Friday, January 31, 2014

interview with a misinformed thoughtless troll

[edited for whoopsies]

Okay, interrupting my own temper pout tantrum to post this interview because I've been working SO hard on it. And then I will get back to flouncity flouncing the flouncy ego tomorrow.

So, you probably heard about how Joss Garbagehead Whedon was spewing transphobic...for lack of a better word...GARBAGE on twitter. I'm not going to link to him because I only link to myself people who aren't [CN: possible blue collar worker slur] GARBAGE MEN and who actually deserve mouseclicks.

Basically though, the gist of what he said is
You have to have a penis in order to be a man. And also, I hope all trans people die.
LOL your transparent HATRED of HUMAN FUCKING BEINGS, Joss Garbage.

Anyway, while I've been pouting and ignoring (not ignoring) all of you, it occurred to me that if I really am a journalist or whatever the fuck it is I am here (servant? blogmaudess? linguistic engineer genius? most under-appreciated, humble, selfless human being in the multi-galaxy?) that I should perform an ACTUAL, interview with someone with whom I disagree.

So, the anonymous editor of this blog has mentioned in passing (ie, putting ridiculous demands on me and my time and energy) that she kind of disagrees with my approach to the Josstastrophe of the mega-millennium. LOLWEVS.

So I interviewed hir, and I TRIED to listen to this dissenter in good faith and hear hir out here. (I have always found it ludifuckrulous when people at the BITTER BLOGS say that I do not allow respectful disagreement and dissent on my blog. Here is a fucking SHINING EXAMPLE.)

But anyway, in spite of the tremendous graciousness with which I entered into this interview, my editor ended up being a misinformed, thoughtless troll (mtt) with whom I could not in good conscience engage for the sake of my own professionalism, integrity, and humanity.

Nonethefuckless, I've decided to post a transcript of the interview here so that you can see the kind of garbage nonsense that I have to deal with on a daily basis and the megafuckedness of troll logic that is deleted from comment threads on a second-by-second basis in order to keep this space safe. Here it is

[CN: Rational thought]

JUDITH SHAKESTOWN (JS): I'm excited (not excited) to hear what you have to say about the latest Josspocalypse.

misinformed, thoughtless troll (mtt): Yeah, so I agree that what Joss Whedon (JW) said was really unfortunate. I can see how trans* people and allies would be upset about it. The assumption that all men have penises and testicles and that no women have penises or testicles is pervasive, and this assumption can have (and has had) disastrous effects for trans* people who are frequently harassed, assaulted, denied health care, and even murdered for having the "wrong" genitals.


mtt: Yes, exactly. Transphobia bad. I do think though that there have been some missed opportunities in the ways in which people have responded to JW's comment.

JS: WTF. No. JW's comment was a pile of composting,  transphobic banana peels and orange rinds. Defending that kind of garbage bigotry is like waving Ockham's soiled, plaid underpants in the faces of candied octopuses and telling them hey your gay brain.

mtt: Yeah, okay, metaphors. So, I'm not actually defending JW's comment. Here's what I'm thinking. For the record, I think that you may have misrepresented what JW actually said and may therefore be creating a straw man. What he said is that one way of creating strong female characters in comic books would be to create characters without penises/balls. Essentially, JW made a flippant remark or joke that wasn't completely thought out. This doesn't--


mtt: Nope. That's not where I'm going with this.

JS: Listen, it's really apparent that you HATE all trans* people and think that they are monsters and that you have nothing of value to add to this conversation and that you are racist troll. But, please, go on and I will intently listen (not listen).

mtt: Okay, like many people who live outside the trans* community, it probably hasn't occurred to JW that someone doesn't really need to have a penis in order to be a man and vice versa. Or that the assumption that all men have penises (and all women don't) is really harmful and detrimental to many trans* people. Granted, if this hasn't occurred to him it is most likely evidence of cis privilege.

JS: LOL blah blah garbage fart.

mtt: I wonder though how one should respond when one encounters cis privilege in others. One way to respond would be to bludgeon JW with metaphorical cocktail forks, spew hatred at him for his blatant transphobia and inexcusable ignorance, attack his character, and raise him up as an unforgivable banner of all that is wrong with the world.

JS: Duh.

mtt: Consider another possibility. Consider the fact that there are LOTS of people to whom it would not occur that JW's comment was offensive.

JS: Insultuous.

mtt: Ok, insultuous. This is a golden opportunity. What if instead of attacking JW, one were to, say, give him the benefit of the doubt (whether or not he's earned it, but in hopes of producing the best results and/or creating the best possible circumstances in which he might have the opportunity to do better)? What if one were to ask, simply, something like, "Hey, I know it may not have occurred to you and that you probably didn't mean it this way, but have you actually considered what it means to assume that a woman must be penis/testicle-free? This assumption actually negatively affects people, particularly trans* people in ways that many cis people may not have even thought about it due to their own privilege."

You know, the way that you might respond to a child or a student, to another human being who, like all of us, is still learning. Sure, if someone continually, belligerently, refuses to consider the unintentional effects of their language then, yeah, reprimand them or disengage.  And, yes, get angry at JW and make space for rage against his comments because they are tiresome and hurtful and damaging.

Can we also at the same time recall the times when we too thought that boys have penises and girls don't and also think about what helped us move through/beyond those assumptions? And can we, adjacent to our anger, craft the kind of responses that we would have liked to have gotten if/when we publicly made a similar mistake and identified an area for growth/rethinking/change?

JS: WTF. It's not MY JOB to educate people. WTF do you think we're doing here and what our whole point is?

mtt: No, I mean, definitely I do think that JW is ultimately responsible for his own education. 
JS: What a fuckload of garbage-y transphobic garbage. Mesus.
So, there you have it, folks, This is the kind of troll garbage I have to deal with every fucking second of every fucking day.


  1. That garbageshart Joss Whedon (if that's his real name) forked up much worse when he killed Anya. I'm not contemptuous, I'm ANGRY! FRIES SMASH!

    1. I seriously have no idea who Anya is or Joss Whedon for that matter, other than the fact that he is a worthless, racist garbage transphobic troll doll's belly button's ass pimple.

    2. Your saying that you didn't know what I was talking about totes disappeared me. At least you didn't express surprise (or the lack of surprise) at finding out, that would have been garbage farts.

  2. All that added work done by the hardest working goddess of the entire internetisphere when hir should have got all hir needed with


    There is no point in conversation with people who can't be as right as you PSOFF!!

    I'm going to go and write the same thing for a much smaller audience on my blog right now!


  3. I don't know how you did it, making those masterful and nuanced statements and then plowing through them with the exact opposite. It was a thing of satiric beauty. And I've deliberately crafted this comment so that you can't be sure which interlocutor's voice I'm referring to either way.

    Cocktail forks aloft, hoisting the nourishing canapes of your choice!

    from your ever-loving

  4. I have to disagree with your take on this; I'm much more on your imaginary Liss's side in this interview. Joss Whedon doesn't live in a cave. I don't give him the benefit of the doubt or believe for one moment that he was ignorant of the ciscentric/transphobic implications of what he said. Not in the world he lives in. I believe he knew and didn't give a damn, because he thought what he said was funny. Anything to get a laugh. I do give people a pass when I think they're genuinely ignorant. Here, I don't think so. And I would respectfully suggest that I have a far better sense of these things than you do or any cis person does. You're way offbase here.

    Donna L

    1. (from mtt)

      DL, I think that's totally fair, and I appreciate you posting. I don't think that anyone is obligated to give him the benefit of the doubt, and I think it's completely appropriate to be angry and not have any patience for what he said. (Not that you need my permission to be angry--just wanted to clarify that I don't contest those responses. Those reactions make sense and seem completely right to me.) I definitely don't think that what he said is right, and I really don't even think that one reaction (contempt vs. benefit of the doubt) to JW is necessarily morally better than the other. Just kind of thinking in utilitarian terms and throwing another possibility out there, but definitely I think there could be good reasons for ignoring this possibility or finding it obnoxious. Again, in all seriousness I appreciate hearing your perspective.

      /character break

    2. Thanks for listening.


  5. I am going to throw PC to the winds and declare definitively that one cannot ejaculate into a man without using a penis. I know that that statement is phallocentric in that it centers an hypothetical penis, therefore I am omitting the content note in order to avoid drawing attention to my horrible manners.