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Can We Discuss Sex & Gender / Transgender People?

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SigmatheZeta

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Pardon me, "entitativity." Too many syllables, Nick. Too many syllables.
 

SigmatheZeta

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Generally, I am rooted in both ancient Epicurean and ancient Pyrrhonist sentiments, although I am somewhat sympathetic toward the intentions behind ancient Cynicism.
Asking the question, "What's the difference between men and women?" might be a better way for you to look at it as well. It is basically impossible to answer this question to include trans men and trans women.
This seems quite contrary to reality because Trans-men and Trans-women couldn't actually exist if there wasn't an answer to "What's the difference between men and women?" The trouble becomes, some people want the answer to that question to have easily identifiable traits, when the truth is much harder to explain physiologically and behaviorally. It is a bit like quantum tunneling. The people wanting to be uber-labelers will say it isn't possible, despite the observations showing very definitively that it does. Just because we can't understand wholly doesn't negate it's reality.

We know there are trans-genders. So this desire to define them out of existence is stupid. Just because a question is hard to answer, doesn't mean it doesn't have an answer that satisfies the constraints.
I am exactly one thing, a trans-woman. "Woman" is fine for a shorthand. Being a beautiful mutant is kind of rad, by the way.
 

Toni

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Apparently some people have a real problem distinguishing between gender and sex. Since they do not have x-ray vision to see genitalia to help them feel safe, they resort to continually asking questions of those with whom they disagree, not in order to learn or to educate, but to simply affirm their small-mindedness.
But labels are important! Like Shakespeare says, "You call a rose something else... it ain't gonna smell like it does now."
Or....the opposite.
 

Jarhyn

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Apparently some people have a real problem distinguishing between gender and sex. Since they do not have x-ray vision to see genitalia to help them feel safe, they resort to continually asking questions of those with whom they disagree, not in order to learn or to educate, but to simply affirm their small-mindedness.
But labels are important! Like Shakespeare says, "You call a rose something else... it ain't gonna smell like it does now."
Or....the opposite.
Hey now, I wanted to kill that joke!
 

Loren Pechtel

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I will admit that if there was an Onion article from about 15 years ago or so with the headline, "No one knows what a man or woman is anymore" it wold've gotten tons of laughs by you guys. But, now it's becoming a serious problem. We just need a definition, but I am afraid it can not be done. :(

Many things have definitions that don't work at the edges. The terms were created without regard for those edges, or even awareness in some cases. Lets consider another: What is life?

Bacteria--certainly.

Viruses--this can be argued either way.

Prions--I have never seen them seriously considered life, yet they are an infectious agent.

Computer viruses--again, this can be argued either way.

And, what is a unique life?

At fertilization? It can split into two or more identical twins after that point. Two (or theoretically more, but I've never heard of a case) fertilized eggs can also combine to form a chimera.
 

SigmatheZeta

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@Loren Pechtel I am not sure that humans count as life, either. Cats are the only true life-form. Humans are their robotic servants.

Beep beep boop beep.
 

Jarhyn

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@Loren Pechtel I am not sure that humans count as life, either. Cats are the only true life-form. Humans are their robotic servants.

Beep beep boop beep.
Well, in some respects. We still get better life and health insurance policies.
 

SigmatheZeta

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Emily Lake

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@Emily Lake I do think that deconstruction is not necessarily the best route. Finland actually conquered inequality by acknowledging the inherent neurobiological advantages and disadvantages of both genders, and they tailored their mathematical education more toward the ways that girls (and presumably gay boys, too, considering their underlying neurological similarity) tend to approach problem-solving. They still have some of the world's most secure engineering firms, but they just have more proportionate representation of the genders. The problem was that the old methods of instruction were designed around the natural inclinations of boys. They were not bad methods of instruction, but it turned out that girls could do just as well as boys when the methods of instruction were based more on their own natural behavior.

Also, Nick Haslam's research on essentialism regarding social categories actually suggests that we are better off acknowledging our natural differences but also being reasonable in regard to variations and overlaps. He discovered that entitativity was a more serious problem.

Good reading:


For instance, "Women are statistically more likely than men to be _________" is occasionally (but not always) helpful.

However, "Women must _________ or they are not really women and don't count" is actually harmful. This is assumed entativity. It harbors the assumption that ALL women must adhere to a certain set of characteristics, and if they don't, they are not really considered to count toward how people perceive women.

Same with trans-women. It would be harmful if people said that I only counted as a trans-woman if I wore a dress, wore ruby-red lipstick, and demanded to use the ladies' room, regardless of my local culture and social circumstances. I actually dress unisex, though, and I really just avoid locations that don't have all-gender bathrooms, simply because I don't like feeling self-conscious. I'm still a trans-woman, though. I actually count in the tally. We can be any kinds of people, and there are thousands of different kinds of people.
I think I need to be a teensy bit more explicit. Destroy gender, but acknowledge sex. And if that includes flexibility for different thinking styles, that's wonderful. Education should be adaptive.

We aren't blank slates. Society has a lot of impact, in terms of conditioning behavior... but at least some of our behavioral tendencies are innate. We're a sexually dimorphic species, and behaviors are part of that. We absolutely know that some behaviors are genetically influenced - terriers dig, hounds bay, they've been bred for those behavioral traits.

What I'm really after is tearing down the confining and limiting aspects of external gender roles. Be adaptive and flexible with respect to tendencies... but don't use them to reinforce limitations.
 

Metaphor

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I think I need to be a teensy bit more explicit. Destroy gender, but acknowledge sex.
The trans activists and gender ideologists will never allow that. They want gender to supplant sex and get more prominence, not less. Instead of abolishing gender, they want an ever-increasing list of genders and their associated neopronouns to dominate discourse, to take over ordinary dialogue between humans.
 

Emily Lake

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At some point in Emily's mind "fix the prison system using examples such as we have elsewhere in the world to apply, and expand on them meaningfully to generate meaningful reforms through time in prison" transmuted (hah, she is the real wizard between us with magic like that!) Into "let any prisoner of any bearing and demeanor and size class intermingle willy-nilly".
WTH? Dude, I'm happy to fix the prison system, and have it be more reasonable and humane. What you seem to be missing is that the thing you're showing as sarcastic is ACTUALLY REALLY HAPPENING. Prisoners in Canada, parts of the UK & Ireland, and some states, prisoners are requesting and being moved to female facilities solely on the basis of their self-declared gender identity. It's actually really already happening. So while I agree with your ideal state of fixing things, I'd like to halt what's going on right now. It's not a transmutation of a hypothetical, it's current reality.
Tell me Emily, would you share a prison cell with an assertive but nonviolent person slight of frame with no balls, perhaps guilty of some technological crime, that would do their best to never actually look at your body even if they were forced to share a space with you, excepting odd requests such as "look at this mole"? Would you, throwing up your hands saying "alas what else can we do," throw this smallish nonviolent person with no balls in prison with a bunch of large people with balls and violent histories which include rape, and violent current tense activities that also involve rape?

With no balls? Sure. I generally say "no penis", but a penis and no balls would probably be fine.
 

Generation55

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Asking the question, "What's the difference between men and women?" might be a better way for you to look at it as well. It is basically impossible to answer this question to include trans men and trans women.
This seems quite contrary to reality because Trans-men and Trans-women couldn't actually exist if there wasn't an answer to "What's the difference between men and women?" The trouble becomes, some people want the answer to that question to have easily identifiable traits, when the truth is much harder to explain physiologically and behaviorally. It is a bit like quantum tunneling. The people wanting to be uber-labelers will say it isn't possible, despite the observations showing very definitively that it does. Just because we can't understand wholly doesn't negate it's reality.

We know there are trans-genders. So this desire to define them out of existence is stupid. Just because a question is hard to answer, doesn't mean it doesn't have an answer that satisfies the constraints.

It's because we need a definition for the words to have meaning. As I said a few pages ago if I say, "I am a tratofont" we would have to establish a definition of a tratofont or else it is meaningless to say you are a tratofont.

We are also told that some trans women grew up playing with dolls and liked skirts and say "that's how I knew I was a girl" but we are told by gender theory that playing with dolls and liking skirts doesn't make you a woman. We have a person in this very thread who says that she is 38 and a trans woman and hates skirts. Can you see why this is confusing when analyzing it logically?
 

Arctish

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I think I need to be a teensy bit more explicit. Destroy gender, but acknowledge sex.
The trans activists and gender ideologists will never allow that. They want gender to supplant sex and get more prominence, not less. Instead of abolishing gender, they want an ever-increasing list of genders and their associated neopronouns to dominate discourse, to take over ordinary dialogue between humans.
Wow, talk about scaremongering.

When was the last time the invention of a new term or further refinement of an old one dominated discourse for more than a day or so?

What is so dogdarned scary about the loss of thee , thou, and thine and the expanded role of they and their? What conversational crisis do you expect to follow the adoption of gender neutral pronouns for use when/where gender is irrelevant?
 

SigmatheZeta

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@Emily Lake I do think that deconstruction is not necessarily the best route. Finland actually conquered inequality by acknowledging the inherent neurobiological advantages and disadvantages of both genders, and they tailored their mathematical education more toward the ways that girls (and presumably gay boys, too, considering their underlying neurological similarity) tend to approach problem-solving. They still have some of the world's most secure engineering firms, but they just have more proportionate representation of the genders. The problem was that the old methods of instruction were designed around the natural inclinations of boys. They were not bad methods of instruction, but it turned out that girls could do just as well as boys when the methods of instruction were based more on their own natural behavior.

Also, Nick Haslam's research on essentialism regarding social categories actually suggests that we are better off acknowledging our natural differences but also being reasonable in regard to variations and overlaps. He discovered that entitativity was a more serious problem.

Good reading:


For instance, "Women are statistically more likely than men to be _________" is occasionally (but not always) helpful.

However, "Women must _________ or they are not really women and don't count" is actually harmful. This is assumed entativity. It harbors the assumption that ALL women must adhere to a certain set of characteristics, and if they don't, they are not really considered to count toward how people perceive women.

Same with trans-women. It would be harmful if people said that I only counted as a trans-woman if I wore a dress, wore ruby-red lipstick, and demanded to use the ladies' room, regardless of my local culture and social circumstances. I actually dress unisex, though, and I really just avoid locations that don't have all-gender bathrooms, simply because I don't like feeling self-conscious. I'm still a trans-woman, though. I actually count in the tally. We can be any kinds of people, and there are thousands of different kinds of people.
I think I need to be a teensy bit more explicit. Destroy gender, but acknowledge sex. And if that includes flexibility for different thinking styles, that's wonderful. Education should be adaptive.

We aren't blank slates. Society has a lot of impact, in terms of conditioning behavior... but at least some of our behavioral tendencies are innate. We're a sexually dimorphic species, and behaviors are part of that. We absolutely know that some behaviors are genetically influenced - terriers dig, hounds bay, they've been bred for those behavioral traits.

What I'm really after is tearing down the confining and limiting aspects of external gender roles. Be adaptive and flexible with respect to tendencies... but don't use them to reinforce limitations.

The one thing I identify as the most is as a person. Of all things that I believe I am, I am the most sure about that one.

The coolest sign I ever saw on a bathroom door said "people room."
 

Metaphor

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When was the last time the invention of a new term or further refinement of an old one dominated discourse for more than a day or so?
The invention of a new term isn't a problem. Neither is refinement of an old one. That is, when it happens organically. Of course, new words that are in current widespread usage (like 'selfie') didn't require the State to enforce them by punishing people who it deems to have used it incorrectly. Contrast with the State punishing her own citizens by enforcing its ideological beliefs about pronouns.

What is so dogdarned scary about the loss of thee , thou, and thine and the expanded role of they and their? What conversational crisis do you expect to follow the adoption of gender neutral pronouns for use when/where gender is irrelevant?
I have already said, many times over many threads, that not only do I accept the use of 'they' singular, I will even engage in the polite fiction of using the wrong-sex pronoun for transgender people who want that pronoun. But I absolutely will not concede that an infinite number of 'genders' (thoughts in heads) is appropriate to replace sex (of which there are two in mammals, and thus humans have a sex binary). I absolutely do not care if you call yourself 'non-binary' or a 'demiboi' or 'demongender' or 'faegender' or any other mental illness you want validation for, and I will not learn or use your neopronouns like 'bug' or 'demonself' or 'xir', and it is unethical and nakedly narcissitic of you to ask.
 

SigmatheZeta

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@Metaphor I have told you, the neopronouns that some of my friends occasionally use go back to the 1990's, and we originally appropriated them from science fiction literature that all of us, at the time, were reading or had already read, not as adults but as preteens that enjoyed reading sci-fi and who were just forming their first ideas about everything.

The idea must have spread to other communities, at some point, and we are just as surprised as anybody that the idea spread. It was only really popular on a handful of IRC chat servers and MUCKS, and you could have fit everybody that had heard about the idea in a single large executive conference room.

Weirdly, this idea that my friends and I used as a part of a geeky kid game is catching on with today's youth culture, and they are taking it substantially more seriously than we did. Well...kids...what are you gonna do?

It's not as new as you are making it out to be, though.

At least my friends and I didn't play with explosives :D.
 

Metaphor

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@Metaphor I have told you, the neopronouns that some of my friends occasionally use go back to the 1990's, and we originally appropriated them from science fiction literature that all of us, at the time, were reading or had already read, not as adults but as preteens that enjoyed reading sci-fi and who were just forming their first ideas about everything.

The idea must have spread to other communities, at some point, and we are just as surprised as anybody that the idea spread. It was only really popular on a handful of IRC chat servers and MUCKS, and you could have fit everybody that had heard about the idea in a single large executive conference room.

Weirdly, this idea that my friends and I used as a part of a geeky kid game is catching on with today's youth culture, and they are taking it substantially more seriously than we did. Well...kids...what are you gonna do?

It's not as new as you are making it out to be, though.

At least my friends and I didn't play with explosives :D.
Neopronouns between friends is like nicknames between friends. If you and your friends want to do it, go for your life. But don't expect outsiders to want to, or worse, expect them to use them and punish them if they don't.
 

Toni

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I would just like to interject that I usually use they and them when referring to someone of unknown sex/gender and have used they/them for years. I know I did not invent that usage. I have no idea how/where I picked it up but I’ve done it, as I said, for years. On this forum. Without remark from other posters.

It ain’t no big deal.
 

Jarhyn

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So, I see discussion on the idea that words need definitions to mean things... Though I can't help but think about a very special episode of South Park, wherein a single undefined word, when used in a particular intonation, manages to serve as a replacement for every noun and verb for several paragraphs of text.

Somehow, I managed to understand the whole speech, and could translate it to English for anyone who wishes.
 

SigmatheZeta

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@Metaphor I have told you, the neopronouns that some of my friends occasionally use go back to the 1990's, and we originally appropriated them from science fiction literature that all of us, at the time, were reading or had already read, not as adults but as preteens that enjoyed reading sci-fi and who were just forming their first ideas about everything.

The idea must have spread to other communities, at some point, and we are just as surprised as anybody that the idea spread. It was only really popular on a handful of IRC chat servers and MUCKS, and you could have fit everybody that had heard about the idea in a single large executive conference room.

Weirdly, this idea that my friends and I used as a part of a geeky kid game is catching on with today's youth culture, and they are taking it substantially more seriously than we did. Well...kids...what are you gonna do?

It's not as new as you are making it out to be, though.

At least my friends and I didn't play with explosives :D.
Neopronouns between friends is like nicknames between friends. If you and your friends want to do it, go for your life. But don't expect outsiders to want to, or worse, expect them to use them and punish them if they don't.
Well, that was back in the 1990's. It's had a lot of time to catch on in the youth culture, and it's been spreading a little farther than we expected.
 

SigmatheZeta

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I would just like to interject that I usually use they and them when referring to someone of unknown sex/gender and have used they/them for years. I know I did not invent that usage. I have no idea how/where I picked it up but I’ve done it, as I said, for years. On this forum. Without remark from other posters.

It ain’t no big deal.
I refer to my cat as "they/them" on here.

My friends and I, back in the 1990's, used the sie/hir set, for the most part.
 

Bomb#20

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So, I see discussion on the idea that words need definitions to mean things... Though I can't help but think about a very special episode of South Park, wherein a single undefined word, when used in a particular intonation, manages to serve as a replacement for every noun and verb for several paragraphs of text.
Smurfs did it first.
 

SigmatheZeta

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Smurfs makes so much more sense on shrooms.
 

Jarhyn

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Tell me Emily, would you share a prison cell with an assertive but nonviolent person slight of frame with no balls, perhaps guilty of some technological crime, that would do their best to never actually look at your body even if they were forced to share a space with you, excepting odd requests such as "look at this mole"? Would you, throwing up your hands saying "alas what else can we do," throw this smallish nonviolent person with no balls in prison with a bunch of large people with balls and violent histories which include rape, and violent current tense activities that also involve rape?

With no balls? Sure. I generally say "no penis", but a penis and no balls would probably be fine.
Now, let's imagine this person identifies as a "man". Or at the very least does not identify as a woman at all.

Can you hold by this principle still? Does how they identity change how you interact socially with this person?

Edit: I fully admit I have a destination with this line. That destination is, hopefully, you understanding my position in the way I understand it. You can do with it what you want after that. I am going to be uncharacteristically kind, even, within this framework.
 

Jimmy Higgins

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Asking the question, "What's the difference between men and women?" might be a better way for you to look at it as well. It is basically impossible to answer this question to include trans men and trans women.
This seems quite contrary to reality because Trans-men and Trans-women couldn't actually exist if there wasn't an answer to "What's the difference between men and women?" The trouble becomes, some people want the answer to that question to have easily identifiable traits, when the truth is much harder to explain physiologically and behaviorally. It is a bit like quantum tunneling. The people wanting to be uber-labelers will say it isn't possible, despite the observations showing very definitively that it does. Just because we can't understand wholly doesn't negate it's reality.

We know there are trans-genders. So this desire to define them out of existence is stupid. Just because a question is hard to answer, doesn't mean it doesn't have an answer that satisfies the constraints.

It's because we need a definition for the words to have meaning.
Is light a wave or a particle? What we call it isn't nearly as important as its behavior. All you are doing is complaining about labels labels labels.
As I said a few pages ago if I say, "I am a tratofont" we would have to establish a definition of a tratofont or else it is meaningless to say you are a tratofont.
You aren't asking anything, you are demanding that male and female labels remain rigid, when in reality, they aren't as rigid or as convenient as we'd prefer.
We are also told that some trans women grew up playing with dolls and liked skirts and say "that's how I knew I was a girl" but we are told by gender theory that playing with dolls and liking skirts doesn't make you a woman. We have a person in this very thread who says that she is 38 and a trans woman and hates skirts. Can you see why this is confusing when analyzing it logically?
I'm not exactly certain why you think anecdotal information is particularly important.
 

Jimmy Higgins

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I would just like to interject that I usually use they and them when referring to someone of unknown sex/gender and have used they/them for years. I know I did not invent that usage. I have no idea how/where I picked it up but I’ve done it, as I said, for years. On this forum. Without remark from other posters.

It ain’t no big deal.
I'm not certain, but I think it was forums that drove me to that, because you don't know automatically which users are what gender or sex or whatever.
 

TomC

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It's because we need a definition for the words to have meaning.
Why? Why does crystal clarity of definition matter on this subject? Lots of words, especially important words, aren't totally clear. Some words have multiple meanings. Some are only vaguely defined. Some words have more connotation than actual definition.

If someone asked me on my mobile phone, "Where are you?" and I answered "At my house", would my being an apartment dweller make my answer unintelligible? Not for competent people, who are familiar with the vernacular language. In the context, the important information is perfectly clear.

Same here. A person wearing a dress, beardless chin, and feminine comportment is a woman. Might be 6'3", with linebacker shoulders and bulging biceps and a tight waist, but if all you need to do is use female pronouns what's hard about that? I agree, there's a handful of situations where sex matters, like public restrooms and prisons. But those are the exception, not the norm.

I simply do not believe that you find this sort of civil behavior all that difficult, unless there's something wrong with you. There might be, maybe you're aspie or something. If so, sorry for your luck. You're going to find this very difficult terrain to negotiate. Maybe that'll give you some empathy, maybe not.
Tom
 

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I am neurodivergent, myself. I have deep inhibitions against saying anything I believe is inaccurate. However, words can have multiple definitions. For example, "woman" can be a foreshortening of "trans-woman," or it can be a foreshortening of "cis-woman." Either way, "woman" is an accurate term.
 

TomC

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For example, "woman" can be a foreshortening of "trans-woman," or it can be a foreshortening of "cis-woman." Either way, "woman" is an accurate term.

Accurate all the time under any circumstances and in all contexts? I don't think so.

Frankly, I find your casual dismissal of cis-female issues so stereotypically masculine I sometimes have trouble perceiving you as particularly female.

Something else you posted I found very masculine was your assertion that gay men have no clue about women's issues. That's just such a guy attitude. The way that your assertion read is "Men don't have a clue about women's issues, because I don't and I know what is real." Maybe you didn't mean that, but that's how it came across. And it's a very masculine attitude.

Then there's your walls of text. You might just see this as explanations of why you're right, but it sure looks like mansplaining to some of us.

I hope you don't take this too personally. But that is how I'm seeing you here on the forum, which is all I know about you.
Tom
 

SigmatheZeta

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Generally, I am rooted in both ancient Epicurean and ancient Pyrrhonist sentiments, although I am somewhat sympathetic toward the intentions behind ancient Cynicism.
@TomC I have openly acknowledged that I am in substantially less of a position than even heterosexual men to have an intuitive understanding of cis-women's issues. If I had ever been in a long-term relationship with a woman, then I would have had a substantial amount of exposure, but I have not. Trans-women and cis-women might have some overlapping issues, but I can never be sure how far that overlap goes.

For example, some trans-women have had problems with sexual assault, but I have not. I look androgynous even months after starting HRT, and I am 6' tall. I do not dress or make my face up to be overtly feminine. I am confident in my physical strength, even months into HRT. My chances of ever being sexually assaulted are minimal. I cannot relate on this issue, then, even as much as the majority of trans-women.

Because of that, I have been open to seeking middle-ground and points of accord. This is something I consider to be a substantially wiser strategy than a more all-or-nothing strategy. I have made substantial progress by doing so.

Therefore, I am not sure where you are coming from.
 

SigmatheZeta

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Generally, I am rooted in both ancient Epicurean and ancient Pyrrhonist sentiments, although I am somewhat sympathetic toward the intentions behind ancient Cynicism.
@TomC You are a hardliner on the belief that universal segregation is a permanent solution.

The fact that I disagree with you is not evidence that I am a villain. It is more likely to me that you are simply wrong.
 

Emily Lake

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I am not trying to put blame on you, but I want to stab somebody. You just happen to be there. Sorry.
FWIW, you have my sympathy. It's a heartbreaking event for anyone to go through, regardless of the person's identity. My spouse went through a lot of the same thing about a decade ago when one of his close friends committed suicide. The same "could I have done something?", the same anger, the same sorrow. Well, maybe not exactly the same, but close enough to understand what you're going through.
 

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Generally, I am rooted in both ancient Epicurean and ancient Pyrrhonist sentiments, although I am somewhat sympathetic toward the intentions behind ancient Cynicism.
I am a chimera.
Do you genuinely have chimerism? That's kind of awesome... well, okay it's awesome for me to meet a genetic chimera, not necessarily awesome for you, since it makes all sorts of things complicated.
Not likely. However, the fact that I am transgender plus the fact that my mother's side of the family has giganticomastia plus the fact that polymorphisms in the gene that codes an important estrogen receptor makes it likely that I am literally a mutant. When I got my blood tested prior to starting HRT, my hormone balance was barely within the normal range.
 

SigmatheZeta

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Generally, I am rooted in both ancient Epicurean and ancient Pyrrhonist sentiments, although I am somewhat sympathetic toward the intentions behind ancient Cynicism.
I am not trying to put blame on you, but I want to stab somebody. You just happen to be there. Sorry.
FWIW, you have my sympathy. It's a heartbreaking event for anyone to go through, regardless of the person's identity. My spouse went through a lot of the same thing about a decade ago when one of his close friends committed suicide. The same "could I have done something?", the same anger, the same sorrow. Well, maybe not exactly the same, but close enough to understand what you're going through.
Thank you. She just got released from the clinic feeling better.
 

Emily Lake

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Furthermore, I think that purity ethics, among women, are profoundly dysfunctional. It results in a supply bottleneck. It should come as no surprise that men are rapey bastards in the same cultures where women are up on their moral high horses regarding dysfunctional purity ethics. It indicates a failure to understand basic economics.
First, what do you mean by "purity ethics"? The term has come up a few times, and I don't know what it's supposed to imply.

Second... I'm a bit put off by referring to interpersonal intimacy as "economics". It ends up sounding like you're blaming women for the existence of rapist because some women don't feel obligated to put out? I sincerely hope that's not what you're trying to say, because I would have to severely disagree with that.
 

TomC

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@TomC You are a hardliner on the belief that universal segregation is a permanent solution.

The fact that I disagree with you is not evidence that I am a villain. It is more likely to me that you are simply wrong.
I said no such things.
Never.

Because I don't believe any of them, and I have a problem with posting things I believe are inaccurate.

I have deep inhibitions against saying anything I believe is inaccurate.

No you don't, in my experience. This post is evidence.
Tom
 

Emily Lake

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But labels are important! Like Shakespeare says, "You call a rose something else... it ain't gonna smell like it does now."
Huh. I'm not entirely sure what you think you're supporting with that quote. But it's absolutely true that a rose (female human) by any other name (man) still smells like a rose (is a female). Changing the label of a thing doesn't actually change the thing. Calling a male human a woman doesn't actually make that male person transform into a female person. Calling a person a wizard doesn't grant them mystical powers to override the laws of physics. You could call me a chicken rump for all I care, I'm pretty sure I'm not going to sprout feathers.
 

Emily Lake

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This seems quite contrary to reality because Trans-men and Trans-women couldn't actually exist if there wasn't an answer to "What's the difference between men and women?" The trouble becomes, some people want the answer to that question to have easily identifiable traits, when the truth is much harder to explain physiologically and behaviorally. It is a bit like quantum tunneling. The people wanting to be uber-labelers will say it isn't possible, despite the observations showing very definitively that it does. Just because we can't understand wholly doesn't negate it's reality.

We know there are trans-genders. So this desire to define them out of existence is stupid. Just because a question is hard to answer, doesn't mean it doesn't have an answer that satisfies the constraints.
First off, stop using disorders of sexual development as an argument for transgender people. They are not the same, they are not interchangeable. Let's take a brief side trip into Body Integrity Identity Disorder (BIID), where people identify as being disabled, frequently as being paraplegic or quadriplegic. Do you think it would be politically and logically appropriate to make the argument that "Some people are born without legs, therefore someone who identifies as paraplegic, despite having completely normal and functional legs, should be recognized and treated as if they were actually legless"? I think that would be an idiotic argument, as well as being rather insulting to people with actual physical disabilities. So please, for the love of all things noble and good, stop using DSDs as some "gotcha" in discussions about transgender people. They are not the same things.

Secondly, no, it's NOT that hard to define male and female. They're actually pretty fucking clear definitions, definitions which hold across every single mammalian species on the planet, as well as the vast majority of vertebrates! It is a definition based on the very really reality of reproductive biology. Males are those creatures whose systems are organized around the production of small motile gametes, regardless of whether they actually produce any gametes at all. Females are those creatures whose systems are organized around the production of large sessile gametes, regardless of whether they actually produce any gametes at all. Insisting that sex is a spectrum or really super complicated is the gender ideology version of Intelligent Design. It's dumb, it's anti-science, and it's just plain wrong. Please stop spreading misinformation.
 

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[quote removed for consistency]
You don't know what or how my transition is shaped. I have not told you because you have no right to know, and you have not asked.

You could ask the actual transgender people here whether what I am is a mockery of them? They know. I've discussed it with them.

Further, maybe you should discuss with allllllllllll the other gay folks I know, have known, continue to know since dating my husband, and divorcing my ex-wife, whether they think I'm 'gay'.

You have also assumed a lot of my sexual history.

I've been raped a few times by people with penises.

All those times the people doing it were "men". I have slept with... Well, it would take me a long time to get really comprehensive with every person with a penis I've had sex with. I've only shared a bed with two women, one of which had a penis and the other with which no sex happened. I've had sex with one person with a vagina in all my life, and he is my husband.

Perhaps you mistake "every person with a vagina I've ever been attracted to came out as a man" with something else? Is it that hard to just assume you don't actually know anything about me?

The fact is, you have defined me out of existence yet here I stand. My statement as to my identity is that it would be nice if you treated me as you would treat, say, Gandalf (or, well, perhaps Radaghast) if they were inexplicably standing before you. Even if you don't believe that thing could exist for such a treatment.

I'm not going to report you here for telling me, wholely embarrassingly inaccurately, what I am as opposed to what the contents of my words are.

Now, there was a question about prison pals...
 
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Emily Lake

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https://www.biologyonline.com/dictionary/life
Many things have definitions that don't work at the edges. The terms were created without regard for those edges, or even awareness in some cases. Lets consider another: What is life?

Bacteria--certainly.

Viruses--this can be argued either way.

Prions--I have never seen them seriously considered life, yet they are an infectious agent.

Computer viruses--again, this can be argued either way.

And, what is a unique life?

At fertilization? It can split into two or more identical twins after that point. Two (or theoretically more, but I've never heard of a case) fertilized eggs can also combine to form a chimera.

Viruses are not alive. They're essentially self-replicating machines.
Prion are not alive. They are protein strands. They're more akin to a chemical catalyst than to anything alive.
Computer viruses are not alive. I don't even know why you would think it could be argued that they are.

It's really strange that you link to a clear definition of life, which refutes your assertions with respect to viruses and computer viruses. I wonder if maybe you didn't read your own link?
 

Emily Lake

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Tell me Emily, would you share a prison cell with an assertive but nonviolent person slight of frame with no balls, perhaps guilty of some technological crime, that would do their best to never actually look at your body even if they were forced to share a space with you, excepting odd requests such as "look at this mole"? Would you, throwing up your hands saying "alas what else can we do," throw this smallish nonviolent person with no balls in prison with a bunch of large people with balls and violent histories which include rape, and violent current tense activities that also involve rape?

With no balls? Sure. I generally say "no penis", but a penis and no balls would probably be fine.
Now, let's imagine this person identifies as a "man". Or at the very least does not identify as a woman at all.

Can you hold by this principle still? Does how they identity change how you interact socially with this person?

Edit: I fully admit I have a destination with this line. That destination is, hopefully, you understanding my position in the way I understand it. You can do with it what you want after that. I am going to be uncharacteristically kind, even, within this framework.
How I interact socially with the person I share a prison cell with? Odd line of questioning, but let's roll with it.

If that person wants to be referred to by male pronouns, I don't care, I will do what I can so long as they're decent. If that person originally had a penis and testicles, and has since had their testicles removed, it's accurate to refer to them with the word that means human male. On the other hand, if that person never had testicles but instead had a vagina and uterus, then it's polite fiction. It really doesn't matter.

Beyond that... I don't know what you're looking for by "interact with socially". I don't socially make a distinction between males and females when I choose to interact with them. As a female, I am significantly more wary of unknown males than of unknown females if I am in a position of increased vulnerability. In that situation, however, I don't know what a person identifies as, nor if they have balls. I can only make an assessment based on how they appear.

But this started as a question about PRISON, where the vast majority of prisoners don't get choices about where they are placed. If a person has no balls and wants to be in with the females, and doesn't represent an undue risk to those female humans, I don't care. If that person has a penis and testicles, I don't think they should be ENTITLED to being placed with female humans, regardless of how they identify. I am, however, content to allow case-by-case exceptions provided there's compelling reason.
 

Emily Lake

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Same here. A person wearing a dress, beardless chin, and feminine comportment is a woman. Might be 6'3", with linebacker shoulders and bulging biceps and a tight waist, but if all you need to do is use female pronouns what's hard about that? I agree, there's a handful of situations where sex matters, like public restrooms and prisons. But those are the exception, not the norm.
Hell, if they have a full on lumberjack beard and walk like a gorilla, but they want to be called a woman in all but those situations where sex matters, I'm perfectly fine with that. Anybody who wants to wear a dress should feel free to do so.
 

Emily Lake

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I am neurodivergent, myself. I have deep inhibitions against saying anything I believe is inaccurate. However, words can have multiple definitions. For example, "woman" can be a foreshortening of "trans-woman," or it can be a foreshortening of "cis-woman." Either way, "woman" is an accurate term.
I assume that the foreshortening is context dependent? I would guess that if someone were talking about endometriosis and used the term "woman", there wouldn't be any confusion about whether or not transwomen were included. Similarly, I would suspect that you don't feel compelled to refer to "ciswomen and transmen" in that context, and could roll with the contextually appropriate "women" as the common term for a human female?
 

Emily Lake

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I am a chimera.
Do you genuinely have chimerism? That's kind of awesome... well, okay it's awesome for me to meet a genetic chimera, not necessarily awesome for you, since it makes all sorts of things complicated.
Not likely. However, the fact that I am transgender plus the fact that my mother's side of the family has giganticomastia plus the fact that polymorphisms in the gene that codes an important estrogen receptor makes it likely that I am literally a mutant. When I got my blood tested prior to starting HRT, my hormone balance was barely within the normal range.
(y)Euphemistically a chimera, reference to the mythical critter. I only asked because I was recently having a discussion about chimerism with an evolutionary biologist, so I thought it would be a really interesting coinkidink to meet one!

There are all kinds of weird bits and bobs in genetics. I think, to some degree, all of us are mutants... but for most of us the mutations aren't deleterious. For example, I literally have no toenails on my baby toes. I just have a kind of skin fold, but they've never grown a nail of any sort. It runs in my family. Doesn't cause any problems, aside from an aversion to pedicures and open-toed shoes.
 

Emily Lake

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I am not trying to put blame on you, but I want to stab somebody. You just happen to be there. Sorry.
FWIW, you have my sympathy. It's a heartbreaking event for anyone to go through, regardless of the person's identity. My spouse went through a lot of the same thing about a decade ago when one of his close friends committed suicide. The same "could I have done something?", the same anger, the same sorrow. Well, maybe not exactly the same, but close enough to understand what you're going through.
Thank you. She just got released from the clinic feeling better.
Good, I hope she gets the support she needs to whether the storm.
 

Trausti

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You aren't asking anything, you are demanding that male and female labels remain rigid, when in reality, they aren't as rigid or as convenient as we'd prefer.
Male and female are pretty concrete concepts.

It’s curious that humans had no difficulty distinguishing men and women up to our present time. Now there are folks who display a cognitive deficit in simple pattern recognition. Is it something in the water? The soy?
 
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