[Image description – Images of the lesbian, trans, bi, agender, aromantic, asexual, nonbinary, pan and the black and brown rainbow pride flag with the text: Radfems begone. End description.]
Quit fucking straw-manning radical feminists. The original radicals were radically pan. And clumsily but very earnestly intersectional. Most were also radically tolerant. Yeah, a lot of women go through an essentialist phase on their way to real radicalization. But unless they’re trauma survivors the outgrow it pretty quickly.
It’s just weird how many progressives learn everything they “know” about radical feminism from goddamn Rush Limbaugh, Pat Robertson, and Mike Huckabee. ????
—— update ——
Just a heads up that there’s a shit ton of difference between radical feminists and trans-exclusive “radical feminists” or terfs, who are a pretty small subset. And who, tbh seem more regressive and gender-conservative than radical.
I’ve never been very impressed with the authors who constituted that splinter group, like Germaine Greer, Judith Butler, Sheila Jeffries, Robert Jensen, and that ilk. And meanwhile no less than both Andrea Dworkin and Katharine MacKinnon correctly saw trans people as radically undermining gender norms.
And Shulamuth Firestone, who influenced me the most, wrote “[T]he end goal of feminist revolution must be, unlike that of the first feminist movement, not just the elimination of male privilege but of the sex distinction itself: genital differences between human beings would no longer matter culturally.” That’s hardly trans exclusive! Or anti-asexual. Or anti bisexual (ahahah, definitely not!) or anti pan, etc!
Note: I can have other problems with some of those authors while acknowledging they generally weren’t exclusionary.
To (try to be) be fair, some of the more principled (less unprincipled?) original terfs felt that trans people reinforce social constructions of gender. But tbh I suspect they’re more focused on the extreme reinforcement of constructed and subordinated femininity by, for instance, emphatically and aggressively male “drag queens” than by actual trans women or men who just want to live in the right bodies.
But still! By refusing to distinguish between the likes of Milton Berle, Rudy Giuliani, and RuPaul on the one hand and real trans people there really isn’t much excuse for terfs. ????