny and privilege-denying bull shit exist within the trans* guy community? This bull shit is ESPECIALLY exhibited by well-off white dudes who are supposed spokespeople for ‘our’ community.
(I.e. Buck Angel, Ryan Cassata, Lucas Silveira, etc.)
Yes, I am calling people out here. Why? I am sick of seeing this oppressive shit all over my dash. Racism. Sexism. Misogyny. Body-shaming. Ableism. (proof here) Really? And what’s more? Some people actually accept and tolerate this shit because these people are ‘famous’. What true fans you are!
Guys, why is it SO hard to admit you have privilege? If you cannot admit that and acknowledge folks who are less privileged, I do NOT want you speaking for me. And I surely do not want you representing what it means to be trans*. All these folks do is reinforce negative, heteronormative stereotypes about trans* guys - a diverse minority of people who deserve fair representation and equal acknowledgment and respect.
Lastly, why do I have to keep bringing this stuff up, guys? Are we not oppressed enough? Now we are creating minorities within minorities here? Why are we actually fighting about what is or is not acceptable oppressive behaviour? Stating your opinion is one thing, but if you are using oppression in ANY way to get a point across or ‘fight for equality’, it is not only hypocritical, but WRONG.
Please note: When people say you are privileged, it is not a personal attack against you. It is not something to be ashamed of. It is something to be acknowledged. Whether you choose to do so is up to you, but it does not change the fact that you all are, in fact, privileged. Deny all you want. Call us whatever you want. Have your fans attack us over these issues. It only further proves our points.
an admitted privileged white trans* guy named Riley
This is awesome, especially the links to their douchefuckery. While these people may have never intended to become role models, they are and celebrities don’t come with a magical aura that prevents them from doing wrong and makes them perfect. Their fans need to realize that we don’t come up with this shit because we’re bored.
If you’re looking for decent therapists in NYC, AVOID Jay Anne (@j_annethestar). This person’s extremely cissexist. They claim to be ‘welcoming’ but evidence from my own interactions with them on twitter indicate otherwise. Please pass along. Don’t want any trans* siblings to be victimized by characters like this.
Holy crap I had an exchange with this person on Twitter as well, and they don’t have a clue. Uses the t-slur constantly, thinks “trans” is a separate gender from “woman”, condescending, refuses to listen to trans people. Avoid like the plague.
She thinks this warning message is free publicity. That’s right people–an oppressed minority spreading a warning message about you for their own safety is “free publicity”. What a disgusting person.
I am not a woman trapped in a man’s body. This body is no man’s; it is mine, it is me, and there is no man in that equation. And I am not trapped in it. There are a million and one ways out of this body, and I have clung to it, tooth and claw, despite an endless line of people and institutions who would rather I vacate the premises, and have sometimes been willing to make me bleed to convince me they’re right.
This body is mine, and I claim it and its bruises, and it is not a man’s, and I am not trapped here. I have looked leaving my body in the eye and I have said, in the end, hell no. There is too much to do, too much to love, too many who need one more of us to say hell no and help them say the same.