Intolerance within the transgender community?
That’s what some people are saying this week after the trans organizers of Free Pride Glasgow event — an ‘anti-commercialist’ alternative to Glasgow’s main Pride event — decided to ban drag queens from the celebration. Then, after a social media outcry, they backtracked somewhat and decided to allow “trans drag performers,” The San Diego Gay and Lesbian News is reporting in an update to this ongoing saga.
Such tangled webs this group is weaving . . .
The reason first cited for banning all drag performers: the trans organizers felt drag performers “diminish the self-respect and integrity of the trans community,” reports the San Diego Gay and Lesbian News in its first report on all of this.
The event’s committee’s first statement on the issue included this: “The decision was taken by transgender individuals who were uncomfortable with having drag performances at the event. It was felt that it would make some of those who were transgender or questioning their gender uncomfortable. It was felt by the group within the Trans/Non Binary Caucus that some drag performance, particularly cis drag, hinges on the social view of gender and making it into a joke, however transgender individuals do not feel as though their gender identity is a joke.”
The updated statement from Free Pride Glasgow includes this: “We did not mean to send this message and apologise to trans drag performers for unintentionally doing so. Unfortunately this also appears to have offended trans drag performers. We did not in any way mean to equate cis (who are often seen as transmisogynistic by some portions of the Trans community) drag performers with trans drag performers.”
In other words, trans drag people are OK, gay or straight drag performers are not okay?
Hmm. You gotta think that the Free Pride Glasgow event is on a fast track to extinction.
Drag queens and kings have made important contributions to the evolution of the LGBT movement, and to trans people in particular. They paved the way for trans people. They are part of the LGBTQ community.
So, what damage is this doing to the reputation of transgender people in general? Will the general public realize that this is discrimination within the transgender community as opposed to by the whole transgender community? Will people make that distinction?
Well, consider the Zoey Tur/Ben Shapiro dust-up last week, and how the right-wingers in the United States have seized on it to claim the transgender community is intolerant.
Undoubtedly, there are some intolerant and exclusionary individuals within the collective body of transgender people around the world, but I’d like to think the majority of trans people are inclusive and will welcome drag queens and kings to their local Pride events.
— Jillian Page, LGBT Perspectives editor
“Let harmlessness be the keynote of your life.” — Alice Bailey