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[Sat 28th Oct 2017] London Anarchist Bookfair (London)

smokedout

criminal
Perhaps a distinction should start to be drawn between people who have concerns, questions, or anxieties about issues relating to transgenderism and 'terfs' who really believe trans-women do not have the right to exist. This is an organised and sometimes violent movement that has hounded transwomen ever since they began to emerge in feminist spaces. And whilst this is only really a small number of radical feminists they are well represented in the media, often have well read blogs and have been able to cause real damage to trans people.

Perhaps the most insiduous aspect of this is that many myths, created by terfs, have slipped into normal discourse including on here at times. Studies which claimed to show transwomen retain male patterns of criminality but in reality show no such thing are repeatedly cited. Reactionary doctors who believe in reparation therapy are lauded as experts. Select committee reports and defunct bills are presented as new laws. If a transperson commits a violent crime this is used to attack all transpeople. Crackpot pseudo-scientific theories on trangenderism are presented as facts. That terfs (by which I mean those with the most extreme views) seem not to care that the studies they spout don't show what they say they do, or that statistics don't back up their fear mongering suggests that this is an ideological campaign, which is not interested in the truth, which believes transpeople have no right to exist at best and should be relentlessly attacked at worst. And this of course is what many of them openly believe, but realising this belief is unpopular they have created a wall of misinformation in an attempt to draw other feminists to their position. And it works. So when the first group I mentioned, of questioning/concerned people, repeat what transpeople know to be misinformation then they are assumed to be part of the second group, or why would they be repeating what is often little more than a slur? And then a big row breaks out that should probably never have happened.

A way round this might to start challenging that misinformation, for people to carefully check scary stories they might have read about transpeople for accuracy, but also a rejection and condemnation by all those who support the right of transgender people to exist of the small number of trans exclusionary radical feminists who seem to operate as little more than an obsessive hate group.

Anyway probably a bit of a derail, but just a thought.
 

gamerunknown

Well-Known Member
I could also attach screen shots of the most hateful, abusive, violent, (even murderous) statements by some trans-women/activists, but I'm sure you've seen them before. But to be honest, it distresses and frightens me. I am fearful of being attacked by some of these activists, in a way that I feared being attacked on anti-fa or Irish demos back in the day. I never ever would have expected to be fearful of attack from supposed liberals.
Well, hopefully you won't bump into many liberals at the Anarchist Bookfair.

It is a lie that the many women/feminists who are worried about the GRA, and what it will mean for girls and women in the future, are in any way anti-trans rights. It is a lie that we are responsible for the murders or violence against trans women. Let us not forget either that female born women are murdered at a rate of 2 per week in the UK. There were no murders of trans women in 2016. But we are accused of causing the murder of trans women when we, quite reasonably, imo, say that we're not comfortable with the idea that trans-women have access to all of our safe spaces. And we're not talking 'bathrooms' here. We are talking about changing rooms, refuges, prisons, women-only hostels/shelters, etc. Women have been attacked in refuges and homeless shelters by trans-women, albeit mainly in the US. I am NOT saying that all trans-women are violent (though we know that men are responsible for most violent crime, and a study (in Sweden I think) into levels of crimes committed by trans-women, even those relatively few who do actually transition) show no decrease in the incidences of violence).
Someone quoted 3 women killed per week in the US in a twitter debate (due to domestic violence I suppose) and I found that trans individuals make up 1% of the population with 26 murders so far this year. Assuming no more trans murders this year (one can hope!), that's 156 women killed in a population of 161m, a rate of 0.0001 a year, while 26 in a population of 3.23m would be 0.0008 a year, if my math's not off. Anyway, no, you're not directly responsible for the murder of trans women, any more than the perfectly regular people concerned with forced busing were responsible for lynch mobs. But the problem is one of structural violence and at the moment, trans people, particularly trans women, especially trans women who are sex workers, are at the forefront of it. I, personally, am not doing much to combat that. I've been to the sex worker memorial day twice, other than that the only actual political thing I've been involved in recently has been leafleting a factory demanding higher wages (with the AWW). Don't think it detracts from the broader anarchist argument. I also think it's perfectly reasonable to request spaces where there are no adults with penises, but we'll see I suppose.

Equality laws and sex-monitoring were established to address issues of sex-based discrimination, inequality and lack of opportunity and the GRA threatens to obscure this.
Somehow I doubt it, these statistics are pretty well tabulated.
 

shygirl

Well-Known Member
Perhaps a distinction should start to be drawn between people who have concerns, questions, or anxieties about issues relating to transgenderism and 'terfs' who really believe trans-women do not have the right to exist. This is an organised and sometimes violent movement that has hounded transwomen ever since they began to emerge in feminist spaces. And whilst this is only really a small number of radical feminists they are well represented in the media, often have well read blogs and have been able to cause real damage to trans people.

Perhaps the most insiduous aspect of this is that many myths, created by terfs, have slipped into normal discourse including on here at times. Studies which claimed to show transwomen retain male patterns of criminality but in reality show no such thing are repeatedly cited. Reactionary doctors who believe in reparation therapy are lauded as experts. Select committee reports and defunct bills are presented as new laws. If a transperson commits a violent crime this is used to attack all transpeople. Crackpot pseudo-scientific theories on trangenderism are presented as facts. That terfs (by which I mean those with the most extreme views) seem not to care that the studies they spout don't show what they say they do, or that statistics don't back up their fear mongering suggests that this is an ideological campaign, which is not interested in the truth, which believes transpeople have no right to exist at best and should be relentlessly attacked at worst. And this of course is what many of them openly believe, but realising this belief is unpopular they have created a wall of misinformation in an attempt to draw other feminists to their position. And it works. So when the first group I mentioned, of questioning/concerned women, repeat what transpeople know to be misinformation then they are assumed to be part of the second group, or why would they be repeating what is often little more than a slur? And then a big row breaks out that should probably never have happened.

A way round this might to start challenging that misinformation, for people to carefully check scary stories they might have read about transpeople for accuracy, but also a rejection and condemnation by all those who support the right of transgender people to exist of the small number of trans exclusionary radical feminists who seem to operate as little more than an obsessive hate group.

Anyway probably a bit of a derail, but just a thought.
Sorry, which 'terfs' have ever said that trans-women shouldn't exist or should be relentlessly attacked. Stop peddling these lies. It's one thing to disagree with these views but it's quite another to mis-represent them.
 

smokedout

criminal
Sorry, which 'terfs' have ever said that trans-women shouldn't exist or should be relentlessly attacked. Stop peddling these lies. It's one thing to disagree with these views but it's quite another to mis-represent them.
Perhaps you should read some of these quotes from The Transexual Empire, probably one of the most influential books amongst this group:

Rape, of course, is a masculinist violation of bodily integrity. All transsexuals rape women’s bodies by reducing the real female form to an artifact, appropriating this body for themselves. However, the transsexuality constructed lesbian-feminist violates women’s sexuality and spirit, as well. Rape, although it is usually done by force, can also be accomplished by deception. It is significant that in the case of the transsexually constructed lesbian-feminist, often he is able to gain entrance and a dominant position in women’s spaces because the women involved do not know he is a transsexual and he just does not happen to mention it.
“the issue of transsexualism has profound political and moral ramifications; transsexualism itself is a deeply moral question rather than a medical-technical answer. I contend that the problem of transsexualism would best be served by morally mandating it out of existence.”
 

MadeInBedlam

Arm the mentally ill
Perhaps you should read some of these quotes from The Transexual Empire, probably one of the most influential books amongst this group:
Which again isn’t the same as saying transwomen don’t have the right to exist, or that they are all rapists (in the literal, legal sense)
 

smokedout

criminal
Which again isn’t the same as saying transwomen don’t have the right to exist, or that they are all rapists (in the literal, legal sense)
Well no, not in the literal legal sense, but in the sense that they use the term rapist, alongside an ongoing campaign which attempts to distort facts and statistics to show that transwomen accessing woman only spaces are probably secretly rapey men.
 

redsquirrel

This Machine Kills Progressives

The second tweet down pretty much sums up my views. I think a lot of the claims in that leaflet are, at best, overstated, at worst, false and transphobic. But the blanket dismissal, and sometimes physical confrontation, of anyone who doesn't agree 100% with your position is both stupid and shit.
 
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killer b

Minimum Waste / Maximum Joy
It's difficult to be totally clear what the quote says, as it's a single sentence taken completely out of context. For contrast, the author Janice Raymond says on a page of her website called Fictions and Facts about The Transexual Empire that What this means is that I want to eliminate the medical and social systems that support transsexualism and the reasons why in a gender-defined society, persons find it necessary to change their bodies - which is quite different to saying that transexuals have no right to exist or should have no rights.

It's a bit rich cautioning people against selectively quoting and twisting data for ideological purposes then doing exactly that a post or two later.
 

Pickman's model

every man and every woman is a star
It's difficult to be totally clear what the quote says, as it's a single sentence taken completely out of context. For contrast, the author Janice Raymond says on a page of her website called Fictions and Facts about The Transexual Empire that What this means is that I want to eliminate the medical and social systems that support transsexualism and the reasons why in a gender-defined society, persons find it necessary to change their bodies - which is quite different to saying that transexuals have no right to exist or should have no rights.

It's a bit rich cautioning people against selectively quoting and twisting data for ideological purposes then doing exactly that a post or two later.
all quotes are by definition selective
 

TruXta

tired
It's difficult to be totally clear what the quote says, as it's a single sentence taken completely out of context. For contrast, the author Janice Raymond says on a page of her website called Fictions and Facts about The Transexual Empire that What this means is that I want to eliminate the medical and social systems that support transsexualism and the reasons why in a gender-defined society, persons find it necessary to change their bodies - which is quite different to saying that transexuals have no right to exist or should have no rights.

It's a bit rich cautioning people against selectively quoting and twisting data for ideological purposes then doing exactly that a post or two later.
It's a roundabout way of saying exactly the same thing, only couched in less obvious terms.
 

Rutita1

Council Estate Socialist
This is worth a read, good thread.

Thanks for linking to that. A good read indeed. I have been thinking a lot about why I don't have the same level/sense of suspicion. I'm not sure what the answer is... That leaflet was awful in approach...scaremongering and suspicion promoting. A massive turn off and I am not surprised that people feel defensive as a response to that kind of narrative.

shygirl

I think the twitter thread linked to above is worth your time.
 

smokedout

criminal
It's difficult to be totally clear what the quote says, as it's a single sentence taken completely out of context. For contrast, the author Janice Raymond says on a page of her website called Fictions and Facts about The Transexual Empire that What this means is that I want to eliminate the medical and social systems that support transsexualism and the reasons why in a gender-defined society, persons find it necessary to change their bodies - which is quite different to saying that transexuals have no right to exist or should have no rights.

It's a bit rich cautioning people against selectively quoting and twisting data for ideological purposes then doing exactly that a post or two later.
That's not selective quoting, the quote is what the book said, this is what she said on her website over 30 years later when she realised, as I discussed, that this kind of thing isn't palatable anymore and a new strategy is needed. And note eliminate the medical and social systems, not eliminate gender, but do it now, under patriarchy, dismantle any support or rights for transpeople. Raymond has also been blamed for plating a large part in elimating what little funding there was for trans healthcare in the US (and later lying about her role in that).
 

SpookyFrank

Self-cleaning oven, the whole bit.
Just a general point: being a celebrity activist doesn't necessarily mean you're not also a dickhead. It certainly doesn't mean your opinions should be taken more seriously than anyone else's.
 

SpookyFrank

Self-cleaning oven, the whole bit.
If Helen Steel had been taking videos and sending them to the police (I have no idea if this actually happened) then that's a bad thing to do no matter who she is or what she's done in the past. Conversely if she's been attacked, lied about or otherwise mistreated than that would still be a bad thing regardless of who she was.

Why say 'how dare they do this to (insert name here)' when 'how dare they do this to anyone' is enough?
 
If Helen Steel had been taking videos and sending them to the police (I have no idea if this actually happened) then that's a bad thing to do no matter who she is or what she's done in the past. Conversely if she's been attacked, lied about or otherwise mistreated than that would still be a bad thing regardless of who she was.

Why say 'how dare they do this to (insert name here)' when 'how dare they do this to anyone' is enough?
So you’re basing your sneer on something that you don’t even know happened or not?
 
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