The Transgender Debate Trope



Content Notice: Transphobia, angry invocation of t-word slur

Most of the time, when implementation of explicit rights for trans folk is “debated,” my face looks something like this:

Very sincere


This is because, like any issue that undergoes debate, there is often an opposing side that the media feels has to be represented to see the “full picture.” And while that is its own kind of stress when someone is representing patently falsifiable claims, it takes a higher toll on you when you are the topic of debate. The opponent isn’t merely representing misinformation, they are representing ideas and policies that actively antagonize your safety, and the whole “we have to represent the whole debate” neutrality business starts to feel a bit callous because the hosts are pretending there is any merit to Buddy McDoucheFace’s arguments. You’re supposed to sit silently while Buddy calls you a predator for being who you are. You’re supposed to give him his turn to speak. You’re supposed to be civil, when Buddy basically called for you to be institutionalized against your will, imprisoned for crimes you never committed. Buddy invokes Holocaust imagery to describe the way you should be treated, and you’re supposed to smile and remain calm in the presence of someone who just admitted they’d murder you in different circumstances.

Enter the Transgender Debate Trope.

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Alberta MLA suspended over Facebook comment


On issue #1,232,191 of “politician puts foot in mouth:” Wildrose MLA Derek Fildebrandt was suspended from his party caucus after approving a comment which stated, “Mr Wynne or whatever the hell she identifies as.”

Earlier Friday, a person commented on Fildebrandt’s official Facebook page, congratulating the MLA on telling the truth about “Mr Wynne or whatever the hell she identifies as,” referring to Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, who is openly gay.

In a reply to the post, Fildebrandt wrote: “Proud to have constituents like you!”

Hours later, Fildebrandt took to Twitter to apologize for the comment, saying he felt terrible at the thought that anyone in the LGBTQ community thought he shared the original commenter’s views. He said after re-reading the original comment, he “entirely misread it. 100 per cent against my views.”

Fildebrandt goes on to say he missed the “Mr” portion of the comment, a deliberate dig not only at Ontario’s openly gay Premier, but also the trans affirming policies being debated at the federal level. Even if this is true, the latter portion of the comment, “whatever the hell she identifies as,” is a little harder to miss.

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