Is it wrong to ignore the gender identities of people like Chelsea Manning?

Bricker said it best.

This, as a person of color, sounds a lot like the notion that some black people deserve to be called niggers, or Latinos wetbacks, but just the ones that deserve it (“Not you, you’re not like them.”)

It doesn’t harm me anymore than calling the person “Napoleon” harms me. And in contrast, calling that person by their legal name would severely distress them. So I would choose to address them as they wish to be called.

As I said, it’s not a direct equivalency. And I doubt transgendered people are any more likely to be delusional as anyone else. I had a transgendered friend many years ago (we’ve since lost touch) and she had no illusions about her biology, it just had nothing to do with her gender identity. In all honesty it would have felt weird to me calling her a “he” as much as it would to call a self-identified and biological female “he”.

It was a hypothetical situation only. I guess it was a bad example though.

I’ve heard it opined that calling any woman a “bitch” is misogynistic. I don’t subscribe to that and I don’t think the cultural majority would either but there are people who would.

Since you seem to just be running through this thread arguing semantics and picking apart examples, I’ll suggest that since, presumably, Chelsea Manning didn’t kill several of your loved ones, therefore you actually should be giving much thought to the pronoun used to refer to “him/her”.

But, as I said before, if this how you feel, imagine it applied to yourself, even on a smaller scale. Get a speeding ticket, you get your name published in the newspaper along with some adjective you don’t agree with. Hey, you broke the law, therefore I have no respect for you, so I’m going to call you out as supporting a political party you hate or preferring a gender that you don’t, just cuz.

This is a warning for personal insults. If you feel you must, the Pit is right around the corner.

As a side note, I’ve noticed a recent escalation in rhetoric you’ve employed. Please take this as a recommendation that you stay within the rules of the forum.


Exactly. You know what the respectful thing to do is, and you admit that while knowing better, you’re going to punish him by deliberately using the disrespectful term. Again, you know using “him” is wrong. You just want to do it anyway.

As to whether it’s wrong to be disrespectful to a convict, that’s a different question. But you do know using male pronouns with a trans female is wrong.

This makes a good point.

If it’s not insulting to refer to transgender people as “he”, then it is not insulting to refer to me as “her” and I shouldn’t take offense. And I don’t - I don’t care.

But I don’t have any gender issues. I know perfectly well that I am male, and referring to me as “her” or “she” or whatever is stupid. And I suspect that, on some level, transgender people are not nearly as sure that they are what they claim to be. Therefore it is much more threatening to their self-image or their gender construct or whatever you want to call whatever they are trying to create, if someone doesn’t want to play along.

Plus the thing tends to be self-refuting. Calling someone “she” who has a moustache (and a penis and XY chromosomes) - I am not the one who looks silly.

“Ngger" or “bitch” or "fggot” - sure, those are inherently insulting. “He” or “she” or “wman" or "mle” - no, they aren’t, they are descriptions.

I began the post you quoted by saying that no, I don’t believe I am wrong. So I don’t “know” anything of the sort.


I haven’t offered one.

“Don’t be a dick to people who don’t deserve it,” was a bad formulation on my part. What I was trying to say was, if you’re going to insult a person, be careful to only insult that person. If you’re want to be a dick to Obama, call him an idiot, or a motherfucker, or a socialist piece of shit. Don’t call him a nigger, though, because then you’re not just being a dick to Obama, you’re being a dick to black people in general.

If you want to be a dick to Chelsea Manning, call her a traitor. Call her scum that deserves to be shot. Call her Traitor McTreasonface. But if you call her Bradley, that’s going to be perceived as an attack on the validity of transgender identity as a whole, and will be interpreted, by most trans people, as broadly insulting to trans people in general.

It’s a difference that is wholly irrelevant to the discussion at hand. There are any number of terms that are not intrinsically slurs, but are still considered insulting to specific demographics. “Boy” isn’t intrinsically a slur, but is perceived as widely derogatory when used to describe black people. “Jew” isn’t a slur, except when used as a verb. “He” isn’t a slur, except when it’s used to deliberately elide the existence of trans people in general.

I’m not arguing that, if you don’t like someone, you’re free to insult them in any terms you want. I’m arguing the opposite of that: if you don’t like someone, you still need to be careful about how you insult them, because you want to make sure you’re only insulting them, not broad demographic groups to which they belong.

No shit! You think? That’s what gender dysphoria is. Imagine if the whole world, from your parents and spouse and children and friends and coworkers, to your doctor and strangers on the internet, called you “she” and “Mary”, day in, day out, from birth until death? You probably wouldn’t be so damn confident in your maleness.

And if I had a vulva and XX chromosomes, the whole world would have a point in saying that “she” is what people like me are called.


The point of disagreement is that when Shodan calls Manning “he”, it’s not a slur against all trans people. It’s an insult aimed specifically at Manning.

Shodan, have you ever known someone who had a legal given name that they hated? And they insisted that you call them by a nickname. Like “William” being “Bill”, or “Theodore” being “Ted”. You might be factually correct in calling them by their full, given name, but doing so pushes their buttons. Maybe their abusive parent was the only one who called them “William” so it’s painful to be called that. Would you insist on doing it just to prove a point?

Do you understand the difference between using a nickname, and claiming “I am a woman even though I have a penis”?


So you claim you’re just insulting Manning, but you admit you don’t actually believe transgender people even exist? And you don’t know why people interpret it, correctly, as an attack on an entire class of people?

No matter how vile or treacherous or criminal a person’s actions are, I think how we treat that person reflects on ourselves. A person can be a jerk, an asshole, deserving of execution even, but we do not deny they are human. There are lines that if crossed speak to our own character. Where a person’s gender status falls on that spectrum is for each to decide, and for others to judge them for it.

Of course there’s a difference but it’s a difference that seems irrelevant to this topic. What is the difference which makes it okay or even necessary to be obstinate about how you address one person but not the other? In neither case should you be inconvenienced if you address them by their preference but in either case you risk upsetting or even offending the other person if you don’t. And in either case you could claim that you’re just being accurate from a certain perspective.

I don’t use this word in this manner …

… because it would reflect on my own character …

There are exceptions … I was helping my mom with her dog and laying out the whole “alpha” and “beta” classes within dog-culture and at the end I proudly informed her I just called her a bitch … she laughed and said I sure did …

Which brings us right back to “I only called him a nigger because I knew it would make him angry. Other black people shouldn’t be offended.”

To be fair, it was pointed out that the word nigger is inherently offensive for historical and cultural reasons that the word “he” is not.

It is not the word itself, it is the usage.

So, it is more like saying “I only called that black adult man “boy”, because I knew it would make him angry. Other’s should not be offended.”

I ask those who defend Shodan’s misgendering (and shodan), if that is appropriate?