Sex/Gender Outsiders, Hate Speech, and Freedom of Expression: Can They Say That about Me?

By Martha T. Zingo | Go to book overview

insofar as "men fear. . . that [they] could be allowed sexual and emotional. . . access to women only on women's terms, otherwise [they will be] left on the periphery of the matrix;" 38 female-to-male transgenderists are viewed as encroaching on and usurping male privilege as well as undermining the authority and position of men within society. 39 Thus, the very existence of sex/gender outsiders and the accompanying condemnation of their gender identity or affectional orientation/preference reflects the hierarchy of men's and women's gender roles and the historic patriarchal 40 assumptions regarding male/female sex roles. 41 Traditional sex, gender, and affectional orientation/preference roles are elevated, as a matter of course, at the expense of sex/gender outsiders. Through the devaluation of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgenderists, all who deviate from or fail to conform to the stereotypical behaviors, attitudes, and expression decreed appropriate for men and women or males and females, become suspect and are penalized. Such individuals are perceived as threats to the fixity of sexual boundaries and to the privileging of the heterosexual viewpoint. 42 By contesting and making problematic the symbolic and ideological boundaries of gender identity and affectional orientation/preference, sex/gender outsiders expose the underlying socio-political dimensions of both. Attempts to confine such concepts as "normal" or "natural" to a single affectional orientation/preference, a binary expression of sex and gender, or to the definitions currently provided by the dominant discourse become much more difficult with the existence of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgenderists. As a consequence, sex/gender outsiders can be neither acknowledged nor legitimated without simultaneously challenging and disrupting the dominant culture.

This book seeks to explore the impact of hate speech laws through a lens that focuses predominantly on the experiences of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgenderists, in order to make evident the potential ramifications of hate speech restrictions, as a general policy, for sex/gender outsiders. The arguments on all sides of the hate speech debate (civil libertarians, civil rights adherents, and accomodationists) are critically examined in terms of the social and legal protection available to sex/gender outsiders. First, however, Chapter Two provides an historical overview of free speech jurisprudence and explains the importance of free expression to sex/gender outsiders. Chapter Three analyzes equality jurisprudence arising under the Equal Protection Clause and Title VII, and explores the interconnections between status based on religion and that based on gender identity or affectional orientation/preference. Chapter Four scrutinizes the National Endowment for the Arts controversy and the Hate Crimes Statistics Act, in the context of the harm lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgenderists ex-

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Sex/Gender Outsiders, Hate Speech, and Freedom of Expression: Can They Say That about Me?
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Chapter 1 - Social and Legal Condition of "Outsiders" 1
  • Notes 7
  • Chapter 2 - Free Speech and the Hate Speech Controversy 17
  • Notes 42
  • Chapter 3 - Equality Jurisprudence and Suspect Classifications 51
  • Notes 82
  • Chapter 4 - Speech, Hate, and (non-) Discrimination 101
  • Notes 127
  • Chapter 5 - Judicial Response to Hate Regulations 139
  • Notes 168
  • Chapter 6 - Conclusion 177
  • Notes 181
  • Bibliography 183
  • Index 211
  • About the Author *
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