This skit about dressing your faggy son up in a masculine Halloween costume is a joke. You know that, because it’s produced by The Onion. But this article, about women “deceived” by their boyfriends who hide their female-to-male transgender status, is not supposed to be, because it’s published by Seventeen magazine. Oh, so it’s just offensive on purpose?
We doubt Seventeen started out the pitch for “True Life Drama: My BOYFRIEND turned out to be a girl!” as a way to offend the transgender community. But then there’s the “little” things, like interchanging male and female pronouns without caution. Oh, and the big stuff: Sending the message that FTMs are out there to “trick” biological women into relationships — without any acknowledgment that, hey, there might be some transgender readers of Seventeen and, hey, they might be having a pretty miserable go of things too. “The point is that the Seventeen editor for this story chose to portray female-to-male trans youth as really girls — and by extension male-to-female trans youth are really boys,” writes trans blogger Autumn Sandeen. “In the way the story was presented, it portrayed all trans people as being deceptive liars — and ‘lie’ is their word, not mine. Trans people, and many others in and out of LGBT community, know that genitalia and the gender markers on identification documents don’t always tell the full gender story of an individual. What the sensationalizing of this Seventeen story does is a recipe for teaching intolerance to trans youth based on gender identity and expression, and this recipe — when I think about Brandon Teena and Angie Zapata — is also a recipe for fueling violence against trans people.”
And in case you were wondering, yes, there is a Facebook campaign.