Equality Michigan Starts Petition To Change Michfest Trans Exclusion Policy
By BTL Staff
Originally printed 7/31/2014 (Issue 2231 - 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.
- ALERT Missing Person In Metro Detroit
- A Remembrance: Robert Clark
- New LGBT Tobacco Disparity Report For Michigan Released
- Representation: Trans Activism In Michigan Lame Duck
- Between Bass And Treble: An Alto Story
- Local Gatherings Against MiRFRA
- Call To Action: Petition Seeks To Stop MIRFRA
- Top Faith Leaders Discuss Religious Freedom, LGBT Inclusion
- The First Trans Helpline In USA Is In Michigan
- LGBT Judge To Speak At Ann Arbor Interfaith Service
- Gay Therapist Discusses Sexualities Of LGBT And Straight Men In New Book
- Affirmations Seeks LGBTQ-Friendly Healthcare Providers
- Ruth Ellis Center Celebrates 15 Years Serving LGBTQ Youth
- The Rise Of 'License To Discriminate'; The Failure Of LGBT Civil Rights
- State Civil Rights Amendment Dead, Says Speaker
- WCC Expands LGBT Protections
- PrEP Debate Continues As Advocates Hold Conversations In State
- 'KICK' Off The Holidays With Annual Gala In Detroit
- Foster Children's Charity Collecting New Toys, Gifts For Holiday Bazaar
- Right Reverend Wendell Gibbs To Speak On Marriage Equality
- Affirmations Hosts Information Session On LGBT Foster Parenting And Adoption
- The Dearborn Inn
- The Inn on Ferry Street
- Good Cakes and Bakes
- Kitchen & Bath
- Infusion Showrooms
- Plants & Patios, Inc.
- Moving Companies
- Religious & Spiritual
- Gays in Faith Together
- Social/Community Organizations
- Black Pride Society, Inc.
- Solar Energy
- AJ Leo Electric & Solar
- Ann Arbor Animal Hospital
Enter contests to win great prizes like CDs, DVDs, concert tickets and more
- Exclusive! 'Looking' Star Russell Tovey On Sex Scenes, His Famous Butt & That Rimming Cake
- Q&A: Andy Cohen On His (Almost) Tell-All Book, 'Nasty' Names Gays Call Him
- Divine Intervention: Bette Midler Talks Early Gay Support, 'Diva' Degradation & Twerking ('Girls, Please!')
- Creep of the Week: The Duggars
- Being Young & Coming Out To Bette Midler
Sign up to receive our weekly newsletters today!
A study published in the journal The Lancet HIV reports that there is a significant disparity in HIV prevalence between black and white men who have sex with men. The study was published on Nov. 18 and found a startling 32 percent prevalence rate for black men who have sex with men, compared with only eight percent for white men who have sex with men.View More World AIDS Day
This Week's Issue
Download or view this week's print issue today!
Sign up to receive our weekly newsletters today!