Posted in Gender

The gender-industrial complex, Part XII (What is to be done?)

Warning: Any hateful, threatening, abusive comments will be deleted and the commenters blacklisted. If you can’t bear a critical look at the media narrative you’ve absorbed, you’ve got a lot to learn about maturity and the importance of listening to other voices.

What exactly can we do to fight back against this tidal wave which arose within the last five years, when there are so few questioning, skeptical, critical voices in the media and anyone who dares not go along with it is denounced as some horrible bigot?

1. Deliver your message respectfully, cite valid sources, and bring up science and history. You’ll notice I haven’t once, over this series, used words like tranny, she-male, he-she, or laydeeface. I’m not about disrespecting other people, even when they use hateful language like “cis scum” and “TERF.” Never fight fire with fire. When people see you’re not just some rube with a computer ranting away, but someone delivering a message articulately, they’ll be more likely to listen and pay attention.

2. Stop using ridiculous language the transactivists have made up in the last few years. It just validates their cult-like narrative to call yourself “cisgender” or talk about “transmisogyny,” when no one outside of a very small group actually uses such words. For that matter, we should also call a double mastectomy what it really is, not use the euphemism “top surgery.”

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3. Defend yourself when you’re baselessly accused of “transphobia.” Actual transphobia would be bullying someone (real bullying, not making them use a gender-neutral bathroom), refusing to hire someone or rent them an apartment based only on being trans, using mocking slur words, or firing someone who starts transitioning.

4. Leave skeptical comments on news stories and YouTube videos, whether they’re nationwide or just local. The more people who publicly question this trend, the more encouraged others will be to break their silence and start speaking out too.

5. Let kids go back to just being kids! I grew up in a world where boys and girls played with all sorts of toys, and a girl playing with trucks and dressing in blue or a boy playing with dolls and growing long hair wasn’t seen as a reason to alert parents and send the kid off to a gender therapist. Left alone, at least 80% of children eventually grow out of dysphoria, and many who persist in gender-atypicality turn out gay.

6. If you’re part of the LGB community (which I’m not), try to steer organizations and news outlets dominated by the T back onto their original track. Perhaps you can ask why your campus gay-straight alliance has almost nothing but trans-themed activities, or write a letter to PFLAG asking where all the support for GLB youth went.

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7. If your child announces s/he’s the opposite sex, or wants to be the opposite sex, start a healthy dialogue by asking why s/he wants to change sex, and what s/he thinks being the opposite sex is all about. Children notoriously have an immature view of the world, minus years of life experience and cognitive development. For this reason, we don’t let children vote, drive, get married, live independently, work, or have mortgages either. Many times, they hear an adult word or concept and mistakenly apply their childish understanding of the world to it, like thinking sex must mean French kissing.

8. Don’t discount legitimate dysphoria among teens and twentysomethings. Many girls don’t have a very healthy, loving attitude towards their bodies because the popular media doesn’t exactly positively celebrate things like menstruation and giving birth, and there’s the very real fear of rape and sexual harassment simply for having a female body. A sensitive young man can also experience dysphoria and a confused attitude towards his sexuality, such as is on display in these three letters to Scarleteen:

“I worry that because I’m a man, I am going to sexually abuse someone”

“Is intercourse a violence or a violation?”

“Am I less of a man for waiting?”

9. If you’re gender-nonconforming like I am, celebrate that and serve as a positive role model to children and young people. I might, for example, tell a little boy I love his toy fire truck and say I loved playing with toy cars and trucks when I was his age. If he expresses surprise a girl would play with trucks, I’d tell him all toys are for both boys and girls, even if many people think only boys are allowed to play with trucks.

10. Question these stories being reported so uncritically by the media. Once you start digging below the surface and questioning things, you’ll be blown away by what you’ll discover.

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11. Stop rigidly stereotyping children, dammit! Give them all sorts of toys and costumes, stop making them play in different teams or stand in different lines, let them all participate in the same activities, don’t make a big deal out of it if Johnny has painted nails or Jane sports a buzz cut. So many of these alleged transkids are a direct result of adults refusing to let them play with certain toys or like certain colors.

13. Don’t let your minor child make irreversible, adult medical decisions, and find a legit (preferably older) psychiatrist instead of some SJW gender therapist!

14. Get acquainted with the gender-critical blogosphere! Some of the informative blogs I’ve learnt from include:

GenderTrender
Transgender Reality: What Trans People Are Really Saying Online
Stop Trans Chauvinism (a blog of reblogs)
Peak Trans Moment
4th Wave Now
Bureaucromancy
The dirt from Dirt
Retransition
Truth About Transition
Redress Alert
GenderCritical Reddit
Third Way Trans
Rejecting the Gender Cult
TERF Is a Slur
The Truth About Autogynephilia
Transgender Trend: Parents Questioning the Trans Narrative

Posted in Gender

The gender-industrial complex, Part XI (What really is gender?)

Warning: Any hateful, threatening, abusive comments will be deleted and the commenters blacklisted. Your negative, disrespectful energy says everything about you and nothing about me.

The social construct of gender is something we can blame on the infamous Dr. John Money. Until he coined the term in 1955, the word “gender” was overwhelmingly only used in grammar. In the 1970s, Dr. Money’s definition of gender became much more widespread, all thanks to the misrepresented findings of his “John/Joan Study.”

Dr. Money had a lot of issues from a deeply dysfunctional childhood, and these obsessions, dysfunctions, and bizarre ideas found their way into his adult work as a sexologist and psychologist. He began his research career by studying hermaphrodites (the then-correct term for intersexed people). In 1967, he struck gold for testing his theories about gender identity, at a trusting family’s expense.

In April 1966, 8-month-old Bruce Reimer lost his entire penis (bar a little vestigial stump of tissue) due to a botched circumcision. Instead of using a knife like normal, the surgeon decided to use an electrical needle. The organ was severely burnt and left hard as a rock. The urologist who was called couldn’t even insert a catheter in the urethra, and had to surgically put a tube in through the abdomen into the bladder. Over the next few days, the baby’s penis dried up and broke off in pieces, with the severed urethra like a piece of string.

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Bruce’s parents didn’t know what to do until they saw Dr. Money on television, with a transsexual whose sex change operation he’d performed. They were mesmerized at what could be done, and immediately contacted Dr. Money. Bruce received an orchiectomy (castration) and a rudimentary vaginoplasty at 22 months, was renamed Brenda, and began to be raised as a girl.

Dr. Money loved this case because Brenda had an identical twin, Brian. This was the perfect matched pair to test his theories about gender identity and how a normal boy could successfully become a girl, without even suspecting she used to be a he. The experiment not only failed miserably, but Dr. Money violated numerous ethical precepts (and doubtless laws as well). He showed them pornographic pictures, very graphic pictures of women giving birth, and dirty films, made them undress and inspect one another’s genitals, forced them to simulate sex acts on one another as he took pictures, all sorts of pedophilic, beyond-inappropriate behavior. He even got their parents to walk around naked in front of the kids, though they wisely drew the line at having sex in front of their children.

When the truth came out at age 14, Brenda immediately reverted back to her true sex and took the name David, after King David, whose warrior spirit he related to. I must admit, I was kind of thinking of this story when my character Boy Ryan is asked his name by bridal salon owner Mrs. Marsenko, and immediately thinks of David. When asked to explain later, he said it was because King David was a great warrior and got all the women.

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Thing is, David always knew he was male, even when he was living as Brenda. Even before he could understand what those feelings meant, he knew something wasn’t right, and that he was different. He wasn’t a natal female who always felt male. He simply returned to his true nature. This went far beyond merely being a very masculine girl. It wasn’t about which interests and behaviors stereotypically lined up with one sex vs. the other, but naturally gravitating towards maleness. Most people in our society tend to conform to gender norms, but this proved you don’t even need to be socialized as that sex to know who you are.

Dr. Money was still touting this study as a success as late as 1997, when the twins found out about it and went public to denounce this vile man and try to save other kids from the same fate. Sadly, they both committed suicide, all in huge part thanks to the trauma caused by Dr. Money. The charlatan himself died of old age and still retains a positive reputation among too many people.

Gender isn’t one and the same as biological sex, even though most people never feel much or any disconnect between the two. I’ve always known I’m female, hated how my parents wouldn’t let me have long hair when I was young, enjoy going to women’s-only events and davening behind a mechitza, love jewelry, the color purple, cute fluffy animals, and painting my nails, frequently wear dresses and skirts, and look forward to someday experiencing pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, covering my hair after marriage, and going to the mikvah.

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On the flip side, I also have a lot of interests and behaviors stereotypically associated with men in the modern West, but in some cultures, that would be considered more feminine behavior. There are places where men stay home as nurturing caretakers while women hunt and fight, just as there are places where both sexes take equal part in farming, hunting, fighting, and gathering.

As much as I believe in equality and egalitarianism, there are some things no amount of socialization one way or the other can change. Men tend to be physically stronger and taller than women, with more tendency towards aggression, due to testosterone, while women have more body fat and a calmer, more nurturing nature. Perhaps this is part of our race memories, as Jung theorized, not just because of typical socialization and the effects of hormones.

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We’re all made up of different aspects, along a spectrum. No one is 100% masculine or feminine, just as being 100% right- or left-handed tends to be a sign of neurological damage. Even someone as liberal as myself has some conservative views. Sexual orientation exists along a continuum too. Perhaps you only have relationships with men, but feel more emotionally attracted to women. Maybe you’re a man who’s bedded lots of women, but enjoy gay erotica. Your core identity shouldn’t feel insecure, since we ultimately know who we really are, even if society has tried to convince us we have to pretend to be someone else or choose between two boxes.

Posted in Gender

The gender-industrial complex, Part X (Peak trans moments)

Warning: Any hateful, threatening, abusive comments will be deleted and the commenters blacklisted. You cult-like zealots are the entire reason I was roused into writing this series and no longer staying silent in spite of my overwhelmingly liberal views.

“Peak trans” refers to that moment when a previous supporter realizes something’s really, really rotten in Denmark, and starts questioning more and more things being presented not only uncritically, but celebratorily. The person then starts backing away from the former support of trans politics, and often ends up horrified at everything which is uncovered.

Some of my peak trans moments:

1. “Packers” being sold for girls as young as four. Let’s just say they’re totally disproportionate to what a normal boy looks like! This company gets them from a sex toy distributor. Classy. When you were a kid, did you go around looking at boys’ crotches to see if there were a bulge, or care about whether there were a little bulge in your own pants?

2. Special underwear for boys to mash down the bulge. Again, see above question. What kind of perverts are kids these days if they seriously go around inspecting their classmates’ and friends’ crotches to see if there’s a bulge?

3. Being called “transphobic,” “cissexist,” “cis scum,” “truscum,” “transmisogynistic,” “heterocisnormative,” a TEFF, and a whole host of other newly-coined slurs for daring to question anything about the current trans narrative. I was told I was being transphobic for simply making an offhand comment about how some (very vile) woman in a news story looked like a man.

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4. The made-up term “cotton ceiling” to describe lesbians who dare not want to date and have sex with men in drag. If you’re a man, you’re not a lesbian, and no duh you’re having a hard time finding real lesbians who want to date someone with a penis!

5. The Tumblr-coined term “truscum” for people who dare insist on the long-accepted definition of transsexualism as being related to bodily dysphoria. The people who claim it’s possible to be trans without any dysphoria call themselves “tucute.”

6. Rewriting history to cast themselves as front and center, such as claiming the gay men who led the Stonewall riot were really trans.

7. Taking over a lot of LGB news outlets, organizations, and clubs to be all trans, all the time, and writing everyone else out of existence.

8. The transing of younger and younger kids! Minus all this inordinate media attention, we wouldn’t be seeing such an admitted explosion in the number of children now presenting to gender therapists and getting puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.

8. Trying to force themselves into women’s safe spaces, like locker rooms and bathrooms.

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9. The denial of biology, like saying a penis can be female too and that it’s just an opinion if a child is a boy or girl.

10. All the stereotypes out in full display. God forbid you just be a feminine man or masculine woman, instead of jumping on hormones and having surgeries! So many of these people become such caricatures of what they think a real man or woman is, like a dude-bro gym rat and a shopaholic princess bathed in pink.

11. An event to decorate cupcakes with vulvas was accused of being “transmisogynistic” and “violently transphobic” because it dared acknowledge women don’t have penises.

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12. Many women’s studies programs, university women’s organizations and lecture series, and women’s bookstores being taken over by transactivists.

13. Teens and twentysomethings who never had an issue with their identity suddenly deciding they’re trans based on the power of peer pressure, media suggestion, and binge-watching YouTube videos. Being gender-nonconforming is no reason to permanently alter your body!

14, Historic women’s-only colleges, like Smith and Barnard, being cowed into accepting biological men.

15. Last but not least, creepy fetishist Stefonknee Wolscht being hailed as some brave hero and martyr. Google this individual if you haven’t already seen his story. It’ll leave you shocked and disgusted.

Posted in Gender

The gender-industrial complex, Part IX (Invading women’s spaces)

Warning: Any hateful, threatening, abusive comments will be deleted and the commenters blacklisted. Go back to Tumblr, YouTube, and Reddit if you want an echo chamber and circle-jerk.

I first encountered a co-ed bathroom in 2000, during my UMass-Amherst orientation, and it really creeped me out. I didn’t want to be in that bathroom (which of course included showers, being a university dorm) when there were men there. I certainly don’t believe all men are rapists and perverts, but rather that I just don’t feel comfortable being in the same personal space as men. I’ve sometimes used a single-room male bathroom when the women’s room was in use and it was an emergency, but I’ve never gone into a multi-stall men’s room that I can remember.

These “bathroom bills” being denounced as so “transphobic” and “transmisogynistic” are actually very sensible, and about protecting women’s safe spaces. Women’s bathrooms and locker rooms are also traditionally recognized as safe spaces for children of both sexes. I certainly don’t have a problem with a little boy going with his mother or older sister into the women’s locker room or bathroom. It’s sure safer than making him go to the men’s room by himself.

Here’s a radical solution: Use family bathrooms or other co-ed options! Gender might be a social construct, but that doesn’t mean most women and men are socialized the same. I can’t deny most men are more visually stimulated than women.

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There are still far too many rapes in this world, and women have been socialized to be wary of being alone with a strange man or a guy they don’t know very well. Women are taught to be careful walking alone at night, even if it’s just in a parking garage. I’ve always changed in private or by maneuvering clothes on and off under other clothes, even when it’s only other women and girls; if I were forced to share private space with a man, I’d feel extremely unsafe and threatened. When I worked as a camp counselor, I would’ve been even angrier if some grown man had walked around naked in front of my dear little campers in the JCC locker room!

Many of the men trying to get access to women’s bathrooms are autogynephiles, and have been exposed as having criminal pasts (including as sex offenders). Some of them even start demanding access as soon as they declare themselves trans, like “Lila” Perry. I completely side with the girls who knew him as male for 17 years. This guy gives off such a creepy, perverted vibe, not least in the picture where his sex organs are clearly on display under his skirt.

These men also shut down Michfest, a 40-year-old women’s music festival, and gained entry into historic women’s schools, battered women’s shelters, women’s homeless shelters, women’s Olympic sports, and women’s prisons. Aren’t there enough co-ed and men’s-only spaces and places in the world? Must they take over the relative few women’s-only spaces? Even Girl Scouts now allows biological boys to join.

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I would never, ever, ever try to barge into a special space meant only for members of a group I don’t belong to, like lesbians, traditional-aged university students, Catholics, African-Americans, or senior citizens.

While I feel comfortable at both Conservative and Orthodox services, I’ve really grown to prefer davening behind a mechitza, with only other women. There’s just such a special energy and dynamic which comes from a women’s-only space, this secret little world the men don’t have access to. I’d feel really violated if a man were in the women’s section. It would ruin my davening. The laws of yichud also say an unrelated woman and man can’t be alone in an enclosed space without a kosher chaperone.

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Some of these zealots have cowed people into replacing the word “woman” with “person” when talking about pregnancy and birth. Biological reality hurts their feelings.

I’m not uniformly opposed to being alone with a man, in spite of trying to follow the laws of yichud the best I can. My navel was pierced by a man, with the door closed, and I’ve come to live with my roommate frequently bringing her boyfriend over. But that’s a controlled, specific setting. It’s not a private, personal setting meant only for women and small children.

Posted in Gender

The gender-industrial complex, Part VIII (Denying biological reality)

Warning: Any hateful, threatening, abusive comments will be deleted and the commenters blacklisted. This is a safe space for people to have a healthy, respectful dialogue about a current issue, not a place where bullies are welcome.

I’ve grown tremendously as a skeptic over the last few years (a lowercase skeptic, not one of those rigid uppercase Skeptics). Part of that skepticism now includes being highly questioning of the huge, overnight explosion of alleged transsexuals, particularly children. I absolutely believe there’s a legitimate, TINY minority of transsexuals, for whom medical and surgical transition is therapeutic and lifesaving. However, such diagnoses used to be made only after years of psychiatric counseling, not because “Johnny likes pink and only plays with dolls instead of action figures” or “I spent a couple of weeks watching YouTube videos after I started college, and now I’m convinced I’m trans!”

The transactivist zealots deny biological reality. For just one example, check out this story, “Mom worried her 7-year-old ‘son’ will be scarred for life if not taught that some mommies make sperm.” I’m completely gobsmacked! Oh noes, a little girl you’ve convinced yourself has to be male will be so traumatized if you tell her a penis is a male-only organ and that only women have uteri! The original article being discussed is full of such ridiculous lines like:

“Because the truth is, some boys do have uta-whatevers. And some girls have penises.”

“Sometimes mommies make sperm and sometimes daddies make eggs.”

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WTF! In what universe are any of those things true? I’ve even heard someone claiming that famous line in Kindergarten Cop is no longer true, since “medical science has evolved.” To the point where women routinely have penises and men have female organs? No matter how deep your delusion is, biological reality can’t be denied. I love how this little girl doesn’t even know how babies are made, yet has enough life experience and knowledge about herself as to know she’s really a boy.

All these people act like it’s a done deal, in spite of the claim that puberty blockers are only to make sure the kid wants to transition. None of them even think about the child changing his or her mind. God forbid we return to the normal model we had just 5–10 years ago, letting kids be kids instead of forcing them into rigid boxes based on childish phases and innocent prattles. Thanks to neuroplasticity, children are highly impressionable. When everyone around them feeds this delusion, of course they’ll never think to question this erroneous belief.

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The transactivist zealots claim it’s biological essentialism to define people by their genitals, but that’s not what it is at all. By saying genitals make you a man or woman, we’re not reducing people to walking sex organs. We’re just saying those are the physical markers distinguishing the sexes. If we thought people were nothing more than sex organs and their associated functions, we wouldn’t accept post-menopausal women, the infertile, women who’ve had mastectomies due to cancer, men who’ve lost their genitals to accidents, or the childfree by choice.

Humans are a sexually dimorphic species, with the rare exception of intersexed people. Modern recommendations are to assign a sex to an intersexed child but not perform surgery unless the person makes that decision on his or her own. Some may decide they feel comfortable with both types of organs, while others always strongly identity with one sex and elect to have the organs of the other sex surgically removed. You also don’t surgically alter a baby or young child who suffers an extreme accident or has a condition like micropenis. Nowadays, you’d never have a tragic case like David Reimer’s (to be discussed more in Part XI).

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And speaking of “assigning” sex, that’s the only case where such terminology is correct. People are BORN one sex or the other. There’s no “assigning” or “designating” going on. It’s even more ridiculous to say you’re “coercively assigned” a sex. Biological sex is reality, not mere suggestion or opinion. Just check out this huge load of bollocks, seriously claiming it’s an act of cruel violence for a doctor to announce if a baby is a boy or a girl. I’m a huge fan of “The Story of an X,” the classic Seventies story about a gender-neutral child, but X’s parents still knew what sex their child really was!

If you’re a man, you have a penis and testicles. If you’re a woman, you have a vagina and vulva. Those organs can only belong to one sex. There’s no such thing as a “female penis,” and your female genitalia don’t constitute a penis. No man has a vagina, and it’s impossible for a lesbian to either have a penis or want to date someone with a penis. As a hetero woman, I’d be really upset to discover a “boyfriend” had deceived me about “his” true sex.

You weren’t “always a girl” if you were born a boy. People didn’t just “think” you were a girl just because you’re an FTM. It’s particularly rich to claim such fantasies if you did things only one sex can do, like fathering children, giving birth, serving in combat, attending a single-sex school, or belonging to Boy Scouts.