I met a transman once who thought Axe body spray was a good way to profess manliness.
I don't really have anything substantive to say about, like, censorship or anything. Just thought that guy was funny for thinking Axe was manly.
The idea that such a film should be banned reminds me very much of the equally stupid idea that we should not even discuss circumcision. One is voluntary body modification the other is not.
Oh San Francisco your heart is in the right place, but please stop.
Um, Dan, this wasn't censorship. Remember when that singer was bounced from Neumos after some gays pointed out how homophobic his lyrics were? If that wasn't censorship, then this isn't censorship.
This was a private entity responding to the expressed wishes of a group of constituents. Everyone, including Frameline, was well within their rights to act as they did.
Is this really censorship?
Doh. You got me, Josef.
We've never shied away from controversy, but we do curate our programming. The Gendorcator will certainly be considered for the Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, Oct. 12-21.
Sorry for being OT, but wondering if Dan has seen this article yet. Money quote: He said he is opposed to gay marriage because it's not in the best interest of children.
And Three Dollar Bill Cinema? Please consider this your first signature on the list of people who'd like this film to appear -- given that it's any good -- regardless of how many angry voices you hear. I'm sure there are plenty others like me. You know, for what it's worth and all...
The gender issue is interesting.
Gays, Lesbians, and Trans people have long been lumped together in the struggle for rights. But to me there is a big difference between being gay and being transgendered.
I'm a gay man. I'm a man. I feel like a man. I have male parts. I don't at all feel like I was born the wrong gender. I have no interest and no desire to be or act like a woman (other than the occasional campy drag for Halloween). But I'm attracted to men. That makes me gay. I like guy/guy sex. I want my parts intact, and I want my male partner's parts intact.
A person born with male parts, but who nevertheless feels like he should have been a woman, who wants to be a woman, who feels like they are physically the wrong gender, and is attracted to men, is not the same thing. They are interested in girl/guy sex (with them as the girl), or perhaps even girl/girl sex.
The civil rights issues are the same. But the psychological and physiological issues are completely different.
I've had to explain this to a few well-meaning straight friends who have asked me outright if I wished I was a woman instead of a man, or if I had ever considered trans surgery. They weren't mocking me, they were genuinely curious, and didn't really understand the difference.
Hey Joseph, the issues are different. If this was a film celebrating and glorifying the murder of trans-people, then yeah it should be shut down by pressure from the public. But this film is nothing like that.
Josef @ 4, you're right that it's incorrect to call this censorship. But it's closer to it than the Neumo's situation because a film exploring a little known but growing phenomenon that probably can't get screened anywhere but at GLBT film festivals is qualitatively different from a musician known for advancing a widely held prejudice. Especially since, in the latter instance, the individual was able to move his show down the hill and was still heard by those who wanted to see him. The filmmaker was prevented from reaching her audience and I bet that many who signed the petition didn't even see it. (Hopefully the filmmaker can post this on YouTube and hope no one flags it as objectionable.)
There ought to be a word to describe this - if it's not censorship, what is it exactly?
Um, no, Tiffany, this is not different. The scale of percieved harm does not distinguish censorship from non-censorship. Trannys saying that a film that calls out the increased rate of transition is assaultive is a lot like gays saying that the anti-gay marriage position is assaultive. Some day we'll be in a position to pressure organizations to keep arts that advocates for the anti-gay marrage position out of festivals. And wouldn't we like to do that? That wouldn't be censorship...
Matt @ 11, I have no idea what I'd call it. AS you can tell from my posts, I'm not much of a wordsmith. Should we call it "Community Pressure" or something like that?
But, no, I don't think this situation is any different from Neumos. Anti-tranny sentiment is high among gays (something that never ceases to piss me off) and "Gendorcator" may very well get shown here and at other festivals. People will be able to see this film if they want to.
We also have no idea if the film was any good. Or if it was offensive. I could totally see a film like this being offensive. Maybe it sucks enough that the Frameline folks didn't think it was worth the fuss to program.
And maybe, just maybe, Frameline was right. Maybe this film was offensive. Maybe when you point out how many people are transitioning, you're assaulting the rights of people to make this incredible decision with dignity. I'm not advocating for Frameline's decision, I'm just saying they could possibly be right.
Josef @ 13 - Yes, they could be right. That's what makes this sort of thing maddening - unless we get to see it we won't know. And since the film wasn't screened I'm assuming that the people behind the petition did it solely based on the program description, not unlike all the religious crackpots who demonstrated theaters that screened Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ 20 years ago. (For the record, I'm straight and have not attended a gay and lesbian film festival, but the premise of this film sure sounds intriguing. And Dan's right, this squabble [or furor if you prefer] served to heighten the film's profile so it backfired.)
Thanks for the clarification about anti-tranny sentiment. It's news but not exactly unsurprising.
Oops, last sentence should read "It's news but not exactly surprising."
Matt read my mind exactly. The premise sounds very interesting. It should be turned into a novel.
Censorship or not, I think Crouch is making an important point -- young butch dykes are dwindling in numbers, and presumably identifying as as trans and/or genderqueer instead. I can see how this could be presented in transphobic way (ie transmen aren't really trans, they're just butch lesbians joining a trend) which is decidedly inappropriate. I don't know how it was presented. Regardless, the space for butch lesbians to identify as women really is shrinking, putting pressure on us to identify as trans instead.
the number of young butches is really dwindling? should'nt there be some sort of government program to save the stereotype?
if only the population of retarded mouthbreathing straight male jocks would dwindle...
The thing with censorship is that it is impossible to ever say whether something "should" be banned without having seen it for oneself. Those that take the power to ban things on our behalf are human, and get things wrong, and sometimes, simply lie.
In this case the film festival are f*cked in the head. If a film festival *isn't* controversial, it is a con.
In this case the film festival are (ahem) *broken* in the head. If a film festival *isn't* controversial, it is a con.
Because many films in festivals of this nature aren't exactly produced by slick high-budget studios, I don't go to a festival to necessarily see a good movie. I do, however expect to be challenged. And what's a film festival with out the dialogue after the film? Whether it's a Q and A at the end of a showing or a conversation with friends over coffee, people talk about it. Or, um, in blog comments fields, even. I wish I could see it so that I would know how to feel about it.
Maybe we should consider this in a larger historical context. Surgical transitioning was not an option until relatively recently in human history, and despite rampant persecution people managed to figure out a way to straddle the gender divide without radical surgery.
Why has radical unchangeable surgery and hormones become the default for people who do not fit into a male/female dichotomy, regardless of sexuality? I think this is a fair question that I hope the movie tactfully asks.
Instead of 'censorship' it should be called 'rimming the PC-police'.
My ex girlfriend transitioned a few years ago and is now a dude. He is now married, working as a mechanic, drives a hunkin' big Ford truck, became a Christian, listens to country music and votes Republican. It's pretty fucking weird for me to see this person who was subversive queer gender bending butch dyke transition into a total bubba. Strange days indeed.
Dam! When I transitioned I didn't get the bubba form to fill out.
I could be driving a hunkin Ford Pick-up truck? What the fuck! I was NEVER informed.
I want my toaster oven back!
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