Transphobia

arthur

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In the course if a debate about the breakaway of some Labour MPs on the Social Club forum, I quoted what Suzanne Moore had said in the Guardian. An Exewebber rebutted this by saying “Literally negative interest in what the Guardian's arch-transphobe has to say on anything.”
I replied asking what a transphobe was, and whether this was “a feminist who believed that people with penises aren’t women”.

The Exeweb mods decided that this remark was transphobic and removed it. This I find deeply concerning. It implies that any questioning around transgender issues is liable to be classed as “transphobic”, even though a debate is still very much in progress. The whole issue of legally self defining one’s gender is yet to be decided and the consultation is still going on. At the core of this debate is how one defines gender and there is a sizeable and respectable body of opinion which says that self identifying alone is not enough, i.e. a person with a penis deciding they are a woman cannot legally be a woman. This was all I said, yet it was deemed transphobic.

For what its worth my position is this.
I have no issue whatever with transsexuals, people like Jan Morris who undergo complex sex change procedures. I also have no issue with men who want me to think of them as women, who dress and make up accordingly and ask me to call them by a woman’s name. I am quite happy for them to do that and I will use whatever personal pronoun they request when addressing/referring to them.
But I will not accept that they are legally women and entitled to use spaces reserved for women or compete in women’s sporting events. Simply “self identifying” is wrong on so many levels.

Firstly, if I were to self identify as a black person, I don’t imagine the black community would be particularly enamoured of my behaviour. I would be told that I could not possibly understand what it is to be black, the centuries of oppression and degradation they have suffered at the hands of white people, and all the other factors that make up black identity. The community might welcome my solidarity and support, but the idea that I would be embraced as one of their own is ludicrous and it would be deeply insulting for me to hope for that.

Secondly there is no way I can legally change my racial identity anyway. If I cannot legally self identify as black, why should I be able legally to self identify as a woman?

Thirdly, and probably most importantly, this focus on identity and “who you feel you are” borders on the decadent, or “bourgeois individualism gone mad”. The point about any struggle for rights is that its about changing society, its structures and behaviours. Focusing on “my identity” and how hurt I feel when Germaine Greer turns up and says something I don’t like is nothing less than a cop out from the wider struggle.
Gender equality is about society rather than the individual. If men or women feel uncomfortable with the roles and stereotypes that society imposes on them, then challenge them. I see nothing progressive in dressing up in a narrow caricature of womanhood (long hair, lipstick and a dress) and trying to prevent women having a voice. People with penises have been haranguing women for centuries – it’s time it stopped.

I hope Exeweb will review its policy of judging any questioning or discussion of the transgender agenda as transphobic. It goes back to my original question – what is transphobia anyway?
 

RaeUK

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Whilst I can't comment on Exeweb policy - that's way above my paygrade - I wholeheartedly agree with the substance of the OP.
We have been, for about 7 to 10 years give or take - sleepwalking into a very serious and dangerous position. Once upon a time, a transwoman was seen as a transexual who had undergone a meaningful transition. This is how most of exeweb, I suspect, still think of it.
However, the transgender movement has been swift to use transexuals / transwomen as a cover for gender identity politics. It is a fearsome fundamentalist movement that has taken hold in many areas of the western world. 80% of transgender transwomen will not undergo any transition whatsoever. They retain the full compliment of male genitalia with matching sex drive. These are the people who have managed to bludgeon the opposition with false calls of 'transphobe', 'transphobic' and 'terf' in order to silence dissenters. They have won many battles but - and you must sincerely hope - will not win the war.
Trans ideology is based firmly on Queer Theory. Which in turn offers full support to mainstreaming and normalizing paedophilia. There is a direct link. It is also a misogynistic and homophobic ideology. For example, if a lesbian refuses 'ladydick' (yup, I know), they will face a huge amount of online abuse and, of course, be labelled transphobic. Not only online, this happens to young lesbians at university. They are abused and shunned by their peers for refusing to accept penis. The abuse can be so severe that there have been suicides.
If you are the parent of a young girl, you had better damn well wake up and start taking notice.
Let her join the Girl Guides? Not on your nelly. You won't be told that she has a high chance of sharing a tent with a testosterone fuelled and fully male equipped 'transwoman'. Single sex spaces? You better hope those long fought for refuges don't completely fall. We already have many cases of young girls refusing to drink at school as they don't want to use mixed sex facilities. That is a tragedy.
Luckily, in this country, we have determined grassroots womens movements trying to get the message of what is going on out there. These are brave people, be under no illusion. They have their venues picketed by men in ski masks, they have bomb threats made, they have their names spread across social media - including home addresses, childrens names and schools - they face death threats, rape threats, and losing their jobs. One highly regarded academic had urine poured through her letterbox.
And in this post, my dears, I haven't even scratched the surface.
Worried that a comment on exeweb may be transphobic? That's the very least of your worries.
 

elginCity

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....there is no way I can legally change my racial identity anyway. If I cannot legally self identify as black, why should I be able legally to self identify as a woman?...
Interesting debate, although I won't pretend to fully understand it all.

Interesting analogy too, arthur, racial and gender identity. Stand to be corrected but does racial identity have a legal status ? Michael Jackson comes to mind, whether bleaching his skin or vitiligo, plastic surgery on his nose to look like Diana Ross or to look like a white man, there's no doubt many perceived his racial identity to be white in his later years. Even though he self identified as a black man throughout, many wouldn't have identified him as such.

Identity is not only how one feels about oneself, but it's also how others perceive you, a group identity and acceptance. The trick is combining the two, not easy.
 

Jason H

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By extension there was the court case in the Netherlands where someone tried to legally change their age in order to avoid age discrimination - the case was thrown out.
 

arthur

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Still waiting for some Exeweb guidelines, and supporting reasoning, on what does and does not constitute infractable transphobic abuse
 

arthur

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While we wait for these guidelines, here is an extract from an article in The Times reporting that the chief executive of Stonewall has resigned after a growing protest by leading gay and lesbian supporters against her stance on promoting transgender rights.

Maureen Chadwick, one the charity’s former ambassadors and donors and creator of hit television programmes including Bad Girls, Footballers’ Wives and Waterloo Road, said that she and her partner, Kath Gotts, quit after Stonewall embraced what they called “the ‘trans’ cause”.

She said: “Many other longstanding supporters of Stonewall, including transsexuals, share our concerns and dismay that the very organisation we helped to fund and turn into the ‘go to’ LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] authority, advising political parties and corporates, is now telling schoolchildren that a bearded man with a penis can be a lesbian and any girls and boys deviating from 1950s gender norms are in the wrong body.”
 

Matt Russell

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Don't lose hope arthur, I'm sure someone "in charge" will respond to you soon.
Many, maybe like me, haven't posted on this topic, although that doesn't necessarily signify a lack of interest.
 
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