Friday Ephemera
Friday Ephemera

Elsewhere (313)

Jonathan Kay on woke mysticism and the latest must-have identity niche:  

[O]ne of the main themes of the 32-page document is that the task of defining the Two-Spirit concept is (quite literally) beyond the powers of Western language and epistemology. And in any case, the category is almost completely open-ended: The act of proclaiming oneself Two-Spirited could be a statement about one’s gender, or sexual orientation, or both, or neither. Or 2S can be a statement about one’s politics, spirituality, or simply one’s desire to present as “anti-colonial.” […]

While the authors of the report were careful to source their work to Indigenous writers and interviewees, it’s interesting to note that all of the listed societal roles attributed to ancient Two-Spirited people align uncannily with the avant-garde outlook of a white 2022-era environmentalist who’s embraced intersectional conceptions of gender… We are told no fewer than nine times, for instance, that the authors are following an “anti-oppressive” approach. Colonialism is denounced more than a dozen times, including in its “heteronormative” (three times) variant.

Needless to say, the whole thing is a bit of a two-legged stool and, shall we say, not entirely consonant with anthropological evidence.

Libby Emmons on cheated female athletes and transgender overreach:

Judge Robert N. Chatigny demanded that the… attorneys who were representing the women refer to the two biological males as “transgender females,” stating that “referring to these ­individuals as ‘transgender ­females’ is consistent with science, common practice and perhaps human decency.” “If a judge dictates what words parties have to use,” attorneys said at the time, “it can bias the case. It is essential that every litigant be able to present their case to an impartial court in the way that they believe is the most accurate and true to the facts. We’ve explained in our brief how the judge’s order prevents us from doing that for our clients.”

It does sound awfully close to begging the question. But as noted before, if you mouth the first lie – that he is somehow she – then other lies and mental tangles will rapidly accumulate. Best, I think, not to give away the store in the first place.

Update, added via the comments:

Mick Hartley on pretensions, power games, and the cost of not pretending:

“I asked [teacher, Christie Hammer] how many sexes there were,” [student, Elizabeth] Leibiger said. “She said, ‘Two.’ I felt under personal attack.” Leibiger then gathered their things and walked out of class because they no longer felt respected.

Note the students’ use of the phrase “weren’t listened to,” despite them being listened to at length and being indulged to a preposterous degree. What they mean, it seems, is weren’t deferred to in our pretensions with sufficient speed and unanimity.

The tolerance of such dishonesty, and the willingness of supposedly grown adults to participate in it, and affirm it, while abasing themselves, is quite extraordinary. It seems to me a more frank and less dementing response to the students might be, “No, dears, you’re not ‘non-binary’ or some supposed third sex. You’re pretentious and neurotic, and your narcissistic psychodrama will not be indulged. Furthermore, your attempts to cow and coerce others – to bully them and have them reprimanded or fired – should make you feel deeply ashamed and an embarrassment to your parents. You pieces of moral garbage.”

Alas, there are few adults left in academia and so pretty much everyone pretends, or at least hides what they really think, and really know. Despite the cooing and rainbows, this is not a happy trajectory.

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