About a year ago I read in The New Yorker an interesting piece about an internal battle within feminism between radical feminists and transgenderism.
It is worth the full read but essentially, some ‘RadFems’ do not accept that a man who ‘transitions’ to become ‘a woman’ is in fact a woman. They believe that as femininity is socially constructed anyway, one cannot be inherently female or a ‘woman trapped in a man’s body.’
The piece explains:
“In this view, gender is less an identity than a caste position. Anyone born a man retains male privilege in society; even if he chooses to live as a woman—and accept a correspondingly subordinate social position—the fact that he has a choice means that he can never understand what being a woman is really like. By extension, when trans women demand to be accepted as women they are simply exercising another form of male entitlement. All this enrages trans women and their allies, who point to the discrimination that trans people endure; although radical feminism is far from achieving all its goals, women have won far more formal equality than trans people have.”
On I plodded through this dirge, barely making head nor tail of it and thought, well nothing to worry about there. This transgenderism thing is so out there, there is no way it could go mainstream. Hah! How wrong I was.
You can barely swing a cat now before some person is claiming that they are ‘transitioning’ from one gender to another. Hell I would like to ‘transition’ to become a rich Saudi Princess but I doubt society is going to accommodate me on this, and make my perceived reality become actual reality, even though my middle-of-the roadness causes me intense anguish.
The piece sums up the RadFem position thus: “Radical feminists now find themselves in a position that few would have imagined when the conflict began: shunned as reactionaries on the wrong side of a sexual-rights issue. It is, to them, a baffling political inversion.”
And baffled is certainly what poor Germaine Greer looked like on Newsnight. She is now being No Platformed by a bunch of toddler/students I spoke about previously because she does not believe in her heart of hearts that a man who has transitioned to perceived womanhood is really a woman.
Note if you will that she is not seeking to prohibit these transitions (heaven forefend) and she will use the desired pronouns as a courtesy, but she still believes a spade is a spade and a woman is a woman. And for this she will by hanged high I can tell you by the much younger and spritely millennial feminists who will sweep all before them. According to them, she quite simply is a ‘dinosaur.’
It must be devastating for Greer to be painted as something akin to a conservative or a reactionary as The New Yorker says. She will now be told that she is ‘on the wrong side of history.’ Notice that this phrase is never a prelude to an actual argument – it is the argument! You are wrong and I am right so shut up.
This will be a fight to the death for Greer and the RadFems. There will only be one winner – and it will not be matriarchs of the feminists. They will be crushed, and we will be crushed and a lot of devastated parents and children who will have to accept that daddy is in fact a mummy will be crushed too. But no matter.
Greer is right of course on the underlying misogyny behind this. It seems to be a woman of influence as per Woman’s Hour or Glamour magazine you have to have been born a man. Those people with double XX chromosomes just do not cut the mustard anymore.
The feminists want more women in the boardroom. I’d settle for a woman to be Woman of the Year. That would be a start.