Gender Identity Ideology, the Trans Rights Movement, and homophobia
27 September 2020
Women at Manchester Pride 2019.Source https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDi-jFVBLA8&t=596s
How homophobia drives the desire for transition
Top surgery is a mastectomy
I mentioned in a previous
article that many Gender Identity Ideologists believe that people can be
born with a female brain or soul in a male body and vice-versa (1). This
is one of the justifications for ‘transitioning’ people to appear to be
of the opposite sex. Another driving
force behind ‘transitioning’ is homophobia. With both sexism and homophobia the push for ‘transitioning’ seems to come from an urge to ‘fix’ people who are not conforming to sexist stereotypes.
It is worth bearing in mind that children and young people who would be gay, lesbian, or bisexual in adulthood are disproportionately likely to be labelled transgender in childhood. If left alone and not ‘transitioned’ their dysphoria could recede after puberty, and they might live out their lives quite happily as gay, lesbian, or bisexual. In light of this, one researcher, criticising the transitioning of children, has asked: “I am actually wondering what we are trying to accomplish here? Are we trying to...reduce the number of gay and lesbian adults?”(2)
Some parents of gender non-conforming children can be homophobic themselves, or worried about bullying, or bending to outside social pressure to ‘normalise’ their child. Parents can be encouraged by medical or other professionals to “transition” their child. In other cases teens are being bullied by peers, or picking up messages from the wider society that there is something wrong with them for being same- sex attracted, which drives them to want to be seen as the opposite sex. The hope is that by ‘transitioning’ the person who is same-sex attracted will no longer be seen as gay or lesbian but as heterosexual by adopting a new persona. (3)
This clip from a documentary in 1967 shows us how Transexualism can be seen as more acceptable to some than being gay. The host says: “We know that homosexuality is a psychological aberration, to be treated by a competent psychiatrist, but what of those like Vicky who don’t want to be treated, who want to be women. Are we to judge? “ (4)
These sort of mental gymnastics, of appearing to ‘turn’ someone from gay/lesbian, or suspected gay/lesbian, to heterosexual, is not confined to the past. Reading contemporary cases of people identified as trans you see this sort of attitude, especially regarding younger people. It is obvious from reading these stories that the pressure to conform to societal expectations is immense and a large part of the reason for ‘transitioning’ the child.
It is important to remember that just as there are different positions amongst the Left on this issue there are also differing positions amongst those on the Right. There is a strand of conservatism that supports ‘transition’ just as there are strands which oppose it.
In this extract below a mother from a conservative background in the US shows how homophobia, fear of social disapproval, concern over their child’s social acceptance and even safety, can make ‘transitioning’ seem a relatively attractive option.
I Had 4 Boys — Until One of Them Told Me She Was Really a Girl
“...I was raised as a devout, conservative Christian with strong Republican values in the South... It's a place where being different can not only be unforgiving, but unsafe. I was, and am, an active member of our local church. I used to lead a small ministry teaching Bible study, and I didn't support or condone those living the LGBTQ lifestyle. That was just part of the Christian makeup I'd been brought up to believe.
...From the moment my child was born, everything about Kai was geared toward femininity
...As a Christian mother raising a Christian family, it was a very difficult time for me.
Shortly after Kai turned 2, friends and family were starting to notice her behavior. Living in Pearland, Texas, that meant we were getting a lot of sidelong glances and questions. Kai would only play with other girls and girls' toys.
Family members were flat-out asking me if this kid was gay . It made me nervous, and I was constantly worried about what people would think of me, of us and of my parenting. While family was questioning whether Kai was gay, a Christian friend of mine, who is also a child psychologist, asked me: "Have you noticed Kai's feminine behavior?" It was such a gentle question, as opposed to the harsh accusations of others.
There were time-outs, so many time-outs. There were spankings and yelling matches and endless prayers. I even contacted the daycare Kai attended and asked them to put away every single "girl" toy.
... when Kai turned 4, I finally let her transition...A few weeks after I stopped punishing Kai for "acting girly" (5)In another interview this same mother mentions googling conversion therapy.
"I remember even thinking before Kai was 3, that I think this kid might be gay. And I thought that that could not happen, and that would not happen . We started praying fervently. Prayers turned into googling conversion therapy, and how can we implement these techniques at home to make Kai not be like this. Putting her in timeout for acting like a girl, putting her in timeout for stealing girl toys. Spanking her...REALLY spanking her, every time she would say you know I'm a girl." (6)Scott Newgent, a biological woman from the US, has written about their story and how “my decision to transition was due to homophobia.” (7). They were in a relationship with a woman from a homophobic family who did not want to be seen as a lesbian. Scott has suffered severe pain and other serious ill effects from the surgery and now campaigns against childhood medical ‘transitioning’. Scott warns: “We cannot allow our children to transition because we refuse to accept homosexuality” (7,8)
Another example below of a homophobic parent happier with a ‘transitioned’ heterosexual appearing child than a gay one.
The problem with homophobia driving transition is not just a US problem. An article by Janice Turner in The Times newspaper examined this phenomenon in Britain:
“Alex was catcalled and harassed relentlessly by a gang of boys: “I was a bully’s dream: weedy, geeky and gay.” For three years, she endured shouts of “lezzer” or “you’re a boy” without reporting it, growing ever more troubled. She self- harmed by cutting her legs where her mother wouldn’t notice. She hated her now developing body, although cropping her long hair into a cool boyish cut felt great.
…Then, around 15, Alex told a teacher about the bullying, self-harm and gender dysphoria. A school counsellor made an appointment with an LGBT group, Over the Rainbow, which gave Alex a folder about transgender issues, including pictures of trans celebrities and how to begin the NHS pathway to transition. It was a lightbulb moment.
…At 16, he [the journalist is writing about the same person here] moved to sixth-form college where no one knew him, assuming his new male identity. As a man, his confidence soared.”(9)This tweet below from a same-sex attracted girl, who identifies as a boy, indicates the problem with homophobia in school, and their fear of being seen as a lesbian.
Another parent below who wondered if their 2 year old might be gay due to the child not conforming to sexist stereotypes. This woman is the CEO of Mermaids, a trans charity for children, young people, and their families in Britain. This group does a lot of training for professionals.
This is a tweet from Mermaids itself below, implying that they see being heterosexual as contraindicated in labelling a child transgender, and so by extension being same-sex attracted increases the likelihood of a young person being seen as transgender.
These ideas, about what is seen as normal and what is not, echoes some of the thinking of early proponents of the concept of Transexualism [my emphasis in bold below]:
‘The normal male (normal by his genetic inheritance) has his masculine build and voice, an ample supply of androgen, satisfactory potency, a sperm count that assures fertility, feels himself to be a man, is sexually attracted to women , and would be horrified to wear female clothes or “change his sex.” He is often husband and father, works in a job or profession in accord with his sex and gender that is never questioned legally or socially. The genetically normal female presents the opposite picture. She feels, looks, acts, and functions as a woman, wants to be nothing else, usually marries and has children. She dresses and makes up to be attractive to men and her sex and gender are never doubted either by society or by the law’. Harry Benjamin & C. L. Ihlenfeld, 1973. (10)Words of warning from a Gay man and a lesbian
This is an interesting warning from a Gay man about the potential problem with labelling young people as transgender and putting them on hormones:
‘The actor Rupert Everett has expressed concerns about parents who seek medical treatment for children who question their gender.
The 57-year-old, who is gay, revealed he wanted to be a girl as he grew up and dressed exclusively as one when he was a child.
… Everett, currently starring in the BBC1 show The Musketeers, told the Sunday Times magazine: “I really wanted to be a girl. Thank God the world of now wasn’t then, because I’d be on hormones and I’d be a woman. After I was 15 I never wanted to be a woman again.” ‘(11)This lesbian also talks about how she hated her body and being a girl when young
Clinicians raise red flags
Even the Tavistock’s Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) clinicians in Britain have spoken out about the homophobia driving ‘transitioning’. An article in The Times, reported: “So many potentially gay children were being sent down the pathway to change gender, two of the clinicians said there was a dark joke among staff that “there would be no gay people left”. “It feels like conversion therapy for gay children,” one male clinician said. “I frequently had cases where people started identifying as trans after month of horrendous bullying for being gay,” he told The Times.” (12)
Irish children are seen under this service, so this is potential worry for parents here.
BBC Newsnight also ran an exposé of problems at the Gender Identity Development Service last June. They interviewed some service providers, as well as having information from a leaked internal report. One former clinician was quoted as saying:
"We did have a lot of families and parents who would actively tell us that: Oh, I'm so glad, at least my child is not gay or lesbian. Implying that having a trans outcome would be better for their children."(13)Information from the leaked document shows another clinician had said:
“I had a case, there was a lot of trauma in the family. The young person had come out initially as a lesbian and had faced a lot of homophobic bullying, both very subtly within the family, and quite openly in school, and suddenly the young person changed their mind and they started identifying as trans” (13)In some cases clinicians thought referring for puberty blockers was not right for some children but they were over-ruled by GIDS director Polly Carmichael. In one case a clinician said “The young person had very clearly told me and my colleague that ‘My mum wants the hormone more than I do’. And when we took it to senior management - Polly Carmichael - she suggested that we refer [for puberty blockers], even though this was not clinically indicated” (13)
The LGB Alliance in Britain highlighted concerns last April about homophobia driving transition.
This clinician had also told the LGB alliance that the feelings of internalised homophobia often drove teenage girls to seek to “transition” (14).
An extreme form of Gay Conversion Therapy?
The blunt face of homophobia driving ‘transition’ can be seen in some places such as Iran where there is pressure on gay men and lesbian women to ‘transition’ because being in a same-sex relationship is illegal.
“Iran is one of a handful of countries where homosexual acts are punishable by death.Clerics do, however accept the idea that a person may be trapped in a body of the wrong sex. So homosexuals can be pushed into having gender reassignment surgery - and to avoid it many flee the country.” (15)One woman interviewed by the BBC told them that:
If police officers asked for her ID and noticed she was a girl, she says, they would reproach her: "Why are you like this? Go and change your gender." This became her ambition. "I was under so much pressure that I wanted to change my gender as soon as possible," she says.
The BBC piece also reported that:
Shabnam - not her real name - who is a psychologist at a state-run clinic in Iran says some gay people now end up being pushed towards surgery. Doctors are told to tell gay men and women that they are "sick" and need treatment...
"I think a human rights violation is taking place,” says Shabnam. What makes me sad is that organisations that are supposed to have a humanitarian and therapeutic purpose can take the side of the government, instead of taking care of people." (15)The Economist also covered the same issue more recently:
“I realised quite early on that I was gay,” says Soly, a 25-year -old chef from Tehran. As a young boy, he would strut about the house in his mother’s high heels and developed crushes on male cartoon characters. But after he was expelled from school for wearing eye-liner, his parents took him to a psychologist who offered a different explanation. “He told me I was transgender and had to change my sex.”
...the regime’s encouragement of sex-change surgery is related to its intolerance of homosexuality, which is a capital offence. Gay Iranians face pressure to change their sex regardless of whether they want to, say activists and psychologists in Iran. Therapists tell patients with same-sex desires that they may be transgender, not gay. “I thought I was trans until I was 18, because the only information online and in newspapers was about transsexuals,” says a psychologist in Tehran who is a lesbian. “It is a system where homosexuals are not educated and the law does not protect them.” (16)Sometimes you see Transactivists speaking positively about easier access to legal and medical ‘transitioning’ in some conservative countries, without acknowledging the potential role of homophobia (or sexism) in influencing this. That Transgenderism is more widely accepted than being Gay or Lesbian is indicated by more countries allowing legal gender/sex change than same-sex marriage. (17)
Unfortunately, it is not just a question of ignoring these glaring issues mentioned above. Some Transactivists go on to express homophobic views themselves, and unfortunately there is some tolerance for these views within the broader Trans-Rights-Movement.
Homophobia within the Trans-Rights-Movement
There seems to be two main sources of homophobia with the Trans-Rights-Movement.
One is coming from people who are same-sex attracted themselves but who identify as the opposite sex, so who now go through the world identifying as heterosexual. Some of these people (not all) display homophobic attitudes, which was possibly a factor in some of them ‘transitioning’ in the first place.
The other, and probably the main, homophobic current is coming from heterosexual males (generally middle-aged) who have ‘come out’ as women and who identify as lesbians. They think lesbians are being prejudiced for not wanting to have sex with them.
It is important to be aware that the label Transgender is quite a broad umbrella term covering quite different groups of people, some with conflicting interests (18). As I mentioned earlier, most of the younger people who identify as transgender will turn out to be same-sex attracted, but most of the older male transitioners seem to be heterosexual (so attracted to women). Even though medical intervention seems to be quite heavily promoted for younger people, most adults do not have surgery and retain their male genetalia (19).
Some of these heterosexual males aggressively target and shame lesbians for their sexuality. I’ll give some examples of this below, but just to comment at first. I think this issue shows the danger of de-linking ones political philosophy from material reality. We see increasingly bizarre claims being made, and not only that, but demands that we all adopt these views as our own or be denounced as transphobic and bigoted.
This quote from George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984 seems apt: “In the end 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...the very existence of external reality, was tacitly denied by their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common sense.”
To Gender Identity Ideologists someone’s identity, or self-perception, over-rides biology or reality. So, if a man says he is a woman he is a woman and if a woman says she is a man then she is a man. The next ‘logical’ step in this thinking is that if a man who is attracted to women says he is a lesbian then he is a lesbian.
*Charlotte Clymer, formerly Charlie Clymer, has an interesting background. See reference 20 below.
So under this new way of thinking, it is considered to be denying these males their identity, and transphobic, to say males can’t be lesbians or that lesbians don’t have penises. By their logic lesbians are transphobic and discriminatory for being lesbians. This is a selection of this sort of view.
The female penis
In order to square the circle,
and try to justify the absurd position of insisting that men can be lesbians,
you get an argument that a penis can be a female sex-organ, if the person
with that penis identifies as a woman.
And lesbianism gets re-classified as a fetish.
New form of conversion therapy?
Just like people who advocate gay conversion therapy, some Transactivists suggest lesbians should try to overcome their disinterest or dislike of penises and that they should include males in their dating pool.
Magdalen Berns (a lesbian, who died unfortunately last year) produced some YouTube commentaries on this issue. Some are responses to a male Transactivist who identifies as a woman and lesbian. He wasn’t just some isolated commentator but had a large following and was a writer for Everyday Feminism. One of his videos claiming that “genital preferences” in sexual relationships are discriminatory/prejudiced was done in collaboration with Everyday Feminism (21). He specifically criticised gay men and lesbians for their sexual orientation in that piece. In another piece, where he suggests that lesbians might be transphobic for not wanting to have sex with males, his arguments included that “some women have penises ” and ”I’m trying to show that preferences [by lesbians] for women with vagina’s over women with penises might be partially informed by the influence of a cissexist society”(22). As if Lesbians are conditioned socially to only want sex with women! He implied that the only legitimate reason for women to reject people with penises sexually was due to sexual assault, regarding this he says “Take your time to heal and work through your trauma at our own pace”. As Berns points out, his arguments are very similar to that of traditional homophobes (23).
Some other examples below of people suggesting lesbians should consider sex with people with penises:
Just to note, Cis lesbian means actual lesbian, and Transwomen are male.
The term Cotton Ceiling has been coined to name this supposed sexual ‘discrimination/oppression’ by lesbians against male ‘lesbians’.
Cotton Ceiling is a reference to women’s underwear the men want to get past. Unfortunately this view is not totally marginal within the Trans-Rights-movement, for example Planned Parenthood Toronto ran a workshop on how to overcome the cotton ceiling.
Lesbianism compared to racism
Sometimes lesbianism is compared to racism, that is that lesbians rejecting males as sexual partners is comparable to a white person hating a black person, or automatically excluding black people from their dating pool. These are some examples of this thinking below (it is very common for Transactivists to compare women who don’t accept that men can be women to racists, bizarre as this may seem).
For more examples of people
arguing that males can be lesbian, that lesbians are bigots for not wanting
to have sex with them, and the Cotton Ceiling ideology see https://terfisaslur.com/cotton-ceiling/
Ireland and male ‘lesbians’
For anyone who thinks this ideology will not take on in Ireland Gay Community News (based in Ireland) did a piece on Lesbian trailblazers to mark Lesbian Visibility Day a few months ago. They included a biological male in the list of lesbians. This ‘lesbian’ is the Chair of TENI which is the main Trans advocacy group in Ireland. (24) I am not mentioning this individual to pick on them, but to show that this reactionary view has traction within the movement in Ireland. There is another Transactivist working with this organisation who also identifies as a lesbian (though also as bi).
Gay men now targeted also
Even though most of the ire regarding supposedly ‘transphobic’ sexual orientation has been directed at Lesbians, Gay men are starting to get some flack for not wanting to have sex with women who identify as gay men. Heterosexual women who identify as gay men is an uncommon Transgender identity but it does exist.
These are some examples below of gay men being shamed for their sexuality.
There was a piece this summer on the BBC website which claimed that being gay is transphobic (just to explain the terminology, transmen are female. Ironically gay men also get ‘called out’ in this article for being attracted to transwomen, who are male. Heads we win, tails you lose.)
This article was slightly updated since that screenshot above was taken. See reference 25 below for a link to the new version.
Even heterosexual men are occasionally shamed for their sexuality, from no less than the UN in this case.
i.e. would you still date them if they were male. https://twitter.com/UNGeneva/status/972919084504567813
Bisexual people can’t even escape criticism and redefinition of their sexual orientation. This is because the bi in bisexual reminds people that there are only two sexes (this goes against the current trend in Transactivism which insists that sex is a spectrum), as well as bisexuality being a sexual rather than a gender- identity-based orientation. After being approached by the organisation GLAAD, the Merriam Webster dictionary recently changed its entry for Bisexual to include: “relating to, or characterized by sexual or romantic attraction to people of one's own gender identityand of other gender identities”. [A heterosexual person could now define themselves as bisexual under this definition]. Thankfully they’ve retained the old (correct) definition alongside this, based on sexual orientation, for now at least. (26)
LGBT groups changing the meaning of sexual orientation
It is worth noting that some LGBT groups are changing the definitions of sexual orientations to fit in with these new Gender Identity and Queer theory ideas. This first set of definitions below are from one of BelongTo’s training booklets for professionals who work with young people (27). BelongTo is an LGBTI+ group in Ireland. I’ve highlighted some words below.
Bisexual: Someone who is attracted to more than one gender e.g. both men and women.
Gay: Someone who is mainly attracted to people of the same gender. Gay usually refers to men, as many women prefer to call themselves Lesbian
Heterosexual: Someone who is attracted to people of the opposite gender.
Lesbian: A woman who is primarily attracted to other women
Sexual Orientation : This is a term used to describe someone’s emotional, romantic, and sexual attraction to other people
Gender expression: How we show our gender through our clothing, hair, behaviour, etc.
Gender identity: A person’s deeply felt internal identity as female, male, or another identity such as non-binary
This second list of definitions below is from the Gender Recognition Act (2015) Review Group Report. The Review Group was appointed by, and reported to, the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (28) The chairperson of the GRA Review group was also Executive Director of BelongTo (the group mentioned above):
Bisexual: Someone who is attracted to two genders
Gay: someone who is mainly attracted to people of the same gender. In the past, the term‘homosexual’ was used.
Lesbian: a woman who is mainly attracted to other women.
Heterosexual/straight: Someone who is attracted to people of a different gender
Gender expression: How we show our gender through clothing, hair, voice, behaviour, etc
Gender identity our deeply felt internal experience of our own gender...
So looking at both of these sets of definitions, they’ve replaced attraction to a sex with attraction to a gender for Gay men, bisexual people, and heterosexual people. But according to their own definition, gender is an internal feeling/belief, not a description of someone’s sex, so they’ve de-linked sexuality from sex for these sexual orientations. Also notice the use of the words mainly and primarily, instead of exclusively, in the definitions of who gay and lesbian people are attracted to (though in the case of gay men they’ve already messed up the definition with the use of gender instead of sex).
Lesbians get to be “mainly” attracted to women in these definitions, though since according to Gender identity Ideology men can be women it doesn’t necessarily mean they are accepting lesbianism as a same-sex orientation.
Is sexual orientation a wrong and outdated concept?
There does seem to be a push to erase the concept of sexual orientation altogether, which unfortunately sometimes goes along with shaming people for their sexuality.
If you listen to comments by SDLP councillor Séamus de Faoite’s in an interview on BBC Radio’s Nolan Show he implies that having a sexual orientation is outdated and wrong. (29) De Faoite says, “For a long time we’ve talked about the idea of people having types and everything else like that and I think that increasingly is becoming outdated...” Nolan (the interviewer) asks “Are you saying people can’t have a type of person they’re attracted to without being described as being discriminatory?” de Faoite answers “No, I’m saying that I think that’s an outdated concept” It is worth listening to the whole interview to get the tone of the discussion (see reference 29 below).
This is another example of similar thinking: “Against the increasingly colorful backdrop of gender diversity, a binary label like “gay” or “lesbian” starts to feel somewhat stale and stodgy. When there are so many genders out there, is it closed-minded — or worse, harmful and exclusionary — if you identify with a label that implies you’re only attracted to one?” (30)
This idea of getting rid of labels to describe sexual orientations might sound liberating at first glance, and I can see the attraction in it for younger people who are still figuring out their sexuality, but there is a problem with the idea on a political level.
Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual people fought for their right to be able to be themselves, and part of this fight included naming themselves and forming groups for support and political activism. If everything becomes unnamed and undefined it could become harder to organise politically, socially, and to set boundaries, as can be seen when men decide they are lesbians. Divesting people of accurate words to describe themselves could be disempowering rather than liberating.
As well as this, if we don’t have a name for minority sexualities, how do we legally defend people from discrimination (where anti-discrimination laws on the basis of sexuality exist)?
It would be one thing if this change in language was happening organically from below, but it is being pushed from above and enforced socially via shaming and exclusion of those who resist.
An example of the problem with deciding sexual orientation is outdated or wrong. Lesbian removed from dating app for being a lesbian (I’ve seen a similar thing happen to a gay man as well).
Shift in emphasis in LGBT groups
There seems to be a shift in focus in formerly LGB groups, often now relabelled LGBTQ+ groups, from same-sex relationships issues towards the priorities of people with identities such as Queer (which includes straight people) or Transgender. These are some interesting figures on the frequency of the words, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual , and Transgender in annual reports by LGBT groups. This wouldn’t tell us the context in which these words were used, but it does show an apparent shift in focus. (For the source, and other examples, see reference 31 below)
From Equality Network’s website “The Equality Network is a leading national charity working for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) equality and human rights in Scotland” https://www.equality-network.org/
And an example from the US
GLAAD was formerly the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defemation
One thing which could be influencing this change of direction could be funding. An author from the US has suggested that :
“The transgender movement is not marginalized voices finally being heard; it is a case of large amounts of money being heard.”She points out that:
“According to Funders for LGBTQ Issues (FFLI), funding specifically earmarked for transgender causes began rapidly increasing in 2012; by 2016 it outstripped the funding for gay, lesbian and bisexual combined (a total of $13.2m), at a cool $22 million total in funding, specifically earmarked for transgender causes.Queer Identified straight people taking over LGBT groups and spaces
As funding specifically for gay men and lesbian women has stagnated or declined in the same period, transgender funding has increased year on year, from $3m in 2010 to $22m in 2016.” (32)
Another reason for the change in direction of formerly LGB groups is because of straight people joining them and pushing them in a different direction. These straight people include men who identify as lesbians, and straight people of both sexes who identify as Queer. A lesbian posted a very good piece a few years ago on the online forum Mumsnet about what was happening in these spaces. I am going to quote quite a bit of it here as I think it is very good at explaining what has been going on:
“One of the problems for young lesbians...is that, when they reach out to ‘their’ community, eg join an LGBT group for support, what they get isn’t their community at all but something very hostile.
..I think the two main...identity appropriations that cause problems are:
… heterosexual biological males who identify as women and, therefore, as lesbians and have hijacked our community (support groups, social groups, bars, forums, you name it) and believe that lesbians should be open to having sex with someone with a penis if they ‘identify’ as a woman (see ‘the cotton ceiling’). This group has widened further e.g. including ‘transfeminine men’ and men who identify as a woman part-time (so get to walk through life as a heterosexual man but just ‘identify’ as a lesbian for a few hours to access a lesbian group or lesbian club ..)...‘Queer’ straight trans allies
... For those who don’t know, queer is now used as an all-encompassing term for anyone who doesn’t identify as a heterosexual “cis” person. However, it is also preferred by certain people over terms like lesbian, gay and bisexual because it does away with what are considered the rigid boundaries of ‘gender’ and sexuality e.g. lesbian and gay meaning being attracted to the same sex, bisexual as being attracted to ‘both’ sexes, when certain people reject these categories and the idea that there are two sexes.
[she explains how ‘queer’ women can be straight, e.g. if a woman dates a man who identifies as a woman or gender-queer.]
..these ‘queer’ woman become
involved in what was formerly the lesbian and bisexual women’s community.
However, these trans uber-allies have a lot of views that are contrary
to the interests particularly of lesbians. They believe that lesbians have
‘cis’ privilege and also that lesbians (along with gay men) are the most
privileged people in the LGBT community. They believe that lesbians are
narrow-minded and transphobic for only wanting to date other biological
women and oppress transwomen who can’t break through the ‘cotton ceiling’
of their underwear.
I’m not even sure when this stuff started because, like most of us, due to the blurring of the meaning
of words, I just didn’t see
...This blurring of the language enables them to do it – but even in cases where you can see it for yourself (e.g. if you are looking at what is clearly a straight couple, who you know will be read by everyone they meet as a straight couple, even if the guy is wearing a bit of eyeliner), you couldn’t say anything as you couldn’t suggest that he wasn’t a woman (or genderqueer or whatever).
... As lesbians step away from the LGBT 'community' and more ‘lesbian and queer women’ emerge from the two groups referred to above, an increasing proportion of ‘us’ are actually a subset of heterosexual men and women who loathe lesbians and support the transactivist agenda - but, because of the way language is being twisted, you’d never know that.” (It is worth reading her whole post which is linked to in reference 33 below)
There is resistance to what is going on from some Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual people who are starting to organise within groups, such as the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Alliance and Get the L Out [L stands for Lesbian]. (34, 35)
Get the L out did a small action at the Pride in London parade in 2018 to highlight the threat to lesbians from Gender Identity Ideology and Transactivism. (36)
There was quite a bit of negative media coverage following the action. The organisers of the Parade, Pride in London, also voiced their disapproval:
“We reject what this group stands for. They do not share our values, which are about inclusion and respect and support for the most marginalised parts of our community.” (37)When it comes to Transactivism, inclusion often means excluding lesbians.
In stark contrast to LGB movements, which emphasised acceptance of oneself, and whose members campaigned against conversion therapies and chemical castration treatments, the Gender Identity Movement promotes: the idea that children can be born in the wrong body; that not conforming to sexist stereotypes or being (potentially) gay/lesbian is a problem fixable by ‘transitioning’; that major medical interventions, including life-long hormones, mastectomies, and sterilisation, can be the path to being ones ‘true self’. (38, 39)
LGB movements have traditionally not been science or biology deniers, and did not lobby governments to remove women’s right to privacy, or try to force on the public new and contrary definitions of commonly used words such as man or woman. In both their central outlook and method of operating there is no similarity to my mind between Gay and Lesbian Liberation Movements and the current Trans-Rights-Movement.
Unfortunately a lot of the left have gone along with the regressive ideas of Gender Identity Ideology out of a mixture of demoralisation, de-politicisation, and opportunism, in the hopes of recruiting younger people influenced by Queer Theory. It is disconcerting to see people who are theoretically aware that “The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas” (40), unquestioningly adopting the regressive ideas of the Gender Identity movement, which have come down primarily from Academia. Unfortunately the pressure to conform to the dominant ideology of the age is always there, but it is not a fait accompli, as resistance has shown.
In the next article in this series I will be looking at some of the concerns being raised about the medical treatments being promoted as essential Trans-health-care.
(2) Eric Vilain, UCLA professor, criticising transitioning of minors https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gi9gieLb8mM&feature=youtu.be
I’ll be covering the medical side of this issue in more detail in the next article.
(3) I thought this information from a study was interesting: “all persisters [people who persisted in identifying as the opposite sex] reported feeling exclusively attracted to persons of the same natal sex, which confirmed their gender identity as they viewed this attraction as a heterosexual attraction. They did not consider themselves homosexual or lesbian”. Steensma et al 2011, Desisting and persisting gender dysphoria after childhood: A qualitative study, in Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry https://www.acthe.fr/upload/1474384121-2011-01-07-genderdysphoria-desisting-and-persisting.pdf
(6) https://twitter.com/wassermannsusu/status/1282786074650173441?s=20 that is a clip from a longer piece which is on the ACLU [Americam Civil Liberties Union] website https://www.aclu.org/issues/lgbt-rights/transgender-rights/trans-america
(17) As of June 2020 29 countries
recognised same-sex marriage and in 2020 51 countries/territories had a
right to change legal gender (with varying degrees of criteria)
Interestingly, during the
House of Lords debate, which proceeded the introduction of the Gender Recognition
Act in 2004 in Britain, members of the house were assured that it would
not lead to the right of all same-sex couples to get married, but only
apply to those who had legally acquired a new legal gender via a Gender
Recognition Certificate, which was anticipated to be about 5,000 people
at the time.
(19) “In 2015, a majority
of transgender endocrinology clinic patients had not undergone any type
of gender-affirmation surgery. Among those who did elect to have a surgery,
genital surgery or gonadectomy were uncommon.”
https://journals.aace.com/doi/abs/10.4158/EP161727.OR and from Written evidence submitted by GIRES to the Transgender Equality Inquiry in Britain. “These figures indicate that about 1% of the UK population, some 650,000 people, are likely to be gender incongruent to some degree. So far, only about 30,000 have sought medical help for gender dysphoria. Dutch research indicates that around a fifth of the 650,000 will do so”Medical intervention would include a lot more than genital surgeries so only some of the people who seek medical intervention get genital surgery.
(20) Charlie Clymer (now Charlotte), was criticised for bullying women on a feminist facebook page he was running, when he still identified as a man. The hashtag #StopClymer started to gain traction. Having lost his foothold as a feminist ally and leader he later “came-out” as a (trans)woman which gave him a new-found power to speak over women. He has worked for the Human Rights Campaign in the US and been supported by the likes of Chelsea Clinton, AOC and Kamala Harris. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O65OL7k0jXg&t=336s https://www.salon.com/2014/12/02/fast_company_promotes_live_chat_with_creepy_male_feminist/ https://wtop.com/dc/2018/06/dc-restaurant-expels-transgender-woman-who-used-womens-restroom/
(21) Your dating “preferences” are discriminatory by Riley J. Dennis https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2X-PgHSZh6U
Reply to it by Magdalene Berns here https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=eOqbwWymcTo&t=62s
(22) Are genital preferences transphobic? By Riley J. Dennis https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=k5GYlZKfBmI
His take on the difficulties of being a lesbian is worth a look as well, if only to see the brass neck of him https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H34a-EIzSIs
(23) Re: “Are genital preferences Transphobic?” Give it up, Riley! by Magdalen Berns https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_5FFGrGzJw&t=145s See also her comment on his reply https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZE-JoOQ9s7c&t=28s
(27) BelongTo definitions, page 29, in Supporting LGBT+ Young People Universal LGBT+ awareness and skills training for professionals working with young people in community or education settings. Handbook to accompany online training programme Funded by Department of Children and Youth Affairs , Government of Ireland, National Lottery, Pobal, and CDYSB.
(28) Review of the Gender
Recognition Act 2015 Report to the Minister for Employment Affairs and
Social Protection June 2018 Glossary of terms page 133
(34) LGB Alliance On twitter @ALLIANCELGB website https://lgballiance.org.uk/
(38) A good example of the clash of ideology can be seen in a recent interview with Bev Jackson, co-founder of the Gay Liberation Front and now spokesperson for the LGB Alliance, and Transactivist Benjamin Butterworth . Born in the wrong body clip https://twitter.com/OkBiology/status/1306635799765676032?s=19z Full piece https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zl9kiOGU6h0
(39) There is a certain amount
of backpeddling going on in the Gender Identity movement in Britain as
I write this, so someone has put together examples of the promotion of
the “born in the wrong body” idea.https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1309484475089383425.html
(40) Karl Marx The German Ideology https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch01b.htm