Queer-feminist „Take Back The Night”-Demonstration 2014 Bremen

WomenLesbiansInterTrans*, we invite you to join the queer-feminist Take Back the Night Demo in Bremen at the 30th of April 2014. Together we want to (re-)claim the public sphere and make queer-feminist positions visible.

Why do we want to enter the street?
The society we live in is structured by different conditions of suppression, such as patriarchal, racist, sexist, just to mention a few. We think that sucks. To express our anger, we are planning to have a queer-feminist, loud and powerful demo.

In our society we are expected to be clearly recognizable as woman* or man* and act in accordance with the correlating gender-roles and identity patterns. These two gender identities are considered to be “normal” and are set as norms. Therefore all identities that differ from these two categories, for example Trans*- and Inter*-positions, are considered as deviant. Being ambiguous is regarded as abnormal and is – often violently – discriminated. The daily dictates to permanently classify oneself into these categories, for example in our IDs or at public toilets, show how powerful the construction of gender is. We claim the right to be ambiguous! We want to unmask these categories as constructions and make societal conditions imaginable that move beyond the binary gender order. We claim independent access to medical treatments without needing so-called experts who diagnose us as sick. We also reject arbitrary forced surgeries on babies to assign a certain gender immediately after birth.

We are constantly confronted with sexist advertisements and the omnipresent commercialization of especially the female body. These are part of the mechanisms that lead to the actual state that women are seen as objects. They also create ideals of beauty which produce a high pressure to match them, even though they don’t have anything to do with ordinary human bodies. We don’t want to be reduced to our bodies and we don’t want to be examined, judged and sexualized. We want to decide about our sexuality and bodies on our own. That includes the right to have the free choice for an abortion. We want to define our bodily boundaries and we want them to be respected.

In most cases sexualized violence is committed by cis-men. About every third woman* and every third Trans*person is affected by that in her_his life. Most of these incidents are happening in the so called safe and sound families, marriages, relationships and friendships and are therefore not seen or heard. But we also have to face the threat of experiencing sexualized and/or discriminating violence and sexism in public, in bars or at the streets. Who is able to move where and when without fear? Who can behave in which ways freely? Who can kiss or hold hands with whom in public without being worried? Starred at… being scanned… getting chatted up… downgrading judgments… being touched… being smiled at… Aarrrgh! STOP!!!
On the 30th of April we will go to the streets together and take back the space which is dominated by partying cis-men on evenings like that. We want to be able to move freely and self-determined – whenever, wherever and however we like to!

The weird idea that there are only two sexes is followed by the assumption that heterosexuality is the most natural thing in the world. Who should we desire? Heterosexuality is set as an invisible norm. It enforces to name homo-, bi-, queer, poly-, a- and other sexual identities. We want to love, desire and like whoever we want. We don’t want a sexuality to be assigned to us from the first. We want to choose and live our sexuality self-determined. We want to smooch in public with who we want, where we want and whenever we want to. It is our own decision, if we desire many people, one person or none, as well as it is our decision how we express our desire.

The two approved sexes “woman” and “man” are constructed as oppositional total packages with certain attributes, behaviors, looks, abilities and spheres of responsibilities. The relation between them is hierarchic. In this society manhood is considered as the norm. Alleged male characteristics are judged as positive, alleged female characteristics are devaluated. This appears in the entanglement of patriarchic structures and capitalism, too: women* still get assigned to the reproductive field. This means that particularly women* are supposed to be in charge of child-rearing, household and care work. The reproductive work is usually devaluated and even unpaid. Most women are bearing a double burden of paid work and reproductive work. We won´t take low wages and the lack of appreciation anymore – neither in the public nor in the private field. We want different models of work, families and relationships, in which ourselves and our needs become visible.
But… women can also build their careers, don´t they?! Yes, some women can afford to solve the problem of reproductive work in the private. In many cases these tasks are done by multiple discriminated women*. That doesn’t change the system. The problem is shifted from a sexist structure to a structure in which sexism and racism are interrelated. This example shows that relations of oppression are closely entangled. They can stabilize each other or be pitted against each other. Solidary feminism must fight against any kind of oppression and domination.

In our society there is a whole web of power relations, in which people are positioned differently. The different conditions of oppression do not only exist next to each other, but are interrelated and create their own forms of discrimination. That means that some people experience multiple forms of discrimination, while some people are privileged in multiple ways and benefit from that. In our society middle-class, able-bodied, white, german, heterosexual cis-men are the ones who are very likely to have the most privileges. For them it’s easier to enter societal areas, such as powerful positions in politics, science or economics. At the same time they are represented in manifold ways in the media. Of course that doesn’t mean that all men are privileged in the same ways just as it doesn’t mean that all WomenLesbiansInterTrans*people share the same experiences of discrimination. We are aware that also in our demo preparation group the division of privileges isn’t even and that we are differently affected by power relations. That might lead to a situation in which some positions are more represented than others. We will try to create a safe area which is empowering for everyone but we are aware of the fact that this possibly doesn’t apply for all WomenLesbiansInterTrans* in their manifold positions in the same ways.

Both in the preparation time and at the demo itself we try to create a space in which we can share ideas, try things and get to know other WomenLesbiansInterTrans*. We wish for a space in which many concepts of gender and desire can be acted out apart from a division of tasks that put women* into the kitchen and men* to the microphone and the first row of the demo. We are glad about mixed feminist groups and actions of solidarity together with cis-men at other occasions but on this day we WomenLesbiansInterTrans* want to subvert our negative affections of patriarchal, sexist, trans- and homophobic conditions in a self-empowering way and go to the streets furiously and fiercely without cis-men!

This day shall be ours!

Let’s queer the streets and shatter the dominating circumstances – for a world without oppression and for a self-determined life for everyone!

Glossary:

A cis-man is a person who was classified to be a boy at birth and who lives and wants to be recognized as a man.

Women* and men*: the star shall point out that the categories “woman” and “man” are not natural but socially constructed. The star stands for the point of view that there is not just consistent model of being a “man” or a “woman” but many different concepts.

Trans*: is the term which describes people who transgress the gender identity they were assigned to at their birth.

Inter*: is the term which describes people whose sex characteristics (e. g. genitals) are not distinct “female” or “male”.

Patriarchy is the societal and structural establishment of male supremacy, which appears in many different ways: for example the division of wealth and power, the definition of values and norms, as well as the use of language.

Workshops: 3 pm
Dinner: 6 pm
Plenary: 7 pm
Demo: 8 pm

Info: tbtn2014bremen.blogsport.de
For possibilities to sleep over or child care contact: takebackthenight2014@riseup.net

Take Back the Night!