Rage identifies as passion

Hadley Freeman on the “passion” (actually the misogyny) of men like Lloyd Russell-Moyle:

It was inevitable the fantasies sold by gender activists would crash on the hard rocks of reality, and not just because of the endless internal contradictions (if gender is different from biological sex, and given that sport is segregated by sex, why are trans women now on women’s sports teams?). The movement is increasingly underpinned by a frothing misogyny that is becoming all too visible to even the most casual observers. Some insist it is impossible to engage rationally with this “debate” because, they say, “both sides are equally toxic”. Parliament last week gave the lie to that. When Rosie Duffield spoke on Tuesday, calmly — and rightly — saying that Scotland’s bill “clearly conflicts with the Equality Act and would have repercussions for women across the UK”, she was jeered by men in her own party, most obviously Ben Bradshaw and Lloyd Russell-Moyle. After the Conservative MP Miriam Cates spoke about the threats the bill poses to women’s “dignity and safety”, Russell-Moyle, pink with rage, called Cates’s speech “disgusting” and added, wagging his finger: “You should be ashamed!”

He shouted it, from a contorted rage-face, and his finger was stabbing the air rather than wagging. It was the full-on “I am this close to breaking your jaw” that far too many men allow themselves to use on women who dare to have their own views.

Yesterday Duffield wrote in The Times that Russell-Moyle then crossed over “to the Tory side of the chamber to sit on the side benches, very close to [Cates], staring as if to intimidate” the Conservative MP. He was so proud of his performance, he put a clip of it on his Twitter page, although he later issued a non-apology, saying he stood by his words but had “failed to control that passion”. Men — so emotional. Amirite, ladies?

Straight out of the bullies’ playbook. They’re not using their greater strength and bulk and vocal power to intimidate women, they’re passionate and concerned and exploding with solidarity.

Gender activism has become the permissible face of misogyny for a certain kind of allegedly progressive man. It gives him latitude to call women derogatory names and make spittle-flecked videos, insisting that anyone who has a problem with male-born people in women-only spaces is on the wrong side of history.

We’ve been watching this (and objecting to it and resisting it) for literally years, and it’s only getting worse.

Russell-Moyle has previously had to apologise to JK Rowling after accusing her of “using her own sexual assault as a justification for discriminating against a group of people who were not responsible for it”, ie trans women, ie male-born people. Perhaps he learnt something from that experience because he didn’t accuse Duffield — another victim of male violence — of exploiting her own lived experience. But it’s a shame he is so unwilling, or maybe just unable, to understand no matter how passionately he shouts at women, he cannot make them believe something as undefined as “gender” renders all differences between the two sexes — males are stronger, males are more violent — irrelevant.

His red-faced finger-stabbing shouting just underlines the fact that men are stronger and more violent and that’s why we refuse to agree that they are women if they say they are. Lloyd Russell-Moyle could wear a tutu and dance en pointe and we still wouldn’t believe he’s a woman.

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