to prevailing conditions of male dominance. Moving in that directionis my aim here. What follows is a feminist analysis that, whilerelevant to Festival, does not seek to reconcile what may well befundamentally irreconcilable positions being played out around andat Festival. My analysis does not take for granted the S/Mmovement's and Camp Trans' definition of what is in women'sinterests. From a feminist perspective, sexuality and gender identity(both as currently constructed) are tools of male dominance thatbenefit patriarchy. That both, as currently constructed, give each of us as individuals a stake in male dominance is the conflict weexperience every day. Thus, we as feminists owe it to ourselves andto our community to deconstruct and oppose both S/M and CampTrans politics. In a feminist analysis they are, to put it simply, on thewrong side. In opposition to feminism.
Myths and Tactics
Lately, when these topics are brought up there is a flurry of opposition to discussing them in anything other than unqualifiedlypositive terms. That is, it is often difficult to say anything (or much of anything) critical about either S/M or transgender politics withoutbeing attacked or shouted down. The purpose of the attacks is,simply, to kill discourse and to silence any position that is not pro-S/M or transgender. Some of the most common tactics include theuse of "pro-sex" to describe S/M advocates and "anti-sex" todescribe those who are politically opposed to the practice of S/M.S/M opponents become "puritans" and "new victorians." S/Mopponents are often labeled "censors" simply for criticizing thepractice of S/M. Any critique of women's class condition is dismissedas "essentialism" by transgender activists. The word separatist isused by Camp Trans activists as an epithet, an epithet made moredamning by the addition of lesbian: lesbian-separatists. There isongoing use of "rights" talk - transgender persons have a "right" towomen-only space, S/M advocates have a "right" to practice S/Msex wherever and however they wish. Simply describing male power brings accusations of "victim feminism" and "denial of women'sagency." A Daly-esque reversal if there ever was one. And opposinginclusion of transgender persons in women-only space bringsaccusations of gender-fascism, a phrase which speaks volumes initself.
Minorities and Rights