Monday, May 23, 2016

Gender and Tolerance

Transgenders on the Victim Bandwagon

The latest entry in the left’s ever expanding list of groups who need to be petted, pandered to and catered to is transgender people.

Transgender speakers are hot on the college lecture circuit, and the latest “inclusion” fad on college campuses is “gender neutral” bathrooms and dorms.

And worse, the Obama Justice Department is trying to force the transgender agenda on the entire nation’s schools.

With transgender people (and with gays and every other politically correct victim group) the left uses the word “tolerance.” If you oppose their agenda, it’s only because you are “intolerant” or a “bigot” and even a “homophobe.”

Tolerance ought to be a two way street. But today’s Social Justice Warriors see no need for tolerance toward people who disagree with them.

Let’s take Bruce Jenner, for example. He has decided he’s a woman. He’s had some plastic surgery so that his features are a bit more feminine. And he wears dresses. Tolerance says he had a right to do all of that.

But tolerance says that I have a right to view him as a male transvestite, who is a bit odd. Anybody who says I have no right to think that is intolerant of me. Jenner has a right to his opinion as to his gender, I have an equal right to my opinion about his gender. Equal tolerance.

Social Justice Warriors: Equal Tolerance?

Of course, a Social Justice Warrior might insist that he has a right to view me as a bad person because I think that. He does indeed, but if he tries to bully me by calling me a “bigot” or “intolerant” he is no better than I would be if I bullied a gay person by calling him a “pervert” or “degenerate.”

Further, if the Social Justice Warrior has a right to view me as a bad person because of my opinions, I have an equal right to judge the opinions and the actions of others. I have a right to decide that (for example) homosexual acts are sinful, or that guys wearing a dress are weird.

But of course, Social Justice Warriors deride “judgmental” attitudes on the part of people with whom they disagree, while being rigidly judgmental toward those same people. They seem to think they have a monopoly on passing moral judgment.

Things get worse when people try to impose their ideas about sex and gender on others. Does “tolerance” mean that a person who looks like a man gets to use the ladies room? What about tolerance of women who would feel that to be a huge imposition on their sense of privacy? Why does the person who looks like a man want to use the ladies room? Probably because he wants affirmation of his gender identity.

Demanding Affirmation

But demanding that others affirm one’s idea that one is really a woman (while one looks like a man and was born a male) is a demand one has no right to make. You have a right to think you are “really” a woman. I have a right to think you are really a man, and so do the women who feel violated if you are in their restroom.

And it’s even worse if in public schools a kid with a penis is allowed to run naked in the girl’s locker room, as the Obama Administration has demanded.

Which shows how using government to force your notions of sex and gender on others is downright toxic.

Private Sector over Governmental Fiat

Left to the private sector, things are likely to work out in a messier, but ultimately more satisfactory way. Big box store Target can declare its restrooms gender neutral if it wants. People who are uncomfortable with that are free to shop elsewhere. That’s tolerance.

While nobody should be forced to accommodate the desires of transgender people, some firms may choose to, just as some restaurants might choose to accommodate vegans. But the accommodations are likely to be more moderate than Target’s. Having single use bathrooms (one user at a time) is not outrageous, since people are used to that after decades of air travel. Likewise, no transgender person should mind using the “family” restrooms, since those are inherently gender neutral (intended for a dad and small daughter, or mother and young son, for example). And expensive reconfigurations of facilities are unlikely, just as vegan restaurants are uncommon.

Gay Lobby and Hypocrisy of “Tolerance”

Issues of tolerance and intolerance have been even worse where homosexuality is concerned. Government has punished Christian bakers who did not want to bake a cake for gay wedding and photographers who did not want to photograph a gay wedding. Christian student groups have been told they may not insist that their officers adhere to Christian standards of sexual behavior. The gay lobby has been willing to use government to impose their notions of what is moral on people who disagree.

On the average college campus, saying something negative about homosexuality invites a lecture from your dorm resident assistant, or being bullied by the Bias Incident Response Team.

If the Westboro Baptist Church asked a gay baker to cater one of its events, nobody would think of trying to force him to do so. If the Muslim Student Association had an officer who started loudly insisting that Mohammad was a fraud and a child molester, the Social Justice Warriors would be happy to see that officer kicked out. But Muslims vote Democratic, and can be portrayed as a victim group.

Saying something unkind about Christians on a college campus would hardly raise an eyebrow.

Tolerance is only tolerance if it works both ways. Wanting tolerance for one’s own opinions and own favored groups is not tolerance. Every bigot wants that. The test is one’s willingness to tolerate people and opinions one dislikes. This is a test the left in America flunks badly.

[By John McAdams, Reprinted from The Madison Speakeasy, Volume 1, Number 2]

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Blogger Dad29 said...


Let's not all get onto the "tolerance" bandwagon here. Strictly speaking, one "tolerates" evil but one does not "tolerate" good.

Therefore, "tolerance" is utilized for practical reasons ranging from simple civility to the inability to defeat the evil (such as the US tolerating the USSR's mass-murders because declaring war on the USSR would create more problems than it would solve--or so we thought.)

Big difference. Tolerance is not a virtue; it is only a subset of the virtue of Prudence.

8:02 AM  
Blogger Kirby Olson said...

Camille Paglia sees the transgender phenomenon as a symptom of western collapse.

11:56 AM  
Blogger CS said...

I don't understand the problem about bathrooms. If dressed as a man, use the men's room, though if anatomically a woman, don't try using the urinal -- obviously. If dressed as a woman, use the women's room. Provided you commit no act of indecency, no one's gonna notice or care about your anatomical details or psychological peculiarities.

11:55 AM  
Blogger BuckeyeCat said...

Those pursuing what they perceive to be "social justice" have never provided me with coherent answer to a fairly straightforward line of questioning. Simply put: What is tolerance and what moral basis justified it as a good thing? What is homophobia, and what moral standard objectively and in equivalently condemns it? What specifically is xenophobia, and is it an objective evil wrong for everyone, everywhere at all times? If transphobia is wrong, what makes it wrong? Is there an objective basis from which the conclusion that transphobia is evil follows as a necessary conclusion? What is "offensive" speech or behavior? What ethically normative, nonarbitrary, objective standard defines and prohibits this (whatever it may be on any given day)? What does the nebulous term "inclusion" mean, and on what grounds is it a good thing. Ought Dr. McAdams be welcomed and included as advisor to Dr. Lovell? If exclusion is a bad thing, then why not include him in that capacity immediately? If "power inequity" or the hegenomy of the patriarchy is injust, on what basis is that claim made? "It's just wrong to have white males in power is not an answer. Namecalling, e. g. "sexist," is not an adult, mature answer. Shrill complaints about "logocentrism" are vacuous attempts to avoid engaging in grown up discussion. Next, if diversity is the panacea for all that ails the contemporary campus, why is diversity of ideas considered offensive (e. g., the Catholic moral teaching which opposed homosexual acts and marriage is a homophobic, not a "diverse" viewpoint). If the social justice preachers could spare a moment, I'd be grateful for any enlightenment they can provide. Why was Nietzsche wrong to ridicule "You preachers of equality," and to compare equity-ists as "tarantulas"? Thanks in advance for your well reasoned, irenic replies.

8:38 AM  

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