Equality Michigan Starts Petition To Change Michfest Trans Exclusion Policy
By BTL Staff
Originally printed 7/28/2014 (Issue 2230 - Between The Lines News)
Twenty-three years ago Nancy Burkholder was asked to leave the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival because she was not a "womyn-born-womyn." Since then, debate has taken place with festival owner Lisa Vogel and organizers of the festival and community members and artists across the country. On July 28, Equality Michigan called for an end to the "womyn-born-womyn" festival policy and is calling for and end to transgender exclusion at Michfest. It is asking the public to support the policy change by signing an online petition at http://eqmi.us/mwmf14.
"Finally, the reality is that the lesbian, gay and bisexual community cannot stand by any longer and pretend that any form of transgender discrimination can be painted over as a feminist or progressive issue. We must stand up, even if it is to our own, and make it clear that transgender women deserve to be treated as women in all settings. The comparison that a women's only festival is similar to a transgender only or people of color only event is offensive and unacceptable. The time has come; we are drawing a line in the sand, this 'intention' can no longer stand," reads the petition page.
Equality Michigan is asking for support through the petition page and asking the public to sign the petition which states, "We have listened to your arguments over the past 23 years, and feel that we have waited long enough for you to catch up to the rest of us. The time has come, this 'intention' must come to an end. Until that happens, we are committed to the following:
"1. Demanding you end the 'womyn-born-womyn' intention at Michigan Womyn's Music Festival.
2. Request that Lisa Vogel, as co-founder and owner, meet with leaders of the transgender community and enter the space with an open mind to the notion that transgender womyn are womyn too, and have shared in their experiences.
4. Asking artists and attendees to act in harmony with their equal rights values and NOT attend the festival until the transgender discrimination ends, and instead support other women's events which are creating a safe space for transgender women so they can join as well.
5. Requesting that any artists participating this year speak against the policy while on stage.
6. Make it clear to any artists and vendors participating in the future that until this policy ends, their participation will be seen as anti-transgender discrimination.
7. Share publicly a list of any future artists and vendors with entertainment venues and LGBT event producers with an explanation as to why they are seen as having committed anti-transgender discrimination."
Two viewpoints follow on the next page.
Equality Michigan Executive Director Emily Dievendorf has penned an op-ed,"Michfest Trans Exclusion Rooted In Prejudice and Ignorance" and can be read here.
Michigan transgender activist Zoe Steinfield has penned an op-ed, "Boycott Michfest Till Trans Inclusion A Reality" and can be read here.
Michigan Womyn's Festival owner and organizer Lisa Vogel previously wrote a "Letter To The Community" in April 2013 which can be read here.
- Love is Patient, Love is Kind: Local Couple Details Path to Altar
- JCC Book Fair Welcomes Jewish Gay Author
- 3 Michigan Cities Score Perfect 100 Rating in LGBT Inclusion Report
- Conversation On Bullying Empowers Students and Parents
- Freedom House Seeks Help for LGBT Refugees
- John Allen Paves Way for Brighter Future for LGBTQ Youth
- Detroit Police Officer Dani Woods Recipient of Equality Michigan Award
- Oakland County Clerk Lisa Brown Celebrates Same-Sex Marriages
- State Board: Lawyer with Anti-Gay Rants Committed Misconduct
- Holly Lanes Hosting LGBT and Friends Night to Connect Around Equality
- Community Demands Justice for LGBTQ Prisoners
- Village of Holly Votes 6-1 Against Human Rights Ordinance
- Attorney Faces LGBTQ Discrimination
- Progressive Groups Join Forces to Win Big in Election 2016
- Federal Law Protects Transgender People at Homeless Shelters
- LGBTQ Youth Need Inclusive Sex Education
- Urge Michigan Attorney General to Withdraw from Federal Lawsuit
- Anti-LGBTQ Smear Campaign Targets Eaton County Commissioner
- Jorgensen Ford
- MotorCity Casino
- Charter Yachts
- Infinity & Ovation Yacht Charters
- National Organizations
- American Civil Liberties Union, Lesbian and Gay Project
- Professional Organizations
- Michigan Gay Officers Action League
- Elsie Publishing
- Real Estate/Agent
- Keller Williiams Real Estate
- Religious & Spiritual
- St. Lukes Episcopal Church
- Substance Abuse
- Alcoholic Anonymous
Enter contests to win great prizes like CDs, DVDs, concert tickets and more
- Hillary Clinton's Commitment to LGBT Equality Stronger Than Ever
- 'Campfire' Opens at The Ringwald Theatre
- McCrory, Cooper Blast Each other on LGBT Law in Debate
- Unleashing Garrett Clayton: Actor on Studying Porn, Keeping His Sexuality Private & How His Latest Movie's Greatest Critic Brent Corrigan 'Let the Movie Get Made'
- Idina Menzel on Working Toward LGBT Icon Status, a Lesbian Elsa & Angry Gays Who Oppose Her 'Beaches' Remake
Sign up to receive our weekly newsletters today!
As an openly gay man, Fred Hoffman said, "I really didn't know if there would be an issue." And while he wasn't waving rainbow flags when he was recruited by Chrysler in 1988, he was told being gay wasn't a problem.View More Automotive
This Week's Issue
Download or view this week's print issue today!
Sign up to receive our weekly newsletters today!