1282 stories
·
27 followers

Cis ‘Allies,’ You Probably Think This Work is About You

1 Share

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told by cis “allies” that if I don’t directly appeal to them in the most generous terms possible, I can’t expect their support. And as far as I can tell, this is a pretty explicit way of saying, “I will not affirm the humanity of transgender people unless their movement caters to me.”

I mean, at least you’re being honest so I know upfront that I can’t count on you.

A lot of fake allies came out in full force when I wrote an article in late March, really unpacking different trans-antagonistic microaggressions (in plain terms, acts that hurt trans people in subtle but important ways). I put an incredible amount of labor into that work, trying to hold space for cis folks’ emotional realities while also being firm about what is and isn’t acceptable when interacting with folks from my community.

“Oftentimes, as we try to support the people we love, we can make mistakes – and that’s a normal and expected part of the process,” I explained. “The best way to make it right is to learn a little more, do some self-reflection, and not just apologize, but commit to changing our behaviors.”

Wow, I’m so mean… (sigh)

I offered a piece that I believed could bridge gaps in understanding for cis folks, particularly loved ones, who were struggling with their own emotions around transition. I put an incredible amount of intention behind every word that I wrote. And I wrote from the place of someone who has firsthand experience trying to hold space for my family, my friends, and my own pain all at once.

I’ve often said that when I write these rare pieces that are designed to reach folks of privilege, I’m (in some ways) giving them my heart. And a few months out now, and thousands of responses later, I find myself questioning why I did that in the first place.

Cis folks, I’ve been told over and over again that I’m not patient enough, nice enough, generous enough. That if I’d just be a little more understanding and a little less hostile, you’d come through.

(And this is a familiar refrain for folks who are marginalized. This isn’t new. “Allies” love to hold their support hostage, making it as conditional as possible so that they feel justified in doing nothing. I see white queer folks in my own community doing this right now. White folks who are looking at Black folks protesting at Pride for the right to exist, telling them they’re too angry, too disruptive. As if the comfort and feelings of white people somehow matters more than Black lives.)

Allies, most having never shown up for these communities beyond a filter on their profile pictures, love to tell folks that their tactics are wrong. As if marginalized folks haven’t lived in these bodies and persisted through these struggles their entire lives. As if allies are somehow better positioned to determine how communities should advocate and care for one another.

“Allies” like these think that they know better and that they’re owed the emotional labor and warmth of marginalized people at all times… otherwise we’re not worth the time of day.

Cis people, you’re breaking my heart. But that’s what I get for putting it on loan, right?

In fact, some of you find it more offensive that I’m calling you “cisgender” than you are with the rampant amount of violence waged against trans women of color. You’re outraged by a label, a category that does nothing to endanger or disempower you — one that names the safety that you possess in this world because of your identity, and asks for you to acknowledge it.

A simple acknowledgment. And you accuse us of asking for too much, of being too much.

But this was never about me. I’ve held your hand. I’ve held this space for you on more than one occasion, applauding your good intentions and giving you the benefit of the doubt. This was never about what I did and didn’t say, how I did or didn’t say it — I know this because I’ve coated it in honey for you and you still said it was bitter.

When it comes to privilege, it’s almost always about comfort. Your comfort. And until you’re willing to sit with that discomfort, my approach and my labor are irrelevant at best. I could hand it to you made-to-order, to every specification, and it still wouldn’t be enough. If you’re not ready to be made uncomfortable, not just once but many times over, you were never going to be my “ally” in the first place.

And to be clear, I’m not here to make you feel comfortable.

My work, first and foremost, has been giving folks in my community resources to help them survive — whether it’s a tool to start a conversation, or the affirmation they need to feel a little more whole in a world determined to irreparably fracture them. Even when I’m taking the time to teach cis folks, I’m doing it because I want trans people to live in a world where we don’t need to have these conversations anymore.

You emailed, and you tweeted, and you commented, determined to make it about you and what I apparently owed you. You told me that I was unkind, and that I’d never get allies if I didn’t cater to you.

That article had sugar on top and ice cream in the middle, and you said it had a bad aftertaste.

Instead of sitting with those feelings, wondering how you could process in a way that would translate to meaningful action, you rejected everything out of hand. You unloaded your feelings and fragility onto me, demanding that I take it all back. You lashed out, as if to say, “If I have to feel uncomfortable for even a minute, I’m not interested in the pain and fear that you experience every minute of every day.”

I’m not going to claim that I’ve never been defensive, uncomfortable, fragile. I’ve encountered my own learning curve around my privileges, particularly around race, class, and education. But I’ve learned (and oh-so-generously spelled out for you in this article about call-outs) that navigating this graciously is part and parcel of being a decent human being.

Cis folks, I’ve never asked you to be perfect. I know better than anyone that when we’re trying to unlearn all this toxic shit, it takes time and intention. Marginalized folks have been saying ad freaking nauseam that showing up for us and doing the work is a process, not a destination or a title that you earn after you collect enough cookies.

(The concept of “ally” itself is dubious at best. Bless Indigenous Action Media for this article about the “ally industrial complex” and being accomplices rather than allies, some further reading if this conversation has miraculously sparked your interest/you haven’t angrily tweeted me already).

But when I hand you my labor and my heart on a silver platter, and your instinct is to withhold your Very Precious Allyship™ (as if trans folks can’t get on without you — talk about self-important), the problem isn’t with me. It’s with you. 

The amount of labor (emotional, intellectual) that goes into directly engaging with attitudes and people that dehumanize us is, in itself, far deeper and more difficult than any momentary discomfort you experience when a trans person asks you to do better.

And your inability to honor that labor tells me that my approach here isn’t the problem. It was never the problem. Your unwillingness to engage in conversations that don’t flatter or comfort you is. And if that’s your idea of allyship, you can keep it. I won’t miss it.






Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
20 hours ago
reply
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete

Watch a Giant Squid Wrap Its Tentacles Around a Paddleboard

1 Comment and 2 Shares

Legends of giant squid attacking vessels on the open ocean are great nightmare fuel, even if they never truly occurred. But the sight of a real-life giant squid wrapping its tentacles around a man’s paddleboard, as seen in a recent video that’s been making the rounds, makes those old myths certainly seem plausible.

In the video, originally shared on Instagram by a South African paddleboarder named James Taylor, the creature can be seen slowly laying its tentacles across the board from beneath. Taylor does not seem overly concerned with the tentacles grabbing his board, even if it seems like something out of a sea monster movie. And as it turned out, things were not nearly as sinister as they seemed.

According to Taylor’s description posted with the video, pointed out by Earth Touch News, when he first caught sight of the large squid, he noticed it was injured. As he later explained on Facebook, the squid was covered in wounds and missing a number of tentacles. Taylor went back to shore, and got a rope so that he could take it to land for potential research, reasoning that the creature would have died from its injuries and be lost or damaged to other predators.

Taylor and his friends took the squid back to the shore, killed it, and contacted the local aquarium to come check out the specimen. The aquarium proved unavailable, so he said that he “dissected” it and sent pictures and videos of the find, from which a researcher was able to identify it as an actual giant squid (genus Architeuthis).

The video has since received some backlash from those who think Taylor may have acted too rashly. Regardless of the rightness of Taylor’s decision, the short video offers a rare glimpse of the elusive giant squid in action, and a good example of what may have inspired the more outlandish legends of yesteryear.

Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
3 days ago
reply
The first three times, I read this headline as "wraps its testicles" and could only think ?!?!?!?!?!
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete

Trader Joe’s Ice Cream Recalled Because Pieces Of Metal Aren’t Dessert

2 Shares

A big ol’ scoop of ice cream may be in order thanks to some sweltering hot temperatures making their way across the U.S. But if the carton you have in the freezer happens to be from Trader Joe’s you might want to pitch it instead: The grocery chain recalled all of its Matcha Tea Ice Cream over pesky metal pieces. 

Trader Joe’s’ announced over the weekend the recall of Trader Joe’s Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream after determining the potential presence of small metal pieces in the cartons.

The recalled ice cream was sold in 1-quart containers with the SKU 055740. So far, the company says it is unaware of any injuries related to consumption of the frozen product.

While Trader Joe’s didn’t provide a specific quantity of ice cream covered by the recall, the grocery chain says all affected product has been removed from store shelves and destroyed.

Consumerist has reached out to Trader Joe’s for specific details on how much ice cream has been recalled and the location of stores where the product was sold. We’ll update this post if we hear back.

Customers who purchased the ice cream are urged not to eat it and to return the product to any Trader Joe’s for a full refund.

Anyone with questions can call Trader Joe’s customer relations at (626) 599-3817 or contact the retailer through its website.







Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
11 days ago
reply
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete

Hyundai Recalls 600K Vehicles Over Parking Brake Issues, Hoods That Could Fly Up While Driving

2 Shares

Owners of Hyundai vehicles should listen up, as the carmaker issued not one but two recalls today related to hoods that could fly up while driving and parking brake issues.

Hyundai announced the double recall covering nearly 600,000 vehicles combined.

The first recall covers approximately 437,400 model year 2013 to 2017 Sante Fe and Sante Fe Sport SUVs that contain hood latches that might not work properly.

According to a notice [PDF] posted with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the secondary hood latch cable may corrode and bind. If this occurs, the latch could remain unlatched when the hood is closed.

Hyundai says that if the hood is not securely closed or the primary latch is inadvertently released and the secondary latch is not engaged, the hood could unexpectedly open while driving, increasing the risk of a vehicle crash.

The carmaker says it will notify owners of the issue in late June and dealers will replace the secondary latch cable free of charge.

The second recall involves 161,074 model year 2015 to 2016 Genesis or Sonata vehicles that might contain a parking brake light that doesn’t work.

According to a notice [PDF] with NHTSA, the warning light to indicate that the parking brake is applied may intermittently not illuminate in the dash due to corrosion in the switch.

If the parking brake indicator is not illuminated when the parking brake is applied, the driver may operate the vehicle with the parking brake partially engaged, increasing the risk of a crash.

Hyundai will notify owners of the issue in late June and dealers will replace the parking brake switch free of charge.





Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
15 days ago
reply
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete

State Word Map

2 Comments and 18 Shares
The top search for every state is PORN, except Florida, where it's SEX PORN.
Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
22 days ago
reply
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete
2 public comments
Covarr
22 days ago
reply
I love when they're mislabeled. "The most popular TV show in each state" fails to mention it only lists a show in the state where it's most popular to prevent repeats.
Moses Lake, WA
alt_text_bot
22 days ago
reply
The top search for every state is PORN, except Florida, where it's SEX PORN.

Costco Is Thriving Because People Still Don’t Buy Their Toilet Paper Or Steak On Amazon

2 Comments and 3 Shares

As retailer after retailer closes up shop, and big box stores like Target and Walmart put increased focus on e-commerce, Costco continues to not only stay open, but to grow, despite having virtually no online retail presence. Why? Because people aren’t yet turning to Amazon to fill up their kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.

The warehouse retailer announced its latest quarterly earnings today, and in a call with analysts, Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti shared the news that comparable store sales for the last nine months are up 3%, and sales across the whole company are up 8% compared to the same period last year.

Costco is beating the odds by offering things that. things that are impossible or annoying to order online. Most of what people go to the warehouse club for is food, and the top sellers in food are booze, deli items, and candy. While other physical stores (except Walmart) complain that foot traffic is down, Costco knows that its members are visiting 4% more often than they were last year.

Gasoline is an important thing that brings customers back to the physical store, getting customers into the parking lot. While they’re there, they might as well walk around the store and see what special items are around that day.

That’s another factor that Galanti cited: The “treasure hunt,” or finding special one-off items that won’t be there next week or even tomorrow. Sure, it’s exciting to grab a box of Kirkland Signature golf balls online, but people just love an in-person treasure hunt.

Costco is very slowly expanding its online presence, running fulfillment out of 19 distribution centers. It comprises 3.5% of the company’s sales and increases modestly.

Consumers overall have been resistant to grocery shopping online, wanting to pick out their own produce.

Specific to Costco, in some markets, Instacart is catching on, partly because it makes Costco’s inventory available (at a markup) to non-members in 40 cities, with orders coming from 240 stores.

What Costco doesn’t plan to do, Galanti emphasized a few times in response to analyst questions, is keep up with competitor Walmart (which also owns the warehouse chain Sam’s Club) by acquiring e-commerce companies and increasing its online sales in less than a year. You know, like how Walmart bought Jet.

“We’re doing things offensively, not defensively, online,” he told listeners, mentioning e-commerce acquisitions directly or indirectly multiple times during the call. Instead of imitating competitors like Walmart, Costco plans to do its own thing and gradually offer more of its merchandise to online shoppers.





Read the whole story
ryanbrazell
28 days ago
reply
The money I save on Flonase pays for my annual membership cost.
Richmond, VA
Share this story
Delete
1 public comment
fxer
28 days ago
reply
Amazon won't sell me a dog and soda for a bukfity
Bend, Oregon
Next Page of Stories