Politically, I'm just not sure it's wise to discourage 98% of humanity from understanding or relating to the 1.7% of humanity who identify as transgender. How does that help the cause of furthering trans liberation or acceptance? On the contrary, it would seem really important to help those you need for support to understand the transgender experience. Empathy is often the basis of compassion and mutual support. Why would you discourage that?
M. J. Murphy
You were, in fact, the exact intended audience of this piece, and this response convinces me of nothing more than that the piece was necessary.
Did you actually read the piece, or just the title? If you read the piece you may realize that you are the exact kind of cis person I am describing — in fact, you have made your career partially off of speaking about trans issues, yet you will come onto a piece by a trans person about how empathy is not the same as understanding, and tell me I’m bad for my own liberation?
You do not speak for me. And you do not listen to those you claim to speak for.
Cis empathy is essential for trans liberation. Cis understanding of being trans is impossible, and the myth that it is possible leads to cis allies — like you — believing that you have every right to speak over us about our own experiences.