Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us?

Discussion of fashion elements and looks that are traditionally considered somewhat "femme" but are presented in a masculine context. This is NOT about transvestism or crossdressing.
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Brad
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Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us?

Post by Brad »

It seems that the focus as of late on transgendered individuals, particularly Laverne Cox and Caitlyn Jenner, has helped our cause by allowing mainstream society to expect to see, and be more accepting of, unconventional men. Of course most skirt wearing men are not transgendered, but this most recent phenomenon may help increase our acceptance.
Last edited by Brad on Thu Jul 30, 2015 9:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Caultron
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Caultron »

Yes, it's like, "Well, all that other stuff is going on, now this, oh well, can't fight it, live and let live."
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renesm1
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by renesm1 »

My take on this is that it re-affirms in people's minds that if you want to wear a dress or skirt you have to pretend to be a woman (or change your body through drugs/surgery to be one).

Too many people conflate transgender individuals with people like us who have no desire to be women but just want to wear skirts and dresses.

I'd rather see more examples of men saying they are still men regardless of their attire.

Overall I'm not entierly sure this helps men like us. It is very helpful to those who feel they are the wrong sex though, so I'm not against it either.
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RichardA
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by RichardA »

In today's society we all have to be "labelled" and put on the right boxes that we belong so I'm against it, I'm not transgender I'm a man who likes to wear what I like and what I feel comfortable in.

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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by crfriend »

Personally, I think the (seemingly) increased focus on the trans-* world tends to further stereotype regular blokes who want to branch out into non-conventional forms of sartorial expression and who possess none of the trans-* characteristics. I feel this is not helpful one bit, and, in fact, may tend to hinder straight normal guys who wish to experiment outside the "normal" box that's allocated to men. All the focus is doing is reinforcing the notion that any guy who dares to look a bit different has something "wrong" with him, and I do not like that one little bit. However, nobody is going to be remotely interested in a perfectly normal well-adjusted guy who just happens to wear skirts; it's not even news, it's just "weird" -- weirder than the trans-* world which the onlooker can trivially attach a label to.
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Caultron
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Caultron »

I don't consider myself part of the trans-* world either, and I wouldn't want to be characterized as that.

(Well, OK, 1%, maybe, but that's only one percent.)

But I do think there's more tolerance toward gender-blurring in general now than there was 10, 20, or 50 years ago.
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dillon
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by dillon »

I'd say take a look at how gender identity and perception, and the public understanding of gender variation are presented in the media. You have mainstream media that is embracing MTF dysphoria and SRS, yet doesn't seem to care about presenting or exploring the broader range of milder compulsion of heterosexual males to experiment with, borrow, adapt, and adopt ways and apparel formerly in the domain of the opposite sex.

So why is this?

Simply because the commercial media isn't in the business of journalism. It is in the business of selling soap...and cars, drugs, junk food, phones, etc., to the wondrous automatons that are the American Public. It doesn't benefit commercial media to promote thinking among the public. To them, we aren't targets for enlightenment and consideration; we are only a segmented market of consumers. And thoughtless consumers are the best consumers, because they don't analyze their decisions. So why would the media encourage thinking?

It is far simpler for them to operate in the continued mode of cubbyholing everyone, and classifying everything into categories that every brainless wonder can comprehend without ever looking beneath the surface. Additionally, the media would then have to hire intelligent people and expend the time and resources required to explain the enormous range of variation. That can't be done between commercial breaks! And then their basic organization would have to refocus on journalism rather than marketing. And doing so would likely exceed the intellectual capacity of the smiling, bubbly, giggly bobbleheads that pose as anchors for so-called news shows; that morning programming which might be called 'infotainment' if one is feeling generous and diplomatic.

So, while it may be good that "Caitlin" is embraced on an emotional level by commercial media, it gives acceptance to gender melding only on a binary level...zero and one, on and off, black and white. The human heart and mind, however, is analog, and there are far more shades of gray that don't fit neatly into convenient labeling or classification. Perhaps commercial media, especially the "Caitlin" saga, has shifted a portion of the public toward sympathy, perhaps even empathy, for the decisively transgendered, but it's my opinion that what we really need is an intellectual acceptance of the full range of gender melding.

So, as far as the correspondents to these fora are concerned, I'd have to characterize it as a wash. It's good that mainstream media isn't snidely scoffing and dismissing transgender issues in the way Fox News and all the conservative "Mullahs" of the airwaves do, but at the same time, the shallow treatment given by the bimboes and mimboes of the commercial media is reminiscent of the old theme to Secret Agent; they're "giving you a number and taking away your name."
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by rick401r »

I was at work wearing a black utilikilt and a red/black bowling shirt along with black kilt hose and black work boots. The boss asked me if I was trying to become like Caitlyn Jenner. Of course I said no and asked her why she would think that. She said because my outfit was so well coordinated. I let it slide but wondered why just because a man dresses in a fashionable way he's considered to be more feminine.

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Caultron
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Caultron »

They ask because they don't know, and because they're trying to assimilate within the bounds of what they do know. So be just patient and politely explain it to them.
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by wsherman »

In a word , no. Carl tstereotyping. The general public tend to lump anything that doesn't fit into their pigeon holed concept of reality as something that is deviant and as such they don't examine the "why". I encountered such labeling long before I ever wrapped a kilt about me or donned a skirt. I was ever one who took care about the way I looked and always behaved in a cordial manner, for this I more than once was labeled "gay" . This happened once in a resturant where my wife worked and she overheard the conversation while waiting on a table. While taking the orders at the aforementioned table she thanked the party for compliment paid to me for my dress and demeanor saying my husband would be pleased to hear of it but he's not gay, that's just the way he is. So just being polite and dressing neat and clean around here will get you labeled.

It's an uphill climb gentlemen but in time we'll crest over , the ladies did and so shall we.
By the way we are guilty of labeling to when we broad brush conservatives as ill intentioned people or certain Christian denominations as being closed minded, not all are. I am a conservative and have a evangelical background and I approve and of and wear skirts, kilts, I also wear earrings. I sport long hair which my wife decided to color back to it's original shade of blond I had when we married!
I add here that I too am guilty of the labeling game when I lump all olititions as self serving a habit I am trying to break by endeavoring to stop by examining their records and making sure I know where they stand on the issues. I pray for them too as they are human as we and face a difficult job at best.
I mean no offence here I just wanted for us to look at ourselves too.

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Caultron
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Caultron »

That's an interesting point about stereotyping other people who stereotype us.
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Tor
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Tor »

I can't say as I find the transgender acceptance helpful. I think it is more as Carl mentioned somewhat more specifically in another thread: Those (most?) of us here aren't really inclined towards bending gender so much as expanding the "acceptable" clothing box for men. Thus, while the increased acceptance may result in us being hassled less, it hides the possibility in people's minds of it being nothing more than a style choice disconnected from gender expression.

Near as I can tell, there is nothing of any note anyone here likes to take from that hasn't been the (non-exclusive) domain of men at sometime, somewhere, except perhaps some things that didn't exist until recently. Even there, though, I think one can find examples of the closest older equivalents being men's wear somewhere. Thus, the proper assumption is that there is no particular reason for taking from "women's" clothes to be anything other than a style choice absent other indications - something that all the focus on trans-* hides, to our detriment.

As for stereotyping, it can be either good or bad, depending on how one uses it. As an example I know someone who was wronged. I heard a conversation in which what happened was described to another person. That person then correctly guessed the nationality of the perpetrator (without being asked to guess) and went on to describe how a very similar sort of thing had happened to a close friend on more than one occasion, always by someone from the same culture. There is reason to think that what was done isn't even considered wrong in that culture. I therefore believe that in many cases this kind of situation is how stereotypes get started and paying attention to them is a good idea. The trick is to use the stereotype to inform caution while taking care to deal with the individual in front of you and not borrow trouble.
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by skirtyscot »

Yes, it has helped.

Before Caitlyn Jenner hit the headlines, most strangers' reaction to seeing you in a skirt would have been "wtf". Now, it's still " wtf". So no change there. But her story adds to the public's experience of gender nonconformist behaviour. Add into the mix Jaden Smith wearing a dress or skirt for an ordinary day at school or a date with a girl. Top it off with the (to my mind at least) remarkably quick change in apparent acceptance by mainstream media of gay marriage - from eeew to "why the hell not?" - in a couple of years. What you get is an easier world for us to be skirted in.
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by crfriend »

skirtyscot wrote:What you get is an easier world for us to be skirted in.
Indeed that may be the case, but at what price? Some of us might not care about being lumped into the same bucket as Caitlyn Jenner and the trans-* world, but what of others for whom there is no relevance in that characterisation whatsoever?

Now, before folks jump on me for being somewhat binary I am fully aware that humans are analogue creatures, and that analogue nature is the genesis of more "shades of grey" than one can easily count or easily sort and classify. However, I lean powerfully toward a "traditional" male heterosexual role save for my style of sense -- and I don't particularly like getting lumped into bins I don't belong in. I also know that I'm wasting my time in trying to "educate" some of those around me, but it was fun when I seemingly disappointed a large number of highly-educated women who were pestering me about my skirts and I simply stated that it was a matter of, "a style choice; nothing more and nothing less. There is no subtext." There was a palpable sense of disappointment when I scuppered what must've been an anticipation of a "coming out".

Today, my skirts tend to function as a "bozo filter" which, by allowing me to observe how I am accepted in various settings, allow me to winnow out who I want to spend time with and who I likely wouldn't want to. It's been an interesting journey -- from a simple style choice, to an outright fashion statement, and now a tool which helps guide me forward during a very difficult time. And there's still not a whiff of trans-* in the mix, no matter what the mass media might try to portray me as.
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Re: Has the attention on transgendered individuals helped us

Post by Caultron »

If the LGBT / trans-* gains of recent years have broadened the general public's outlook on gender, then they've helped us, like it or not.

Notice that I'm not placing anyone here in any of the LGBT / trans-* communities. I'm only saying that those communities have widened the general public's range of acceptance.
Courage, conviction, nerve, verve, dash, panache, guts, nuts, balls, gall, élan, stones, whatever. Get some and get skirted.

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