Author Topic: Gender Culture  (Read 574 times)

Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2017, 11:54:27 pm »
That's fair.  When I first read your post and I pictured a moment like that, I kind of agreed it would be awkward.

But upon reflecting on it more, I don't see why it should be other than the fact that it's something not familiar. 

Is it awkward to change in front of a lesbian woman who very well may be looking at me sexually?  Not at all but probably because I've been around lesbians all my life.

Maybe it's not about whether someone might be looking at you in a sexual sense.

Another thing, other than the showers at my local pool, every gym I've ever visited has changing rooms

That hasn't been my experience, but if establishments are updating their changing areas to provide more privacy, I think that would do a lot to put their patrons' discomfort to rest.

so this wouldn't be about anyone seeing me naked, it would be about ME seeing a woman with a pe-nis (can't believe that's too vulgar for the forum) who is comfortable enough with her body to get naked in an open room. 

Then the onus is therefore on me, not on them. 

Ok, hang on... many people now accept the premise that some people are so fragile that we should avoid using the word "rayp" (I can't believe the forum censors that one too...), and do "jazz hands" or snap our fingers instead of clapping.  And yet we're also now proposing that women who hold to long-standing social norms regarding intersex group nudity have to just shut up and deal with it?

Do you have to be special in some way before your feelings merit some consideration?

And we're now at a point where some people support providing women-only swimming times at public pools, out of respect for Muslim customs. And yet the mood now appears that women ought to share not just the swimming pool but also their showers and changing room with biologically male patrons.  Don't you think there's a bit of a contradiction there?

If a Muslim member of BodyBlitz complained that having to change in the presence of a biologically male person was against her religious beliefs, would people support some sort of "reasonable accommodation" for her?

And, if so, then why shouldn't there likewise be an effort to make reasonable accommodation for people who are just not comfortable changing in front of some unfamiliar person with their dong hanging out?

I think this decision is based on the same notion as the bathroom rules where they're not worried about 'real' transgender women, but creepy straight men in wigs trying to be peeping toms. 

If there's a male you don't know in the locker room, what's your first reaction?

In order to not discriminate and have to leave it up to judgement, it's a systematic rule.

I can see the other side but I think it's discriminatory at the same time.  Personally I don't agree.

Discrimination isn't necessarily illegal.  The very existence of female-only facilities is an example of a situation where it was decided that there was a reasonable justification for discrimination. 

Another fair reason for discrimination might be to preserve the patrons' sense of security and privacy.

Another fair reason for discrimination might be to avoid economic hardship-- which might be the result if patrons stop coming to the club because they find the locker-room situation to be uncomfortable or upsetting.

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Offline MH

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2017, 05:24:36 am »
I will call a ie: trans woman as "she" because they are female in gender, but to pretend they are female in all aspects including 100% in biology I will not, because it's contrary to science and the facts.  I know that many trans people want to desperately be of the opposite biological sex as they were born, hence all of the medical procedures they have, but this isn't possible, at least not fully.

I don't think anybody believes that trans people are fully biologically changed to the other sex, that's not even in question.  The debate is really about rights and nothing more.  The sports question will be decided by those governing bodies.

 

Offline MH

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2017, 05:42:43 am »

 If a Muslim member of BodyBlitz complained that having to change in the presence of a biologically male person was against her religious beliefs, would people support some sort of "reasonable accommodation" for her?
 

Of course that will have to play out.  To my mind, religion's archaic and unreasonable segregation of men and women is constitutionally protected so I expect what they denote to be a man and women will also be protected. 

We found ways to accommodate different cultures and to broker co-existence in the days before electronic media so we should be able to today even if the ignorant voices - previously ignored by big media - are part of the dialogue.  Accommodation means they also have to be accommodated, and ignorant does not mean conservative by the way.

Offline dia

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2017, 11:01:59 am »
It would be interesting to know somebody who is trans, to learn from their perspective.

I've known 2 well enough to talk to beyond "hi, how are you".  Both were male-to-female, one was attracted to women and the other was attracted to men.  One changed later in life, after serving in the military and the other changed in her late teens/early 20s.

The most difficult part was the acceptance.  For the older woman, she had to accept herself first - military duty was at least partly an attempt to prove her maleness, a desire to conform in a very obvious way.  Once she'd made the change, she was able to find partners among other lesbians, although at the time I knew her, she wasn't with anyone. 

The other, because she was that much younger, found self-acceptance easier in part because there was more awareness generally and her parents supported her.  But what was extremely difficult for her was acceptance from men once they found out she'd once been male.

For them both, belonging and acceptance within society was important, as it is for most humans.  I think people who generally fall in with the norms of society don't quite get how much of a drive it is for humans to conform; for them, it is effortless and natural to fit in and they seek ways to differentiate themselves in some small way and congratulate themselves on being unique.   For those who really are very, very different it's a real challenge to admit and pursue their own true identity puts them at odds with 99% of the group and that's a very difficult thing to do.  That's why it's so laughable when someone says "Oh, teenagers are just making a choice to be gay/trans, to follow a trend - they're just looking for attention", while kids commit suicide because they feel so unacceptable because of their difference. 


“Neither a man nor a crowd nor a nation can be trusted to act humanely or to think sanely under the influence of a great fear.”
Bertrand Russell, Unpopular Essays

Offline Moonlight Graham

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2017, 07:07:38 pm »

I don't think anybody believes that trans people are fully biologically changed to the other sex, that's not even in question.  The debate is really about rights and nothing more.  The sports question will be decided by those governing bodies.

That's probably true yes.
Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.

Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2017, 09:49:16 pm »
I don't think anybody believes that trans people are fully biologically changed to the other sex, that's not even in question.  The debate is really about rights and nothing more.  The sports question will be decided by those governing bodies.

I competed in a number of sports, team and individual. If I had been told I was expected to face a biologically male opponent in a judo competition, I'd have quit in protest rather than participate in a farce like that.

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Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2017, 10:20:44 pm »
Regarding BodyBlitz...


If this was an issue that all their patrons were comfortable with, there wouldn't be an issue. We wouldn't be talking about it. BodyBlitz wouldn't be struggling to create a policy to deal with this issue.  There would be no need of a policy to deal with this issue if all the women there were okay with this.

The one-sided InsideToronto article Michael posted makes it sound like everybody wants trans women in the club and BodyBlitz is being a villain because they're hateful.

Well, BodyBlitz is a business and they're not out to fuck with people just because they're mean. If they're taking this position, it's because they're encountering pushback from patrons who are unhappy with being nude in the presence of biologically male people.  Despite what the InsideToronto article might make it sound like, there isn't a unanimous opinion on this, and if InsideToronto couldn't find someone to state the other side it's either because they didn't want to or because nobody wanted to go on-record opposing trans access because they're afraid of being tarred with the same brush that BodyBlitz is.


I would love to be able to say that I would be completely chill with the situation and have no issue at all sharing showers and change facilities with people with dongs.  But that wouldn't be true.  The truth is, I'd find it unsettling and stressful and have serious hesitation about returning in the future.

I wouldn't raise a ruckus or tell off the management... I'd just stop going.   Not from a desire to make anybody feel excluded, not from an intent to deny a trans person the chance to feel like just one of the girls.   Only because my own discomfort with that situation would outweigh my goodwill toward a stranger.

If being able to change in the same facilities as other women will help trans women feel accepted, then that's great. But I'm not going to participate in helping provide that experience. I'm ok with the pronouns, I'm ok with them being in the stall next to me in the washroom... but I don't think I could get past being in a situation where there are dongs out. For me there's a limit.

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Offline MH

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2017, 06:14:52 am »
Sure, but you are missing the point that the government doesn't allow your tastes to dictate policy for a 'public' business, or policy in general.  People can be uncomfortable with public toplessness, or women attending their golf club, or Jews or blacks attending their restaurant.  In the 1960s, the US decided to enforce a national morality on people.  Of course you have a right to not go.

Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #23 on: June 15, 2017, 02:04:21 am »
Sure, but you are missing the point that the government doesn't allow your tastes to dictate policy for a 'public' business, or policy in general.  People can be uncomfortable with public toplessness, or women attending their golf club, or Jews or blacks attending their restaurant.  In the 1960s, the US decided to enforce a national morality on people.  Of course you have a right to not go.

No, I completely understand that point.  But government can't simply wave a magic wand and change people's attitudes.

As you say, people have a right to not go. And as I said earlier, I believe a significant number of women will exercise that option if they are uncomfortable with the outcome of this.  I believe this is exactly the reason for BodyBlitz's reluctance to get on board with the penis.

If women are told they must share locker room and shower facilities with people with penises, many will take their business to establishments where they are provided more privacy-- individual shower stalls and private changing cubicles, perhaps.  If women are told that this clothing-optional space must admit customers with penises who identify as female, then they may rethink whether they want to belong to a clothing-optional space at all.

That might have an effect on whether BodyBlitz remains a commercially viable operation, or it might not.

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Offline MH

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #24 on: June 15, 2017, 05:09:57 am »
No, I completely understand that point.  But government can't simply wave a magic wand and change people's attitudes.

As you say, people have a right to not go. And as I said earlier, I believe a significant number of women will exercise that option if they are uncomfortable with the outcome of this.  I believe this is exactly the reason for BodyBlitz's reluctance to get on board with the penis.


Ok, so you get the point.  And it seems like people will have to take their distaste for this home.


Quote
If women are told they must share locker room and shower facilities with people with penises, many will take their business to establishments where they are provided more privacy-- individual shower stalls and private changing cubicles, perhaps.  If women are told that this clothing-optional space must admit customers with penises who identify as female, then they may rethink whether they want to belong to a clothing-optional space at all.

That might have an effect on whether BodyBlitz remains a commercially viable operation, or it might not.

 

Full male-female nudity in public is coming, in the long run.  Businesses don't look at the long term, and in this case it doesn't make sense to.  They can easily amend their policy to eliminate nudity and create private spaces as you say.

The 680 News facebook page is where I go to see real debate has a distinct composition of foundational right-wingers who react without knowledge or care of process.  The fight on there was, surprisingly, 50-50 pro- and con-.  This is what I meant above when I said the pro- side will be fighting.

Offline BC_cheque

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #25 on: June 15, 2017, 11:14:13 am »
Maybe it's not about whether someone might be looking at you in a sexual sense.

That hasn't been my experience, but if establishments are updating their changing areas to provide more privacy, I think that would do a lot to put their patrons' discomfort to rest.

Ok, hang on... many people now accept the premise that some people are so fragile that we should avoid using the word "rayp" (I can't believe the forum censors that one too...), and do "jazz hands" or snap our fingers instead of clapping.  And yet we're also now proposing that women who hold to long-standing social norms regarding intersex group nudity have to just shut up and deal with it?

Do you have to be special in some way before your feelings merit some consideration?

And we're now at a point where some people support providing women-only swimming times at public pools, out of respect for Muslim customs. And yet the mood now appears that women ought to share not just the swimming pool but also their showers and changing room with biologically male patrons.  Don't you think there's a bit of a contradiction there?

If a Muslim member of BodyBlitz complained that having to change in the presence of a biologically male person was against her religious beliefs, would people support some sort of "reasonable accommodation" for her?

And, if so, then why shouldn't there likewise be an effort to make reasonable accommodation for people who are just not comfortable changing in front of some unfamiliar person with their dong hanging out?

If there's a male you don't know in the locker room, what's your first reaction?

Discrimination isn't necessarily illegal.  The very existence of female-only facilities is an example of a situation where it was decided that there was a reasonable justification for discrimination. 

Another fair reason for discrimination might be to preserve the patrons' sense of security and privacy.

Another fair reason for discrimination might be to avoid economic hardship-- which might be the result if patrons stop coming to the club because they find the locker-room situation to be uncomfortable or upsetting.

 -k

I brought up the lesbian comparison to say that logically, I would think that it be more unsettling to change in front of someone with similar anatomy who is looking at me sexually than someone with different anatomy who is completely oblivious to my sexual existence.

I say that to make a case for the fact that there is nothing logical about being uncomfortable around a transgender woman and that it's just a matter of unfamiliarity.  For example, I'm sure  50 years ago the number of women unwilling to change in front of lesbians was a lot more than now than lesbians are more accepted after decades of familiarity.

As for the last couple of paragraphs, as I said before, I do get the other side of the argument, but I think that sometimes the masses have to be forced out of their ignorance.  There was a lot of resistance to blacks drinking from the same fountains and gays being able to hold hands without getting killed. 

Both societal shifts took decades to happen and it all started with the few people who stood up for their rights. 

In other words, if some people wanted to boycott a restaurant back in the 50's that allowed blacks and whites to sit together, continuing segregation wasn't the answer. 

I'd like to be on the right side of history when inevitably the same shift happens with transgenders.

Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #26 on: June 16, 2017, 10:11:51 am »
I brought up the lesbian comparison to say that logically, I would think that it be more unsettling to change in front of someone with similar anatomy who is looking at me sexually than someone with different anatomy who is completely oblivious to my sexual existence.

I say that to make a case for the fact that there is nothing logical about being uncomfortable around a transgender woman and that it's just a matter of unfamiliarity.  For example, I'm sure  50 years ago the number of women unwilling to change in front of lesbians was a lot more than now than lesbians are more accepted after decades of familiarity.

It's an assumption that a trans woman has no sexual interest in women.  Dia mentioned that one of her trans women acquaintances was a lesbian.  I'm no expert on the subject, but I don't think that gender dysphoria is necessary linked to homosexuality.

As well, lesbians don't walk into a locker-room with a sign that says "Lesbian".   If you've changed in a public facility, you've probably been checked out by lesbians, and women who were curious, and by completely straight women who are still interested in seeing what "the competition" has.

And you keep using the word logic, but none of this has anything to do with logic. 



As for the last couple of paragraphs, as I said before, I do get the other side of the argument, but I think that sometimes the masses have to be forced out of their ignorance.  There was a lot of resistance to blacks drinking from the same fountains and gays being able to hold hands without getting killed. 

Both societal shifts took decades to happen and it all started with the few people who stood up for their rights. 

In other words, if some people wanted to boycott a restaurant back in the 50's that allowed blacks and whites to sit together, continuing segregation wasn't the answer. 

I'd like to be on the right side of history when inevitably the same shift happens with transgenders.

People accept the premise of a female safe-space free from men, but the reason some women seek out male-free spaces is due to anxiety directly related to naked males, regardless of gender identity.

If someone was traumatized by a dog attack early in life, and later finds themselves standing in front of a big Rottweiler, the owner's assurance that "relax, he's friendly" actually does very little to reassured the frightened person.  It's not a switch people can just turn on and off.  And someone with anxiety regarding being naked in front of males will not simply feel reassured by "relax, she's trans."

I'm also still curious about the hypothetical Muslim patron. Do her religious sensibilities deserve consideration that other women don't?

 -k

Offline MH

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #27 on: June 16, 2017, 10:40:06 am »

If someone was traumatized by a dog attack early in life, and later finds themselves standing in front of a big Rottweiler, the owner's assurance that "relax, he's friendly" actually does very little to reassured the frightened person.  It's not a switch people can just turn on and off.  And someone with anxiety regarding being naked in front of males will not simply feel reassured by "relax, she's trans."

Right, but that is an edge case for a safe space.  And, although it's a practical concern, it doesn't come into the question about rights.

Quote
I'm also still curious about the hypothetical Muslim patron. Do her religious sensibilities deserve consideration that other women don't?
 

People are not obliged to provide women-only spaces, but they can't discriminate (a 2nd time) if they do.

Offline kimmy

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #28 on: June 17, 2017, 11:32:04 am »
Right, but that is an edge case for a safe space. 

I'm not sure it's an edge case. Based on some of the statistics going around, it seems that a lot of women have actually had traumatic experiences with men.  Maybe it's not unreasonable that such people would want a penis-free environment to relax in.

And, although it's a practical concern, it doesn't come into the question about rights.

There's a subjective judgment being made here, that one kind of discrimination is allowable but another is not.  It's acceptable for some people to want a safe-space, but not for others.

People are not obliged to provide women-only spaces, but they can't discriminate (a 2nd time) if they do.

Well then there's that. This whole discussion kind of tippy-toes around the fact that we've already agreed that some amount of discrimination is acceptable. If people really feel that strongly about discrimination, then maybe we should just let everybody in. Rebrand Spa Lady as Spa Human.

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Offline BC_cheque

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Re: Gender Culture
« Reply #29 on: June 18, 2017, 09:57:45 pm »
It's an assumption that a trans woman has no sexual interest in women.  Dia mentioned that one of her trans women acquaintances was a lesbian.  I'm no expert on the subject, but I don't think that gender dysphoria is necessary linked to homosexuality.

As well, lesbians don't walk into a locker-room with a sign that says "Lesbian".   If you've changed in a public facility, you've probably been checked out by lesbians, and women who were curious, and by completely straight women who are still interested in seeing what "the competition" has.

And you keep using the word logic, but none of this has anything to do with logic. 



People accept the premise of a female safe-space free from men, but the reason some women seek out male-free spaces is due to anxiety directly related to naked males, regardless of gender identity.

If someone was traumatized by a dog attack early in life, and later finds themselves standing in front of a big Rottweiler, the owner's assurance that "relax, he's friendly" actually does very little to reassured the frightened person.  It's not a switch people can just turn on and off.  And someone with anxiety regarding being naked in front of males will not simply feel reassured by "relax, she's trans."

I'm also still curious about the hypothetical Muslim patron. Do her religious sensibilities deserve consideration that other women don't?

 -k

No, I don't think a Muslim woman's right trumps a transgender right.  I don't think any kind of religious right should trample on any type of human right.  If the law regards a transgender woman as a woman, she should have a right to exercise in a woman's facility.  If that makes any Jew, Christian or Muslim, uncomfortable, that's too bad. 

If the sight of a woman with a penis could cause harm to others, I could see the point, otherwise no. 

As for feeling threatened by a penis, I don't think that's why we have segregated gyms.  Having worked in gyms when I was younger, I know it's partly women wanting to work out without being watched by men, and also because they don't want to be hit on by men.

Which brings us back to the lesbian comparison.  With a lesbian, she is for sure interested in women, but a transgender woman may or may not be interested in women.  That's why I said it's more logical to be uncomfortable around lesbians even though we're not.

The point I was making which you did not address was that 50 years ago there was just as much of a fuss put up about allowing gay women into change rooms, but as times passed most of us couldn't care less if they're working out next to us.

In due time, I believe the same thing will happen with transgender women.