Several people who read the article in the new issue of Voice Male (Summer 2016) entitled “Is the Ideology of the Transgender Movement Open to Debate?” were upset—angry—conveying their feelings that the article invalidated transgender people and allies. Sitting in a circle recently with a group of people who had raised these concerns, I felt vulnerable, sad, and open to hearing their experiences. I also felt privileged to listen to brave people speaking their truth. Here is a link to the article in question so you can understand more about their concerns: voicemalemagazine.org/is-the-ideology-of-the-transgender-movement-open-to-debate/
Two other articles in the issue also address transgender issues. One challenges the hate mongering that’s emanated out of North Carolina’s so-called bathroom bill. (“…all people—regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity—[should] feel safe and secure and empowered to freely express themselves.”) A second article presented an American Civil Liberties Union overview of legislation aimed at limiting gay and transgender rights. (“…more…[bills] yet loom over us and threaten to chip away at the dignity and equality all of us deserve.”) They can be accessed through the following links.
Voice Male knows that vigorous debate and disagreement are foundational to a magazine. We also recognize that sometimes positions authors take may offend, or even go beyond offense and harm the communities in question by perpetuating harmful ideologies or by not scrutinizing and questioning them. While we don’t want to shy away from authors sharing diverging perspectives, we recognize that it is important to take editorial care to be sensitive to others’ feelings and concerns. We may not always be successful in resolving this tension in a way that is satisfying to all, and we must recognize that we will make mistakes.
Because we want to hear what readers say, we welcome conversation. Whether a longtime subscriber or new to the magazine, we want to have more voices in the conversation. Here are links to other articles addressing different aspects of being transgender.
We welcome your comments about these issues. Those interested in writing an article for the website, a subsequent print edition, or a letter to the editor, are encouraged to do so.
Voice Male is committed to both stepping up and stepping back. It is the nature of our work to try to remember to check ourselves, using moments like this one as an opportunity to learn and grow as activists and allies. It is our responsibility to hold ourselves accountable and honor the voices that are so often silenced.
—Rob Okun, Editor