Bash the Real Groomers

Photo of classroom with students.

Image by Museums Victoria.

As someone who proudly self-identifies as an aggressively open genderfuck anarchist, I get called a lot of ugly words, and I’ve made something of a tradition of owning most of them. In fact, coming from the Eazy-E school of pejorative reclamation, I take a great deal of joy in picking up the slurs that bigots hurl at me like stones and hocking them right back in their pig faces. Truth be told, I’d much rather be tarred and feathered as a carpet munching tranny faggot any day of the week than to pass for another normie vanilla breeder. I work hard to stir up the status quo like a cocktail and I welcome their hatred with arms wide open and a kiss on each cheek.

But suppose there is just one word that I cannot fucking stand for even one withering second. In that case, it is the toxic title of “groomer” and this is the new pejorative of choice for those pious cunts in the so-called Christian Right as well as their limp dick Zionist flunkies in the GOP who they ride like a bumper car. According to current popular Republican lore, fierce queens like me are little more than mincing sexual predators, targeting their children so we can indoctrinate them into becoming unwitting participants in our perverted lifestyle. It’s an insane and downright evil conspiracy theory that triggers the high holy hell out of me like a shotgun because it couldn’t be farther from reality if were scribed by Roald Dahl.

I spent over a decade of my childhood being groomed and violated by legitimate sexual predators in a tiny country Catholic school in more ways than I can count, and I was targeted specifically because of my disharmony with the gender identity written on my birth certificate. I have jagged fractured memories of faceless adults putting their hands on my naked body in anger and being too terrified to say ‘no’ because I honestly believed that they wouldn’t let me go home if I did. I was four years old, and these traumatic flashbacks are the only memories I have from my childhood in which it was painfully clear that I was a little girl that just happened to have a penis and they hurt. Those papist cunts got exactly what they wanted. I spent the rest of my childhood numb from the neck down and when puberty finally awakened a storm of rage in my soul, I got called a monster, and I believed them, because I was groomed to believe them.

I wish I could say that I was alone. This is the one time when I honestly do. And I wish that I could say that it’s just the Catholic schools too, but it’s not. Queer kids are groomed daily by an overwhelmingly cis-hetero adult establishment to believe that they are weird and broken and abnormal and have no say whatsoever on how their bodies are defined or who gets to define them. But this is even bigger than Queer kids too. Our entire compulsory school system is a device designed with the intent to groom all wild children into domesticated citizens.

The American compulsory school system was an invention of the Protestant Reformation of the mid-19th century. Using the Prussian model of martial schooling, a bunch of racist bible thumpers built our supposedly liberal public-school apparatus to force-feed immigrants and Indians the King James Bible until they choked. The classroom was modeled after a church with desks lined up like pews and a pompous instructor standing above them and lecturing fire and brimstone like a preacher. Over the years this system dropped God from the act and turned its attention to preparing children for the assembly line with bells triggered on the hour like a factory but the product being manufactured remained unchanged and America’s schools, both public and private, continue to churn out that product to this day.

The product I’m talking about is obedient subservient children who are socialized to believe that they have no rights, only privileges granted to them by benevolent adult authority figures in exchange for staying in line and following the rules. There is a word for this, another terrible slur, and it’s called ‘victim.’ Children in this country and in most other modern nation states around the world aren’t easy marks for abuse because they’re stupid or innocent. They are fodder for pedophiles because petty authoritarians have coached them into believing that their own bodies don’t even belong to them, and the sickest thing is that they’re right.

In modern western society, children have all the rights and dignity of farm animals. They can’t vote. They can’t work. They can’t leave the house unattended. They can’t even empty their bladder without a stamped document from an adult and these Jesus creeps have the nerve to bitch about “parent’s rights?” In a country bereft of youth rights, parent’s rights amount to little more than property rights and I’m sick of tiptoeing around the subject matter of abolition just because I’m a faggot. I’m an abolitionist because I’m a fucking faggot and the only thing that I’m grooming your kids to do is fight back.

The statistics have shown us repeatedly that Queer children are far more likely to be targeted for abuse than their straight counterparts. These same statistics have also shown us that their victimizers are overwhelmingly heterosexual men. That’s because child sexual abuse has very little to do with sexual orientation and everything to do with power. This is precisely why I was targeted, because the fear and shame that I experienced in relation to my own body made me an easy mark. I already blamed myself before anyone even laid a finger on me. I can’t take this back. I mourn the loss of that little girl that those creeps broke into jagged little pieces every fucking day, but I can’t put her back together. However, I will be goddamned if I let the pious adults who make all the rules in this country get away with breaking another generation against their wheel just because they can.

This next sentence will probably put me at the top of every parental rights group’s hit list but fuck them, somebody needs to say it. According to the bullshit order that American puritanism has established, all kids are Queer because all kids are questioning. None of them have figured out who or what they are yet and the last thing that they need is for some role crazy adult to tell them who or what they should be. Queer people need to re-dedicate themselves completely to the fight for youth rights, but we also need to abandon the public school system as a tool for doing this. The only thing the parental rights Nazis get right is that the state shouldn’t be parenting their kids. Their community should. But that can’t happen until children have been restored as equal participants in their own communities.

The compulsory school system was designed for the opposite purpose. It was designed to segregate children from their communities until they could be properly groomed into abandoning them in favor of the cold bureaucracy of wage slavery. This system must be destroyed. Queer people and our allies need to dismantle the entire adult managerial state as defined by the incestuous marriage of big religion, big business and big government and we must replace it with something that empowers young people to define themselves however they damn well please.

We can do this with completely voluntary free schools held in public spaces with no predetermined syllabus and no prescriptive curriculum. We can do this by embracing children as equal participants in their communities with the right to work and the right to quit. We can do this by telling them our stories even when the words burn in on our lips. But we can only do this when we stop preaching and start teaching and the first thing that we must teach them is that they always have the right to say ‘no,’ to their parents, to their teachers, to their priests and to their government. Their bodies are their property and the only thing that anyone who puts their hands on them has a right to is a face load of buckshot.

You fucking groomers can call me whatever the fuck you want but I will die fighting for the right for your offspring to be counted as individuals with value. If you want to groom these kids, then you’re going to have to get through this genderfuck tranny faggot to do it and I’m not afraid to bite anymore. You really should have killed that little girl. Instead, you just pissed her off.

Nicky Reid is an agoraphobic anarcho-genderqueer gonzo blogger from Central Pennsylvania and assistant editor for Attack the System. You can find her online at Exile in Happy Valley.