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A Queer and Pleasant Danger

by Kitty Drexel
EDGE Media Network Contributor
Thursday May 17, 2012
A Queer and Pleasant Danger

Kate Bornstein is brave. She is very, very brave. Her memoir, "A Queer and Pleasant Danger," should be located in all three of the LGBT, self-help and biography sections of your local library and bookstores. She begins and ends her memoir with gentle pathos; she's a creature of self-discovery and she attempted to find herself almost everywhere.

Ms. Bornstein was born Albert Bornstein, a nice Jewish boy from the Jersey Shore. Her memoir details her transition into Scientology, out of Scientology at the mercy of the now defunct Financial Police, into transgendered womanhood, and then directly into the loving chaos of the San Francisco S&M underbelly. Ms. Bornstein is frank in her storytelling (at one point including a warning that graphic S&M portrayal is coming up with a kind note as to which page one should skip to should one be squeamish) but kind to her audience. Her intent is not to teach or extract positive judgment, but to weave an epic story.

Her mission is to tell the truth. She repeats, "I must not tell lies." Scientology has branded her a Supressive Person (dirty liars, all) but Kate has promised her audience that she will be truthful. She was born a woman who looked like a man, fought this truth her entire adult life and only came to accept it when she was ejected from the religion she thought had "saved" her. Rather than rage against this controversial religion, she accepts that it wasn't Scientology she should blame but herself. One woman can't change Scientology but she can change herself. So Kate did and her years of work as an artist and this lovely memoir are the result.

"I must not tell lies."

Kate apologizes only once: for asking her readership to contact her daughter, Jessica, and her two grandchildren. This book is a full-disclosure letter to them - written in the hopes that some one will hand this book to Jessica and she can learn of Kate's cancer before it's too late. If you know a Scientologist, Jessica Borstein, this book is for her.

Please read and pass it forward.

"A Queer and Pleasant Danger"
Kate Bornstein
Beacon Press


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