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I'm quite sure I picked up the wrong one on my way out the door....

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Regarding the Recent Interview with Janet Mock on CNN

It may just be an impossibility for many of those who are cis-gender to ever truly understand the premise that a woman born biologically a boy was always a woman. The fact is, that there is a non-tangibility for the majority of the cis-gender population to understand what this means truly....because they have no reference point. Honestly, I think we need to be careful who we vilify because what one sees that may be considered as vilification may, in fact, just simply be true lack of understanding. Now, considering that it took me as an intelligent (so I am told) human being four decades to understand that my childhood experiences actually paralleled that of most biologically born girls rather than as most biologically born boys and that my identity was always as female is likely a harbinger as to what we might expect from a cis-gender person who has ZERO concept likely of what the true difference is between gender and biological sex. Personally, I am not entirely sure that we will ever be successful in being able to frame a point of reference that is even close to understandable because of this. True enough that the media ticker tape of "use to be a boy" flashing on the bottom of the screen does trivialize the intent of the mission she is trying to accomplish as a person and adds unnecessary sensationalism. The likely culprit there however is more likely the network "packaging:" this and in this case, the network and the show's producers would be lax here for taking a myopic viewpoint rather than focusing on the crux of the points she was TRYING to convey.

Link to the Janet Mock INterview with Piers Morgan on CNN 

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Enlighten me please. Having written her bio/profile via Marie Claire, entitled, "I Was Born a Boy", and now promoting a book entitled, "Redefining Reality", just what am I missing?

Anonymous said...

Enlighten me please. Having written her bio/profile via Marie Claire, entitled, "I Was Born a Boy", and now promoting a book entitled, "Redefining Reality", just what am I missing?

Victoria Price said...

I love Janet Mock. I still do. And appearing on a national show would have to be nerve-wracking and scary. On her first appearance I was waiting for her to say something when Piers kept saying she grew up as a boy. But she didn't. When they broke and came back I thought maybe she would have said soothing to him but didn't seem to change the interview direction. Maybe she was starstruck. It was disappointing to see or hear from Piers she did not address her concerns with him immediately or personally and instead went twitter on the show. I do understand his perplexed reaction. Maybe she was misuoted in Marie Claire as saying she grew up as a boy. She just never seemed to acknowledge it. Unfortunately it did not really seem to get resolved on her second appearance. It just seems she was trying to be too "nuanced" for her own good to get her message across about fighting for the rights and raising awareness of transgendered people and their struggles. But there was a definite disconnect on what she had hoped to convey to Piers and the audience and what they heard. He seemed more obsessed with wether she looked more like Janet Jackson or Beyonce to get to topics such as violence and discrimination against the transgender community and Janet did not seem focused on getting to that message.

Christen Bustani said...

Victoria.... I feel your comment mirrors what I was sensing as well..... exactly. I wanted to open a dialog to get a sense if what I was thinking and feeling about the interview, about Janet's presentation and Piers questions were in line with anyone elses impressions. Apparently this is so I am finding. There are nuances that I see you picked up.... Nuances that require a relatively omniscient third-person detached, impartial, frame of thought. Looking at all the pieces, I believe we have more of what I surmise as a composite failure arising from multiple single issues colliding just right....

1) Not setting standards for questioning in the interview prior to the interview

2) Janet not bringing these points up at the time of the interview

3) Piers not being sensitive to the types of questions and target topic of the interview....Possibility of sheer ignorance here as it seems to be for many in the cis-gender community. This is where a "sit-down" tactical meeting to go over terminology and ideology would be better up front BEFORE the interview in order to eliminate any possibility of this for WHATEVER reason.

3) Janet taking this to Twitter after and working post-interview to start the fire later.

4) An inability to communicate in the follow-up interview in such a way that others "got it". True here that because Piers had his reputation on the line, there was little room to gain anything but to try to maintain his own credibility. Again, there should have been, it at all possible, a "sit down" strategic pre-interview to establish goals and outline the format of the interview.

Personally.... without having the opportunity to work with the host and the network to secure a format of the proposed discussion, I would not feel comfortable personally to be in one.

Certainly, it was very insensitive of the networks to be bannering across the bottoms of the screen.... "Used to be a boy". that's just sheer sensationalism on the part of the network there. An appropriate banner would have read something like: "Has written groundbreaking book helping others" or the equivalent instead of focusing on a banner that makes important that the person has had their plumbing system rearranged.

Victoria Price said...

Well I guess if we have learned anything, clearly it is a that you and I need to be on her strategic planning and advance team! :)

Liz said...

Interesting analyses ... I thought that it was disingenuous of Ms. Mock to go to twitter to complain about CNN and Morgan for doing their jobs, for plugging her book which, let's face it, would probably not have been published had she not grown up physically male.

I do not blame Morgan for being angry ... he is a trans supporter who got trashed for what can only seem to him to be crass publicity seeking.

We have to stop trashing our supporters.

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