“One woman warning you about a creepy dude and a dozen other women chiming in with their own stories is our version of locker room talk.” Caitlin Kelly
reposted from https://www.facebook.com/radfemsca
So I wrote a story, “Men Need Sex.” I started with the mistaken, but wide-spread, belief that men need sex (PIV). Mistaken because, unlike food, water, and oxygen, without sex, you don’t die. Then, ‘inspired’ by Roger Elliott, I thought, ‘What if?’ What if men really did die if they didn’t get sex. I postulated contagion, perhaps social. Then I postulated a shortening incubation period (between belief, not getting sex, and suicide). And I added the belief that men are entitled to get what they need, which ramped up rape and, consequently, women’s self-quarantine (after begging, to no avail, for stricter gun laws and a curfew for men). I ended the story with something like ‘And then the women just … waited.’
The SciPhi Journal rejected it. Which was disappointing, because I thought the story was clearly sf with a philosophical element (“As its primary mission, SPJ wishes to provide a platform for idea-driven fiction, as opposed to the character-driven mode that has come to predominate speculative fiction”). Future Fire also rejected it, which was also disappointing, because they focus on feminist sf. But what I want to focus on is the first rejection because it came with the explanation that my story “reads as a fully seriously intended apology of gendercide.”
How was what I described gendercide? The women didn’t kill the men; they just waited for them to kill themselves. Yes, they withheld sex, but if you’ll die without food and I refuse to give you food, am I killing you? Perhaps. The philosophical community has not yet come to a consensus on that; it’s called the passive euthanasia vs. active euthanasia debate (and the SciPhi editor should have been well aware of that debate).
Framed another way, if you’ll die without being able to hurt someone, and no one steps forward to be hurt, are we all killing you? Not at all clear. That’s called the Good Samaritan debate (and again, the SciPhi editor should have been well aware of it), often illustrated by the scenario of a drowning child: if the passerby is a competent swimmer, then yes, she has a duty to rescue, but if the passerby cannot swim, and the rescue puts her own life at risk, then no, she has no duty to rescue. The essential question is ‘On what grounds would one have a duty to sacrifice oneself for another?’
Does intercourse put a woman’s life at risk? If she has no contraception and no abortion, that is, if she’s forced to become pregnant and then doesn’t miscarry, well, maybe. It is not uncommon for a woman to die giving birth. At a minimum, there is a clear risk to her health: high blood pressure, diabetes, anemia, stroke, cardiac arrest. Perhaps the SciPhi editor is unaware of the health risks of pregnancy and childbirth…
But even with contraception and abortion … why is she obligated to allow herself to be hurt (yes, men, sexual intercourse against our will, absent our desire, hurts) (maybe that’s what the SciPhi guy didn’t get?) so that the man will live? If it’s a one-time thing, and the man in question is a good man (yes, that would figure into my deliberation), okay, maybe many of us would, and should, say yes. Ten minutes, in and out, go on, live.
But if it’s an ongoing thing, like the provision of food (which is what my story suggests), then the scenario would be very much like one sex, male, enslaving another, female; men imprisoning women to ensure continued sexual access and, therefore, their continued existence.
All that aside, the editor said “Art is free, and I won’t criticise any apology of anything.” Okay, then, an apology for gendercide, should that have been what my story was about, would have been okay. “However,” he continued, “all pieces of writing for SPJ must have at least a grain of plausibility.” When I pointed out that I’d referenced Elliot Rodger and Alex Minassian, he said he hadn’t heard of either one. What? What? (I keep forgetting that since words like sexism and misogyny aren’t used on primetime tv or in mainstream news, most people [in the U.S. and Canada, at least, because their entire worldview is formed by those two media] `aren’t familiar with the concepts. And it keeps shocking me when I remember that. But wait, weren’t both Rodger and Minassian reported in mainstream news?) My guess is the editor just didn’t read my story very carefully. (Both Rodger and Minassian were referenced in footnotes.) And why might that be? Because … oh, right. It was written by a woman.
He went on to say “As a 100% gay male, I can assure you that your statements about ALL men are quite off the mark …” Quite apart from the fact that any statements I made about ALL men were in the context of the story, a fiction, I never made any statements about ALL men; in fact, I quite deliberately say “Of course not all men” at one point.
“On the other hand,” he continued, “the funny notion implied in your story that women don’t need sex is also wrong”— oh do tell, please, go ahead and mansplain women’s sexuality to me.
“Myself and quite a few of my gay male friends have had experiences of being sexually harassed by women. Therefore, women seem to need sex as well.” Therefore? Okay, at this point, I’m thinking the editor of a philosophical science fiction journal doesn’t have a philosophy degree.
In a subsequent email (because yes, I responded to his rejection letter, refuting his points; I’m tired of just letting these things happen without challenge), he said “At any case, there is too much hate shown by the narrator to be humanely appealing.” Need I point out all the sf in which male narrators show too much hate of women to be humanely appealing? (Yes, men, any time you write a story or novel in which the males subordinate or sexualize the females, you’re expressing hatred of women.)
And, in yet another email, he said “There is no lack of publishing venues that would gladly accept any kind of male-bashing. SPJ is not one of them.”
To which I replied, “It’s just … disappointing that you didn’t see that the story is actually an argument against male entitlement and an exposé of, and a cautionary tale about, toxic masculinity.”
video of “Toys Make Us” from Chris Wind’s album “ProVocative”
Let’s say we are born with a gender identity. Either
(1) it isn’t a binary, in which case there’s no need to change your sex to attain some sort of ‘fit’
(2) it is binary, but it doesn’t necessarily or always align with sex, in which case again there’s no need to change your sex, or
(3) it is binary and it does align with sex, in which case one couldn’t possibly feel a mismatch—feeling a mismatch would just prove that (2) is the case.
I suppose one could say that for 99%, it is aligned, and those who feel a mismatch are anomalies, but look around at all the women who are not feminine. Are we all anomalies? If so, then we’re not really anomalies, are we. (And even if we are, so what? How does that necessitate chemical or surgical transformation?)
“If you cannot define women, then you cannot defend them.”
“Its purpose [meeting of Leeds City Council] was not to tell Trans people what is best for them, but to tell politicians and lawmakers what is best for women.”
“And I’ve had enough.”
“So to be clear: men in this city can access a woman’s changing facility, toilet, leisure facility or support group or service – anywhere they are vulnerable, traumatised, undressed or asleep – because men might at some point feel like they are something which the council says is indefinable, but might mean he once wore something which may or may not be something a woman might also wear.”
“… several men out on the street openly watching pornography in their cars as women stumbled to them to be used and discarded for a fiver. During the day I was approached by punters three times in 10 minutes while simply standing by a car for some fresh air at 2pm. We are spending hundreds of thousands of pounds so men can buy the addicted bodies of the most vulnerable women in the city.”
“I’m often asked how I would feel if I was born in the wrong body. And I say, I’ve been feeling like that every single day for as long as I can remember. You only have to go into a shop, turn on the TV, open a magazine, click on the internet and women are assaulted with GET A BIKINI BODY, 12 WEEKS UNTIL YOUR CHRISTMAS PARTY BODY, GET THE BODY YOU DREAM OF, THE BODY OF SOMEONE 20 YEARS YOUNGER, THE BODY YOU DESERVE. Botox, surgery, hair removal, Photoshop, permanent makeup, designer vagina. We get it.”
“I’m truly sorry for any man who feels imprisoned and tortured by masculinity. But that is something for men to deconstruct, to dismantle and to overthrow. … But it is not the moral duty of women to facilitate that.
Read the whole thing here.
Misogyny is a simple and clear case of psychological projection, a defence mechanism whereby one denies the existence of a quality in oneself and instead attributes it to the other—’it’s not me, it’s you’. Men hate that they want us, that their thought, their behavior, is so overwhelmingly and relentlessly occupied with wanting us. Instead of identifying themselves as the source of the sexual attraction (the problem—they are sexually attracted), they identify women as the source (the problem—they are sexually attracting). And so they hate us, they hurt and kill us. When the rational thing would be to hate themselves, hurt and kill themselves. Actually, no, the rational thing would be to simply take the drugs that reduce their desire so it’s not overwhelming and relentless.
And what do they do instead? Take drugs that increase their desire. (Who was it who said they were the rational ones?) Because the greater their sexual desire, the more manly they are. But the greater their sexual desire, the more they hate us. So, the more manly they are, the more they hate us. Despite the faulty logic, that rings true: only wusses actually like women. That is to say, it accurately reflects the psychopathic notion of manliness. (And that would be another rational thing to do: reject the notion of manliness.)
Transsexualism is a problem only because sexism is a problem. (Transgenderism is no problem at all: females have been wearing pants and so on for ages, and there’s nothing preventing males from wearing dresses and so on.)
If being female didn’t put people at greater risk of sexual assault from males, it wouldn’t matter whether male-bodied people were placed in women’s shelters and women’s prisons or allowed in women’s washrooms and change rooms. In fact, there wouldn’t need to be women’s shelters and separate prisons, washrooms, and changerooms. (Although there could be, for reasons other than fear of violence: there could be male, female, and mixed sex facilities across the board.) There may not even be a need for sex-segregated services; we would need only sex-tailored services.
If being female-bodied didn’t disadvantage athletes for most sports (as we have come to know them), it wouldn’t matter whether they had to compete against male-bodied people. In fact, there wouldn’t need to be sex-segregated sports.
If being female didn’t mean unjustified subordinate treatment, there would be no need for compensatory programs or data collection to monitor such treatment. And so it wouldn’t matter if male-bodied people skewed or eliminated such data collection (by making it illegal to record sex) or diminished the funding for such programs (should that be a consequence for refusing to serve male-bodied people).
In short, if there were no sexism, it wouldn’t matter whether males said they were females and females said they were males. Just as it doesn’t matter whether brown-haired people said they were red-haired (except maybe to a psychologist interested in delusion). (It would be a problem, however, if white-skinned people claimed to be black-skinned, because racism is a problem.)
Further, to the extent that transsexualism involves transgenderism, it depends on sexism. If not for sexism, there would be no need to change sex in order to change gender. If not for sexism, there would be no gender: the various attributes that are grouped together and then aligned with one sex or the other would be just individual attributes, as likely to be present in, or desired by, any given male as any given female.
 But there is sexism, so it does matter. By identifying themselves as female, and demanding access to women-only services and activities, ‘transwomen’ are oblivious not only to biological reality, but also to sexism. Or perhaps they are simply insensitive to women’s fears (which in itself suggests that they are not women, but are, in fact, still men). Because how can they not understand that someone with male levels of testosterone and male muscle mass is unwelcome in places where women would be vulnerable to their propensity to violence? Especially since there is much evidence showing that males prone to violence against women see nothing wrong with using deceit to gain access to women, and no evidence that males who are in various degrees of transformation are any less violent. (Of course ‘transwomen’ are also at risk of men’s violence, just as effeminate men have always been, but that’s a problem that men, not women, need to solve.)
So … until sexism has been eradicated from our society, ‘transwomen’ will just have to abstain from sex-segregated sports and wax their own balls (or, here’s an idea, go to waxing clinic that has personnel with experience waxing testicles—that is, a men’s waxing clinic). Is that too much to ask?
As for public restrooms and change rooms, if ‘transwomen’ are afraid to continue using the men’s rooms, they should lobby for trans’ rooms, not the right to use women’s rooms. As for prisons, I suppose ‘transwomen’ could lobby for separate trans facilities within men’s prisons.
guest post by Jass Richards
So when I was in the Louvre, a long time ago, looking at all those famous paintings, I was struck by how few of the women were able to keep their clothes on. From peasants to goddesses, every one of them was sporting not just an off-the-shoulder look, but a pulled-down-to-the-waist look. Breast after breast after breast was bared — in the most inappropriate contexts. For example, in “The Sacrifice of Iphigenia” by … somebody … there are lots of them … apparently it’s a common theme, women getting sacrificed for others … Iphigenia is “sacrificed” in order to make the wind go in the right direction so her father can get to his precious little war and — why the hell is she topless at the moment of her death?
And at some famous theatre, in Vienna I think, I noticed, at first with delight, that the walls were covered with women — but again, every one of them had that negligee-half-off look. Then I noticed they were always in pairs, always two women together, and I thought for a second, “Hey!” But then I realized that every second panel featured the sculpted head of some distinguished person, some male person. So you have distinguished male head, two pairs of breasts, distinguished male head, two pairs of breasts …
It finally dawned on me when I was in Amsterdam. One day I was in the red light district looking at all the men gawking at the famous window displays and the next day I was in the Rijksmuseum looking at a painting called “The Drawing Room” — in which a bunch of men are gawking at a nude model. Being an artist was just an excuse to see women’s naked bodies. The drawing room legitimized voyeurism. So the masters are just peeping toms, art is little more than thinly veiled porn, and the history of art, like everything else, boils down to the history of men seeing women as sex objects.