Friday, 13 November 2015

Caitlyn Jenner: I Ain't Cait

Caitlyn Jenner, leaving a speaking engagement in Chicago today, encountered some angry protesters who called her “an insult to trans people” and “an insult to women.”

Jenner gave a luncheon address at a Hilton hotel as part of a fundraising event for Chicago House, a nonprofit that was established in the 1980s to provide housing and case management to people with HIV or AIDS and expanded in 2013 with the TransLife Center, a program offering supportive housing and social services to transgender people, regardless of HIV status.

But protesters said Jenner was not an appropriate representative for transgender people, given that she is a wealthy white woman and has made some disparaging comments about people who receive public assistance. They also accused Chicago House of marginalizing trans people of color.

“Make the services and make this movement and this plea for trans tolerance intentional and direct for the people who are facing the violence every day on the streets, the people who are being discriminated against on the basis of their gender and their race at the same time,” protester Monica James told the Chicago Tribune. “She can’t speak to those struggles. It defaces the real truth behind transitioning.” James held a sign reading, “Liberation not miss-representation.”

James briefly spoke with Jenner, talking about her struggles to find employment. Jenner responded, “I would love to see you have a job. I love you,” then was escorted to a van by her security team, the Tribune reports.

“I understand her saying that and having her perspective, but that's just one perspective,” James told the paper. “Now we're asking them to come and get the rest of our perspectives and then make a comprehensive package of how we're going to try to merge these people into mainstream society with equal rights and equal benefits.”

Organizers of the protest, dubbed “I Ain’t Cait,” set up a Facebook page to draw participants to the demonstration and included a quote from Jenner on her reality TV series I Am Cait, regarding users of social services: “You don’t want people to get totally dependent on it. That’s when they get into trouble. ‘Why should I work? You know, I’ve got a few bucks, I’ve got my room paid for.’”

The page described Jenner as “a clueless rich white woman who thinks disenfranchised trans women of color should just pluck themselves up off the street and stop being so lazy.” A protester at the event could be heard calling her “an insult to trans people” and “an insult to women,” according to Entertainment Tonight. ...

The Advocate.

See also the Advocate stories LGBT Republican Group Makes Caitlyn Jenner Its Poster Woman, and The Right Wing Dissing Of Caitlyn Jenner Begins.

Strange days indeed...

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