And I wasn’t there, so I can’t know what the situation actually was. But going by this quote, “I was wearing heeled boots, tight distressed jeans, a striped cami that made my breasts look great, and my usual eyeliner and purple lipstick combo,” I presumed Riley was presently pretty obviously as a woman.

I could be wrong, of course.

I’ve just found myself in too many situations where a person like that server used misgendering to attack, motivated not by confusion but by hostility or incivility.

I’m not saying the proper response should be “in kind,” but it’s worth thinking about framing misgendering as a failure of kindness — at least where it appears to be intentional.

My two cents, anyway, not that that’ll buy you a coffee these days.

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot. jamesfinnwrites@gmail.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store