A womb of her own.

A shout out to all the menstruaters and uterus havers and people who use sanitary products on account of having periods and a wave to all the pregnant people who will go on to be the birthing parents and a final salute to the chest feeders who are feeding their babies human milk. We love you all, equally. 100% of people who experience ovarian cancer have ovaries so people with ovaries should take care. If you are uterus haver that no longer ovulates you may be about to become a menopausal person and that may affect your health.

All of these words were used in advertising campaigns this weekend in a relentless attack on the one feature all these people have in common – womanhood. The type of hood that only women experience.

In an attempt to make sure everybody feels included, women are excluded from our own existence. Consigned to the fringes as ‘other’ in the only thing we previously owned, unequivocally – femaleness. And those of us who complain are cast as meanies, bigots, has-beens, the ones left behind as we walk into the brave new world of gender neutrality.

Gender neutrality is a woke term used to eradicate women as a sex class and decimate our single sex spaces, services and short lists. Frequently misinterpreted as a progressive concept, replacing sex with gender and turning single sex spaces into a ‘free for all’ makes women complicit in their oppression but powerless to name it.

Please believe me when I say I know this is uncomfortable territory for most, especially arty types. A line has been drawn in the sand on this issue in the arts and if you’re not on the non-binary side, you can kiss a comfortable career goodbye. I reject outright the idea that arty types are less in touch with the concept of womanhood than more provincial types. I think many just want to pay the bills and hang on to their publisher.

But how did we get here? To a point where the very word ‘woman’ might cause offensive and is best left unsaid? To a time, in history, when to know that women exist as a specific sex class is to be perceived as backword and lacking a basic understanding of human biology? Yet, dogs can easily tell the difference between the sexes, so, in order to not be perceived as ignorant, we must act as if we are stupider than dogs.

And people do. Grown ass adults who have had sex, and have seen naked bodies of both sexes, act like there is an ambiguity to a self evident truth. Left leaning beardy type men wax lyrical about the unknowable, enigmatic, ever evolving nature of the word ‘woman’ as if they had all entered the world through the force of their own egos, as opposed to through the vagina of their own long suffering mothers. Unless, the mother had a C-section because we don’t want to not include mothers who have had C-sections in our analogy of motherhood.

Including everybody, in everything, all the time, is soul destroying and harmful when you want to do something exclusionary like create a woman only space. Ultimately, it’s impossible to create such spaces when tossers, who think they are liberated because they do their own dishes twice a week, pretend they don’t know it’s a woman who does them the rest of the time and the dish washing woman pretends she doesn’t know either.

The staff at Qatar airport know the differences between men and women are innately biological and that’s why they only strip searched women. When Poland voted to make access to abortion even harder, they knew they were disempowering a sex class. When a group of twelve Israeli men gang raped a British tourist in Cyprus, they all knew the victim was female.

Just like when a protagonist is on trial for a sex act gone wrong, or someone is arrested for having sex with a post-box, we all know the suspect is a bloke.

It’s not a moral flaw or an absence of compassionate thinking that leads a human being to know the difference between the sexes, it’s six million years of evolution. It’s, literally, the only way we have continued to survive.

And it’s no coincidence that the people hunted down and shamed for their stand on gender identity are almost exclusively those who have a pro-women stand, yet pro-women groups are famously non-violent in both philosophy and outlook. It is difficult to find an individual that poses less of a physical threat to another than a radical feminist. Unlike, say a right wing thug jacked up on steroids, looking to lay his manly fists into any gender non – conformists he stumbles across. There have been many attempts to link the actions of such rough and tumble types to the words of Germaine Greer types, but, to date, there has not been a single example of a dangerous bastard citing Andrea Dworkin as his heroine.

And, ladies, this is the choice they have left you with. Your principals or your pay check. And there ain’t no landlord trading shelter for perception.

Far from the mad crowd.

Shout out to those of you who are still vaguely sane. Even if this is your sole contribution to the current global crisis, its importance can’t be overstated. Our ability to be productive human beings is directly related to how nuts we are. No apologies to those who are offended by the ol’ school references. The world is on fire and political correctness isn’t gonna safe you from crazy.

In fact, political correctness in overdrive is part of the problem. The left have spent at least a decade alienating their core base, by pandering to the insatiable demands of social justice warriors (themselves intrinsically linked to corporate interests) and patronising and vilifying anyone who pointed out the paradox. Denying the science of sex and the pivotal role class plays in politics, for the short term gains of woke culture. Bastardising language in the hope of staying relevant.

Meanwhile, the right have stood back and watched, biding their chance to be great again. In the last decade they have cemented their hold in Western democracies, culminating in Britain voting to isolate itself from Europe and America voting to isolate itself from everywhere. And just when we thought things couldn’t get worse, a pandemic struck and the left busied itself calling everyone that wasn’t examining white privilege racist and anyone reading JK Rowling bigoted. And the right reached out with arms wide open and welcomed the disenfranchised and didn’t call them complicit in the white man’s game.

And what started out as a bit of larping, live action role play, how teenage boys and grown men with very little chances of live sex spend their time, turned into Q Anon. And what started out as an American fantasy turned into a global nightmare as the biggest and flashest conspiracy (leave that to the Yanks) consumed all the smaller conspiracies into one never-ending virtual goldfish bowl. Ironically, if you understand the father conspiracy, the tank cracked, due to over population, and now the crazies have spilled into the streets demanding an end to viruses and the public execution of every high profile celeb you’ve fancied in the past forty years.

Given that these demands can never be met, it’s tempting to laugh at the lunatics proposing them, except our mirth misses the point of what’s happening. There is the foot soldiers – digital and actual size 13s – and there is the generals. Those on the ground think they are fighting for the freedom of all. Those pulling the strings have their eye on the prize – a fascist state.

I knew fascism had lost all meaning the first time I was called one so it came as no surprise to me when people perceived being asked to wear a face mask as fascist because fascism has been robbed of its history and truth and reduced to an inane insult we levy at all we politically oppose.

Meanwhile, actual fascists have hoovered up the discontented and given them political purpose and now we have anarchists on the street, desperate for things to get better, standing shoulder to shoulder with far right politicians and agitators, desperate for things to get worse.

And maybe all you can manage to do is binge watch cop shows from the eighties and shove the odd tin of tomatoes in a food bank and you wonder, as Rome burns, is that enough? I am here to promise you it is. If you manage to see out the year without dying alone or being radicalised then you are a hero in the eyes of all the relatives you’ll share your Zoom Christmas dinner with.

The Shaming of the Shrew

Yesterday afternoon, absentmindedly, I tripped and fell into the comments section of a Edinburgh based social media group.  I’m okay, still a little shaky and following my doctor’s advice – to stay the fuck away from Community facebook pages.  You may think it’s extreme to call an emergency doctor because you’ve suffered a bruised ego, but that’s how entitled I am.

My website calls me Triona, but lately I’ve been called Karen several times.

I thought about putting up a copy of my birth cert, blanking out bits and showing enough for people to see I’m not Karen, and then I realised they didn’t mean it literally.

Like when a woman is called a whore or a cunt or a bitch, or in more recent times, a terf.  These words aren’t meant to suggest that a woman referred to in these terms is an actual prostitute, vagina, dog or feminist.  They are simply shorthand for misogynists who want to express the universal language of woman hating, in easily understood terms.

And every generation has their own words, but the millennia old tradition of putting women in their place continues.

It’s too late for me to avoid the Karen label.  It is as inevitable as the terf label that proceeded it.  Too mouthy.  See?  In my defence, I was born this way and despite the many successive attempts of the system and violent men to shut me up, I continue to have opinions and to voice them.  But it’s not too late for you. Here are my top tips to avoid being labelled Karen.

(1) Don’t ever express an opinion in a public setting, be it real or virtual.

(2) Whenever possible, avoiding leaving the house, as this will minimise your chances of being overheard, unwittingly, saying something no longer sayable.

(3) In the privacy of your home, stick to talking about stuff you know and avoid all controversial subjects. Most subjects are now controversial so try to keep conversation in the present tense around action words.   For example, you might say, ‘I am doing the laundry.  Do people mind gathering their stinking socks and stained undergarments and leaving them in the washing basket?’

(4) Avoid Mumsnet like it was a recently revived wing of the I.R.A.  Beneath those recipes for fruit scones and advice links to government benefits, there lurks an underbelly of resistance to the whole scale takeover of Womanhood.  Nothing gets you called Karen quicker than resisting the whole scale takeover of Womanhood.

(5) As some of you will have jobs that necessitate leaving the house and compel you to converse about controversial subjects (almost everything) try to be the listener more than the talker.  When you speak, acknowledge your privilege, ignorance and all round gratitude that you’ve been given a voice and then use it to amplify the experiences of people that aren’t you.  Never, ever, centre yourself in any discussion, even with your shrink.

(6) If, as part of your job, you are expected to research your discipline, be aware research has evolved significantly.  Where once it was a pre-requisite to have a well read, intelligent view of a subject, now less is more.  Knowledge will be a handicap and sharing it a surefire, short route to a new nickname.

(7) Woke words evole quicker than conspiracies about Corona, so best to always follow another’s lead.  Underpinning any work focused, compulsory communication should be the clear understanding that words kill, literally, and wokeness kills the meaning of all words, figuratively.

(8) Are you confused yet?  If not, I don’t think I can help you.  Confusion is good, use it to keep you off balance and fearful.  The more afraid you are, the more you will self censor and not add to the workload of the oppressed, who have to take time away from fighting big oppressors – the state, the police, the government, their parents – to explain to you the devastating consequences your micro aggressive behaviour – hogging the office heater- has on the life expectancy of the indigenous tribes of New Guinea.

To summarise, erase from your mind any pre-conceptions of your powerlessness based on your own life experiences.  You may never have been able to get the fucker to pay child support, but are so omnipotent that if you retweet a J.K. Rowling comment, a gender non conforming child loses their wings and the whole world becomes a shade darker.

 

 

 

Woke and Dagger

Why did Mhairi Black cross the road? To make derogatory remarks about women on the other side.

Obviously, I’m joking.  Nobody defames anybody on the side of the road, anymore.  Not since the advent of twitter.

It’s been a drag for Mhairi the last twenty four hours as she deals with the fallout of a her monumentally stupid decision to  bring an adult entertainer called flowjob (with a very adult public social media profile) to a primary school gig in order to promote LGBT+ history month, and her even stupider one, to defend the decision.

The woman famed in her maiden speech  for being in touch with, even the voice of, the ordinary person seems to no longer be able to read Jo Public’s mind.  She has fallen victim to a faith based ideology that demands a suspension of critical thinking and a psychological distancing from non believers, in this case, the voting public.

She has  been awokined.   Not for her the rational discourse of ordinary individuals with their mundane concerns, like their kid not being groomed in the schoolyard.  Not for her the hideous banality of the common woman with her ignorant insistence that she exists as part of a sex class.  Not for her the subtle distinction between being a gay role model suitable for children and an adult drag act.  Not for her the nuance of debate because the slogan says #nodebate and not for her to question slogans.

And any day now, she’s going to crash land in the nursing home of political irrelevance, where all the so woke they’re actually broke politicians go to die, and isn’t that a crying shame?

Not as shameful, though, as slandering individuals concerned with safeguarding, as if safe guarding wasn’t the single most important feature of any school activity.  Given that the council involved has since apologised,there can be no doubt that this was an ill considered visit.

The response, however, to tarnish the reputation and question the morality of those who disagree, that was measured and pretty textbook. But the good news is, it’s getting old, as more and more people wake up to the logistical and practical problems of wokeness without end.

I know I’m supposed to prefix or suffix this post with an assurance that I’m not homophobic, right wing or Christian.  I know I’m supposed to reassure you that I’m anti Brexit and pro a multi cultural, diverse society, but I refuse to play these games anymore.  The stakes are too high.

In and of itself, the decision to expose primary school children to a drag queen, with a hardcore public social media profile, was a gross error of judgement that reveals a council, a principal and a politician more concerned with appearing to do the right thing than actually doing it.