The moral aporias of contemporary progressive politics are becoming more obvious on a regular basis. This week, the U.K.’s Attitude magazine named transgender TikToker Dylan Mulvaney its “Woman of the Year” and featured him on its cover. As is increasingly the case with such awards, the choice of the recipient has little to do with merit or service to the wider community and everything to do with “sticking it to the Man.” Or, in this case, sticking it to the Woman. The award and the cover speak eloquently about the ideology of transgenderism. To give it to a man is to erase real women everywhere, to deny any significance to their bodies or distinctive bodily experiences, and also to deny the historical struggle of women for basic social recognition.
Of course, a radical feminism predicated on overcoming the physiological differences between men and women was always going to focus on reproduction, the most stubborn of the differences. And once society comes to see reproduction as a bug and not a feature of womanhood, the possibility of offering a stable answer to the question “What is a woman?” starts to disappear in a fog of culturally subjective behaviors. And so now radical feminism has found itself in a dilemma of its own making: downgrade reproduction to liberate women and you end up erasing women altogether. Or at least you end up allowing men to usurp your history and, as you complain men always do, use their privileged position to maintain their power.
Yet the patronizing and destructive nature of transgender ideology with regard to women does not end with their erasure. The Attitude magazine cover is fascinating. Mulvaney’s look is an off-the-shoulder number, and the styling is reminiscent of the Vanity Fair cover that displayed the transformation of Bruce Jenner into Caitlyn, airbrushed and scantily clad, looking seductively into the camera. Both images perpetuate a male stereotype of what a woman should be.
Carl Trueman | “Dylan Mulvaney And The Real Clash Of Civilizations” | October 19th, 2023
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