Wednesday, September 07, 2016

News Flash: Men Cannot Menstruate

   Total number of men who menstruate: 0.00.
   As I've said before: when RedState starts being right about things, you know stuff has gotten completely out of hand.
   All of this nonsense really comes to nothing more than an attempt to change the meaning of words. 'Man' does not and has never meant masculine person. 'Woman' does not and has never meant feminine person. 'Man' means adult male human; 'woman' means adult female human. No males menstruate. Therefore no men menstruate. Convincing people to change the meanings of words does not change the facts. If the PCs convince enough people to start using 'man' and 'woman' differently, it will not turn any females into men, nor will it turn any men into females. If I convince you to start using the word 'dog' to mean 'cat', it will not turn dogs into cats. Facts don't care about words.
   Even places like Reason have begun to pay lip service to this insanity. God help us if places like RedState are left as the last defenders of sanity...


Anonymous John Plato said...

The window for embracing an alternative vocabulary for discussing and thinking about these issues is closing, and without a better, more accurate vocabulary, the whole fight is lost.

For instance, I think "gender dysphoric" is a decent candidate for replacing the word "trans". "Gender dysphoric men" would be biological males who don't want to be men. This avoids the blurring of lines that the label "trans women" creates, and ends the ceding of the argument that the label "trans women" automatically entails.

I'm really surprised not to see more work on this front coming out of the right, since they have traditionally been so good at it, with terms like "death tax", "tax relief", "enhanced interrogation" and so many others. George Lakoff built a career pointing out how much better the right was at framing an issue and controlling vocabulary than the left.

So what happened? Even the Red State article embraces the term "trans community". I really haven't seen any organized attempt to create an alternative vocabulary at all, from either the right or from more traditional liberals who recoil at the left's recent decent into conceptual lunacy.

Lakoff often talks about hypocognition, a term from cognitive linguistics that describes the inability to communicate certain concepts because a language or culture has no words for them.

I think the right is suffering from something like hypocognition in this regard. They (and lots of others) thought they could dig in their heels on the terms "men" and "women", and that would be enough, that discussion never needed to go beyond reminding people there are only two sexes, and wishing you were the other doesn't change your biology.

So they didn't try to embrace alternative labels for gender dysphoric people and their issues, and have now been left behind, as the media have embraced the terms the modern left have given them to use.

The time for that strategy has passed. I hope to see more attempts from others to reclaim the language, even though I know these sorts of things are tough to do.

4:11 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Whoa, very astute, I say.

And good suggestion re: "gender dysphoric."

I was actually having vaguely similar but less articulate thoughts the other day, and my brain suggested "cross-gendered" to me. I don't think that would fly.

The right *is* pretty good at nefarious euphemisms...but it seems to me that the PC left leaves them in the dust... Or maybe it's just that the most relevant cultural institutions are controlled by liberals, and they will adopt PC terms but not conservative ones.

We seem to have replaced "global warming" with "climate change," per conservative's shorter, and that matters a lot for terminology...But it's just being used to mean "global warming." That is, the term was adopted, but not really the meaning...

Anyway, I kind of agree that the terminological window is closing...I was wondering the other day how long before the OED/OAD change the definitions of 'man'and 'woman'... It's crazy how much such terminological nonsense matters... If/when that happens, the claim will be that it's an indication that that's the way the facts have been all along...

4:19 PM  
Anonymous John Plato said...

I agree, the left really has far surpassed the right in language lawyering. I think each side accuses the other of being dark wizards at what they themselves are best at.

"Death panels" was a pretty good one, though. It singlehandedly vanquished a whole section of the Affordable Care Act that would have paid doctors to talk with patients about living wills and end-of-life options, potentially saving billions of dollars in unwanted medical care. So the right phrase at the right moment really can have an impact, even if delivered by a single individual.

The other candidate I like for replacing "transgender" is "anti-gender". It may be a bit more contentious, but it's also more accurate, since, as has been pointed out before, if you believe either sex can proclaim themselves either gender, the terms then have no meaning.

11:16 PM  

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