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Up Topic Discussion / TG/TS In the News / Transphobic Book -- Alert
- - By Dianna Date 2003-04-22 21:24
From:
Ms. Lynn Conway
Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

Dear friends,

A major controversy is about to erupt because of the publication of an
incredibly sensationalist, transphobic book by the National Academy Press.

This publication is a media distortion of the very highest order:

Transphobic propaganda has sneaked into and been published by an elite
national institution under the guise of "science". I want to give you a
heads-up about this, so that you can get out in front of it ASAP.

The imprimatur of the National Academy gives J. Michael Bailey's new
book "The Man Who Would be Queen" the apparent stamp of approval of
science. And as we speak it is being adopted in many university
undergraduate psychology courses.

This book is transsexual women's worst nightmare, and its image of
transsexualism casts a dark shadow over the entire transgender
community.

The book portrays transsexual women (whom Bailey calls transsexual men)
as sex maniacs who "change (genital) sex" for exotic sexual reasons.

This book will in time be viewed as very analogous to the Nazi
propaganda films about Jews in WWII. It paints transsexual women as
deviant, bizarre, pitiful figures and never shows the diverse reality of
our true lives.

Bailey goes so far to say that he cannot comprehend someone in a male
body having a female gender identity. And because he cannot comprehend
it, then it cannot be!

Thus he claims that we do not even exist, as we ourselves perceive our
existence. Instead we are merely "transsexual men" who underwent "sex
changes" (i.e., SRS), as if we were a bunch of drag queens who went
terribly wrong somehow. Yes, that's
right: Bailey calls TS women "transsexual men".

Bailey thus goes against the mainstream of modern western thought about
transgenderism and transsexualism, substituting an older "homosexual"
model instead - along with an equally bizarre theory related to
addictive masturbation. In doing this, he stigmatizes and caricatures
not only transsexual women, but also gay men, tainting us all with the
stain of sexual preoccupation and sexual deviancy.

Over the past decade, many TS women have individually tried to interact
with Bailey, to help him understand that the papers he was writing just
didn't seem to describe any of the TS women we know.

He heard about the existence of these women this way. But one after
another he dissed them all as a "pack of lies". After all, all
transsexuals are liars, at least according to Bailey. He just kept
saying that we "didn't exist". And of course none of his colleagues ever
saw us, because we were all in stealth.

As a result, academic psychology - a field of science that is already on
terribly shaky grounds - has allowed itself to be turned into a
Nazi-like propaganda machine - this time directed not against Jewish
people, but against transsexual women.

Fortunately, times have changed. And this time the targets of this
institutional propaganda are going to fight it, and fight with
everything we've got.

The times have changed ,and we aren't all hiding in stealth anymore.
Saying that we "do not exist" isn't going to work for Bailey this time.
He's no longer will be able to hide us ALL from ALL of his colleagues.

See for yourself how visible we are now, both MtF and FtM transsexual
people (Bailey ignores the existence of FtM's) on the web at sites like
these:

http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TSsuccesses/TSsuccesses.html
http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TSsuccesses/TransMen.html

We do exist, and we are living counter-examples to everything Bailey is
saying about us in his lurid, sensationalist, transphobic book. And we
aren't going to take this anymore.

As a result of this publication, the field of psychology now faces an
incredibly powerful challenge to its credibility as a science and an
academic institution. The leadership in that community are going to have
to account for how this book came to be put forward to the Academy as
important "science". And all the psychologists who came forward with
rave reviews supporting this work are going to have to account for their
actions too. How many of them bothered to even think twice before buying
into existing stereotypes when signing off on their "reviews".

If  there is a culprit here, beyond Bailey and his sexologist
colleagues, it is academic psychology, which sanctioned this work as
science and sent it along to the Academy.

I am already hearing prominent psychologists say that "this book makes
me ashamed to be a psychologist". Well they should all be ashamed. Where
were they the past ten years while Bailey was doing and publishing this
awful stuff?

Just think of the damage this book could do if widely adopted as a
"scientific view of transsexualism"?

It will not only horrifically stain the lives of tens of thousands of
transgender and transsexual people, and ruin the chances of thousands of
kids now struggling to come out and seek help for their transitions. And
at a deep and fundamental level stains the image of science itself,
leaving us with nothing but propaganda all around.

To really grasp what is happening here, think of the long-lasting first
impressions that college undergraduate students will get of transsexual
people from this book.

Compare those impressions to the ones of real-life gender transitioners,
such as Danielle, as told by her mother Evelyn in the book "Mom, I Need
to be a Girl":

http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TS/Evelyn/Evelyn.html

Once those first impressions are created, they are lasting ones. Think
of the damage that will be done to yet another generation of trans kids
if Bailey's awful and distorted view of us were to become
institutionalized in academe.

If all those psychology courses wanted to include a small, easily
readable, informative overview of gender change, then they should adopt
Evelyn's book, not Bailey's.

How Bailey's terribly flawed book could have been published by the
National Academy is quite beyond me. And as a duly elected member of the
Academy, you can bet I'm asking some hard questions right now.

To learn more about this controversy, please see the "investigative
report now being constructed and evolved on the
web:

http://ai.eecs.umich.edu/people/conway/TS/LynnsReviewOfBaileysBook.html

Thanks for listening. I really do urge you to get out in front of this
one. We are being killed out here, and this awful book - disguised as
science - is adding fuel to that fire.

Please, please help us on this one.

All the best,

Ms. Lynn Conway
Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
http://www.lynnconway.com
Parent - By jamie Date 2003-04-24 00:26
this administration and all involved with it seem
to be everythingphobic.
gays
us
movie stars
you name it they phob it.
what a wretched example of the times.
tell me.
is religion involved in any way on this one? ? ?
jamie
Parent - - By Dakota Lynn Date 2003-04-25 14:16
You can read this book online free. Please Don't put any Money in this Mans pocket.
http://search.nap.edu/books/0309084180/html/ 
Parent - - By maryannk Date 2003-04-25 14:48
Hi all!

I have been reading the book online and downloaded the PDF version...not to make
Bailey rich but for professional reasons.  I worked in an University setting and have
taken Psychology, Sociology, Gender Studies courses.  In each of these courses,
I come out, sometimes with a baseball bat, other times more subtle.  I am bringing
this book to our Psychologists attention and flushing out the bigots.

What I have read is not science at all!  I read stories like these online, in chat rooms,
at Gender gatherings, in our Gender publications.  The most dangerous approach
Bailey has is the retrograde espousing of Freud's "sex is everything" theories.

Reducing everything to sex...to the dawn of Psychology in the caves! will hurt us
big time!  In the near 70 years since Freud has died, dozens of humane and positive
theories have appeared..especially friendly to us are Rogers and Maslow..humanists

Bailey needs to be shamed, embarassed, and marginalized.  Only the bigots will cheer
him.  and of course...DR. ANN LAWERENCE THINKS THE BOOK IS WONDERFUL.  Talk
about a Femi Nazi!!  The criticism is best to come from  inside his own field.  They
will discount us and our feelings.

Heavy hitters needed now!

Maryann  K.
Parent - - By Dianna Date 2003-04-25 15:18

> DR. ANN LAWERENCE THINKS THE BOOK IS WONDERFUL.  Talk  about a Femi Nazi!!


From Ann's Web site:
(And remembering that Ann's Doctoral credentials are that she is an anesthesiologist)

++++
A few prominent "transsexual fundamentalists" hate this book and its heretical ideas, and have been busy misrepresenting its content on the Internet. [...] For the record, I would like to reassure these transsexual fundamentalists--many of whom  I know and admire--that I identify as a woman, and consider myself a "real" transsexual. I also respect their identities as women, and consider them real transsexuals, too.
++++

Gag.
One of the bigger problems within the TG/TS community comes from people who feel that they are somehow the only "real" transsexual;  they pride themselves in telling others why they themselves are "Real" and nearly everyone else is somehow "wrong" -- i.e., "not real".
This is all analogous to people who hold the position, for example, that some people are not "black enough" to be really considered "black", or not "jew" enough to be really considered to be "jewish", etc.

And what the hell is a "transsexual fundamentalist"?
Gawd -- are there not yet enough labels in this community?
Labels are for clothing -- labels de-humanize people, and allow people to be discounted and discarded.

I believe that Ann's massive male ego and male approach to life make her somewhat  dangerous to the TG/TS community.
This and her obsessive need to photograph post-op TG/TS breasts and vaginas for display which borders on pornography...
...coupled with her need to say there is only one "right way" to be TG/TS or female.

Maybe this is one big reason why cheating on - failing to utilize -- the one year Real Life Test (as Ann did, and openly brags about) can bring disasterous results...
It can result in a person who has a female body, but no idea about how to be a woman in the world among women.
If you have to display your genitals to "prove" you are a woman, you are not really a woman.

"Real" women help each other -- they do not crow and brag about their personal accomplishments.
Parent - By sarah150 Date 2003-04-25 16:11
Hi all,

I have read some and shall be reading the rest of it too , but perhaps what is needed is a book in response to this ASSHOLE ( excusse my language).  Like on the web there are personal stories, why not have these in a book which could have the potential to be sold world-wide as well as the academics too.  I have even thought of a title and it goes like this

"What J. Michael Bailey Does'nt know about ordinary people"

sarah xxxxxxx
Parent - By Clara Date 2003-04-26 19:03
hello dianna.....

you know, this fellow bailey reminds me of sadam hussein..ALL TALK AND NO ACTION....before you know it he'll either be MIA(missing in action) or doing something else....the lad just needs attention right now and hopefully there  are not too many of us in our community to give him the time of day.....

as far as I'm concerned this all boils down to one thing and one thing only......UNITED WE STAND/DIVIDED WE FALL......if we start panicking shit will hit the fan.....if we continue to go about our business and keep electrolysists, therapists, doctors, makeup artists, wardrobe consultants, hotels(conventions), shopping(retailers), etc in business, as well as continue to communicate and share ideas and enhance/support each other then everything will be just fine if not better...

for all of you who have studied world history through your lives you'll be quick to point out that all empires throughout history ceased to exist mainly due to internal turmoils.....

also, why are we even mentioning anne lawrence???...she has been a non-factor since day one.....

stay focused everybody!!!!

much love, Clara
Up Topic Discussion / TG/TS In the News / Transphobic Book -- Alert

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