This is another throwback from August 2010, brought to you by special request.
Look, you don’t have to believe me, but I do not hate transsexuals. I am not afraid of them. It’s not a fucking phobia. I believe firmly that transsexuals have the right to pursue life on their own terms and to be free from harassment, violence, and other forms of social terrorism. In fact, if we were IRL and someone started talking shit about all trans people, I’d put the liberal smack-down on their ass. I’d be all: the oppressive gender binary is whack and sex roles are for tools, fools, get yo’ mind right! Or something like that. But seriously, I’m not trying to be malicious and I do not like hate-speech on my blog.
When I criticize trans politics and ideologies, it’s not motivated by hate. It’s motivated by rational disagreement with the ideas, in no particular order:
- that there is NO difference between bio males and trans men or between bio females and trans women
- that anyone can transcend their gendered social conditioning, or ERASE internalization of their past conditioning
- that g/jender identity has a biological basis or is an otherwise essential trait of humanity
- that it is politically and socially unproblematic for individual people to voluntarily pass as members of lower social class (male to female, white to black, able-bodied as physically disabled)
- that individual solutions (sex reassignment surgery) can materially impact structural inequalities (coercive forces of gender normalization)
Thinking trans people are freaks or immoral or don’t deserve human rights etc. is NOT the same as believing that trans survival techniques (and the I-dentity movement) fall short of political and/or social progress.
“Let’s do a thought experiment and imagine, for a moment, that reliable scientific evidence for, say, the biological origin of male violence emerges. Let’s assume that this evidence is completely incontrovertible and undeniably true. What will feminists do in response? Well, firstly, they might give up. I don’t think this is likely, though it would certainly be very disheartening to women (such as myself) who have based their entire philosophy on the assumption that social construction is all. Secondly, they might turn to science for a solution. This option is so ludicrous to me that I had never even considered it before yesterday, but I suppose we might as well have a bit of fun with it. So, even supposing that the technology exists to “correct” whatever biological thing it is that causes male violence, how would it be implemented? How would feminists get control of the technology and convince everyone else to let them do it? Who would decide how to use it, and who to use it on? etc. etc. The very idea is farcical.
In fact I think what would probably happen is that feminists, after the initial disappointment, would go back to doing what they were doing before the announcement: i.e., working to reduce the social and cultural factors that work to enforce women’s subordination (which, unlike biological factors, UNDENIABLY EXIST). Because even if there are biological factors involved, reducing social and cultural factors will make a real difference to women’s lives. This is what we can change, and what feminists have been changing for years, with some degree of success. So in other words, caring about the science at all would have been a bit of a waste of time and energy.”
Feminism is not a lifestyle. Feminism is not an I-dentity.
Feminism is not about personal self-assessments of empowerment wherein individual women learn to feel good about themselves–while women as a class are substantially deprived of intellectual authority and socio-political influence.
Feminism is not about formal equality with men, such that women emulate male behavior and strive for male-defined “success.”
Feminism is not about the infinite inclusion of social causes within our purview.
Feminism is not about fantasies of revolution, mysticism, or the divine feminine.
Feminism is political. Feminism’s subject is the class:women.
Feminist analysis is directed at political structures, institutions, and principles of social organization.
Feminism deconstructs, with ultimate the purpose of destroying, artificial power relations between the sexes.
Feminist action aims to improve the status and lives of women as a class by confronting the social structures that support male supremacy.