steepholm (steepholm) wrote,

A thought on the Bindel controversy

There seems to be puzzlement and irritation in some quarters that, despite a nudge-nudge hint from Stonewall that Julie Bindel has not actually won their Journalist of the Year award, and despite an apology from Bindel for the tone (not the substance) of one of her transphobic articles, many in the transsexual community are still unwilling to let her nomination pass without protest. How could they be so churlish?

Well, as a thought experiment, imagine that a national, respected Trans organization had decided to give an award for journalism to a writer who expressed the view that lesbians did not really exist, and that women only pretended to be lesbian for their own political or other advantage. (For a clue as to how that would be received, note that even a hint that some women may do this was enough to send Julie Bindel to her libel lawyer a few days ago.) Further, this hypothetical journalist - whose knowledge and experience of actual lesbians is virtually nil, by the way - has written that a world filled with lesbians would look like the set of The Waltons, with everyone dressed in dungarees. Also, that as lesbians' bodies are clearly designed for heterosexual sex they must (if not actively deceiving) be confused or psychologically disturbed, and that they should be given therapy to effect a ‘cure’. In the meantime, of course, lesbianism should be condemned by society as a whole.

Is it likely that such an award would be uncontested by lesbian activists? Would people then be asking them patronizingly why they objected to their precious lesbian identities being opened to the bracing fresh air of debate? And, if the Trans organization retorted to all objections with a form letter saying the journo was being nominated for her advocacy on trans issues and not her blatant homophobia, would that be enough to silence protest? Do pigs fly?
Tags: gender
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