Banned: Stone Butch Blues

Banned: Stone Butch Blues

An Account of A Reading, Part 2

So about the actual reading itself: Stone Butch Blues addresses not only gender identity and queer issues, but also how those issues interact with class and race issues, and how the folks who are working for justice within their communities often don't make efforts
to reach out across race and class lines. I might have heard a little nervous throat clearing from the audience there.

A lot of my comedy material is about my apparently confusing gender presentation. The reason I can do this material and make people laugh (rather than try and kill me) is because people like Leslie Feinberg (and many many folks we'll never know about) spent years standing up, getting their asses kicked, and standing up again.

I read from two sections: one of the post bar raid jailhouse rape incidents, and then a scene where Theresa is cleaning up Jess afterwards. Folks were definitely paying attention and seemed receptive. I left all the hard to hear parts in and when a guy came up to me after the reading and said "thank god that doesn't happen anymore" I responded "well..." and he said "not in Philadelphia" and I said (thinking about incidents from last fall and how cops harass even the outreach workers who give out condoms to the sex workers on 13th street) "Well, not so much. Not if you're white." He made a really weird face and walked away quickly. Later, when I was recounting the story, my nephew observed "he probably wanted you to make a joke."