Why be transphobic when you could just be quiet?

Why be transphobic when you could just be quiet?

Casual transphobia may just be the root of all transphobia and it occurs more often than you think. It seems as though society as a whole has progressed over the decades when it comes to being tolerant and even being allies for the LGBTQ community.

If you’re on Twitter, you must know that casual transphobia has been a reoccurring joke for some time. Tweets such as, “Let’s not assume their gender” or “Now I could identify as a toaster” are some of the many circulating the social media site.

There are some individuals who take to social media to voice their belief that if a person were born with certain genitals, they must conform to society’s binary system accordingly.

It’s important to note that casual transphobia doesn’t only take form over social media. A couple of weeks ago, a woman stood up and confronted Rose McGowan, a self-proclaimed feminist, about her transphobic comments on RuPaul’s podcast, “What’s the Tee?”.

“They (trans women) assume because they felt like a woman on the inside… that’s not developing as a woman,” said McGowan about the podcast. “That’s not growing as a woman. That’s not living in this world as a woman and a lot of the stuff I hear trans complaining about, yeah, welcome to the world.”

The trans woman who confronted McGowan during an appearance at Barnes & Noble accused McGowan of not doing enough for trans women and also citing her “white cis feminism”.

“Don’t label me, sister,” McGowan shouted. “Don’t put your labels on me. Do not put your labels on me. I don’t come from your planet.”

If there is anything you should know about feminism, Ms. McGowan, it is this: if your feminism doesn’t include ALL womenyes including trans womenit is not feminism.

Trans women are women. Trans men are men. Those who do not identify with the binary are non-binary.

The problem with casual transphobia is that people’s identities are treated as a joke and we all know that jokes are a part of culture. Culture affects how people behave towards other people. Transphobic jokes are putting women and men in danger every single day.

McGowan’s comments about trans women who don’t live in this world as a “woman” are extremely harmful, not to mention invalidating to their identity. Being a feminist means being inclusive to all women including trans women and women of color.

It’s very disappointing and unfortunate for me to see casual transphobia on my Twitter timeline and to see someone like McGowan, who was sexually assaulted by Harvey Weinstein, to be so exclusionary to trans women.

There is still so much we can learn as we grow. I’ve only just turned 19 and I still have so much to learn about feminism and how I can be an ally to minorities. But I do know one thing, feminism is an inclusive movement and there is no place for transphobia.