8-year-old “trans advocate” releases book: “It’s not something we can just switch off.”

For the former child star at the age of ten, the experience of going from a “neighborhood kid” to a famous TV personality overnight was life-altering. Cast on a hit TV series, he recalls the reaction after the show’s debut. “When I went outside the next day, my life was different . . . And the first thing that I knew, ‘Holy Toledo, I’m famous!’.” …Celebrities become accustomed to looking into a crowd and seeing the adoration in their eyes. “You know they know who you are.”

–Donna Rockwell, PhD, and David Giles, PhD. Being a Celebrity: A Phenomenology of Fame

“Who they are,” in the case of famous trans kids? Trans forever. And the message they’re selling is: That won’t change (even though decades of research studies beg to differ –and even the top pediatric gender specialists admit they don’t know which kids will persist in believing they are the opposite sex).

Celebrity Willa truly who i was

We don’t have a disorder & you can’t change us

UPDATE June 6, 2016: Commenter atranswidow tells us this:

The Maltese Commissioner for Children has joined in the official praise of Willa and Willa’s parents, but has become concerned about the effect of using a child as a transgender symbol. The Commissioner’s office has issued a statement  which calls for the general public to be sensitive to Willa when publishing their reactions, saying that the family and child are vulnerable because of the controversial aspect of the story written by Willa.

The Commissioner felt the need to add that ”there is also the possibility that future complications may arise because in later life some children may once more return to their gender at birth and it is known that some cases have happened”.

Ask Transgender Europe (TGEU, Twitter: @TGEUorg) why they are using an 8-year-old child in a PR campaign.


Like so much else related to the trans-kid/teen phenomenon, the (abundant) anecdotal and (sparse) research evidence we have about the negative impact of fame on child and teen celebrities has been utterly ignored. (Maybe not so surprising, since actually scrutinizing the effect of media attention on trans kids would require the media to scrutinize itself.)

I don’t think I need to list all the former child celebrities who have been buffeted by troubled waters as they moved into adulthood. Now we have a whole crop of famous transkids and teens. There’s Devina, the 6-year-old “trans princess” and her family’s successful reality show.  Media darling  Jazz Jennings probably cannot go out in public anywhere in the world without being recognized;  being the most-celebrated “trans teen” on the planet is parental/societal approval (quite literally) on steroids.

But while Jazz Jennings is at the mega-fame end of the spectrum, the young people being used in political ads and trans activist campaigns are in just as bright a spotlight.

Willa happy as a girl

Even the young people featured in glossy magazine features (like the 14-year-old adopted survivor of fetal alcohol syndrome whose double mastectomy was covered in the San Diego Union Tribute a couple months ago) become icons for the cause.  They are being used to promote a product—that product being: gender is innate, immutable, unchanging. No matter how young, a trans kid won’t change their mind about who they are.

The child pictured in the YouTube clips in this post is Willa Naylor, a Maltese  “trans activist” for Transgender Europe (TGEU) who was featured in a 4thWaveNow post last November. Willa was already a celebrity last year, when a gender identity law in Malta “dedicated to” Willa  was passed. The Maltese law is considered “the most comprehensive” in Europe, even allowing for gender/sex to be left undefined on birth certificates.

Willa’s fame is on the rise. Just two days ago, the child—now 8 years old—was interviewed by the Times of Malta about a self-authored storybook called “Truly Willa.” The book has been available on Amazon since March.

Civil liberties minister Helena Dalli said: “I hope this book will help other children in Willa’s situation feel empowered. For adults, who can sometimes be prejudiced in their views about how life should be, this book shows that we do not choose how we’re born and opens our eyes to other realities.”

There it is: “born that way.” I wonder if Transgender Europe—or for that matter, the US State Department, one of the key funders of TGEU via the Global Equality Fund—can point me to the research proving a person is “born” transgender? They shouldn’t have too much trouble finding data suggesting an alternative outcome: That Willa, if left alone to grow, change, and explore, might grow up to be a gay man as most gender dysphoric boys do.

The Malta Times article includes a video interview with Willa and parents. In it, Willa tells us a bit about “Truly Willa,” and says she hopes it will “help a lot of kids and [that] a lot of people buy it.”

celebrity willa malta times

To their credit, the interviewers in the video do ask mom and dad about the possible impact of all this media attention: “Do you worry that this level of exposure could be difficult for a young girl?”

“I think at first, we weren’t people who wanted to jump into the media, but then it just sort of happened. She’s always wanted to share her story…I don’t worry about it too much. Obviously we’re very sensible about which media we allow her to do…It’s wonderful for her self confidence….that’s the reason she speaks publicly. She wants to be the voice for the children. She gives voice to the people who’ve gone through similar experiences whether they’re children or adults….that’s empowering for her, and now it’s not something we can just switch off because now she wants to advocate for these people.

celebrity willa parents

And indeed, Willa is advocating for quite a few of “these people,” as the Malta Times tells us.

Their fight led to the Gender Identity, Gender Expression & Sexual Characteristics Act , made law in Malta in April 2015, being dedicated to her and she was the first child invited into parliament to watch the vote as it passed into law.

Willa has a YouTube channel, is a “family outreach officer” for Gender Liberation, and is involved in several media projects for Transgender Europe, including radio, television, and Internet ad campaigns.

celebrity willa advocacy

There’s also a website featuring Willa’s new book and information about the political advocacy the whole family is involved in. The site also provides the back story on Willa’s social transition:

Meet Willa Naylor. She is an 8 year old trans advocate from Malta in Europe, and is determined to make a difference in the world. She was assigned male at birth and despite raising her as most parents would raise any male child, her parents could see she had issues with the gender that was being placed on her. Amongst preferring to play with girls, care for younger children, choosing more stereotypically girl related clothes and toys, her parents were also very concerned by her lack of socialising with other children, crippling shyness, anxiety driven temper tantrums and the trauma she seemed to experience on having to leave the family home.

Stereotypically girl related clothes and toys,” indeed. And the behavioral and psychological issues are used here to obviously promote the idea that the only solution for this child was to put him on the road to social transition (which very often leads to later medical transition).

Willa is featured on several other websites, including GLSEN , where I was struck by something s/he said about social transition:

Even the pain of having to go to school with really short hair. I felt like a girl with my hair taken from me. I know people treat people like me not very nice, and that needs to stop. People need to understand what hurts trans children and what situations they might have gone through. I think kids like me need books like mine to show them they are not alone, and society doesn’t have to win. You can be who you are, who you know you really are!
Why did Willa, as a boy, have to go to school with “really short hair”? Who said he had to? In so many of these trans kid stories, the child’s resistance to gendered expectations seems to play a major role in why they decide they are the opposite sex.  Maybe if Willa had been allowed to have long hair, he would have felt he could be who he “really was” as a gender-defiant boy.

As for Willa’s book, it’s aimed at children of all ages:

This is a journey of what it means to be an affirmed transgender child, created by a transgender child, with her parents support. The book also has simplified quotes at the top of each page for the benefit of any younger readers, with the main paragraph having more detail, so children of different reading levels can still read along.

Coincidentally, the parent-run Transgender Trend has just launched a campaign in the UK to protest the release of a new children’s story book (“for ages 0-5”) which promotes the idea that young children can be born in the wrong body. Unlike “Truly Willa,” the book (published by BloomsburyKids) “Introducing Teddy” was written by an adult, not an 8-year-old child. Indeed, who would protest a book written by a child? Maybe this will be the start of a new trend by trans activists—more books authored by trans kids themselves.

celebrity willa truly willa

Celebrity does a huge number on adults. What might the effect be on kids and teens?

In their paper Being a Celebrity: The phenomenology of fame, Rockwell & Giles describe some of the tensions famous adults have experienced:

The celebrity experiences being put on a pedestal, “and there are people who love to knock us off the pedestal.” Paradoxically, along with all the adulation—gratuitous and genuine, no matter what the celebrity does, someone, somewhere, will be disappointed. In order to create a balanced life, famous persons struggle to maintain their own perspective. [Fame makes you] extremely vulnerable. And you can really take it to heart and get your feelings tremendously hurt. I stopped reading e-mail very quickly because I couldn’t take some of the negative stuff . I wanted to write and say, “You don’t know who I am. Why are you doing this?” And it was all about who they thought I was . . . You have to be very thick-skinned.

How thick-skinned can a child be when the inevitable tumble from the pedestal takes place? How thick-skinned should anyone want them to be?

Obviously, Willa’s parents—and the parents of other celebrity trans kids–think they are doing the right thing by their kids; they likely believe they are also doing a good thing for the world at large. But do they ever wonder whether the very act of setting their children up as role models will make these kids feel they cannot ever question what they’re doing?

Celebrity aside, no one is receiving grants to study the impact of social media, peer pressure, or parental approval on the rate of persistence in trans kids’ believing they are the opposite sex—influences brought to bear on all young trans kids, not just those who are in the media spotlight. How much more intense must the pressure be for the ones who are put on pedestals as paragons and proof of Innate Gender Identity?

Celebrity Willa Gender ID bill

How could a kid who has been made a media star, who is constantly praised for their bravery in proclaiming they are the opposite sex, have an easy time switching back after all of that, no matter how much they wanted it?

Transgender activists have very cleverly, and very effectively,  pinned their cause to the coattails of the gay and lesbian liberation movements. But there is one thing the pre-trans LGB movement didn’t have: Eight-year-old proto-gay/lesbian child celebrities bought and paid for by deep-pocketed lobbying groups.  Given both the anecdotal and  research evidence that most gender dysphoric kids grow up to be gay or lesbian, the LGB movement would actually have had a pretty strong case for such a child-focused campaign.  You could take the trans activist kid videos we now see and simply replace the narration with:

“Here’s little Johnny who likes to play Barbies and dress up in fairy costumes with all the girls in his kindergarten class. Johnny is likely to grow up to be gay, and if you don’t accept this right now he’s going to kill himself.”

Or how about:

 “Here’s little Judy, always climbing trees and refusing to wear dresses and hair bows. She’ll likely be a lesbian woman—unless you force her into that dress, which will guarantee she self harms.”

In the halcyon days of the gay/lesbian liberation movement—which was and still is driven by the theory that sexual orientation is innate–it would have been seen as highly inappropriate to use young children to further a political aim. Building a PR campaign around anything remotely related to a child’s present or future sexuality, puberty, or body parts would have rightly been seen as unethical.

Why isn’t anyone outside the gender-critical blogosphere asking whether it’s appropriate to use “trans kids” as media shills for the transition-or-die transgender rights movement?

 

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41 thoughts on “8-year-old “trans advocate” releases book: “It’s not something we can just switch off.”

  1. 8 years old – would you trust an eight year old to make decisions about your finances or the raising of other children or give and 8 year old charge of a 100k piece of jewelry – I think not – cuz they’re 8 years old – but this this is ok really? It’s hard to even know how to respond to this post

    Liked by 9 people

  2. Any parent that would enable nonsense like this should be cited for child endangerment. If a child wants this so badly, they can wait until they’re 18.

    Liked by 7 people

  3. I totally disagree, I grew up in an era where for me to live as myself meant my parents wanting to commit me to a mental institution with the agreement of the medical professionals because I didn’t conform to society standards. I have waited 45 years to finally see that society has progressed with enough positive attitudes towards non-conformity to live as the woman I have felt I was when I was 7 years old. Most of these kids know who they are, who they want to be, how they want to live their lives and fortunately have parents who have those positive attitudes to realise what is best for their child’s health and well-being. Parents don’t force gender choice on their children, they are just open-minded enough to identify serious tell-tale signs that their children are not happy with their biological gender and only want the best for them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Highlighting an often missed point among trans advocates – to be transgender *is* to conform to societal standards. To not conform would be to not transition.

      Liked by 10 people

      • You speak with a great deal of authority on something you have no personal experience of. I’d like to highlight an often missed point among the people on this page. To transition is not to conform to societal standards. People do not transition because their gender presentation does not match their body. They transition because they know they will feel more at home in their bodies with different primary or secondary sex characteristics. That’s it. How a transitioning person presents is another matter entirely, and one that is not determined by their physical body, either before or after transition.

        Perhaps what you’re seeing here is not so much that we are trying to conform, but rather that people put a great deal of pressure on us to conform. After I began my transition people started assuming that I wanted to play baseball and talk about power tools and stuff like that. I wanted no such thing, never did, and the constant pressure to act “like a man” now that I look like one is maddening. I just want a body that doesn’t confuse me. Reading this blog breaks my heart, because I see parents who care deeply for their children and yet they fail to step back from their own experiences and attempt to empathize with an experience different from their own. The only person who can know themselves is that person. Everyone else, including activists, clinicians, *and parents* should be willing to admit they don’t know everything about the internal experiences of another individual.

        You will never know what dysphoria feels like. It would be nice, though, if you tried. Please do not attribute motivations to us when you cannot empathize with us.

        Like

      • “You speak with a great deal of authority on something you have no personal experience of”

        You make assumptions with no basis in reality and your comment is a mass of contradictions. Please stop telling me what I know, have experienced or how I think.

        “The only person who can know themselves is that person. Everyone else, including activists, clinicians, *and parents* should be willing to admit they don’t know everything about the internal experiences of another individual.”

        I suggest self reflecting on that before attempting to tell other people all about themselves.

        I also suggest fathoming how the actions and statements of those in the trans community – including your own transitioning to a “body that doesn’t confuse” you – helps perpetuate the “great deal of pressure” on you – and others – to conform. The actions and statements of individuals within the trans community have far wider reaching implications than just the individual or trans community.

        “and yet they fail to step back from their own experiences and attempt to empathize with an experience different from their own.”

        I think you will find that for the most part, the opposite is true. People are frequently forced to over-empathise, often at the expense of their own situation/beliefs/values.

        Liked by 1 person

      • For tuxedomax —

        You know, tuxmax, there just appear to be SO many ways of being trans out there. They do not all appear to involve the level of body dysmorphia that you are describing. I’m not negating your experience; I’m just saying it doesn’t appear to be universal in the world of those who identify as trans. (Much less in the world of nonconforming KIDS who think they “might” be trans.)

        When every article about “diagnosing” kids as trans relies on stereotypes and rarely on traditional dysphoria, what are we to think, in terms of what is driving the diagnoses? There are too many stories of parents deciding their kid is trans based on toy preferences and clothing selections. That’s apparently not you, but … that is the norm in the world of pediatric gender diagnosis these days.

        I assume you are an adult, which means … you get to make adult choices. And since you don’t talk about being a parent, I assume you’re not one, which means you, too, are speaking about something you have no personal experience of. I don’t give a shit if my kid conforms to social standards. I do care if she does stuff to her body that’s going to cause her grief in the long run. Use of T to change secondary sexual characteristics is undeniably an experimental course of action. There’s just not the research available out there that would assure me, as a mom (who has already walked through hell with her kid due to stuff far predating the gender stuff), that the long-term risk/benefit ratio makes sense. There are anecdotes. There is not RESEARCH. Some parents are OK with that situation. I’ve had enough life experiences with the trendiness of the med/psych/pharm system, and enough knowledge of medical history, to make me … not OK with that situation.

        So as a parent who’s responsible for a teen, financially and otherwise, right now it’s a bridge too far. When the teen becomes financially independent, she, too, will be empowered to make adult decisions, and I’ll deal with whatever she decides whenever the time comes. Right now she’s in a good place, and whatever level of uncomfortabless her nonconformity produces (and I know it DOES produce some), it is not of a degree that I would even label depression.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Your parents did not accept that you were a boy who liked to do and wear things that they believed only girls should do and wear. You’ve grown up to be trans. If your parents had accepted and supported you, there’s every chance you could have grown up to be a happy adult not dependent on cancer-causing chemicals. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS BIOLOGICAL GENDER.

      Liked by 8 people

    • Lesley, I think when it comes to kids “knowing who they are,” kids definitely know what games they like to play, what kinds of toys they like to play with, and they know their own clothing and hair preferences.

      It is impossible to change one’s sex, however it seems that trans kids are being led to believe they can do so. Young kids believe what adult authority figures tell them: Santa will arrive on the roof via flying reindeer, Jesus walked on water and parted the sea, their father (who is serving time in prison) is in Africa building homes for underprivileged children.

      So when a young boy says “Mom, I like Barbies and dresses and I wish I was a girl,” and his parents and doctors respond with, “Yes, you are absolutely right, you should have been born a girl, you have the wrong body and doctors are going to fix your body and turn it into a girl’s body to match your girl’s brain,” the child of course believes this.

      Why can’t the parent step up and say “just because you like these things doesn’t mean you are a girl. Boys can wear the whatever clothes they want, can play with whatever toys they want; you are perfect just the way you are?” Allowing kids to defy stereotypes is progressive; medicalizing nonconformity is not. Telling boys there is something wrong with them if they prefer to play “fashion show” or telling girls they need to see a doctor for medicine if they want to cut their hair short is so backward. How some people believe telling kids there is something wrong with their bodies based upon their toy and clothing preferences as progressive I will never understand.

      I’m so sorry your parents wanted you committed — that must have been awful. But I wish you could see that telling young kids they have defective bodies and must have medical treatment to become “fixed” is the same song, second verse to what you went through.

      Just because a young child knows what he likes to play with and how he likes to look and dress doesn’t necessarily mean he or she “knows” they have the “wrong” body. If kids believe they are trapped in the wrong body it is because adults have taught them they are not allowed to behave in ways which society considers inappropriate for their sex. If a child believes a doctor can “fix” their body and turn them into the opposite sex it is because adults have lead them to believe this.

      Young children believe what adult authority figures tell them. Teach kids that their bodies and minds are just fine as they are, teach kids it is impossible to change one’s sex, but that it’s perfectly fine to wear whatever they want to wear and play with whatever toys they choose. Teach kids they don’t need to be “fixed” just because they don’t conform to sex stereotypes.

      Liked by 9 people

  4. On the topic of media publicity of transgender children, the WaPo recently ran a story by the parents of a transgender four-year old. There is a form where readers can submit comments; selected responses will be published. (Some responses already are).

    It appears that they want a real name, as well as the the commenter’s location. It’s quite possible they will contact you to verify that you are who you say you are; I used to write many letters to the editor, and many papers do in fact call or email to verify that you submitted the comment and perhaps ask one or two other questions. It’s quite possible that if I use a made-up name and that is found out, I won’t be published. For that reason, I have not submitted a response, though I would love to.

    If other readers of this blog want to submit a brief response (papers, particularly the WaPo, are much more likely to publish very concisely worded reactions), I encourage you to do so. It would be wonderful if WaPo published the name of this site. I can hope, right? 😛

    The article can be accessed here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/education/wp/2016/06/03/parents-of-transgender-child-our-magnetic-5-year-old-is-not-a-threat-to-anyone/

    Like

  5. “Celebrity does a huge number on adults. What might the effect be on kids and teens?”

    Maybe we could ask all those Disney kids who’ve gone off the rails or who are train wrecks waiting to happen.

    #TransTrendIsOrwellian
    #PeakPeakTrans

    Liked by 6 people

  6. The closest we have to a “trans kid” later life story is that of Joe Halliday, born Joel with ambiguous genitalia, and socially transitioned, with much legal wrangling and media fuss, to Joella as a child. Now living as male after never feeling quite comfortable with living as a girl, and requesting a DNA test.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I would describe this as an “intersex kid” story. While trans activists and their supporters have tried to blur the lines between the two, physical intersex conditions are very different from the experience of not identifying with a body that’s typical of your sex.

        Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks for the name correction, and sorry to Joe if he’s reading.

      I do think there are some interesting and relevant points in his story. His parents knew he was male (he is an XY male with serious abdominal deformities, rather than a genuine intersex person), but were advised/encouraged to transition him, regardless of his own future wishes.

      The media attention his case received must have made it much harder for Joe himself to speak out, when he started questioning his adopted female identity. If Willa (or Jazz Jennings or any of the others) decides to desist in future, this is what they will come up against.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. While looking at the On Demand options for the Sundance Channel I saw a TransGeneration series offered. It was a documentary done in 2005. Why 11 years later it is still available means it is still popular or maybe is agenda driven?

    Like

  8. The Maltese Commissioner for Children has joined in the official praise of Willa and Willa’s parents, but has become concerned about the effect of using a child as a transgender symbol. The Commissioners office has issued a statement in which calls for the general public to be sensitive to Willa when publishing their reactions saying that the family and child are vulnerable because of the controversial aspect of the story written by Willa.

    The Commissioner felt the need to add that ”there is also the possibility that future complications may arise because in later life some children may once more return to their gender at birth and it is known that some cases have happened”.

    http://www.tvm.com.mt/en/news/il-kaz-willa-il-kwilla-willa-naylor-office-of-commissioner-for-children-expresses-concernsnaylor-child-commissioner-expresses-concernsummissarju-tat-tfal-tesprimi-thassib/

    Pretty much the same legitimate concerns that are expressed in this post.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I can’t help feeling the Commissioner for Children could be directing their request toward Willa’s parents instead (and who knows, perhaps they have) – i.e. to think of their own child; shelter their child from the obvious criticism someone who openly advocates *on behalf of others* opens themselves up to. Especially when they present the same misinformation and also fail to acknowledge the “future complications” the Commissioner mentions, etc.

      The parents have a responsibility to protect their child, but short of being “very sensible about which media we allow her to do” (a somewhat meaningless statement), don’t seem to be too concerned with future consequences at all, “now it’s not something we can just switch off because now she wants to advocate for these people.” Hmmm. Whatever the 8 year old wants, huh?

      At least the Commissioner has acknowledged “future complications” and that “some children may once more return to their gender at birth” later in life. However – it feels like a very polite request to shut the eff up lest the child end up damaged (reminiscent of the oft repeated suicide argument used by trans advocates).

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes, what is going to be the effect on Willa when other kids and their parents are bolstered by Willa’s story to transition, and then regret it? What if Willa regrets his and his parent’s decision, knowing he has influenced other children to get surgeries, based on fan mail he’s received? Imagine the guilt this boy will live with, and perhaps public outrage and vilification, when western society hits it’s peak trans moment, and the kiddie transgender empire comes tumbling down. This child, who is barely old enough to read, himself, who no doubt is getting a lot of encouragement, trans theory, and writing and technical assistance from his parents, is being set up, rather than protected, from a devastating public backlash and feelings of guilt in the future.

        Like

  9. This is such exploitation! Whatever happened to children’s books celebrating so-called “tomboys” and boys who want to play with dolls? How did people so quickly forget this is normal child behavior and not “evidence” of transsexualism? Just 5-10 years ago, most normal people would’ve found it ridiculous for parents to make their kids live as the opposite sex based on stereotypes, and yet now anyone who dares challenge this is dismissed as some unscientific bigot. It particularly bothers me that so many of the people in my skeptical, science-based groups have jumped on this bandwagon.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. A key statement in this essay: ” the US State Department, one of the key funders of TGEU via the Global Equality Fund.” Why is our State Department funding this? Why is Obama pushing the end of sex-segregated facilities for women? These are questions that desperately need to be asked. Just as the right-wing used abortion and gay rights to distract people from actual issues, it seems that the liberals are now using transgender to distract people from actual issues. And I would not call our State Department, worldwide purveyors of destabilization and war, liberal!!!!!

    Liked by 4 people

    • I have read from a trans or LGBT group that trans have been quietly carrying out a broad scale campaign to change laws at every level. And no doubt a stealing h campaign to get trans on magazine covers, etc. Much of what trans have done has seemed familiar/similar to how Act Up won its AIDS campaigns. Probably coached by LGBT politicos with Act Up experience. They’ve used a lot of similar rhetoric that the LGBT found “tested” better on the public: framing this as a civil rights issue, trans plagued by right-wing, christian conservative phobias and bigotry, those who are not accepting will cause suicides and murders of trans, born this way, conversion therapy, etc. And then developing huge lists of activist protesters who will appear at a moment’s notice on the home doorstep of anyone who disagrees with them or won’t implement their policies or write a story as they want it written, mobilizing mass campaigns against news agencies or organizations that won’t toe the trans line, organizing mass letter writing campaigns to get people fired who aren’t compliant on the basis of accusations of bigotry and transphobia. LGBT groups are thus able to extract total compliance from every Democratic candidate and media organization. Any Democrat who isn’t rabidly LGBT and constantly beating the LGBT drum in legislatures and on social media risks massive criticism until they knuckle under or lose of campaign contributions. I think the two major parties have been replaced with the NRA and LGBT lobbies. I have no doubt LGBT groups told Dems/Obama, to get LGBT support this fall, they must order the school bathroom rule-change.

      Trans skeptics need to start petitions and letter campaigns on every issue/event.

      Like

      • Whew. This comment is really a bit much, you know?

        “The LGBT”, as you call it, does not exist as a coherent group or entity, and never has. “LGBT” is a label that for the last 20 years, or rather less, has been applied to a political alliance campaigning for social and political changes. At grassroots level this alliance is now beginning to fall apart, as witness, for instance, the calls to ‘Drop the T’, ‘Take the L out of the LGBT’, etc. Meanwhile, in America and Britain at any rate, the campaigning organisations that were set up in the past by lesbians and gay men have very largely ceded control of policy to the ‘Trans’, and in particular to ‘transwomen’. Nowadays they are ‘LGB’ in name only: as witness their signal failure to defend lesbians, in particular, against the virulent attacks now being directed towards us by many male transgender activists: ‘cotton ceiling’ rhetoric, personal abuse and threats directed at known lesbians, invented claims about the prevalence of rape among lesbians, calculated invocations of the ‘predatory lesbian’ stereotype, etc, etc.

        fmnst says: “They’ve used a lot of similar rhetoric that the LGBT found “tested” better on the public: framing this as a civil rights issue, trans plagued by right-wing, christian conservative phobias and bigotry, those who are not accepting will cause suicides and murders of trans, born this way, conversion therapy, etc. ”

        Going back to the seventies and eighties, lesbians and gays campaigned for equal civil rights not because this ‘”tested” better on the public’ (whatever that is supposed to mean), but *because we did not have them*. To speak of what it was like in Britain, since that is what I know about from personal experience: simply being known to be homosexual was enough to get one sacked, with no prospect of claiming unfair dismissal. Lesbians who were mothers were at risk of losing custody of their children on divorce. Sex between men was only partly decriminalised, and the police routinely engaged in entrapment. And so on and so forth.

        On suicide: a study conducted in London in the early eighties found that about a third of gay teenagers had attempted suicide. This was highlighted by LGB activists, not because it ‘”tested” well’ but because it was shocking and sobering and cried out for action.

        I could say more, a lot more, but I hope I have made my point.

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      • Artemisia, I apparently didn’t write clearly enough. I don’t want to take up too much space here, so I’m trying to be brief and not fill in many details, since this is somewhat relevant to this blog on transgendering kids.

        Having been out now since 1982, I am aware of the history of the LGBT,and know that it is an organized movement, not an organization. The “LGBT” was first announced as a new coalition movement at SF Pride in 1986, to get lesbian and bi women to, as we were told by the rally speakers that day, “set aside our (feminist) differences with gay men, temporarily” to help gays to fight AIDS, AFTER which we were told they’d help us with our feminist political concerns. (Which too many lesbians fell for/were guilt-tripped into, which I’ll have to describe elsewhere. The “differences” we were told to “set aside” were our lesbian-feminist objections to gay’s sexism in ostensibly “lesbian and gay” organizations (where lesbians were at that time mostly expected to make coffee, not policy.) And our lesbian-feminist objections to the politics of assimilation into patriarchal institutions, which is what the larger, gay (male) dominated groups generally advocated for, and the LGBT still does. Given that gays are not oppressed as men, but oppressed as homosexual, most gay-dominated groups weren’t interested in dismantling patriarchy and it’s institutions, as lesbian feminists were; gay groups generally just wanted to dismantle the *homophobic* aspects of patriarchal institutions. So they advocated a politics of assimilation: trying to get acceptance within patriarchal institutions, instead of dismantling or fundamentally transforming them, as lesbian feminists advocated. For example, gays wanted acceptance into (corporate) business, the military, marriage law, etc, whereas lesbian feminists had up until the formation of the LGBT movement and it’s repression/co-optation of lesbian feminism, had advocated more for dismantling patriarchy, and evacuating from the corporate world, promoted anti-militarism through peace encampments, etc, and advocated rejecting motherhood and marriage (as the institution of female slavery for most of it’s history), except for child custody. Gays generally advocated a “born this way” “orientation” theory (a civil rights approach) whereas lesbian feminists had often advocated lesbianism as a feminist choice, a “preference,”in the 1970s and early 80s, until this was virtually silenced by the LGBT.

        I recently read that LGBT groups had done market testing to find that the public was more accepting of the “born this way” narrative than the idea of homosexuality as a personal or political preference, and thus the public was found to be more willing to grant “civil rights” based on the notion of “we can’t help it that we’re this way.” If you go back and read my post carefully, what I wrote was that trans have picked up on the “born this way” and “pointless and dangerous conversion therapy” and other strategies and rhetoric used effectively by the LGBT and groups like Act Up, even though homosexuality and “Gender dysphoria”/transgender are very different situations, which radfems have detailed elsewhere online so I won’t repeat here.

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      • The “LGBT” was first announced as a new coalition movement at SF Pride in 1986, to get lesbian and bi women to, as we were told by the rally speakers that day, “set aside our (feminist) differences with gay men, temporarily” to help gays to fight AIDS, AFTER which we were told they’d help us with our feminist political concerns.

        Historical inaccuracies press my buttons. For very sound reasons, I believe. No doubt you are right that an important meeting was held at SF Pride in 1986. I question that an “LGBT” coalition was announced; an “LGB” coalition sounds quite likely. I do not know of any evidence that the acronym “LGBT” was in use in either the US or the UK during the eighties, or indeed much before the mid-nineties; and believe me, I have done some research on this. If you can point me to sources that show otherwise, I should be interested to see them. This matter is important because of the way the transgenderists and their supporters are rewriting the whole history of the lesbian and gay communities and the political organisations and movements that developed within and from them. They are doing this for political reasons and it is essential that we keep the record straight.

        I myself am not a “lesbian-feminist”: I have always been consistent in rejecting that label, since it does not match my politics. I am a feminist lesbian. Strict lesbian-separatism strikes me, and always has, as a dead-end political philosophy. Furthermore, I do not buy the “lesbianism as a feminist choice” dogma. Simply, I don’t believe in it. And politically it cuts two ways: if you argue that “any woman can be a lesbian” then you can equally well argue that “any woman can be heterosexual”.

        I am interested that you say that the “born this way” line was market-tested; I did not know that. I have never liked it; for one thing, it throws bisexual people under the bus. You will note that I did not defend it in my comment.

        I agree with you that the transactivists have appropriated phrases and concepts like “conversion therapy” and “born this way” from the lesbian and gay rights movement. This is blatantly obvious and I have not disputed it.

        As for the decline of separatist lesbian-feminism in the course of the eighties: as I observed it, separatism was mostly theory; it was very limited when it came to praxis. “Women’s space” was a fine place to spend an evening, or a weekend, or a short holiday. An all-woman demo forged a great sense of solidarity and even celebration. But sooner or later we all went back to our real lives and our real-life problems: the risk of losing one’s job; losing custody of one’s children; being barred from access to one’s partner if she had an accident and was taken to hospital (because, of course, one was ‘not a relation’). I cannot speak to the American experience. In the UK, all of this has changed, because the organised LGB movement eventually, after years of work, brought us greater public acceptance and important legal rights.

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  11. So … this transkid lives in Malta? Figures.
    Malta apparently it is the only EU country where abortion is not even legal if a woman’s life is in danger. Very conservative, Catholic, etc.
    I am surprised that they apparently tolerate homosexuality, but am not surprised that there’s transing of children going on.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Essentially, trans kids put on blockers will never sexually mature. Cross sex hormones will not sexually mature their genitalia – a child has no inkling of what that means, nor should they. But it is not as simple as taking away something they never knew in the first place. It is their capacity to reproduce and enjoy sexual pleasure the way their bodies were intended to that is taken away. How can a child consent to that? I don’t believe it is surgery that sexually matures genitalia, but hormones of their natal sex. Would trans adults turned out by this system know what they are missing?

    Liked by 3 people

  13. One thing I think would be interesting and illuminating would be to explore the role that MONEY plays in the whole transmania avalanche. Follow the cash. And everyones desire to have their 15 minutes of fame. But I have my suspicions that the patriarchal institutions’ (medical, media, government, education…) reluctance to explore beliefs other than the trans narrative’s insane, unscientific, patriarchal, destructive double speak, has as much to do with who is funding them, giving them money, then anything else. And of course, the trans train wreck is right now Selling. Big bucks are being made in books, tv shows, print and online media. Money money money. Capitalism. What is it’s role in pushing the trans agenda???? And of course the children are it’s innocent victims.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. “… I know people treat people like me not very nice, and that needs to stop. People need to understand what hurts trans children and what situations they might have gone through. I think kids like me need books like mine to show them they are not alone, and society doesn’t have to win…”

    I don’t believe an 8 year-old could have written this.

    Liked by 5 people

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