What’s Current: Ruby Rose considered transitioning but realized she just wanted to be comfortable in her own skin

Ruby Rose, newest cast member in Orange is the New Black, explains that after many years of wanting to do gender-reassignment surgery, she changed her mind:

I started to change the way that I dressed and talked, and realized that I didn’t want to transition, I just wanted to be more comfortable in my own skin.

Photograph: teamjacksonmd via Flickr
It’s selfie time! Photograph: teamjacksonmd via Flickr

Doctors interrupt labour to take selfies next to women’s vaginas during childbirth.

Author and academic, Nathan Lean, suggests Fox News has found two formerly Islamic women to act as their spokespeople for pre-existing Islamophobic beliefs.

Academic Andrea Smith responds to long-standing claims that she is not, in fact, Native American.

Why the appearance of tennis champion Serena Williams’ body is still none of our business.

Jess Martin
Jess Martin

Jess Martin is a public relations professional, an aspiring writer, and an assistant editor at Feminist Current. She prefers to write about feminist topics, disability, or environmental issues, but could be persuaded to broaden her horizons in exchange for payment and/or food. In her spare time Jess can be found knitting, gardening, or lying in the fetal position, mulling over political theory that no one in their right mind cares about.

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  • Jonas

    That doctor student story made me disgusted. What the heck is the world coming too. I sure hope he will never be able to practice as a doctor anywhere in the future, behaving like that and also writing like that. Talk about having zero respect for your patients.

  • Tigermilk

    Wow, that Vice article gave me the absolute creeps, but seeing the picture in question in the article just made me so angry. I’m beginning to suspect that trained doctors are in fact aware of how restricting a woman’s movement and laying her flat on her back is not going to facilitate labour, and that it is done to make the doctor’s job quicker and/or easier.

    I mean, aren’t medical students instructed on how to treat patients with respect and compassion? I guess I’m feeling bewildered…god, that doctor thinks part of his job is to “reconstruct” women’s genitals after birth so that they’re “like new” – it’s this kind of arrogant, hateful thinking that doesn’t help to humanise the birthing experience, and is so far removed from reality. I read somewhere that, following birth, it can hurt to have sex for up to a year depending on the severity of tearing/cuts, and yet some doctors are still concerned about the “husband stitch”??? Isn’t that supposed to be a procedure that isn’t performed anymore?

    What I really wonder is, what on earth are men doing practising to become obstetricians and gynaecologists? Because they’re interested in how women’s bodies actually function, and want to promote woman-centred care? Or maybe it’s just another way for men to directly participate in immobilising and dehumanising women, taking control over their bodies and functions, speaking for them, telling them what’s best, causing them pain, traumatising them. Men, in my opinion, have no business being OB/GYNS.

    Having heard, seen, and read so much about obstetric violence, I have gradually become so terrified and put off from having children of my own, that I feel I’d need to seek counselling or something to get over my fear if I really did want to, one day.

    • Hannah

      Omg I thought I was the only one who was creeped out by male OB/GYNS. I will never, ever visit one and I can’t understand why women do when they have so many other options. Seriously, out of all specialties, what kind of man chooses that one? It just doesn’t make sense. Same with plastic surgery. I would never choose a male plastic surgeon, in both cases I need someone who understands what it is like to be female.

      • andeväsen

        Same. I would always choose female O&Gs and in order to make my choice easier I hope only females choose O&G in the future. In a genderless, patriarchiless world, I wouldn’t care about the genitals of my O&G, but while women’s bodies are held in contempt by both men and women, given a choice of whom to entrust my female body to, I’d take my chances with the woman.

        However I do understand why there are males in the speciality. Some males select the speciality for similar reasons that females select urology (it should be called ‘andrology’ but there’s another example of female-as-other) – because they find the physiology of the systems remarkable and interesting. More males than females progress, and progress faster, in all medical specialities, especially the surgical ones which includes O&G, because of the non-compliant-with-childcare hours which are needed to get ahead in surgery. The few radical feminists within medicine that I’ve come across have been female O&Gs. I wish I’d kept in touch with them but I was at university, didn’t know any better, did not realise how sadly rare this was.

    • EEU

      Horrifying! The ‘husband stitch’ sounds like a form of female genital mutilation to me. It’s so familiar to the way little girls are “stitched up” after having their genitals cut to have just a small hole to be penetrated. That’s how men and those doctors see women – holes to be fucked. They don’t see us as real human beings.

      • Rachel

        Gross, but you are so right! It is like female genital mutilation. As long as the husband gets his orgasm hey! Women are turned into glory holes even more than in the past. Not only do they have their own physical recovery to worry about, and a newborn baby to worry about, they are encouraged to get stitched up so the husband can have better sexy while he thinks about all the other ‘hot’ women he wants to bone, considering his wife is now ‘used up’. Just gross. Also, yea I have the same feelings about male gynos. I will never visit one and will never understand it.

    • vagabondi

      At best, a male ob/gyn is like a mechanic who has never driven a car. At worst, he’s gotta be some kind of terribly creepy fetishist or sadist. There is no good reason for a man to choose that specialty.

      • Missy

        I think you all are making some horrible assumptions about male ob/gyn’s. My father was trained in the field, we lived in a small town and he was the only doctor around for many miles. He delivered most of the town’s babies over a span of 35 years. He was loved by so many for his knowledge and compassion. He never charged anyone who couldn’t pay. He understood that vaginal health was very important to a woman’s overall health as a man’s penile health is very important to a man’s overall health. Most doctors are in it to help people maintain health not because they have some sick fantasies.

        • lizor

          I’m interested to know if your father was an OB/GYN, even though it sounds like he worked general/family practice, what were his reasons for choosing that specialty?

        • andeväsen

          Your father sounds like a respectful O&G who worked very hard for the women he served.

          However if there was a choice between equally trained, equally respectful, equally hard-working O&Gs, one male and one female, I’d prefer the female.

          Men – in order to see women as equals – need to actively decondition themselves from social conditioning which teaches them that women are inferior, women’s bodies are property belonging to [their husband]/[their baby]/[the public], women’s human worth is related to their reproductive outcome.

          This is a massive undertaking, and I think harder to do in our current media-saturated age with porn-saturated media than it was even a generation ago. This is true for even men in everyday interactions involving no physical contact, let alone in the highly intimate, potentially painful and injurious scenario of birth.

        • Mar Iguana

          Bullshit.

      • andeväsen

        Health care providers don’t have to live the conditions they treat. A brain surgeon needn’t have had a tumour herself to have an interest in doing the procedure.

        It’s not “not having a female reproductive system” that puts me off male O&Gs, but the fact that they are men raised in an echo-chamber world which constantly tells them females are worth less than males.

    • Lauren

      My husband is an amazing OB/GYN. He grew up on a farm and was responsible for delivering livestock from his teen years until he left for college. He knew he either wanted to be a veterinarian or deliver babies because he feels like birth is a miracle. He loves helping women through the entire experience. There are a lot of low income patients that see him at the hospital he works at. Some of these women are very scared and luckily they have him to guide them. He spends thousands of dollars of his own money every year on prenatal vitamins for his patients that can’t afford them. We get hundreds of greeting cards around the holidays from women who are so grateful. He delivered our daughter and I can see how it was like he was made for the job because He has such a calm and attentive personality. No he doesn’t have a vagina but he probably knows more about them than any woman posting on here.
      I met my husband through my sister who is also an OB/GYN and who also happens to be a lesbian. Are you thinking she has no business being an OB/GYN because she’s attracted to women?

      • Morag

        “I met my husband through my sister who is also an OB/GYN and who also happens to be a lesbian. Are you thinking she has no business being an OB/GYN because she’s attracted to women?”

        WTF? Does somebody have to unpack that offensive question for you, or can you think about it a little more?

      • Morag

        Feminist talk is offensive to amazing fathers and husbands and to the women who love them! It’s out of hand. It goes too far. Don’t you dare criticize the tradition of men becoming gynaecologists — just stop being paranoid and trust them and send them greeting cards instead! Oh, and don’t forget: Lesbians and heterosexual men are exactly the same, so if you are distrustful of one, you have to be distrustful of the other. It’s only fair. Equality now!

      • andeväsen

        “No he doesn’t have a vagina but he probably knows more about them than any woman posting on here.”

        His knowledge of the vagina and other organs is not the point. It’s great that the women he served vouch for him and that he attended you giving birth. That actually sounds amazing. But for me that is not the point.

        The discussion is about unequal positions of power between doctors and women giving birth (and women having gynaecology tests) and how women respond to them.

        In most doctor-patient relationships, the patient is poorer than the doctor. This undoubtably affects the dynamics of the interaction. Medical ethicists have published endless theses based on this economic and educational power imbalance and most medical school curricula at least touch upon this at the undergrad level. There is almost never an analysis of the power imbalance between male doctor and female patient which gets an airing at the undergrad level, let alone any discussion of the uniqueness of women’s reproductive organs being treated by male O&Gs in a patriarchy where women’s reproductive organs are the focus of so much misogyny.

        This is about women being structurally disempowered. It’s great that your husband is an amazing O&G, I personally know good male O&Gs. (I would still rather be treated by a good female O&G) But neither they nor your husband are the point. Do we really need to say #notall…?

        • Tigermilk

          I too was sensing the “not all” vibe. I don’t trust that men fully appreciate that there is a distinct experience of being female in this world; whenever I’ve tried speaking about it to men, the majority of the time they interrupt me, tell me I must be seeing things the wrong way, that they have problems too, and go on to redefine the experience that I just shared, expecting me to accept it. There’s power in that exchange no matter where men and women happen to find themselves.

          I think I can see how that translates to the delivery room. It’s like women’s bodies are seen as defective machines incapable of giving birth properly. A male doctor-female patient dynamic compounds this line of thought. The combination of professional authority with “male authority” makes me feel uneasy. No wonder there are countless instances of boundary violation during labour, in some cases leading to assault. Yet if your baby is fit and healthy, you’re supposed to shut up and be thankful??

          It seems so many women are denied the time and space to just listen to their bodies at such a time; doctors come in, assume control of the situation and expect the birthing mother to comply.

          Women feeling suspicious of men’s decisions to become OB/GYNs, and distrusting those that are, is to me, really no different from the persistent feelings of vulnerability towards men in all capacities. It reminds me of a time when I watched a show about a woman who helps to save local businesses from going under. Part of the problem of a particular car dealership was that their female customers didn’t feel safe going for test drives with men (it was solely male-staffed). All of the staff, bar one, were outraged and offended at how they could be considered capable of “taking advantage”. Their reaction is typical, along the lines of “How dare they offend my precious male feelings” rather than acknowledging they are the beneficiaries of a rigged and rotten social system. It’s like the same kind of offence is being taken towards women’s discomfort (to put it mildly) towards male OB/GYNs.

          • Mar Iguana

            The Inquisition: The gift that keeps on giving. To men.

          • andeväsen

            “The combination of professional authority with “male authority” makes me feel uneasy. No wonder there are countless instances of boundary violation during labour, in some cases leading to assault. Yet if your baby is fit and healthy, you’re supposed to shut up and be thankful??”

            Totally. You’re right that all interactions between adult men and women are coloured this way, and then each additional power imbalance (age, education level, economic class) has a patriarchal twist.

            In the O&G scenario, what’s more:
            (1) The actions of violent misogyny (rape and sexual assault i.e. body invasion, intentionally damaging female genitals and female reproductive organs) just so happen to be not very far removed from actions performed by O&G (vaginal examinations, episiotomy, sections [and obsolete/barbaric procedures such as symphysiotomy and ongoing/barbaric such as this “husband stitch” which I’ve never heard of until this article]).

            (2) Less directly violent misogyny – limiting women’s ability to terminate pregnancies, to avoid pregnancies, rights to their children (MRAs love to forget how children were legally their father’s property in many countries not many decades ago), rights while menstruating, access to menstrual hygiene – are all once again focussed on the female reproductive system, which is the focus of O&G.

            (3) Dialogue in the second stage of labour before an exam/procedure is even more time-constrianed than before most gynaecological exams/procedures between the woman and the health care giver (be it male or female, doctor or midwife). Much less time to understand why a procedure is being recommended, ask questions, think about it, ask more questions. One declarative sentence from the health care giver e.g. “I am going to make a cut because I am afraid you are about to tear” – and *snip* it has happened. As the labouring woman, you have to find some way to trust that they are acting in your best interest to justify this lack of choice.

            Of course health care givers can go some way in mitigating (3) – even in an emergency there are ways to ensure patients are fully involved in their own care. But as long as (1) and (2) are in action, they will continue to have an impact on (3), and the male O&G will always be my second choice.

      • Ellesar

        One has to sigh at the ignorance of you thinking that it is all about being sexually attracted to women as to why many women do not want to be examined by a male ob gyn!

        • Molly

          Or at the ignorance of distrusting men simply because one feels a power imbalance because well it’s “the patriarchy”. I wish more radical feminists were not so scared of men, I am rf and I’m not scared. But truly what is the reason for the constant fear mongering? So those around you will distrust men or so that you’ll go on doing what others want you to do. Free your minds.

          • Meghan Murphy

            I don’t think it’s realistic to expect women not to be afraid of men… Why on earth WOULDN’T we be afraid of men?

          • Molly

            That’s such a crappy answer Meghan. Let your fear go along with your bias.

          • Meghan Murphy

            Again, it’s not a ‘bias,’ it’s reality. Delusion won’t protect us from male violence.

          • Priscila

            What you’re doing is gaslighting. Telling women their fear is irrational when it’s in fact perfectly backed up by all evidence.

          • Molly

            There’s nothing radical about fear mongering.

          • Meghan Murphy

            Being afraid of men because men rape and abuse women is not ‘fear mongering,’ it’s just reality.

          • andeväsen

            “So those around you will distrust men or”

            Or. So that female doctors enter the specialty of O&G. So that medical ethicists examine the O&G consultation in a feminist context. So that this is included in primary medical school curricula. So that male and female O&Gs and male and female midwives take an active interest in listening to women.

            “so that you’ll go on doing what others want you to do”

            ?. What do others want me to do again?

          • Morag

            “But truly what is the reason for the constant fear mongering? So those around you will distrust men or so that you’ll go on doing what others want you to do.”

            And what, exactly, is this vague, diffuse and slightly ominous “go on doing what others want you to do,” Molly? Talk about fear-mongering.

            Sounds a lot like the old “radical feminists lie and distort to serve their agenda.” Meaning, you sound like an MRA troll in a shabby disguise. Especially when you put “the patriarchy” in scare quotes and then say, “I am rf and I’m not scared.” Funny. And, also, the imperative: “free your minds.” Ooh, how sexy … just let go of all those negative thoughts and feelings, ladies … loosen up and trust that the nice men mean you no harm. Good grief, what a faker you are.

          • Ellesar

            I didn’t mention fear, and that was not the position I was coming from, but thanks for putting words in my mouth!

            I have been examined once by a man, I was 17 and getting an abortion. I wanted to request a woman, but did not feel able to do so, needing to be compliant to get an abortion with no fuss.

            I was not examined by him, but I had a male doctor in the delivery room during the birth of my first child telling me how things were going to be if my baby was not out by 9pm. Choice was not an option apparently (my baby was not in danger).

            I just don’t want to be genitally examined by a man! I am not afraid, but I AM suspicious of professionalism, as there is no shortage of stories about gross unprofessionalism in this area.

            When I had breast cancer I had the same discomfort around male doctors, refused an examination by one oncologist who I found very creepy but the professor who did my mastectomy was one of the best… But now I have a female plastic surgeon and it makes me just a little bit more comfortable.

          • Ellesar

            I found this on the site Everydaysexism:
            anon 2015-05-16 17:55
            “A male gynecologist ended my appointment by slapping my butt cheek twice and saying, “We’re done, beautiful.” I now only go to female gynecologists.”

            Yes, this. Not ‘fear’, real life experiences of seixist unprofessionalism.

      • bfgs

        At my local teaching hospital, almost all of the senior physicians, who direct the curriculum, train future physicians and students, and effectively call the shots, are women in their 40s and 50s who grew up post-second wave feminism. Many of them also have experiences of pregnancy and childbirth (although I don’t think that’s at all necessary to be a competent O&G). I think 80-90% of new O&Gs are women. This demographic shift does have an effect on the field: I would say that it is becoming more woman-centric and woman-friendly over time. New male O&Gs are choosing to enter and are learning in an environment where women are in the positions of authority and where many patients prefer female O&Gs. (I was in a relatively liberal region, so this may not be true everywhere.)

        • andeväsen

          The head of the O&G at my local teaching hospital was also a woman, now retired. She was responsible for delivering med school and nursing training. She was an inspiration. The male juniors directly under this prof I remember were exceptionally respectful to their patients, more so than (in general) the male O&G juniors at another hospital a few miles away.

          More women are entering the field. But as with many other forms of work, changes need to be made to working patterns and to expectations that mothers do the lioness’s share of child rearing to enable women to contribute much more to their field.

  • Morag

    I’m only about half-way through the Salon article on Muslim Feminism, and I will finish reading the article when I feel like I can stomach it. But I have to take a break to register and express my outrage against the author, Nathan Lean.

    He is taking the harrowing narratives of women like Hirsi Ali, and comparing them to wild, fictional tales of the past which were written to stir up racial hatred against Muslim men. Except now, says he, it’s not white women who are spreading the false rape allegations, but Muslim women themselves, whose black and brown skin is being used to give these sad stories — of female genital mutilation, arranged marriages, and all-round violent oppression by males — credibility.

    Maybe I’ll have more to say later — and would love to hear from other feminists here on this article. For now, I am recalling Julie Burchill’s observation that liberal men are quite in love with, and protective of (ostensibly), Islam — but that the real deal is that they are cozy with misogyny, it all its cultural/religious/political varieties.

    • Rocio

      Interesting observations. I have actually noticed that White liberal men are some of the worst Islamophobes. (Aside from the Christian conservatives.)

      Hirsi Ali has actually admitted to lying on her asylum application. There’s questions as to how much she lied but she was living comfortably in Kenya for many years before she filed for asylum saying she was persecuted in Somalia.

      As an atheist who thinks anti-theists miss the opportunity to make allies with liberal religious folks and some moderates (real ones not fake moderate), I have so many thoughts. I was raised Catholic and know what that initial I was fed a bunch of BS lies rage feels like but I’ve found in my organizing it’s better to critique patriarchal practices and not identities or the whole umbrellas of 1 billion people at a time.

      Also I really get pretty pissed when people claim that Islam is uniquely patriarchal when Christianity’s historically had a record basically as bad. Heck a Feminist yet Christian theology professor of mine noted to us there’s a passage in the bible that says women should wear veils to church. And they did! Until the 20th century when most churches said “Oh well it was a demand of the times! No longer necessary.” Not to mention witch burnings and many other things.

      I’ll try to read that article later. Just my two cents is that the atheist evangelist mission sometimes conflicts with the win women to Feminism message when they’re not looking to change or quit religion.

      (So I know many socialists and anarchists and they’re mostly atheists but we rarely talk about our non belief bc we’re generally trying to win people on issues and unless they’re fundies, they’re usually amenable to talking about issues.)

      • Rocio

        By which I mean I think there’s a way to fight the institutions and their patriarchal teachings while trying to win over the rank and file at the same time. You’ll lose fundies but a lot of people are loosely those identities but looking for progressive change.

        I certainly don’t think Christianity, Islam, and also Orthodox Judaism are neutral (don’t know a ton about the more liberal parts of Judaism) but isolating the hardliners and uplifting the liberals in those religions seems easier than getting 2 billion people to just give them up. Best way to explain it is that the Catholic hierarchy and their patriarchal teaching suck (I was raised Catholic) and I fight them tooth and nail but there are many vaguely Catholic Feminists out there. Ideally you want to fight the church on the issue while increasing the Feminists in their ranks! Sorry for the long tangent.

      • andeväsen

        “I have actually noticed that White liberal men are some of the worst Islamophobes”

        The opposite is true for me. White liberal men are some of the worst cultural relativists when it comes to women’s human rights.

    • andeväsen

      I had a very similar response to yours, Morag – I had to take a break and will get back to the article at some point. I could not stomach another “alleged” and “supposed” as descriptors of the women’s pain. “Let’s not be Islamophobic because right-wingers are Islamophobic. Let’s be misogynist because everyone is misogynist” seems to be the thrust of the article.

      To me it is like pro-prostitution industry campaigners smearing exited prostituted women’s testimonies with the “right-winger” brush.

      • Morag

        ‘ “Let’s not be Islamophobic because right-wingers are Islamophobic. Let’s be misogynist because everyone is misogynist” seems to be the thrust of the article.’

        Yes! Brilliant. Thank you for boiling it down like that.

        ‘To me it is like pro-prostitution industry campaigners smearing exited prostituted women’s testimonies with the “right-winger” brush.’

        Yup. It’s the same same same. Casting doubt on, invalidating and condemning the women who tell their brutal stories instead of condemning those who have brutalized them. And, by increments, and under the guise of liberal idealism, they blur the line between the oppressors and the oppressed, with the intention to actually switch those positions around. It’s so sneaky, so insidious, that it’s no wonder we feel nauseous. We can hardly believe they’re doing it.

        • andeväsen

          The article’s tipping point for me was when the author described one of the women as having “played the gender card”. I had to take a break. Having the three asterixes there was a great editorial decision.

          And having read the rest of it, it continues in this vein.

          “The values they claim to champion — gender equality, nonviolence, rationality, and self-critique — are virtuous for sure, and ones that, in their view, any reasonable human being should welcome. The problem, though, is that they elevate themselves above the rest of the Muslim community and, looking down upon it from their throne of high morality, delineate the acceptable parameters of practicing religion”.

          So in other words: “sure, the women may have a point. The problem though is that they are uppity women.”

          A brave new variation on the MRA theme. Yes, Nathan Lean, you’ve played the gender card.

  • mauritia

    How the hell does a dude scholar, who by no indication whatsoever grew up Muslim, feel he has the right to tell women who did how they should feel about it?

    • He feels he can get away with it because the norm in universities nowadays is “cultural relativism”, which means blindly respecting people’s “cultures” and equating culture with race (thus equating opposition to cultural relativism with racism.)

      I think it is very important to acknowledge that being born with particular skin tone and having raised with a particular religion or culture does not mean you will necessarily be a blind adherent of that religion or culture. Some white people, including those raised Christian, end up rejecting Christianity (and other Western ideologies like individualism, neoliberalism and sex-positivity.) Many ethnic Jews do not believe in Judaism and many Arabs, including those raised Muslim, do not believe in Islam or endorse the version of Islam which they were indoctrinated into.

      I do not endorse religious persecution and I have no feelings of hatred towards people who adhere to religious beliefs or play a subordinate role within religious institutions. It is the ideologies and institutions themselves that I oppose. However, as in the case of the sex and beauty industries, all criticisms of ideologies, institutions and practices are interpreted as personal attacks against those harmed or subordinated by such things and those who are part of (or used to be part of) them, but are nonetheless critical of them are branded as traitors.

      Not everyone adheres to the culture/ideology they were raised in, just as not all women adhere to femininity. Assuming otherwise is somewhat racist in my view, since it is an attempt to force a role onto somebody based on how they were born or otherwise it is a denial of the real diversity that exists among non-white, non-Westerner people in terms of ideology and behaviour. It also ignores universal human characteristics, like empathy and the desire for liberty.

      Liberals makes the differences between ethnic groups seems largers than they actually, while making individual differences within groups seem smaller. This approach leads away from the creation of an integrated, egalitarian world (which I always thought was the purpose of anti-racist activism) and towards more more (unnecessary) conflict. I should clarify that I am not against the recognition that people who belong to non-white ethnic groups and are persecuted and/or subordinated. I am not advocating “colour-blindless”. We need to be very aware of how race influences the way people are treated, but we should not assume that it directly determines one’s personality, philosophical/political viewpoints or entertainment preferences.

      Culture is for the most part, something manufactured by ruling classes (all over the world, including in the West) and imposed onto ordinary people. To blindly endorse “culture”, is to blindly celebrate the most powerful and privileged among every ethnic group (who, to be fair, may not be as powerful and privileged as whites who are part of the ruling class). Radicals need to stand with the oppressed of every ethnic group (including poor whites) and celebrate cultural products (e.g. books, videos, posters, etc.) and movements which encourage them to rise up against oppression. Most ethnic groups have cultural products and/or movements of this nature, because whether liberal, cultural relativists like it or not, liberty and equality are human values, not “white, Western” values.

      • andeväsen

        “Liberals makes the differences between ethnic groups seems largers than they actually, while making individual differences within groups seem smaller.”

        Absolutely. They are happy to overlook, or even smear, women’s rights campaigners from within particular groups as “pandering to right-wingers” while simultaneously upholding the “right” of the group to continue anti-woman practices in the name of diversity.

  • Ellesar

    I am not smitten with Ruby Rose, so many around the internet and OITNB fans are. She is not above photoshopped images of the Kardashian variety (with her arse out) to promote herself – yes, she is out and proud lesbian, but that isn’t enough – she seems just like a shameless self promoter of the highest order.