Location: Western Massachusetts
Gender: not a boy, except when I am
Sexual Orientation: queer/bi/lesbian (all true at the same time) with rare interest in biological males
Relationship Status: en-gay-ged
What's the meaning behind your user name: vitamin C but with a play on my nickname. Also, I liked the journal title I came up with to go with it: "Recommended Dosage: An apologia a day..." It's also entirely possible that I'm good for sore throats. You never know.
More About You
Describe your personality to us in one paragraph:
I'm a contradiction, a walking paradoxical mythology
all my own, and you think I talk the same way,
with that easy sense of self, with that home-base
taste in my mouth.
What are your hobbies and interests?: Drawing and writing comics, writing poetry, Halo 3, Devon Rex cats, examining and analyzing White privilege and ethnocentrism and racism, sci fi, hip hop, biology, philosophy, multiracial identity, fencing (less now that a few years ago), losing friends for calling them on their bullshit, contracts, property law, the science and socialization of concepts of beauty--especially as related to race and whitened ideals, waist-hip ratio...
Have you any accomplishments?: I won best of show for a painting I did in 6th grade haha...a bit more recently: I finaled at fencing Nationals 2001, several other wins in fencing don't remember exactly anymore, wrote a pretty great autobiographical graphic novella, graduated college, started law school and made it though the first half of the year so far...
Do you have any special or hidden talents?: almost, but not quite, having affairs with teaching assistants and profs (after I'm out of their class, of course)
What's your strongest quality? How about your weakest?: self-awareness. I'm way socially awkward when I don't know people well but know them kind of... strangers and friends are fine... acquaintances... I don't know.
What's the best advice you've ever received? Given?: "You're not required to be reasonable or consistent." and "Don't ask questions you don't want the answer to."
What's something nobody knows about you?: I used to want to grow up and be a Gargoyle. I still wouldn't mind being one.
If you could give one gift to the world, what would it be, and why?: Successful colonization of other planets so that overpopulation and pollution can't wipe out our eggs in one basket up in here--separate planets for groups that just won't get along.
Who is your role model and why?: I don't have just a single one... I've got a hodgepodge of traits I like in various family members, fictional characters and others.
Name the craziest thing you've ever done: Have sex on the hood of my (obnoxious) ex's car with my current.
State your opinion/view on something: Pedophiles and rapists should be put to death, or at the very least castrated without anesthetic.
Share your coming out story with us:
I think coming out is a constant choice--in every situation you enter you have to decide again whether or not you're going to be out, be subtle, be loud... but the first time I really chose to label myself was in 7th or 8th grade. I was in a fight with my mom and yelled "Well...I'm bisexual!" (to piss her off or something, not sure) and she said "So?" Then for a while I said I wasn't anything yet since I hadn't tried anything with anyone.
At what age did you first realize you were bisexual/lesbian/trans/queer?: Label-wise when I was 11/12/13 ish and learned the word "bisexual". Before that I knew I was different and always wanted to see naked or half naked women more than men. I used to fantasize about being the man in sex, still do sometimes, for that matter.
Is it possible to be queer by choice?: It's possible to choose the label "queer" but you're born with predispositions and tendencies and you're attracted to who you're attracted to... it isn't a choice to be oriented any particular way; it's socialization and nature working together.
And whether or not it is a choice shouldn't really matter, in my opinion. If people want to choose to do non-normative things sexually or otherwise I don't know why it's such a big deal for the people who aren't involved, as long as everyone involved consents (and is capable of consent).
What do you think of "tolerance"?: It's better than intolerance. I think people shouldn't be required to accept and approve of differences or traits they don't like in others. People should acknowledge difference, be respectful, and live and let live. I don't think everyone will ever love and like everyone else in the world.
What is your definition of 'gender queer'?: Not subscribed to binary gender roles, making your own gender to perform your own way instead of trying to be like one or the other as defined by society.
Share your point of view on double standards within the GLBTQ: I can't stand the transphobia and biphobia... it pisses me off that groups like gays and lesbians who are discriminated against and hated and hurt turn around and put the same bullshit on other groups instead of seeing their own story echoed. And I can't stand watching minority groups stomp on other minority groups to get rights for themselves... history repeating itself, I suppose. If you're asking straighties/normies to accept you as just like them, human like them, then why can't you extend the same humanity to people who are different than you?
Do you think queer politics and feminist politics are inextricably linked?: Yes, because both are about demanding equality for subjugated groups. Groups which aren't mutually exclusive from each other--there are female queers and queer females... how can anyone choose one identity over their other pieces and parts? I think race politics should be included too since so many identities can intersect in specific individuals.
Right now much of the world sees gender as binary, an either/or quality in which one is either male or female. What social change could help bring into practice the idea that gender is on a sliding scale?: I think that granting same-sex marriage rights (or taking straight marriage away and making it civil unions) would eventually lead to gender and sex not being viewed as important parts of mating or pairing up... which would make for a more receptive environment for the idea that gender doesn't matter that much and is fluid, is a personal expression. Also, media representations of more varied gender identities would help socialize people to see more possibilities, and at least be aware of them.
Many queer people have begun to redefine their ideas about gender (to include words like genderqueer, trans, etc). How have the new views about gender affected feminism?: Feminism has blended into queer rights a lot, and the equality sought isn't for "women" per se, but for all genders... on the other hand there's been some divide where some feminists want to continue thinking in binary and seeking to stop "men" and think of some of these identities as attempts to take male privilege or abandon the 'feminist fight'.
What makes someone a feminist?: Belief that non-biological male people are people too! Gasp!
Are there certain things you MUST do or certain ideas you must hold to be considered a feminist? Why?: I think you can't be completely focused on physical appearance and getting the approval of society by fitting into the current appropriate gender role you're assigned to... you have to believe that women are valid strong people with just as much right to privileges as men and actually apply the belief to your life by not inertly allowing societal standards to run your life. If you don't apply your beliefs to the way you live I don't know how you can really be a feminist.
Other than that there are a lot of ways to be a feminist, the different view points are what make it all worthwhile. It would be utterly stupid to expect everyone to believe the same things and behave the same ways.
How would you explain feminism to someone who didn't fully understand it?: I'd start by clarifying that it isn't about male-bashing and could be better described as "equalism" so that it doesn't appear to exclude men from the group.
Show us how you're a feminist in your everyday life: I take up space, refuse to let men subtly bully me by taking armrests or having their legs knocking into me in chairs next to me... I glare at them in the eyes if they try to dismiss me as I walk by or they walk past to get something. When the occasion arises I speak up about some bullshit they're pulling or trying to justify--in class or otherwise. I bring to my friends' attention the assumptions they unconsciously use in everyday conversations.
Tell us about someone in your life who you would consider a feminist, and how he/she contributes to the feminist movement today: My mother. She is a strong woman of color, and feminist who has often been part of activist groups. She raised me to be a strong woman, a warrior, and to never take shit from men, never be controlled. She's involved in social activism within the Episcopal church lately, educating people about racism and privilege and how discrimination has a counterpart in privilege.
I also learned from her bad example in one thing--I don't think crying is feminine and therefore weak like she does. I've only seen her cry once. I want to be strong but that doesn't mean rigid and cold in expression of emotions. Crying is something men should do too, not something women shouldn't do anymore.
Feminism has made great strides since the First Wave. We can vote! We can wear pants! In your opinion, what else of importance has happened in the movement? How much of it was/is positive? What does "the movement" even mean, anyway? Take your time, we're not going anywhere:
Jeez what a question! Ok, well I think since the big strides there have been setbacks in the demonizing of the word "feminist" wherein women and girls feel uncomfortable identifying as feminists or demanding equal treatment and end up subscribing to male control via eating disorders and unhealthy obsessions with looks and money and material. Also, I think that there is a watered down version of feminism that is shallower and less analytical... like the Marie Claire magazine feminist--a woman who cares about world hunger and sexism in the workplace vaguely, but also wants to be skinny and have perfect hair and makeup to get a man. There are plenty of women spending tons of money and effort for painful uncomfortable or unhealthy methods of being more "beautiful" who can't seem to make a connection between their behavior and their supposed feminist and woman-power ideals... women calling each other whores and sluts and ugly and fat instead of questioning why we're turned against each other and the underlying problematic idea that women are only worth their looks.
On the other hand, there are many more women in powerful positions. Women are reaching higher and higher positions in corporations and politics. Despite how these women have to work so much harder than men to get there only to be judged on their appearance and choices to not be "good mommies," I consider these to be great strides and moves that will help change laws and opinions to eventually reach a reasonable level of equality.
If you could change one law/stigma/culture of women in society what would it be and why?: Well, in case you didn't catch this opinion of mine from what I've said so far, I think the part of women's culture that overemphasizes physical attractiveness as a woman's entire worth needs to get gone. I'm not saying that physical attractiveness is inconsequential or totally irrelevant, but simply that intellect and personality and talent MIGHT POSSIBLY be just as important (or more so) to a woman's worth.
What impact (if any) has feminism had on culture (such as fashion, lifestyle, etc): Well women have gone from being the dainty covered up protected creatures of the past to the hypersexualized barely dressed creatures of the present... I'm not sure if that's exactly progress, but I don't mind the freedom to dress as I please or the exposed midriffs. I like that women are more independently sexual and speaking up about what they want and their own desires and needs.
Is current children's media showing enough strong, independent lead female characters or promoting an old binary gender role?: Children's media is a lot better than it used to be--Dora the explorer and other similar strong female characters have been made. And I love that it is acceptable to identify with and enjoy such strong female characters for boys and girls. That really shows the progress from the old world of children's media where girls "knew their place" and could only experience adventure by identifying with male main characters. The His Dark Materials trilogy has a great example (Lyra) of a strong female lead that is not interested in traditional female roles or being mild and meek.
Explain your opinions and views on how the media (and society) has accepted or violated feminism: Media still emphasizes virginal "all american" girls as heroines and virtuous while representing promiscuous or "bitchy" (outspoken, strong) girls as "skanky" or "slutty" or just generally bad. There are a lot of old gender role ideas being perpetuated in the media with ever so slightly "modern" twists on them (romantic comedies). The wedding industry is just a giant disappointment and stress machine. It has become more acceptable for women to say they are feminists, and almost normal for women to say so.
Could you start a riot?: Grab your gun and cock it. Girls do it better and we know it!
Define what dyke riot means to you: Well in the context of this community, it seems to be a rating group based on the exchange of radical & intelligent ideas between queer women/bois/etc in an honest and in your face way.
What makes you so special? In other words, why do you think you belong in dyke riot?: I'm smart and introspective and eloquent. I have a unique perspective as someone who is in-between a lot of identities. I am both Chinese and European Jewish, but I'm also neither of those because I'm something else entirely. I'm gay, I'm lesbian, I'm bi, I'm queer...they all fit but not completely. I'm a girl who's a boy except when she's not... my gender identity changes day by day. I'm complicated and awake.
How did you find us?: A morbid fascination with rating communities on lj lead me to many that grossed me out, some that were intriguing, and then eventually to dyke_riot.
Go on. Promote us:
Please post 5-100 pictures of yourself. One of them MUST be a 100x100 picture of yourself.
the 100x100 one
with friend and fiance
1 of 3 halloween costumes for various parties: Halloween 2008 (with my fiance here)
fiance and former roommie/friend
we were gay daddies with a little boy... who drank wine lol
with my girl
one of my best friends from Ohio (where I did my undergrad)
with one of my kitties
my girl with the other two
with my big bro
visiting family in CO with my fiance
being climbed on by family in CO
Some older stuff when my hair was shorter & various colors
my jacket was so money :-P