Notes on the Journey

Posts tagged ‘Gender Recognition Act’

Transgender Assault on Maria MacLachlan

 

Assault on Maria MacLachlan at Speakers’ Corner and how trans activists responded

PEAK TRANS

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Some personal information that some readers might think matters:

I am Maria MacLachlan. I live in England. I’m a baby-boomer of mixed European parentage. I’m married to a man. I have borne and raised a son and a daughter.

My other websites include Skepticat_UK and Think Humanism.

My real-world experience of trans people doesn’t amount to much beyond getting robbed and assaulted by a few of them at Speakers’ Corner in September 2017, though I’ve made a few real-life trans friends as a result of that experience and a few more online. On this page I recount how my thinking about transition has changed over the years.

A word about pronouns: As this is the story of my personal journey to where I’m at now, I have decided that my use of pronouns should reflect my feelings at the time that the events I describe occurred.  I use pronouns that reflect biological sex prior to transitioning and that reflect gender identity after transitioning, which is what I did until very recently.

Where it began

The first trans person I knew of was April Ashley. That was in 1970. I now know that she attracted media attention at that particular time because of the legal precedent on the status of transsexuals being set by her divorce case – Corbett vs Corbett – but my recollection is only of learning from the TV news that she’d been a man who had somehow turned into a woman.

She posed for the TV cameras looking ultra feminine in heavy make-up and sniffing a flower and I recall that, as a sporty and streetwise pubescent girl who was mortified by my developing body and somewhat disdainful of all things girly, I found the sight of April irritating and disturbing. I wasn’t, however, so contemptuous as to refer to her as “it”, as did others at my (co-ed) school the next day. That seemed a step too cruel to me.

I was still in my early teens when I read The Female Eunuch, from which I learned the meaning of the word ‘stereotype’. Germaine Greer’s words about April Ashley, resonated strongly.

As long as the feminine stereotype remains the definition of the female sex, April Ashley is a woman…She is as much a casualty of the polarity of the sexes as we all are.

It was this book that confirmed my visceral, unarticulated feminism and inspired me to become active in the Women’s Movement and well-read in feminist writings of the 1970s, now referred to as ‘second wave’ feminism.

In 1979, a multi-part documentary called, A Change of Sex aired on BBC2. It allowed viewers to follow the journey undertaken by George Roberts as he transitioned into his new identity, ‘Julia Grant’. My memory of that programme was that there was nothing remotely feminine about George either before or after transition. But because John Randall, the psychiatrist at the Charing X clinic was so vile (even though what he was saying made sense to me), I was firmly on George’s side and happy for him when he was finally allowed to go ahead with treatment. I felt no empathy with George/Julia as a woman for the same reason I felt no empathy with April Ashley as a woman. I was irritated by the importance placed on clothes and make-up which, to my mind, served to confirm that women were to be seen as frivolous and inferior to men, thus reinforcing the message I’d been bombarded with all my life, which was that the most important role of young women was to be a decorative plaything.

That said, I felt empathy for George as a human being. Here was someone so deeply unhappy with what he was that he was prepared to take massive risks in order to change himself and he was being horribly patronised by the odious Dr Randall. He “lived as a woman” – meaning he went round dressed in women’s clothes while looking very much a blokey sort of bloke. He took hormones, he had surgery. If doctors or other professionals couldn’t change the way he thought and the way he felt about himself, perhaps a “sex change”, as it was then called, was the only thing that could help him find happiness.

See a clip from A Change of Sex to get a taste of how unpleasant Randall was.

And an interesting interview with Julia from 2014, in which she talks about her extraordinary early life can be viewed here.

Personal impressions

I was a volunteer with the Samaritans for several years. Calls from men who said they felt they’d been born in the wrong body — or words to that effect — were quite common.  I now understand that some of these men were what psychologist Ray Blanchard calls ‘autogynephiliacs’. I know it is hotly disputed that there is any such thing as autogynephilia. On the basis of my experience of listening to these callers, I know it exists and I see that at least some trans folk admit to it. See, for example, Rya Jones’ video entitled, I am an autogynephile.

Of those who weren’t sex callers, those who wanted to, or were in the process of, or had completed transition, I never once felt I was listening to someone who was really a woman. As far as I was concerned, these were deeply unhappy, often very lonely and, in some cases probably mentally ill men. Of course those trans folk who weren’t unhappy and lonely wouldn’t be calling the Samaritans.

Around the turn of the century, I did a stint teaching young adults at a private language school in London. When I first started, I was confused by the look of one of the receptionists, whose light moustache and masculine clothes gave the appearance of a 15-year-old boy. I eventually got to know this individual and was shocked to hear from her that she had started transitioning because she “didn’t want to be a lesbian” and then changed her mind and stopped the hormone therapy. I can’t remember which country she said she’d been in when she started to transition but it seemed a vastly different experience to that of Julia Grant. A transgender identity casually adopted and abandoned, her story did nothing to make me feel more sympathetic to trans people but nor did I have strong feelings against. I just couldn’t understand it.

The news that a transsexual was in the Big Brother house in the UK version of the reality show aroused my curiosity enough to tune in and I was soon hooked watching the fabulous Nadia Almada. I rooted for her for the duration and voted for her to win the cash prize. I really wanted her to win and I don’t how much this was to do with wanting her to feel accepted and loved and how much it was to do with her being a great and entertaining character throughout. Nadia is one of the few male-born trans people I’ve found it difficult to think of as anything other than a woman, bless her.

Becoming more sympathetic

A major change in my feelings, as far as I had any at all, came early in 2009 when I attended an event in London and heard the personal stories of two trans people, Stephen Whittle and Rikki Arundel. My comment on it, posted in a thread on Think Humanism, survives.

I attended an event at the Wellcome Trust in January to hear Stephen Whittle (a transman) and Rikki Arundel (a transwoman). It was probably one of the most interesting and informative meetings I’ve ever attended. I recommend this brief video of Stephen Whittle but it doesn’t say much about Stephen’s childhood. IIRC, he had decided to commit suicide if he couldn’t become a transman. He now lives a happy life as a husband, a father and Professor of Equalities Law at Manchester Metropolitan University.

I was amazed by Stephen Whittle, whom I found it impossible to imagine as ever having been a woman. Rikki Arundel, on the other hand, who had transitioned late in life, having been in a straight marriage and fathered children, was easily perceived as trans. But Rikki said something that made a lasting impression on me, which was that having lived a man’s life thus far, he didn’t feel he could call himself a woman. He could only ever be a transwoman. If only all male-born trans people would say the same, I might never have reached peak trans.

Late in 2011, I watched the TV documentary, My Transsexual Summer, which led to a further strengthening of my sympathies. I ended up making a contribution to the funding of Lewis Hancox double mastectomy. I’m not saying I regret doing this ­– Lewis was going to get the surgery with or without my help – but I won’t be donating to anybody else’s top surgery. By the way, at this time I was still under the mistaken impression that “transitioning” meant surgery, including genital surgery, as well as taking hormones. I thought that every male or female in the process of transitioning wanted to have genital surgery and that those who considered their transition complete, had already had it. I now know this is not the case. I don’t know what percentage of male-born transitioners have had any kind of genital surgery ­– “bottom surgery”, as it’s called ­– but I understand that it’s a minority.

In January 2013, when Suzanne Moore was criticised for making some unfortunate throwaway remark about the body-shape of Brazilian transsexuals, which she later apologised for, I felt sorry for her for making a mistake but, after her critics pointed out the unhappy lot of Brazilian transsexuals, my sympathies were more with them.

Edited to add: Five years later, Julie Burchill remembers the whole debacle here.

The tide begins to turn again

In September 2013 I attended a meeting at Soho Skeptics entitled Battle Over Gender, involving a discussion between a panel of four: Gia Milinovich, Julie Bindel, male-born Bethany Black – who presented as a butch lesbian – and female-born Adrian Dalton, who presented as a drag queen. I understood that Julie Bindel was considered to be a controversial guest and that she might provoke hostility from trans people in the audience. I was aware of her but hadn’t read much of her work at that time. But I was greatly impressed by her contribution, whereas the two trans people just confused me. On the whole, I was rather bored and left before the Q&A.

Some months after that meeting I saw Gia Milinovich getting some hate from trans people on twitter after she’d tweeted using a hashtag saying ‘no unexpected penises’ referring, so far as I recall, to wanting to enjoy a night out with women friends without fear of any of their male partners tagging along. I thought the criticisms were a ridiculous overreaction and I remember resolving to be extra careful not to say anything that would make me a target of the trans lobby, who came across as irredeemably nasty. I was getting enough crap from the various quacks I was involved in campaigning against at the time.

So I didn’t pay very much attention to the fuss about Germaine Greer in the autumn of 2015. I privately thought the proposal to no-platform her was disgusting but didn’t publicly express an opinion on it. What was the point when other people were doing so quite eloquently? Richard Dawkins is not someone I have too much time for these days (unless he’s writing about zoology and evolution, in which case I highly recommend him) but I thought the comment he expressed on twitter was spot on.

Students who suppress a distinguished scholar’s lecture because they disagree with her have no place in a university. Those who think it’s nonsense are entitled to stay away. Or come and argue. They should not censor views they think are nonsense. A university is not a ‘safe space’. If you need a safe space, leave, go home, hug your teddy & suck your thumb until ready for university.

In January 2016 I commented beneath an article on Pink News, which reported some unpleasant comments about trans people made by Jeremy Clarkson and a response to someone who was complaining that Clarkson was being called a bigot “just for disagreeing.” It was the first of several comments I have made on Pink News ­­­– or ‘Prick News’ as it is commonly referred to in feminist circles – but it is the only comment I have made there on the side of trans people. I still stand by what I said in the comment but I doubt I would bother to make a similar comment there or anywhere else ever again.

Peak Trans

A year later, in January 2017, I was astonished and thought it absolutely pathetic that there were objections by some trans folk to the pink pussy hats worn on the US Women’s March against Trump. Over the next few weeks, several things happened close together that finally ignited me.

The first was reading a report tweeted by Meghan Murphy – Vancouver Women’s Library opens amid anti-feminist backlash – and seeing the video recording of thuggish men and their handmaidens bullying feminist volunteers.

Then there was the unbelievable reaction to Jenni Murray’s article in the Sunday Times, an article I very much agreed with. As I was busy tweeting #IstandwithJenni, I became aware of a story in a local paper about a convicted rapist in which HE is referred to as SHE throughout. And, finally, the story of how a male weightlifter in New Zealand took a title and ranking away from one woman and ousted another from her place in the women’s national team. These were what sent me looking for more incidences of what I saw as insanity that was hurting women and girls, by which I mean female-born persons, as well as seeking out articles by gender critical feminists and our allies. Coming across the terf is a slur website, which contains screenshots of abuse directed at women by trans activists and allies, I was shocked, sickened and my anger was – and still is – strong enough to lift a 20-ton truck.

Unlike these men, however, I never felt remotely inclined to physically harm, kill or sexually abuse people promoting trans ideology, even though I now see them as the enemy of women. This may be something to do with the fact that, unlike them, I was socialised as a woman, whereas these hateful misogynists are not and never will be women.

A few weeks later I found myself in the somewhat surreal position of supporting gender-critical comments on twitter while challenging the transphobic sentiments being expressed elsewhere online after Zeke Smith, a participant on the American reality TV show, Survivor, was cruelly outed as transgender by someone who should have known better. The revelation came as a big surprise to other participants on the show and, it seems, most of the viewers, including me. But I was more shocked at the nasty intolerant comments about Zeke I saw on public forums and youtube in particular and I argued with them and defended Zeke whenever I saw them.

At this time I joined a number of radical feminist facebook groups which, one by one, have been forced to change their status from closed to secret, apparently after complaints by trans activist bullies. I’ve no intention of disclosing the contents of any of these groups beyond saying that although women express anger at some of the things trans activists say and do that are perceived – correctly, in my opinion – to hurt or be potentially harmful to women, I’ve never once seen the kind of violent hatred I see daily directed at gender critical women all over social media by trans people and their allies, whom I have come to think of as ‘the trans cult’. Thankfully, I have come across some cool trans people online who have helped me keep things in perspective. I can still count the number of them on two hands and I see they get a lot of hate too. They even get called ‘TERFs‘ which is, frankly, ridiculous.

Yet, although I’ve looked, I don’t see any such sustained attack on their real enemy – the right-wing and predominantly male bigots who would mock and abuse and physically assault them in the ways the trans cult say they’d like to do to us.

Speakers Corner

Finally, there was the attack on me at Speakers Corner and the reaction to it, which I blogged about here.

More than three months after the assault, it is still on my mind almost every waking minute. I have not been able to sleep unaided or take much work on because the incident has affected my concentration so badly. I am prone to anxiety attacks especially around young adults. I have children who are young adults. These are the kind of people whose company I used to enjoy. Now I avoid them.

I am still every bit as angry as I was when those people attacked me. I still don’t know why they did it, why they are so full of hate for someone they knew nothing about except that I wanted to go to a meeting to hear about some proposed legislation.

The effect of this attack on me has been compounded by the fact that it has been applauded and celebrated by hundreds of people on social media who think I deserved the attack. There are many fabricated versions of events being circulated together with video footage edited to give the impression that I provoked the attack. Some – including, purportedly, one of my assailants – have blatantly lied that I started the attack and this has given rise to a further falsehood that the police were not interested in investigating the incident. In fact, the police have always taken the incident seriously. People purporting to be feminists have been shielding the assailants and have been smearing my character. At the time of writing, only one of the three assailants has been arrested and will be charged. The other two are still to be found.

Because I was chosen pretty much at random to be the target of this assault by someone determined to “fuck some terfs up”, thousands of people who don’t know me are attributing to me views and opinions I simply don’t have. At the moment I feel I’m going to be walking round in a perpetual rage for the rest of my life. I’m a life-long humanist who once had quite a bit of faith in people’s fundamental decency. I no longer have that faith – it has been stolen from me and in that sense this has been a life-shattering event.

And that’s why I expect peak trans is where I’ll stay for the foreseeable future.

December 2017

 

Updated 14.07.18

“Evil Womxn”: The Silencing Of Biological Reality And The Technology Of Obfuscation

From Forbes:

“Evil Womxn”: The Silencing Of Biological Reality And The Technology Of Obfuscation

Julian Vigo

Social Media 

I cover the anthropological intersections of tech, politics & culture.

Dedicated to Electric Light Orchestra

In the UK, the recent Reform of the Gender Recognition Act consultation ended on Monday which temporarily marked a pause to one of the most heated issues in the country. For the past five years, I have been actively researching and writing about what is at the heart of these “gender wars” where one side of this debate has persistently attempted to interchange biology with socialization while shutting down any debate on this subject. Briefly, the pro-gender side of this discussion has argued that gender (masculine/feminine) is innate or biological, while contending that sex (male/female) is a social construction. This thesis is not only completely false and scientifically unsound, but it is a direct reversal of what we do know: sex is biological and gender is socially constructed. Women are not menstruating because they wear pink, they menstruate because of the sex of their body. Inversely, men do not earn more money than women on average today because currency has an “invisible magnet” to the human penis, but it is because how socialization has historically had men in the seat of economic power, a fact which is slowly leveling off over time and with legislation.

Children born with a penis or a vagina are somatically sexed by the physical fact of their primary sex characteristics, namely: genitalia, gonads, and sex chromosomes. Secondary sex characteristics are what develop later in puberty: the enlargement of breasts for females, the physical contouring of the body, the elongation of the body for males, the storage of more body fat for females, body hair, the shape of the face in both sexes, the structure of the pelvis and other bones, increased muscle mass for males, and so forth. These are somatic markings of the body which can vary, but as a rule females and males are entirely distinct sexually because of these characteristics in addition to the basic fact that females are the only sex which can get pregnant. The transgender narrative insists that children are “assigned a gender at birth” which is in fact incorrect. Children’s external genitalia are observed and from this a sex is recorded. Nothing more. Gender is what pushes the sexed body into a social box because “boys should do this” and “girls that.”

Hold on there—wait, wait!! I know, you are going to say, “But what about intersex?” I’m coming to that now. Intersex does not interrupt the fact of sexual dimorphism which is defined as “the differences in appearance between males and females of the same species, such as in color, shape, size, and structure, that are caused by the inheritance of one or the other sexual pattern in the genetic material.” That there are various intersex conditions no more changes the scientific fact that humans are sexually dimorphic any more than a person born with one leg does not change the fact that humans are bipedal, or that another person born with one eye makes us copepods (one-eyed crustacean species). In fact, many intersex organizations and spokespersons have repeatedly asked to stop having their condition politicized and used to further the transgender political ideology.

Still, the reversal of these terms “sex” and “gender” is not a coincidence—it is the result of a conscious conflation of these terms for the past decade where transgender activists have been using these terms interchangeably. And the effect of this is that now, nobody knows what the other means. Take for instance The New York Times article from Monday states that the Trump administration is planning to “define gender goes beyond the limits of scientific knowledge.” The fallacy of this statement I will address in a moment. For now, let’s note how the Times uses “gender” here while going on to quote Dr. Joshua D. Safer, an endocrinologist at Mount Sinai who discusses sex and gender interchangeably. While these two terms are not at all the same, an endocrinologist and president of the Professional Association of Transgender Health is clearly conflating them, and it would seem purposefully so: “As far as we…understand it in 2018, [gender identity] is hard-wired, it is biological, it is not entirely hormonal.” Indeed, it is easy to use gender and sex interchangeably while offering no proof of any hard wiring whatsoever while also reverting to vague clichés that have no scientific basis. Gender does not “originate between yours ears.”

Like The New York Times piece, there are several articles which have been making the rounds on social media this week which also falsely posit that sex is a spectrum: this one in Nature, a blog post about this first piece from Stanford University, and this piece in Wired. In effect, the Nature piece is not a piece of scientific research and is an op-ed on Disorders of Sexual Determination (DSD) which relies on the anomaly to posit that human sex is not dimorphic even though like my above examples, human sexual dimorphism is not changed by anomalies or disorders. (Here is a great breakdown of the Nature article.) The Wired article jumps the shark by contending that because people have virtual identities online that it is somehow “old school” all the while claiming that gender is scientific because these writers as well demonstrate not knowing the difference between gender and sex. And this op-ed by Anne Fausto-Sterling is a rinse and repeat of the same analysis of the anomalies of sex and positing them as the norm. A parallel to this type of logical fallacy in political economy would be to analyze the wealth of the 1% and declare that poverty is over concluding that this means that everyone is opulently wealthy.

But here is where things get interesting. The New York Times article, from which all these other pieces are spun, mis-interprets the Trump administration memo as the word “gender” when in reality it is “sex.”

The term, gender, has been weaponized to such a degree that most people don’t understand the distinction between the two. Michael McConkey situates the current obfuscation of gender and sex where the “social constructionist agenda is premised on exploiting the broader public’s confusion about the meaning of the word “gender’.” While CNN got the story down correctly and referred to the memo’s wording of “sex,” it completely misunderstood what is at stake with the legal definition of sex being proposed, writing, “The argument goes that to deny someone a job because they’re not masculine or feminine enough constitutes sex-based discrimination.” Someone’s being “too” or “not enough” masculine or feminine is entirely related to gender, not sex.

Yet, women being denied employment because their possible employer deems them to be a child-bearing “risk” is an example of how sex, not gender, is used to oppress a class of humans. And these distinctions are not minor, they are the very basis upon which women—from butch lesbians to effeminate women—around the planet are raped and forcibly impregnated today. Boko Haram didn’t ask how its hundreds of rape victims identified. Yet, transgender ideology labels this inherent biological vulnerability in females, as “cis privilege.”

Still, we do know that identity is psychological and not somatic. To date there is no proof that gender identity for some is anything more than a manifestation of “gender dysphoria, a condition classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM–5). While for many others, given the recent evidence of ROGD (rapid-onset gender dysphoria) amongst adolescents in recent years, it is widely believed that we are facing a wave of social transitioners who are self-identifying as transgender because of a social contagion. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the UK where the onslaught of pro-trans lobby groups have infiltrated the education system—even advising the NHS despite these groups not being professionally qualified in this field—such that there has been a 4000% increase over the past decade in girls presenting to the country’s only gender clinic for children, the Tavistock in London, self-identifying as transgender. If anything speaks to the fact that gender is social and sex somatic, it is this rising numbers of girls being sterilized by puberty blockers. To clarify—that’s their sex, not gender, being permanently shutdown for any possible reproduction, in addition to the skyrocketing increase of voluntary mastectomies of these girls as young as 13.

So what is the fallout from this attempt to conflate sex with gender? First, you have the recent phenomenon of males wanting to be housed in female prisons, such as the recent case of Karen White, a rapist sentenced to prison yet treated as a woman by the prison service. Aside from the tragedy of the women he sexually assaulted behind bars, the fact that now crime statistics falsely reporting “women as rapists” will sky rocket over time giving inaccurate census information and misdirecting much needed services for women (eg. women are the overwhelming victims of male violence, not the perpetrators thereof).

Relatedly, in areas where there is a recognition of women in certain fields, you now have males who are entering into this framework taking accolades and other forms of recognition from women, such as Pippa/Philip Bunce who received the Financial Times Top 50 Female champions of Women in Business. Bruce is a transvestite who comes to work in a suit or dress depending on his mood. And the recent removal of the word woman from a major Pap smear campaign by Cancer Research UK this past summer, angered women across the UK, replacing “woman” with “anyone with a cervix” as has Planned Parenthood’s removal of “pregnant woman”, now replacing this with “pregnant person” in tandem with media that is capitulating unquestioningly ideology. And this week The Guardian ran a fake news piece saying that “YouGov asked 538 menstruators about their experiences of period pain in the workplace.” Yet when you go to the YouGov website to see this poll, nowhere does the abject word “menstruator” appear. This was the fabulation of Guardian writer Poppy Noor scoring some “woke points.”

Are feminists being alarmist to think that the category of women is not only under erasure but that there is a conscious political ploy to render biological females invisible? Well, when  Brendan O’Neill who is usually quite critical of feminists, come to call out this very erasure of women in the public sphere, we must realize that this is a massive problem and a serious threat to the rights of women. It is time for everyone to pay close attention to what is actually going on.

Proof in point, writer and feminist, Julie Bindel, was invited to speak later this month at “Truth to Power Café” in London’s Roundhouse, an event specifically celebrating free speech. Then earlier this week, Bindel was no-platformed from this event by the event organizer, Jeremy Goldstein, under pressure by two other participants. Bindel is a well-known British feminist and activist who has worked on issues central to the rights of women who has unfairly been branded as “transphobic” since an article she wrote in 2004. After it was made known that Bindel was no-platformed, Index on Censorship pulled out of the event and finally the Roundhouse cancelled the “Truth To Power Café” event issuing a statement about the “safety of [their] young people, audiences, staff and volunteers” and that they feel that they “can no longer guarantee it is a safe space, particularly for our young artists.” One would have thought Isis had been invited to this event and not a human rights campaigner.

Similarly, feminist campaigner, Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull of Standing for Women in the UK has produced billboards around the country, only to see most of them taken down after various media companies were lobbied by trans campaigners. What did her billboards contain? The dictionary definition of the word “woman”: adult human female. Keen-Minshull’s first billboard in Liverpool last month was was removed after the media owner, Primesight, apologized saying that they were “misled by the campaign’s message.” (Yeah, because the definition of woman is so cryptic that Tom Hanks will be soon starring in a forthcoming Da Vinci Code sequel on the cryptic meaning of “woman.”) Keen-Minshull then went on to post more billboards—one in Leeds which was up for a day and a half and another in London which survived a couple of hours before both were removed. Also, ten buses which were supposed to carry this definition on a side were also declined on the basis that it would be “likely to offend the general travelling public.” As Keen-Minshull related these events to me, she paused, stating, “How can we be talking about the dictionary definition of woman as controversial?”

We are at an impasse where the elliptical and conscious misrepresentations of sex are being used to shut up women in Canada, the US, the UK and beyond from live talks which are de-platformed, to social media accounts which are shut down, to billboards being removed, and the very linguistic basis for discussing sexual difference being erased. More bizarrely private and public institutions are coming on board thoughtlessly parroting an ideology they have no comprehension of such as the Wellcome Collection in London which two weeks ago was excoriated for using the term “womxn” because they felt it was “important to create a space/venue that includes diverse perspectives.”  But how can spelling the word for adult human female with an be anything but exclusive of, er, women? Just like the revamping of  women’s toilet’s into gender neutral toilets today, it is no coincidence that it is not men’s toilets which are rendered gender neutral, but women’s. Similarly, those making demands that women “include men” in feminism will then shift to their next demand that women “include” men as women. As absurd as it is to fathom that my writing six zeros after my bank account balance will make me a millionaire, somehow large tranches of society have been duped into believing that words cast a magic spell upon reality.  What is crystal clear here is that being “gender neutral” and “inclusive” has become a political mandate shoved at women as if they are supposed to fix the problems of why the default to an effeminate male is a female. Other questions abound:  why should these gender non-conforming males, because of their non-conformity, be sanctioned to the women’s toilets? Why should gender neutrality in any way implicate women as arbiters between men when it is men who need to sit down and discuss amongst themselves why some of them are intolerant of non-masculine males in their toilettes, showers, and other intimate spaces? Because of the unspoken and underlying presumption that women are easier to bully and manipulate, women have been saddled with sorting out men’s “sock drawer.”

Women the world over reject the social status attached to having a female body given that the benefits are highly outweighed by its deficits. Yet, as a class of people who are politically and economically disenfranchised still in 2018, we are facing the evisceration of the only power we have to name our reality and speak out against what is an appalling Orwellian stage in our human history: language. We need to understand that the cure to the weight that gender imposes upon all of us—especially upon females— is not to shantay and sashay our way into fabulousness or to rebrand ourselves as a new word as if words function like three clicks of Dorothy’s ruby slippers. Our task as humans is to to expand upon the experiences we live and to state in clear and loud tones that there is no “wrong body,” just very regressive politics in relation to material reality.

Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn. Check out my website or some of my other work here.

I am an independent scholar and filmmaker who specializes in anthropology, technology, and political philosophy. My latest book is “Earthquake in Haiti: The Pornography

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