i use the word “whitegenderconforming” to describe POC who have to ascribe to white cis ideals to survive
the rest of us are our indigenous genders, genderescent, genderessence
i’ve had a lot of thoughts about this for a few years and always felt incredibly uncomfortable around white trans people and white dominated trans spaces
because they are violently white supremacist spaces that appropriate our struggles for rhetoric and political points and talking about how “oppressed” they are
i’ve recognized that femmes, femininity, mothers, can exist in all bodies of people of color, and that they are highly respected by POC because of the community that needs to exist to survive white supremacy. this is why family is important to us. this is why we don’t cut out the family that treats us like shit because we need support from people who understand our experiences by way of having the similar skin color and/or cultures.
this is also why trans people of color, particularly those who were labeled female by the white medical industrial complex when they were born, still “identify” with women of color
and why many of us celebrate our genderessence and indigenous genders by adorning ourselves with these markers of support and bayanihan and love and safety
i have recognized that i do not connect in any way to white people who value glittery labels and internet rhetoric over the lived experiences of people of color
it just doesn’t make sense to me because of the makibaka necessary to survive as a person of color, and particularly as a person of color who openly defies the white colonialist gender binary.
that is clearly more valuable than the words you use. and that POC have to learn from the moment we are born to use visual signals to determine our safety: which is why we react immediately when we see a white person with dreads, or violently white supremacist tattoos, or white people with tattoos in general, white people with stretched ears and other body modifications, who complain on the internet about how “oppressed” they are and then try to catch a POC who calls them out on anything they can find to somehow justify their white supremacy
that body modification through hormones or tattoos or piercings or surgeries or clothes or makeup—
for people of color and indigenous peoples is about reclaiming and redefining the body that has been beaten and raped and abused and using it to heal yourself and your trauma
and when we see white people use these healing tools for people like us who have survived white supremacy, we are understandably reactionary and upset because it takes those signals of safety and resistance, it steals them, and commodifies our cultures.
I elsewhere called it “Whiteness Assigned Gender” (or WAG).
ha, I’ve recently been trying to come up with my own phrase/term to address both how my designated gender and my sexuality period is white defined, and does this back and forth wriggle between the definition that applies to white peoples and the stereotypes that apply to black peoples.
I think something like WAG could work (if you wanted it to) ‘cause it is about not only trying to conform to *white* standards but also the stereotypes that whiteness assigns to your race. The double burden of both trying to approximate whiteness and not confirm stereotypes.