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Sometimes the stove is hotter than you expected


So, I recently decided that I would dip my toe back into a Q&A site, Stack Exchange's Photography site, where I was once a moderator... turns out, the stove was hot and I got burned by it. Content warning: transphobic slurs in an image.

I know we're in a world where human decency and respect for our individual journeys is often put aside in the name of bigotry and I see lots of it. It's a sad part of the trans experience to realize that there are people in the world who will hate you for the simple act of existing as who you are. They could hate you because of your race, your religion, your sexuality, or your gender and sometimes all of the above.

I read Twitter, probably more than I should, and not a day goes by that I don't see frothing transphobic bigotry, usually out of the UK and often by media or people in power, and it deeply bothers me. I am saddened that a place I had spent so much time in, London, is effectively closed off to me now. Similarly, there are States in the US that are also now closed to me and some even have family members in them.

Suffice to say, I see it. Yet, it's entirely a different thing to have it directed specifically at you. I know I have been a bit sheltered, coming out as I have during the pandemic, but I've had a few incidents happen that have shook me and more of these, I am sure, will follow. While the person that did this one is not one I likely considered specifically a friend, it is someone who I would have some friendly discussions with, chatting about photography, and that is leaving me wondering if I should just walk away again.

Here's what they posted:

I masked my deadname more for my benefit, but it wouldn't be that hard to figure it out on the site. To be fair, even then, it's becoming less of a sore point as my life moves forward and my legal identity is established.

What bothers me about this, most of all, is that they took the coward's route here. This was posted as an answer to an 11 year old question I asked, knowing that I would be notified on the site and see it. They did it with a sock puppet account rather than share with me, and the world, who they are. Being a bigot is bad enough, but a cowardly bigot, unable to own it? Says even more about them and none of it is good.

I'm trying to decide if I will remain on the site again. Some have mentioned that I shouldn't let someone like this drive me away, which is very true, I should not. Nevertheless, I left the site because I was tired of some of the aspects of it, especially as a moderator, and now the site seems to be fading and I just don't know if it's worth it anymore. I will say, I am heartened by the swift reaction of the staff at Stack, the post has been deleted and they are investigating. The source of this is message is not a newbie and there are some regional clues. I may stay a bit yet and see.

Comments

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