Wednesday, 17 August 2011

My Opinion on Gender; A Clarification

I would like to clarify what I meant when I stated that I think that gender roles are invented by society.

What I meant was;  little girls don't have to like pink.  They don't have to like dolls.  They don't have to like playing house, or make up, or clothes, and they don't have to grow up to be mothers who watch soap operas and gossip.  Those things do not make you a woman, and, likewise, things like liking blue and toy cars do not make you a man.

Baby Krav Vegan rejects your gender norms and replaces them with the Wombles.

This doesn't mean that gender doesn't exist or doesn't matter.  Just that you don't get to judge someone as not being a 'real' man or woman based on such ridiculous criteria.

I am cisgendered, and I think this is why my gender is not a big issue for me.  Air isn't a big deal for me either, and that's because I can breathe right now.  However, for those individuals who are not cisgendered, who, for whatever reason, feel that their outsides don't match their insides...I have no problem with them fixing it.  I don't see why it would ever be my (or anyone elses') business to have a problem with them fixing it.  I do not mind sharing a public bathroom with those individuals, or seeing them at a feminist meeting, or even having one as a rape counsellor.

I felt the need to clarify this, as the statement 'gender doesn't exist' has been used by Julie Bindel to mean something very, very different to what I meant when I said it.  To my mind, her opinions are cruel, narrow-minded, self-centred, and reprehensible, and I do not wish my opinions to be confused for anything like hers.

Transgendered people are not unhappy with the constraints of "their gender", by which Bindel means their biological gender.  It's more that their biological gender is not accurate, as far as I understand.  It's like calling me male, or a natural blonde; there's nothing wrong with those things, but they simply do not describe me.  It has nothing to do with gender constraints, it has to do with accuracy (as far as I understand, for most people I know, bearing in mind that I am both young and cisgendered).

While on the topic of Julie Bindel's opinions, I was very surprised to find that sexuality came with a uniform, as she describes in the last few paragraphs of that article.  For reals?

As a feminist, I do not object to anyone expressing their gender however they choose.  What I object to is other people telling them that this is wrong.

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