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A few things you’ll see in issue two of JABR

Just a Bit Radical (http://www.facebook.com/justabitradicalmag) is an LGBTQ+ ‘zine by the people for the people, so to speak. We encompass every letter of the Alphabet, and here’s some things you can look forward to in our second issue:

http://www.facebook.com/MetroSam the lovely and talented Sam is going to be doing an interview for us in issue two of Just a Bit Radical. Excited? So are we! ♥ ♥ You might know Sam from his amazing Genderbread Person that went viral on Tumblr: http://bit.ly/IsnrcO

Also, an interview with April Ashley, an amazing woman and a pioneer of MtF/trans* rights. We’re so humbled to be speaking to her, we can’t even begin to tell you all. If you want to learn more about April before the ‘zine goes live, visit— http://www.april-ashley.com/

We’re also going to be talking with the founder of the Genderreel Film Festival, a trans*/gender-variant/etc. film fest in Philadelphia. http://genderreelfest.com/?page_id=32 — Know some filmmakers that have made a work about trans* issues? They’re looking for submissions, so drop it like it’s hot!

Another thing you’ll be seeing are Q&A’s from http://www.wearetheyouth.org/ and https://www.facebook.com/mytransgression …If you know someone who wants to write an article or submit artwork/photography to us, let us know! Submissions for issue two are open until August!

 

Check it out!

An interview we did with GenderReel film festival, whom you’ll be hearing from in issue two of JABR.

 

http://genderreelfest.com/?p=1785

The Kickstarter is live! The clock is ticking!!

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1033936815/just-a-bit-radical-magazine

Please, help us spread the word! Donate if you can! The LGBTQ* community desperately needs this ‘zine. We fully believe in what we’re doing and can’t wait to share it with you!

Make a wish

I always knew I wasn’t like the others. I didn’t want a boyfriend, and I wore clothes that the other girls called. “Boy’s clothes.” all the time. I played in the mud, ran after soccer balls, and climbed trees. Tomboy, they said. I knew I liked girls, and I swore if I did enough wishing I’d wake up and just be a boy already. I knew I preferred boy’s clothes, and I kissed my first girl that Summer. Why did I always wake up wishing I had a different body? Why didn’t I like what I saw in the mirror?

Luckily for me, I soon got my answer. My school had a group of amazing people come speak to us about gender and sexuality. They told us about things like being genderqueer (I almost fell out of my chair. They were talking about me!!) and transgender, and that it was okay to be these things. That it was okay to feel confused, and that no matter what—We were still loved and accepted. It was the best I’d felt in years.

I still dress in masculine clothes. However, sometimes—I feel like putting on a dress, and I do. The best part about identifying as genderqueer, is that there is no right or wrong. There is a lack of labels, and you aren’t pressured to be anything but yourself. I’m not saying it’s right for everyone—But for some of us, it’s perfect. For me, it’s perfect. Never doubt that you will find your way, even if you decide that genderqueer isn’t what suits you.

Someday, you are going to fall in love. Hopefully, the person you love will accept you regardless of how you identify. Never settle for anything less. I am lucky in that the person I love respects me, genderqueer and all. She doesn’t mind if I wear my boxers, or bind my breasts. If I go by a different name, or different pronouns. She doesn’t mind at all if the next day, I’m in a dress and heels. (Although she has been known to laugh at my sad attempts to walk in them.)

Being transgender or genderqueer is amazing, and you should never be ashamed of who you identify as. I am blessed to be who I am today, and I promise you that there are other people out there just like you that are happy, successful, and are looking forward to meeting you! Never give up hope, and never stop wishing.

Speaking of wishes, I’m still waiting on that pony and the monster truck…

Now go out there and change something. You have the power to do amazing things, just the way you are.

I am not invisible.

Or, why does the trans community forget we exist? A little blog about how identifying as genderqueer has shaped my perspective, and how the GLBT community at large tends to gloss over our existence.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=genderqueer in case you’re curious.

We’re all part of the same family, but why oh why do more than a few FtM communities on the internet shame and marginalize their brothers for falling under the GQ or non-op/no-hormone route in their transitions?

To understand this we have to get into some pretty uncomfortable territory, meaning looking at culture and gender and assigned sex at birth, among other issues. What’s in your pants being another. Most if not all FtM men that are doing this glossing over and shaming, do not in the slightest wish to acknowledge their past as females, and perhaps to accept their genderqueer brothers—they would have to stare androgyny in the face. That might be uncomfortable to them. Perhaps they are afraid of seeing their own past mirrored back at them? Maybe they genuinely believe they are right, that identifying this way is the ‘easy way out’ and that genderqueer bois, female-bodied men, genderqueer people in general are not wiling to face the harsh reality which is medical transition.

I cannot speak for MtF genderqueer or male-assigned female-identifying individuals. I can only speak for myself. Some days I identify more male, present as such, use my pronouns to reflect that, etc. Some days it is the opposite end of the spectrum. I am female-assigned in my physical gender, but oftentimes will use packers, prosthetics, etc. depending on my presentation at the time. I do not generally use neutral pronouns because they don’t feel comfortable to me. They work for some people. I’m not one of them.

My point being, the FtM community cannot gloss over the fact that we who are genderqueer and identify as men, dress as men, bind, pack—etc…We are not less than because of the lack of testosterone. We are not less than any man because of our choice not to have surgery or HRT. Nothing makes us less than the sum of who we are at that moment, which is men—Through and through. One chemical does not a man make. This leads to the question what does make a ‘man’ and not a ‘woman’? Can one person truly say, “You are not a (trans) man, and here is why I think so?” no. You can’t. Or, you shouldn’t. Because it’s unfair and cruel to dismiss anyone’s identity or anyone’s experience simply because it is not the same path that you have chosen.

I am not less of a man for choosing not to transition. I am not less of a man for not using testosterone. I challenge anyone to say to my face, “Kiran, you are not a man because you’re not on HRT/having top surgery/etc.” Bring it on. I’ll deny that every time.

Why am I man? What makes me a better man than you at that moment? Because I am not judging you as you are so cruelly doing to me and my brothers. I am not looking down on you and shaming you simply for being who you are. Because I am classier than that. Because I’m better than that. I provide for my family, I provide emotional support for my partner, I will provide for my children, I will be a loving husband and a loving father—Despite my lack of a beard, chest hair, or a deep voice. I will be chivalrous, respectful (ahem.), polite, and teach my children empathy and kindness toward others.

That’s what makes me a man.

Glad we got that settled.