Waymon Hudson

The Gender Anarchist

Filed By Waymon Hudson | February 04, 2008 1:01 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: gender roles

Many of you know my interest in writing about and discussing gender issues. It seems I have been labeled by some as a “gender anarchist”, looking to tear down old paradigms of “man and woman” to make myself more comfortable.

And they are right.

As someone who straddles the traditional line of gender, I have a vested interest in tearing down the old binary notions of gender roles. I think we all do.

Now before everyone starts sharpening their comment swords, hear me out. Many of us, whether we are LGB or T, are not what society would view as normative in our gender roles.

For those of you that do “fit in” and are comfortable in a binary system, that’s great. But the vast majority of LGBT people (and those outside of our community, for that matter) don’t fall squarely into two categories. We all live somewhere in between.

Part of the reason I like to write about gender identity and expression is because it is something I have struggled with my entire life. Before I ever knew what “gay” was as a child, I knew I was different. I was the town sissy, playing with dolls and taking dance classes. Being a traditional “boy” was never an option for me. I was just different and got many a beating for it.

Maybe that’s why I want to broaden society’s idea of how men and women “should” act. It is completely self-serving. I want to make my life better.

I think many of us can relate to never having an option to fit into someone else’s idea of gender. And why should we be forced into those roles? Why should we change who we are to fit someone else’s idea and make them more comfortable?

Many of the “traditional” ideas of gender roles are unattainable and unrealistic to begin with. Forcing those of us who are different (and I think we far outweigh those who do fit squarely into the binary system) to try and “pass” is just as unrealistic.

So, yes, I am a gender anarchist and proud of it. I think we need to make life better for everyone by accepting and celebrating what makes us unique as individuals, not force everyone to assimilate into two completely oppressive gender roles.

Maybe if we keep up the fight to broaden people’s views on gender, the next little boy in small town that wants to play with his dolls will have it easier.

And, in turn, so will all of us.

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Thanks, Monica. I think the more conversations we have in our own community about these issues, the stronger we will be. Finding and exploring common ground and experience is what makes us a community.

So, yes, I am a gender anarchist and proud of it. I think we need to make life better for everyone by accepting and celebrating what makes us unique as individuals, not force everyone to assimilate into two completely oppressive gender roles.

Do you see a space, maybe, in between actual gender anarchy and a rigid binary? Do people's voluntary participation in the binary mean that they're responsible for it, in your opinion?

I used the term "gender anarchist" as a response to being called that a few times in some of my other postings. Kind of a sarcastic tip to the hat, if you will. I chose to take the term from the pejorative that it was meant to be and turn it into something positive.

My whole point is that we all exist somewhere “in between”. And if someone wants to call me an anarchist because of it, then so be it. I’ll reclaim it and wear it proudly.

I think Joyce said it best:

I am not a gender anarchist so much as I am simply wanting space to exist in this society. And I also want there to be space for folks like myself, that don't identify as part of the binary.

And I don’t think that someone that participates in the binary is wrong at all. They are simply part of a larger gender spectrum. I fall somewhere in the middle, they are somewhere on the ends.

All I’m saying is if you fit in those roles, great. But don’t try and force me, and others like me, to do the same.

Thank you, Waymon.

One of the common straw figures of a couple of overlapping debates - queer rights, trans identity - is that of the "gender deconstructionist", or in your case, the "gender anarchist", who is supposedly bent on destroying Society As We Know It, leaving all the poor normatives wandering around in a daze, wondering what bathroom to use without fear, and whom to screw without revulsion.

It's absurd, of course. All that is called for is the removal of interference in living one's life as it is, rather than as it "must be." People - well, interesting people at any rate, are complicated. Personally, I find that worth celebrating.

I am gender anarchist and a gender liberationist but before you judge me please understand that this way of thinking is a way of including EVERYONE. Life is about SELF realization, not the judgement others. I have posed this question many places on the internet. Thus far it has been beyond the grasp of those who read it.
So I pose it again and I believe that, before we try to categorize humans to fit into boxes, we must define the boxes. So tell me this,
ILLUMINATI: How do YOU define male and female? I am betting you can't.
So, this apparent human need, sprung from the relentlessly insistent left brain, to categorize everything in our field of awareness, based on every criteria possible and then to place these differences into a hierarchy which exalts this characteristic over that one, now
dominates our world-forcing us, lemminglike, into an ocean of our own ignorance. In my humble opinion, it is indeed this penchant for divisive
perception that exalts the individual ego, giving it false dominion by reinforcing all superficial categories of human expression.
No greater awareness of this conundrum exists than within the tortured arena of trangenderism and especially transexualism.
The experience of transcending gender is supremely illustrative in that it holds the potential to reconnect the two primary elemental
aspects of the original self. This issue of identity politics which now holds the world in a
state of perpetual chaos is the supreme illusion that dooms us to eternal bickering and inevitable self-destruction.
I gleefully piss off my fellow transgendered brothers and sisters with the assertion that having crossed that very scary line of gender demarcation, it is incumbent upon us to transcend it.
Some folks get really scared at the implication that identity is a construct in which invest
with all of our being. Diversity is the artful painting on the tabla rasa of the human
spirit. An enlightened culture celebrates diversity. whereas our present global society uses diversity like a weapon of control,
usury, violence and dominance.
So I pose this question in hopes of being
enlightened: In a last ditch effort to steer the distraught ship of fate around the iceberg of our nuclear self destruction, is it possible
for humans of all persuasion to reject superficial identity politics, including Christians, Jews, Muslims, trannies, Democrats,
Republicans, lesbians, Wiccans, Satanists, Pagans, Pantheists, Catholics, Agnostics, men , women,Asians, Caucasions, Hispanics, red, white and blues....and of course Atheists. An apology to those other identies whom I have forgotten to mention. Nothing personal you know.
I n the words of some famous person, no offense to the non-famous people-or
animals...."Why can't we all just get along?"

Thanks for your indulgence,

All that is called for is the removal of interference in living one's life as it is, rather than as it "must be."

I agree, Val. Thanks for summing it up so nicely.

And while I may not be as far along as Sissy in my "gender anarchy" positions, I completely see the point and agree that no two people have the same definition of what is "male" or "female". It's different to everyone. And like you say:

An enlightened culture celebrates diversity. Whereas our present global society uses diversity like a weapon of control, usury, violence and dominance.

By tearing down these rigid gender lines, we can break some of the dominance, ignorance, and violence in our society.

Hooray on behalf of all the sissy boys! :)

Many Post-Ops do not consider themselves as gender variant or transgender being of one sex trapped in the body of another is rather traumatic and stress of living with it all your conscious life is sooner or later unbearable at any price.

Some Post-Ops are gender variant or gender queer. Nobody knows for sure if these gender variant TS are a majority or minority given that over half of the TS who go on to being Post-Op just leave the community and blend into society...

One thing that must be kept in mind is not all TS/HBS are gender variant and one shouldn't assume any label would be apply or be welcome.

Take care