Saturday, December 30, 2017

We are Not Allowed to Talk About Transgender Misogyny

I consider myself gender non-conforming and I love gender non-confirming people.  I have no problems with trans folk.  

I am a person who has studied cults.  I wrote an article about Tantra cults for Rebelle magazine.  My cult alarm bells first went off about the transgender community when the Beltane gathering in my progressive town, was torn apart when a trans woman asked if she was welcome to join the women’s circle portion of the gathering.   Beltane is the pagan Celtic gathering that celebrates sex and fertility, and the gender-separated circles were only a small part of the weekend-long event.  There was also a third circle for people that didn't identify as men or women.  This trans woman claimed, however, that she had to be welcomed in the womens circle.

The decision was yes, she was welcome, but there was some disagreement as to whether wombs were a necessary part of the womb magic.  She declared she would not come when some people felt that way.  My intuition told me that she had no interest in pagan ceremony and magic, as she had made some disparaging comments about it.  I wondered if she was just interested in making a point.  On the event page, she personally insulted the priestess who had worked hard for a decade to make this gathering happen.  What really bothered me was that no one objected.  The priestess and the other organizer quit, the gathering was strained, and it probably won’t happen again.  In my discussions with the trans woman, she repeatedly tried to get me to answer the question "Are trans women REAL women?".  Saying that trans women aren’t “real” women, she claimed, is akin to saying that they aren’t real people, and that this is “literal” violence against them.

I did research.  I found this ideology all over the internet, with the exact wording, including liberal misuse of the word “literal”.  This argument makes no sense to me.  We can disagree on the meaning of the word “woman”, and still believe trans women are real people who deserve full human rights.  “Literal” violence are blows, not words.

I have deep compassion for the literal violence, discrimination, and hate that trans people encounter.  I deplore violence and hate with all my being.  This violence is committed by men, and is part of the umbrella of patriarchal hatred towards the feminine.  But I have found no evidence that women saying we are different from trans women is a cause for male violence.  Do we really think that the kind of vicious asshole who beats up trans women care what women think?

The Myth of Innate Gender Identity

There are many women, especially feminists, who are questioning the idea of gender identity.  The new dogma states that gender identity is innate and fixed, which is exactly the notion that has been used to oppress women for millennia . Women, the theory goes, have “female brains”, meaning naturally inferior. Feminism, on the other hand, holds that gender roles are socially constructed.  What does it mean to have a “female brain” in a male body? What does it mean to “live as a woman”: you carry a purse? Wear lipstick? Act demure and submissive?  I do none of these things.  Let’s not confuse patriarchal stereotypes for reality.

I enthusiastically accept anyone’s expression of gender.  I love men in dresses.  Me, my “gender expression” changes from moment to moment. If I do construction, I wear Carharts. If I dance flamenco, I wear long skirts. Sometimes lipstick seems like a fun idea. I carry bags, which I am told is a feminine thing, but to me it just seems useful. All of these traits are arbitrarily assigned a gender. That assignment may change from culture to culture, or even individual to individual. 

Back when the internet was young, I designed an internet experiment: I put the BEM sex roles inventory online. The BEM sex roles inventory is used by psychologists to assess how well someone conforms to western gender roles. There are a number of traits which have been judged by American college students to be feminine, masculine, or neutral. Then you, the one taking the survey, rate yourself on each trait: On a scale from 1 to 7, how likely are you to be: Submissive? Creative? Nurturing? And so on. In the end you get a masculine score and a feminine score. You can be high on both, meaning you have a lot of both masculine traits and feminine traits (as defined by our particular culture); or you can be low on both, meaning you mostly identify with neutral traits. You can be high masculine and low feminine, or vice versa.

I got thousands of people to take this test (by asking my famous (late) friend Robert Anton Wilson to link to it from his site) and graphed them on a graph with one axis feminine (the XX axis), one masculine (the XY axis). I used pink dots for women and blue dots for men. Well, the vast majority of dots were in the middle. There was a cluster of blue dots in the high masc, low fem area, and a cluster of pink dots in the high fem, low masc area. So women are slightly more likely to display these so-called feminine traits, and opposite for men. But we are all somewhere along a spectrum. And even these traits are arbitrarily determined by a culture, and largely a result of conditioning.

If gender is arbitrarily constructed by societies and individuals, and exists along a spectrum, why do we need to make up these limiting boxes for it? How many “feminine” traits do I need to exhibit to be considered gender-conforming? 10? 100? 60 percent? No one can say. So why not just say that we all exist along a gender spectrum which is changing all the time? Only biological sex exists. The vast majority of humanity are male(XY) and female(XX), with about 1.7% intersex (XXY, X). Almost no trans people are intersex.

I am all about accepting each one of us as the unique, ever-changing snowflake of personality that we are. But biology matters. Every one of my cells is stamped with an XX. I bleed, and when I do, I feel the extraordinary power of this — it can confer strength, intensity, poignancy, pain. I practice chi gung, and feel the reality of the chi from my ovaries and uterus. My orgasms are different from mens’. I possess the potential to grow new life; I experience the terror of potential pregnancy. My hormones create a very poignant reality for me. These things all matter. Energy is real. Biology is real.

Besides my biology, the only other thing I have in common with other women is the experience of growing up female in a male world. My consciousness arose at a time when I saw no role models that showed me that women could be presidents, CEOs, comedians, or carpenters. Mainstream movies and novels were always about men and boys, with girls and women merely objects to be won.  I was forced to ignore hideously misogynistic jokes by boys. I didn’t even know women had orgasms until I was 21; sex was all about the blow job and the male orgasm. I internalized society’s fear and hatred of women and of feminine men (“pussies”).

I don’t relate to any of the stereotypes of femininity — extreme emotionality (actually i think men are the emotional ones), submissiveness, nurturing, etc — but my female biology is a strong reality, as is my social conditioning to defer to and serve men.

Male and female brains? This study and this study found no difference between them. Male and female nature? What does that even mean?  This is what women have been fighting against for 100 years. What does it mean to “feel like a woman” or “treat someone like a woman.”? In any case, a man saying he feels like a woman is really saying that he feels like he imagines what a woman feels like. 

If gender identity were hardwired in the brain, identical twins would have the same gender identity 100 percent of the time, but only in 20% of cases did both twins turn out to be transgender.

People who believe in the innate gender theory often cite the Russo study showing that transgender brains are more similar to the brains of the opposite sex.   But closer looks at this study reveal that the slight differences found related to sexual orientation.

I do not relate to this “cis” label applied to me.  I do not believe in binary gender, but a gender spectrum, as I have said.  My gender identity is free and fluid, though if I had to describe what I feel like, I would identify as a gay man in a woman’s body.  When I see gay men, they feel like my people. I am very attracted to them, often.  But they don’t recognize me as one of them, and no one really expects them to.  They certainly have no interest in sex with me, and no one would expect them to.

Yet, many people believe that lesbians who refuse sex with a person with a penis are transphobic bigots.  There was a panel, closed to women, of trans women confronting the “problem” of lesbians refusing to have sex with them. This enrages me.  Anyone has a right to refuse sex with anyone, for any reason.  Sadly, too, lesbians and gay folk are being erased by the pressure to transition to the opposite sex.  

Recently, a lesbian who went to a lesbian club in Washington was approached by a man who showed her a picture of him dressed as a woman, demanding that she tell him what a beautiful woman he was, and she said:  "You look like a beautiful man dressed as a woman, that's fine, that's great".  This guy mobilized an army of people who stalked her and her friends, patrolling outside the restaurant they went to, and following her the following day to a bookstore, making up lies about things she had said, and threatening her on social media.  Other feminist authors have been shouted out and harassed when giving talks by transactivists.  This is just the beginning of mob harassment of feminists by trans extremists.

There is nothing gender conforming about me.  I reject this label of cis and the idea that it gives me privilege.  My female biology has been the source of oppression for 5000 years.  So forgive me if I don’t accept a man’s assertion that he is a woman, without the biology and conditioning that have shaped my reality.  All of that stuff matters.  Women have a right to define ourselves.

A Safe Sex Guide issued by the Human Rights Campaign asks us to say things like "pregnant people" because "mothers" may offend trans people; "menstruators" instead of "women".   Who cares if actual women are offended?  And it gets worse: vaginas are something that post-op transwomen have, while women have "front holes."  The awesome play by Eve Ensler, Vagina Monologues, is no longer allowed.

The very existence of women, and womens’ oppression as a class, have been supplanted by the trans rights movement.  Womens’ studies programs have all been replaced by gender studies programs that are centered around transgender people.  

An African American woman reflects, "But what if, instead of wanting to be white, I wanted to be a man? What if, instead of crying to my parents that I was really a white person, I told them that I was really a man and that I desperately wanted to change my body to match my mind? If, in this scenario, you think that my parents should applaud my courage, accept my new gender identity, and run to the nearest surgeon, please ask yourself: “Why?””

What are the limits of the idea that it is a basic human right to affirm someone's identity?  Should people who identify as Cherokee be accepted by the tribe? 

Female Spaces

Based on the core ideology that trans women are literal women, trans women are insisting that they be allowed into female spaces: locker rooms, homeless shelters, athletic competitions, and most tragically, rape shelters.   

We are seeing the end of womens’ sports.  How can women compete against male strength?  A transgender woman named Fallon Fox won the Womens’ Mixed Martial Arts competition, beating her competitor to a pulp in two minutes flat.  

Personally, I'm fine with trans people using whatever bathrooms they like.  No one spends much time in bathrooms, and everyone has her own stall.   Although it IS true that there are plenty of incidents of predators accessing female spaces to spy on or video women, that accessing female spaces is a huge fantasy for sexual deviants, and, there is not a single reported incident of a hate crime against a transgender person in a male restroom.  Not one.   Ever.   But whatever.  And most transgender women retain their penises, which mens' bathrooms are built for.  But whatever.  Let's sacrifice some women to make some other people happy.

What I'm concerned with are spaces where women and girls sleep and undress publicly.  While I understand that most transgender women are kind, peaceful people who just want to undress, the new laws are making it possible for any male predator to access womens’ spaces.   A man doesn’t have to do anything but show up and say that he identifies as a woman.   When our feminist grandmothers won the right to separate spaces safe from male predators, women could finally take a place in public life.  

I am concerned with the women most at risk, survivors of assault, women in prison, homeless women.  I know I am privileged.  They are not.

This is especially crucial for the most vulnerable women who need rape and homeless shelters.  A rape survivor could be traumatized by seeing a penis in this situation.  And while of course most transgender women would never harm anyone, now that the laws are changing, we are starting to see numerous news stories about molestation, voyeurism, and violence against women by men claiming to be transgender.  

This article documents how half of transgender women prisoners are sex offenders or violent offenders.  Here a just a few examples:  In 2014, Jessica (Christopher) Hambrook molested women at two Toronto womens’ shelters, having previously molested women from ages 5 to 53. In 2016, a man making no attempt to present as a woman undressed in front of young girls at a womens’ locker room in Washington state, saying he had a right to use the locker room that corresponds with his identity, according to a state law. When a transwoman named Luis Morales brutally raped, beat, and murdered a 13-yr-old girl and set her body on fire, transactivists came to his defense!  Last November in Oakland, a transwoman, Dana Rivers, was charged with killing a lesbian couple and their adopted son. In January 2017 in Berkeley, queer activist Pablo Gomez Jr. was charged with the stabbing death of one woman and the attempted murder of another woman. Here is a list of more news stories (scroll down).

None of the sweet peaceful trans women you and I know, who just want to be left alone, would never molest anyone.  But that doesn’t stop anyone from using the laws to do so.  Google it.  You will find numerous examples of predation in female spaces.  Bathrooms too.

Womens’ spaces have also been crucial for women to gather for empowerment, to organize, and to discuss the ramifications of our biology.  It has always been threatening to the patriarchy for women to organize to gain independent from men.  Losing our spaces means the end of that ability to organize.

So women are told that we must sacrifice our own safety to accommodate men --  both feminine men who are attacked, and the men who do the attacking -- because male violence is inevitable.  A true social justice warrior would turn their attention to the men doing the attacking, not to the women who are forced to turn over their spaces.

There was a female music festival in Michigan, MichFest, that was a haven for women for 40 years. Although they did not exclude trans women, they believed in the need for womens’ spaces in a patriarchal world. There, a woman could get as drunk as she wanted without fear of rape or harassment. Trans activists surrounded the festival and slashed tires, cut waterlines, stalked the perimeter with illegal weapons, and blanketed the festival with pictures of their dicks inscribed with the phrase “A hot load from my monstrous tranny-cock embodies womanhood more than the pieces of menstral [sic] art your transphobic cunts could ever hope to create”.  That was the end of this festival.   Women who played music there were banned from playing in other places.

Violent Threats

While most transgender women would never threaten rape and violence like the protestors of this festival, there are transactivists who do.  The site shows examples of people online who threaten repulsive violence against “TERFs”, which stands for Trans-Exclusive Radical Feminists:  women who believe it’s important to have our own spaces.   If you do a google image-search on “Punch a terf” or “kill all terfs” you will find examples of this:  ““Wipe them from the earth” “prepare your pathetic, dough faces for a sweet, sweet pummeling”, “literally kill all TERFs”, “enjoy my ladydick in your mouth cuntwipe”, "slowly and horrendously murder terfs in saw-like torture machines and contraptions".

I came across this clip from a TV show with a panel to discuss transgender:  trans woman Zoe Tur placed her hand on editor Ben Shapiro’s shoulder and threatened to send him home in an ambulance.  What was shocking to me was that none of the other people on the panel objected to this.  Is threatening violence in the name of transgender people now totally acceptable?

If anyone finds any examples of women threatening violence against transgender people, please let me know.  

We are told that we need to accept everything transgender folks say because they are the most oppressed, therefore they are always right. Speaking the truth, that is, that men can’t magically turn into women, is now considered bigotry and violence. We must agree with everything because trans women are beaten up and harassed more often than women are (according to their own statistics and self-reports).  (Is this the Oppression Olympics?) This phrasing obscures an important truth: the ones doing the beating and harassing are MEN. It is men who beat women and feminine men.  

A feminist commenter says: “Men who do not properly perform masculinity are bullied and it is awful. Many of these men are gay, others are simply seen as effeminate. It must stop. But the solution to that bullying and homophobia is not to claim that these men are ACTUALLY women, it is to challenge the notions of masculinity and femininity themselves, as well as to challenge homophobia. Extreme violence against transpeople is a serious problem, but it is not perpetrated by feminists. It is a manifestation of violent misogyny.“

And there is misogyny in some transgender rhetoric, as well.  One website on Why You Should Get A Transgender Girlfriend, which has now been taken down, says that men should choose trans women because biological women are fat, shrill, masculine, stupid, bitchy, and entitled!  YouTube videos with affirmations to help trans women believe they are women include affirmations such as “I am submissive”.  

The Ideology is Failing to Serve the Needs of Trans People Themselves

Not only is trans politics threatening to disappear women as biological identities, opening up women’s spaces to male predators, and shutting down feminist discourse, but, it is also harming trans people themselves.  Studies show that trans people have higher than average levels of depression, anxiety, and mental illness that aren’t always relieved by transitioning. 
A Dutch study showed that major mood disorders, dissociative disorders and psychotic disorders were reported in 79% of transgenders.  A Swedish study showed that sex-reassigned persons also had an increased risk for suicide attempts and psychiatric inpatient care.  It is now politically incorrect in the US to question a person who thinks they have gender dysphoria, to look for other treatments for the depression and anxiety they are experiencing. So we see trans folks who, despite the expensive, dangerous, and irreversible surgeries, still feel suicidal.  Yet they are silenced (by the same threats used to silence feminists) when they try to speak out about this.  Do we treat people with anorexia with liposuction?  This is dangerously failing to meet the real needs of people who are suffering.

I have deep compassion for anyone who is suicidal.   While I understand that the deplorable discrimination trans people face is a huge factor, it may not be the only one for some, and we need to address other potential reasons for this.  They are pressured by the community to think that transition is the only therapy they need.  When in fact, there is no evidence to suggest that transition reduces suicide, in fact the oppositeWebsites coach teenagers on the ways to use the threat of suicide to convince their parents to bless their taking hormones, and tell teenagers that friends and family that caution them on the risks deserve to be slapped ("self-defense") or disowned.  Many parents report that their teens developed "rapid-onset" gender dysphoria after a social media binge, and that whole peer groups came out at the same time.

The high levels of trans suicide is given as the reason why we must uncritically accept every aspect of the transgender ideology, and avoid saying anything that might trigger them.  The threat of suicide has become emotional blackmail that is repeated at every possible moment to silence feminists.  Ironically, the activists borrow from feminist and anti-racism movements, adopting the language to position people as oppressors.  This forces well-meaning social justice supporters to “affirm transgender peoples’ identities” and to make them the center of the conversation, to stop them killing themselves.  The intentions are excellent, but avoiding the truth is not doing them any favors.  The world is a harsh place, and we can’t be protected from all triggers (the Black Mirror episode where an implant in a child scrambles her vision when she sees something upsetting doesn't end well).  It is best to face the truth, and to love and accept ourselves and each other as we are.  And to make sure we treat all the root causes of suicidal feelings.  There need be NO stigma in mental illness.

Human Rights Violation of Children

Most disturbing of all is giving children dangerous hormones.  Children have always played with different identities, but 60-90% of children who express transgender feelings grow out of it. Tragically, doctors are pushing hormones on children behind their parents’ back. Do you start to see the enormous amounts of money that doctors and pharmaceutical companies are making on this phenomenon, and how that plays into the silencing of discourse around it?

Beloved, well-respected psychologist Kenneth Zucker was fired from his job as head of the Child, Youth, and Family Gender Identity Clinic after tranactivists petitioned for his removal because he tried to help children who believed they were trans to feel comfortable with their bodies, instead of instantly putting them on hormone blockers.  All he was advocating for was to spend a year counselling them to accept their bodies before starting on drugs!

This is not the first time Big Medicine has experimented on a generation;  the long term effects of ADHD drugs were not well known before giving them to so many children.  We do have one example of children taking estrogen who were followed up later:  in the 50s and 60s tall girls were given it to stunt their growth (another sad manifestation of patriarchy, men have to be taller than women), and now are dealing with severe health consequences, including cancer at a young age.  We might theorize that male bodies, not intended for estrogen, would have even more side effects over the years.

A documentary called Transgender Kids: Who Knows Best which questions the safety of immediately putting children on hormones was shut down by CBC after transactivists complained.  It was a balanced discussion, but is now banned in Canada.  It talks about how autism is 7 times higher in trans-identifying children, and many have anxiety,depression and OCD.  It mentions one child who started identifying as a boy when she saw her mother murdered.  

In the end is an interview with a woman who has de-transitioned after hormones and surgery.  She says that she received a lot of pressure to transition in her youth.  She was basically told transition was the only cure for the hatred she felt toward her body.  "Transition or die", she was told.  She will never have her breasts back and will always have a beard, and now she is facing death threats from trans activists for telling anyone she has de-transitioned.  (The interview is anonymous).  She says:  "If a young girl came to me saying that she hated her body, I would tell her, climb trees, dig in the dirt, find peace with your body."

Another woman who de-transitioned did it because she really didn’t feel like a man, or relate to male bro-talk.  Looking back, she thinks that she first transitioned because she was attracted to women and because of internalized misogyny;  her friends said she must really be a man.  Now years off the testosterone, she will never get rid of the beard.  She talks about how embarrassing it was to de-transition after asking her friends and family to accept the change.  Her de-transition support group, which gets new members each week, has been helpful.  Perhaps more people wish they could de-transition but don’t because of cognitive dissonance, the fear of looking, or the threats from trans people who want to pretend that de-transition doesn’t happen.

Another person spoke of how she transitioned back to female because on T she could not relate to other people’s emotions or feel things deeply.  Both de-transitioned women have not been able to get rid of constant vaginal infections and other intense side effects years after stopping T.

But activists convinced Canada to justify intervention by the government to medicate children if their parents do not agree.  How could young children really know who they are?  If children say they want to eat cake for breakfast every day, do we let them? 

Girls as young as 14 have had their breasts removed.  The CEO of Mermaids took her son abroad to have his penis removed when he was just 16. 

As I’ve said, children who identify as the opposite sex have always existed in patriarchy.  But now this trend is so popular that kids find it on the internet and wonder if gender dysphoria is the cause of their problems.  Maybe they’re too smart to fit in, they're gay, or bipolar, or just going through the usual hell of puberty, but trans identity is offered as a solution:  a special identity, an instant group of friends, an end to hating their bodies.

Does anybody know how much information kids are given about the real consequences of making this choice?  Do counsellors tell them:  we know these drugs have side effects but we really don’t know how dangerous they might be;   even if you stop taking them that you may never be able to have children;  you may never be able to have sex in the usual ways;  you will be dependent on these expensive drugs for the rest of your life;  you will be exposed to harassment, discrimination, and even violence; and even if you stop taking them you will probably not look like a man or woman ever again.  That if you eventually take the final step to surgery, you will have to pump your penis or penetrate yourself for the rest of your life.

I know these topics are off limits, very sensitive topics.  But .. we need to talk about it. This is an extremely serious choice.  The stakes are very high.  For adults too, but can a child really make a choice whether or not they want to have kids of their own someday?!?

Statistics are that only 35% of girls transitioning to transmen receive ANY counselling about the risks.  Diabetes, endometrial cancer, breast cancer, neurogenerative diseases ..  these are the known risks.    Somehow people who avoid dairy treated with hormones think it's totally fine to take opposite sex hormones?  Did you know that cross-sex treatment with sex hormones is an off-label use, not approved by the FDA?

It seems that the small number of people with genuine gender dysphoria will identify with the opposite sex from a very young age and will continue to do so in puberty.  For them, it may be true that all of the extreme and extraordinary risks associated with this treatment are worth it. (Although, there still has not been a scientific attempt to study gender dysphoria to find less risky treatments.  Now, these studies are politically impossible.  Suicide is still just as common in transitioned youth with full support from family and friends, and, there have never been studies of suicidality in youth whose gender fluidity is supported but is not supported in transitioning.)

I think about myself in puberty.  I come from a family of estrogenic disorders, so puberty was especially hellish.  I was depressed, had debilitating menstrual cramps, and covered in acne on my face, chest, and back.   I hated my body as it developed curves;  self-hatred began as I examined each body part through the male gaze and realized that I did NOT resemble a Victoria Secret model.  I began hating my body and became anorexic (could it be related to the fact that my dad had a bad habit of ogling super super skinny young girls, and now that I had grown thighs, I wasn't in that category?).  Is this not body dysphoria?  I had girl crushes, which I realized later were not sexual, but just intense friendships.  I hated makeup, dresses, shopping, and babies;  I loved computer programming and sci fi.  I hated the female role;  after extended family dinners, I was expected to join the women in cleaning up, even though I was much more interested in joining the men to talk politics.   What if someone had told me I could turn into a man?  Hell yeah!  What if I had started taking hormones only to later realize that I was exclusively attracted to men --- how many gay men would want someone with a vagina, or straight men someone with a beard?    And then, I would have transitioned back, to find that I would always have a beard, health problems, and be infertile.  Needless to say, I am intensely grateful this was not an option.  I was suffering so much, I might have gone for it.   Fortunately I came to acceptance of my body through medicating with plants, and reading feminist theory.  No testosterone required,

Parents are told that they must support their childrens' identities and give them the drugs, even though the majority of them will not grow up to be trans.   If parents still try to resist, social services can intervene.  As Debra Soh for CBC news says, “The issue is no longer about what's in the best interest of these children, but about winning, at any cost, the ideological war.”

So why is it so important to the ideology to prove the existence of transgender children? Because this would prove that gender identity is real, inborn, and unchangeable.  For many, yes, I can believe there was never any choice and there never will be.  But there are many others who will change their mind.  De-transition video diaries abound.

I’ve seen heartbreaking clips of young children torturing themselves with choosing their genders, saying, I like dresses but I like football.  They're torn apart, thinking they have to choose.   Why can’t we have it all? The dresses AND the football.  We can support our children’s identities by loving them exactly as they are, encouraging their explorations.  We can tell them that they can do anything in the world they want (aside from reproductive functions of the other sex.)

How does this new ideology not support a rigid binary?   Now kids can choose their gender and suppress all the traits that don’t fit with it.  We’ll end up with a bunch of people on the far poles of the two-dimensional gender spectrum, a world of Kens and Barbies, only now those binaries will be chosen and not just assigned.  Personally I have little interest in Ken and Barbie.  In my perfect world, we would all strive for balance of the masculine and feminine in ourselves.

Parents who speak out are, predictably, accused of transphobia and being overall horribly people. Many lose their jobs.  Many are threatened with losing custody.  But doctors (even though they are making a killing), nurses, and therapists are starting to whisper about the insanity of what is happening.  Referrals of children to gender clinics is skyrocketing exponentially. 

I would venture to say that in a non-patriarchal society, gender-nonconforming children would simply be seen as human beings along a spectrum of gender, and nothing would be thought of it. They would not be bullied, and would not suffer. Only patriarchal societies punish males who express their feminine sides, which creates the need for a third sex. From my research I found that in Native American societies that were patriarchal, mostly in the Plains regions, there were more than two sexes. Non-patriarchal Native groups, tolerant of androgyny, did not seem to need this.

The third sex is common in patriarchal Asian societies, such as India and southeast Asia. As I sit here writing this, I am in Thailand, where the cathueys, called “ladyboys” in English (which as far as I can figure is not a slur), are common and well-accepted.  They are considered a third sex. Legally in Thailand they must check the “male” box, and in India the “other” box. This is important for statistical purposes, since Mens’ Rights groups are trying to claim that women are almost as violent as men. (While statistics show that 90.3% of murderers are male).   Allowing trans women to check the "woman" box legally would make it impossible to have reliable census data about men and women.

The New People Identifying as Transgender

So this small number of people whose gender dysphoria has always existed are now being joined by a much larger number of people.  The number of SRS has increased by 400% since 2010.  Some of these are people with other types of dysphoria who are misdiagnosed, as I said.  Some of them are cross-dressers who transition later in life.  Since transgender people are now considered brave, popular, and trendy, who can blame them for preferring to identify as transgender than to identify as crossdressers?  Here is one woman’s story about how her 40 year old husband started wanting to transition after he started watching a porn featuring trans women.  

This is not an isolated incident:  there's a whole community of women called “trans widows” whose heterosexual cross-dressing husbands transition late in life.  The stories abound, and the wives are expected to do all the supporting and receive no support.  They are often gaslighted and abused.  When they reach out, they are gaslighted by their communities, told that only the partner’s needs matter because he is the most oppressed creature to walk the planet.  These men claiming to be trans have done trans woman a huge disservice, and the backlash is here.

The Censorship

And so the meme spreads.   Those who speak out are called transphobic and threatened with rape and violence, even death.  By silencing feminist voices, the trans-extremist agenda has all but destroyed the movement to liberate us all from the patriarchy.   Extremists are dictating to women what we are and how we should behave.  Anti-woman slurs have become commonplace, accepted, and even celebrated in a community that claims to be about social justice.  

Any time you see suppression of discourse, or insults used in place of logic, this should be a sign to pay attention. A researcher in the UK decided to study the phenomenon of de-transitioning after he met a doctor who had performed 7 de-transition surgeries in the past year. His study was approved, but then cancelled by the university because it was politically incorrect.

Gender-critical websites and blogs have been shut down by transactivists.  Expect this blog to disappear along with all of the other writing I have done on it.

We can be sensitive and compassionate AND retain our critical thinking skills.  We can support the rights of all people to full human equality, and to gather with others of their kind.

A book by UC Berkeley psychology professor Margaret Singer, “Cults in Our Midst”, exposes the deceptive mind control techniques of cults. Some of these are being used by transactivists. This article, written by a trans woman, talks about how billionaires from the medical and cosmetic industries are behind the cult, and says “It appears as if the creation and promotion of trans cult activism and ideology is part of a larger social engineering agenda, and one that requires everybody’s attention….It thus becomes incumbent upon freedom loving citizens to speculate on the reasons why our leaders are supporting the mass delusion that is transgender activism.”

She goes on to say: “The Gender Identity Clinics are a new phenomenon that are busy indoctrinating and conditioning children as young as three, thus we can expect a totally new and totally different generation of trans to emerge in the near future, all chemically dependent for life, all likely to seek out surgery to alter their bodies, and all likely to be all-in members of the radical trans cult….It would be tempting to simply regard all of this as merely absurd and comical, were it not for the fact that it is currently putting grown men in swimming pool changerooms with women and young girls …”

Besides the medical and pharmaceutical industries, billionaires such as George Soros are pouring huge amounts of money into the movement.  Slick, hip, high-budget propaganda videos routinely insult women, feminists, and gay people.

When I wrote the original article, I got messages from women all over the world thanking me for voicing the concerns that they knew they would be ostracized or threatened for voicing.  One woman from New Zealand said that a vagina festival to encourage women to love our bodies was shut down by transactivists who said vaginas are triggering to trans people.  A woman from Ireland, where abortion is still illegal, said that transactivists shut down the pro-choice movement saying that abortion is triggering to them.  A woman from Canada said that the homeless shelters in her city have been inflitrated by male predators posing as transwomen, so now women are back on the street.

Proposed Solutions

Again, I feel great compassion for trans people, the discrimination and violence they face, and how sensitive that makes them to triggers.   But we need to be able to talk openly about these very important issues.  Here are some possible solutions for discussion:

1.  The trans movement is in the public eye and is prompting a massive discussion around gender, which could be good.  Right now the movement is focused on forcing everyone to pretend to agree, on pain of physical violence or loss of livelihood, that trans woman ARE women. However, critical thinkers really, really, really don’t like being forced to believe something that doesn’t make sense to them.  This is causing a backlash among some of the most radical justice defenders out there, like me — and we are NOT all transphobic bigots.  

Instead, why not have the movement focus on the message that trans people are human beings who deserve full human rights?   Let’s spread the message that discrimination based on gender (or race) is illegal and wrong, and that violence or threats of violence are utterly unacceptable (whether towards trans people, or by them).  Triple the criminal penalties for discrimination and for assault.    Have criminal penalties for those who witness or even hear about assault without taking action — therefore, few guys will want to high-five their bro whose bragging about beating a trans person.  By making it completely unacceptable to commit acts of violence, we can change society within a generation.  After all, 20 years ago in Italy men constantly harassed women but they never do this anymore.  They changed so quickly!  It can happen.

However, I want to broach another off-limit topic:  that is, that some of the violence towards trans women is committed by men who felt “tricked”.  I understand that creates a horrible situation for trans women:  they are afraid to disclose because they may be assaulted if they do.  

I do NOT want to suggest that a victim is responsible for violence against them, because violence is never a victim’s fault.  I can't pretend to understand what it feels like to be a in their shoes.  But in the interest of minimizing suffering, it seems prudent to suggest that a trans woman disclose to a man she is flirting with in a public place, before sharing her contact info.   She could ask how he feels about dating trans people.  If he turns out to be a bigot, or to want to focus his dating energy only on women who can bear his children, better to know about it right away, and walk away in a safe place.  

It seems some trans people feel that their partners do not deserve to know, and that disclosing implies there is something abhorent.   But many people believe they have a right to know a partner’s genetic sex, and that trans people aren’t abhorrent but that anyone has the right to refuse intimacy for any reason.  I personally feel it’s morally incumbent on me to disclose the fact that I don’t plan to bear anyone’s kids to a potential partner before we get much further than a kiss.   I disclose my age soon after.  

It’s not up to me to tell people what to do, but online dating seems like a great option.  There are so many straight men in the world who adore trans women because they are unique and they embody the best of both worlds (literally).  These straight men love how well they relate to trans women and their familiar genitals.  There is a whole category of tourists that come to Thailand specifically for the ladyboys.  I might prefer to date people that adore me, rather than having to hide my past from my partner.

2.  For public spaces, like I said, I am suggesting that bathrooms be for anyone, but for spaces where women undress and sleep, that trans women be required to get a certificate saying that they have been been diagnosed with genuine gender dysphoria, and that they have been telling people they are women for a minimum of 2 years.  This is a step that few predators would be willing to meet.  This is actually what is currently done in the UK, although trans activists there are saying that the certificate is demeaning.

I also support the right of women to gather to talk about vaginas, womb magic, abortion, or anything else related to our biology, and besides that, that all public space be open to trans people.

3.  For children, I am in favor of waiting till 25 years of age to start on hormones, and ruling out mental illness.  Given the statistics that the majority of children do not persist in gender dysphoria, overall, I think this is the decision that will minimize the suffering for the most people.

Let us put aside divisions and unite on the things we all agree on.   An end to violence and violent threats immediately.  An end to discrimination in jobs or housing. 

Let no person stand by while another is harassed, bullied, or personally insulted.  Ever.  Let’s accept everyone exactly as they are.  Let’s encourage people to love themselves as they are before taking huge risks with healthy bodies.  

 We can create a culture of kindness and compassion.  And do away with stereotypes and boxes of all kind.  We are free!

Here are some links for more information:

I Know Who's Going to Be On The Wrong Side of History, and it isn't me. Brilliant.

  A detransitioned woman questions the ideology, saying that no other condition allows you to start on life-changing medication without any questioning, that the trans / cis binary makes no sense, and that the de-transition population is growing exponentially to the point where the trans activists will soon no longer be able to ignore them.

More links on violent crime against women by trans women:

A woman who was married for many years to a man who eventually transitioned in his 40s after getting into “tranny porn” tells her story in a talk to a Dutch audience (she is American but is not allowed to tell her story in the US).

4th Wave Now about the tragedy of trans-ing young children


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I've read some of your FB friends' responses, and if I'm honest I did react to some of your language with a similar surprise about the tone. But what I came away with from this post was about how the trans movement had been hijacked by some alt-right cross dressers who were essentially trolling everyone else (and are dealing a terrible blow to those who are genuinely trans.) The truth is, transwomen of color are much more vulnerable in every way, and also generally much less aggressive, I think, than this weird new alt-right subspecies that you mentioned (and I've seen one of them on youtube, who seems more intent on getting a reaction than finding community and acceptance.) So it almost seems like the really loud and aggressive trans folks are almost trying to undermine the movement from within by representing it in a violent way. Again, the consequences will fall on those marginalized and most at risk, young trans folks of color who aren't college students with support and a youtube channel. For them it's not an experiment or a way to troll society, it's who they are. And there are myriad reasons for someone to have gender dysphoria, related to chromosomal issues and/or hormonal issues. And on their behalf, I think it's important to find a way to be inclusive. "Membership" to the women's movement shouldn't be predicated on biology, but on willingness to work with women and women's allies of all genders in a non-violent way. We should all be able to speak our truth, while recognizing that the way we frame the conversation has real repercussions in society at large, and we need to work to bring the folks in from the margins always. It's dangerous out there. That's why they call it living on the edge.

    1. First of all, paragraph breaks are a real thing. It would be great if you'd consent to using them.

      "what I came away with from this post was about how the trans movement had been hijacked by some alt-right cross dressers who were essentially trolling everyone else (and are dealing a terrible blow to those who are genuinely trans.)"

      Let's assume, to give you a handicap in this discussion, that the above quote has some basis in fact. Laws are being made to placate the activists whom, you assume, are alt-right trolls. In Canada, it is now illegal to create or maintain any space for the use of women only.

      Shelters have already been invaded by the people you assume are on the fringes of the "real" trans movement and women evicted from those shelters in order to appease them. This has happened in Kelowna and Toronto, both cities have harsh winters and very little in the way of emergency housing for women or anyone else. Women fleeing abuse have had to move out onto the street, with their children, because their space was invaded by "trans women" (which, I would assert, is not a thing - these are people born in male bodies, many of whom are intact males taking cross-sex hormones and demanding to be treated as women.)

      So even if the spearhead of this movement was made up exclusively of dangerous alt-right predators, they are the ones who are influencing legislation to actively erase actual women. Trans-identified-men - TIMs are dominating both the conversation and the social movement toward female erasure and at the same time, they seem to be fully supportive of the eradication of equal employment standards for anyone but themselves and the dissolution of women's reproductive health services (see planned parenthood)

      If you are female, you should be alarmed at this. I am moving out of my reproductive years, and I don't have a job to lose, and so am comforted by the fact that as disastrous as this is for women, I won't have to contend with most of the fallout. However, I still feel it is my duty to speak out, as I would hope women of the generation before me spoke out, for the women who will bear the brunt of this movement in the form of reduced resources in every area of life, at every level, in favor of men who ape the stereotypical social customs we, as women were expected to perform, whether we liked it or not.

      I'm married to a man who is a feminist inasmuch as any man can be a feminist and I am not entirely sure I agree with your statement on the women's movement either. I am glad he supports feminism, I couldn't be married to him if he didn't. He does not contribute to the furtherance of sexist norms in our life or in his professional life, and yet, I do not feel this is entirely his fight to fight. When he said he wanted a pussy hat to wear to the women's march, I said "no."

      There is only one sex that bears young and only one sex that is persecuted for the fact of having ownership over that particular alchemy. Biology is real and we've been living with men's fear of it forever. Time to rise up.

      Many genders - two sexes. Sexism is a real thing. I don't care about genderism. I've never conformed to gender stereotypes so that is not my fight.

    2. Thank you Sister, well said!!!

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  4. "I am prepared for ostracism, threats, and even outright violence." Well, welcome to the world of being a transwoman. Or just a woman, which I am not obliged to call you. :)

  5. So TERFs have "lost their jobs, been ostracized by friends, and been censored" once again, welcome to the world of being a trans person.

  6. I hear many of your concerns. There is a branch of ANTIFA that is doing much of the protesting and threatening. Most of it is online communities which don’t reflect the real world. I know many trans women and men that don’t remotely resemble what you describe. The one thing you aren’t considering is Soul. I believe Soul is a part of how a person perceives and expresses their gender. If my Soul had the intention of experiencing itself as a female but was born into a male body, that would be quite disorienting. There is no privilege in growing up disoriented regardless of body parts. I would feel like me, a woman, stuck in the wrong body. This is often how trans people describe their experience. Your article is negating their experience of which you have knowledge. I just think the spiritual aspect of this has to be considered.

  7. Wonderful, critical and compassionate article. Thank you.

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