Thoughts On Gendering

16 Aug

Back during the AIDS epidemic in the 1990’s, surgeons refused to perform cosmetic genital surgery on gay men for fear of HIV infection. This was the origin of “woman with a penis.”

And then what we got was all this cultural slippage, and ultimately the complete divorcing of any of this from medicine, which is still struggling about whether to include any of this in the DSM. The trans lobby would like to be out of the DSM but still get free hormones and surgeries on demand. They want people to be seen as victims of birth defects. Invisible ones. So there is a lot of push to confuse people into believing that they have intersex disorders, or that this is somehow related to endocrine disrupters. Also autism spectrum kids get dragged into this at times, which I suspect is because social conditioning does not set as well with such people.

Many people are invested deeply in attempting to find some kind of physical marker for transgenderism, but its current social morph, along with other sorts of identity politics, is largely Internet-driven. This is a social contagion.

Also there is this matter of having a generation of young people who are told that they are dopes and have no future. It drives tribalism. People are scared. They have every reason to be scared.

There is a sense, as well, in which it’s all the latest extension of the drug and body mod culture. For instance, I have heard repeatedly that testosterone works as an antidepressant on women.

Unfortunately for science, all this investment creates an enormous confirmation bias slant. Remember when Science was busy trying to determine differences between black brains and white brains? It’s rather like that. If your main tool is a hammer, things have a way of looking like nails. This serves to further muddy discussions of transgenderism.

The root problem is the inability of most people to recognize the coercive power of cultural sex stereotypes in which they are embedded. Someone said once that once you see it, it’s like putting on magic glasses and being able to see the aliens.

Men tend to be worse at this. It’s similar to how people not read as Black tend to be bad at seeing all the subtle racism at work in the culture.

But if you can’t see it, you are left sensing stuff in your life and environment that’s about gendering, but you can’t put words to it. Humans like narratives, they are important to us. So we create them, and when narratives become verboten, we create new narratives to cover for the forbidden narratives. But forbidden narratives do not become inoperative. If anything, they become more powerful when it is forbidden to discuss them.

Gendering is a forbidden narrative now. We are subjected constantly to the drumbeat of identity and its criticality. You are what you say you are, the opinions of others do not matter. Rather a convenient viewpoint, that, for those who don’t get much pushback about their self-professed declarations. People such as men.

3 Responses to “Thoughts On Gendering”

  1. lovetruthcourage 2017/08/16 at 11:19 pm #

    Yes, XY men get to define everything in the world, including women. Identifying doesn’t matter as much as how one is identified by others. It’s the determinations of others driving the discrimination, not self proclamations. This would seem a rather obvious point.


    • Miep 2017/08/16 at 11:28 pm #

      People who are genuinely made uncomfortable by gender-bending tend to be driven by homophobia. This is a real form of discrimination and it is frustrating that it is so frequently misnamed.

      Women being afraid of men who say they identify as women are not being homophobic. They are expressing a healthy concern about respect for social and sexual boundaries.

      If a person has been medically altered and acknowledges their true sex and is discriminated against based on this alteration, this could be considered “transphobia.” But you can’t have phobias about abstractions.


      • lovetruthcourage 2017/08/17 at 11:46 am #

        Agreed, well stated.


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