Stream: The Transgender Logic of Gender Fluidity Justifies Absurdities

Science attempts to discover whether this is a tall male cat.
Science attempts to discover whether this is a tall male cat.

Today’s mandatory reading is at The Stream: The Transgender Logic of Gender Fluidity Can Justify Absurdities:

Gender, say some, is separate from sex. You are a man in the sense of sex if you are a man biologically, which is to say, having the attributes, however imperfectly, which define the essence of a man. The qualification is necessary, because you are still a man in the biological sense if, for instance, you are fallen victim to some horrible industrial accident and are therefore missing certain appendages.

But you are a man in the sense of gender if you believe, or claim, you are a man. Biological men can therefore be gender-men, too, by merely recognizing their biological status is “right” or “works” for them. But biological women can also be gender-men, by claiming that their biology is in opposition to their gender. A person whose gender is in opposition to biology is called transgender

Suppose, dear reader, you claim to be seven feet tall. It’s your identity. You are a tall man trapped inside the body of a short one. How dare anybody deny your tallness.

It does no good whatsoever to insist that a physical measuring tape “says” you are (for instance) 5’10”. Your say you are 7′: not in height, but stature. Stature is not equivalent to height. Height is biological. Stature is separate and not equivalent (and fluid)…

If we admit that the physical or biological measure for height has primacy over stature, then we must insist on the biological measure of sex over gender. To maintain logical coherence, anybody who argues for the transgender position must agree with this.

The only possible rebuttal is that height and sex, and therefore stature and gender, are different. And this is true. But it is a non sequitur. The argument is not that sex and height are different, but that the only proof of transgenderhood is and can only be personal assertion, and therefore the only proof of stature is and can only be assertion. If you accept assertion as proof of transgenderhood, to say “stature is not allowed to be asserted” becomes itself mere assertion, and therefore you utter a contradiction. To limit assertion-as-proof for gender only is to draw an artificial line based on personal prejudice. It is bigotry.

In an article elsewhere I argued “I Self Identify As A Yak“. Every argument I used to justify my yakhood was parallel to the arguments men use when claiming to be women. This may seem absurd, but consider that many people do assert they are not human beings but animals of another species. Not in the biological sense, of course, but in the same sense gender is not sex and stature not height…

These parallel arguments work for anything. A biological–and–gender–human–species–male walks into the bar and says, “My maturity is 21.” Is it only out of maturophobia that that bartender refuses to serve the person, who is biologically 14, a drink? It must be if the bartender insists on physical chronology to assess maturity—which is not age!…

The government is not the only one who can creates mandates, you know. I can, too. So go to The Stream and read the whole thing.


  1. you claim to be seven feet tall. …You are a short man trapped inside the body of a tall one.

    Ummm … shouldn’t that be: a tall man trapped inside the body of a smaller one?

  2. DAV,

    My enemies never rest.

    The Stream’s post is the one after the editors are done with it. They caught the typo. They also removed some of the more complicated arguments. For instance, the one about gender/stature not being equivalent to sex/height, which can only be claimed by raw assertion, which is the very justification of men claiming to be women.

  3. I’ve developed a pronounced pot belly, which I believe entitles me to self-identify as pregnant and take advantage of the close-in parking spots reserved for expectant mothers.

  4. Used to be that if you claimed to be Napoleon people thought you were just crazy but now if you claim to be Josephine people think it is true.

  5. From the full article: “Those who call themselves transgender are understandably loathe to admit to disease (mental or physical). Instead, they insist the transgender state is “natural,” even desirable.”

    THAT is the core of the problem — the denial that however real the feelings such an individual experiences may be, they almost certainly reflect some mental health issue…the ‘orientation’ may be relatively common, but certainly abnormal.

    I recall happening on an article ages ago, when such topics were a curiosity & not a social cause, about a strong correlation observed after WWII involving women having been pregnant in their first trimester AND being subjected to the allied bombing later giving birth to far more individuals claiming to be transgender than observed before or after. The theory was that a surge in the mother’s stress hormones (or whatever else goes with severe stress as one experiences with carpet bombing, etc.) accounted for the biological outcome.

    To what extent, or if, any follow-up research examined this I have no idea (and other research, more needed, suggests gays are the result of particular patterns of toxic family dynamics [particular types of emotional abuse])…but certainly the members of the LGBT community strive to squelch such research & insights from ever seeing the light of day.

    And that opposition to further research is prima facie indication that the LGBT community probably knows of more underlying reasons for gender identify confusion than they disclose (after all, they’ve got a prime interest)…and instead actively squelch such research. If there wasn’t anything to found along the lines of toxic family dynamics (emotional abuse), biochemical factors (e.g. mother’s stress during pregnancy), etc. they’d have no reason to obstruct such research as there’d be nothing to be found.

    Which leads us to consider where things are now:

    June 2008: The Onion, an on-line satirical news site, publishes a parody in which Alzheimer’s patients were asked if they had Alzheimer’s and if they said they didn’t, no further “proof” or other documentation was necessary:

    May 2016, What’s True per Snopes: “The Departments of Justice and Education’s respective civil rights division issued significant guidance to schools about transgender students and Title IX; according to that guidance, no student would be asked to “prove” or otherwise document their gender identity; adherence to Title IX was ” a condition of receiving Federal funds.””

    One wonders how many disturbed/confused children are not only being denied needed help, but who have a mental health condition(s) that is (are) being exacerbated & nurtured by such accommodations that, because the child is young, might respond to competent treatment if such were permitted…

    Where its coming from/what’s reinforcing this sort of thing?:


    WHAT IS TRUE FOR YOU is what you have observed yourself.
    And when you lose that you have lost everything.
    What is personal integrity?
    Personal integrity is knowing what you know –
    What you know is what you know –
    And to have the courage to know and say what you have observed.
    And that is integrity
    And there is no other integrity.

    Of course we can talk about honor, truth, all these things,
    These esoteric terms.
    But I think they’d all be covered very well
    If what we really observed was what we observed,
    That we took care to observe what we were observing,
    That we always observed to observe.

    And not necessarily maintaining a skeptical attitude,
    A critical attitude, or an open mind.
    But certainly maintaining sufficient personal integrity
    And sufficient personal belief and confidence in self
    And courage that we can observe what we observe
    And say what we have observed.

    Nothing in Dianetics and Scientology is true for you
    Unless you have observed it
    And it is true according to
    your observation.
    That is all.

  7. M. Scott Peck described the inclination of the mentally disturbed–those of a particularly toxic nature to those around them–to struggle valiantly to preserve their mental health disorder and associated psychological defense mechanisms in his book, “People of the Lie…”

    An outspoken proportion of the LGBT community, those obstructing real research into the causes of such conditions, tend to also display the kind of personality M. S. Peck described.

  8. John B(),

    Any change of name/email results in a “new user”, and all new users go to moderation automatically. Now that I’ve clear it, you can use it again (with the exact spelling).

  9. Ken,

    I wanted to thank you so much for posting the Peck book a while back in another thread. I ordered it and my wife proceeded to steal it and read it before I could, and then she ordered a bunch of his other books too.

  10. I’m waiting for a picture of Brigg’s in a dress to go along with the posts on transgender. (Researchers say pictures are very powerful…..)

    “A person whose gender is in opposition to biology is said to be transgender.” That should read “confused” or “mentally ill”.

    This exit from reality will in the future result in paranoid schizophrenics being declared “normal”, not medicated and a very poor outcome for the country.

    At this point, my guess is most people have simply given up, taken the Soma and are happily saying they are Martians when told to. The only sign of any push-back was schools telling “private school dad” that they did not want mixed sex bathrooms. How long that will last is hard to say.

  11. JMJ: Because unlike yourself, some people care if society descends into madness, leaving the wolves in charge. I fully realize you are currently incapable of understanding how this works and will probably not recognize what happens even after the wolves are eating all your pals, but reality cannot be suppressed or ignored. Ignoring it has consequences and none of these are good ones (think paranoid schizophrenic with dynamite who thinks you’re spying on him—after all, denying reality is now normal). Please, though, go on living in your unicorns and fairies world believing the unbelievable. It matters not to you what damage you do because you are incapable of taking responsibility for it. You live in a magic world—and will until the magic bursts and the party’s over. You and those like you will suffer the most because the magic’s gone—or you’ll be killed still believing that your “friends” were right and some conspiracy caused your “friends” to turn on you. Any way you look at it, as long as you’re outside reality, you will never understand. It remains to be seen if reality can slap you hard enough to bring you back, though at that point, it’s generally too late to change anything. That’s why it matters.

  12. JMJ: Why is this so important to you guys?

    It’s not. Why do they go round town yelling that everyone needs to know, and needs to have an opinion about it?

  13. It’s kind of ridiculous to suggest that people who feel that they identify more as members of the opposite sex should be labelled as “mentally ill”, if at the same time you believe in invisible gods, angels, virgin births, miracles and similar delusional fantasies.

  14. swordfishtrombone: Comparing apples and oranges again, though in your world we can probably declare an apple to be an orange and force everyone to say it’s so. It’s not saying that people identify more as members of the opposite sex, it’s saying they ARE members and must be treated as such. When it was “identifying with”, we called it cross-dressing and it was considered a minor mental illness (neurotic one, not psychotic). It is delusional to deny reality. On the other hand, no one has proven that gods, angels, virgin births (which occur on a regular basis now, I would point out), miracles, etc are not real. These do not conflict with reality. If one declares they ARE God, then that’s a delusion. After all, people believe in love, caring, art, etc, are of which are just as much “delusional fantasies” as religion. So unless you are saying that only that which can be proven—OH WAIT. You can’t prove a person identifies with a different sex. You must go by and indulge their “belief”. It’s not like sex, which can be biologically confirmed. This is fantasy, exactly the kind you are knocking over on the religious side.

  15. JMJ – Why so important?

    Because the policy is based on emotional reasoning and junk/pseudo-science (what Briggs includes as “scientism”) — and there are some good indicators and even some research (suppressed, but not completely down & out) that shows the orientations being “protected” are themselves very aberrant and subject to treatment/healing. That ‘s a kind of legal precedent that carries over to other areas of law, both in law-making and in case-by-case trial decisions.

    So, basically, damaged people by being accommodated are being denied treatment options (a perverse “accommodation”). Not to mention the damage this can do to “straight” kids too young and thus ill-equipped to comprehend what they’re being exposed to…

    Its a fundamental perversion of truth to forcibly impose one to accommodate another’s treatable defect/illness as “normal” AND deny them treatment options (by pretending the issue warranting treatment is somehow “normal” to the extent that their free-will choice to individually consider such options is denied by suppressing those options), to include warping the minds of youth incapable of fully comprehending such distortions of reality as distortions.

  16. Sheri,
    If we’re going to bandy terms about let’s be accurate. Let’s not exaggerate.
    The problem of sexual perversion may have a clinical diagnosis but psychosis wouldn’t be it because it is not defined in that way. Delusion doesn’t quite fit because although people might claim to ‘feel’ like a different sex, they are not claiming that they ‘are’ a different sex unless enabled by the medical profession and society to start to believe their sex has changed.

    I am thinking of the case where the man left his family and decided to act like an eight year old. This is delusional. It is not rational. It is not psychotic nor does it constitute paranoid schizophrenia. It is important to be accurate if these terms are to be banded about.

    The diagnosis of schizophrenia is a careful process undertaken by psychiatrists
    and two of the clinical features are delusions and psychoses.
    These are both clearly defined.
    It can be with or without paranoia.
    Paranoia is the state of believing you are right and not accepting the possibility that you are wrong. It has nothing to do with the ‘carry on’ idea of infamy infamy or persecution complex.

    For example to enable oneself to perform a nerve racking task it might be necessary to ‘delude oneself’ I’m thinking of public speaking or taking a test. For me, skiing a black diamond. I call that delusion. It is not delusion of the type that enables a diagnosis of schizophrenia. This type of delusion involves the self evidently false claims about anything which the patient believes and to the extent that it controls their life. For example thinking they are Jesus or thinking that snakes were put into their body by their wicked Aunt as one patient believed years ago.
    Psychosis refers to hallucinations of visual or auditory nature.
    Other symptoms include sleep disturbance and other neuroses.

    Mantra chanting about wolves and society being eaten isn’t a very rational either. If you say it enough times it still won’t be true!

  17. Joy: Yes, believing you are male when you’re female IS delusional. If they only “feel” this, then why are we letting them in the opposite bathroom?
    You do understand that delusions ARE psychoses? It’s a part of the definition—or it was before reality was outlawed. It’s not paranoid schizophrenia, nor did I say it was. I am not “bandying about these terms”. They are what psychology used to call things before reality was outlawed.
    I am NOT diagnosing schizophrenia and I’m not going there. You clearly do NOT understand or did not read what I wrote. This is why I don’t respond to you. I’m finished with you again for now. Strung together ideas that have nothing to do with what I wrote are not worth reading or answering.

    (Apologies for putting this in the wrong post first….)

  18. @ Sheri:

    Delusion: “An idiosyncratic belief or impression maintained despite being contradicted by reality or rational argument, typically as a symptom of mental disorder.” (Oxford dictionary)

    Sounds a bit like religion to me.

  19. Swordfishtrombone: Rather than read a dictionary and try to use that definition to cover a complex discipline like psychiatry, perhaps try looking at what actual psychiatry/psychology says (one day we can have a fun time playing “Use the Dictionary to prove anything, but I don’t have time now)
    The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders says “Delusions are fixed beliefs that are not amenable to change in light of conflicting evidence […] Delusions are deemed bizarre if they are clearly implausible and not understandable to same-culture peers and do not derive from ordinary life experiences. […]” (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).
    Religious beliefs are commonly held in society. People can believe in religion and then reject it, especially when it cramps their style. Delusional people never give up believing in the delusion, even if it cramps their style. Generally, they must be medicated to suppress the delusional behaviour. You can’t medicate religious people and suppress the religion.

    This is a good look at why religion and delusion are not the same to people looking at something other than the dictionary: (Sims is a professor of psychiatry—you can google it if you don’t trust me.)

  20. The reason that belief in God is not considered delusional is because it is not self evidently false. The belief does not result in reduced function or general health problems either, quite the opposite is true.

    In the case of more bizarre beliefs as displayed in some countries, they are generally accepted as normal beliefs and they are accepted as part of the faith of that nation.

    I would not be so rude as to say that an atheist was deluded because they were so sure of their belief. Until everybody knows for sure then everybody is holding a belief in the absence of proof. Evidence is quite another thing.

  21. @ Sheri:

    The stuff you quote from “The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” sounds virtually the same as the dictionary definition I quoted, apart from being less succinct.

  22. “Delusions are deemed bizarre if they are clearly implausible and not understandable to same-culture peers and do not derive from ordinary life experiences.”

    This is not what your dictionary definition said and this part is considered vital to the definition by the field that created the definition( as noted by: “typically as a symptom of mental disorder.”). Religion is excluded, except by the radical fringe of psychiatry and psychology and very short definitions in the dictionary. If you wish to use radical fringe ideology as the correct definitions, I shall oblige you in the future and use only fringe, radical answers when addressing you. No problem—it actually could be fun.

  23. So religion is exempt simply because a lot of people believe it, cannot be disproven (true of most ideas), and is culturally acceptable. Religion bemuses me intellectually, but there is generally very little harm, and often good that comes from it (people doing good deeds, being at peace etc). So no harm, no foul. Possibly more good than harm, so heck why not?

    If people are transgender, who exactly gets harmed? No, really? It would certainly seem to be delusional to a degree, but I am sure they recognise their sex organs, so reality is not denied, but it simply doesn’t “feel right” for some reason. To me that seems like a mental anomoly (I wouldn’t like to call it anything stronger than that), but it cannot be disproven that they feel that way. I can’t imagine that most transgender (if not all) do this for fun. The negative reaction from society in general should be enough to convince any rational person of that fact.

    Is it something that needs to be treated? Back to the no harm, no foul issue. If the trasngender person is happy (unfortunately suicide rates are very much higher amongst that group – different story again) then why should they? A lot of people here with zero experience in the matter asserting the harm caused by this state, but show us evidence please. The higher suicide rate is something that might be discussed – but is the suicide rate because of the condition, or because of the pressures of a society dealing poorly with this group of people?

    People believe a lot of mildly delusional things about themselves … especially those who are overly confident. I, on the other hand, know my bum is big in my jeans, but I’m a bloke, so whatev…

  24. I agree with Bulldust. but would add that the suicide rate (in my reckoning) is as likely to be a feature of the same condition rather than pure social pressure. So it should be considered a syndrome which includes a collection of common symptoms and signs. I agree that there seems nothing inherently attractive for a normal heterosexual person to make them want to self mutilate or self harm. Of course choice and will comes into play but it does for non pathological problems such as obesity dangerous sports, body piercing and tattooing, substance abuse.

    predatory behaviour and criminal violence and sexual abuse are separate and should not be mixed in the rather small issue about transexuals.

    I see no good reason why men should be allowed to use women’s toilets as that news item suggests which was linked above. I can’t say it enough that it doesn’t look like genuine law making to ease the convenience of .07% (surely inflated) of the population. It is crazy to push such an idea. We don’t have this over here. Disabled toilet use is the way forward. I’ve known men let women use the men’s room when the queues were too long and wait outside for women to use the loos.

    This is manufactured trouble on behalf of who I can’t imagine but it looks like more subversion. The public are sensible and won’t tolerate a man saying “I’m going to use this toilet because I feel like a woman” Some laws have to be changed because society doesn’t accept them. In England Poll Tax is a good example. Once enough people have had enough PC and Hate speech laws become unenforceable.

  25. Bulldust: Yes, that’s right. Religion is except because it is a wide-spread belief—for centuries through many cultures. Unlike gender fluidity, which is a new PC delusion.

    Mental illness is not about “who gets harmed”. You, I assume, would approve of letting a person sit in a room, claim he is a ancient prince and he must be waited on and taken care of in a royal fashion. What’s the harm? First, it’s not true and it’s not reality. As society more and more ignores reality, things get ugly. However, since you obviously know more than an entire discipline and want to remove “mentally ill” from the language, so be it. Henceforth, no one shall be called “mentally ill”. No depression, no manic depression, no anti-social behaviours, no autism, none (you can ask for mood altering drugs, just not because there’s anything wrong with you but because you want them). No special treatment in schools for the autistic, the slow learners, etc. Why call anti-social behaviour “wrong”. No more. Everyone is equal and a-okay.

    “I can’t imagine that most transgender (if not all) do this for fun. The negative reaction from society in general should be enough to convince any rational person of that fact.” You just argued that pedophelia is NOT choice. No one would want to be a pedophile by choice, right? They’re beat up in jail, they’re pictured on the internet. No one does it for “fun”. It’s just who they are and it’s not their fault and we should stop persecuting them.

    You’re also arguing that people who are mentally ill should be allowed to live in the sewers and eat garbage. What kind of person argues that it is the right and moral way to have people living—eating garbage, living in the sewers? Yet, it harms no one. So leave them there. Many “street people” (we even have a quaint term for the group) claim to like their lot in life. Only do-gooders think we should get them off the street.

    Drug addicts—why treat them? If you put them in a room and feed them drugs, they harm no one. So let’s stop treating drug addicts and just feed them the drugs and keep them happy. We can have drug hotels where they live together in harmony. It’s all about no harm, everyone happy.

    Legalize protestitution—that harms no one. Could employ a lot more people if we legalized protestitution and think of the boost in tax revenue.

  26. @ Bulldust: “Religion bemuses me intellectually, but there is generally very little harm, and often good that comes from it”

    September 11?

    But I agree with most of your comments.

  27. What a lot of mixed notions. Premises must be established in order to proceed to the next step and reach agreement. How did 9/11 creep in?
    1 Whether a thing is pathological.
    2 Pathologies are harmful to the individual suffering the pathology. That is a given because of the definition of pathology. (Degree of harms vary.)
    3 Whether a pathology is harmful to others.
    4 Whether religious belief is delusional.
    5 Whether religion is a force for good in the world. ( This is so old and well trodden that one either decides to magnify singular events of evil or whether to see the evidence all around and consider the billions no trillions of single acts of kindness and their knock on effect. The nurturing of conscience, of virtues, the charity and benevolence of men which has been forgotten.)
    Dick Whittington’s charitable property investments still helps the poor in parts of London today. (He believed a cat told him to “turn again Whittington, thrice Lord Mayor of London.”)

    If people live well together they don’t need help from the state. The biggest threats to those who want everything controlled by the state are those which promote free, voluntary and unforced social cohesion.

    The old worldly wise cynical Yorkshire saying is a luxury afforded only by the old man in his armchair who’s already played his part.
    “see al’ hear all say nout,
    eat al’ sup’ al’ pay nout,
    and if ever thou does ‘out for nout,
    always do it for the’ sen’
    but although I love it, it is actually some people’s life attitude. The man who first said it wouldn’t approve I bet.

    6 With respect to crimes in particular those feared by ‘roll out’ of transsexuality, (which I don’t agree is happening) courts decides whether a crime was committed by the accused given the definition of the crime and the evidence presented.
    There is no clemency, no sympathy involved in that part of the process.
    The sentencing is where there is consideration of circumstance etc. The crime is the crime. The sentence is the sentence.

  28. Sheri – quite honestly, I find it hard to find a single line in your comment which isn’t a fallacious verballing of my comments. Clearly there is a mental component to transgender people as the issues stem from their not feeling right in their bodies, so they say. You are quite seriously spinning out of orbit bringing in pedophilia….

    But let’s play counterfactual… in a society in which sex with a human as young as 10, for the sake of argument, is acceptable, clearly pedophilia would have a different definition than in one in which 16 is the age of consent, or 18 or whatever. So clearly, what society considers to be a problem hinges on what is cultrally acceptable, presumably by the majority, or at least by the majority writing and voting for the laws. Hey, there’s countries in which displaying christmas decorations is a criminal offence.

    So what we consider acceptable, criminal and even a mental illness, varies depending on cultual norms. Some people clearly have issues with those norms changing over time. Some would rather stay attached to norms from a millenia or two ago. But I would like to fall back to my simplistic “no harm, no foul.” If no one is being harmed, where’s the problem? What happened to liberty and the pursuit of happiness?

    Oh, and the PC garbage, I am as sick of it as the next person, trust me. Living in Australia we have a lower tolerance for PC than the EU or US. BTW I think the suggestion of the handicapped bathrooms is a good one. They are almost invariably unisex, so that pretty much covers everything.

  29. Bulldust: I just report the definitions, I don’t make them. Pedophilia is a sexual orientation just like hetero, homo, bi and etc. It is what a person FEELS and should not be dismissed by those who claim feelings are what is a valid way to live.

    I agree that pedophilia is a societal idea. There are 6 year old children married off in some countries, if you believe the news media. My point was this is about FEELINGS (yes, I have to capitalize this, because I FEEL like doing so) and if people feel an attraction to children, why are we denying them this? We allow them to use whatever bathroom they want and marry whomever (though not yet whatever) they want. Pedophilia only harms children because we tell them it does, assuming no physical damage. We can just as easily convince children that sex with adults is normal because we did this with same sex sex and now with restrooms, declaring gender is fluid. We CAN do this and if we are to be fair, we must.

    The idea of liberty and the pursuit of happiness was crushed by the pro-gay people, the president and his inability to understand privacy in restrooms while allowing the murder of babies via abortion on the basis of privacy, and when activists declared religion off-limits and under fire, to be cut out of all life. It was crushed by the “tolerant” ones. Any other questions?

    The entire question here is “Is the denial of reality, as in there are no “real” males and females, only what you FEEL like you are” harmless? I would say yes. Because then you cannot declare any behaviour based on feelings as wrong. FEEL allows everything—there is a definite harm.

    Agreed the handicapped or “family” restroom solved the problem, but again, that was not enough for the “tolerant” who demanded men be allowed in restrooms with little girls. There was a fair solution, it was just rejected by the “tolerant’ who demand reality be crushed and they get their way on everything.

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