Study Guide

Man? Woman? Gay? Transgender? Who Cares? Well, I Do.

Man? Woman? Gay? Transgender? Who Cares? Well, I Do.

Okay, Shmoop devotee, you probably already know how I feel about political correctness, Democrats, civil rights, feminists, and academics. I just want to make sure you know where I stand on the transgender issue, because this one's a biggie, and I don't want anyone to assume I've got this whole "free to be you and me" attitude. I don't.

So here's the deal: I know feminists don't like that I don't think men are pigs. Well, I don't want to throw everyone for a loop, but I'm actually against the idea of being transgender when it comes to the whole surgical thing. I'm a woman who loves women. I also love men, and I think that feminists could benefit from giving up the witch-hunt against men. I love all things gay-related. But that doesn't mean I'm for switching genders. (And I also have a beef against what I call "gay Stalinists"—that is, people who turn queerness into an ax to grind, thereby becoming as dogmatic as the homophobes.)

I was horrified—horrified—by Chastity Bono's sex change. I just don't think we should mutilate our bodies like that. Here's my take: "My point is that the transgender movement's focus on manipulating the physical, through surgery, is too often a way of avoiding introspection. We have an obligation as human beings to engage in self-examination—to seek self-understanding, apart from the social and the physical" (source).

I say great—get out there and explore your identity and sexuality—but don't go under the knife to do it.