Dear Jennifer Usher, Please Do Keep Your Focus On Me

August 17, 2013 ·

[alert type=”info”]Jennifer Usher posted up on her blog a post entitled Slacktivists? ROTFLLMAO!!!!! as a response to my recent Transadvocate post Transsexual Separatist Slacktivism Doesn’t Win Legislatively. I haven’t made it a habit of responding to her, but I am doing so this time — and personally to her at that.[/alert]

Jennifer, I know I’m violating the “don’t feed the trolls” axiom about responding to folk who, with intent, try to provoke angry or personal responses, but in this case I’m commenting to you directly. It’s because I want you to waste your time focusing on me.

Image: Jennifer UsherAnd let’s start from the point that I keep undercounting how many times you’ve tagged me in your blog. I did it again with my recent twitter count of how many times you’ve tagged me in your blog — I missed one of your blogs tags for me, so I undercounted the times you tagged me by double digits.

So, if you haven’t counted, to date I can tell you that you’ve tagged me 87 times with Mr. Autumn Sandeen, 40 times with “Autumn” Sandeen, and 25 times with Autumn Sandeen. That totals up to 152 tagged posts out of your 352 total on the Just Jennifer blog, and that works out to be about 43% of your total posts. (On my twitter posted comment on this, I underestimated that percentage by 9%!)

And, that doesn’t even go to how many times you’ve gone in the past to Pam’s House Blend and LGBT Weekly and posted comments, including a number of flamebaiting ones about my gender and genitalia.

And oh my God, do you ever get excited when I respond to you. I love that you don’t see the irony in stating that I had a complete meltdown when I wrote a dedicated blog entry about you once in the years I’ve been blogging and writing on the web, whereas you’ve tagged me in about 43% of your total blog entries since 2007. If I had a meltdown with one blog entry, how many would that be for you given 152 blog entries?

So that’s about your current focus on me. Now let’s turn towards effective lobbying and activism:

You missed the key word in my essay Transsexual Separatist Slacktivism Doesn’t Win Legislatively: ineffectual. AB 433 and AB 1266 are either now law or soon will be. Your peers and your efforts against those pieces of legislation were ineffectual. And, when it comes to this year’s AB 1121, I’m confident any activism you and your peers engage in against that bill will be as equally ineffectual.

And, I can say that just looking at your defense of your recent activism efforts in your essay. Basically, all of your efforts around anything trans, transgender, or transsexual revolve around “keyboard activism.” That “keyboard activism” hasn’t involved any non-profit or grassroots organizing, and hasn’t involved any brick-and-mortar world lobbying in legislator’s offices that worked in conjunction with online activism. Foolishly you consider this multi-track strategy of lobbying for legislation to be self-aggrandizement, grandstanding, and the efforts of “men in dresses” — foolishly because your uncoordinated keyboard-only activism from your peers and you has repeatedly proven ineffectual. You’re not considering how your tactics and strategy here in California have repeatedly failed, and it looks as if you’re going to repeat your failed tactics and strategy:

“[T]here is a much simpler, and far more effective strategy. Simply allow kooks like Sandeen to have their way.”

Going back to your obsessive focus on me, in making your trans legislation focus in California first about “kooks like Sandeen” (me) instead of first about any legislative goals you and your peers might have, y’all guarantee your own failure. This strategy hasn’t been effective in achieving your legislative goals in the recent past; I can guarantee that strategy isn’t going to be effective in the future.

So! I’m all for you keeping your focus on me instead of anything you might actually be legislatively for or against! Please-please-please expend even more of your time than you have already focusing on and writing about me! Bring it up to a full 50% of your posts that tag me! Stick to that “effective” strategy of yours! — If you keep to it long enough I’m sure it’ll eventually be a winner! …right?

But in all seriousness, here in the state of California (where we both live) the lives of trans people are improving because of bills put forward by trans activists and advocates over the past few years — bills that have been signed into law. I’ve come to the conclusion that the more you focus on me means the less chance of you being effective in our state at achieving any of your legislative goals or desires. And since trans civil rights goals achieved by legislation are extremely important to me because these improve trans people’s lives, your focus on me can’t help but improve trans community’s chances of winning legislatively in California — winning legislatively in California many more times over many more years.

So seriously, keep it up — keep your focus on me — I’m a big girl and I can take it.

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