More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonconfor

Clippings from news sources involving fashion freedom and other gender equality issues.

Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Stu » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:55 pm

A number of people have suggested that gender is a social construct. In my view, that's partly true but not wholly true. Some aspects of masculinity and femininity are socially constructed, others are natural/innate and also there are gradations within these characteristics.

Start with the natural characteristics and these tendencies do align closely with biological sex and transcend cultural differences. Examples would include the effects which are linked to evolutionary forces and hormones. These would include such as male aggression, individualism, risk-taking and focusing on/more adept with the systematic. Conversely, females are more inclined to communication, colectivism, safety and focusing on/more adept with the systematic.

The characteristics which are purely social align only with biological sex to the extent that we arbitrarily assign them as such, and they are the product of cultural forces. There are, for example, no biological reasons why a woman shouldn't enjoy fly-fishing, and no reason a man shouldn't wear pink. Because these are cultural creations we are, in theory at least, at liberty to reject them, adopt new ones, or modify existing ones.

As I said, though, there are gradations. For example, a woman is far more likely to wear red lipstick and high heels, and these are certainly largely cultural, but they may also be the remnants of some primeval behaviours and instincts that associate red lips with female fertility, and the tottering on high-heels with frailty and thus sexual availability, so these are partially nartural and partially cultural. In addition to gradations, there are also exceptions. Just as men are on average taller than women, but there are some women who are taller than some men, so men have more naturally masuline characteristics on average, but there are some women who exhibit more of these than some men.

For the most part, I am not convinced by the notion of gender fluidity. Our gender, both natural and cultural, is mostly aligned to our biological sex, and those who deviate from this general rule are the exception. The notion that our gender can somehow change with our mood is also pushing credibility, but the most absurd claim of all is that biological sex is not a real thing. Anyone who believes biological sex is just a cultural phenomenonm, and there are such people, should work on a farm for a while and observe the animals. They'll soon realise that there are male and female cattle, sheep, goats and pigs and each animal knows perfectly well whether he's a guy or she's a gal.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Caultron » Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:31 pm

Stu wrote:...Anyone who believes biological sex is just a cultural phenomenonm, and there are such people, should work on a farm for a while and observe the animals. They'll soon realise that there are male and female cattle, sheep, goats and pigs and each animal knows perfectly well whether he's a guy or she's a gal.

I don't suppose there are any cross-dressing animals but...

List of animals displaying homosexual behavior: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_a ... l_behavior

Just sayin'...
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby skirtyscot » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:01 am

Well, when I saw how long this thread had become all of a sudden, I thought "flame war!" but evidently I was wrong. It's good to be part of a group where potentially contentious subjects can be discussed civilly, even where there are strongly contrasting views. The subject of gender does appear to be one where in most corners of the Internet, every interested forum has a fixed opinion, and dissenting voices get silenced. Even carefully worded questions from people who merely wish to understand the prevailing view are liable to be deleted. So thank you, gents!

That said, I'm bowing out rather than asking more questions or linking to any more TERFs!
Last edited by skirtyscot on Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby skirtyscot » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:08 am

Going all the way back to the OP, the linked article is a disappointing piece of writing. It makes no attempt to comment on the survey's findings, let alone draw any conclusions. Mind you, the survey itself doesn't try to dig down. 27% think that other people consider them to be non-conforming. So what? How do they know? What traits do the interviewees think mark them out as non-conforming? Does anyone care enough to compliment them or chuck things at them?
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby moonshadow » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:29 am

...and more than a quarter of California Teens could probably care less about anything that's been discussed in this tread...

...just sayin...

As "gender nonconforming" they are not necessarily playing the trans* card. They are simply being whatever they want to be and not being bound by the invisible shock collar fence. [0] Most could care less what they are called. By all rights, many of us here are gender nonconforming, whereas by what we wear and in some of our actions (as mentioned by Ralph, which by the way I share many of his characteristics) do not adhere to 1950's stereotypical gender roles.

For us, and our (men in general) fear of femininity, there is no shock collar.

So run! Be free! Just watch that you don't get hit by a car, and stay out of your neighbors trash! :mrgreen:

FWIW, I do acknowledge transgender people and their struggles. I may not understand it, but it's their life. I will respect their pronouns and practice politeness to the best of my ability. Additionally, if groups of people want to apply the "trans" label to me, I won't be offended or bent out of shape. I understand that under certain definitions of "transgender" I may fit the bill, I also understand that under other definitions I may be considered simply a crossdresser, or transvestite, or just a man in a skirt. If the remark is made in a friendly context, I will not be offended and be grateful for the support as I realize they are just trying to be polite and respectful.

My old landlord in Damascus told me he was happy to defend my "crossdressing" to a few of his campers who objected. He told me to not worry about what people say. Though I do not consider myself a crossdresser I was grateful for the support none the less. I didn't correct him because really, it doesn't matter. Technically, by the most basic definition of the word, I am a crossdresser. I wear clothes intended for women. That makes me a crossdresser. What's not often mentioned is that most women are also crossdressers. But that's a whole different thread....

It's just like when that GoodWill clerk opened the women's fitting room for me. She also was very supportive (I could tell by her demeanor). I didn't stop to correct her, hold up my hand, and insist of using the mens fitting room. They were single occupancy anyway, and once again, she acted out of kindness and support. As many of you know, such sentiments and acts are VERY rare in my world and I don't want to be "that guy" who has to correct everyone all of the time. Sometimes I just want to bask in the love.

I'd rather be called a woman, transgender woman, crossdresser, girlyboy, effeminate, femme, or even a sissy, than to be called a faggot, pedophile, pedo, freak, weirdo, rapist, molester, and many other names I can't say here....

I personally disagree with labeling myself a woman, and transgender woman for both the same reasons, however I am, in essence and by the most basic definition a crossdresser, girlyboy, effeminate, and femme. And you know what...? It is what it is. The shoe does fit. Additionally, if the ever evolving definition of "transgender" eventually scoops me up (in some disciplines, it already has), that too is fine with me. I'm still going to consider myself a man, male, and use masculine pronouns. There will always be people who will consider me trans for the way I am, and others (trans and non-trans alike) who say I'm NOT trans. Who are they to decide what I can be?? What a cluster f__k this has become.

Hopefully these California teens represent the future where none of this will matter and people can just be what they want to be.

[0] Gender roles are like those little flags people put up around their yard to keep their dog on their property. There is a little shock collar on the dogs neck, and when the dog approaches the flags it gives him a little zap. After a while the dog is trained to not cross the line, and the owner can remove the shock collar. Despite the collar being removed, the dog will continue to avoid the boundary and stay in the yard.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Caultron » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:49 am

skirtyscot wrote:Going all the way back to the OP, the linked article is a disappointing piece of writing. It makes no attempt to comment on the survey's findings, let alone draw any conclusions. Mind you, the survey itself doesn't try to dig down. 27% think that other people consider them to be non-conforming. So what? How do they know? What traits do the interviewees think mark them out as non-conforming? Does anyone care enough to compliment them or chuck things at them?

Agreed. I wish they had asked some questions about why they felt other people consider them to be gender non-confirming.

Like, do guys who aren't on the football team think that makes other people considered them fem?

I doubt that but I do hope they collect more detail next year.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Steve » Fri Jan 05, 2018 2:57 am

Parts of this thread reminded me of this old blog post ( https://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2013/09/real_men_want_to_drink_guinnes.html ) even though it seems a bit orthogonal to the direction of the thread, but does talk a bit about society and gender expectations.

Some relevant bits that caught my eye on a re-read:

My interest here is not the tricks the ad uses to get you to like Guinness, but what the fact of the existence of such an ad says about American men today. It's bad. It's really, really bad.

[...]

Tagline:
Dedication.
Loyalty.
Friendship.


I'm sorry, is this an ad for beer or golden retrievers? Why not "good nutrition" or "isn't always yapping about her frenemies"? Just because the guy saying them sounds like a man doesn't mean these words are branding for men. Usually "male" values are the things you have to teach or encourage people to do, like bravery, or sacrifice, or stoicism, where the default, the easier thing, is to not do those things. Dedication and friendship don't code for men, they are too basic for men, they code simply for person, although women get associated with them because... not much more is expected of women. For whatever reason society has made the observation that women seem to be worse at friendship then men, and that reason is called TV [...]. It's not that these values are inferior, it's that you can't imagine someone else needs to praise them-- or that any person alive or dead would feel good about themselves for having them-- or would seek to be described this way. "I'm a good friend." Of course you are, there's no sacrifice involved, plus it gives you someone to talk at. This Guinness ad is for the demographic that aspires to positive experiences and pretend challenges buried in rhetorical cover so to avoid the guilt about its meaninglessness. "The cedar roasted asparagus has good chew. I don't know how to enjoy it, so I'll Instagram it."

Wheelchair b-ball is nice but it has nothing to do with being a man or masculinity, or females and femininity, or anything, and the point here is that the public's desire to link it to masculinity is a sign of three very bad things: a) a pervasive sense of insecurity and inadequacy in many men which has a precise psychoanalytic characterization that I will not elaborate on here and which the ad reassures you is soooo not true, you loyal friend, you-- you're a real man; b) another example of the media teaching people how to want, how to think, in this case about themselves; c) the general public's exhaustion with masculine men who don't deliver on their masculinity, i.e. and e.g. getting the check.


The Guinness ad proposes that what makes men men is that they don't act like stereotypical men, if and only if they look like stereotypical men, otherwise they're not men. That sentence is 100% correct, but it could only have been written by a madman. Reshoot that commercial using the cast of The Big Bang Theory and the entire aspirational message is obliterated. The mere fact that they took stereotypical-looking men to use as contrasts to "stereotypical men" means they themselves assume that "stereotypical men" are indeed the real men, everyone else is waiting to be labeled, by some other omnipotent entity, that they are close."


[About a different Cadillac commercial] "Hold on. You're saying that Cadillac assumes if I hate this ad I'm like, a... loser?" Etc, and so forth. Love and hate are opposites for lovers, not ads, for ads the goal is to stimulate want through any emotion convenient.

Tagline: Ladies, it's all in how you get there, because you're on your own.

This is what the ad is telling women, and you, its foundational assumption: the public's exhaustion with men who don't deliver on their masculinity, their general loss of ambition, drive, respectfulness... and purpose; coupled with men's haunting suspicion that their true worth-- "in other people's minds"-- is signaled by women's opinions of them, after all, money, jobs-- all that is fake. Hence the need for something to redefine masculinity, to make it real.

"Well, feminism has emasculated men." Really? A girl did that to you?


I'm still trying to piece together in my head what in this discussion made me think of that old blog post and how to turn those thoughts into something coherent. Something to do with identity-by-action being far more powerful and meaningful than identity-by-declaration or identity-by-presentation.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Daryl » Fri Jan 05, 2018 6:04 am

pelmut wrote:
crfriend wrote:I actually sense something entirely different. What I see is the artificial creation of dozens of tiny little "trans-* boxes", each correlating to a "diagnosis" and the tightening of the "normal" box into something that's starting to resemble a singularity. It's time for the singularity to expand again, in a glorious "Big Bang" and return to it's normal, inclusive, state.

This is a problem inherent in digitising an analogue quantity, you can represent it with an ever-increasing number of bits or, at the other extreme, you can draw an arbitrary dividing line and digitise it as a single two-state bit. The former is more accurate but the latter is easier for the layman to understand or to number-crunch.

I agree that dozens of little "trans-* boxes" isnt a helpful way to proceed (especially when they are inaccurately used by people who don't appear to have a grasp of the fundamentals), but rolling everything into one doesn't help either because we would be heading back to the ignorance and intolerance of the 1950 (white macho heterosexual male is normal, everything else must be must be inferior or a perversion).

I don't see the tightening of the "normal" box which you describe, perhaps it is something which hasn't happened here yet. The concept of "normality" in the U.K. seems to be getting wider and wide - in fact, the box around it has disintegrated.


FINALLY we have some digital vs. analogue analogies...much easier ground for some of us here to work in!

And I knew that ultimately we agreed in the big picture. My reactions on this topic are partly conditioned by what is happening here. Deniers deny this but well-meaning people propelled by the authority of academics asked to help craft policy have created a situation where individuals can pretty much invent "trans boxes" at will, assert them as their correct identities, and use force of law to cause others to refer to them by unique and fanciful gender definitions and pronouns. The argument is about compelled speech versus reasonable accomodation. And the issue also includes whether or not schools should pander to and therefore promote children's imaginations being declared as facts that all of society has to play along with but which will ultimately harm their ability to integrate socially (and that's a real harm).

I remember being intrigued by tri-state logic chips. The utility of the "hi z" state is undeniable and I think analogous to third gender. If they had asked me to craft policy (and for some reason they never do :( ) I'd have probably suggested formalising a third gender to serve both the purpose of being the replacement for the so-called "singular they" for people who don't want to be binarily gendered, and to serve as a universal less familiar (less presumptuous) mode of reference or identification (much like the tu/vous distinction in French). This way people who genuinely don't want to be gendered (which in our world means binarily gendered) have an option and people wishing to be very etiquette-cautious will know what to do. The third gender would be neutral, applicable to anyone, NOT indicative of mixed gender. (similar to how Ms is neutral on marital status, not expressing an alternative kind of marriage)

On "tightening" of the "normal" box, ultimately the analogy works in both directions. Expansion to be meaningless by virtue of including everything, or contraction to be meaningless by virtue of including nothing, are equivalent.

P.S. I wouldn't mind a return to 1950s or even 1940s fashions, just not the intolerance.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby pelmut » Fri Jan 05, 2018 10:37 am

Daryl wrote:I remember being intrigued by tri-state logic chips. The utility of the "hi z" state is undeniable and I think analogous to third gender. If they had asked me to craft policy (and for some reason they never do :( ) I'd have probably suggested formalising a third gender to serve both the purpose of being the replacement for the so-called "singular they" for people who don't want to be binarily gendered, and to serve as a universal less familiar (less presumptuous) mode of reference or identification (much like the tu/vous distinction in French). This way people who genuinely don't want to be gendered (which in our world means binarily gendered) have an option and people wishing to be very etiquette-cautious will know what to do. The third gender would be neutral, applicable to anyone, NOT indicative of mixed gender. (similar to how Ms is neutral on marital status, not expressing an alternative kind of marriage)

Brilliant analogy, the "hi-z" state isn't a defineable third voltage level, it is simply the absence of the other two (and could even include them under certain conditions).
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby pelmut » Fri Jan 05, 2018 2:11 pm

Daryl wrote:...And the issue also includes whether or not schools should pander to and therefore promote children's imaginations being declared as facts that all of society has to play along with but which will ultimately harm their ability to integrate socially (and that's a real harm).

I think if you view this, by the mother of a trans child, you will see the clear difference between a passing fantasy and the child's absolute and persistent certainty that she is feminine, despite how her body has developed. She is not "gender confused", but some of the adults around her were, initially.

Compare that with this, where the parents refused to believe their child because reality conflicted with their religious beliefs.

I am pleased to say that so-called "conversion therapy" for homosexual and transgender people is now illegal in most western countries.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Stu » Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:41 pm

pelmut

I think the main issue with conversion therapy is that is doesn't appear to work. I would have no problem with consenting adults choosing to undergo such therapy if there was evidence that it did work.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby pelmut » Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:05 pm

Stu wrote:pelmut

I think the main issue with conversion therapy is that is doesn't appear to work.

Conversion Therapy not only doesn't work but sometimes causes death; it seems to belong in the same category as a lot of other harmful religious cults.

Stu wrote:...I would have no problem with consenting adults choosing to undergo such therapy if there was evidence that it did work.

This is a difficult one: how far do you go in preventing people from becoming the victims of their own gullibiity? I think the law generally has got it right; not by restricting the rights of people to be manipulated if they so choose, but by restricting the freedom of others to manipulate them when the outcome is very likely to be harmful for the victim and the perpretator has, in the past, shrugged his shoulders and walked away scott free.

Where children are concerned the situation is much clearer, parents should not be allowed to inflict something as hateful and harmful as Conversion Therapy on the children who depend on them.
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Fred in Skirts » Fri Jan 05, 2018 7:36 pm

I found this in another forum I read. I found it interesting but somewhat wrong in it's interpretation of gender.

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/when-did-girls-start-wearing-pink-1370097/

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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby Stu » Fri Jan 05, 2018 7:51 pm

pelmut wrote:Conversion Therapy not only doesn't work but sometimes causes death; it seems to belong in the same category as a lot of other harmful religious cults.


Indeed. Anything claiming scientific legitimacy should have to demonstrate it is both safe and effective. With regard to religious cults, then if their only strategy is faith, prayer etc, then let them get on with it.

pelmut wrote:how far do you go in preventing people from becoming the victims of their own gullibiity?


I think the protection should go about as far as assuming adults have a reasonable degree of common sense, and shouldn't be treated like children, or given the level of protection that children are entitled to expect. We have to strike a balance. On the one hand, we don't want people to be exploited but, on the other hand, we don't want to restrict their basic freedoms to know about and, if they so choose, undertake treatments. If someone sees a church ad which states you can "pray the gay away" or something like that, then they know - or should know - what they are getting into if they decide to try it. If treatment involves medical, psychiatric or psychological intervention, then that should be permitted if, and only if, those offering it can demonstrate it is safe, and has a reasonable chance of achieving the desired outcome. Just as I wouldn't deny a trans person their treatment to transition, similarly I wouldn't deny a trans person who wanted to be free of the gender dysphoria without changing sex the treatment to accomplish that. Similarly, I wouldn't deny a gay person the chance to change their sexuality if that were possible, which i don't believe it is right now (although it may be one day).

I guess are views are close :D
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Re: More Than A Quarter Of California Teens Are Gender Nonco

Postby pelmut » Fri Jan 05, 2018 8:50 pm

Stu wrote:... If someone sees a church ad which states you can "pray the gay away" or something like that, then they know - or should know - what they are getting into if they decide to try it....

That's all right as long as they are acting under their own free will. The serious danger is when someone who has power over them uses that power to force them into it. Parent to child, boss to employee, religious leader to member of congregation or politician who gets it enshrined in law. Fortunately there have been very few cases of this actually happening, but it doesn't stop the bigots from continuing to try.
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