A real dialogue on trans issues - Page 2

Intolerant film "The Gendercator" brought out the best in community response

To decry the ban on The Gendercator is thus disingenuous, particularly when many of the "anticensorship" and "nonbinary" voices support events that ban trans people from attending based on the presence or absence of a penis.

Yet there are some important messages about this film that should not be lost.

First, if our community artists are going to claim dialogue as justification for blatant attacks, then they should expect to have that dialogue. Some of the questions the queer community has posed in its discussion of the film are: Why does Crouch think her views are nonbinary? How do femmes, bisexuals, butches of color, nonop male-identified trans people, and dykes who choose breast cancer reconstruction fit into her limited view of sex and gender? How does the glorification of masculinity in lesbian circles and the sexism in butch and genderqueer communities contribute to this perceived pressure to transition to male?

Most important, if gays and lesbians feel that the growing transgender population means they are under attack, how can we come together to make sure this concern is heard and validated without demonizing one another? Several events exist in San Francisco to deal with such tensions, but perhaps they aren't reaching the smart and articulate people whose need for real dialogue has been reduced to lamenting the loss of a 15-minute monster movie.

Opposing the inclusion of a deliberately divisive and dialogue-stopping film in an event designed to build community was something we did not do because we don't want to have a community conversation, but because we do. *

Zak Szymanski

Zak Szymanski is the producer and editor of the short film The Wait.