As a buddy of mine noted when passing on this column, the chief crime committed by Rebecca Tuvel is reporting accurate production figures during a communist five year plan. She has revealed the absurdity of arguments in favor of transgenderism while trying to defend transracialism. For that sin, she must be re-educated or exiled.
Rebecca Tuvel is a philosophy professor at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN, and argued in a paper that because the left accepts transgenderism and believes certain things about identity and people’s ability to identify, they should therefore accept transracialism and accept people like Rachel Dolezal as black.
She happens to be right. Based on the left’s logic, its assumptions about self-identity, its assumptions about gender, its assumption about trans people, etc. the left should be willing to accept transracial people. The logic is consistent, but that consistency shows just how absurd and nonsensical the whole thing is.
That is why the left is out to destroy Rachel Tuvel’s career. There are demands that she be fired. The “feminist-philosophy” journal, Hypatia, in which she wrote her piece will not stand by her. Hypatia has apologized for the article.
Jesse Singal, in New York Magazine, writes
It’s important to understand exactly what’s going on here, and the extent to which the smoke:fire ratio is so bizarrely out of whack, so let’s go through those points one by one.
(1) Use of the term “transgenderism” is slightly tricky. Groups like GLAAD do caution against its use, but there’s literally no other single word in the English language that means the same thing, now that transexuality is widely viewed as outdated or offensive. The closest English has is the unwieldy “being transgender” suggested by GLAAD — it’s telling that the organization’s other alternate suggestions, the transgender community and the movement for transgender equality and acceptance, don’t even mean the same thing. Perhaps because of the lack of other options, there also isn’t unanimity on this front, even within the trans community — here’s Julia Serano, a leading trans advocate and writer, defending the term and arguing against the tendency in some activist communities to regularly “problematize” language and seek out new terms to describe important concepts.
The left is arguing over control of words and terms as it seeks to upend normal conventions. Gertrude Himmelfarb wrote, “What was once stigmatized as deviant behavior is now tolerated and even sanctioned; what was once regarded as abnormal has been normalized . . . . As deviancy is normalized, so what was once normal becomes deviant. The kind of family that has been regarded for centuries as natural and moral – the ‘bourgeois’ family as it is invidiously called – is now seen as pathological”
That is on display here as the left consumes itself for daring to apply its logic consistently.