The concept of an identity as an unchosen, inherent characteristic is valuable, especially for oppressed groups. Transgenderism does not meet the criteria.
What is identity? How has it been used?
‘Identity’ comes from the Latin ‘idem’ meaning the same. It’s a characteristic a group of people all have in common. For subordinate groups this leads to them being ‘othered’ and oppressed by wider society, for example women, old people, people of a certain skin colour or people with disabilities. People have no choice about being in these groups: society can mostly tell who they are from their physical appearance or even from their name.
A bit of history
Back in ancient times conflicts over identities varied. Some societies such as the Greeks had wildy different conceptions of sexuality. The Roman empire tolerated and incorporated various religions until it became Christian in 313AD. In post-Reformation Europe people identified by their religious denomination – in the UK, Catholics were only allowed full rights to be MPs, soldiers, etc in 1829. Now we’re starting to see identity used with sexual preferences and even eating habits: vegetarians, pescatarians, vegans, and allergies and food intolerances can also come into it. It’s easy to get mixed up with ‘identity’.
The concept of identity gradually stretched to include factors that some people have some choice about, but not much: religion, for example. Someone raised in a religious society might have to exit their family and community in order to opt out of their religion. It’s possible for some adults but not for dependent women or children. People who leave their religion are often excoriated and abandoned by their family. But for many adults it is a choice to remain a member of a religion. Under multiculturalism in the UK discrimination against religious groups was made illegal, and they even obtained funding to help them establish themselves in the UK with all the traditions they brought from home.
There were huge problems with this approach. ‘Communities’ were falsely presented as monoliths, ‘community leaders’ were invariably old men, and horrendous human rights violations against women and lesbian and gay people were tolerated and implicitly validated ‘(it’s ok ‘cos it’s their culture, innit?’): FGM, honour killings, arranged marriages, cousin marriages etc. In response to the privilege awarded to such groups, others jumped on the bandwagon and counter-identities tried to claim the same, eg the BNP’s pursuit of white identity. Terrible abuses, mainly against women, were accepted and validated, creating a climate of even greater misogyny, the opposite of what these measures were designed to achieve.
During the fight for lesbian and gay rights, homosexuality was also seen as an identity to be fought for. Opinions are divided as to what degree same-sex preference is innate or a choice. If we did not live in such a heteronormative society we would not need these categories – the ancient Greeks did not have words for them. But since we do, bisexuality crept into the list, for people who prefer to choose partners of either sex. Identity politics was, for them and others, the best route to acceptance. It worked.
‘It worked for them, it can work for us’
This route was noted by the new rich white male transgender rights movement which, like the BNP, sought an identity which could harvest privilege, status and funding to turn back the clock to the glory time of white male supremacy. It was a clever undertaking, using all the money, power, influence, contacts, skill, technical expertise, secrecy and organisational capture which white men have always possessed and seen as their right. And it worked.
All patriarchies privilege, validate and cultivate male sexuality and take it far more seriously than anyone else’s. What better idea than to take a common sexual fetish (cross-dressing), plant it deep in the rich soil of neoliberal capitalism so that the huge corporations now running the world will support it, water it with brotherhood, injured innocence and dupers’ delight, and claim for it the rights of an oppressed minority? The fact that fetishised sex, tied as it is to one of our most fundamental survival instincts, is deeply addictive, made the idea even more attractive.
The green shoots were already there: rich young men with more money than sense decided they were really women and could afford the cosmetic surgery and hormone treatments to make changes in their bodies. They were also influential enough for people to agree to call them ‘she’. For example, Jennifer Pritzker founded, endowed, chaired and promoted gender studies departments in universities to establish transgenderism as a ‘thing’, something worthy of academic study. Which of course it was, but not, as they thought, as a natural sexual phenomenon, but rather as a demonstration of the fightback power and creativity of the patriarchy (ironically not a subject studied in gender studies departments). The trans world has been built up so rapidly over the past 50 years that we can now speak realistically of the transgender industrial complex.
The pseudoscience around transgenderism was produced via dodgy statistics as exposed by Transgender Trend and others. Charities such as Stonewall, Amnesty, Mermaids, Gendered Intelligence have obtained massive government funding based on these specious trans rights claims, and generate yet more income via training public and private organisations to run ahead of the law and place trans rights at the heart of everyone’s agenda, from grandmothers to CEOs.
Big Pharma, surgeons, doctors, the counselling/psychotherapy industry and manufacturing industry have seen their coffers fill to bursting with profits made out of ‘transitioning’ and the market is predicted to grow rapidly over coming years. When people detransition, they need another set of drugs, counselling and products – what a goldmine!
History will view transgenderism as a profitable impossible belief used to oppress women and will categorise it, along with witchcraft and lobotomy, as a power trick, not an identity.
Transitioning is something you do
Transgender is clearly a behaviour not an identity. Changing your body and behaviour is something you do, an action, a behaviour. There is no more basis for claiming trans as an identity than, for example, claiming gun ownership as an identity. The US National Rifle Association represents gun owners and is entitled to do so, but does not claim that this ‘identity’ entitles them to special privileges even though gun owners are more likely to die than non-gun owners. Gun ownership is a choice, and changing your body is also a choice.
Trans is a behaviour, often addictive to the many men who have been secretly cross-dressing for years. It’s a (not necessarily totally conscious) choice to act ‘feminine’, to work on perfecting your act, and an opportunity (a fun male power trip) to ask, influence, persuade, induce, force or compel others to accept and comply. Women particularly are punished when we refuse to comply. Transgenderism piggybacks on our convention of calling people who have achieved a certain level in education ‘Doctor’ or ‘Professor’ and takes it to a whole other level. To force women to agree to refer to a feminised man as ‘she’ is to make us complicit in the theft of our own identity. We respectfully decline.
Claims that even tiny children have ‘gender dysphoria’ are unprovable since we cannot see into their heads. A dislike for ‘own-sex’ behaviours would only be observable in a sex-stereotyped environment which is inherently unsuitable for children. Claims that your son or daughter is really the opposite sex are more likely to stem from Muenchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy than from reality.
Reasons to ‘transition’
Transgenderism offers an escape from who you currently are, the persona you have built in society. It puts the rest of your life on hold: relationships are up for renegotiation or termination, irksome responsibilities can be dropped, everything stops while you work, completely selfishly, on Who You Are. A wonderful new community of fellow trans people beckons, promising total acceptance, understanding and sympathy, all you have ever looked for in your social life.
Changing ‘gender’ brings attention, status, privilege and wealth. It enables undistinguished men to obtain positions and prizes in fields formerly reserved for women on the basis of our unfair exclusion or victimisation owing to physical weakness. But in the longer term detransitioners (who have often made painful, harmful and irreversible changes to their bodies) increasingly find that the magic wears off, the unicorn flies away, the rainbow fades. And then your rainbow community turns ugly against you and you realise they only wanted you while you were living the same lie they are.
Problems with transitioning
The problems are many, the top few probably being:
Children, especially lesbian and autistic girls, are persuaded they may be trans and are prescribed puberty blockers which make them infertile. Many go on to male hormones and breast removal surgery which they may later regret. Some detransition. Women’s hospital wards, prisons, changing rooms, organisations, scholarships, roles, etc, all of which were designated women-only because of male violence against or oppression of women, become mixed spaces and men effectively take them over, making life harder and more danagerous for the women who use them. Women’s sport is invaded by men who, having gone through puberty and training as a male, win every time. Male violent crime is recorded as female, which will eventually distort the crime stats to invisiblise violence against women. Males in female prisons have sexually violated fellow-prisoners. I could go on at length, but please see Transgender Trend, OBJECT, Fair Play for Women, Peak Trans,
The deceptions wrought by the trans wizards and their transactivist thugs are being exposed by overworked, underpaid women who add this unpaid task to their daily grind of paid work, care work and house work.
Because so many people have been doxxed and ejected from their livelihoods by organisations spineless enough to listen to transactivist social media pile-ons, it is mainly older women no longer dependent on a work income who dare to speak up, and they (we) are treated appallingly with all the combined sexism and ageism men can muster.
Yet we have banded together, resisted the violence, threats of violence (sexual and other), death threats, doxxing etc and have successfully challenged the fakery that this movement, with all its billions, has carefully and covertly created and spun as truth.
We at OBJECT are proud to be among them.
What needs to happen
As a society we urgently need to look at the degree of choice inherent in ‘identity’ and not let self-seeking privileged groups adopt one to obtain further advantage. No one chooses to be born a woman or to be born into a group punished by society for their skin colour. Rachel Dolezal’s attempt to ‘identify as black’ was rightly rejected since she can, unlike real black people, change her mind and cannot possibly know the problems into which she wishes to ‘identify’. To identify into an oppressed group, be it women or black people, is an insult to that group.
No one chooses to be born into a religion but as adults some choose to leave. Under heteronormativity many people will choose same-sex partners, reflecting not an identity but the need to resist oppressive social systems. An identity should be something you cannot change if it is to have any validity.
Many trans people appear to be deeply unhappy, if rates of detransition are anything to go by. Many gain attention, a career boost, a speaking platform, and many use it to escape from a normal humdrum life and responsibilities. Some sexual offenders use it to access women and some criminals use it to obtain an easier time in prison. Often the fun wears off later and they return to the sex category they were born into.
Transgenderism is a mens’ rights movement founded on profit, funded by billionaires and masquerading as grass roots minority. It seduces thousands of vulnerable people with its fake promises. It has more in common with a cult than a grass roots movement.
Do not be deceived by it.