Guest post: Instruments of social control

Originally a comment by Freemage on There are wheels that have been squeaking for a lot longer.

Religion is an instrument of societal control, but the New Atheist dream that a world without religion would immediately cast off the old chains has been largely and soundly debunked, primarily by the actions and rhetoric of the New Atheists, themselves. Undermining religious conservatives, in particular, does deal with one stumbling block, but it helps to remember there are progressive religionists, too (Quakers, for instance, tend to be a decade or two on the right side of historical changes), who can be counted upon as allies in fights against oppression, at least so long as their atheist counterparts don’t kick things off with, “You’re dumb. Help us.”

I do wonder how much of the extreme trans-woman rhetoric (and yes, it does seem to largely be confined to the transwoman side, with the standard caveats about humans being capable of anything accounting for the handful of transmen extremists) represents the larger body of transwomen, particularly among those who actually seek GRS. I’ve known a small number of transwomen over the years (possibly more, as the ones I KNOW were trans were the ones who transitioned after I’d met them, and I’ve seen enough of them post-transition to realize that I’m not particularly good at telling the difference on sight), and literally none of them have ever spouted off the sorts of nonsense and hateful rhetoric Ophelia regularly quotes here. Instead, they were generally inclined to keep to themselves and were way too busy navigating the assorted difficulties of life to deal with this sort of thing.

The bit that blows my mind is the extreme trans alliance with the ‘non-binary’ movement. The latter absolutely SHOULD be a feminist-adjacent cause, but got co-opted by the trans extremists somehow, even though they always seem to have opposing agendas, to my understanding. To feminist ideology, there’s little difference between ‘non-binary’ and ‘breathing’–a truly ‘binary man’ would be more like a Chuck Norris meme come to life; I’m not even sure I could imagine a genuinely ‘binary woman’, since the definition of femininity is almost always rigged to make sure that no human being could fit all the requirements (because that makes it easier to point out how any given woman is a ‘failure’ to meet the contradictory requirements). Sure, there’s a bit of special snowflake-ism to calling yourself non-binary, but that seems like it could be a window to getting the person to realize that this is the natural human condition, and that the gender roles they’re rejecting shouldn’t be forced on anyone.

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