How many times have you heard this?
If you haven’t, you’ve probably heard it about Lady GaGa. Or, hell - a whole host of other female pop icons.
It’s a common recurring joke - and, one that is rehashed quite often for good reason: It gets laughs effectively and consistently. It gets to the point that if someone even mentions Ann Coulter to me I can pretty much do a mental countdown on how long it takes them to make a “joke” accusing her of being trans.
People tell these jokes to me cheerfully, expecting I’ll get as big of a kick out of them as the rest of their friends. And it utterly astounds me that no one else seems to completely miss why this is so disgusting. “But, why Zoey?” You might be asking. “It’s just joking around!” or, “You’re being too sensitive.”
Well, let’s pull back for a moment and deconstruct this:
The problem here is the joke in itself is literally, “this person is transgender”. That’s it. That’s the whole joke. That’s what’s supposed to be so funny. And it utterly amazes me that it still seems to constantly fly past everyone and, more to the point, is considered a completely acceptable way to “insult” someone.
Because it literally comes down to - and directly states - the fact that, by and large by society, us trans women are considered to be inherently shameful in our existence. So shameful in fact, that the complexity of a joke made about us needs to have no greater depth than simply mentioning the fact that we exist.
This - people, this is transphobia. This is transmisogyny. This is cissexism. When you encapsulate someone in their incidental minority status and then proclaim it to be so vile that it’s considered inhuman enough to be used as an insult to hurl at someone you decide is worse enough for it.
This is what needs to stop. It’s not an issue of being “too PC” or “just joking around” It’s an issue of the fact that the person who I happen to be - and can’t change - is still a completely acceptable vehicle of vilification, let alone ridicule.
Let me be clear here, Ann Coulter is an incredibly hateful person and she absolutely deserves your ire. But accusing her - or anyone you dislike - of being trans AS an insult is not only utterly disgusting but completely ludicrous.
Because - and I’m gonna introduce a radical concept here - There is nothing shameful about being trans.