Shemale Documentary or Christian Hit Piece?

in Opinion

I recently was asked to review the movie “American Beauties” by Groove Films. The description that came with the email gives you a slight clue that something is amiss here.

“American Beauties (2005) is an award-winning documentary on Asian transgender immigrants. We enter the secretive, often misunderstood world of immigrant male to female transgenders. In a series of illuminating interviews, Amanda, Imani, Kimberly and Kosal I’ve revealing insights on the issues closest to their hearts: discrimination, prostitution, and sex reassignment surgery as well as their former lives, and their dreams for the future.”

I was very hopeful about this film, but after a few minutes, I found some really disturbing content.

Amanda: “Men are like attracted to, you know, somebody transgender because they have best of both worlds. You know, they’re woman with something extra, which I was telling them when they ask me, you know. And, once you get cut off, then you’re not special anymore. You’re just another woman.

And I don’t know, some people, or most of the people I heard that has had sex change are not like happy. They are not happy. I mean, because you know, you can’t feel anything. This is like a hole there.

And yes, you know, your husband can be thinking that you’re a woman, and you know, everybody else thinks you’re a woman, but then, you know what was there, and you know, and you know it doesn’t feel like it used to or whatever. But then I hear that it doesn’t make you complete.

Imani: “Yeah, some people want it, some people don’t want it. Because you don’t have a feeling, you know, you don’t get the feeling, so a lot of people don’t want it, because what’s the use of it. A lot of people just like it because, you know, they get that, you know, they can…you know.”
[emphasis mine]

http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docId=-13365223372875502

This is either a subtle hit piece by the religious right or a fetish piece by a ladyboy chaser. Either way, it’s definitely a smack in the face of transsexuals and chocked full of misinformation.

Is there a grade worse than “F-“? If so, this movie gets it.

Marti Abernathey is the founder of the Transadvocate and the previous managing editor. Abernathey has worn many different hats, including that of podcaster, activist, and radiologic technologist. She's been a part of various internet radio ventures such as TSR Live!, The T-Party, and The Radical Trannies, TransFM, and Sodium Pentathol Sunday. As an advocate she's previously been involved with the Indiana Transgender Rights Advocacy Alliance, Rock Indiana Campaign for Equality, and the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition. She's taken vital roles as a grass roots community organizer in The Indianapolis Tax Day Protest (2003), The Indy Pride HRC Protest (2004), Transgender Day of Remembrance (2004), Indiana's Witch Hunt (2005), and the Rally At The Statehouse (the largest ever GLBT protest in Indiana - 3/2005). In 2008 she was a delegate from Indiana to the Democratic National Convention and a member of Barack Obama's LGBT Steering and Policy Committee.

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