auntysarah: (Default)
There are certain people out there in Internet-land who spend much of their time writing very unpleasant things about trans people, usually trans women. They tend to come from the same sort of ideological background as Julie Bindel, where trans people represent an obstruction on the road to a kind of "Soviet Town Planner" vision of how the multi-faceted thing we call gender should exist in society.

In this vision of the world, the elite of a decadent society wield a bankrupt ideology in order to retain the status-quo, thus preventing underclass from taking their rightful place in society. There's pretty much a direct mapping:

Soviet ideology
transphobic feminist
The elite
The bourgeoisie
Bankrupt ideology
The proletariat

The allegory continues. The existing system must be overturned in order to realise an egalitarian alternative. Anything that stands in the way of such a goal, or appears to support the existing system, is counter-revolutionary and almost certainly a tool of the oppressors. Sadly, the would-be-liberators end up being "just like the old boss", as The Who might say, replacing one elite willing to resort to very unpleasant lengths to enforce their orthodoxy with another, which is often even more brutal and oppressive with what went before.

In the cold-war Soviet world, everyone got to live the same grey identikit life, devoid of any form of cultural expression which wasn't ideologically pure and officially sanctioned. Individualism was regarded as something very suspect and the true believers in the revolution ensured an eye was kept on anyone who might be "dangerous". If they presented too much of a problem, they were to be branded enemies of the people, disgraced in show trials where they were revealed as agents of capitalism, before being "dealt with" more permanently.

In the transphobic radfem dystopia, everyone will adopt the same vaguely masculine flavour of androgyny. Personal expression, especially when it comes to ones sex life, must be of a strictly approved type (any form of kink, for example, is right out - indeed, it would be better is people refrained from sex for anything other than procreation at all, and they certainly should try to avoid enjoying it. Bisexuality is a great evil which must be stamped out). Bodily autonomy is problematic, as it has traditionally been used to keep women down, so your hair gets to be regulation length, you don't get to do piercings, cosmetic surgery is pretty much high treason, and so on.

Trans people represent a fundamental problem in this world, so we have to be explained away. Either we are deluded dupes of the medical industry (the Bindel view), or we are infiltrators of the patriarchy (the Janice Raymond view).

The people who hold these views tend to end up being quite appallingly unpleasant to trans-people (and queer people, the kink community, sex workers, all women who don't share the same cultural background as these "theorists", which is overwhelmingly middle-class and white anglo-saxon, etc.). One can't expose oneself to trans-feminist thought for long without coming across these people and their vitriol.

I thought I'd mostly become immune to it. They tend to trot out the same stuff all the time anyway, and there's an expectation that they're going to be gratuitously offensive. However, what I read earlier today represented a low I hadn't seen before, and made me feel physically sick.

On the f-word blog, a blog for "contemporary UK feminism", an article was posted about Thursday's Transgender Day of Remembrance. This is the day each year when trans people remember those who have lost their lives simply because they were trans. This includes the ones whose names we know, and the countless ones who died in obscurity, murdered at the hands of someone who decided they were going to "teach them a lesson", or through medical neglect, or at their own hands, unable to cope with their gender dysphoria, isolation, or the stares and abuse that can be relentless for some trans people. It's a day for mourning and remembrance, a day for reflection, a day for remembering our dead.

The first comment on that blog entry was from one of the people I talk about above - a prolific transphobic Internet troll who goes by the name of "m Andrea". You don't have to google for long to find some of her worst excesses.

This was her Westboro Baptist Church-style response to a post made in memory of people who were brutally murdered because of who they are:

Normally, we consider people who use their emotions in place of reason to be utter fucking morons.

The basic premise of transgender ideology is that girl and boy brains exist, and are different from each other. Girl brains luv pink, and are rilly soft and gentle. Boy brains luv blue, and are rilly hard and aggressive.

The basic premise of feminist ideology is that no such difference exists. Oops, we have a discreptancy!

Since some women are quite the aggressive fuck, they must be a boy. Therefore, they are transgendered. Amazingly enough, wanting a penis is not required for women to be an aggressive fuck, so something is quite illogical regarding your theory.

Perhaps insanity is the answer.

That dogmatic adherence to an ideology can lead someone into a position where they abandon the last vestiges of their basic humanity comes as no shock - history has proven time and time again that humans are more than capable of this. Seeing it like that still makes me feel sick though.


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