Pleasing all the people

I wrote “An address to the Radical Feminists” then wondered about publishing it somewhere other than my blog. I would need to work more on it. Feminist Current, perhaps? However there I find the liar, transphobe and TERF Sarah Ditum engaged in monstering anyone who uses the term. She pretends not to have an audience, though she writes for the New Statesman; says no-one should point out she is a TERF, because if they do they are insufficiently committed against violence against women; claims Lindy West withdrew the re-tweet because she was frightened of being labelled TERF, rather than disapproving of TERFs, and had no time to check evidence even though googling “Sarah Ditum TERF” produces an abundance of evidence.

And CK Egbert says trans women will always have male socialisation and male privilege, and should be excluded from all women’s spaces, because they are not for us. Any feminist who welcomes trans women has “diverged from their feminist roots”. Feminists should defend TERFs. Some of the comments are very hostile. Pro-trans commenters are attacked.

I stripped out of my post as much as I could to which TERFs might object, perhaps alienating trans readers, yet they could still attack it if they wanted. I know some of the attacks myself. I state the argument about pornography- Do I want a cookie? No, I just want to draw analogies. I always want to communicate in a way that will be understood and heard by my target audience.

But I don’t think I can. They will only consider what I say in order to deride it.

There will always be people hostile to trans women. Most people can be won over to acceptance, more or less grudging, by, “We have a hard time, we’re mostly harmless.” We don’t do this to attack you, we are just living our lives as best we can…we are an anomaly, there are few of us, etc. I am sweet. Really. Yet feeling under hostile scrutiny, needing defensive niceness, makes me want not to be.

Stripped of the anger and attempts to persuade those undecided or lukewarm in favour of trans women, as far as I can see their position is this. They do not mind us wearing dresses or makeup, only us claiming to be women and to enter women’s spaces. It is not personal, but political. They are not concerned with individuals, but with the class of [cis] women. I say I did that in order to survive, and they say, not our problem.

I might hope these battles might exhaust themselves on the internet, with real life not bothering much, then I read of all the conservative legislation to exclude us.

Lili Elbe by Gerda Wegener

4 thoughts on “Pleasing all the people

  1. I have often found it to be a matter of extreme irony that a group calling so hard and so passionately for equality and inclusive treatment would be prepared to be almost militant in its exclusive of trans women. I wonder if this irony is lost on them?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve found it very good for my internet sanity to remind myself that the perfect argument that will convince all the people does not exist. It’s still useful to try, I think, because there are always the silent watchers on the fence, trying to educate themselves. Still, there’s no shame in deciding you’ve spent enough energy on this particular asshole and its time to worry about something else.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Exactly. It is the people in the middle I need to convince. The most extreme might listen to someone slightly less extreme, and reel it in a bit, but never to me. I was on at some homophobic Christian again this week- that did no good, either.

      Liked by 1 person

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