As the news about Against Me!'s Tom Gabel has spread around the punk community, all of us have had some sort of reaction and response to it. We'd like to thank our users for a polite and respectful discussion on the matter. Another human's personal decision, no matter how many great punk songs they wrote, should be made with the purpose of making them happy and comfortable in their own life and in their own skin. No decision like this should inspire hate and bigotry, and we're happy to be seeing very little of that in our community last night and today. A lot of musicians and industry folk have expressed their own opinions and support, and we've decided to collect some of them. We'd like to direct you to this blog from Brian Fallon of The Gaslight Anthem, which is a great read, and AltPress.com's web editor, Bryne Yancey, has also posted a blog that I feel expresses the sentiment that many of us in the community are feeling. If you head to the replies, you'll see a gathering of Twitter screenshots from musicians showing their support. Got a blog or tweet that we should include? Leave it in the replies.
A few staff members are keeping an eye out for tweets and blogs. We can't find everything, so if you see something that should be included, post a screenshot of a tweet or a link and blurb from a blog. We're happy to keep updating the first post with new stuff.
Brian (I'm assuming its him. It sounds like him)'s post brings up an interesting point: the number of people trying to be 'extra' sensitive and demand that everyone refer to Tom/Laura as only Laura and only use female pronouns. While I'm thrilled with the greater punk communities response to Tom/Laura's decision, some of these people are really starting to get to me.
No one (or at least most people aren't) is *trying* to be insensitive through their choice of pronouns. Also technically his legal name is still Tom. Sure its probably best to use Laura/female pronouns, but acting offended if people don't? No one is talking about you, they are talking about Tom/Laura, so why are you offended? We live in a society where while most of us accept transgendered people, the concept is still 'weird' (not in a bad sense, just in a 'weird' sense) to most of us. So just like everyone should be accepting of Tom/Laura's decision, people should also be accepting of the concept that most people aren't really sure the proper words to refer to him/her. Effort and intent are what matters here.
On a semi related note, I don't understand how anyone can think this is a joke.
I'm sure at least 80% of us when we first heard this thought "Wait, this is an onion article or something, right? There is no way this can be real! No? Oh... well I guess that's pretty cool. Now just let me pick my jaw up off the floor"