• Agent Smith
    7.6k
    On a more serious note, if I feel like I'm a proboscis monkey (Rastapopoulos), does that mean I am a proboscis monkey? I am according to transgender logic.
  • I like sushi
    3.9k
    That is hardly equivalent. Humans can be male and female. Humans, as far as I know, have never been big-nosed monkeys.

    It is common enough for people to believe they look or sound a certain way when they do not. I have never heard of anyone insisting they were a monkey … because if they did their insistence would prove them wrong (monkeys do not argue).
  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    Obviously, the comparison between human beings and monkeys with that of masculinity vs femininity doesn't work completely because it is about a different species. However, there is the whole dimension of the human imagination. As a child, monkeys were my favourite animals. Also, apart from pretending to be famous rock stars, I used to pretend to be Galen from 'Planet of the Apes'. Of course, he was a 'talking ape' and was the one who was friends with humans rather than simply swinging through the trees.

    The point is it all comes down to the human imagination and fantasy. Young children engage in make believe and this is likely to be important in the formation of gender. Children are affected by television and media images in thinking of social roles and who they wish to become when they wish to grow up.

    In shamanic culture, there is a fantasised imagination of shapeshifting. This includes fantasised projection of becoming animals, along the line of dream imagination. I am not aware of shamans trying to live as animals but the shapeshifting does involve people experimenting with gender shifting in real life. Some gender experimentation, especially in the shamanic aspect of rock stars, such as David Bowie, may go back to the shamanic quest and it's mythology.
    .
  • I like sushi
    3.9k
    Nah! It is just a very crass generalisation that does nothing to progress any reasonable discussion … that was probably the point of Mr. Smith’s comment (that or plain stupidity/laziness).
  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    I am not wishing to go to far with the comparison about pretending to be monkeys and we will see if Agent Smith has any thoughts. However, I am serious in the idea of fantasy playing a significant role in the formation of identity, including gender identity. I find that more useful for thinking about gender dysphoria rather than those who simply dismiss such dysphoria as delusional.

    This applies to sexuality as well. Children grow up fantasising about romance. This involves fantasy lovers and the beginning of sexual orientation in its root form, although, of course, what happens in real life, especially from puberty onwards and encounters with people and relationships is involved in the actualisation of this potential.
  • introbert
    80
    In my opinion transgenderism falls under irony. It defies our objective understanding of the world, and is a phenomenon of indirect realism. That the world is how it appears is not the case for transgenderism. A man is actually a woman, vice versa. Although there might be an objective fact such as genes that underly transgenderism, it manifests subjectively that revolutionizes expectations regarding sex. To impose a completely objective understanding of sex and gender would be to establish expectations regarding a wide range of behaviors. To act with a subjective difference to objectivity that defies these expectations is ironic and manifests different ironic events: dramatic, as in when a person knows a person is transgendered when another doesn't; situational, as in when a dude looks like a lady; cosmic, as in when someone is born with all the biological features of a man or a woman, but they ironically become the opposite; Socratic, as is when someone who is not biologically a man dresses as a man, and proves to you that they are a man; etc...
  • I like sushi
    3.9k
    Most of the talk in this area is generally pointless because it is full of political nonsense.

    If someone clearly wishes to be treated as a man/boy/woman/girl then that is fine. I do not care about their ‘junk’ nor their sexual orientation.

    Exceptions: Sharing prisons with opposite sex and competing against the opposite sex in physically demanding sports.

    It really isn’t massively complicated it is just that some loud minority wishes to shout for or against some item the vast majority likely do not care about.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.5k
    For me, these issues have little interest beyond their implications for the law. Any qualms people may feel due to religious beliefs, or political or cultural beliefs for that matter, are of concern only if they cause harm, and I mean harm as something beyond hurt feelings. One should do what one can to avoid insulting or disparaging others--that should go without saying, but if it doesn't there are limits to what can be done about it. Something can be done, through the law, in cases of violence, repression or discrimination.
  • I like sushi
    3.9k
    In the broader sense of the OP there is interest for everyone in how roles in society have changed. A lot of this came more readily into focus in the west due to WW2 and women taking on the role of ‘men’ in the workplace. Further events and technologies have certainly shook up different societies to different degrees. There is also the historical narrative of Christianity surrounding the issue of sexual orientation and the ‘family unit’ (being a industrial idea) also playing a part.

    Did you know the term ‘gay’ comes from women who were prostitutes in the US? They were called ‘Gay Women’ … then when men got involved in the trade they were called ‘Gay Men’. I find things like that interesting :)
  • introbert
    80
    I have mixed feelings about it. Regarding the previous point I made, I think objective facts are good for science, but society should be governed by subjectivism. So, irony plays a role in diminishing objective controls over society. This is a serious topic and includes everything from extreme legal rationality when any object of the law is violated it demands zero tolerance to the stated topic of sexuality and gender. I am all for irony in challenging these expectations. Regarding prisons and sports, perhaps irony should implode aspects of these institutions as well.
  • Ciceronianus
    2.5k

    You're right, as I was taking too narrow a perspective. What I was thinking of was the debate whether the change of roles in society, as you describe it, is good or bad, "natural" or "unnatural." That doesn't interest me, at least. I think the likelihood is that humanity will change in many respects over time, given advances in technology and population, tribal gods, superstitions and cultural atavism notwithstanding. Assuming we don't manage to destroy ourselves or the planet, ways will have to be created to address those changes in an orderly and, one hopes, equitable fashion.
  • NOS4A2
    6.2k


    Those with gender dysphoria deserve as much respect and dignity as anyone else. My empathy ends the moment I am told to conform my language to another’s demands, that I must concede grammar and truth to people who are knowingly misidentifying themselves. So there is an ethical component to it as well.
  • Agent Smith
    7.6k
    Is gender identity confusion part of a much broader psychological phenomenon of identity "disorders"? People would call the men in white in coats immediately if I ever said I'm Joe Biden.

  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    You begin by speaking of respect for those with gender, but what you go on to say sounds like you think that by using chosen pronouns is collusion. Do you not see that it is about respecting choice? When people make choice of pronich ouns an issue it as like the gender dysphoric person is being regarded as delusional or psychotic. It seems bound up with materialistic fundamentalism.

    What is the danger or threat which accepting the psychological 'truth' of such individuals chosen journeys? Is it because it exposes the way in which everyone's gender and sexuality is based on culturally and intersubjective mythic fantasy? The body is the basis for gender and sexuality, but how this is played out in real life is based on what the postmodern writer, Judith Butler, spoke of as 'performance'.
  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    One interesting comparison is between gender identity disorder and body mysphorphic disorder. I have seen both in clinical practice. Body dysphmorphic disorder can involve fixation on specific body attributes and a sense of the body being 'ugly' or 'wrong' in some ways. Generally, body dysmorphic disorder seems more amenable to psychological therapies, such as CBT. However, most gender dysphoric people have been through psychological therapies. However, to try to 'correct' it, especially by treating it as delusional, simply doesn't work, just as conversion therapy for homosexuality doesn't help at all.

    Therapy may help is essential when it enables thinking about identity and choice. Yet, when it is used to oppose authenticity in sexuality and gender expression it may make matters worse.
  • Agent Smith
    7.6k


    Overheard a mother telling her son, "you can be whatever you want." The son, later, decided to become a woman! Can we really be whatever we want? I want to be ... a butterfly, but am I already one, just dreamin' I'm a man?
  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    Some may take the view that it is absurd to think about turning all possibilities into dreams. What may be important is how different are men and women in the first place? The physical differences are such that physical changes, while not always one hundred per cent as completely as desired, are able to make looking like the opposite sex possible. You might try to change yourself into a butterfly and even, with the best science, you may come up against impossible obstacles.
  • Agent Smith
    7.6k


    Are there any documented cases of a double negation (1st negation, gender switched from male/female to female/male, 2nd negation, back to male/female)?

    Have you heard of online scams where grown men pose as girls/women to bait other men? I have a feeling that the metaverse - choosing one's online persona includes a gender/sex option - is going to nudge people who are still unsure over the gender line. Fascinating!
  • NOS4A2
    6.2k


    The danger or threat is found wherever it becomes authoritarian, for instance the idea that one must, as a duty, dismiss his own grammar and furnish it with another’s. If it’s about choice, all parties involved ought to be able to use whatever pronouns they wish. Isn’t that so?

    Other than that I think the only concern for me is the normalizing of drastic and irreversible medical interventions in young people, such as using puberty blockers, which often amounts to chemical castration.

    At any rate, I do not see transgenderism as some threat to the concept of gender. Gender is largely incoherent, anyways, and can be dropped altogether.
  • Jack Cummins
    4.4k

    The issue of puberty blockers presents a big challenge to people seeking them and those caring for them. The issue has been given a lot of coverage in the English news by one individual, Kiera Bell. Kiera took puberty blockers and transitioned as a teenager, regretting it at age 21. She has now gone back to trying to live as female but has had treatment, including some surgery, some of which are irreversible. She maintains that she didn't have the capacity to consent due to adolescence being a time of emotional difficulty. She won her case in court. She says that she was not given enough psychological support when making decisions.

    The case above has had major repercussions for the thinking about puberty blockers and age of transition. However, some people are determined that they wish to have puberty blockers in particular because it enables a much smoother transition, as it pprevents the need to have treatment to reverse the effects of puberty.
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