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A Cannibalistic Dissection Of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

28 Oct Rocky Horror Picture Show

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A week before the writing of this, FOX aired a remake of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, subtitled Let’s Do The Time Warp Again. I’m not averse to the idea of seeing it, but I’m not going to go out of my way either. Not for any particular reason politically, just simply because the original is so clearly and deeply rooted to a particular time period it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to update it. I’ll have more on that in a moment.

The main (and only) thing I need to know about the remake is that it showcased front and center a black trans woman, on the same channel FOX News is broadcast from, during a time when the right wing has dedicated themselves to a war against trans bodies. Regardless of any other merits or flaws in the project, I still find that deliciously subversive in a way the original never dared.

If you were hoping for more talk about the remake, I do apologize. There are plenty of other people talking about it, I swear. I’m not writing yet another thinkpiece about how problematic or transphobic or whatever the movie is. Plenty of other folks covering that ground. I’m not interested in RHPS creator Richard O’Brien’s bizarre and absurd notion that he can decide how much of a woman he is but nobody else can. Just yet another tired old has-been queen desperate for attention and latching onto trendy notions of “edginess” and “anti-political-correctness” as far as I’m concerned. The fact that he hates the remake makes me want to enjoy it out of spite tho.

What will I be talking about then?

Well lets start by talking about the Hays Code (and later rating systems) and the role of pulp sci-fi on queerness. Stories of alternate sexualities and gender explorations were all over the place in the 1950s, 60s and 70s, but due to publisher restrictions had to be formatted in a certain way. It was honestly surprising how far they were capable of going, as long as they didn’t directly show intimacy and all queer characters were punished at the end for their transgression from conservative mores. Here’s a sex-change sci-fi story from a 1953 comic book that covers the bases pretty well, with an exception I will elaborate on in a moment.

Rocky Horror Picture show even opens with the song “Science Fiction/Double Feature” which waxes nostalgic about shiny underwear and phallic Triffids, name-checking classic titles and names from films that would have been staples of a sci-fi obsessed 1975 audience’s childhood. Self-aware nods to these tropes echo throughout the film.

Lets line them up and see how the beats play out, shall we? We have aw shucks traditional protagonist(s), an audience insert for voyeuristic heterosexuals or questioning/curious queer folk:

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The protagonists find themselves stranded from the values and culture they took for granted, in a lawless anything goes environment:

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This leads to an awakening where deep, transgressive desires are brought to light and actualized… but at what cost?

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And at the end all transgressions are punished and the moral is driven home that some doors should never be opened:

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The spectre of conservative Americana glares disapprovingly at the dissolution of traditional values throughout the film. Not just figuratively, but directly and literally symbolized by multiple repeated vignettes evoking the sullen stoic gaze of the iconic Grant Wood painting American Gothic (a now campy and frequently satirized artwork that history forgets incited Rural Iowans to send the painter threats of violence).

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However, you will note that there is something missing from this one-to-one comparison between the sex-change comic book and Rocky Horror Picture Show. This is because in sex-change stories, the antagonist is the clothes or the transformation itself. This is as true in Glen Or Glenda in the 1950s as it was in The Danish Girl in 2015. This story has an antagonist with a distinctly more visceral presence, a hyperqueered fantasy to Brokeback their mountains and tempt them away from their traditional lives.

Enter Frank.

Frank is a transgressive nightmare, a culmination of everything feared about the sexual awakenings of the late 1960s/early 1970s. It goes well beyond the crossdressing and sexualization; Frank was meticulously designed to provoke. He literally hunts down, murders and later cannibalistically devours Eddie, a symbol of naive notions of 1950s “safe rebellion”. Eddie’s entrance, to the song “Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul“, reflects an entirely different sort of nostalgia filled with sock hops instead of gruesome horror movies. Frank nonchalantly eulogizes Eddies murder by his hand as “a mercy killing! He had a certain naive charm, but no… muscle.”

Indeed.

When Frank displayed a pink triangle on his labcoat, the symbol was still viscerally shocking and radical. The book The Men With The Pink Triangle, documenting homosexual men’s experience in Nazi concentration camps, had only come out a couple years before. The infamous Paragraph 175 of German Law under which those men had been imprisoned was still on the books.

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Frank also dons a Lewis Leathers Aviakit Plainsman biker jacket adorned with badges from the Hell’s Angels and other recognizable biker gangs (including patches with the distinct Nazi Deaths Head and Eagle iconography of the Angels). This wasn’t the “making toy runs for sick kids” Hell’s Angels, this was the “locked Hunter S Thompson in the trunk of a car for several days” Hells Angels. This also presents contrast to Eddie’s sanitized pompadour-and-motorcycle schtick as the corny posturing it was.

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Frank’s fawning over his Frankenstein Atlas, Rocky, was another uncomfortable tribute/unmasking to the underlying homoeroticism in body-building culture, a subtext simultaneously acknowledged yet dismissed within said subculture. With Rocky as the dense and sweetly naive foil to Frank’s sexual innuendo, it’s presented as yet another affront to the values of yesteryear.

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Enabled through Frank’s brazen transgressions, the protagonists find themselves freed from convention to explore their own desires. This is illustrated in the floor show scene where the players vocalize their inner conflicts onstage. Columbia is full of regret and heartbreak, Rocky and Brad have newfound sexual urges that neither can quite figure out, and Janet feels empowered by the whole experience. Shortly afterwards, Riff-Raff and Magenta stage a mutiny to topple Frank as leader. Riff-Raff’s accusation says it all:

Frank-N-Furter, it’s all over
your mission is a failure
your lifestyle’s too extreme

Ironically, after forty years of cultural advance, a film that sought to deconstruct stifling tropes and liberate expectations has for the most part been relegated to yet another formulaic exploitation. It has a historical place, as a love-letter to the queer-coded villains of Hollywood’s golden age, but at this point Frank has joined them. Don’t get me wrong; it’s still a fun ritual for voyeuristic straights, closeted drama club queers and assorted connoisseurs of camp and kitsch and likely will be for at long as movie theaters continue to exist. However, the cultural critique is a bit toothless and obvious now, the references collecting dust, and subtext lost under performative rote.

And maybe the ritual is the point now, a sort of mystery cult initiation for average folks looking for an excuse to buy a corset. But I believe an occasional reminder of what it all means couldn’t hurt either.

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“Gender-Critical” Extremists Encouraging Men To Undress In Women’s Restrooms.

24 Feb

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(EDITORIAL NOTE BY ME AUGUST 2018: Shit this predates the whole #ManFriday garbage by almost two years)

As of the writing of this article, there are over 40 bills targeting transgender individuals being voted on in various states. This is despite having zero justification to do so, as transgender protection laws lead to no increase in crime. In response, a group of self-identified “gender-critical” activists has been encouraging men to undress around children and women. What sort of men would do this sort of grotesque predatory exhibition, what could possibility be their motivation?

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Gender-criticals don’t care, as long as you say you hate trans folks. Just ask gender-critical convicted pedophile Nelson Garcia, who rants all day about the evils of transgender bathroom use on his sad little blog.

gendercriticaltoiletTERF2…and still fantasizing about men having sex with little boys

Anyway, these men acting out their creepy predatory fantasies out of some perverse sense of righteousness does nothing to test or examine the laws in place. These men were ejected, the laws work the way they were intended. And yet these creeps turn around and continue scaremongering based on the actions of their own protesters.

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If that isn’t repulsive enough, they are also attempting to goad their children into illegal acts of sexual assault.

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Astonishing.

There Were No “Men Thinking They’re Napoleon” – Debunking Anti-Trans Armchair Psych

26 Dec

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Inevitably, when trans folks existence gets mentioned online, the topic gets bombarded with folks throwing out half-remembered medical/psychological diagnoses about what is “really” going on. Now, armchair philosophy isn’t exclusive to topics related to trans stuff by any means, or is it any less annoying or hostile. I’ve just observed enough that I found common patterns I want to address/de-construct directly.

Also, a reminder that if someone online is claiming to be a professional and throwing around dismissive and pathological implications of your behavior and what medical/psychological measures you “should” be taking to address them, that is very likely a violation of their professional license.

That said, for starters, I actually kind of love when people start throwing this one around: because it proves their knowledge of psychology begins and ends with Bugs Bunny:

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That’s not a thing. “Men who think they were Napoleon” was never a thing. Ever.

It’s a frequently cited example of classic 19th century “schizophrenia” symptoms, but has no actual recorded documentation of such. On page 604 of William James’ 1890 treatise Principles Of Psychology, he describes instances of hypnotizing men to believe they are Napoleon (amongst other things), but only temporarily. It was also used an early-20th century comedy trope misrepresenting the Adlerian concept “Napoleon Complex”. It’s referenced in cartoons, Laurel and Hardy shorts, and even used as a prominent character trait for one of the antagonists in John Steinbeck’s classic story Of Mice And Men. Ironically, Napoleon Complex itself also been proven not to be a thing. Hell, Napoleon wasn’t even particularly short for his time.

But, nine times out of ten, the reason people think it is a thing is because of this:

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The classic 1956 Bugs Bunny cartoon “Napoleon Bunny-Part” more or less established this concept to mainstream audiences. And, hilariously, you see people reference it like they are citing a case study.

This sort of stuff, however, I don’t have quite the sense of humor for:

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Comparisons between gender dysphoria and body dysmorphia are inevitable, and always bunk. They aren’t clasified the same, they aren’t treated the same, and they do not respond to the same treatments. Conflation of the two is also very dangerous, because many trans folks experience dysmorphic disorders (eating disorders, self-harm ideations) that need to be treated separately. Also, reminder that Paul McHugh is a domestic terrorist hack and considered a laughingstock by his peers and pretty much anyone but the anti-trans right wing.

Anyway, the “really not thinking this through” award goes to this sort of crap:

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So, like, how do folks that propose this think this will work? First of all, it’s actually kind of difficult to get committed to a state mental hospital, without police or family escort. Unless you are considered an immediate threat to yourself or someone else, such places are actually reluctant to take folks in, because of costs. For that, these religous right dweebs can thank their idol Ronald Reagan. The idea that politically inconvenient folks can be mass-boarded in mental asylums away from the sight of “decent” people like in a Victorian Novel hasn’t been a thing for decades.

Speaking of cost, who would be paying for this? I thought these sort of dweebs were small government/no-taxation without representation don’t tread on me types?

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Right now, even as underfunded as they are, the average yearly cost per state to run their institutional hospitals is over $188,000. By comparison, even though data is limited, the cost for transgender health care is looking like around $77,000 a year (and this data is from an extremely liberal area). Opponents trot out the expense of surgery, but there’s only a handful of surgeons that even take insurance. Many of the well-known surgeons popular for their pioneering techniques do not. Yes, more surgeons will likely be emerging in the future, but what folks that aren’t trans may not be aware of is that word-of-mouth is a huge influence on doctor choice. Many of us forego insurance covered doctors for others with better recommendations. Coverage costs have always sailed way under predictions every time for this and other reasons.

And yeah, I’m definitely putting more thought into this than any of them are. I’m sure someone is gonna diagnose me with something or other for that. Feel free to do so in the comments I guess.

“STONEWALL WAS BY/FOR WHITE PEOPLE!” – #DropTheT Author Complains To Far-Right Website @FDRLST

9 Nov

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(EDITORIAL NOTE BY ME CIRCA AUGUST 2018: Oh shit, shout out to the time I literally burned this motherfucker’s website to the ground. What fun.)

It is with a heavy heart that I must announce that The Assimilationists are at it again. Someone got really, really mad about Roland Emmerich’s terrible new Stonewall movie tanking and started a change dot org petition about it. Seriously. Then they staged an “anonymous” softball interview on far-right thinkpiece site The Federalist to complain about that. Give it up, Roland, your movie fucking blows.

According to “Clayton”, it’s the fault of the transgender movement that Emmerich’s terrible, terrible Stonewall movie flopped. Also apparently the “transgender movement” is the only reason Germaine Greer, famous for authoring a pedophile grooming manual, is considered controversial. Also blah blah blah someone’s still holding a torch for the stupid RuPaul/”tranny” debate from Spring 2014… how gauche.

So, first of all, that Stonewall movie is godawful. Even white gay guys agree. Nobody needs to insert “straight-acting” gay men into “historical” movies anymore, this isn’t the 90s. It’s pandering and insulting. It’s an appeal to respectability and catering to a demographic that honestly is no longer meaningful post-Ellen, post-Will and Grace, and post-RuPaul’s Drag Race, etc. At least to everyone outside the imagination of the petition author.

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This sort of mamby pamby “straight acting” Log Cabin assimilationist bullshit has in reality done little to advance gay rights. This change.org petition comes from the same mentality as Gay Pride Whoppers and Rainbow Snack Chips. Many of us in the gay community consider it cloying and insulting to our intelligence. Which is funny because the author claims to be a left-leaning socialist with feminist leanings, while also gushing fondly about the attention his petition received from MRGays like Milo Yiannopolos and white-supremacists.

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In summary, as a personal remark to the petition author: how dare you. I’ve been out over 20 years myself, as bisexual and shortly afterwards about my struggle with gender dysphoria. I’ve been disallowed from donating blood my entire adult life because of the same shitty bans that gay men experience; transitioning didn’t change that. I grew up in a state where being gay was illegal until my mid-20s, casting a shadow on many of my formative sexual experiences; transitioning didn’t change that. During that time, I witnessed police crackdowns on drag bars where I worked and was dramatically shaken by the brutal “gay panic” murder of a local fellow drag queen/transsexual. Transitioning didn’t change that.

But hey, you insist there is a line to be drawn between you and I, and I’m inclined to agree. You may have been a “socialist” and “radical” at some point, but now you’re at best you’re a useless bougie liberal prop for the status quo, and I am and will always be a bigger faggot than you ever will.

Drop that.

 

A Quick Note On The Statistics Of “Post-Surgery Trans Regret”

2 Jun

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Just figured I’d drop this off here while it was still on my mind. It’s a pretty common argument among decidedly anti-trans circles to bring up the daunting spectre of “trans regret”. I’m not gonna say it’s not a thing (because it is), and I’m not gonna say it isn’t tragic (because it is), but I will say that damn near everything that crowd is trying to sell you about it is a flat out lie.

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In the real world, modern studies track surgery satisfaction rates as just short of 98%, which is  probably a better satisfaction rating than most of the people you buy stuff from on eBay on a regular basis. Hell, it’s significantly better (80%) than the satisfaction rate of prostate cancer surgery patients, many of whom are also filled with regret.

And yeah, like pointed out above, the oft-quoted statistic of post-operative transsexuals attempting suicide 20x the amount of non-trans individuals falls apart the minute you do the math. You have to, you know, completely and conveniently ignore the absolutely epidemic amount of suicidal ideation in the trans community in general.

Also, Paul McHugh is a fucking hack and you should be ashamed of yourself to quote him. He was also an ideological accomplice to Operation Rescue and the murder of George Tiller, which bears repeating forever. Dude is a literal fucking terrorist.

But, you know, that crowd is usually pretty science, math and general reality adverse. Gotta push that narrative.

Alex Jones Joined #GamerGate, The Pope Thinks Trans Folks = Nukes & The Week Isn’t Over Yet.

20 Feb

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alexjonesgamergate3I like how he differentiates “3rd wave”, as if he has no prob w/the first two

I’m really having trouble deciding which of these revelations is more amazing, really. I mean, Alex Jones is pretty much his own punchline at this point. Looking into it further it looks like Jones also appealed to the hashtag shortly after it began, which is unsurprising because the dude has been riding internet trending topics shamelessly for years. Also apparently the dude that maintains his wiki also maintains Gamergate’s as well and was digging up dirt on Wikipedia editors supportive of Zoe and Anita (sound familiar?). What is it with Wikipedia vandals and Alex Jones, anyway?

So yeah, this current video posted to the tag is by one of PrisonPlanet’s staff, Paul Joseph Watson. Watson is a snarling pasty toad that was apparently cursed by leprechauns to speak only in right-wing buzzwords until he can find true love and become a real boy. He also has just the most punchable face in a crew that seems to take great pleasure in being awful.

alexjonesgamergate1seriously look at this toolbag

He sardonically repeats the words “multiculturalism” and “social engineering” and some gibberish obsesssion he has about feminists ignoring rape by non-white people or something like a terrible party magician trying to hypnotize you. He talks about “joyless” feminists, but the only point in his video where I cracked a smile was when he laughably insisted there was such a thing as “organized misandry”. Also, he manages to invoke Godwin’s Law within ten seconds of his smarmy diatribe which has to be a record or some sort of drinking game.

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Speaking of constantly terrible analogies and Nazi comparisons, Pope Francis apparently thinks us trans folk are as dangerous to life on earth as nuclear weapons and people that advocate gender theory are literally Hitler youth. Yeah, the “cool pope” said that. Good times.

alexjonesgamergate6leaked photo of the transgender agenda

In his recently published report “This Economy Kills”, he talks of how each era has “Herods” that “destroy, that plot designs of death, that disfigure the face of man and woman, destroying creation.” To give perspective, Herod was the king that killed all the little boys in his kingdom in an attempt to hunt down and murder baby Jesus. This is the level of discourse he opens up with.

alexjonesgamergate7literally gender theory

He continues:

“Let’s think of the nuclear arms, of the possibility to annihilate in a few instants a very high number of human beings,” he continues. “Let’s think also of genetic manipulation, of the manipulation of life, or of the gender theory, that does not recognize the order of creation.”

“With this attitude, man commits a new sin, that against God the Creator,” the pope says. “The true custody of creation does not have anything to do with the ideologies that consider man like an accident, like a problem to eliminate.”

“God has placed man and woman and the summit of creation and has entrusted them with the earth,” Francis says. “The design of the Creator is written in nature.”

That’s like the mother lode of terrible loaded analogies. Basically it’s fancy pope-speak for the whole trans-Frankenstein “meddling with God’s creation/what hath science wrought” boogieman, taken to it’s logical extreme.

He also compares literature that includes gender theory as “akin to Hitler Youth propaganda” and “a form of colonization” which is hilarious. Maybe the leader of the Catholic Church, literally the most prominent force in violent genocidal Western colonization in history, should shut the fuck up about throwing around such accusations until he cleans his own damn house. Go fuck yourself, Popebro.

For what it’s worth tho, as far as shitty scaremongering things to say about us, at least this one is so cartoonish it makes us sound badass. I am become trans, the destroyer of worlds.

Transluminati Witches And Beyonce Killed Joan Rivers For Saying “Tranny” Or Something.

18 Sep

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transplanetjoanrivers2Countdown til someone steals this pic for their Youtube Witch House Playlist.

Shortly after Joan Rivers passed away, the conspiracy sphere pretty much erupted into ridiculous theories about her death, as they do. A lot of it centers around a dude with the unfortunate Youtube handle of ZippyThe Pinheadj (guess a-i was taken) who “prophesied” her death with a story that is as convincing as his comb-over.

joanrivers3“I predict an elderly woman with health problems will die soon. Eerie, right?”

Alex Jones weighed in, but sort of danced around the issue, so in this case we’re looking at Revelation Now. They claim her death was Occult retribution for calling Michelle Obama a “tranny”, a crime so horrible it took over a month for these imagined Transluminati Witches to do anything about it.

To be serious for a moment, there are too many things wrong with the statement Rivers made (and folks like Alex Jones repeated) to even count without even getting to the word “tranny”. It reinforces a lot of the negative ways white people sexualize black bodies (and especially black women’s bodies, constantly robbing them of their femininity). It reinforces how entitled folks feel to define other’s sexual orientations. It directly correlates transgender identity as inherently fraudulent.

But no, the “pro-tranny” crowd thinks that politically correct folks that are bothered with the term can cast killing spells. Because something about a “Baphomet Hand Gesture”, whatever that is.

joanrivers4Something like this, I guess.

Speaking of Baphomet (something I love to do), another side claims that Beyonce was behind the occult killing, because the death of an elderly woman makes an awesome 33rd birthday gift (I’m pretty sure I bought an ounce of shrooms for mine, tbqh). But in any case I wound up stumbling across “Baphomet Beyonce” in Google Image Search, which is now my favorite thing ever. So I’m just gonna post images from that now.

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