Some people just don’t get it. Case in point, my online hubby Jimi Izrael and his latest piece on Tanya White.
Tanya was kicked out of the women’s restroom at the plush Beverly Hills Hotel after being mistaken for a man. To make matters worth, even after her friend told the security guard that she was a female, the security guard referred to Tanya as an “it” while kicking her out of the restroom.
But back to Jimi who writes:
There are two things happening here: women are trying to live comfortably in their skin by adapting what we crudely call “butch drag,” and then, the broader society’s visceral reaction to same. Live and let live, right? I say, if you are a woman dressed as a man, getting kicked out of a woman’s bathrooms? Drinks are on you–mission accomplished. You prop up the façade or masculinity and manhood, you wear this masque for the world, and the world believes you, treating you as if you were a biological man. No tears: You won.
Not so fast Jimi. If Tanya had wanted to use the men’s restroom, she would have went to the men’s restroom. She opted for the women’s restroom because that’s where she obviously felt more comfortable. Second, what makes you think that Tanya’s appearance has anything to do with a façade? A lot of women dress like Tanya because that’s how they feel most comfortable, not because they are trying to pull one over on society. Just like I am sure when you get up in the morning, your decision to wear one pair of pants over another has less to do with how people will view you and more to do with what looks and feels good to you.
His madness continues…
That said, if you want to dance, you have to pay the piper. Those aren’t my rules. My Butch Sapphic Sistas have to either pee in the men’s room, hold it or be prepared to suffer the consequences of an uninformed, paranoid society not always willing to “check the neck.” Sorry. On balance, I’d say, as far as people trying to start successful movements and broaden conversations, the ladies of Lesbos are winning. So maybe the take-home lesson here is if you are a woman living life dressed as a man, you can’t cry like a girl when you are treated like a man. You gotta take it like a man. I know, I know. You want to live in a world where you have the option of behaving like a boy or a girl to universal acceptance.
Me, shaking my head. Maybe Jimi overlooked the fact that on multiple occasions Tanya and her friend identified Tanya as being a female. Maybe it doesn’t bother Jimi to be referred to as an “it.” Furthermore, since when is dehumanization considered to be “taking it like a man?” So I guess 3 year old Ronnie Paris who was beaten to death by his father for “acting gay” should have just took the beating without dropping a tear. And 15-year-old Sakia Gunn, a Black lesbian who was murdered in a hate crime in Newark, New Jersey, after Gunn and her friends were propositioned by two men and upon rejecting their advances by declaring themselves to be lesbians, the men attacked them, deserved to die because she had assumed the role.
Brother please. While I can appreciate your appetite for all things lesbian and gay, some discussions are better left to those who actually live the life rather than those looking in from outside at our lives.