"Common Sense" is all too often little more than a substitute for ignorance and prejudice. It rejects the carefully thought-out argument for instant thoughtless reactions. It is usually wrong.
UnCommon Sense tries to look at issues from a more complex and considered point of view. "Common Sense" is simplistic, UnCommon Sense is deals with the the world as far more complex than many would have us believe.
Monday, 10 August 2015
UPDATED VERSION: The TERFs sink even lower...
OK, so this is the updated, revised and unabridged version of this blog post. It is being updated in response to feedback from some trans people who didn’t know what TERFs are. I have put my definition below but before getting to that I would like to comment on this. The fact that quite a few trans people don’t know about TERFs is, I believe, a positive sign. TERFs used to be everywhere and harassing and abusing any out trans person, especially on social media. Their aim of silencing trans people was working; trans people were threatened with abuse, doxxing and even violence. Now things are different; it is perfectly possible to be trans and not ever encounter a TERF, nope, not even a little one.
There are, I believe, a number of reasons for this. Firstly, TERFism is clearly failing. It always was a failed ideology but now it is failing to do what it set out to do which was, in Janice Rayomnd’s words to ensure that what she calls “transsexualism” (a delberately chosen term, designed to dehumanise - the corect term is “trans people”) is “morally mandated out of existence”. When Raymond wrote this incitement to bullying and hate crime in 1979, there were few out trans people. That is why she could get away with an incitement to hate crime and why TERFs could bully those few trans people who were around.
Secondly there are more of us now. As a result of their failed action and hate-crimes against trans people, lots and lots and lots of people have come out as trans. There must be at least a thousand more out trans people in the world than there were in 1979. So it is harder for the dwindling number of TERFs to harass and hassle every trans person. This is a good thing.
Thirdly, this bullying took the shape of using their greater socioeconomic positions to control the media narrative about trans people. Mainstream media discourse about trans people was, prior to 2008, pretty much controlled by the TERF point of view, with a complimentary contribution from their friends the right-wing psychologists. Trans people were pathologised, othered and positioned as “the problem”. We rarely got a look in. Now, newspapers like the Guardian regularly publish sympatheic articles about trans people.
So the TERF project, always nothing more than an abusing and hate-fliied mode of action, has descended into a ghastly and ghostly farce, a pale shadow of a pale shadow with senior TERFs running around in what can only be described as a flap, desperately digging up examples of supposed victimisation or silencing of their increasingly ridiculous narrative. Obviously we must not be complacent; TERFism is primarliy a mode of action, as I have established before, rather than a discourse or ideology; their aim is to harm trans people and will attempt to do so by covert means, we saw earlier in the year how TERF discourse has infected the Green Party, and there has been evidence in the past that it has infected the Labour Party also, this is why it is important that we maintain a strong trans presence in political parties. TERFism may appear dead but somewhere in a cesspit far removed from reality, it still rumbles like a grotesque creature from the underworld.
Anyway the first definition of TERF on Google, (thanks to Sahra Rae Taylor) is;
“Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist, that group of feminists that claims that trans women aren’t really women, as biological determinism is only a fallacy when used against them, not when they use it against others.” Anyway, on to the original blog post, hope it makes more sense now to everyone; "TERFs sink even lower" type of headline has become a regular response to whatever the TERFs have been up to in their action to harm trans people.
TERFs like to call themselves "gender critical" feminists, trying to promote the idea that they are interested in a kind of academic, open debate about trans people, and weaponising any attempt by trans people to oppose what they do, by pretending it is 'silencing'.
Well they have sunk to a new low by using one of their anonymous, coward, Twitter feeds to abuse and harass a disabled trans woman. Once again this exposes their true nature. They are not interested in any kind of open discussion or debate, that is just a cover.
It is a cover for action which includes harassment, abuse, stalking - including doxxing minors - and spreading deliberate misinformation about trans people. As I have said before, TERFism is a mode of action, it is nothing to do with being 'gender critical' it is everything to do with an obsessive, fanatical hatred of trans people and represents a determination to take action unto and including violence against trans people, including campaigning to have trans people's healthcare withdrawn and replaced with "talking therapies" which we know from the experience of people like Leelah Alcorn merely results in depressed and suicidal victims.
In short the TERFs are engaged in an assault on trans people and, and many of them have argued, they would like to see us dead, their only suggestion to deal with the 'problem' of trans people - "talking therapies", or morally mandating us out of existence - is in effect an extermination strategy. This kind of abuse and harassment is indicative of this.