http://www.villagevoice.com/2012-05-02/news/kate-bornstein-amazing-voyage-gender-scientology/2/Much of her memoir describes her changing ideas about her own body and the sexual politics she encountered as she transitioned. But this is not just another one of her books about gender.
The number-one reason she wrote the book (and she's clear about it in the book itself) was for her daughter and grandchildren. "I want them to see if they want to look. Writing the book has allowed me to let go of the need to reach out to them," she says.
Kate hasn't seen her daughter, Jessica, since 1980. She has never seen her two grandchildren. She's hoping that her book is popular enough that a copy will fall into their hands and provide them with a detailed explanation of how she got to be who she is today—a transsexual, Jewish, lesbian, bipolar, masochistic cutter.
I told her that it did seem like an odd strategy—that in order to reach out to a daughter who has shunned her for more than 30 years, she would do so with graphic descriptions not only of her gender transformation, but also of her s&m adventures.
She nodded, knowingly, and smiled. "It's not the transgender issue she would have a problem with—it's that I left Scientology."
IMHO, thetan do have gender -- you are whatever you decide you are."Thetans have no gender. Can you imagine a more appealing theology for someone like me?" Kate asks.
That cover seems to be totally insulting.
Hi Kate - I remember you and Molly from the Hotel Martinique days - your office I think was upstairs from the rest of the org. Looking at your pictures you look like you have lost some weight. You look good but I have a time making the pictures fit with my memories of you in a SO uniform. Ah well. I'd ask how Molly was doing but since you, like me, are no longer part of the Scientology world, I guess I'll let that slide. I know how the undeclared sort of slip away as life continues on without them. I must admit reading Tony's article was a bit of a shock as went from: Bornstein? I knew someone like that, to That Al! to Kate? But, you know, it's cool. I have come to realize that life is much like that old Sly Stone song -Everyday people. So good! I wonder where the people in my life went to, and it always a happy moment to find a lost thread of the fabric of my life.
An old man sat behind the huge desk. He rose creakily to his feet, his face broke into a wide smile, and he walked around his desk toward me with his hand extended as if in friendship. Swiss bankers never do that.
“Mr. L. Ron Hubbard,” the old guy said to me, “the bank so appreciates your business all these years, and it’s such a pleasure to finally meet you in person.”
Oops. No, this was much more than an oops — this was a genuine oh fuck! It must have been the work of some SP [Suppressive Person — Scientology’s term for a person who is completely and irredeemably evil. Like me today; I’m an SP.] Well, some SP inside the Swiss banking conspiracy had obviously broken into the files of the Religious Research Foundation and falsely linked them to the Old Man. Fuck, fuck, fuck! I took a deep breath and reminded myself that I was a far superior being to the old man — lying to him came easy.
“I’m so sorry,” I say. “But I am not this Mr. El? Hub Hubbard? of whom you speak.”
By then, we were both visibly pale. My mind was racing with worst-case scenarios — and the old guy realized that by naming me, he’d violated some strict law of Swiss banking privacy. We froze, our eyes locked in a long awkward silence. Then we each forced a laugh at the silly mistake, we said our goodbyes, and I strolled casually out of the bank.