Response; ContraPoints x Blaire White OTP


You knew this was coming. Don’t even act surprised. Though this one is probably going to be a little bit more pointed than usual, I suppose? Its going to be hard to maintain objectivity and not lay into Blaire harder than I usually would because just recently she smeared me in front of her 110,000 followers. Claiming I’d spend days calling her the anti-christ, when I hadn’t, and telling me off for DM’ing her, after she told me off for not DM’ing her previously. Then of course, blocking me.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t at least a little bit upset by this, I’d really tried to be honest and genuine with her about my criticisms. I’ve never called her the anti-christ or even said I don’t like her as a person. To be absolutely frank? I’ve let her say some really shitty things to me and let it slip for the sake of trying to maintain our relationship so that I could continue to actually get responses for my criticisms. Rather than turning it into a shit show of insult flinging. I’ve been more than forgiving of Blaire’s bullshit. Not today.

With that little disclaimer out of the way, lets get this show on the road! This is the first time I’ve ever experienced Contra, and he seemed a little reserved with his arguments. Though I still think he made some really amazing points that are definitely worthy of discussion. Blaire too, made some good points, though they’re massively overshadowed by the enormous lies she told, more on that as they come up. Here goes.

Contra: I’m curious to know what being transgender even means to you. Because before I start criticising your view; I feel like maybe you’ve changed recently from a position where you used to kind of say “being trans is a biological feature of neurology and psychology and lately you’ve said a few times that you characterise being trans as an impersonation or caricature.

Straight out of the gate. Boom! Its not even that recently. If you cast your minds back to my blog post on the Laci Green x Blaire White stream, you may remember that Blaire White said the following:

9:42 – 10:20
Blaire: Its very common within feminist spheres  to argue that there is a lack of differences between males and females neurologically and that gender is entirely socially constructed – and really what that reduces transgender people [down] to is performance of a gender. Rather than behaving in a way that their biology and neurology is fuelling them to behave. Which is what I believe and I have a lot of sources to back that up. That its not just one day you wake up and you’re like “I wanna be this!” You’re biologically fuelled to feel that way.

Then later in that same video went on to say:

39:54-40:23
Laci: You don’t feel like you’re actually a woman?
Blaire: No, no, not technically.  I think that socially [and] through medical science, and living in the west I’m able to fill the role of one. Perhaps the word “caricature” has a negative connotation to people, but I think that when you’re a transsexual your life is kind of as a caricature.
Laci: I don’t see your life as a caricature.

She flipped on a dime from, “its a neurological imperative” to “Its all just a performance”. She has doubled and tripled and quadrupled down on the latter recently. Which resulted in a massive argument on Twitter between her and Theryn. Also I was there, but she had me muted. Lol. So much for the tolerant something something.

Blaire: So I think you have a few misconceptions about my views on transgenderism. When I say that you are, you know, assuming the characteristics of a woman. I don’t mean an impersonator, like a clown or like you’re an act in that sense. I mean that when you undergo undergo hormone therapy, when you consume synthetic hormones when you undergo surgeries to alter your bones or you implant silicon in your self to obtain a biological feature that is impossible for you otherwise. That is imitating body parts that are biologically impossible for you.

So for me its more of a stepping outside of myself being able to concede the fact that of course, I am biologically male. But in the pursuit of my own happiness I choose to transition; to assume characteristics that are not natural for me.

The issue is really the words you’re using to describe it. It can only possibly lead to misunderstandings of what you’re saying and give license to people to mistreat and hate on trans people. When you say imitate, you’re implying its not real, that its all just fake, that is is just a performance. Try and imitate your friend right now without A) being fake and B) giving a performance. You literally can’t. That’s the very nature of the word imitate.

You don’t have to deny that you’re biologically male. I don’t. I don’t think my womanhood is an imitation, I don’t see my self as “kinda a caricature” and if I did – I doubt I would have ever transitioned at all. I am wholeheartedly in the belief that I’m a woman, and I can objectively verify that my brain has female sexed regions if I wanted to pay for an MRI.

At what point did we start looking at people and saying its what you are that matters, not who you are? Isn’t that collectivism in a nutshell? Doesn’t that lead down the path of radical feminism, white nationalism and #blacklivesmatter? If your body matters more than your mind, then those three things above are correct and totally justified, are they not?

Obviously not. The mind matters significantly more than the body when we’re deciding nuanced and complex things like this. I can concede that for snap judgements in the street etc, you’re right – we judge by the body. But for anything more hands-on than that, judging by the body rather than the mind becomes sexist, racist, or transphobic.

As for imitating body parts. You can’t imitate what you are – and if you’re a woman, wanting to take part in the social stereotypes of women doesn’t make you any less of a real woman or any more of a real woman either. If that were true we’d have license to say radical feminists aren’t real women, or that women who want breast implants are just trying to imitate real women. The idea of using the word imitation and caricature in this context is totally unreasonable.

Blaire: I don’t think I’ve ever called it impersonation.

Yes you have. Do you not even understand synonyms!? Below are some synonyms of imitate, circled in red are the ones you’ve actually said.

synonyms.png

Just have a good hard look at what the words your using actually mean before you go using them and doubling down on them when people call you on your shit. Christ.

Blaire: I prefer to differentiate between trans women and women because they are different

In some very insignificant ways. People treat you as a woman Blaire, because you are a woman, in every way that counts for general social interaction. There’s a need for differentiation in certain circumstances, yes. But not in any of the contexts you’ve been doing it in.

Contra: In what sense are you fully biological male if you’ve undergone hormone replacement therapy? In some senses you have the sexual characteristics of a woman, so why insist on this, born male at birth and that can never be changed thing. When you can and do change your biology.

Blaire: You can change some aspects of your biology, but you can’t alter the fact that you were born male and will die male.

Contra makes a good point here. Are we saying that Blaire’s breasts are male breasts? Is that what we’re saying here? The idea that your biology is really strict and rigid is kinda silly, especially when you’re talking about trans people who literally medicate their biology into changing to minimise dysphoria. If you combine this with the idea of neurologically sexed brains you get a fairly incomplete picture of sex. There’s no right answer on whether a trans woman, who has gone through transition, is male or female.

In fact, I’d go as far as to argue that if you took a trans woman to a doctor in all guy clothes and said “look there’s something wrong about my body” – he’d straight diagnose you with an intersex condition of some sort. Because at a medical level, our bodies are pretty damn intersexed as a result of transition.

You can’t change reproductive systems and you can’t change chromosomes. But neither of these are unique to either sex exactly. Intersex conditions do exist and effect both of these – so if we can see that there are exceptions elsewhere, why do we not afford exceptions for trans people? What makes us so different that we have to be biologically essentialist about it?

Blaire: Why do I insist on this? Because there’s a lot of people online who would never concede that trans women are biologically male.

Well that explains why you went off on one at Theryn Meyer. Who totally believes trans women aren’t biologically male, RRRRRIIIIIIGGGGHHHHTTTT?? (No, she doesn’t.) 

Blaire: If you go to a doctor, looking to transition, or an endocrinologist. You’re going to say you’re going male to female. Or female to male.

Except how you just said you can’t do that? Right? Your biology just stays the same as it always is, right?

Blaire: We also live in a society where people, most people are kind enough to, to where if they see someone who is male to female transsexual they’re just gonna as a woman because that’s how it works. But there’s a difference between people affording kindness to you and referring to you as a pronoun that is not that of your biological sex and you actually changing something.

I spoke about this kindness crap in the Laci stream too, but I’ll quickly rehash it here. Medical treatment is not given to you because its a kindness to do so. Its done because its the right thing to do. Is insulin a kindness to diabetics? Would we say chemo is a kindness for cancer?

The idea that its done as a kindness is so self-depricating and leads to the idea that its a privilege afforded to us, and that it can be taken away if people just decide they’re not down for it any more. That’s stupidly irresponsible and dangerous to say.

Jesus Christ, watching her flip-flop on her points is kinda embarrassing. Its like she doesn’t actually think about this stuff at all. 

Also. Pronouns don’t belong to biological sexes. They belong to genders. For most people gender and sex are the same, but for trans people they aren’t. This is literally the entire point of what being trans is.

Blaire: [The definition of gender dysphoria is] the mechanism in which someone actually identifies as something they are not.

By this logic, otherkin are now gender dysphoric.

Blaire’s understanding of gender dysphoria here is very simplistic. There’s a lot of nuance to be had here, and its important to remember the cause of gender dysphoria when discussing it. A biological male who is trans was never a man in their brain – their brain is sexed female according to neurology. So therefore they aren’t transitioning to something they aren’t, they’re transitioning to something they are.

We change our bodies to match our brains – because we can’t do it the other way around.

Blaire: Gender dysphoria is binary

No it isn’t. Non-binary people are included in gender dysphoria as I explained here in my blog post.

Blaire: Transsexual is biological, non-binary is not.

But they’re both gender dysphoria – its just a different way of handling it. So they’re both biological.

Contra: I don’t actually understand the “you can’t have a vagina” I don’t understand what this language is accomplishing.

I also wrote about people calling their genitals whatever they want in a post here.  Short story though, dictating to other people what they call their genitals is dumb. Though I must concede, a fauxgina isn’t the same as a vagina. There are differences – which medical science is doing an amazing job at closing down. For example, if I recall correctly, they self-lubricate now, which Blaire doesn’t know about judging by her response to this point.

Blaire: I’ve never described a trans woman as an imitator. I just haven’t.

You said they imitate, ergo they are imitators.

Someone who drums is a drummer.

This is how words work.

Blaire: That word caricature was used in the middle of a 3 hour live stream, and I can admit it wasn’t the best word to use.

Remember this moment gang, Blaire White admitted she was wrong about something – sort of.

Blaire: I don’t call transsexuals by a gender they don’t want to be called. I think that’s rude

Blaire: I don’t misgender transsexuals

7b69a279c40a7a667c2ddbed067e346b.png

I also have another example which happened in a DM group – but I won’t screenshot that. TLDR She called another trans woman a man because she was mad at her. Seems like misgendering is fine by Blaire as and when she decides it is.

Blaire: I will tell you right now; the day Riley Dennis goes on hormones, the day Riley dennis puts on a female article of clothing that’s not a jersey like he wears in every video

rjd

 

Blaire: [On Riley Jay Dennis’ pronouns] Its kinda like you telling an African American to respect Rachel Dolezal as an African American.

This logic is the exact same logic used to restrict trans rights and stop us from being able to enter bathrooms or changing rooms. The fact she’s using it to exclude someone from the definition of trans is just… so damn ironic. I can’t even.

Its even less of a good example when her argument is that Riley hasn’t transitioned so doesn’t deserve to be called trans; whereas Rachel Dolezal you could argue has “transitioned” to black and live(d) her every day life as a black woman. It wasn’t until the scandal happened that it was revealed she wasn’t actually black, right?

Blaire: I’ve never talked about passing.

Except how you often use it to decide who gets what kind of treatment. Here’s an example from your website. Oh and an archive link, I know what you’re like with deleting stuff.

Blaire: I’ve never seen Riley Jay Dennis wear female clothes
Contra: What is the difference between a female and male article of clothing?
Blaire: Girl there are clothes designated for men and women, okay. And part of transitioning…
Contra: This puts the entire burden onto expression as opposed to psychology or even biology. If someone’s taking hormone but still wears men’s clothes, I don’t see why that is a big thing for you.
Blaire: Its a big thing because I’ve lived my life as a transsexual and I know how this works.

This reminds me of the story of the UK Miss Transgender competition. Where the winner had her crown revoked by the organiser of the contest because “she wore male clothes while working out, and so wasn’t really trans”. I shit you the fuck not.

This is part of the trans purity test that I want to write about in the next few days. Suffice to say, I think its bullshit and needless to bother deciding who is *really* trans or not. I advocate personally for a separation between those who suffer dysphoria and those who don’t, but I don’t really care if you use the word trans for yourself.

Not gonna bother to quote this part. But tldr its the part about Zinnia Jones saying Blaire is enacting trans genocide, then Blaire getting upset about that and lashing out with personal attacks.

OH THE IRONY. IS IT MAYBE THAT YOU DON’T LIKE THE WORD SHE’S USING? YOU THINK SHE SHOULD USE A DIFFERENT WORD BECAUSE OF YOUR FEELINGS? WHY ARE YOU PUTTING A NEGATIVE CONNOTATION ON IT FOR HER? YOU KNOW HOW YOU COMPLAINED ABOUT PEOPLE DOING TO YOU RE: IMITATION?

Fuck. Blaire White is so inconsistent it hurts.

Blaire: When I transitioned I was 20 years old, and I’m lucky that I haven’t developed that many male characteristics

She knows this, yet she still refuses to allow puberty blockers? I just don’t get it.

Blaire: …. so if there was an alternative [to transitioning at 20 as a 6’5″ line backer] that would be amazing.

There is, puberty blockers.

Blaire: The meanest thing I’ve ever done is put a picture of Voldemort over Riley’s Adam’s apple.

It’s not really the quality of the mean that matters, its the quantity. You’re a bitch, constantly. You delete tweets so that its harder for people to prove it, but luckily for me people have wisened up to your shit and now take lots of archives when you do it. Like this one for example:

6981290ca4ebae7bfd2e82f905b5b22d.png

Blaire: Doctors won’t tie the tubes of 20 year olds because its irresponsible and they might want kids.

But there are doctors who do tie the tubes of 20 year olds. So this isn’t a great point.

Blaire: I’ve never said puberty blockers sterilise

Except you did, and tried to grandstand me about it in front of your followers. I don’t have the screenshots with your tweets in, but I do have the remnants of the conversation. Ie My tweets.

2911a7225c0ce9b313fd1d7a903d072f (1).png

[The argument about sterilisation]

On the one hand, sterilisation is a pretty serious consequence of transition – however, if its going to happen at 20 years old anyway – as with Blaire’s own transition, then why bother waiting? Like Blaire said earlier, not everyone is lucky enough to not go through a puberty that wrecks them and ruins their chances of being accepted as a woman. All of the suffering caused by this comes down to puberty.

We know that trans people will transition regardless, even if they’re 6’5 and a line backer with a rug of back hair on their back, as Blaire said earlier. So why make them wait until they get to that point? Why enforce an arbitrary rule upon them that is going to severely negatively affect them in both physical and mental regards? It makes absolutely no sense to put having a kid on this podium for trans people if the end result is still going to be sterility. Especially when one end result has massive benefits compared to the other. It’s completely irrational.

Blaire: Its like saying kids need to be on antidepressants, but it will blind them – but that’s better than them killing themselves.

That’s so not what it’s like at all. This massively disingenuous. Many people are born without the ability to have children and it doesn’t have such a profoundly huge impact on their life like how blindness would. Holy shit.

Blaire: There’s a huge and recent surge of kids being referred to gender clinics. To get referrals to medically transition. Stephen Stathis who runs a children’s hospital which doubles as a gender clinic in Australia says:

He says a lot of things, and the article you’re reading is likely The Daily Wire one which misses out some key information from the original article on The Courier. 

Here’s what they left out and its pretty important:

The psychiatrist has also seen transgender children so desperate to start puberty blockers then progress to irreversible hormone treatment they harm themselves.

“I’ve seen genital mutilation, some who try to cut off their penis,’’ he said.

‘‘The thought of touching their genitals is so abhorrent they don’t wash them and get infections.’’

At the end of last year, there was a two-year waiting list of 100 children wanting to be assessed at the hospital. With state funding, the wait is now down to three or four months, and the new gender service has seen more than 60 patients since December.

See? Huge? Its 160 children in total.  Its hardly like thousands of kids are flocking to the services for help.

Blaire:...[cont] In Nottingham there’s been a 28 fold increase in referrals in the past 8 years. In London the referrals have quadrupled.

And neither of these services are for kids. They’re for adults. The children’s services is in Tavistock (that’s in Devon) ((Devon isn’t in London)) (((Or Nottingham)))) and is the only one in my country that deals with people under 16. Here’s a link. Though there may be one in Scotland I’ve missed. 

Blaire: Hormones cause people to die earlier than others

Citation needed; women live longer than men. Partly due to the fact they produce oestrogen.

Blaire: With cross sex hormones you’re really fucking with the bone density of a male to female transsexual…

Women have less bone density than men; stop the fucking presses.

 

All in all, Blaire seems to have a really limited understanding of the things she talks about. I’ve said this before – she’s either wilfully misunderstanding and misrepresenting stuff for a purpose, or she’s just too lazy to actually research it. I don’t think these chats she’s been doing recently or her explosions on Twitter have really changed that stance for me. 

She holds on to bad rhetoric like the “we don’t let kids get tattoos” rhetoric or the “you’re sterilising them!!!!!” rhetoric and refuses to see any criticism of that idea as valid, because it doesn’t support her bias. Yet she has the tenacity to sit there and act like everyone else is being abusive to children and are morally repugnant. All while arguing for forcing kids to go through the a shitty puberty that she herself didn’t like with a high chance of them coming out the end looking like a 6’5″ line backer and not having a chance of being accepted as who you are. 

Nearly all of the problems trans women face as adults come down to puberty and how little it fucked them – unless we take that out of the equation altogether with blockers. So what’s the argument for making them do that? Why inflict decades of mental anguish upon people when we have a better way? 

In short, her perspective on everything discussed has no consistency with the other things she said, relies on faulty rhetoric and lies. It doesn’t take into account any of the actual information out there, just her preconceptions of it, and yet people still take her seriously and act like she’s rational and reasonable? She isn’t. She’s emotional and irrational, all the damn time.

Honestly I wish Contra had said more stuff that I could criticise because this looks like I’ve just gone for Blaire pretty badly. But genuinely, what Contra was saying wasn’t misinformed, and he provided sources for a lot of it. 

This took so fucking long to write. Jesus Christ. Someone send it to Blaire for me because she blocked me? Thanks.

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40 thoughts on “Response; ContraPoints x Blaire White OTP

  1. AlexLopez says:

    I told you I was going to comment on this! Going to do my part, then! 😛

    First of all, I gotta say I agree with pretty much everything you said. (I think the “exposing” could’ve made less of a part in the post, but it’s your post, your rules)

    I know see her usage of “caricature” in a total different light. I don’t think anymore that she used it as a way to say that she didn’t have a natural woman’s body, therefore not being “a woman.” She straight up sees herself as not being a woman, period. Which is definitely odd, since she mentions multiple times in her videos that she feels like she’s a woman.

    Regarding the non-binary people can be trans/dysphoric: I did read your post related to it and I still don’t quite understand.
    If dypshoria leads you to want to transition to a body where you feel more comfortable, how could you do so if you don’t see yourself as neither a male or female?
    I understand that anyone can have dysphoria, but are you saying that people can be dysphoric despite identifying themselves as non-binary or that people can be dysphoric and transition into a “non-binaric” state if they so desire?

    “Blaire: You can change some aspects of your biology, but you can’t alter the fact that you were born male and will die male.”

    Here, I don’t think she’s fighting against the idea that her boobs are male. You definitely can’t alter the fact that your were born as a male and die as such, in a literal sense.
    I will say that I have a hard time undestanding how you (not necessarily you, Cursed) can say that a trans woman’s body isn’t male because of hormones. It’s still hormones implanted in a male body, right?

    Talking about Riley now. I’m with Blaire on this one, but I don’t follow her logic per se. I agree that you don’t have to act feminine all the time if you’re a pre-transition woman (Riley). However, I would expect her (I might misgender her, I’m doing my best, here) to have more feminine actions. Not in the way that she HAS to look like a girl to be considered trans, but in the way that if I (I’m projecting of course) were dysphoric, wearing makeup or wearing dresses would be better for my dysphoria than using regular clothing and possesing almost zero female qualities.
    This is not meant to bash Riley, but how do you see her as trans/dysphoric if she is not presenting as what she wants to be known as, a woman? Isn’t that the whole point of dysphoria? Not being OK with your current body? Riley said she has no problem with her body and that she has “skinny privilege.”


    Puberty Blockers, I don’t see her problem. I think it’s at the point where if you get to have them, use them, simple as that.

    Oh, I do have a question about this. Sure, they don’t sterilize you since you were never fertile, but isn’t that just nitpicking? Blaire says you are able to, then you’re not. You say you are not able to because you were never able to.
    Is there any reason for this “debate” or was it just to clarify something?

    Regarding trans women dying sooner. I definitely never heard of trans women dying sooner as in having a shorter life span, period. But I did hear that a lot of the hormones you take can give you higher chances of contracting certain diseases, that might lead you to dying sooner. Dunno if she meant it like that.

    Disregarding your post, and going for a personal question regarding the stream: What are your thoughts on “If there was a pill to kill dysphoria, I would take it” argument? I agree with Blaire again.
    I see dysphoria as something that can end someone’s life, and it can be used as an escape goat of sorts if you have the horrible luck of growing up in a super religious family that doesn’t believe/agree with transgenderism.
    Seeing dysphoria as a negative condition, that affects your life in a negative way, is it that “transphobic” to wish that people could live without having to go through the horrible parts of the transition?

    All in all, thank you for giving your time to write a review on this, as June put it, shitshow!

    I wanna know all your juicy answers! ❤

    Like

    • Noot Noot says:

      Mind if I chip on the dysphoria question? I’m a trans guy btw, anti-trans religious family to boot 😛

      I get the magic pill question a lot from said parents and therapists and whatnot, and I’ve always found it impossible to answer. Of course I hate dysphoria with every ounce of my being and want it gone more than just about anything. If I could take a body-transformation pill and become a cis *man*, I would in a heartbeat, no question. But presumably this is a pill that affects my brain, erasing my dysphoria and making me a cis woman. And that’s a very complicated and troubling prospect. Changing my internal sense of gender would eliminate a significant part of who I am. I have little doubt that I’d be happier without crippling dysphoria and the depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation that came with it. The question is whether I’d still really be *me*, and whether my identity is a sacrifice I’m willing to make to alleviate my dysphoria. The answer varies depending on whether I’m having a “this isn’t so bad” day or an “I welcome the sweet embrace of death” day.

      In any case, I’m with Blaire to the extent that it’d be great for a cure to exist, so that we can have that choice. Or even some kind of pre-natal detection and cure, so that a child’s identity never develops contrary to its sex at all. If I’d never thought of myself as anything other than cis female, there wouldn’t be a problem. Now I’ve spent virtually of my life feeling male and several years actively presenting and living as one, I can’t really imagine being a cis woman and still being me, if that makes sense.

      Also looking forward to hearing Cursed’s take on this!

      Liked by 1 person

      • AlexLopez says:

        I really liked your answer! I do want to make a clarification!

        In this hypothetical world, I imagined the pill would be taken before transition, not after. I think it becomes worthless for most trans people. You already transition, the hardest part was the before and the during, I would imagine.

        That’s why I mention the religious family in such a strong meaning. The family doesn’t believe in that, so you are able to take the pill INSTEAD of transitioning. I totally understand the conflicting idea of taking the pill AFTER transitioning. A part of you would be “destroyed” in a sense, and I’m not sure if it’d work after the transition.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cursede says:

        Yeah. I touched on it in a post before. Think I linked it here somewhere. It’s a pretty nuanced idea. It’s hard to know where I really stand on it all for the same reasons as you.

        Like

    • Twee says:

      “She straight up sees herself as not being a woman, period. Which is definitely odd, since she mentions multiple times in her videos that she feels like she’s a woman.”

      I noticed that. Isn’t “feeling like a woman” basically the gender identity separate from sex that she also denies existing? How can she feel like a woman if there’s nothing to her other than physical sex?

      “I will say that I have a hard time undestanding how you (not necessarily you, Cursed) can say that a trans woman’s body isn’t male because of hormones. It’s still hormones implanted in a male body, right?”

      Depends how you define “male”. If the only criteria you’re using for calling a body male is “has a Y chromosome in its DNA”, then sure, it’s hormones implanted into a male body. But there are multiple ways of classifying whether a body is male, female, or something in between, that are more or less useful depending on the context. One of the ways to do that can be based on hormone levels.

      So a trans woman that takes hormones could be genetically male (a.k.a. has an XY sex chromosome), hormonally female (a.k.a relatively high levels of oestrogen and relatively low levels of testosterone), and a somewhere between the two if you’re going by multiple characteristics (that include chromosomes and hormones, along with genitals, secondary sex characteristics, etc.) They’re all biological, so which of those you decide to use as your definition of the vague-ish term “biological sex” is basically arbitrary (though again, some are more useful than others in a given context).

      So saying she’s “objectively” biologically male is nonsense. Nothing about the labels humans use to discuss things is objective, only more or less useful to describe things. Frankly, I don’t think “biologically male”, when applied to someone whose most practically relevant biological characteristics are by-and-large female, is a particularly useful description.

      Like

    • paintcat says:

      I’m not familiar with this Riley person or her work at all, but I’m gonna give my thoughts on your question anyway. My main thought when watching that part of the video was “wtf Blaire, you don’t know her life.”

      If a person says they identify a certain way and prefer a certain set of gender pronouns, you use them. Full stop. I’ve known multiple trans folk who didn’t transition medically either because they didn’t have the financial means or they it wasn’t safe for them to do so in their normal life. No, these people don’t look like one expects a person of their gender identity to look. They don’t “pass.” And it can be frustrating to be in a support group with them and hear about how depressed they are because they’re not ready to ditch their shitty friends who won’t accept them, but dammit, all the more reason to be one of the few people who do respect that person’s gender.

      When I first came out as trans, I transitioned socially first thing. I didn’t have the money to buy guy clothes, I was wearing my hair long, I certainly hadn’t done any medical transitioning. This was not out of laziness or a lack of conviction about my gender. It was because I had so MUCH conviction about my gender that I wanted to get started as soon as possible, and changing my name and pronouns was the only thing I could do at the time.

      Many people in the trans community draw a distinction between body dysphoria and social dysphoria. Some also point out mental dysphoria, but I don’t fully understand that one so I’m leaving it alone. Anyway, the point is that one might feel dysphoric about their body parts and need to transition medically in order to alleviate that, and someone else might feel mostly socially dysphoric and simply being seen in society as their real gender does the trick (clothes, presentation, name, pronouns, etc.) Most trans folk have a combination of these, but it sounds as if Riley has mostly social dysphoria.

      Not much is known about what causes dysphoria and how to treat it besides trans folks’ trial and error. My policy is generally to trust peoples’ reports of their own experience, since that’s just about all the data we have!

      Like

  2. A.R. says:

    Thanks for the review of a frustratingly unproductive debate! You pretty much covered the main issue I had with Blaire’s arguments, many of which were contradictory if you just bothered to really scrutinize them (I notice most of her audience didn’t bother).

    It seemed like a lot of the debate was focused on semantics and the language she chooses to use, e.g. the idea of caricature or mimicry. Like…I get what she was trying to say, that she didn’t have those traits and so needed hormones to match her body to her mind, but as Theryn Meyer pointed out, if doing so is becoming more authentic, why choose to describe it that way?? It’s not accurate and just feeds into a certain narrative about trans people that we’re trying to overcome.

    I notice you didn’t cover her misinformation about neo-vaginas, which she described as being literal wounds.

    Good points about NBs too. The other thing is, I think she claimed you can’t move to some in-between with medical transition, which I know isn’t true from reading or interacting with NBs online. It’s not that hard to dig up this info. If the data is lacking, it’s because there’s fewer of them and a more recent development w/in a fairly new field that’s still got a lot of stuff to fix on the binary end. I’ve felt for a while w/the endless debating over NB on YT that there’s a real lack of listening to NB people, or limited exposure to the non-dysphoric folk, or simply not bothering to research the history prior to Tumblr.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cursede says:

      Yeah. I had misconceptions about NB people too until I spoke with some. Learnt some new things and adjusted my world view. Don’t know why that’s so hard for to do. Or her fans.

      And yeah outside of that it was pretty just an argument about semantics. And it was so damn frustrating to watch. I feel a little bad that Contra didn’t get his points actually criticised at all really. Blaire just brick walled to the.

      Like

      • A.R. says:

        Probably for the same reason Sargon can’t be bothered to watch more than 5 minutes of a response video…

        Yeah, my general feelings on the debate itself was that it should’ve been more tightly structured and Shoe wasn’t really the ideal mod. Maybe that would’ve allowed for more substantive back and forth.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Andrew47xxy says:

    Pretty good review, I would like to add though that I am extremely tired of seeing a marginalized community (intersex) being used as a tool for this argument, you don’t mention anything that intersex people go through and just slide it in there that “technically trans people in transition are intersexed” (intersexed is not a word), that isn’t how intersex works, your born with a intersex variation you don’t transition to it, and last I checked in order for trans people to transition they need to give consent for it, something that intersex people don’t get when doctors butcher our bodies -_-

    Like

      • Andrew47xxy says:

        It just comes across as kind of shitty, like a couple lines about intersex but nothing about intersex at the same time.
        Since finding out I have 47,XXY chromosomes and than later finding out about other genders (or none 🙂 ) my visits with my endocrinologists have been pretty much garbage, in the past 4 years its literally been him telling me that I need to go on testosterone for my health, and when I ask about estrogen the response is “Estrogen will have negative effects like breast development” (I doubt it my doctor believes in Non-binary let alone Agender) than finding out that I have been told backwards information in relation to some surgeries growing up doesn’t help either.
        Sorry if I jumped the gun a bit, the past two months has been a week by week of people talking about intersex people to prove a point without actually inviting intersex people into the conversation and I am getting tired of it all.

        Liked by 1 person

        • cursede says:

          I get it. And your experience is something I’d like to hear more about. I had to have a surgery relating to my intersex condition so I’m hardly totally unaware of the way it’s dealt with. And it sucks.

          But yeah I didn’t touch on it much here because it wasn’t a post about the intricacies of intersex. Though I would like to do a post about that in the future. And maybe touch on the idea of it being a deformity and how that leads to people wanting to try and fix us. Rather than leaving us be.

          Thanks for the comments yo!

          Like

  4. Rex says:

    On the subject of not labeling Riley J Dennis as “she/her” because “Riley doesn’t dress like a woman,” I call bullshit. No, Riley doesn’t dress like Blaire, the kind of woman who shops at Forever 21, Nordstrom, etc. and is covered the 3 layers of contour. Riley does her makeup more like June/Shoe (winged eyeliner) and wears women’s cuts of unisex clothing with women’s patterns and designs on them. The clothes Riley wears are culturally ascribed as being female, at least the female version of unisex clothing. Riley also keeps her body clean shaven (she has pictures of her legs on instagram) and is, in general, a very low maintenance kind of girl.

    I also want to bring up that earlier this week in a livestream, Blaire made a passive-aggressive remark about how it’s impossible to keep a transgender friend for more than a year (in reference to Theryn). The day before, Theryn made is clear that she held no ill-will toward Blaire and had no idea what she had even done wrong. The problem is obviously Blaire. I think she takes the incident with her unhinged former roommates and applies it to every interaction she has with other people thinking that this one instance is irrefutable proof that she’s a victim in all her relationships. Blaire reminds me of one transwoman I used to be friends with. Both of them emotional abuse the people around them and act like victims while they surround themselves with a sea of followers kept out of the loop who praise them for being “so strong/smart.”

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Twee says:

    This was a good read, and good points! A couple of things that came to my mind during the debate/now that I simply have to get out somewhere:

    “I mean that when you undergo undergo hormone therapy, when you consume synthetic hormones when you undergo surgeries to alter your bones or you implant silicon in your self to obtain a biological feature that is impossible for you otherwise. That is imitating body parts that are biologically impossible for you.”

    By this logic, people having treatment for Type 1 diabetes are “imitating” non-diabetics, because it’s otherwise biologically impossible for them to produce the right amount of insulin. There are plenty of problems that result from the body not being able to do things without artificial help, and giving them that help is pretty much the basis of modern medicine. People wouldn’t generally call medicine “a way of helping sick people imitate healthy people”. They’re more likely to call it “a way of helping sick people *become* healthy people”.

    “[The definition of gender dysphoria is] the mechanism in which someone actually identifies as something they are not.”

    It’s not even just simplistic, it’s flat out incorrect. Gender dysphoria isn’t the same thing as being transgender. Gender dysphoria is strictly the *distress* caused by an incongruence between someone’s gender identity and their physical form (and/or social presentation, arguably). It’s a symptom people who are transgender usually have, and a potentially debilitating one, but it’s not the condition itself, any more than the act of coughing is in itself literally flu. Gender dysphoria can be treated by transitioning, at which point the person will no longer experience the same level of distress and thus wouldn’t have gender dysphoria any more, but they would still be transgender.

    You don’t even necessarily have to be trans to have gender dysphoria. If a cis guy was forced to undergo gender transition and be physically altered to appear female, he’d feel the same distress a trans person would feel, even though he’d been assigned correctly at birth and by some metrics he’d still be biologically male. David Reimer could be considered an example of this – someone who would otherwise be a cis boy, who suffered an accident and was then raised as a girl and had to transition back later because of the distress it caused him.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Actthenpens says:

    “She flipped on a dime from, “its a neurological imperative” to “Its all just a performance”.” I don’t agree that this is what Blair did there. It seems that while Blaire recognises the ‘neurological imperative’ to be a woman she is also aware that her body is male, whilst she can change her body to appear female it never will ‘technically’ be female.

    If acknowledging the truth makes her see her life as a female as a caricature, then that is her opinion.

    One of the biological truths for the role women play in society is motherhood, this is a biological imperative Blaire will never have. Without that biological base her role as a women will, of course, be more of a ‘performance’ than a biological female because she is not subject to the biological imperatives females are (yes that holds true for infertile women, they make a cognitive choice to take on the performative female role as mothers even if their is a neurological drive). Blaire is never going to accidentally find herself knocked up or get desperate for a child in her late 30’s.

    Like

    • Tranime Girl (@tranimegirl) says:

      “Blaire is never going to…. get desperate for a child in her late 30’s”

      I’m assuming you think it applies to all transwomen, please correct me if I’m wrong, and explain how it’s just Blaire.
      Well, I have news for you. I have a strong drive to have a child. 1, I can’t. 2, based on my family history, I have decided it would be a bad idea anyway. My family’s bloodline shouldn’t be continued.
      Despite that, the drive is there.

      Like

      • cursede says:

        I’ve always wanted to have my own kids personally. But I don’t want to just be the sperm donor – that’s uncomfortable. If I can’t carry and birth the kid I might as well save that discomfort and just adopt. So that’s what I’m gonna do.

        Like

  7. Anonymous says:

    Reading this has opened my mind to a lot of things that blaire has said that has flew passed my head, so thank you for writing this. I felt like the debate didn’t really accomplish much. I felt like Contra left the stream understanding Blaire’s ideas more so than Blair with Contra’s ideas. A lot of it was semantics and nit-picking.

    I don’t agree that someone who is trans is trying to “imitate” a man or a woman. When i think of someone trying to imitate a woman, I think of drag queens because that is what they’re actually doing. They’re taking typical stereotypes if you will, of women and impersonating that x10. Trans people are going through means that will get their internal sense of self to match their outer self. That’s my understanding of it.

    On to if children should be allowed to transition or not. I can somewhat understand where Blaire is coming from on this. I’m sure there are people who are in their early teens and are figuring out their gender and identity. They may be confused and decide to label themselves as being trans even though they may not be. But what I’m thinking is that if they do end up going down the path of puberty blockers, would they not have to go through therapy and see doctors to determine the indicators of them being trans? That would sift through people who thought they were trans but aren’t. And i honestly don’t think there’s massive hoards of children waiting to get hormones or puberty blockers like Blaire is suggesting. And I definitely can’t see how letting a child explore their options when they say they’re trans or questioning their gender is child abuse.

    Blaire has mentioned quite a few times on if someone is “passing” or not if that determines what other people should refer to them as. I will say that we as humans like to categorize things to better help us to understand. If you saw someone you didn’t know at all and they had female secondary sex characteristics, you’re most likely to assume they identify as a woman. But if someone wants to be referred to by a certain pronoun then you should more than likely do it. Blaire has no position to be determining whether if Riley is trans or not. Blaire presents as really feminine and if that’s what she wants to do, then that’s ok. There are trans women who i follow on social media and they too present really feminine. But that doesn’t mean that every single trans woman out there has to do the same. Just like how not every cis woman is super feminine all the time.

    The “debate” seemed to me to be more of Blaire getting defensive. Contra said stuff too but all in all i was mostly on the middle of what the two were saying at eachother

    Like

  8. thedxman says:

    Just a note: #BLM is entirely about treating black people as individuals with brains rather than just bodies: protesting when black kids are described as adults, black bodies assumed to be savage, black brains ignored as thugs. So unless I misread that bit it seems you’ve got things exactly the wrong way round there. Otherwise thanks for the great read, the only other point I’d have is that MRI results aren’t directly measuring patterns of neuronal firing or connectivity, but rather the proxy of blood flow and so “female sexed” brains, although identifiable, aren’t necessarily essentially different in activity (although measurably different in structure) and also the differences among female brains are going to be larger than in comparison to male brains and finally brain plasticity will mean brain shape and firing patterns will also be influenced by the environment during individual development.
    Anyhoot thanks for the great blogpost, Blaire White really is infuriatingly inconsistent in her positions.

    Like

  9. Cody Larson says:

    Saying that you are physiologically impelled toward feeling and acting like X, does not make you X, though you will likely desire to act and/or resemble X. If a man has a tumor in his brain which makes him hallucinate that he is a woman, he is not now a woman. If the tumor is inoperable, what is the solution? Social kindness would be to allow him to act the role of a female; it’s harmless (excluding hormones or surgery) and avoids repetitive interpersonal conflict. Transgenders are perhaps (at best) physiologically impelled to want the attributes of the opposite gender, including their lifestyle, but that does not equate to being female. There is no spectrum for chromosomal assignment where you may slide from one chromosomal alignment into another. There are individuals with an uncommon chromosomal alignment providing features of both biological genders, but again this is not a sliding spectrum, for they cannot become fully male or female chromosomally. They can however enact the social role of the sex they prefer and force secondary sex characteristic development, if needed, to match their choice.

    MRIs of transgender brains reveal that in SOME ways, not ALL ways, the MTF transgender brain acts like a female brain. Some grey matter regions correspond (right putamen) but not all. Thinning of the right subcortical region is also correlative with female brains. But correlation is not causation. Having features similar to a female brain does not make your brain female. When males go through puberty and some develop transient gynecomastia, they do not have transiently female breasts. You have a physiological condition that impels you to feel and act like a female. You are not chromosomally female, even if you are intersex. We do not know of a treatment for this dysphoric condition, but unlike the dysmorphic condition anorexia nervosa, allowing you to act the part of a female won’t implicitly kill you.

    You say you ARE a woman, but in truth you are a person who BELIEVES they are a woman. You are not a woman objectively; even by MRI standards, as you have features of a female brain enacted by cells which are chromosomally male, and not a fully female brain developed from female chromosomes. Taking hormones can get you closer to physiological remodeling, fooling your male cells into acting female, but this is a deception. It is currently a socially accepted deception, but you have deceived yourself into believing you are ACTUALLY female, leading to conflict with those who rightly point out that you are not what you believe you are.

    The mind does not dictate reality. The mind is an organ functioning to gather information and generate conceptual models to allow us to interact with the environment beyond our sense organs. This produces an objective reality to us most of the time, but conceptual thinking carries with it the risk of flawed perception and understanding. This is why humans do better in groups than alone, and why we remove those who are delusional or demented from positions that affect the outcome of the group. We recognize delusional thinking (believing that which is objectively false) as unhealthy. Sometimes we can treat it and sometimes we can’t. (Gender dysphoria is not a delusion, but those with gender dysphoria who truly believe they are the opposite chromosomal gender ARE categorically delusional.)

    In the case of MTF transgender dysphoria, the accepted treatment is an accepted social deception. You are not a female desiring more pronounced secondary sex characteristics (such as the female enhancing her breasts with implants). You are forcing the secondary sex characteristics of another gender to socially operate as a female in order to cope with the fixed internal discontent (possibly generated by those few areas of the brain which resemble and function like a female brain) that you are not your actual chromosomal gender. These activities are not unreasonable, but deceiving yourself and attempting to change public opinion of what constitutes being female to accommodate your fixed internal discontent, is unreasonable.

    Lastly, transgender dysphoria is not diabetes or cancer. Those conditions cause organ failure leading to death. Dysphoria does not implicitly cause degeneration of life supporting organ systems. It is often associated with depression, but even so, medical treatment with hormones and/or surgery does not significantly alter this depression. Hormones and surgery are a medical OPTION for coping with dysphoria because we do not see these interventions as life threatening and have the possibility of allowing someone with dysphoria to lessen, though never totally resolve, their conflict with objective reality. Your desire to subjectify what it is to be female is merely symptomatic of this conflict. Since you cannot resolve dysphoria completely with medical intervention, redefining for others what constitutes BEING female is merely another forced solution for resolving your objective/subjective conflict.

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