Brilliant talk by Anna McCormack.
The mindless mantra “transwomen are women” encapsulates both the ideology and attitudes of transgenderism, and the neoliberal zeitgeist, in three words. It implies the destruction of nature, of biology, of our own bodies – including through the radical mastectomies increasingly conducted on adolescent girls, mainly lesbians. It is based on the commodification of women, and it leads to the removal of legal protections and social supports designated for women and based on sex, and using this mantra like a threat – because if you don’t accept it, you are a bigot – men are colonising women’s hard-won spaces, organisations, movements and safehouses as well as lesbian culture.
This mantra is also having the effect of consolidating the domestication of the whole political left – peace groups, unions, socialist organisations –and assimilating them with the establishment as they commit to and prioritise transgender mythology, purge feminists and independent, critical thinkers from their ranks, and build stronger ties to the liberal political parties and big money also promoting gender identity and funding the Pride Parades.
In this way, the lie that “transwomen are women” is the neoliberal answer to the myth of the resurrection within the Catholic church. It is the one crazy thing you need to accept, these days, to demonstrate that despite whatever else you believe in or work toward, you are ultimately willing to surrender your critical faculties and submit to power and groupthink.
Voltaire’s famous warning that “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities” is also pertinent.
[A]s Audre Lorde famously said, “your silence will not protect you.” So to women out there holding their tongues to stay safe, I say, we are living in an era of rising authoritarianism, and this ideology is one vehicle for it. You need to find your sisters. Now is the time to speak the truth where you can, in spite of those who will turn on you or who refuse to offer you solidarity – and find your sisters. We are here, we are healing and finding our voices together, and we want you among us.
The makers of Flora face a furious backlash after the company stopped advertising on Mumsnet because campaigners claimed the parenting website was transphobic.
Mothers across Britain are now boycotting the firm that owns the margarine brand, which had responded to complaints by a ‘handful’ of transgender activists.
The current tangled knot surrounding sex and gender is one of patriarchal reversal and a smug ‘gotcha’ by men and anti-feminist women built on feminist works ‘pre’ and post gender’s entry as a term into feminist theory.
Postmodernism provides the philosophical underpinnings for the post truth-era.
However, the current state of affairs, particularly with regards to feminism, is not the fault of postmodernism alone. Judith Butler coupled postmodernism with queer theory in her impenetrable waffle that is Gender Trouble.
Radical feminism posits that women are oppressed as a class on the basis of their biological sex and presumed reproductive capabilities. This structural oppression of women as a sex-class is known as Patriarchy and is imposed through gender. As Simone de Beauvoir argued in The Second Sex, ‘the division of the sexes is a biological fact, not an event in human history’.
Julie Bindel has reiterated the radical feminist position that ‘Genitals determine our physical, biological sex, and indicates whether we are male or female, not whether we are destined to like pink or blue. No one, medic or otherwise, can ‘determine’ gender because it has no basis in material reality’.
After two trials described by Amnesty International as “grossly unfair,” Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh has been sentenced to a total of 38 years in prison and 148 lashes.
Critics from around the world decried the outcome of Sotoudeh’s case. Amnesty International said it was harshest sentence documented against a human rights defender in Iran in recent memory. Hadi Ghaemi, the executive director of the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran, told CBS News it exposed “the insecurity the regime has to any peaceful challenge.”
Why are so many women scared to speak out about gender politics? Why are so many ‘gender critical’ women scared to use their own name?
Online and offline I hear women saying, ‘I’d like to speak up but I don’t dare… I’m worried I’d lose my job… or my husband would lose his job… there’s a trans child at my kids’ school… I’m worried people will hate me… I’m worried people will bully my kids… I’ll lose all my friends… I don’t want to be seen as transphobic…’
How many tyrants could have been overthrown if all the people they were oppressing had risen up en masse- at exactly the same time- with a roaring ‘no’? How many lives could have been saved if entire armies had refused to fight unjust wars? But we are not all selfless heroes, ready to die for our cause. While there’s no doubt there can be hefty consequences to speaking out, there’s also no doubt that speaking out is what is needed.
Gender-critical feminist philosophers oppose a policy of self-identification alone, oppose the inclusion of male people in women’s sport, oppose the inclusion of male people in women’s single-sex spaces or services (such as changing rooms, and domestic-violence or rape shelters), and oppose open access to women’s single-sex provisions (such as women’s prizes or award shortlists). They are concerned with the impacts of the wider “gender-identity” narrative upon children and young people, and on gay and lesbian youth; particularly as it displaces the idea of gender as a set of harmful norms, imposed on the basis of sex.
The foundational commitment of philosophy, my field, is the pursuit of truth.
Even if one were to accept the goal of suppressing truth-seeking for the purpose of helping a vulnerable group, the argument is dubious. The link between suicidal ideation and social treatment needs to be established, whereas often it is just assumed. If the suicidal ideation has other causes—such as childhood sexual abuse, or mental-health problems—then social treatment as the sex one identifies with is not likely to resolve it. If trans vulnerability can be met with third spaces rather than by granting access to binary spaces in line with gender identity, then the link between vulnerability and full inclusion in line with sex identification is severed.