I can’t believe I’m actually having to write this, but judging by all the blocks I’ve got on Twitter for merely expressing how its wrong to hit people, I think I probably should. First, some context.
At an anti-trans talk hosted by ‘TERFs’ and featuring anti-trans speakers, a woman was attacked by pro-trans people. We do not know if the attackers were trans, we do not know if they were AntiFa and we do not know who they were, other than that they came from the pro-trans side of the argument. There are many rumours but nothing is confirmed.
The woman, Maria, approached the pro-trans side to film faces and intimidate people. Anti-trans people, especially in the madfem sphere, have a penchant for doxxing trans people and trying to get them fired from their jobs etc. So yes I absolutely do count what she was doing as an intimidation tactic. However, when Maria was a few steps away – clearly annoyed at said intimidation tactic a pro-trans person ran out of the crowd and tried to snatch her camera. Maria got in closer to try and film the face of the person who did it, at which point cardboard goes up to block her view, some slaps are thrown to Maria’s arm and then a scuffle breaks out.
The scuffle breaks out because a young woman has grabbed hold of Maria’s camera – which is apparently attached to Maria’s wrist via wrist strap. The scuffle continues, and moves across the square a little until you can very clearly hear the camera being thrown to the ground and bouncing off with a lot of momentum. This was very clearly intentional property damage. At this point Maria has now got the young woman in a very loose headlock, its barely even a headlock looking at it – though this image is the one being circulated amongst trans people, ignoring everything which led up to that point.
The scuffle ends with the original instigator of the incident, the person who originally tried to snatch Maria’s camera, running in from off screen to hit Maria repeatedly. In the hurdle of people Maria is pushed to the ground, her grip on the young woman released, and the two pro-trans people who started this incident run away into the distance, followed by their apathetic friend who schleps after them.
This is a faithful and accurate telling of the events – anyone telling you otherwise is either misinformed or lying to you intentionally. Send them this post and correct them. This doesn’t mean all trans people or people who support our rights are inherently violent, it just means two assholes did some asshole stuff and they should be called assholes for doing it.
So is it okay to punch a TERF?
No. No it isn’t. When you punch someone, much like with the Richard Spencer punches that I commented on – you create sympathy for the devil. Thousands of people are going to see those clips and think “fuck, this is awful, how do I help this lady?” The world has largely started turning against AntiFa because of their use of violence for political gain, and they will turn against trans people too if they see many of us are advocating for violence. We can’t allow that to happen, we need to condemn the violence and support those who are victimised by anyone – for any reason.
and trust me… I get it… when I started Twitter & blogging just over a year ago, I encountered the TERFs pretty early on. I had about 30 followers and hundreds of them were flooding my notifications because I had the audacity to say I was a woman. That isn’t the worst of it though… they genuinely made me feel really bad about myself. They kept sending me links and information and stuff, concern-trolling me into self doubt, and it worked. I really did feel pretty awful, I felt like maybe they were right, maybe I am violence, maybe I am sick, maybe I am disgusting – they had all this evidence which proved it right? So how could they be wrong?
This is gaslighting 101, and it can have some pretty awful effects on the old brains. In extreme and prolonged cases it can cause complex post traumatic stress disorder – which differs from PTSD in that PTSD is often about a singular event or period of trauma, rather than constant trauma over a longer period of time. I’m not saying I have C-PTSD, but I have a few mental issues from trauma already so it wasn’t difficult for me to start feeling a little messed up inside because of what they were saying and a common symptom of C-PTSD is rage turned outwards – the destruction of property or use of violence.
I got banned a lot when I had my first few accounts. My current account is account number 7. The others were partly banned due to mass reporting by TERFs, but they were also banned as part of my rage turned outwards, I was a total bitch. I called them all morons and idiots and retards and whatever the heck else I could think of. It was spicy as heck. It was also very much the wrong way to go about solving these problems, I’ve learnt that over this year and its something I want to try and empower other trans people with. Violence isn’t the answer, knowledge is power here.
See, the studies etc that they posted me were all horribly misrepresented, or just outright lies from anti-trans bloggers. The most famous of which I’ve ran into repeatedly is the Karolinska Institute study, which apparently claims we’re all violent and suicidal because transition is a terrible way to deal with dysphoria. That’s not at all what the study actually says, but they post it all the time anyway – even despite the author of it coming out to say “hey wait a minute, you’re being idiots. stop.”
The only way I managed to overcome their bullshit was to read more about it, to learn more about my own condition and form real counter arguments to their crap. I can’t be gaslit by people if I’m aware of them going to the attic to flicker the lights (obscure reference to the origins of the term gaslighting dw about it.) Much like an illusion or magic trick it becomes slightly less cool when you know how its done, and it can’t give you that same effect any more. This is how we beat the TERFs, not with physical violence, but with our minds – the very thing they want to deny us. Trans people need to read more, they need to talk to other trans people and share counter-arguments to TERF bullshit, this is what a trans community should be, and I hope that I’m curating that kind of environment with my blog and Twitter feed – and YouTube channel soon.
As always, my DMs are open, so if you’re being harassed and abused by TERFs and want someone to come help you counter their arguments I’ll be around. At the very least I can send you studies and resources which counter their claims. And I’m possibly going to add a page on here with some of the sources I commonly cite as counterpoints to their arguments so you can access them quickly and easily yourself.