Storify: Cis Actors in Trans Roles

Storify is shutting down in May and has informed users that we have to migrate our content elsewhere if we wish to save it. This is one of my old threads. 

Content Note: Violent Transphobia.

Cis Actors in Trans Roles: My thoughts on the upcoming movie "Anything" produced by Mark Ruffalo with Matt Bomer playing a trans woman.

Okay, here is a thread of things people need to STOP saying re: cis actors taking trans character roles.

"Maybe no trans actors applied for the job." They did. Even if they hadn't, they should have been actively sought. If you cannot get a trans person to take the role, SHELVE THE SCRIPT until you find out why and can fix it.

"Maybe the cis actor was the best for the role." They are not. Even if they were, there are reasons to stop casting cis folks as trans.

"I don't blame the actor for taking the part." You should. Not taking trans roles is BASIC allyship from cis people.

"The cis actor is gay." Cis gayness is irrelevant to being trans.

"The cis actor is LBGTQ." No, they literally fucking are not. Cis people are not "LBGTQ". There's a T in that acronym.

"Maybe they didn't know this was bad to do." They were told. Even if they were not, it's a basic google search away when researching a character.

"Maybe they'll listen. They've been good on [other issue affecting cis people]." Trans bigotry isn't cancelled out by other activism.

"Maybe they'll listen anyway." They're batting zero on listening so far. Just because YOU just found out about this doesn't mean THEY have.

Stop worshiping Ruffalo because he was a Bernie fan, and Bomer because you loved Magic Mike XXL. STOP. I liked Magic Mike XXL too, that doesn't mean the actors involved haven't said and done misogynistic and/or transphobic things. People can be BOTH bigots AND attractive to look at / listen to / watch on the silver screen.

You don't have to throw all your Ruffalo and Bomer movies into a bonfire! Just stop defending their latest bigoted trashfire! Before you tweet a defense of Ruffalo/Bomer just quietly close the browser and go look at kitten pictures instead. IT IS THAT SIMPLE.

This is the bare minimum of allyship: knowing when to NOT TALK because this isn't your lane to speak up in. Thank you. (& god bless all of the cis people who DON'T do this. I see you and I thank you.)

Honestly, of all of these, the "Bomer is gay" take bothers me the most. A gay man should not be playing a straight woman. The ONLY reason he is doing so is because of bigotry. Straight trans women are not cis gay men, and the assumption that they are is getting them killed under "trans-panic" legal defenses.

Our legal system literally uses homophobia and transphobia--FEAR of gayness and transness--to murder trans women. So, yes, it is in fact a big fucking deal for gay dudes to play trans women. Do not give me this "I don't blame Bomer" bullshit. Ruffalo and Bomer could be using their money and influence to (a) cast a trans woman and (b) make noise about "trans panic" legal defenses.


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