Wednesday, September 14, 2016

NRO: The Left Is Weaponizing Sports

  The details here aren't that great, but I agree with the general sentiment. I think it's alarming that the NCAA has decided to move games out of North Carolina over the transgender bathroom (and other facilities) bill. Not because I'm sure what I think about it--I'm not. But, rather, because North Carolina's position is perfectly reasonable. It might not be optimal, and I certainly have doubts about it, but it is not obviously bigoted. All it does is add the force of law to the long-standing and almost-universally-supported practice of segregating public restrooms, locker rooms etc. by sex. Most people have assumed that this already was a law. If one side is crazy here, it's the other side, the side that's pretending that the theory of trangenderism that burst onto the scene two years ago, which makes little sense, and which is not in accordance with the best-available psychological evidence is so obviously true that only bigots can oppose it. The NCAA has no earthly business sticking its nose into this issue...and on the side that makes far less sense to boot. This is not segregation of water fountains by race. This is about adding the force of law to a system that everybody already assumed had the force of law...and doing so on the basis of half-baked theories and quarter-baked concepts (like "gender identity") that can't stand up to ten minutes of sustained and reasonably objective thought.. the NCAA planning to boycott every state that deviates from whatever trendy PC policy proposal that might crop up from here on out? Because we should all be alarmed if organizations that are supposed to be completely non-political start weighing in so readily and irrationally on policy disagreements...especially by punishing any and all dissent. And, of course, it will always be on the one side, and never on the other...
   Again, my current view is that NC might ought to have left the law out of it...however...there is no such thing as "gender identity"--it's a deeply confused, nearly-incoherent concept (or pseudo-concept). And our long-standing policy is to segregate public restrooms and locker rooms by sex. (Note: it's not actually right to say "biological sex," since that's the only kind of sex there is...) It's the left that's aiming for massive social change, not North Carolina. North Carolina's move can plausibly be characterized as conservative (in the good sense of defending the status quo at least long enough for the issue to be discussed rationally.) It is utterly irrational for the NCAA--which has no idea what it's talking about on this issue--to punish NC for failing to adopt a far-left position that involves abandonment of a long-established institution on the basis of an incoherent theory backed by virtually no evidence. I suppose the NCAA might argue that presumption goes to the status quo ante...but it's not completely clear what should count as the status quo ante here. Sure, NC made move by passing the law...but it passed a law in response to...let's face facts...a bizarre new trend that has led many men to want to use women's facilities. NC can be seen as trying to protect the normal, universally-accepted (and plausibly important and just) system with the law. Some law-makers probably had bad motives...but the law isn't inherently bigoted nor obviously wrong. More importantly: if I thought the NCAA had thought this through and understood the issues and come down against NC on the basis of a disagreement about what constituted the status quo, that would be one thing. But I don't think there's any chance at all that's true. Rather, I think that the cultural tide is now moving so powerfully in the direction of a kind of loony version of liberalism and identity politics that hopping on every such band wagon is now what counts as cultural neutrality.
   We do not want the NCAA ending up as a de facto policy-making organization. But that's exactly what's going to happen if this keeps up. No state is going to stand up against pressure like this for long. Will the NCAA back off in the unlikely event that the courts rule in NC's favor? Well, it's willing to punish NC with no legal ruling in place, so I'm doubtful that a legal victory will matter to them.


Blogger Dark Avenger said...

Winston, it's the free market at work. N.C. is perfectly free to make what laws they choose to pass and sign into law, and the NCAA, a private organization is free to make what decisions they think will increase their bottom line.

There have been no reports that this law was passed in response to a problem, it was an ideological anodyne,at best, or a form of grandstanding at wor

I always find it hilariously amusing when conservatives get shortchanged in the free market.

8:51 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

I'm inclined to agree, and I almost put in an aside about that. But I'm not sure it's that simple. First, I'm pretty damn sure that the NCAA would not lose any money by holding games in NC, so I'm pretty sure that there was something else at work there. And that's the really troublesome/sinister possibility. If it *were* financial, I'd be way less concerned.

Second, I'd also be worried if, say, the NCAA or some similar organization were pulling out of a state because, say, it pulled out of a state in order to punish it for some equally controversial policy on the other side--say, because a state had same-sex marriage (imagining that that were still as controversial as it was a couple of years back.)

I'd just rather the NCAA and similar organizations keep out of this while the issues are unsettled.

Of course that's part of the problem: one side in the disagreement has declared the issue settled...

9:01 PM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

First, I'm pretty damn sure that the NCAA would not lose any money by holding games in NC.

Really? What if some of the players refuse to play in NC?

Also, the law in question overrides not just bathroom laws, but local minimum wage laws as well.

The National Basketball Association has moved its 2017 All-Star game and associated festivities from Charlotte after the General Assembly refused to repeal or significantly modify HB2, the notorious law that codifies bigotry in the guise of protecting women and children against a threat so imminent that it has never once happened.

In addition to forbidding anyone from using a restroom that doesn’t match the gender listed on the individual’s birth certificate, HB2 forbids local minimum-wage and anti-discrimination laws. As originally passed, it also blocked state lawsuits over discrimination, but that was changed later.

The NBA apparently saw through this underwhelming adjustment and made good on their threat to move the game.

“While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2,” the league said in a statement Thursday.

“As a member of the NBA family and as a gay man, I’m extremely proud to see the NBA take initiative and move the All-Star Game from North Carolina,” said Jason Collins, the first openly gay NBA player, in a statement.

“Their decision is an extremely poignant one and shows that discrimination of any kind is not welcome in sports and is not acceptable in any part of our society. The NBA has set the best kind of example and precedent moving forward for all to follow.”

The impact of the NBA action comes atop an estimated $329 million in business the state has already lost since HB2 was passed during a special session early this year. Entertainers, most notably Bruce Springsteen, have canceled appearances and companies have refused to either expand or locate in the state.

If the law were just regardingwho uses what bathroom that would be one thing. But disallowing minimum wage increases? Not quite fair to the citizens of Charrlotte or any other N.C. municipality that wants to such a law.

Bigotry isn't selling these days.

But, hey, they got on top of this transgender thing before it destroyed the traditional Sourhern values of hospitality and gentility in N.C.

3:51 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

> Really? What if some of the players refuse to play in NC?

*What if?* is kind of grasping at straws, don't you think?

Still, I *had* forgotten about all the other shit in that bill. I agree that it's a crap bill overall, and am not defending the anti-minimum-wage stuff.

I'm not even sure that the restroom stuff is right.

I just don't want the NCAA jumping in on a social/political issue like this one. Though, again, it's not actual restroom policy that interests me so much. I'm not sure what the right policy is. I'm concerned about the fact that a new set of policies are being rammed down the country's throat on the basis of a false (and, in fact, largely incoherent) theory about transgenderism...and serious public discussion of the theory has basically been declared off-limits because if you disagree with the theory you're a bigot.

That's crazy, self-sealing stuff, man.

Nobody'd ever let the right get away with such shit--and rightly so. If religious bakers had pleaded infallible knowledge of something inside them that meant that they didn't have to sell wedding cakes to people getting gay-married, they'd have been laughed out of court...or into jail...

8:11 AM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

You forget the case of Kim Davis, Winston. She used her Christian faith as an excuse for not doing her stated job duties as the County Clerk in Kentucky.

The restroom bill rests on a false basis, that somehow letting transgendered people use restrooms will lead to transmen using woman's restrooms and therefore somehow endangering little girls who use the same facilities. That there isn't an iota of evidence that this has ever happened or will ever happen.

Do you agree that the bill addresses a non-problem?

As my mother used to say, there is a price for everything. And as they say around here, if you don't like the stink, don't stir the shit.

10:28 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

> You forget the case of Kim Davis, Winston. She used her Christian faith as an excuse for not doing her stated job duties as the County Clerk in Kentucky.

Wait...I'm missing the analogy...what am I not seeing? If anything, doesn't that support what I said? That conservatives couldn't get away with something like that?

Davis, though, was a public official, so that doesn't seem like a good case to me even if it does seem to support my point.

Is it a response to a non-problem? Honestly, I don't know. This is the sort of thing I want there to be an honest public discussion about. I've seen long lists of incidents in which males who seem to be classifiable as transgendered were up to shenanigans in e.g. dressing rooms...but there will *inevitably* be some incidents. The questions are: how common is it? And is there any predisposition among the relevant population to do that?

I'm completely willing to accept evidence that says that there's no particular predisposition to do such things...but two points:

First, this is exactly the kind of thing I've come to distrust the media and many parts of academia with respect to. I *expect* them to say whatever will support the bullshit left-liberal party line. And I didn't make this worry up...I used to scoff at it. But the concern seemed to force itself on my after long experience. Which is not to say that I'm right about it, just that I don't think I'm being dishonest about it.

Second, even a normal male tendency to hassle women would be enough to make this bathroom stuff a problem. So, unless we're going to use these arguments to completely give up sex-segregation in all forms (something that I'm willing to consider, but am skeptical about), I'm inclined to think that a normal male degree is low enough.

My *inclination* is to suspect that, in the long run, letting some men into women's facilities will be the best option. I'm really just pissed off about (a) the bad theory that's being pushed, (b) the fact that it IS being pushed, (c) the fact that all disagreement and discussion are deemed "transophobic", and hence (d) that we're kind of being sold a pig in a poke.

Even if this policy turns out to be right, it's a terrible precedent to set about public decision-making. Or so I think.

11:12 AM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

Well, Winston, this is easily falsifiable. Were there any cases of trans men bothering women and/or girls in a woman's bathroom before the bill was passed?

Now, I may be wrong and proven foolish by the facts, but, based on my admittedly imperfect understanding of human behavior and psychology, the answer to the questions is probably no.

Also, you have do wonder why it was passed so quickly:

What happened in North Carolina could be the deadly recipe that helps these other discriminatory bills actually make it across the finish line. Indeed, the rushed special session was a perfect recipe for avoiding all of the various resistance that has held back these bills from even being considered in previous years.
For example, the bill’s language was only made public mere minutes before it was considered. The committee first tasked with voting on it had to request to even have five minutes to read it. There was only a total of 30 minutes of public comment, meaning there was basically no opportunity for public input. (Polling showed that there was bipartisan opposition across the state to overturning Charlotte’s ordinance.)

Maybe because there's no there there?

But you read the NRO, and your bullshit detector mysteriously fails to work.. I wonder why.

1:26 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Oh,'re a dude who's been limping along with virtually no bullshit detector at, kettle, all that sort of thing... Though, in your case, I *don't* wonder why...I think you and I both know that *your* bullshit detector is liberal-issue and only works in one direction...

Still, it's kinda good to know all that stuff. I don't trust the NC GOP any farther than I could throw the whole f*cking lot--they're a bad bunch, or many are, anyway. The spirit of Jesse Helms still moves in them, IMO.

Finally, you presuppose that HB2 must be a response to men having bothered women in bathrooms. I don't see that. It was a response to the Charlotte ordinance (7056?). I'm inclined against HB2, as I've said, though I'm not sure. I do think that it's in the realm of reason, given the actual facts--we don't know what transgenderism is, the man-in-a-woman's-body theory is not true (to the extent that it can be made sense of at all), the transgenderism fad is increasing the number of people who are at issue, thus making the restroom / locker room stuff more salient... Given that the MiaWB theory isnt' true, and evidence suggests that Blanchard's theory may be true instead (autogynophilia is a sexual fetish), the prevailing view on the left seems to be asking (or telling) us that we must participate in other people's sexual fetishes under the guise of civil rights... Given all that, I think that NC was acting within the realm of the reasonable...even if I doubt the motives of many of the lawmakers. In fact, the NC GOP is probably acting *less* nuttily and *less* precipitously and *less* secretively than the left, the DoJ, etc. on this issue.

But I know you find it painful to question the orthodoxy on your side of things...and I don't expect you to go changin' now, man...

5:45 AM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

Oh,'re a dude who's been limping along with virtually no bullshit detector at, kettle, all that sort of thing... Though, in your case, I *don't* wonder why...I think you and I both know that *your* bullshit detector is liberal-issue and only works in one direction...

As for your third paragraph, I was presupposing that there had been no reported cases of transmen bothering women in a public restroom, and, as you correctly state, it was to override the ordinance passed in Charlotte.

And you thought it was in the realm of reason, which explains why they also put in anti-minimum wage in there as well.

As for challenging orthodoxies, there is that little thing called scientific research

Neurological research has found that the brains of transsexuals differ in a number of ways. For example, a study done on the brains of non-homosexual transsexuals using MRI and pheromones as stimuli found that transsexuals process smelling androgen and estrogen in the same way that women do. Previous research by the same team found that homosexual males also process smelling the pheromones of the sexes in a way that is similar to that of women.[12] Work done by Simon LeVay had previously found that the hypothalamus of homosexual males has a region which is similar in size to that of heterosexual females.[13] This is not so in non-homosexual males.[13] Last but not least a study done by Hilleke E Hulshoff Pol reached the conclusion that the brain does change in overall volume and the volume of its parts with the use of cross-sex hormone supplements.[14] In the case of male-to-female transsexuals, the brain assumes the proportions of a female brain.[14]

Anyway, forget evidence, how do you falsify the MiaWB theory, when it's a matter of subjective feelings in the first place.

As for autogynaphilia, I had a friend who was a tranvestite, who have been around a lot longer in the public eye than transsexuals. He got hormone shots that gave him boobs like a woman, but was still a vigorous heterosexual male in every other aspect of his life.

That theory might work for TS like my friend who wasn't willing to go into gender assignment and become "female", but it doesn't explain the neuroanatomy findings I cited above.

It's very curious how close-minded you are about this issue, Winston,

Keep defending the indefensible, Winston, with weasel words that just about seemsto be true.

8:28 AM  

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