Kathleen Stock: 5 tips to keep transactivist troublemakers quiet

The lecturer forced to resign for saying that biological sex exists explains how to deal with harassing transactivism: just like a mother dealing with a wayward child or rebellious teenager. An ironic guide to saving your life
Please be aware that the translation of contents, although automatic, has a cost to Feminist Post but is provided to you without any charge. Please consider making a contribution via the "Support us" page if you intend to use our translation service intensively.
The contents of this site are translated using automatic translation systems without the intervention of professional translators.
Translations are provided for the sole purpose of facilitating reading by international visitors.
Share this article

Philosopher Kathleen Stock became known outside academic circles after being forced by threats and defamation by transactivists to resign from her professorship at the University of Sussex for expressing critical views on gender identity (see here).

While similar cases happen all over the world, including Italy and Europe (see here e here), in Anglo-Saxon countries the teachers organise themselves to fight against the censorship of gender critical feminism.

In the article we present Kathleen Stock uses one of the most powerful weapons against all authoritarianism: irony.

From her experience Kathleen Stock draws 5 tips on how to talk to 'troublemaker transactivists' we might find in our path. In a nutshell: like a mother struggling with a tantruming child or a rebellious teenager.


It will not have escaped the notice of those who carefully observe that something about modern transactivism seems to make certain adults, in other respects functional according to Gillick* expertise, tend to have childish behaviour. From recent intervention of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to clarify the legality of single-sex spaces under theEquality Act, until the government's announcement not to criminalise what is tendentiously called 'conversion therapy' for people with 'discordant' gender identities, it seems that Every time an obstacle is placed in the path of transactivists, general despair breaks out, with dramatic statements and breath held until nausea.

Given the extreme nature of activists' ambitions - essentially, refounding the English language so that no one can refer specifically to males and females in any context any more - one might assume that they would be a little more prepared for a possible tough challenge. But not so - each new challenge is perceived as an incomprehensible and devastating attack which, inevitably, causes a lot of melodrama.

What generates such infantile regression in the followers of the new 'gender religion'? In part, the answer seems to have to do with the example given by Stonewall. For years, the association has acted like a frenzied primary school teacher who suddenly becomes a scoundrel, inciting all kinds of misbehaviour in those within his sphere of influence. Through the use of an elaborate 'gratification' graphic - otherwise known as UK Workplace Equality Index - sowed a fgeneral misunderstanding within hundreds of institutions on the actual state of equality law. It scared people with gruesome stories of murders, suicide threats and hate crimes such as the "misgendering" (using pronouns of a gender other than 'preferred', Ed). No wonder the more susceptible are getting so worried.

The latest example of Stonewall's moral leadership was a couple of weeks ago, when it was revealed that the organisation's abstention from the LGBT rights conference Safe To Be Meplanned by the government, will cost taxpayers at least £650,000, and probably more. Having previously been paid to co-organise the conference, the declaration of withdrawal of Stonewall was peppered with the usual propaganda: broken hearts over the government's U-turn on conversion therapy, shattered trust, and so on. One would think that the government has just announced compulsory heterosexuality for all, and not simply a pause in legislation that threatens to criminalise talking therapies for people questioning their gender, including homosexual teenagers who risk embarking on a medicalised path they might later regret.

Many of those fighting the Stonewall agenda are mothers - or as the maternity hospital where I gave birth twice would say, 'pregnant people'. As many mothers know, it is important to have some strategy ready when things get tough. So - with solidarity for beleaguered adults everywhere who are dealing with the transactivist drama in their organisations, homes and groups of friends - here is five rules in supernanny style, from me.

1 - ENCOURAGE THEM TO USE THEIR OWN WORDS

As with children, in transactivism there is a lot of shouting and cackling and strutting, but not much thinking. The next time a transactivist intones a mantra or slogan approved by Stonewall, Kindly encourage him to use his words and explain what he says. For instance, you might ask: if every male who feels like a woman is a trans woman, and trans women are women, what then is a woman? Don't be put off by furious complaints that you would be bigots for asking such a question - this is just a diversion not to answer you.

Similarly, one could ask them: whether, as Stonewall tells us, "to be 'non-binary' is to exist outside the boundaries and expectations of society", what does this mean for the countless gay people who have spent their lives facing discrimination and sometimes violence because they do not correspond to heterosexual norms? How does having a particular haircut compare to this?

Or if, as the new Stonewall campaign in favour of 'asexuals', a 'grey-sexual' is someone who "may experience sexual attraction very rarely or only in specific circumstances", while "'demisexual' people only experience sexual attraction after developing a strong emotional bond with someone", then in effect, most of us are not 'grey-sexual' or 'demisexual'? And more precisely, why all this involves a lavishly paid political campaign by taxpayers?

2 - PRAISE THE GOOD

When educating offspring, it is important to positively reinforcing correct behaviour. This can be an effective strategy, in general, for people of difficult character. Transactivists often claim that they want to break down retrograde stereotypes of how males and females should behave and appear. If this is the case, tell them that this is a really great thing! Praise them highly for this - although you might also ask them how they plan to break down stereotypes, as they seem to believe that playing with dolls and wearing female clothes can turn a male child into a female.

3 - SETTING LIMITS

This seems to be particularly difficult for transactivists to accept, since they tend to think that all those who set limits or stakes are fascists. Start by casually saying things like 'apples cannot be oranges' and 'tables cannot be chairs'. (In case they get angry and start calling you 'fruit police' or 'furniture police', ignore them and proceed calmly.) Finally, work your way up to talking about males and females in non-human species on earth: 'deer are not hinds', 'bulls are not heifers', and so on.

Once this information is well tolerated, gently introduce the idea that humans are also a sexually dimorphic species; and that, as with other species, we need mutually exclusive names for the two human sexes in order to be able to speak clearly about them. And after this radical idea has taken root, perhaps you could start talking about other kinds of limits and stakes as well.

For example, one could talk about the physical boundaries of women's changing rooms and dormitoriesand what these boundaries should actually do to protect their occupants from male predation. Or one could talk about the personal boundaries of women who say they do not want men in the public spaces where they undress. At all times during this process, use examples. A firm and consistent 'no' could be useful.

4 - IGNORE DERAILMENT ATTEMPTS

Children like to copy what you just said and repeat it back to you ("no, YOU are!"). Sometimes they do it just to annoy you. Other times, it is because they want to argue an argument but don't know how, so they parrot a version of what you just said in the hope that it will work. Similarly, some transactivists like to take the themes launched by gender-critical feminists (gender critical) and relaunch them, only slightly changed.

For example, feminists gender critical often express concerns about the lack of protection in self-identification (Self-ID) policies, and the negative effects of such policies on female survivors of male sexual violence. Not to be outdone, last week my former colleague and fervent transactivist professor Alison Phipps wrote on TwitterWhen I go to a public toilet I am incredibly vigilant - I scan every woman I meet and ask myself if she is a 'gender-critical feminist'. Their obsession with what's in everyone's trousers is frightening and as a woman cis e survivor, it makes me feel very insecure'. Now, either this shows a level of paranoia on par with Q-Anon's concerns about 'reptilians' in the White House, or is it a not subtle attempt to provoke feminists gender critical.

Or take University of Berkeley 'professor' Grace Lavery, currently in the UK promoting on Woman's Hour a new book about his penis, and on which he gave at University College London a conference entitled "The critical gender movement is the greatest threat to academic freedom in the last generation". I was told that in the speech, my name came up - you know, that former professor who was harassed for saying that biological sex matters - as someone who is supposedly personally responsible for the recent serious losses of freedom of thought in the academies.

As with the more childish version, the nonsensical reversals ('no YOU are') such as those of Phipps and Lavery risk dragging you into unnecessary back-and-forth, which presumably, is their real intention. Try not to get involved. Do what mothers have been doing since time immemorial and pour yourself a nice gin. Take a sip and read this piece wonderfully warm, insightful and witty English scholars Christopher Castile and Christopher Reed, written in response to Grace Lavery's attempt - you know, that 'professor' who is very keen on protecting academic freedom - to delete them in 2018 for allegedly allowing 'transphobic fascism' in their writings. (Their alleged crime, according to Lavery, was to defend the use in some cases of birth names and real sex pronouns. And the attempted deletion was eventually successful.

In particular, as you read Castile and Reed's piece, dwell on these premonitory words: "What we too often face in university academies today is something that looks less and less like activism or erudition and much more like a acting-out adolescent. Now that scientists have decided that adolescence - a newly invented identity closely associated with advanced capitalism - persists into the third decade of human life, perhaps we should not be surprised to see behaviours associated with adolescents proliferating, being tolerated and sometimes even encouraged within educational institutions. To be specific, adolescent' is defined as the furious response to the discovery that others do not perceive you exactly as you would like to imagine yourself to be'.

5 - GET THEM OUT IN THE OPEN AIR

This last rule is quite simple. Get your transactivist troublemaker away from the screen or phone and into the fresh air. Inhibit the flow of crazy statements coming into innocent minds from LGBT organisations and blue-checked accounts on Twitter. Encourage them instead to run around, take off their shoes, splash around, get muddy and sweaty, and generally reconnect with their physical body and the natural world.

And if there is a member of the opposite sex, why not encourage them to arm wrestle or have a throwing contest? Both might learn something interesting. Perhaps this teaching could also fuel subsequent conversations about the presence of 'trans women' (biologically men) in women's sport.

* La Gillick competence is a term used in English medical law to decide whether a child under 16 is capable of consenting to his or her own medical treatment, without the need for parental permission or knowledge.

Translation by Angela Tacchini

Original article here


Much of the news published by Feminist Post you will not read elsewhere. That is why it is important to support us, even with a small contribution: Feminist Post is produced solely by the voluntary work of many people and has no funding.
If you think our work can be useful for your life, we will be grateful for even the smallest contribution.

You can give us your contribution by clicking here: Patreon - Feminist Post
   - or -
You can send to: ASSOCIAZIONE CULTURALE BLU BRAMANTE
Obligatory reason: FEMINIST POST
IBAN: IT80C0200812914000104838541
You might also be interested in
3 December 2022
UK: Sirens no longer wallow
Under investigation is Mermaids, a British 'charity' that deals with the transition of minors, in order to ascertain the criteria of its activity that according to detractors encourages girls and boys on the road to 'free gender identity'. Meanwhile, President Susie Green has abruptly resigned and many organisations and government bodies, starting with the Department of Education, have stopped working with the charity and suspended public funding.
A few weeks ago Susie Green, leader of Mermaids, a British 'charity' that deals with children's transition, suddenly resigned from her post without giving any explanation. It is a sign that something is not working among the Mermaids. Mermaids was founded in 1995 and composed exclusively of volunteers until 2016, when Green became president. It is based in Leeds, with an office in London, and has 44 staff members and 110 volunteers. The government's Charity Commission has initiated [...]
Read now
21 November 2022
Prostitution 'clients' know full well that they are committing violence
Research on sex buyers shows that men are fully aware that prostitution is violence, that criminal organisations keep women in fear and that there is no 'regulation' that holds. But they only stop if they risk a criminal conviction, as is the case in Sweden, Norway, Canada, France, Ireland, Israel and other countries that have introduced the abolitionist model. Otherwise, they continue to consider date rape as their right
by Julie Bindel Germany is known as the brothel of Europe. It is a hard-won title. With more than 3,000 brothels across the country, and 500 in Berlin alone, its sex trade is worth more than £11 billion a year. Prostitution, in all its forms, has been legal in Germany since the end of World War II. Recently, however, attitudes are changing. People and politicians are asking the government to take notice of the so-called 'pimp state' and [...]
Read now
11 November 2022
Iranian Beauty
In Iran, female beauty becomes the lever of a real revolution: nothing like the mortification-commodification of bodies that is propagated as freedom in the West. The struggle to be able to be a woman reveals the'hypocrisy of the queer
It is now almost two months since the Iranian girls' revolt against the veil began, an irrepressible wave that every day produces new images, new content, a breath of fresh air compared to certain narratives about women in the Islamic world, but also a mirror that reveals how much of an artefact there is behind so many politically correct watchwords of intersectional feminism or transfeminism. First, the veil is not a free choice, nor is that feminist empowerment about which we have been bombarded by [...]
Read now
27 October 2022
England: new guidelines for 'trans' minors
While Spain is about to approve the horrifying Ley Trans, which allows the transition of girls from the age of 12 even if their parents oppose it, the English health service closes once and for all with the so-called pharmacological 'affirmative approach' (puberty blockers) practised for years and points to psychological treatment as the priority route. And in Italy? For the Italian Society of Paediatrics, these drugs do not cause any problems and their effects are completely 'reversible', a fact denied by several studies
The English health service (NHS) has published a new draft of guidelines for the treatment of children with gender dysphoria (full text here), pending the results of the Cass Review, an independent enquiry commissioned by the British health minister and led by paediatrician Hilary Cass (see here), which will lead to a complete restructuring of services dedicated to gender non-conforming children. After the closure of the Tavistock clinic -which we told you about here-, NHS puts a definitive end to the so-called [...]
Read now
6 October 2022
'Destroy women's rights': JK Rowling against the Scottish premier and her trans law
As in Spain, feminism in Scotland fights against a law wanted by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon introducing gender self-determination without any medical diagnosis and lowering the age for access to 16. And this time too, the Harry Potter author stands by women, girls and children
JK Rowling takes a photo of herself wearing a t-shirt that reads 'Nicola Sturgeon, destroyer of women's rights' to support women protesting in front of the Scottish Parliament against the controversial gender recognition reform bill wanted by Scotland's First Minister. Activists from For Women Scotland gathered in front of the Scottish Parliament this morning for a demonstration against the bill promoted by Sturgeon, which would make gender self-determination easier - we have [...]
Read now
5 October 2022
The Iranians are fighting for us too
Women in Iran are oppressed, violated and killed precisely because of their bodies as women. And their revolt could free everyone and everyone. Is'the woke West of'gender identity and 'freedom of the veil' ready to understand and support this revolution that blows for us too? Woman, life, freedom
In the uncertain and ever-changing geopolitical order of our time, in the midst of a global political agenda that from right to left forgets women, betraying, albeit in different ways, female exclusivity and the richness of sexual difference, the struggle of Iranian women has something epic, something moving. The killing of Mahsa Amini shows how the issue of the 'veil as freedom' is the quintessence of intellectual dishonesty, of logical fallacy, of an age-old lie. To 22-year-old Mahsa, the desire to 'feel the [...]
Read now
1 2 3 ... 40