Sunday, September 30, 2018

Feminists Collide

                Have you heard of the term “Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist,” or TERF? It is at the heart of a battle between feminists who believe men who identify as women are actually women and should consequently be welcomed into the fold…so to speak…and those who strongly disagree with that inclusive view.
                According to a report by Inside Higher Ed (subscribe today, enter the keyword “dumb-ass” and receive a 25% discount!), TERFS believe that “the interests of cisgender women (those who are born with vaginas) don’t necessarily intersect with those of transgender women (primarily those born with penises).” Hmm. Moreover, this feminist sect believes that transgender women are incapable of fully comprehending womanhood for two simple reasons: one, they lived as men for at least part of their lives, and two, they will never experience biological femininity. (Those seem like solid points to me. I never thought I’d share a belief system with a radical feminist group)!
                Other feminists consider trans-exclusion to be a hateful fringe-feminist ideology. A representative of Indiana University’s Feminist Student Association told The College Fix that the organization does not support trans-exclusionary feminism, adding: “Feminism is for everyone. Gender is personal, and it is in opposition to our beliefs and goals to follow strict definitions of masculinity or femininity and gender.” Said representative did admit that group members are not “experts on the subject by any means,” but helpfully offered a definition from the Trevor Project that says that gender is “an idea created by society” that arbitrarily “tells us what certain genders are ‘supposed’ to be like.”
                That “definition” is inarguably the opposite of the truth. Gender is not an “idea” created by society. Society is created by genders. Two of them, to be exact.
                The editor-in-chief of UCLA’s “FEM” newsmagazine told The Fix that they don’t support TERF ideology. She exclaimed, “We oppose biological and gender essentialism.” She can oppose it, but that doesn’t make biological gender any less essential. It just makes her appear less essential—and less logical.
                The University of Pennsylvania’s “feminist literary magazine,” titled “The F-Word,” defines feminism as “respect for all individuals regardless of gender or sexual affiliation.” How nice! I’m sure that inclusiveness and respect extends to any political affiliation or ideology, too. Right?

                Oh, well. Who knew TERF wars could be so fun?!

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