[–] ProxyMusic 33 points Edited

Thanks for posting that, OP.

This is why I - as someone who became an adult in the 1970s, and remember that time very well - constantly get into arguments on Ovarit with posters who claim that originally most males claiming to be trans were same-sex attracted guys who since childhood have been naturally "effeminate" (a term I hate because most "effeminate" guys IME are usually flamboyant, histrionic, vain, selfish, preening, attention-seeking, catty, mercurial, preoccupied with superficialities like looks and fashion and deeply sexist and often misogynistic ... but that's another topic).

In my observation and experience, during the 1970s heterosexual men were commonplace and predominant amongst the small population of men who became TIMs. In countries such as the USA and UK, most gay men in the 1970s were fighting for the right to live openly as gay men; only a very small portion of gay males back then LARPed as women FT and wanted to be seen by the world as women.

This was particularly true of white guys. Just as today, the population of homosexual boys and men who wanted to be seen as women in the 1970s were disproportionately males from racial/ethnic minorities who grew up in families, communities and locales that even by the standards of the 1960s and 70s were extremely homophobic. Typically these guys due grew up in religions, cultures and places characterized by geographic and cultural insularity, homogeneity and "small town" mentality. (A large number came from tight-knit, closed-off, provincial places where everyone knew everyone else's business and there was tons of social shaming, child abuse, sexism and misogyny - and where children were raised to being god-fearing and to feel disgust at the very notion of homosexuality, particularly male homosexuality. Most had backgrounds of USA Bible Belt conservative protestant Christianity; Roman Catholic Latino, Filipino or East Asian heritage; Muslim of Middle Eastern or South Asian heritage, sometimes Hindu too; and Pacific Island or East Asian heritage such as the Samoan F'afine and Thai "lady boys").

Yet even so, in the 1970s many gay TIMs of minority race/ethnicity living in the USA who came from conservative traditionalist religious backgrounds and engaged in cross-dressing such as Malcolm Marsha Johnson and Sylvia Rivera wanted to be seen and accepted within the gay community and the wider world as gay men who were transvestites. They didn't demand or ever expect anyone actually to see them as women.

I'm not saying in the 1970s there were no white homosexual men in countries like the USA and UK who wanted to be seen as women and sought "sex change" surgeries. In fact, there were quite a few of them around, including famous white ones like April Ashley, the gay white TIMs featured on some BBC and American talk shows in the late 60s and early 70s, and the gay white TIMs who were stars in Andy Warhol films and celebs on the avant garde art scene. There were also famous fictional gay (or bi) TIMs back then such as Lola in the Kinks' hit song from 1970, whose imagined race was never described; and ones depicted overtly as white men such as Myra Breckenridge in the Gore Vidal novel and Roberta Muldoon in blockbuster bestselling novel, "The World According to Garp" that came out in 1978. I'm just saying that amongst same-sex attracted males back then, those who wanted the world to see them as the opposite sex, rather than as males who love/have sex with males and should have the right to live openly as such, were in the main not white guys with solely or mainly Caucasian European heritage.

At the same time, in the USA men who were black or other minority race/ethnicity like Malcolm Marsha Johnson and Sylvia Rivera did not represent the majority of men who were TIMs in the US, Canada, the UK and most of Western Europe in the 1970s. Just like today, most TIMs in the 1970s were white, middle-class or upper-class heterosexual men who prior to "transition" lived typical lives for straight men of their class and most of them had been married to women and were fathers. Such as the two white men who were arguably the world's most famous TIMs of the 1970s: Jan Morris (James) and Renee Richards (Richard Raskin). Morris and Richards/Raskin were bog standard straight men who "transitioned" in midlife after leading very macho lives full of "male privilege." Both attended male-only schools, served in the military, married women and fathered children (Morris fathered 5). And just as today, in the 1970s it was men like Morris and Richards/Raskin who were the loudest and pushiest and most demanding in insisting that the world see them as "real women" and as lesbians too.

[–] GoldenBee123 8 points Edited

This is an interesting read, especially as someone who was born in 2000 and has mostly known the lgbt community as it is today. The perspective of women older than me always feels grounding and reassuring. I am not crazy, things haven’t always been this way.

I'm adding this fo give a glimpse beyond my own recollections of mainstream views on male "transsexualism" in the 70s.

"Male and Female Created He Them"

NYTimes Book Review of Janice Raymond's feminist work, "The Transsexual Empire" from June 10, 1979

By Thomas Szasz

IN the old days, when I was a medical student, if a man wanted to have his penis amputated, my psychology professors said that he suffered from schizophrenia, locked him up in an asylum and threw away the key. Now that I am a professor. my colleagues in psychiatry say that he is a “transsexual,” my colleagues in urology refashion his penis into a perineal cavity they call a vagina, and Time magazine puts him on its cover and calls him “her.” Anyone who doubts that this is progress is considered to be ignorant of the discoveries of modern psychiatric sexology, and a political reactionary, a sexual bigot, or something equally unflattering.

Like much of the medical‐psychiatric mendacity characteristic of our day, the official definition “transsexualism” as a disease comes down to the strategic abuse of language — epitomized by confusing and equating biological phenomena with social roles (in the present case, chromosomal sexual identity with acting as a man or a woman). Although there are connections between these concepts and facts, neither one “causes'.’ or “determines” the other.

Because “transsexualism” involves, is indeed virtually synonymous with, extensive surgical alterations of the “normal” human body, we might ask what would happen, say, to a man who went to an orthopedic surgeon, told him that he felt like a right‐handed person trapped in an ambidextrous body and asked the doctor to cut off his perfectly healthy left arm? What would happen to a man who went to a urologist, told him that he felt like a Christian trapped in a Jewish body, and asked him to re‐cover the glans of his penis with foreskin? (Such an operation may be alluded to in I Corinthians, 7:17‐18.)

“But,” the medically informed reader might object,“Isn't transsexualism a disease? Isn't it — in the grandly deceptive phrase of the American psychiatric establishment used to characterize all ‘mental diseases’ — ‘just like any other illness'?” No, it is not. The transsexual male is indistinguishable from other males, save by his desire to be a woman. ("He is a woman trapped in a man's body” is the standard rhetorical form of this claim.) If such a desire qualifies as a disease, transforming the desiring agent into a “transsexual,” then the old person who wants to be young is a “transchronological,” the poor person who wants to be rich is a “transeconomical,” and so on. Such hypothetical claims and the requests for “therapy” based on them (together with our cognitive and medical responses to them) frame, in my opinion, the proper background against which our contemporary beliefs and practices concerning “transsexualism” and transsexual “therapy” ought to be viewed.

Clearly, not all desires are authenticated in our society as diseases. Why the desire for a change in sex roles is so authenticated is analyzed with great sensitivity and skill by Janice Raymond in “The Transsexual Empire.” Arguing that “medicine and psychology ... function as secular religions in the area of transsexualism,” she demonstrates that this “condition” is now accepted as a disease because advances in the technology of sex‐conversion surgery have made certain alterations in the human genitals possible and because such operations reiterate and reinforce traditional patriarchal sex‐role expectations and stereotypes. Ostensibly, the “transsexers” (from psychologists to urologists) are curing a disease; actually, they engage in the religious and political shaping and controling of “masculine” and “feminine” behavior. Miss Raymond's development and documentation of this thesis is flawless. Her book Is an important achievement.

The claim that males can be transformed, by means of hormones and surgery, into females, and vice versa, is, of course, a lie. ("She‐males” are fabricated in much greater numbers than “he‐females.") Chromosomal sex is fixed. And so are one's historical experiences of growing up and living as boy or girl, man or woman. What, then, can be achieved by means of “transsexual therapy"? The language in which the reply is framed is crucial — and can never be neutral. The transsexual propagandists claim to transform “women trapped in men's bodies” into “real” women and want then to be accepted socially as females (say, in professional tennis). Critics of transsexualism contend that such a person is a “male‐to‐constructed‐female” (Miss Raymond's term), or a fake female, or a castrated male transvestite who wears not only feminine clothing but also feminine‐looking body parts. Miss Raymond quotes a Casablanca surgeon, who has operated on more than 700 American men, characterizing the transsexual transformation as follows: “I don't change men into women. I transform male genitals into genitals that have a female aspect. All the rest is in the patient's mind ".

Not quite. Some of the rest is in society's “mind.” For the fact is that Renee Richards was endorsed by Billie Jean King as a real woman and was accepted by the authorities monitoring women's professional tennis as a “real woman.” This authentication of a “constructed female” as a real female stands in dramatic contrast to the standard rules of Olympic competition in which the contestants’ bodily contours count for nothing, their sexual identity being based solely on their chromosomal makeup.

Miss Raymond has rightly seized on transsexualism as an emblem of modern society's unremitting — though increasingly concealed — antifeminism. And she correctly emphasizes that “the terminology of transsexualism disguises the reality ... that transsexuals ‘prove’ they are transsexuals by conforming to the canons of the medical‐psychiatric institution that evaluates them on the basis of their being able to pass as stereotypically masculine or feminine, and that ultimately grants surgery on this basis.” The “transsexual empire” is thus a Trojan horse in the battle between the sexes, helping men to seduce unsuspecting women, or women who ought to know better, to join forces with their oppressors.

Still, why should anyone (especially feminist women) object to men wanting to become women? Isn't imitation the highest form of flattery? Precisely herein lies the “liberal” sexologists’ betrayal of human dignity and integrity: They support the (male) transsexual's claim that he wants to be a woman — when, in fact, what he wants is to be a caricature of the male definition of “femininity.” What makes transsexual surgery a male‐supremacist obscenity is the fact that transsexing surgeons do not perform the operation on all clients (just for the money) but insist that the client prove that he can “pass” as a woman. That is as if Catholic priests were willing to convert only those Jews who could prove their Christianity by socially appropriate acts of antiSemitism. Janice Raymond's analysis is bitterly correct. The very existence of the “transsexual empire” is evidence of the persistence of our deep‐seated religious and cultural preju‐dices against woman.

The war between the sexes is a part of our, human heritage. It's no use denying It. If that war ever ends, it will be not because of a phony armistice arranged by doctors, but because men, women and children will place personal dignity before social sex‐role identity.


And thank you for your comment. This was really informative.

Before being introduced to 'trans people' via Internet communities, the closest analogue I was familiar with were the Thai "lady boys" -- and even the name suggests that they're explicitly male transvestites. It is unsurprising but good to know that Western TiM "culture" has always been dominated by straight, middle-aged men...

The avalanche is here. Ugh.

[–] furyosa MERF 16 points

Bring out the avalanche rescue dogs and pray that they carry kegs of brandy with them. We're going to need a lot of it!

As long at it's those dogs they keep calling transphobic for barking and growling whenever they come near them!

Another poster on here posted a link to a really great four part history piece about a woman who investigated how TIMs infiltrated lesbian circles. this all started in the early 80s when a singular tim was accepted into a lesbian org in San Francisco and that lesbian org began to fight with other lesbian orgs about whether accepting the TIM was a good idea or not. The guy iirc was incredibly smug about it all and seemed to enjoy having hordes of women debating and fighting over him. TIMs claim to be respectful of our spaces but whenever they inevitably appear to demand inclusion all they do is divide women and pit us against each other with no costs to themselves

[–] ProxyMusic 2 points Edited

this all started in the early 80s when a singular tim was accepted into a lesbian org in San Francisco and that lesbian org began to fight with other lesbian orgs about whether accepting the TIM was a good idea or not. The guy iirc was incredibly smug about it all and seemed to enjoy...

I don't know of the situation you are describing, but something very similar happened with Olivia Records in SF after the women's music collective and record company hired TIM Sandy Stone in 1976. Not sure how the women at Olivia defined the org, but I believe it was supposed to be run solely by lesbians (or at least WLW or "woman-born women who love women"). Certainly it was widely regarded as a lesbian outfit.

IIRC, a similar thing happened in the late 70s in the lesbian community in Boston/Cambridge MA, though in a less high-profile way.

Some of the letters and stories about the Olivia Records controversy in lesbian newsletters and zines can be seen here:



male transsexuals are trespassing in Lesbian communities.

i love when women who see men for who they are call out male behavior in that way that hits the nail right on the head. this is exactly what’s going on, no fluff.

this kind of language also really shows how much we placate to them now. many lesbians who really don’t want TIMs in the community still edit their language when they talk about this issue.

i hope we use more and more of this kind of direct language when talking about this, because it really makes it clear how much female and lesbian communities are being violated.

and as an aside, this post has really banished any hesitant feelings i’ve had around TIMs being part of LGBT history etc.. if lesbians felt this way back then, i am not going to hold back from how i feel now..

There’s another pist here in the last two weeks or so where the poster quoted a letter (possibly from Janice Raymond’s work) where the guy was talking about how women would be replaced by trans because our childbearing was no longer important and because trans were prettier, better women than we would ever be. Also dated 1977/78 I believe.

So, trans ideas and strategies are unchanged but the juggernaut of the last decade has been helped along, IMO.

Yes, here. From the lesbian feminist publication ‘Sister’ in 1977:

Genetic women cannot possess the very special courage, brilliance, sensitivity and compassion - and overview - that derives from the transsexual experience. Free from the chains of menstruation and child-bearing, transsexual women are obviously far superior to Gennys in many ways.

Genetic women are becoming quite obsolete, which is obvious, and the future belongs to transsexual women. We know this, and perhaps some of you suspect it. All you have left is your “ability” to bear children, and in a world which will groan to feed 6 billion by the year 2000, that’s a negative asset.

They really learned a lot about messaging in the past 3 decades. Hide the "far superior" belief and cry pitifully, We just want to pee!

Still using this schtick though, the crossdressing men are oppressed by women!

In regards to the Sandy Stone controversy: genetic women - Gennys - have never had to suffer the discrimination, self-hatred or fear that a transsexual must endure and survive in their lives. Genetic women are not ridiculed as severely, killed, tortured and arrested simply because they are transsexual, as are transsexuals. Genetic women have many rights, in comparison to transsexuals, who have none.

Thank you for quoting this for me. I swear if we could go to another place and leave the men here pretty much to fight wars and f**k trans I could almost vote for it.

Just for the record, those adjectives he uses? I’ve never once thought of even one of them in reference to a trans woman. Not even the very rare prettified, porny ones that almost pass if you don’t take a second glance.

Clearly men think that we’re nothing but the costume they’ve forced us to wear. Let them have the costume. If only we had somewhere to go and be free.

Good lord, that’s depressing.😞 And infuriating.

Honestly, GC women need to form our own groups and spaces. But especially GC WLW. There is a dire, urgent need for i.r.l. versions of Ovarit all over the world. I truly think that if we don’t do this, band together in person just as we’re doing online, these males will take over everything.

The 70’s were the first golden age of porn. The past couple of decades have been the second. It makes sense that both ages also spawned TiMs.

We've been telling these perverts that we don't want them for DECADES. Does it get any rapier than this?

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