August 19, 2018

Incels, Crossdreamers and Transgender Women

Natalie Wynn, also known as ContraPoints, has posted an interesting video about the relationship between incel culture and the way some crossdreamers and transgender people experience their lives.
Natalie Wynn, AKA ContraPoints

Unless you have been living under a cosy and warm rock for the last few years, you will know that incels, or "involuntary celibates", represents a sub-culture of seriously depressed and self-loathing men who think they are  inevitable losers in the game of love.

They think of themselves  as unattractive and pathetic "betas" who cannot beat the alpha-males regardless of much they try.

This is mostly because feminism has given women too much power, they say. The women can now go for the alpha-males, all the time. And if a woman does marry a "loser," she will always cheat on him with the mentioned alpha "Chad".

The return of skull measurements

All of this despair is sometimes mixed up with a pseudo-scientific philosophy based on old-fashioned phrenology and eugenics, where the shape of your skull tells you whether you are a winner or not.

The idea is that women are attracted to hypermasculine men with hypermasculine skulls. This understanding is based, I  suppose, on quasi-Darwinistic theories where masculine looks signal that the man is a protector with good genes. You know, in the way the male with the biggest tail is the coolest dude on the block in the world of peacocks.

This leads to a psychological no-win situation for those who believe they have a feminine, weak, skull. If this is the case, there seems to be literally nothing you can do to find true love and happiness. Your inferiority is inborn. End of story.


August 5, 2018

On lesbians, transgender people and feminism


Here is another question I got over at tumblr:
What definition of "lesbian" and "feminist" does this blog use? I appreciate that male-inclusionists use the term egalitarian for themselves. Why use feminist for yourselves when you support gender essentialism and refuse to acknowledge sex-based oppression?
Yes, I know, this is most likely a trans-exclusionary "radical feminist" trying to get me to show the world that I am misogynistic anti-feminist. But I cannot let an opportunity like this get wasted.  Here is my reply:

What is a lesbian?

A lesbian is normally defined as a homosexual woman, meaning that she is sexually attracted to people of her own gender. I believe that sexual orientation can often be more fluid than the binary this concept grows out of allows for, but for many this represents a perfect description of their sexuality.

Feminism

A feminist is a person who supports feminism. As I see it, feminism should at least include the following:

1. A clear understanding of how our societies (which are dominated by men and the Patriarchy) stop women from from achieving equals status to men as regards real power and influence, employment and salaries, legal framework, social welfare and services, as well as personal respect and validation. Moreover, feminism will have to include political means by which to change this.

But that is not enough. The oppression of women is so effective, because it is part of our language, the mental maps we use to navigate the world, and our institutions. This explains why women sometimes are as strong supporters of the status quo as men are (as in women voting for Trump and Putin).

Therefore feminism must include:

2. The goal of replacing the Patriarchy with a new understanding of biological sex, sexuality and cultural gender where men, women and non-binary people are understood as equals – politically, socially, and culturally. This is a society where being a man is no longer understood to be the default norm for being human, and where men no longer dominate.

Biological sex should be irrelevant. Sexual orientation should be irrelevant. Gender identity should be irrelevant. Everyone should be seen as human first, anything else second. But we are definitely not there yet. I live in a country where the three most powerful politicians are women, but where women continues to be belittled, ignored, dismissed and harassed because they are women.

August 2, 2018

What about non- and detransitioning transgender people?

I got the following anonymous question over at tumblr:

Why do you invalidate and devalue the experiences of detransitioners? Stop talking over them just bc they make you feel threatened. They're actually very lovely and they send an important message that we need to explore other options for dysphoria management. What about trans ppl with chronic illnesses that can't do HRT? They need our support but we just ignore them.

Here is my answer:

I do not devalue the experiences of detransitioners, nor do I feel threatened by them.

I have underlined repeatedly that the complexity and diversity of sex and gender lead to difficult choices for many transgender people (and I am using the word transgender in its wide “umbrella” sense here).

People with gender dysphoria may chose not to transition for many different and legitimate choices. I am a gender dysphoric transgender person and I have not transitioned.

Given the rampant transphobia and homophobia in our societies, I am also not surprised see that some who have transitioned find living and presenting as their target sex difficult, and detransition for that and other reasons.

Regretters used in anti-trans propaganda

However, right now the very existence of “regretters” is used by transphobic TERFs and right wing fundamentalists to invalidate the identities of all transgender people.

The argument is that if some are detransitioning, all those who transition are “fake” and that transitioning is a recipe for mental illness and suffering. This is why I over and over again underline the following:

1. Only a small minority of those who transition regret doing so (between 0.6 and 4 percent according to the studies I have read).

2. The great majority of those who transition report a much higher quality of life and health after transitioning. While the attempted suicide rate among all transgender people is around 40%, the similar rate for those that have transition is more or less the same as the general population.

I say this not in order to devalue the experience of detransitioners, but to ensure that their very existence is not not used to undermine the legitimacy of transitioning as an essential  tool in transgender health care.

Discuss crossdreamer and transgender issues!