What Part of ‘Dan Savage is a Transphobic Turd’ Needs Further Explanation?

From Tobi Hill-Meyer at Shillerico:

On November 9th, Dan Savage was the recipient of a “glitter bomb” stunt for the second time this month so far. He was continuing his MTV tour at University of California Irvine.  One of the students involved in the stunt was grabbed by the police and arrested.

According to my source at the event, Savage was in the middle of answering a question from a student who was wondering if her boyfriend was a freak because he watched porn featuring trans women. Savage suggested that her boyfriend was a freak, while freely using the terms “shemale” and “freaky tranny porn.” That is when two individuals ran up and threw glitter on him yelling “Transphobe!” Someone from the MTV tech crew muttered “Oh, not again!” Savage laughed it off and said that being gay he loves glitter.

Later, when another student was asking him about the incident, Savage answered, “I’m used to it.”

Savage’s use of the terms “tranny” and “shemale” are a minor part of the complaints being lodged against him, however, the use of those slurs is the most visible and most discussed part of them. Savage has claimed that he was transphobic 15 years ago but isn’t anymore,

Would anyone believe him if he said he was circumcised 15 years ago but isn’t anymore?

Or, as posed by a commenter to the piece:

If the terms “shemale” or “freaky tranny porn” came out of the mouths of someone like Michelle Bachman, the entire gay internet would be up in arms, writing petitions and arming the villagers with torches. Why should Savage get a pass?

Because what gays want, gays get – and gays like Dan Savage want to be able to wear the veneer of ‘ally’ in order to make money off of trans people while  either not giving a shit about whether we live or die or actually working against us via whatever is dripping from the other side(s) of their mouths.

Sometimes they construct entire organizations to mask what they’re actually doing (I won’t mention HRC or NGLTF by name.)

Sometimes they just spew and do a perpetual happy dance on top of all of the money that they make; to some degree that can apply to HRC as well, but here its a bit more applicable to the Dan Savages and the Israel Lunas of the gay snoooki-sphere.

Yes, as the elitist institutional ramdodding of gay marriage wants by, through and past the economic needs of working class GLBs and all trans people has shown, what gays want, gays get – and gays like Dan Savage want to be able to wear the veneer of ‘ally’ in order to make money off of trans people while  either not giving a shit about whether we live or die or actually working against us via whatever is dripping from the other side(s) of their mouths. 

I leave it to the reader be the judge as to which of those applies to an overly-privileged, out-of-touch-with-the-reality-of-people-who-don’t-live-in-places-like-Seattle gay man who has made hay with a seemingly-perpetual publicity-boner about ‘it gets better’ but doesn’t know or doesn’t care thtat legitimizing terms like “shemale” only makes things worse for trans people.

20 Responses to What Part of ‘Dan Savage is a Transphobic Turd’ Needs Further Explanation?

  1. I shall refrain adding directly to your excellent commentary, Katrina…

    However, as a comedienne myself, I would like to offer a suggestion for those staging the next “glitter bomb” event?

    Keeping in mind that Dan-O-Savage used the name Helvetica Bold when engaging in gay, gay, gay DRAG exhibitionism…

    And that True Naming is a critical exercise in the Quest for Identity..

    The Glitter Bombers should shout Dan’s True Name as the glitter flies…

    “Comic Sans!” – TRANSPHOBE!
    “Comic Sans!” – TRANSPHOBE!
    “Comic Sans!” – TRANSPHOBE!

    This may well pass straight over the heads of those not familiar with the status of the Comic Sans font (among typographers and graphic designers) as the most-loathed font in all creation… but Danny-Boy will be getting the message, loud and clear:

    We think you’re a joke… and not in a good way.

    And perhaps this appellation might catch on ?-)

    Sincerely,
    B.A.R.BLAYK, truly named

    PS: And thanks again for keeping at it, Katrina!

    • Katrina Rose says:

      I’ll keep your suggestion in mind – but for some reason ‘Helvetica Dolt’, despite the fact that its an imaginary font, seems even more appropriate.

      • O Katrina, I should have known better than to place a proposal such as this before a seasoned attorney accustomed to reasoned argument as opposed to the motley badinage favored by obsolescing systems programmers …

        Here, perhaps, is a link to a web page which might persuade you of my case? I present in evidence, Exhibit A:

        You’re a COMIC SANS CRIMINAL but we’re here to help you

        Many other discussions are available on the web supporting this deep and profound identity between Dan Savage and his True Font of Wisdom – “Comic Sans”, which he applies wantonly whenever and wherever the subject of “sex” is involved…

        … which IMIO is pretty much everywhere species above the level of bacteria thrive… amirite ?-)

        thanks!
        – bonze blayk

      • Katrina Rose says:

        Okay,,,

        I defer to you on this 🙂

  2. Granlione says:

    Glitter is nice and all but since he seems to just shrug it off I think a little improvisation would be better… maybe canister of soot? or something that can’t be shrugged off

  3. KayJayWhy says:

    The answer to the title of your post is “phobic.” There’s a big difference between someone using a word you don’t like and someone having a phobia (let alone not caring whether a person lives or dies).

    • Katrina Rose says:

      The answer to the title of your post is “phobic.”

      I hereby apologize to excrement of all varieties everywhere (though, to be fair, I think Savage made the initial linkage between excrement and himself via his definition of “santorum.”)

      There’s a big difference between someone using a word you don’t like and someone having a phobia (let alone not caring whether a person lives or dies).

      In the abstract.

      There’s a big difference between an assistant coach alleging that he saw a former assistant coach raping a 10-year-old boy and that allegation being true – but the allegation and known facts go a long way.

      Oh…

      And if the former assistant coach admits that he was a child rapist fifteen years ago, in every venue other than the criminal courtroom, the onus is on him to prove that the recent allegations are false.

      Savage, who – via ‘it gets better’ – must be presumed to know the effect of language that those on the short end of such language view as abusive, admits to having been a transphobe in the past and continues to use phobic language himself for fun and profit (all, of course, in addition to either not knowing or not giving a shit about how trans people do not benefit from the DADT repeal.) The onus is on him to conclusively prove that he is not a transphobe. Not only does he not prove that he isn’t; more often than not when he opens his mouth on the subject of trans-anything, he demonstrates that he is.

      I hope you don’t get paid per convincing argument.

      If so, you’re going to owe money.

      • KayJayWhy says:

        No, I’d say it’s a concrete difference. I realize that in progressive-blogger circles, the suffix “phobic” has little, if anything, to do with actual phobias, but the implication is that the person in question has a deep, personal fear or hatred of a class of people. A report full of contextless phrases allegedly said by the person are not evidence of such.

        I’ve been reading, watching, and listening to most of Dan Savage’s public output for well over a decade and I’ve never gotten the impression that he has any kind of transphobia. Quite the opposite, in fact. (I’ve also never heard him say he was transphobic 15 years ago, though it’s possible I missed it). For the last six or so years, I’ve encountered the occasional charge of transphobia against him, usually in a blog post full of links to other blog posts. Every time I click through to the sources, I find someone misreading a statement, stripping a phrase of its nuance, or complaining about the use of a particular word. Same thing with the accusations of racism. I find the accusations of biphobia (still not the word I would use) a little more legitimate, at least where some older columns are concerned. And Savage’s former attitudes about fatness have, in my opinion, been about as bad as his detractors claimed and continue to be something of a problem. But Savage’s basic thesis has consistently been that everyone has a right to be who they are and not be discriminated against because of it. His column, podcast, appearances, and projects have done a lot to help normalize things that people used to be afraid or ashamed of, increase awareness of sexual minorities (including trans people), and bring acceptance of queer kids into the mainstream. To forget about all of that and harp on his occasional carelessness with words is to miss the forest for the trees.

    • friday jones says:

      OMFG, is it the old “he can’t be transphobic, because he’s not afraid, he’s repulsed” canard? I think I have a bingo!

  4. Victor says:

    Another day, another act of violent rage by unhinged trans activist thugs.
    BTW, the comment from Granlione is clear advocacy of aggravated battery and I am taking a screenshot of this page. If it stays up, we will know that Katrina Rose has made a conscious decision to permit it.

    Shouldn’t you folks start an enemies list a la Richard Nixon? I mean, find the literate one among you and have him or her or him/her start writing down all the evil people who have to be attacked. Let’s see, there’s Savage, and Diego Luna and David Letterman and some trans activist named Keisling who blinked her eyes or exhaled in the wrong way, and there’s the Great Satan Ron Gold who had the temerity to express his opinion on a website, and there’s the poor fools at Bilerico who stupidly tried to win trans activist approval through appeasement. There’s a lesbian activist who wrote an anti-trans letter to the editor 40 years ago. And there’s Barney Frank and EQMD and HRC and ESPA. Please feel free to add. Smoldering hatred is what you all do best.

    • Glittering expresses “violent rage”?

      You know… the thing that really gets to me about transphobes like Savage who are criticized, admittedly, often in very harsh terms, for expressing their fear and hatred of “The Other”, promoting the seething hatred of transfolk by people who all-too-often

      KILL US DEAD

      … is that they’re such a bunch of fucking wimps. You say “Boo!” to these people, it’s like their inner fear, provoked by the (moronic) killer tranny meme, just takes over and has them posting ridiculous similes like “Before I get slaughtered by the trans activist community (again)…” – that’s Alice Dreger there, spreading trans-fear-n-hate in the pages of The Stranger as Dan’s fave-rave “expert” on… transsexuality.

      Well, it’s a specialty for her, y’know? She’s not much use as an “historian”, nor a “bioethicist”, and the intersexed community she once helped now mostly loathes her… so how better to spend her time than glorifying the pathetic “sexologist” J. Michael Bailey and his cohort… (surely the man with the biggest ass in Chicago – or is that his face – I mean, get real! He foists live “fucksaw” porn on his students! ?-) … as some kind of latter-day “Galileo” suffering the slings and arrows of “oppression” by, you guessed it! – trans women!

      Wow. Getting criticized by somebody… or like, having glitter thrown at you! O TRAUMA O MORES – “You could put out somebody’s eye with that!” (LOL)

      Katrina labels the policies advocated by these folks as “trans-exterminationism”. There is a long history here, going back to the radfem backlash against trans women and crazed theories “explaining” transsexualism in “The Transsexual Empire” as a conspiracy which rapes all women. Just by, like, existing, y’know?

      With every breath I take,
      Every move I make
      Some poor gal is gettin’ raped…
      Hey! Won’t somebody kill me already?
      I’m just a walkin’, talkin’, atrocity!

      – spontanopoesy courtesy of bonze blayk

      Unfortunately, Katrina is right.

      Sincerely,
      – bonze blayk
      – on behalf of the PALEO-GOTHIC TRANS-GEEK LIBERATION FRONT

      PS: I betcha 10 to 1 Katrina doesn’t delete your moronic post, unlike the radfem blog where trans-exterminationism is freely vented by radfem “lawyers” (?)… and none but radfem lesbians are allowed to post? Yeah. So… prepare for slings and arrows and “Oh my! ‘Criticism’? It is so unwarranted! My heart pounds within my chest, was that a Tranny Assassin at my door?!”

      LOL. I was in a punk rock band Back In The Day… and when people threw stuff at you, well, that’s just the price you pay to play!

      You folks crack me up.

      PPS: “Smoldering hatred is what you all do best…” sorry, no, actually it’s computers that “autogynephiles” like me do best… Designated Sexpert Ray Blanchard thinks so, at least, and Ray is pretty much appalled by it all! 😉

    • Katrina Rose says:

      Another day, another act of violent rage by unhinged trans activist thugs.

      Another day, another comment that sounds like it comes from a Hannitized radfemshlub (or is that actually redundant?).

      BTW, the comment from Granlione is clear advocacy of aggravated battery

      Citation to a source of law in any relevant jurisdiction that says (1) glitterbombing itself is not battery (aggravated or otherwise); and/or (2) differentiation between glitter and soot would have any effect on any legal liability for such an act; and/or (3) that the wording of that comment is, as a matter of law, not satire?

      (While you’re at it, how about a citation to Maryland state statutory law and/or judicial decision interpreting Maryland state statutory law that specifically says that any trans people are included under Maryland’s definition of “sex” in anti-discrimination law? I mean…it really does seem as if I’m conversing with a certain attorney who is incapable of producing such a citation no matter how many times it is requested.)

      and I am taking a screenshot of this page.

      So am I.

      Oh…

      I’ll take two just for good measure.

      If it stays up, we will know that Katrina Rose has made a conscious decision to permit it.

      Or maybe the thinking people of the world will just ponder the possibility of it being you (or someone with some connection to you) who put that comment up in the first instance.

      Nice try.

      • Victor says:

        Eh? First you called me a Sean Hannity-type conservative. Now I’m a radfem. And possibly a lawyer with whom you have been conversing. Wrong, wrong, and wrong. Not a conservative, a radfem or a lawyer. Just a person who objects to the foolish screeds that fill this blog. There really is a need for a blog about ENDA. It is important legislation and has enough complexities that it warrants its own blog. But this blog has very little to do with ENDA and everything to do with your unceasing rage against the world, and gay people in particular. If I were a lawyer, I’d say that this blog should be “Exhibit A” in the case against “LGBT”.

        As far as the above, why don’t you get your own citations. Inasmuch as you are unencumbered by either meaningful employment or a relationship, you should have plenty of time to google. But in any event, those citations have nothing to do with my comment. The comment above is advocating violence and you have made the conscious decision to leave it up. You think that it is legitimate for someone to advocate that Savage be targeted with a cannister of soot, so that he can be exposed to bacteria, viruses and particulate matter, so that he can be robbed of his dignity in public settings, and so that he can be forced to live in fear of an attack at his speaking engagements. That is low grade terrorism.

    • friday jones says:

      Hi Cathy Brennan!

  5. laughriotgirl says:

    Oh a trans woman should dare to have the gall to mention over a decade of unapologetic anti-trans commentary by a gay man.

    You know kat, trans women have but 3 uses to the LGB:

    1) Lip-syncing for tips in a bar
    2) Padding statistics on violence and unemployment so LGb-only laws get passed/ getting cut from laws go LGB-only laws get passed
    3) Keeping quiet

    Pick one, that’s all you get.

  6. laughriotgirl says:

    @Victor

    “If I were a lawyer, I’d say that this blog should be “Exhibit A” in the case against “LGBT”.”

    Considering that much of this blog documents verified sidelining/working against/ignoring trans issues by LGb groups and individuals, I think “Exhibit A” has already been presented, and it’s not the trans folks…

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