Gift-wrapped Activism

A couple of my fellow sex education teamsters and I went to an activist conference this weekend. It was for getting activists together from around the state and doing a skills share. Sounds pretty cool, right?

Getting there, us four radicals couldn’t help feeling a bit out of place. There was no gender neutral bathroom, which was a real pain in the ass for me. There was un-inclusive language and out of date, un-PC vocabulary all over the place. AND the place was crawling with paid government officials and wannabes promoting themselves. WTF?

My pal and I did a Queer Inclusive Organizing workshop to try to queer it up a bit and two people showed up. And they were fucking queer organizers! There was a score of talk about the November election, which is apparently still interesting to some people. The “discussion” consisted of people patting themselves on the back because they are “sustainable,” “progressive,” and work “on the ground.” Who the hell talks like that? And I love how everyone has attached themselves to the word “progressive” now days. Its less controversial than saying liberal, coating it with pink pepto so it’s easy to swallow. We wouldn’t want to upset anyone now would we?

The plenary speaker talked about getting more with less, and giving more to those who have less, but it didn’t seem to translate to the audience. I spent a collective 25 minutes trying to answer this dude’s questions about inclusive organizing. He avoided every answer that didn’t sound like a quick solution. When referring to people of color and the trans/genderqueer population he asked “But, how do we get those people to support us?” He continued on to say, “You think we can just get one of each?”

I’m still amazed I didn’t have an aneurism.

Now, I realize I’m being a little harsh. I’m not against all establishmentary activism. I’m down with collaboration to reach a goal. I’m not down with tooling around like a sell-out showman, claiming to make a change in the world when I won’t even make change in myself.

cross-posted on AmplifyYourVoice.org

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