In the eyes of radical transgender activists, women can no longer declare themselves women, and everyone needs to accept that men who say they are women are women, but it’s hard to imagine anyone truly believes this, anymore than the demonstrators in 1984 believed Big Brother had increased their chocolate rations.
“It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be REDUCED to twenty grammes a week. Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours? Yes, they swallowed it.” Few sequences in literature so perfectly capture the dynamic of government control as these simple sentences from George Orwell’s classic and prescient 1984, but the underlying meaning is more subtle than it appears at first glance. The scene is told from the point of view of the main character, Winston Smith, who assumes he knows and understands the reality that Big Brother has reduced the ration rather than raising it. When he asked was “it possible they could swallow it, after only twenty four hours,” he is implying that the demonstrators were so brainwashed, they are incapable of understanding the truth, allowing Big Brother to dictate what is true and what is false, and change it to suit the needs of the party. In this view, Winston is alone in being able to remember and understand the real sequence of events, but Orwell provides no reason to believe he is correct in this assumption. Unless everyone else on the planet has lost the basic human faculty of episode memory and maintaining a sequence of events in their minds, there must be some other reason these citizens are demonstrating on behalf of Big Brother and embracing an obvious lie. This reason can only be that the demonstrators are aware that Big Brother is lying, but accept it to show their fealty to the state and the Party, and their obeisance to the dictates of the government. We see additional evidence of this phenomenon in another sequence, when “the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it.” This, of course, is impossible to believe. You can count the numbers out on your fingers and determine the Party’s statement is false, nor can we think that people would actually begin performing math this way, but that is not the point: The point is to say you believe it to remain in good standing with the Party. What you actually believe is irrelevant, so long as you never speak it aloud in public and persecute anyone who disagrees with the Party line.
In Orwell’s day there was nothing resembling the modern transgender movement, but it is equally impossible to believe we are not seeing the same dynamic in action right now, when the mere mention that a biological woman is distinct from a biological man, as humans believed for thousands upon thousand of years, is met with ridicule and claims that only hatred could drive such an outdated opinion. Last week, progressive journalist and co-host of the Young Turks YouTube show, Ana Kasparian, posted the obvious on Twitter. “I’m a woman. Please don’t ever refer to me as a person with a uterus, birthing person, or a person who menstruates. How do people not realize how degrading this is? You can support the transgender community without doing this shit.” This statement would not have been controversial less than a decade ago, akin to commenting on the color of your hair, eyes, weight, or any other self-evident aspect of your biology. Ms. Kasparian is indeed a woman, and women in those halcyon days of feminism circa 2010 had a right to proclaim the independence of their gender, as in the old phrase “I am woman, hear me roar.” Back then, it would have been considered the modern day equivalent of alchemy (or transubstantiation as I have previously suggested) to believe that a man can magically be transformed into a woman in an absolute sense, any more than lead could be transformed into gold. Instead, we would have accepted that a man can believe they are a woman or vice versa, but that does not make them objectively a woman, no different in any aspect. To liken large issues to small, one might change the color of their hair, but the roots still grow in the same shade you were born with. We can also understand that people who feel this way deserve to have their beliefs and identities respected, while acknowledging that belief does not make something so and there remain differences with their biological counterparts that can never be resolved. This should not be a controversial position. It is indeed what genetics and biology demand, what we might call science as settled as any in human history, similar to attempting to debate the law of gravity itself.
These are not normal times, however, and that is precisely what many are attempting to do. You will not be surprised to learn that Ms. Kasparian was viciously attacked for her self-evident and true statement, as was Margaret Atwood a couple of years ago, creator of the progressive fantasy, The Handmaid’s Tale. This time around, Natasha Lennard, a progressive reporter from The Intercept, chose to play incredibly dumb and hurl a gendered slur for good measure. “No one is calling /you/ directly these terms. Theyre [sic] used to describe, collectively, all people that can birth, so that the collective/abstract noun doesn’t exclude people in policies etc. Or are you enough of a cunt (oops, degrading?) that you’d like policy in language that excludes?” Progressives, of course, are immune to irony and Ms. Lennard is incapable of understand that she is only proving Ms. Kasparian’s point. The current refusal of the left to use the word women – collectively – excludes women, grouping a distinct and immutable biological group with members who are not biological women. Putting this another way, the progressives are actively doing the excluding, and on a grand scale. This is not a mute point when the Biden Administration intentionally replaced the term “mothers” with “birthing people” in their 2022 budget proposal. “The United States has the highest maternal mortality rate among developed nations, with an unacceptably high mortality rate for Black, American Indian/Alaska Native, and other women of color. To help end this high rate of maternal mortality and race-based disparities in outcomes among birthing people,” read the White House fiscal proposal and in a single substitution erased the identity of millions of women in the United States, sacrificing their birthright for a generic, meaningless phrase that robs women of their identity. Others piled on Ms. Kasparian, comparing her to supposed trans-enemy JK Rowling, and accusing her of being a transphobe. Roly West, a gay, British YouTuber, claimed “Actually thought you were one of the good ones but clearly I was wrong. Buying into the transphobic hysteria and spreading more Ignorance and hate to a minority going through absolute hell right now.. Shameful.” Kendall Brown combined the insult approach with the transphobia canard, writing, “No worries, we can just call you asshole from now on, since you’ve chosen to pile on the trans community with a taking [sic] point you KNOW is rooted in transphobia. So glad you chose to make this SUPER important point in the midst of historic attacks on trans rights!”
Thus, a statement of objective reality is magically transformed into an embrace of transphobia because a “talking point” – otherwise known as the truth – is rooted in it. There is yet another irony hidden here. Much as these activists talk about trans-rights, they are doing so at the obvious expense of the rights of biological women, rights which used to matter just a few years ago. If a biological woman declaring that she is indeed a woman and that is a unique aspect of her identity, one that cannot and should not be taken away, is transphobic for doing so, then you are robbing women everywhere of their own right to define themselves as they see fit. On the one hand, radical progressives want to ensure rights for trans people to define their identities, call it socialism of identity or biological reality. Nor is this the only right they want to crush. If these trans activists had their way, women would no longer be able to choose their sexual partners based on their own sexual preferences. In October 2021, the BBC covered how lesbian women in England are being pressured into engaging in relationships with trans women who still have male appendages. They told the story of Jennie. “Jennie is a lesbian woman. She says she is only sexually attracted to women who are biologically female and have vaginas. She therefore only has sex and relationships with women who are biologically female.” As a result, Jennie receives death threats. “I’ve had someone saying they would rather kill me than Hitler…They said they would strangle me with a belt if they were in a room with me and Hitler. That was so bizarrely violent, just because I won’t have sex with trans women,” she explained. According to the BBC, Jennie has been described variously as a “transphobic, a genital fetishist, a pervert and a ‘terf’ – a trans exclusionary radical feminist.” Another woman, Amy, also 24-years old, told the BBC that her ex-girlfriend verbally abused her for refusing to have a threesome with a transgender woman. “The first thing she called me was transphobic,” Amy said. “She immediately jumped to make me feel guilty about not wanting to sleep with someone.” (Wasn’t that considered another taboo once upon a time?) She continued, stating the obvious, “I know there is zero possibility for me to be attracted to this person. I can hear their male vocal cords. I can see their male jawline. I know, under their clothes, there is male genitalia. These are physical realities that, as a woman who likes women, you can’t just ignore.” How else can you describe this, except that the rights of these women are being trampled to preserve the rights of a group progressives suddenly feel is more important?
Disturbingly, these rights are being trampled in the name of science, where establishment figures are ever more frequently embracing the fantasy that “trans women are women.” In 2019, Scientific American declared that we must “Stop Using Phony Science to Justify Transphobia” by…using phony science to justify an obvious falsehood. “Contrary to popular belief, scientific research helps us better understand the unique and real transgender experience. Specifically, through three subjects: (1) genetics, (2) neurobiology and (3) endocrinology. So, hold onto your parts, whatever they may be. It’s time for ‘the talk.’” The author Simon(e) D Sun goes on to provide a masterclass in misdirection, using the veneer of science for nakedly political ends. “The popular belief that your sex arises only from your chromosomal makeup is wrong. The truth is, your biological sex isn’t carved in stone, but a living system with the potential for change.” She based this claim on the fact that the simple XX and XY chromosomes that separate men and women engage in a complex series of interactions during embryonic development before the fetus actually develops male and female parts. Sometimes, the process goes awry and an XX set of chromosomes can develop testicles or XY can develop ovaries. This is undoubtedly true, but it also proves the point: These organs of whatever kind, develop before the baby is even born and they cannot simply be replaced by force of will or personal choice. The same is true of the rest of her supposedly scientific points. Ms. Sun correctly noted that differences between male and female brains are not universal and are only true on average, stating that “For some properties like brain volume and connectivity, trans people possessed values in between those typical of cisgender males and females, both before and after transitioning. Another study found that for certain brain regions, trans individuals appeared similar to cis-individuals with the same gender identity. In that same study, researchers found specific areas of the brain where trans people seemed closer to those with the same assigned sex at birth. Other researchers discovered that trans people have unique structural differences from cis-individuals.” In other words, trans people can believe they are of another gender, but that does not actually make them another gender. At the risk of repeating myself, this should not be a controversial position. It is, in fact, reality. The science asserted in denial of it, only proves it.
The question then becomes why are so many so hell bent on denying this reality the same as the citizens of Oceania embraced the idea that two plus two equals five? It is impossible for me to believe that they all actually believe it. As I remarked in another post, no one can seriously think that if I were to wake up tomorrow, turn over and tell my wife I am actually a woman, she is honor bound by science to treat me as one and believe that I am the same as her. No one, and I mean no one truly believes this or anything like it, however radical they may be, and yet that is precisely what they are saying. Instead of believing it, they are saying it to prove they are part of the cause, so committed that they are willing to deny reality for it. There is no more powerful mechanism of control than getting someone to embrace an obvious falsehood. Once that path is embarked upon and a person is willing to state the opposite of what is true for political ends, the only end is tyranny. This is where we are in the year 2023, when women are no longer women, and can no longer say that they are.