I Hate the L Word – part II
Some of my friends recently had an L Word party to mark the final L Word episode, but it wasn’t a celebratory “Ding dong the witch is dead!” party as I would hope. It was a get together to watch the last episode and mourn the loss of the show.
I realize that the L Word creates visibility for the lesbian community, offers media representation of “homosexual” women, and has hot sex scenes. Knowing all that, it still isn’t a good enough reason for me to understand the support of it.
A lot of my friends groan or give me a silenced look when I get angry for their L Word interests. They act like I shouldn’t be upset about it, like I should let it go. It’s easy for them to overlook the shit the L Word does cause it’s not their identity on the line. If there was something (like a TV show) that was great for me but shitty for my friend, I couldn’t support it in good conscious no matter how much I enjoyed it.
And the L Word’s offensiveness doesn’t just apply to its fictional writing. It is made by shitty people. I heard Rose Troche speak (an L Word writer and director, including the pregnant Max episode) and she is possibly the most offensive person I have ever heard speak in a queer venue. In addition to her outing co-workers and making fun of eating disorders, in the Q&A she stated that she believed that she provided an “accurate representation” of trans-people. What ego-pumping drug is she smoking?
Similarly, I know so many people who identify themselves as trans-allies, but support the HRC (Human Rights Campaign) which makes no sense to me. There are so many little outlets of transphobia hidden everywhere, I understand when it can’t be totally avoided. I have been forced to HRC events because I had to be there to do activist work or for performing. But there is a difference between doing the minimum civil interaction in order to get the job done and just being lazy. I even know transpeople who support transphobic outlets because it is easier than standing against it. It’s easier to just let transphobia and trans-exclusion slide a little. What people are failing to realize is that it affects us all. Transphobia is homophobia. It is all based on societal gender norms.
I understand that just because someone likes the L Word or the HRC, it doesn’t mean they can’t or don’t support trans and genderqueer people. And I know that there is an element of waiting and patience in all activism. Still, I can’t shake the emotional reaction. Every time, I can’t help thinking “How can you do this to me? There is no difference between us. You just have more rights.”
cross-posted on AmplifyYourVoice.org