Why trans rights are NOT the new gay rights.

“LGBT” now rolls off the tongue. Trans rights and gay rights are seen as intimately linked, both stemming from the same societal hang-ups and therefore mutually interested in teaming up with each other. Outlets which focused on news relating to gay rights, such as pink news, now also focus on trans-related issues and have a trans section on their website. Societal acceptance and progression with regards to gay rights are now seen to be things which must be brought to trans individuals, and that to stand in the way of this, is to be of the same ilk as those raving homophobes from history – specifically, the wrong side of history.

The notion is being pushed by a few prominent individuals. Our nearly-Prime-Minister Ed Miliband has said that the recent media coverage of trans politics is like the moral panic we saw in the 80’s over gay rights. Prominent trans rights activist and journalist Paris Lees agrees and now Owen Jones has brought the idea to his guardian column.

He says: “gay people were sexual predators; a “gay lobby” was brainwashing children; being gay was a mental illness, or just a phase; and gay rights was political correctness gone mad. Replace “gay” with “trans”, and that’s the state of the British press in 2017.”

This is a nice, useful, compacted list of elements which I’ll accept on the face of it, look pretty similar across the fights for gay rights and trans rights. I’ll take them in turn.

Gay people were sexual predators: The big big biiiig significant difference between calling gay people predators and calling trans-identifying males predators is that one is true a lot of the time and one is not. It is not being trans which greatly increases the likelihood you’re a predator, but that you are male-bodied. I am not aware of any evidence that gay people commit violent and sexual crime at significantly higher rates than straight people, and would find the claim offensive and homophobic. But the stats behind males committing violent and sexual crimes are stark. Males are responsible for 81% of violent crime, 89% of violent crime against children aged 10-15, 98% of rapes of women and also 93% of the rapes of men to top it off. Crucially, it’s not about identifying as a man, it’s about having a male body (you know, a dick). Regardless of how they identify, male-bodied people demonstrate the same – elevated – rates of violence. We are not claiming that all trans people are predators, we’re claiming that males have a high propensity to be and that they can’t identify out of their oppressive position in the gender heirarchy. Women being protective of themselves in the face of men is something we should not have to apologise for, and it’s well worth remembering that if you believe women’s self-guarding is doing harm to anyone then you are prioritising an ideology which revolves around male feelings, over women’s safety, and are misogynistic to see women’s safety as so easily dispensed.

As for harmless and well-meaning trans men and women, their safety is indeed a concern and a new issue to navigate. But it cannot come at the expense of women’s safety and it also isn’t clear why it’s on women to fight the battle of having public places to pee, again, and for someone else.

A “gay lobby” was brainwashing children: Out of fear and ignorance, any attempt to comfort, protect and make visible gay people was disregarded as ‘brainwashing’. The possibility of being gay and loved should have been open to children, and then they should have been allowed to become whoever they are.

So how are we presently going about leaving the option of being trans open to children? And then allowing them to become whoever they are to become? This is a tricky one. This is where concerns for three types of people start to merge; trans people, gay people and gender non-conforming people. Here is a super important collection of research which really sets apart the trans movement from the gay rights movement: the majority of young people who identify as transgender will one day stop, and the majority also turn out to be gay. In other words, there are a lot of gay people and people who were just gender non-conforming getting caught up in the trans movement. Surely, as gender non-conforming people and gay people break the mold in a way that makes ignorant people uncomfortable, they deserve protection and space to grow into their natural selves, rather than facing a life dependent on injections, pills and surgery?

The DSM criteria for gender identity disorder has tried to address this mix-up between being trans and being gender non-conforming and reclassified GID as ‘gender dysphoria’ in DSM-5, but still lists “a powerful assurance of having the characteristic feelings and responses of the other gender”, and “a profound need for society to treat them as another gender” as criteria for being diagnosed with the disorder. Only in a society already steeped in gendered stereotypes and expectations could these sentences make sense. Boys liking pink glitter and girls liking to climb trees should never put them in danger of being taken to doctors and facing the path of irreversible physiological transitioning of their pre-pubescent bodies. And yet, in many cases it is stereotypical behaviours associated with the other sex that parents give as examples of ‘knowing’ their child was trans. Gay people had not been demanding any kind of serious surgical intervention – before they’ve even reached an age we assign consent to choose what’s for tea – to give themselves features they’ve deemed themselves as meant to be having, because they perceive that demographic to have them. Perhaps surgery on vocal chords for a stereotypical gay voice? Perhaps growth modifications to be femme or butch? Perhaps their son had been a coward in school, so they knew he was gay? The absurd offensiveness is suddenly clear when it’s not about women.

It’s hard to be gender non-conforming and to come out as gay. These people are vulnerable, and the figures show that they are being disproportionately drawn to trans identities. We’re in a world now where these people are being told that being trans, along with all the surgical risks and medical dependency that brings, will solve all their issues relating to their self-conception, their trauma, their young need for validation, and their pesky insistence on wearing the wrong types of clothes and fancying the wrong people. Teachers, doctors and parents feel bullied into pushing an ideology they don’t feel, in their scientific knowledge and knowledge of their children, to be the answer. Witch-hunts happen every day because someone said “male-to-female“. Young people have healthy body parts removed. Teens are advised how to manipulate their parents. Yes, we are concerned about some exploitation going on.

Being gay was a mental illness, or just a phase: Once again, the difference between saying that being gay is a phase and that being trans is a phase, is that in the first instance it’s false and in the second instance it’s true for the majority of young people.

For the trans identifying individuals with sex dysphoria: Thinking that something is a mental illness isn’t offensive and derogatory in itself. The people who called being gay a mental illness, are the people who thought being mentally ill was wrong. Why else were they saying it? No-one was saying “it’s a mental illness, ergo it’s okay!”. But today, we have a more progressive view of mental health. Just because something’s gone wrong and is causing you a lot of suffering, it’s not the end of the world and you are not fundamentally and morally wrong. There are treatments and ways to cope and lessons to learn.

A nice commonly used and intuitive definition of mental illness, in the chaos that is philosophy of the subject, is one by Wakefield: Something is a mental illness if both a) there has been a dysfunction of a mechanism, and b) it causes harm and suffering to the individual – not exclusively from pure societal prejudice, but also rooted in the disorder. Being gay should not have been classed as a mental illness because there is no dysfunction, and the suffering that gay people endured was exclusively due to prejudice and ignorance of powerful people around them.

Sex dysphoric people, arguably have a dysfunction. How else you can swallow the philosophical conundrum of how you can be born in a ‘wrong’ body and require man-made pills, injections, hormones and surgery for the rest of your life in order to be your ‘authentic’ self, is lost on me. Remember, trans groups want no gatekeeping at all on access to hormones. Gay people did not require a jab every month to continue being their natural gay selves. Gay people would have not suffered one iota if they hadn’t been in a homophobic world, but crucially, the male who does not feel his penis should be there or the woman who feels her breasts are sickeningly disgusting would still suffer, whatever utopian world they were living in. Society plays its part in teaching women to hate their bodies, but there is dysfunction involved in having a breakdown over periods and wanting to actually remove these healthy body parts. The complexity of the harm inflicted between sex dysphoria at a young age and the oppressive forces of gender only highlight that treating young people to be comfortable with themselves and learn how to acknowledge, fight and cope with the violent suffering inflicted on them by the institution of gender is the more efficient and parsimonious way to go.

For the trans identifying individuals without sex dysphoria: Some trans-identifying people feel that their bodies are fine, have no sex dysphoria and want to walk around with beards and deep voices and still be a ‘she’. The effects of this is that we are losing either a) perfectly good pronouns we all understand which exist to describe the world accurately, or b) a gender non-conforming individual who would gloriously challenge gender stereotypes.

People suffering with sex dysphoria deserve support, a treatment plan and a societal analysis to explain their pain. A diagnosis would help these things. They’re mentally ill and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Gay rights was political correctness gone mad: Gay people, as far as I understand, wanted some pretty bog standard rights and freedoms. I think they wanted to be able to love who they wanted, live with who they wanted, to express themselves without violence or ridicule and not have their life opportunities negatively affected by their sexual orientation. What do trans people want?

Trans people want biological sex to be a completely bogus concept. They want ‘he’ and ‘she’ to mean anything at all. They want made up words like ‘xe/xir’ to be their own special pronouns. They want lesbians to be able to have penises. For sexual orientations to have nothing to do with male and female bodies. They want medical interventions such as synthetic hormones which have not been widely available long enough for long-term consequences of their use to be studied, to be freely and widely available to everyone – including young children. They want the word ‘gender’, which in every intellectual sphere for decades meant “an oppressive hierarchical structure forced onto people into society, with effects dependent on their biological sex”, to mean “picking a point on a spectrum of feelings”.

What are the consequences? Well, vile practices like ‘FGM’ become ‘transphobic’, because the concept of ‘female’ is meaningless, there is no one thing that all the people with clitorises who endure or are at risk of FGM have in common. Without these concepts, we cannot situate the practice as part of patriarchy, a practice that men use to control women and their reproductive rights. Lesbians are expected to be completely comfortable with suddenly finding a penis on an sexual partner. (This applies equally to gay men finding a vagina, but for some reason I notice the trans movement is far less concerned with protecting trans-identifying females and asking sacrifices of men). We have to ask everyone’s pronouns, all the time. Men who have grown up seeing female bodies – unlike theirs – be treated like sex toys and objectified suddenly decide they’ve experienced exactly the same misogyny and sexism as the women who actually have those bodies. Socialisation means nothing. We can’t look at the sea of male faces which make up politics, or CEOs, or charity committees and be dismayed that they’re clearly not prioritising women’s voices in their space, because some of them they might ‘identify’ as women, or non-binary, or tri-gender. You can’t ever know your own sexual orientation because you can’t tell, just by looking, what gender the person you’re eyeing up across the dancefloor is. You might like his broad shoulders but it turns out, if he identifies as anything other than a man (and there’s a lot of alternatives), you’re not straight anymore. Young people who are statistically proven to be likely to have lived happy lives as gay people if they’d been supported to do so, undergo surgery and take hormones – and in extreme cases, can no longer have children.

Gay people are still dealing with bakers who don’t want to bake them cakes.

Look at the demographics being disfigured and silenced out of the trans movement. Gay people and gender non-conforming people who disrupt norms and are still fiercely proud and at peace with themselves. Women who refuse to placate men and are stubborn in their suspicion of them – something harmless men should be completely unbothered by. People who believe in gender as an oppressive heirarchy forced onto us, and who are competent and confident enough to name the male culprits, point out the targeting of females and be angry enough to do something about it.

As a final note, I am not gay and I am not particularly gender non-conforming (I reject make-up and skirts though, woo! Just doing my bit). I’d recommend reading some of the responses to Owen by gay people and trans people, because peoples orientations don’t necessarily line up neatly with where we’re told their views are supposed to lie.  A proper recognition of the constant and overwhelming erosive force of gender, sexism, misogyny and homophobia might bring down some of the trans dogma and be of great protective help to trans identifying individuals.

12 thoughts on “Why trans rights are NOT the new gay rights.

  1. “They want ‘he’ and ‘she’ to mean anything at all.” In literally the same way, right down to exact explanations, to how gay and pro-gay people wanted “husband”, “wife”, “father”, “mother” to be anything at all. You conveniently excluded that part when you described what gay people wanted.

    If a child can have two fathers or two mothers, if a husband can have a husband, then an adult with a beard can be a she. We either use established biological definitions or we go with what the Obergefell decision promulgated: a right to choice in intimate identity and beliefs.

    I would also as you why you *want* “he” and “she” to have biological meanings. Would it make sense to have separate pronouns for blondes and gingers? For white-skinned and yellow-skinned people? If not, then why for males and females? It’s another accident of biology. Yes, it matters in reproduction, but most of the time we use pronouns we are not talking about reproduction.

    Some radfems claim that the man/woman biological definitions are important to define oppressor and oppressed class. Without going into details on the validity of this claim, it is absurd at least for pronouns, because even the hardcore Stalinists don’t use separate pronouns for bourgeoisie and proletariat!

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    • Hi, thanks for your comments.

      Gay people did not want ‘husband’, ‘mother’ etc to mean anything at all – they just wanted it to be acceptable to have different combinations of them – two wives married or having two fathers. Gay people didn’t want to completely tear apart the very definition of “husband” to mean pretty much potentially any biological type of person at all.

      “If a child can have two fathers or two mothers, if a husband can have a husband, then an adult with a beard can be a she.” This sentence just completely boggles my mind. I’m sorry but I have no idea where you’re coming from and what the fundamental link is between allowing husbands to have a husbands and then allowing adults with beards to be a she. I assume you’re meaning, males to be called ‘she’, though of course there are females who grow beards also…
      We can have biological definitions AND the Obergefell decision. Gay people don’t identify as gay, they just are gay. They sleep with and marry and fancy and spend their lives with people of the same sex. That’s what the word means. People don’t identify as females. They have female sexual characteristics. Gay people having the right to marry and to just basically be gay is not the same as the right to identify as whatever you want.

      I want ‘he’ and ‘she’ to have biological meanings so that we can contextualise violence against women in the structure of sexed oppression – males oppressing females. The people who are targeted are females; individuals with female sex characteristics get cat called and raped, on the basis of those sex characteristics, because no one checks their gender identity before targeting them. And it’s the individuals with penises which do the targeting. Like I’ve said in my post, the contextualising of FGM is a perfect example of this. Without gender or sex, we can’t say that FGM is a way that men control and oppress women.

      Well, pronouns are obviously meant to convey gender, and hair colour and skin colour are not genders. But if we use pronoun to mean, just, referring to something, then there kind of ARE pronouns for ginger people, blonde people, white people etc… it’s those exact phrases, the pronoun for ginger people is ginger people. The analogy would be if a blonde person started saying “but I IDENTIFY as having red hair”, and call themselves ginger and demand everyone else call them ginger, even though they’re clearly blonde and we have the word “blonde” to describe exactly the phenomenon of that yellow hair which we all agreed on. Without the agreement, it means nothing. What would “I am blonde” mean if it didn’t refer to yellow hair? It tells you literally nothing at all about that persons hair colour if it is referring to any hair colour you identify as having.

      But they kind of DID have pronouns – ‘the bourgeoisie’ and the ‘proletariat’ class! This revolution had a focus on class and affluence – the rich and the poor, and they NEEDED those terms for their political analysis to MAKE SENSE. What if members of the bourgeoisie just identified as being part of the proletariat? What if the statement “I am part of the proletariat” told you NOTHING at all about their material circumstances, how rich they were, how powerful they were? Where they’re focusing on oppression based on class, and need those terms to describe reality and their analysis to make sense, radical feminism is focusing on oppression on the basis on sex and need the terms female and male to describe reality and make sense.

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      • ‘The bourgeoisie’ and ‘the proletariat’ seem to make an excellent example that we can both work on, so I’ll run with that. Yes, objective definitions of these classes is important when discussing Marxist analysis. However, most of the time people talk or write they are not discussing Marxist analysis. And when referring to a person outside of the context of Marxist analysis, people use pronouns that do not reveal one’s membership of the bourgeoisie or the proletariat.

        There were societies where, indeed, one’s class membership was a pervasive characteristic that affected all of your interaction with society. You had to provide your class descent “at every corner”. These were places like Stalin’s USSR and Mao’s China, societies that we now generally define as totalitarian.

        And now back to sex and gender. I do not agree with radical feminist analysis but it exists, and people have a right to express it. And yes, when talking or writing about radical feminist analysis of society, it is important to use biological terms, including pronouns.

        But most of the time, when people talk or write, they do not discuss radical feminist analysis. And if you cite radical feminist analysis to force people to accept biologically correct pronouns and other words for themselves when they do not want them *in daily life*, not at a radfem gathering, I would say you are stepping from neo-Marxism to neo-Stalinism.

        (I would see some people on the other side as making the same mistake when they demand that radfem women accept that they are “cis”. While “cis” is a useful word for political analysis, I am against imposing the needs of political analysis onto people, and this applies even to theories I agree with).

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      • >> “If a child can have two fathers or two mothers, if a husband can have a husband, then an adult with a beard can be a she.” This sentence just completely boggles my mind. I’m sorry but I have no idea where you’re coming from and what the fundamental link is between allowing husbands to have a husbands and then allowing adults with beards to be a she.

        All right, I will expand this.

        In traditional use, not only “man” and “woman”, but “marriage”, “father”, “mother” are words strongly linked to reproduction. Marriage is a union of people to produce heirs and ensure stable inheritance, originally; it later got to encompass ensuring a stable environment for raising the children before they can inherit. Mother is the woman who gave birth; there is a separate word “step-mother” for a woman who replaces the woman who gave birth. Father is the man who has sired or is, for one reason or another, presumed to have sired the child; we’re talking traditional use, so no genetic analysis available. “Parent” is mother or father or, sometimes, stepmother or stepfather. “Two fathers” or “two mothers” for a child was generally nonsense as the terms were linked to the way the child came to life.

        All of these terms were primarily biological, though sometimes the link of fatherhood to biology was merely notional – but never of motherhood.

        Then, gradually, the definitions of the words shifted. The traditional use I described was pretty true up to, I think, early Victorian times, but it was far from intact before gay rights came along. There were many factors that gradually eroded the biological meaning of parenthood and marriage. Adoption became a more defined thing. Then marriage primarily for love, which got to encompass people not able (and, later, even people not willing) to produce children. Then divorce. A few other things too. This evolutionary process was concluded with same-sex marriage and same-sex parenthood, which mostly severed the residual link between marriage, parenthood, and biological reproduction.

        But the terms “man” and “woman” themselves, also being originally biological, are not exempt from this general shift. The very same trend, the very same force, that works on the set of words above works on these words too.

        Yes, radical feminist analysis sees these things differently. For all I know it sees marriage itself as oppressive (so whatever sexes can take part does not even make a difference), fatherhood as extraneous; I have seen very different views on motherhood within radical feminism, from “extraneous and imposed” to “essential”. (The gender-neutral “parent” seems to make no sense from a radical feminist perspective as interactions of power, including the parent-child relationship, are inherently sexed in its view, right?) But it sees “man” and “woman” as essential antagonistic classes.

        But most of society does not measure itself by radical feminist analysis and. when biological terms get to shift, they all get to shift.

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      • “We can have biological definitions AND the Obergefell decision. Gay people don’t identify as gay, they just are gay. They sleep with and marry and fancy and spend their lives with people of the same sex. That’s what the word means. People don’t identify as females. They have female sexual characteristics. Gay people having the right to marry and to just basically be gay is not the same as the right to identify as whatever you want.”

        The theory of an innate fixed sexual orientation is indeed widespread. But without debating it on its merits, I can simply state that Obergefell is not based on the theory. And I think it is right because the theory is seriously debated, and fluidity is at the very least a proposal known in the mainstream; a legal rule intended to stand for centuries should ideally not be based on matters of ongoing debate.

        It does not acknowledge that some people “are gay”; it has no “gay” and more importantly no “are”. It is based instead on “right to choice of intimate identity and beliefs”. This does not mean, of course, that one “chooses orientation”; rather that one chooses to identify with one’s desires and establish a particular relationship in line with them.

        And specifically because Obergefell is based on the notion of choice of identity, not on the notion of innate orientation, it can not be limited to marriage and not affect gender identity.

        (An aside that might be necessary. I know the notion of fluidity can be abused for “reparative therapy” and while supporting fluidity I have my own analysis of why “reparative therapy” is bound to fail and to be unethical. Very briefly, it was bound to fail because a positive experience can only expand and never contract one’s options, while a negative experience is simply not therapy by any definition, as it imparts trauma, not healing. Therefore there can never be a real therapy that would stop homosexual desire and make one straight. Some kind of therapy aimed at a bi/pansexual outcome *might* succeed sometimes, but any theoretically possible method will inevitably succeed *much more* with people identifying as straight, as many of them identify as straight because of social pressure. The “reparative therapy” crowd dreads this result and so will never be able to develop this therapy even if it is possible as such…

        But of course this analysis is sex-neutral so far, which is just not something a radical feminist can agree with, ever. So let me modify it. What I wrote above applies to treatment of bio males, all of whom are defined by that crowd as men; in that treatment they are primarily concerned with eradication of “wrong” desires. Their treatment of bio females, whom they define as women, will fail for a different reason. They might not be so worried about a woman having desires for another woman, they just want her to acquire desire for a man. But their view of a woman’s relationship with, and so desire for, a man is toxic for a large number of women. Even supposing the most favourable hypothesis for them, that there are some women who identify as lesbians because of trauma, these women would not be helped by that crowd. The reason: what they want for that woman, what they give that woman, can only traumatize her further, and therefore will not genuinely expand her options even if that were in theory possible).

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      • I could not regret engaging with you more. Your pretentious and patronising writing is deeply unpleasant to have to read. You turn your surface level understanding of the issue into wacky and illogical ‘arguments’. Thanks for demonstrating how men behave at the table of feminism. Bye

        Liked by 3 people

  2. ” They want the word ‘gender’, which in every intellectual sphere for decades meant “an oppressive hierarchical structure forced onto people into society, with effects dependent on their biological sex”, to mean “picking a point on a spectrum of feelings”.”

    No, it possibly did mean that within radical feminism specifically, but it never meant that “in every intellectual sphere” because, even before Judith Butler, the term was widely used by psychoanalysts and sexologists at the same time as radical feminism developed. In just one example, I am not saying John Money was great, but he certainly did use “gender” and certainly not as an oppressive hierarchy.

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    • Yes, I think John Money was one of the first ones to modify the meaning of gender in this way, and I believe that was a mistake, an invalid move which is causing a lot of harm. It’s undeniable that a change in the meaning of the word gender is causing confusion. I see transactivists quote Simone De Beauvoir that “one is not born, but becomes a woman”, thinking that this supports their notions of gender identity and anyone being allowed to become woman/female. But what she in fact meant was that we become women through the institution of gender – which teaches women to be quiet, meek, sexy, held back. It makes perfect sense to have a word – sex – to describe the biological realities of people, and ‘gender’ to describe how society treats and expects differently of these different biological types of people to behave. Conflating the two can imply that males and females by their nature display these stereotypes, of men being strong and intelligent and women being weak, rather than it being forced onto them.

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      • I do not see how chronology can support an assertion that the radical feminist readng of gender, as an oppressive hierarchy, was there first and John Money “modified” it. I think the chronology tells a different story.

        Once the idea of using “gender” not just in grammar but as some ind of sex-linked behaviour/personal/social thing came into view, sometime either shortly before or shortly after WWII, there were two parallel trends of development. One saw it as primarily personal difference and was concerned with nature vs. nurture in development of that difference; I would call it neo-Ferudian, and a famous representative is John Money. Another saw is as primarily socially imposed difference, constituting oppression primarily of women. I would call it neo-Marxist; a famous representative is Andrea Dworkin. There never was a time when, in “any intellectual sphere”, the Dworkin version was the only version.

        Then along came Judith Butler and attempted to synthesize both the neo-Marxist and neo-Freudian versions in a postmodernist/poststructuralist framework. This synthesis is now mainstream, but you certainly have the right to disagree with it and support the original neo-Marxist analysis. I just would posit that your specific claim that your version was ever the *only* understanding of gender is counterfactual, when applied to “intellectual sphere” in general.

        (If you wrote “in any feminist circles” instead of “intellectual”, I’d say you have a point. Before Butler, the neo-Freudian view was very disconnected from feminism, while the neo-Marxist view was at the core of a major thread of feminism).

        To the best of my knowledge, my statementds above are merely factual. What follows is my own analysis which you probably won’t accept, but it should not affect the facts above.

        So my own view is within the Butler-ian mainstream but strongly tinted with a personalist/individualist streak. I would see gender as both difference (when applied primarily to persons) as oppression (when applied primarily to society). And I would define the oppression as coercion to certain gendered difference. I would furthermore concede that such coercion oppresses biological females more than biological males in modern society.

        Therefore I would abolish coercion, not “gender” as such, and I would see abolition of coercion as achieving, in the long-term ideal, principally the same aim as “abolition of gender” in its radical feminist reading. An important difference, however, is that I defined “gendered difference” as literally ALL behavioural norms that are socially linked to sex, while radical feminists limit their definition to the norms that are oppressive.

        So for me, *any* requirement to behave differently depending on sex is gendered difference (or “gender”), and therefore coercion to this end should ultimately be abolished. This, again ultimately, includes any sex segregation and, of course, any gendered identification.

        I do realize that ideals do not define present reality. There are cases (like sports or changing rooms) where abolishing gendered difference is fraught with significant difficulty and cannot “just be done”. But is is *still gender*, by definition, because it is (a) behaviour and (b) socially linked to sex.

        There are other cases, like dress codes or pronouns, where abolishing gendered difference impacts *nothing*, except it makes certain political speech slightly harder. So I say, do it. I would, of course, limit “do it” to areas that are normally seen as regulated (like employment), not as realms of personal freedom (like debate).

        In my view, the claim to want to “abolish gender” while keeping certain gendered differences is disingenious, or else is based on a very peculiar definition of “gender” which was never mainstream.

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  3. Another hugely important difference is that gay men want to have sex with gay men. The more men came out as gay and entered the community, the larger the pool of sexual/romantic partners. Likewise for lesbians. Coming out as homosexual meant sexual liberation in the literal sense. In a broader sense, homosexuals created their own gay and lesbian communities, which absorbed as much energy as demanding change from society.

    But transpeople don’t want to have sex with each other, for the most part. They prefer to have sex with non trans. Hence the huge pressure that transwomen put on lesbians to have sex with them. Trans people put all their energy into being recognised by society, and little on building separate trans communities.

    Hence transing is a recipe for sexual frustration. This I suspect exacerbates the more militant transactivism.

    Parents who trans their children never admit to themselves–and never warn their children–that chemotherapy drugs (aka puberty blockers), cross-sex hormones, and surgical mutilation will leave them with a tiny pool of potential sexual/romantic partners. Thus Jazz Jennings is surprised that boys aren’t dating him.

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    • The “huge pressure on lesbians” is a couple of activists that go way too extreme in politicizing everything personal. It it not even their invention. Radfems put a lot of energy into shaming women who like femininity in a sexual way and especially on those who like to play a more submissive role, calling their desires somehow contrary to The Right Ideology. Then the intersectional bunch jumped on the train, being critical of preferences in things like skin colour. The few, very few, trans activists like Riley Dennis who “pressure lesbians” have caught the idea from wither the radfems or the intersectionals. In fact, until Riley, this trend was VERY hard to find among actual trans activists, with anti-trans propaganda signal-boosting a very obscure seminar that seven people attended (so-called “cotton ceiling”). Riley changed it, yes, but the view is still very much a minority view.

      Most trans activists recognize that people’s sexual preference is in their own personal realm and not to be politicized.

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