In case any fellow liberal thinks I’ve gone off the reservation on this topic… I give you the words of none other than Amanda Marcotte, who has the most unblemished feminist and liberal street cred of any writer I can think of.
Marcotte is writing in response to Elinor Burkett. Burkett was going after trans-activists for, according to her, monopolizing feminism and women’s rights for themselves, and shrieking and shutting down any sort of debate or disagreement. In response, Marcotte accurately shunts off these disagreeable people as the “SJWs” that EVERYONE actually hates, left, right, and center: [boldings all mine]
Burkett tries to fluff up her claim that trans women are a dire threat by pointing to a couple of cases where lefty academics, trying to burnish their more-P.C.-than-thou credentials, attacked feminist activists online for perceived slights…
Burkett offers no evidence that a few nit-picky social media warriors are representative of trans women, much less that Caitlyn Jenner has anything at all to do with them.
I will grant that academic types who use all their intelligence and education to craft half-baked, jargon-y arguments meant more to score political points than to enlighten are aggravating.
The go-to argument for anti-feminist MRA trolls, or really conservatives in general, is to slander all progressives as being this sort of SJW scold that nobody likes. (Marcotte herself is on the receiving end of this sort of insult more than almost anyone else.) It is about as fair as using ISIS to slur all Muslims, or using McDonald’s to slur all hamburgers.
Sometimes I wonder how much healthier our society’s discourse would be if we automatically ignored anyone with an .edu email address. (I kid… kinda.)
But it’s true that we are as sick of these humorless hacks as anyone else. More so, in fact, since their Twitter and Tumblr tirades only serve to make the rest of us lefties look ridiculous.
As far as the larger argument about trans rights, I don’t have much to add to this great debate of the here and now other than to note how little time is spent talking about the rank profiteering off the backs of trans people by our medical community. Endocrinologists, psychiatrists and above all, plastic surgeons have turned this issue into a multi-billion-dollar for-profit commercial enterprise for themselves, often relying on cash payments as opposed to insurance. Because our health care system is in such dire need of extra cash these days, amirite?