My Worst Nightmare Lunch with Coworkers and the “Maury Show – Man or Women?”

Imagine when approaching your break room for lunch to be greeted with shouts “oh no I won’t do that, he’s really guy’ and a non stop cascade of laughter and jeers as coworkers compared factual features and body types of contestants as they tried to ‘trick’ the studio audience into believing they were born woman.
Maury Show – Man or Women?

To a cisgender man or woman this maybe great fun. To a transgender person who has just started working part time after being unemployed and homeless for 8 months, this is your worst nightmare.

To put this into context. Imagine that you are one of the many ethnic people who were in the break room and were compelled to remain quite as coworkers bet on a contest if your parents and family were “Real Americans” by determining if their backs were wet or dry. Winner remains, losers shipped to a ‘resettlement’ camp or homelessness.

Or maybe you were a informed intelligent person in the break room or perhaps a closeted homosexual. Either way you could not hold my gaze as I stood in front of the TV and explained why I was so insulted by this show.

Do the last two scenarios seem a little ridiculous? That is true. Human rights have been earned and laws enacted that require society to respect ethnicity. It is expected and required.

Closeted homosexuals are so scared to be ‘outed’ they are among the most homophobic, transphobic and shameful of all and remain indiscernible to most.

Transgender people do not have that respect yet. Unlike LGB people most of us do not have the option of invisablity. However, transgender people are striving towards workplace equity with ENDA. Unfortunately there will be Judases like these people on the Maury Show who would sell their humanity for money and a chance for momentary fame.

Until societies mores change I will be compelled to stand up for my dignity and human rights whether it is in a break room, a transphobic Church or a bigoted politician.

Today I am meeting with HR to explain my mysterious I behaviour in the Lunch room that day. I will answer why I shut the TV off after what may have seemed to some in the room as irrational behaviour.

Wish me luck.

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Kelli Busey an outspoken gonzo style journalist has been writing since 2007. In 2008, she brought the Dallas Advocate on-line and has articles published by the Reconciling Ministries Network, The Transsexual Menace, The Daily Kos, Frock Magazine the TransAdvocate, the Dallas Voice and The Advocate. Kelli, an avid runner is editor in chief at Planet Transgender which she founded in 2007.

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3 Responses to My Worst Nightmare Lunch with Coworkers and the “Maury Show – Man or Women?”

  1. Lori D September 18, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    A surprising and welcome view of your personal side, this post angered me as well. I don’t know how old that particular episode is or if Maury’s still doing these “Man or Woman” segments, but the very title is insulting and demeaning. Of course they’re all pretty people, but referring to them as men (unless they want to be called that) doesn’t help anything. I think you did the right thing.

  2. Kelli Anne Busey September 18, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    Thanks Lori, that means allot to me coming from you.
    I’ve had such a horrendous year financially I’ve tried to separate my misfortunes from my ‘newsy’ blog. Writing this post helps me to prepare the meeting but it also puts my personal life in public view. I decided to post it becuse it fits so neatly into our struggle for equality in the workplace.

  3. Kelli Anne Busey September 19, 2009 at 1:52 am

    Hey friends, the meeting went very well. My employer really lived up to their high standards today.