Thursday, September 29, 2016

Terf wars

I'm trying to figure out ...

Chloe Allen was recently widely reported as the first female infantry soldier in Britain. She is trans and came out after being discovered cross-dressing. She says she's glad it's panned out that way and is now undergoing hormone treatment. Which is great. Under recently changed rules, she gets to stay in post. Which is also great.

What I struggle with, is this - does it skew the picture for cis women to have someone taking that 'first' who didn't have the same set of challenges? Chloe certainly had (and has) her own challenges, but to get in post had a male physique and didn't face the sexism etc that cis women haven't yet even had the chance to deal with. The first possible intake of cis women to train for the infantry isn't until Nov this year, as I understand it.

I guess my misgiving is that it sort of looks like we're already there in equality / opportunities, but that's yet to be seen - and it erases the struggles that cis women face in the same situation. And I don't know, someone who 'passes' then comes out later in life isn't perhaps paving the way for other women - it's not a case of the glass ceiling being broken, so much as circumvented?

Does this make me a TERF? I like to think of myself as 'right on' and as an intersectional feminist, but I'm struggling with this.

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