Nancy R. Nangeroni
with thanks to Riki
What am I? It depends.
When I speak of Brandon Teena, a transsexual man who was raped and then murdered because he dared identify as a man while possessing a vagina, I am a transsexual man.
When I speak of a transsexual woman who is being excluded because of her past, I am a transsexual woman.
When I speak of a pre-op transsexual who is being hurtfully categorized by the shape of the tissue between his or her legs, I am a pre-op transsexual.
When I speak of a post-operative transsexual who is being denigrated as the destroyer of his own body’s integrity, I am a post-op transsexual.
When I speak of those who dare not reveal the pleasure they derive from wearing clothing reserved exclusively for use of the opposite sex, I am a transvestite.
When I speak of those who are regarded as degenerate because they find certain items particularly stimulating of pleasurable fantasy, I am a fetishist.
When I speak of those who enjoy games of erotic power exchange, I am a sado-masochist.
When I speak of those who prefer the same sex to the opposite for intimacy, I am a homosexual.
When I speak of those who open their arms to intimacy without restriction based on sexual polarity, I am a bisexual.
When I speak of any woman who is being hurt because she dares to challenge or seek respect, I am a sister.
When I speak of any man who is being hurt because he dares to prefer sensitivity to durability, I am a brother.
When I speak of any person who is being hurt because they do not identify as either man or woman, I do not identify.
I am all of these things. In being so, I make a difference where and whenever difference is being used to make hurt.