How we stand to lose our human rights: on a sleeping nation and actions taken.


I know I haven’t written much for awhile , but now I find myself writing on a major issue most folks have probably never even heard of.

 

How many of you are familiar with the anti social behavior, crime and policing bill 2013 ? My advice would be to get familiar with it as quickly as possible, this one lil act has the powers to cause untold damage to human rights in the UK.

As I am typing it is rapidly getting pushed through parliament. The thing about this innocent sounding piece of legislation that is most concerning is it grants new powers to police, PCSO’s and most disturbing of all private security.

The theory behind it sounds pure as the driven snow, police and security officers should be permitted to disperse any individual committing anti social behavior. Stop kids drinking on street corners, that sorta thing. However it goes a step further and only requires the possibility of anti social behavior to make a group of people disperse from public land they have every right to be on. Yes that means the location you are peacefully protesting against can send somebody from their own staff outside to order dispersal on pain of arrest. Consider that for a moment, then try to define anti social, such a slippery term. At different times ASBO’s have been granted for offenses ranging from having sex too loudly, to sarcastic laughter, and even in one case slow hand clapping as it offended the individual.

Here are just a few examples.

 

Partially-deaf Michael O’Rourke, 51, of Peterhead, was given an ASBO following complaints from his neighbours for tormenting them with very loud country and western music throughout the daytimes.
Mr O’Rourke was banned from playing his favourite Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash tunes during daytime hours, but was fined for constant breaches.

Caroline Cartwright, from Washington, was given a 4 year ASBO banning her and her husband from having loud sex.
For almost four years marathon sex sessions at the Cartwight household were driving neighbours mad with their moans, groans and bed-banging.
The couple were caught breaching the order for a second time, after police received a complaint that her morning wails and whines were said to be heard at 10.15am.

A shepherd was given an Asbo for using his flock to intimidate neighbours, which he breached in January.

Peter Trigger was given an ASBO stopped him from wearing skirts or showing bare legs on school days between 0830 and 1000 and 1445 and 1600.

A MAN accused of breaching a court order banning him from laughing or clapping in public has had the charge against him dropped after 20 months.

Stuart Hunt was issued with the interim Anti-Social Behaviour Order, or Asbo, in 2007 as part of an ongoing feud with his neighbours, Stuart and Shirley Latham, over their shared access road.

The 49-year-old, of Drumnadrochit on the banks of Loch Ness, is still subject to the order and claims he was accused of breaching it after calling Mrs Latham a “stupid idiot” when she blocked the road with her car in October 2010.

The charge against Mr Hunt stated that he breached the order by being “unpleasant in conversation, verbally abusive and insulting towards Shirley Latham, causing her distress”.

However, prosecutors yesterday deserted the case, which had already been called in court around 16 times, because it was no longer in the public interest to proceed.

The Asbo is one of the most unusual to be imposed in Scotland – banning Mr Hunt from laughing, clapping slowly, staring, waving objects or being rude or insulting in public.

ASBO’s have also been used at different times to ban hoodies in certain areas and impose a 9pm curfew on under 16’s even ones without a criminal record.

 

These are just a few examples and as you can see anti social behavior orders have a spread as broad as a yorkshire accent, and seem to be entirely left to the opinions of the person delivering the order. This effectively devastates freedom of assembly, violating the human rights act. Nukes freedom of protest, and doesn’t exactly do a hell of a lot of good for freedom of expression either. Now you see why I am so concerned, this act is already on the commons reading, and we weren’t even told it existed. This needs to be righted while we still have any human rights left at all. I have started a petition, I would really appreciate it if anybody signed, because right now we need all the help we can get.

http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/uk-government-reject-the-anti-social-behaviour-crime-and-policing-bill#

 

Sometimes we are our own worst enemy, on words and wounds.


Ok this post isn’t gonna win me any popularity contests, is it not intended to. This post is to raise awareness of actions we as a community take that are detrimental to our own cause, and to others. Without further ado I introduce the list of stupid shit we DESPERATELY need to stop perpetuating.

1. hooo boy this is a biggie, Die Cis Scum, those 3 little words are hostile and threatening, yes odds are they were originally intended as a vent by somebody who had faced violence once too often, I understand that, but still . Words of violence are never an acceptable approach in any social justice movement, we don’t need shit like that to make our point, and all it will do is alienate and divide us from potential allies of many kinds, so please knock that shit off.

2. Cis in general. Seems harmless enough right? Wrong, regardless of what the word originally meant it is now taking on an entirely new meaning and being wielded as a dividing tool and a weapon. Our enemies have enough ammo to use on us do we really really need to make their bullets for them? In time the meanings of words often change, for instance once the word slut was a gender neutral term for an untidy person, and at that time had no sexual overtones. The manner in which it was used in later times changed that, same as the word Cis, regardless of intent has now become by basis of it’s usage derogatory and divisive.

3. Sex as a social construct. STOP, JUST STOP, there is so much wrong with this I don’t even know where to begin, sex is complex sure, but sex is no more a social construct than height , weight, , race, or species. Sure it comes with a lotta social roles and other crap attached against the persons will. That is not their fault, nor does it erase their identity . That person may need to transition due to other circumstances, they may not. That does not mean just because it can be altered that their sex is any more a social construct than any other physical attribute. Transsexuality is not about the social roles, nor is sex , and neither should be. So erasing a persons lived realities and oppressions by simplifying them down to social construction is downright insulting , destructive, and pointless.  time to stop the madness.

4. but, but, cotton ceiling. Please for the good of all that is sacred cut this shit out, some people aren’t attracted to particular genitals, this is not a fault it is an orientation, we can’t change that and should never be pressured to try. Peoples sexualities are as diverse as can be imagined, some people only desire certain attributes in their partners,  some people are attracted regardless of physical attributes, some myself included are attracted to nobody but will love a good mind, and some people can only get a boner over cars. This is their sexuality and they have a right to define it however they wish. However by the same token nobody has the right to make another individual feel lesser over said physical attributes, that is unacceptable too, but has fuck all to do with the bullshit theory that is the cotton ceiling. If you wish to talk about disrespect of a trans person do it, but quit using a rapey, creepy, theory that is about as watertight as the titanic to do so.

5. telling trans men/trans women you currently have male privilege.

I know male privilege exists however here’s the thing, Trans men do not experience it, they may experience the social pressures to conform to a male role, however unless that individual is extremely fortunate in how they appear to others they will not fit into that neat little pigeonhole of male, but fun fact nor do trans women. When a person transitions they forfeit any right to the privilege they may have have and are regarded as class traitors by many.  The human perspectives are intensely binary, when a person no longer fits either class in a way society deems acceptable they are pushed by default into the  less privileged of these 2 categories by the collective, but at the same time into a third category a ? group. People dislike an enigma and as a result both trans women and trans men alongside quite a lot of queer individuals are treated rather like a sub class. We cannot afford to divide ourselves over the presence of a privilege that none of us truly have, and may have been largely been experiencing the negative sides of from the day we were born, by coercion into a male role or a female role against our desire and without our permission.

6.This one is gonna get me a lotta hate, the dreaded bathroom meme.

If a person is trans and is not in transition then the debate should end there,they should be using a neutral facility, unfortunately idiots with victorian values block construction of such facilities. If a person is on the spectrum but is a transgendered individual who still identifies as a male and has no intention of ever being anything else they should use male facilities, male identified not transitioning == stay the hell out or use a gender neutral.

7. tranny, I’m reclaiming it.

2 words for that idea fuck and that, reclaiming a slur is immensely problematic for some of us, especially the ones who still hear that word spat at them on a regular basis. Reclaiming a word is a lovely theory, one that rarely works, and when it does it pisses off a lotta people that you can use it and they cannot. If we are to let vile words die out we need to stop using them and call others who use them until they eventually fade away. Otherwise the end result  is the still hurtful and traumatic word being used and the victim being powerless to call them on it because somebody else in the community had to claim a hollow victory being able to use the slur themselves.

8. wbw space let me come in.

We aren’t the big bad wolf here, we are not doing our community any good by huffing and puffing and demanding entry at such events, nor by pushing for their closure, if anything is to change these events need to happen. We cannot and should never try to force change. Reasoned debate outside the events is a far more sensible and less invasive way of dealing with things than pushing our way in.

We are not thugs, so why act like it. If a philosophy entirely supports itself on exclusion of us then what good are we doing if we seek entry?

None, it’s like a gay man seeking to join Westboro baptist church. Trans exclusionary gatherings will never be a good place for us to be, and our presence will only lead to conflict  , our beliefs are too different.

Besides these women owe us nothing, they have their own issues to fight, many of which we can all agree on, We should accept that, aid on issues we can both agree with if we are welcomed, and if not just grant space. After all differences of belief do not mean total emnity, nor should they. Far better unlikely allies on so many feminist causes even if we differ on 1 point than at each others throats constantly.

Anyway I’m gonna stop now while I still have at least one reader left :p

The fucking cotton celing debate again, or put the whip away and back away from the equine carcass.


First off I should probably state, as a transwoman myself I despise this theory, I think it is poorly worded, fundementally wrong, and needs to be removed from use before it can do anymore harm.

That being said I would like to apologise.

To those who were offended or harmed by this term and the fallout it wrought I apologise.

To those who decided to interfere in consenting relationships between two people based on the fact one was trans I do not apologise. It is not the victims place to apologise

To those who felt pressured or coerced by this term, to those who felt pressured into accepting trans partners based upon this , or felt your refusal would be deemed transphobic I apologise.

To those who treated transpeoples presence in a way closer akin to an unclean parasite than a human being I do not apologise.

To those who felt transphobic based on lack of attraction to trans people  I apologise.

To those who deliberately misgendered trans people as a way to harm them or interfere in their relationships and friendships even with those they were out to, I will never apologise to you, you have acted in ways as misogynistic and privileged as the patriarchy itself.

To any and all who suffered through this horrid term, it’s effects. the opressiveness of it. the rapeyness of the term itself I apologise.

To any and all who ever used this term as a weapon of debate, to any who ever used it to pressure another human being. You have done more harm to the trans community as a whole than you could ever imagine. I am ashamed such actions ever took place.

That being said I would like to propose we let this term die, there are better ways to get through to people than this. I would like to see trans and non trans move on with their lives as peacefully as possible and this term die as it should have done long ago.