Two years ago, I sat bewildered as my husband—sports watcher, gun owner, burger griller—defended his fervent belief that women’s sports should exclude biological men against my most rabid feminist friend, who replied with some variation of transwomen are women over and over. My friend took my confused silence for a betrayal of what she believed were our shared feminist values—but so did my husband. “I’m more of a feminist than you are,” he remarked to me before bed that evening, not without some smugness.
I had to wonder: was he right?
Until that night, I had done what was required of me as a good feminist. I volunteered for the National Organization for Women. I condemned Donald Trump’s lewdness. I read The Feminine Mystique. Yet the debate I witnessed that evening between Normal American Man and Prototypical Lib-Feminist sparked some serious and critical self-reflection. I did the work, as a progressive would say, and it catapulted me towards the conclusion I tried to deny but no longer can: liberal feminism is a Trojan horse for misogyny.
Feminism is in this pathetic state because it became a proxy for liberal politics rather than a movement for women’s rights. At its inception, feminism used politics as a tool for change; now, politics uses feminism as a tool for power.
Even as a teenage immigrant fresh off the plane from my liberal European motherland, it puzzled me that American feminists defined the sum total of the issues facing women as access to abortion and a pay gap based on shaky data. But two-and-a-half decades later, American feminism has moved beyond merely missing the point to actively harming women. The ways in which it does this are too numerous to contain in a single article but the most egregious is feminism’s recent embrace of gender identity ideology. This is because embracing that also requires embracing misogyny, sexism, and the victimization of women, no matter how many times the lib-feminists insist transwomen are women.
Gender Identity Requires Gender Stereotyping
In the prehistoric 1990s, my parents taught me that there was no wrong way to be a girl. Today, if a girl dislikes the color pink and prefers trucks to dolls, she’s told that womanhood is not for her but that we can fix wrong girls at the gender clinic. In just three decades, the vision of womanhood in which girls can be anything has been replaced by a medical protocol to fix girls who are not girly enough. We block their puberty with cancer drugs, flood them with testosterone, and give them hysterectomies and double mastectomies. We give them Frankenstein surgeries in which we slice the skin off their forearms to create an appendage intended to resemble a penis. Then, presumably, these girls are finally acceptable to liberal feminists: when they’re men.
Gender Identity Ignores Consent
As the Twitter feminists would have it, consent must be enthusiastically provided and renewed at every stage of a sexual encounter, yet female inmates cannot object to being locked into cells with convicted rapists. In other words, feminism now defines consent in a way that allows its adherents in state legislatures to negotiate away the boundaries of women they’ve never even met.
The doctrine also teaches teenagers that saying no to sex based on someone’s genitalia is “transphobic,” so girls are no longer allowed to say no to sex for any reason they please, or no reason at all. Gone are the days of that old-fashioned no means no tripe.
Sexual and personal boundaries are up for shaming and questioning, and a woman’s “no” is not the end of the discussion but the beginning of an appeals process adjudicated by men. Male judges, male politicians, even the pope himself, all receive appeals from men who cannot hear the word no. When liberal feminists post Smash the patriarchy! on Twitter, terms and conditions apply.
Gender Identity Centers the Feelings of Men Über Alles
More and more western countries allow so-called “self-ID,” which permits any man to access women’s spaces based only upon his claim that he “feels” female. This poses obvious risks to the safety of women but according to American liberal feminists, denying men access to women invalidates the men’s feelings, which is apparently the one cardinal sin a feminist must never commit.
The pro-gender ladies dismiss examples of predators abusing self-identify as anomalies, but that raises a question: how many rapes are acceptable to liberal feminists? Asking for a friend, one of those old-fashioned losers who thinks one is too many. Of course, if validation of transwomen’s feelings is paramount, then the number of physically victimized women is endless. We wouldn’t want to hurt men’s feelings by saying no, after all; nice girls don’t do that.
Gender Identity Takes Away Women’s Opportunities for Advancement
In Virginia, a woman was stripped of her powerlifting title when post-competition drug testing caught the fact that she was in fact a he. In women’s track cycling, a man won the gold at the 2018 Masters Track Cycling World Championships. In Connecticut, two male sprinters compete on the girls’ high school track team, resulting in girls missing out on all but one state championship from 2017 to 2019. At the Tokyo Olympics, a 43-year-old weightlifter who lived as a man for 35 years and never lifted weights during that time will compete against women. (He’s suddenly really good, you see.) And who could forget the biologically male MMA fighter who fractured the skull of a female opponent and was named “bravest athlete in history”? (Several NFL players would like to speak to a manager.)
The examples are endless now, but liberal feminists happily ignore them. Perhaps this is their stealthy way of finally fixing that pay gap they’re always blabbering about: just allow men to become us.
Who benefits here? Men, of course. It is men who benefit from modern feminism’s embrace of gender identity—but a certain kind of man. “Not all men” is a phrase liberal feminists scoff at in the context of sexual violence against women, but it works well here.
Not all men want to badger their way into women’s dressing rooms and reduce women to spectators at our own sports. Not all men want to perform a hypersexualized caricature of “woman” or refer to us by degrading terms like “frontholes,” “cervix owners,” or “birthing persons,” a new vocabulary invented by people who think pronouns are violence but erasing women from the dictionary is progress.
I hope that we have not managed to #killallmen, as the so-called feminists screech on Twitter, because we desperately need the real ones to stand up for us now. Women welcomed this Trojan horse with open arms and now the enemy is streaming out while we’re asleep. And make no mistake: this enemy will not stop until women are erased from all meaningful participation in public life. Why liberal feminism is doing this should confound us all—but it is an irrelevant question for now, when our priority should be to wake up, first and foremost.
We need men to fight with us against the gender jihadists. The good news is that the average man recognizes gender identity disguised as feminism for the misogyny it is. For over a decade, I got nowhere blabbing about women’s rights at my house. Yet now, in the upside-down world of 2021, my husband is suddenly a feminist for the same reason that Tucker Carlson is: they acknowledge that womanhood is real, and they’re man enough to say it.