The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

‘Gender,’ Envy and Self-Pity

Posted on | February 10, 2019 | Comments Off on ‘Gender,’ Envy and Self-Pity

Ace of Spades summarizes a not-so-surprising discovery:

[F]emale-to-male transgenders are discovering that “Male Privilege” actually doesn’t exist, and that the actual privilege belongs to women. They’re saying that now as “men,” they are being accused of “mansplaining” for merely disagreeing or correcting errors, and are expected to defer to women in any social interaction.

The source is Carl Benjamin discussing a recent Washington Post story:


Incidentally, here’s something about me: I don’t watch YouTube videos. If you want to tell me something, write it. For any literate person, reading is far more efficient than listening to the spoken word. I am an extremely fast reader, and could fully comprehend the transcript of an entire 15-minute video in less than two minutes, and why should I waste that additional time? This is why I’m sometimes confounded by the fame, such as it is, of YouTube “celebrities.” There are people out there who have hundreds of thousands of YouTube subscribers and rate as “celebrities” within whatever niche of fandom they appeal to, and I’ve never heard of them, because I don’t watch YouTube videos. And when I see someone like Carl Benjamin (a/k/a, Sargon of Akkad) making a really good point in a YouTube video, I am tempted to yell at my computer: “WHERE’S THE F–KING TRANSCRIPT?” Like, you couldn’t even be bothered to write up your argument as a blog post? If you believe what you’re saying on your YouTube channel is important, wouldn’t it reach a wider audience and have more impact if you took time to publish a transcript, or at least a synopsis of your argument? But I digress . . .

The recent clash between feminism and transgenderism (see “The Rocky Horror Ideology Show,” American Spectator, Jan. 29) fascinates me because, as has been pointed out, feminists are to some extent being hoisted on their own petard. It was feminists who originated the claim that there are no meaningful differences between male and female, that all distinctions of social roles between men and women are a product of patriarchal oppression. If this is so — if “gender” is merely a socially constructed illusion — then why can’t men be women or vice-versa? But this wasn’t a consequence they considered back in the day when feminism’s utopian scheme of a gender-neutral world of “equality” was being theorized by radical nutjobs like Kate Millett, Shulamith Firestone, Ti-Grace Atkinson, Andrea Dworkin, Mary Daly, et al.

Today’s radical feminists insist (and rightly so) that transgenderism is threatening to erase everything that feminists fought to achieve, but isn’t it true that the theoretical basis of transgender ideology derives from feminist theory, in quite the same way that feminist ideology was derived from Marxist theory a half-century ago? And all of these left-wing ideologies are rooted in the worst of human emotions, envy.

Feminists in 1969 asserted that “male supremacy” was inherently unjust:

“Women are an oppressed class. Our oppression is total, affecting every facet of our lives. . . .
“We identify the agents of our oppression as men. . . . All men receive economic, sexual, and psychological benefits from male supremacy. All men have oppressed women.”

Keep in mind that in the year that was published, more than 11,000 American men were killed by enemy action in Vietnam and I doubt the “psychological benefits from male supremacy” were adequate compensation for getting blown up by a Viet Cong mortar shell.

But oh, these women were oppressed, you see — denied the privilege of being shipped overseas to die in a sweltering jungle. Envy is the worst of human emotions, I say, rivaled only perhaps by self-pity, which is what feminist claims of “oppression” are really about, trying to get people to feel sorry for them, as if American women in 1969 weren’t among the most fortunate people in all of human history, living in a time and place of remarkable affluence and opportunity. And the success of the feminist movement (“success,” at least, in terms of obtaining political power) has been so extraordinary some men now envy the superior social status of women, coveting the political authority exercised by feminists, and so now we have transgender feminists, e.g., Charles “Charlotte” Clymer.


Some have used the acronym “LARP” — live-action role-playing — to describe the pursuit of fantasy fulfillment involved in such preposterous impostures. As I wrote, in the case of a young mentally ill woman who committed suicide 18 months after beginning testosterone injections: “What madness inspires these people? How much of a sense of failure as a woman do you need to believe you would be better off injecting synthetic hormones and undergoing surgery to become a fake ‘man’?”

Transgenderism is being promoted, on the one hand, as the ultimate in sexual fantasy and, on the other hand, as a magic cure-all for whatever dissatisfaction anyone might have with society’s expectations of what it means to be male or female. The fantasy aspect reflects an envy of the imagined pleasures to be obtained as a member of the opposite sex, while the magic cure-all reflects a self-pity about the abject misery of being “trapped” in one’s biological sex. But as Carl Benjamin points out, women who “succeed” in transition to the point of being able to pass as male find that the “male privilege” so often denounced by feminists isn’t what they’d imagined when they were gazing fondly at the greener grass on the other side of the fence. We know that gender dysphoria has high rates of “co-morbidity” with mental illness, so that their irrational and disordered thought processes prevent these people from being able to evaluate soberly the practical consequences of their decisions. In my American Spectator column about Gavin McInnes this week, I noted his 2014 defense of “transphobia”:

We’re all transphobic. We aren’t blind. We see there are no old trannies. They die of drug overdoses and suicide way before they’re 40 and nobody notices because nobody knows them. They are mentally ill gays who need help, and that help doesn’t include being maimed by physicians. These aren’t women trapped in a man’s body. They are nuts trapped in a crazy person’s body. . . .
By pretending this is all perfectly sane, you are enabling these poor bastards to mutilate themselves. This insane war on pronouns is about telling people what to do.

What has permitted this madness? Consider how the “self-esteem” cult has taken over the educational system and mental-health professions. Years ago, researchers noted a correlation between (a) success and (b) feeling good about yourself, and instead of making the obvious inference that success leads to high self-esteem, reversed the causation, to suppose instead that high self-esteem causes success:

For thousands of years, traditional Judeo-Christian values emphasized modesty and humility as the measures of a well-lived life. In these times, the self was down-played for the sake of pursuing a greater collective goal. But in the mid 20th century, a new philosophy took hold: that each and every person is special, regardless of how talented they are.
In the 1950s and 1960s, the seeds of the Cult of Self were sown with the humanistic psychology movement. The famed Abraham Maslow was one of its earliest supporters, which lead to his proposal that humans have a hierarchy of needs. The higher-order need to achieve our full potential (which he called self-actualization) could not be achieved until our lower-order needs (like food and water, physical safety, and relationships) were met. . . .
In the 1970s, the fire of self-esteem began to catch. The mega best-seller The Psychology of Self-Esteem wildly claimed that there wasn’t “a single psychological problem — from anxiety to depression, to fear of intimacy or of success, to spouse battery or child molestation” that wasn’t the result of low self-esteem. 

This absurd theory has become the basis of the “everybody-gets-a-trophy” mentality which now prevails in schools. There can be no special reward for winners, nor any punishment for failure, because this might hurt the self-esteem of the precious little snowflakes. A similar idea underlies the “anti-bullying” interventions in schools, as well as the endless celebrations of “diversity” and “inclusion” as the highest moral ideals. These ideas derived from the Cult of Self-Esteem have influenced “social justice” ideology, which claims that any expression of thoughts that might hurt someone’s feelings are “hate” and “violence” which we are all expected to condemn. It is “hate” to speak critically of obesity or homosexuality, and this attitude of political correctness often takes the form of denouncing “stigma.” You must use slang terms when referring to the mentally ill, because phrases like “lunatic” and “nutjob” contribute to the stigma of mental illness. But doesn’t the stigma exist for a reason? Crazy People Are Dangerous, as I’ve often explained, and irrational behaviors are stigmatized because they are socially harmful.



When the herpes-infected feminist Ella Dawson launched the #ShoutYourStatus hashtag to fight the “stigma” of sexually transmitted disease, I warned about the consequences:

What we recognize is that feminism has become a quasi-religious faith, in which males are demonized as the satanic forces of patriarchy. . . .
What results from this Manichean dualism — feminism good, men bad — is that the current generation is coming of age in a cultural climate where young people are encouraged to disregard any adult who tries to warn them about the obvious dangers of trying to live out the “social justice” fantasies of feminist ideology.

I do not criticize feminism in order to defend “male privilege,” but rather because feminist ideology is demonstrably harmful to society, including young women who foolishly embrace it. By the same token, my criticism of the transgender cult isn’t about “hate,” but about rejecting a deceptive ideology that falsely promises happiness can be achieved by turning delusions into reality through synthetic hormones and surgery.

No one is “trapped in the wrong body.” This is a delusion. Someone’s unhappiness with the reality of their body as male or female may lead them to imagine life would be better if they could destroy this biological reality — their physical self — and replace it with a new self. Yet making this destructive suicidal impulse the basis of “therapy,” which is what the transgender cult has done, requires everyone else to play along with this bizarre delusion. In England, you can be investigated for “hate speech” if refuse to endorse the ideology of the transgender cult:

A 74-year-old retired journalist faced a grilling from police in England after she posted online comments such as, “Sex is real.” . . .
Margaret Nelson wrote in a post online: “Gender’s fashionable nonsense. Sex is real. I’ve no reason to feel ashamed of stating the truth.”
Also, she reasoned that if a transgender person’s body was given a post-mortem examination, “his or her sex would also be obvious to a student or pathologist.”
“Not the sex that he or she chose to present as, but his or her natal sex; the sex that he or she was born with,” she wrote. . . .
Nelson said she soon heard from officers “policing” people’s opinions.
“The officer said she wanted to talk to me about some of the things that I’d written on Twitter and my blog,” she told James Kirkup of the Spectator. “She said that some of the things that I’d written could have upset or offended transgender people. So could I please stop writing things like that and perhaps I could remove those posts and tweets?
“I asked the officer if she agreed that free speech was important. She said it was. I said that in that case, she’d understand that I wouldn’t be removing the posts or stopping saying the things I think.”

The transgender movement embraces a victimhood ideology based in self-pity, and therefore accuses critics of “hate” merely for speaking truth.

UPDATE: Breaking news today:

Sane people don’t sic the police on people this way.

UPDATE II: Oh, I thought this person looked familiar:

Not a woman: Anthony Halliday (left) as ‘Stephanie Hayden’ (right).

Anthony Halliday is an obese 45-year-old man who, in 2007, began “identifying” as a woman, calling himself “Stephanie Hayden.” Because so-called “self-identification” has obtained the protection of law in England, this has the effect of empowering deranged perverts like Halliday/“Hayden” to harass anyone who refuses to participate in their “gender” delusions. Earlier this year, Halliday/“Hayden” was granted a Gender Recognition Certificate, which means that anyone in England who doesn’t acknowledge his self-declared female identity is at risk of criminal punishment.

Giving mentally ill people a “right” to their delusions is a bad idea.



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