Why did Lia Thomas bother changing his name?
According to the gender-studies mavens, it wasn’t strictly necessary. A trans woman doesn’t need a vaginoplasty or breast implants. He doesn’t even need to wear dresses. He doesn’t have to date men, or watch Downton Abbey or merge into traffic without checking his blind spots. Those are all socially constructed ideas of femininity. Trans women don’t have to conform to these sexist, patriarchal norms. Womanhood is a state of mind.
The question, of course, is: what kind of state? The LGBT lobby refuses to answer that question. The official line is that anyone who identifies as a woman is a woman. If Hugh Jackman came out today and said, “Oi, mate, I’m a sheila,” a sheila he’d be. Fair dinkum.
So it’s totally fine that Mr. Thomas isn’t taking estrogen, dates women, has a penis… normal boy things. The name-change was gratuitous. And what’s with the long hair? Ace Ventura could come up with a better disguise.
But have you noticed the total absence of hardcore Lia Thomas supporters? Not a single person is falling for his ruse (except Matt Schlapp, who’d fall for Kim Jong-un if he paid cash). Everyone knows he’s lying. But the left can’t admit it. Because once you’ve established some criteria for debunking a trans woman — penis-having, etc. — you’ve set a precedent.
So, calling out Mr. Thomas would be a disaster for the LGBT lobby. What many commentators have missed, though, is that it would also be a catastrophe for feminists.
Third-wave feminism decided it was sexist to notice any difference between men and women. They said that men and women should be treated equally at home, at work, in politics, in school and even in the military. In fact, the existence of any gender inequality was evidence of sexism. At least 50 percent of senators, scientists and CEOs ought to be women. If not, blame the patriarchy.
For example, might not the gender pay gap be explained by the fact that men work longer hours and pursue more dangerous careers? Is it not relevant that childless, unmarried women actually earn more than childless, unmarried men? Nope! It’s the boy’s club.
To admit that Lia Thomas is a better swimmer because he’s a dude would shatter the transgender myth. It would also mean admitting, not only that men and women are different, but that men actually tend to be better at some things than women.
Look at the “Battle of the Sexes”: the infamous 1998 tennis match between Karsten Braasch and the Williams sisters. Braasch — a heavy-drinking, chain-smoking has-been ranked 203 for men — took on the queens of women’s tennis single-handed. After playing a round of golf and getting sotted at the clubhouse, he showed up to the match and beat Serena and Venus in quick succession.
Our instinct is to say, “Well, Serena and Venus are still really good… for women!” That sounds patronizing, probably because it is. But what else can we do? Well, we could admit that female athletes always perform at a lower level than male athletes.
Likewise, the Marine Corps has lower standards for women’s physical fitness. Why? Because if She-Marines had to perform at the same level as He-Marines, there would be no She-Marines at all. So, why not accept the lower percentage of women? Because the patriarchy. But why not then lower the standards for men? Well, because we still need elite warriors to kill our enemies.
But we’re not allowed to talk about these facts. In fact, you’re really not supposed to notice any difference between men and women at all. The only exception is if it reflects well on women. Hillary Clinton can say that countries with female leaders fared better during Covid because women are more “inclusive” and “empathetic.” But if you were to say that men are therefore more discriminating and rational in their judgment, that would be sexist.
Once feminism declared war on biology, transgenderism naturally followed. A woman can be anything a man can be — even a man. That’s why Ketanji Brown Jackson can’t define the word “woman” at all. She’s not allowed to.
I can hear some feminist out there saying, “Well, Serena and Venus would cream you with their arms tied behind their backs! And I bet you couldn’t take on a single one of those female Marines in a fistfight.” To which I say: you’re probably right!
Hey, there are lots of people in this world who are stronger, tougher, smarter, faster, taller and handsomer than me. You’re not insulting me, and I’m not just being modest. It’s a fact. If there’s such a thing in the world as an Übermensch, it’s not me. That doesn’t somehow make me less valuable as a human being.
That, I think, is what this debate is really about. Much as we like to pat ourselves on the back for being “progressive,” we’re all stuck in the nineteenth century. Deep down, we’re still phrenologists and eugenicists. We still measure a person’s worth by how smart or strong or “fit” they are.
It’s the same with race. Between 2014 and 2018, alt-right trolls triggered mass hysteria on the left by quoting statistics saying that white people have a higher average IQ than black people. And you know what? That may well be true. But who cares? I’m white, and there are millions of black people all over the world who have higher IQs than I do. That doesn’t make them better than me. It just makes them smarter.
Besides, Asians have the highest IQ of any race. That doesn’t make them the master race. You may as well say (American) Indians are superior because they never have to shave. You may as well say (Indian) Indians are superior because they have the highest tolerance for spicy food. These are all good things! But they don’t make anyone better than anyone else.
We’re all supremacists of one kind or another. We all believe that some people are superior to other people due to some inborn trait. It may not be skin color. Maybe it’s intelligence, or strength or attractiveness. If so, maybe you are sexist. Maybe you think women are inferior to men because they are (on average) not as good as men are (on average) at playing tennis or doing Marine stuff. And maybe you are a racist. Maybe you think black people are inferior to white people, and white people are inferior to Asians, because of their (average) scores on some test.
To me, that sounds kind of dumb.
Don’t get me wrong: it’s good to be smart, strong, attractive, etc. (at least it seems like fun.) Those are desirable qualities. Some are born with them, and that’s good luck. We can all cultivate them by reading good books, staying in shape, wearing a tie, etc. I just don’t see why it has to be a contest.
Then again, I’m a Christian. I believe that every human life is equally and infinitely as precious as every other human life, because each and every one of us is made in the image and likeness of God. I guess I’m old-fashioned that way. But at least I know what “woman” means.