Monday, May 28, 2018

Jane Clare Jones: "'You Are Killing Me': On Hate Speech And Feminist Silencing"

This is, IMO, worth a read. Fair warning: it does contain a lot of more-or-less standard-issue left-of-liberal feminist nonsense. But that's ignorable. A lot of the fair points aren't new, but some of the stuff about the role of oppression/"oppression" in the argument is, I'd say, worthwhile. 
   I've made these points before, but:
(a) The good news is that more feminists are standing up against transgender ideology.
(b) The bad news is that those are basically the only socially permissible criticisms of TI. 
   But that's how things go on the left; it doesn't tolerate criticisms from the right--nor from no particular political direction. Only criticisms of the form You're not lefty enough are permitted. That's probably why there are so many counterproductivity arguments--they're a kind of noncomittal work-around. Your position harms the left is most naturally interpreted as: I agree with your ends, and only question your means
   As I keep asserting: t's a matter of great concern that such a crazy theory was forced onto us so easily and effectively. And it's another matter of great concern that the theory seems vulnerable only to criticism from the left. But, as a practical matter, we should take what we can get. I continue to think that this episode is of great importance, and worthy of a lot of much attention. It reveals an important social vulnerability--a crucial derangement of our contemporary collective mind. Not every crazy view of the left is vulnerable to criticism from the left. So long as we allow this weird dynamic to persist, the only thing saving us from such views will be luck.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

(1) Much of the template for the disagreeing-is-murder rhetorical trope has been set up by hard right Israeli nationalists in Israel and the US. This has been going on since at least the late 80s, around the first intifada. The natural liberal response to the problem of the occupied territories is the integrationist one: let Israel become a secular, multi-ethnic state, with equal rights for all the people who live there. For the nationalist, however, ties to religion and ethnicity are essential to the state. So, people who support separation of church and state do not support Israel's "right to exist". For 30 years, supporters of a one state solution in Israel have been near universally labeled "eliminationists" who preach the "destruction of Israel". From the labels, you can't tell a Jeffersonian freedom of religion type from someone planning a second holocaust. This imposed poverty of our discourse, background normal after 30 years of repetition, suits the both the hard right Israeli nationalists and the anti-Semites just fine.

As the article you link to points out, the nominalist/essentialist, reconception = death argument has a built in tendency to make strange bedfellows. In this case, the supposedly super-radical transgender theorists and gender role conservatives, both of whom believe dresses & pumps femininity to be the essence of womanhood.

(2) Here's a non-post related book rec, hot of the presses: Who We Are and How We Got Here, by David Reich. It's a very thorough round up of the vast amount of data on human genetic diversity and the settlement of the Earth made available by the new techniques for getting whole genome sequences from ancient human remains, work mostly done in the last two years. Right up your alley.

4:20 PM  

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