I got a lot of messages like yours that were bordering on antagonizing, but I’ll respond to you: this was entirely news to me, and I never meant to be offensive.
I’ll be honest: I think it’s a little much to get upset about this, but I am fully aware that I’m living life on Scalzi’s Lowest Difficulty Setting, with the Celebrity Cheat enabled, so I’ll own that reality up front. My ancestors murdered untold numbers of Native Americans, and I hate that my country was built on their blood, and I hate that the worst poverty in America exists on Tribal lands. What I hate the most is how many Americans don’t know or care. Those issues are, in my opinion, more important than words. Having said that, I see the point you make, that so much has already been taken from native people, and when a White Guy takes something more, it’s uncool.
I never meant to take anything from anyone. I think Spirit Animals are really cool, and I love everything I’ve ever learned about native or aboriginal culture. I’m not trying to appropriate or lessen anything by expressing how much Kelly Sue inspires me, and how I try to be more like her.
It’s amazing how problematic this apology is. I don’t even think Wil gets that he’s whitesplaining.
For the education of those who might find themselves in this situation, here’s a primer on what’s wrong with this response.
First: “I got a lot of messages like yours that were bordering on antagonizing, but I’ll respond to you”
I didn’t like the Tone those other people used. Yours was appropriate! I’ll talk to you.
Second: “I think it’s a little much to get upset about this, but…”
This doesn’t affect me and I’ve never given it two seconds worth of thought. And even though I’m about to launch into a whole explanation of how I get it, I need you to know that my first reaction is that everyone is oversensitive.
Third: “My ancestors murdered untold numbers of Native Americans, and I hate that my country was built on their blood”
This outpouring of white guilt somehow brings it all back to me and how I feel. Curious that.
Fourth: “I never meant to take anything from anyone. I think Spirit Animals are really cool”
THIS WOULD BE THE CRUX OF THE PROBLEM, SIR. SIR? SIR.
Fifth: “I’m not trying to appropriate or lessen anything by expressing how much Kelly Sue inspires me, and how I try to be more like her.”
The point is not what you were or were not trying to do, it’s how what you did affects others. Why don’t you express your admiration for Kelly Sue in ways that are not appropriative? Why MUST you express admiration in this exact way?
Also, how fucking hard is it to say: “Oh, I did not realize that invoking Spirit Animals like that is a problem. I won’t do it again." ? That’s really all you needed to say. You didn’t need to whitesplain or get defensive AT ALL.
Let Wil Wheaton serve as an example of What Not To Do! Trust me on this, y’all.
Further reason to never take Wil Wheaton seriously ever
'i get to decide what's oppressive or not! lol cultural appropriation is uncool, but i'm gonna do it anyways!'
i haTE it when people are like
awww guys who are nice to their little siblings <3333333
guys who are sweet with old people <33333333
guys who respect their mothers <333333
guys who are glorified in society for doing things that are expected of everyone else because theyre the most basic forms of human kindness <3333
guys who don’t commit mass genocide <33333333
I’m really uncomfortable with the discussion going on about the Cho Chang poem. It seems the girl made a mistake about the origin/ ethnicty of Cho Chang’s name and so people’s focus is entirely on that instead of the very valid points she’s making about Harry Potter. Not all Asian women have the same experience across the diaspora and she’s speaking from a very specific experience of growing up in a white-dominant culture with only stereotypes and fetishes to represent her, a culture that takes for granted the supposed “natural” submission of Asian women. I’m not saying we shouldn’t critique the poem or that we should leave her mistakes intact but we also shouldn’t throw out the proverbial baby with the bathwater because she’s making some legitimate points about a narrative that’s almost universally adored. And let me tell you as a WOC in fandom it takes major guts to speak about race in a beloved text when said text is by written by a white person and features white protagonists. And the HP fandom is no exception when it comes to racism/whitewashing/ erasure/ tokenizing etc.
JK Rowling is many things, but an expert at engaging institutional oppression she isn’t. Like most white writers who write fantasy fiction she’s very ignorant about the dynamics of race and privilege. I say this as someone who loves Harry Potter. HP is not a great example for POC representation at all, in fact it has some very problematic tropes (don’t even get me started on Voldermort’s pet snake Nagini)
#it’s clear from the tags of the commenter who pointed out the mistake that they otherwise support the original person #and then there was this weird and gross dogpiling #can we not? #esp since idk i feel weird jumping into a convo b/w sino ppl #but i do support the idea of calling out hp and jkr for issues of representation#hp #isms #representation
Yup, the commenter who pointed out the mistake doesn’t go on to discredit the entire poem, but people seem to be using her critique to ignore the OP and it’s grossly appropriative to use the voice of one POC to erase another’s. I’m not claiming to be an expert on the specificities of experience here by any means, just wanted to support the poet because I know how hard it can be to speak up.
the real mystery of clara is how she manages to be a 24-year-old in 2013 who went to university but can’t connect her laptop to the wifi
It’s 2013, we’ve had more than a decade to get used to being in the 21st century, so I think we need to collectively get our shit together and decide that there are a few things we never, ever, ever, “Debate,” again. Not to mention the fact that there are a few things we need to stop being creepily obsessed with.
1. Human Rights*
This is profoundly simple: You’re a human being, yes? GREAT, you get exactly the same rights as anybody else. We don’t cherry-pick who gets to be considered a full human being anymore. We don’t put up with assholes trying to do this anywhere. We don’t make excuses for assholes trying to deny people human rights. End. Of. *This means that regardless of country, age, race, gender, sexuality, color, religion, economic status, etc. No, there are no loopholes. You’re human, you get the same rights as anyone.
2. Bad math
When it comes to poverty, taxes,statistics of any kind, the economy, and unemployment rates. Stop presenting cooked numbers as fact. Stop using bad metrics. Stop assuming people are ignorant.
3. The lack of journalistic integrity that is turning the media into a propaganda and/or tabloid entity. Journalism is a public trust. Whether you’re an online site or a major television outlet: no making shit up, no twisting the facts to suit an agenda, no reporting rumor as fact, no more out of context quotes. Suck it up and do the job.
4. Whether or not misogyny, rape culture, racism, or any other form of bigotry still exists: they do. We should get on that.
5. “Reverse,” anything. Seriously: shut up. If you’re talking about, “Reverse,” bigotry, misandry, blahblahblah, you are putting a spotlight on your own head while holding up a sign that says, “I am an intellectually lazy troll.” This is the, “I know you are but what am I,” of grown up life.
6. Abortion/Reproductive Rights/Access to Reproductive Care: It’s not your body, you don’t get to make decisions about it. If you don’t believe using birth control or having an abortion is moral: don’t do those things. A uterus is not public property. If you don’t want to perform an abortion: don’t be a gynecologist. If you don’t want to dispense birth control: don’t be a pharmacist.
7. Whether LGBTQIA people have a right to protection from discrimination: See #1. Human rights. End. Of.
8. Victim Blaming.
Not ever, ever ever again. The only time we make excuses for crimes is when we are biased against the victims. Someone gets shot while being a PoC, we assume the cop or citizen had a reasonable belief that they were in danger. Someone gets shot while being white and there’s a horrible rending of clothes and gnashing of teeth, until we try to prevent gun crime. Someone is killed because of domestic violence, and we ask why they didn’t leave. Someone is raped and we ask what they were doing/drinking/wearing or whether they were sexually active. Stop. Stop it. Stop it now.
9. Behaving as though saying one smart thing, or being reasonable on one issue means that someone is actually a reasonable human being.
Rand and Ron Paul, for example: They believe in civil liberties, except if you have a uterus. Let the cognitive dissonance echo around you, because THAT ISN’T HOW CIVIL LIBERTIES WORK.
10. Celebrity Marriages: Because they’re none of our damn business.
Nobody talks shit about porn bloggers. Nobody talks shit about sports bloggers, comedy bloggers, tech bloggers or movie bloggers.
But talk about racism or misogyny and suddenly you need to get off the internet and go live your life, and stop being so focused on one thing.
you know what would be awesome?
if fanfic writers would stop putting the fucking deductions sherlock made on john from PINK
we all know it by now
A great deal of the time people read me as a non gender-conforming woman. Every once in a while I’m read as a young teenage cisgender boy. And sometimes this interesting thing happens: someone reads me as a cisgender male and then figures out that I’m not, and falls all over themselves to apologize. I’ll share a few examples.
It’s on my mind because it happened to me earlier today, so I’ll start with that one. A waiter was taking drink orders and I asked if he had anything local on tap to recommend. He gave me this really weird look and shot a look to the other people at the table. “Ummm…. can I see your ID?” he asked doubtfully, as if certain I wouldn’t be able to produce it. He apparently hadn’t noticed, but I already had it out because I’m used to this treatment. I handed it to him. His face fell and went pale. “Oh… oh my gosh, I’m so sorry. It was the hat.” He touched my shoulder, too, which I thought was creepy… anyway, yeah, as soon as he said “it was the hat” I knew what he meant to say: he (correctly) read me as a boy.
Something similar happened to me in another restaurant setting. A waitress came up to me and the person I was with (also a guy) and greeted us with, “Good evening, gentleman.” I started to get into that very happy mood that only a trans* person who has been read as their correct gender can understand, but it was immediately cut short. She looked right at my face, and that was enough to tell her I was NOT her version of a “gentleman.” As with the waiter earlier today, her face fell and lost some color. “Oh, ma’am, I am soooo sorry. I’m sorry, I just saw you from behind and the hat…” Apparently hats (a beanie today, a baseball cap then) are like magical devices that guarantee you get read as male.
In another public setting, a child came up to me and asked if I was a girl or a boy. I love children’s reactions to me, I really do. Before I had time to decide whether or not I was going to lie to save the child from confusion or tell the truth and risk a parent accusing me of being a creep, the mom came over and must have overheard the child’s question, because she was all profuse apologies.
I think what’s funny about these instances is when someone thinks that they’ve misgendered me, they treat it as if they just slapped me in the face, as if it was the rudest, absolutely worst thing one human being could do to another. They act as if they’ve just humiliated me and stripped me of basic dignity. And what’s striking about they way they act about this, is it’s true, it DOES feel that way when I’m REALLY misgendered (read as a woman).
But you know what? When I am actually misgendered by someone who knows that I identify as a man, they don’t seem to see it the same way as misgendering a person who is presumably cisgender. For people who are supportive of me, obviously, they’re apologetic, but it’s not treated as the earth shattering event that it’s treated as in the above examples. For people who aren’t, my request to be spoken to as a man (name, pronouns, etc) is taken as selfish and ridiculous. Imagine I were cisgender and the above examples were cases of actual misgendering. Who would be so rude as to think that my desire to be read as a woman was selfish? I obviously didn’t get angry in the above situations, but what if I had? I imagine they would have assumed I had every right to be angry and hurt and self-conscious about being misgendered. And yet as a transgender person, the fact that really being misgendered DOES make me angry, hurt, and self-conscious is not respected and is often made fun of and misunderstood.
I think it’s something cisgender people should keep in mind. Don’t diminish the effects of misgendering on a person. We clearly understand them—evidence of it is everywhere. All we want is the same respect for our gender that you clearly expect to show to people who aren’t trans*.