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Locked: What is Gender?

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Kuksenkov said:
As a bisexual individual, I'm supposed to be part of this LFBTQJXBEKUV+ "community", but I personally believe that the entire gender talk is ridiculous.

I will never understand "genderfluid" individuals who fluctuate between genders depending on how they are feeling. Nor will I ever understand those who utilize "they/them/their" pronouns when referring to themselves. These kind of people are struggling to love themselves and the bodies they were born with, and as a result all these bullshit of "I feel like a man today, but maybe in 10 minutes from now I'll be a woman. Tomorrow I am multiple genders at once, and next month I'll identify as a hydra from ancient mythology because I CAN and I FEEL THAY WAY, so you should address and acknowledge me as a monster from ancient mythology if I feel like one".

No, there is three options: Man/Woman/Other (please specify).

Okay YOU I feel like I relate to, although I do think I can maybe help a bit with the particular confusion you're having around what "non-binary" identities are about. I've observed that those tend to be temporary identities that some people embrace as functionally a kind of stepping stone until they are ready to fully dissociate from their bodies and identify themselves completely with the opposite sex. Think of the stages this way:

Male --> Non-Binary --> Trans Woman

OR

Female --> Non-Binary --> Trans Man

People don't usually stick with quirky "non-binary" identities for very long, in my observation.

But I relate to feeling a bit distant from the LGBTQIARESTOFTHEALPHABET2++ community that I'm supposed to belong to as a lesbian, which I prefer to shorthand as "the queer community" for aesthetic reasons because it's an accepted term by that community which captures I think the real essence of it also, as well as the reason why I struggle to find a place therein: membership in the scene today is much more defined by whether subscribes ideologically to queer theory than it is by sexual orientation or any other factor. Those who may not agree with all the aspects of queer theory can be excommunicated.

I find it's sometimes neat to talk to older gay, bi, and lesbian people who precede the popularization of queer theory in the 1990s, as they'll sometimes relay views of how sexual orientation works that bear little resemblance to the typical contentions that you hear in the scene now. One such older belief is that everyone is bisexual in reality and that embracing either strict heterosexuality, lesbianism, or strict male homosexuality is a response to pressure or to lived experiences. When I look at studies like this one wherein 60% of women who call themselves "heterosexual" also say that they're attracted to other women, I get the feeling that maybe this older view is more accurate...at least closer to the truth...than the view that says only the 7% who actually say that they're bi or lesbian in fact are. Similarly, people over 60 who identify as trans often have a different view of how that works too.

Last edited by Jaicee - on 04 June 2019

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vivster said:

Now this is a thread. I wanted to make one like this for quite a while.

As you have pointed out already there isn't a single thing attributed to each gender that is unique to a certain sex. It's a meaningless categorization and it has long outlived its welcome. I reject the notion of transgender because you cannot transition between something that doesn't exist. People build their stupidly rigidly defined categorizations and then whine about not fitting in them. Well, here's the truth, not fitting in is normal and it's the responsibility of the person to deal with it. I don't care if you want to change your sexuality or your appearance, but don't force me to put any importance on your own conceived arbitrary categorization.

Gender has become something that's akin to a religion, where we have to respect whatever crazy thing people who have subscribed to said religion believe. I treat any person with respect if that respect is reciprocal. I don't care about your appearance or your preferences but when you start forcing me to behave in some way that's uncalled for I'm gonna get pissed and I'm already pretty pissed about this new religion. You're not a woman or a man or gender fluid. You're a genderless blob to me. You're defined by what you do.

The world needs to become genderless and the sooner that happens the better. But looking at the "progress" we made with other religions I'm not holding my breath.

Caitlyn Jenner is not a hero. Jesus is not a hero. They're both humans.

I'm highlighting the bolded item because I think that represents a unique view that no one else here has articulated yet. I mean you and are in agreement on the rest.

But that (the bolded part) is interesting! So basically you're a subscriber to the Judith Butler type of view that says both gender AND BIOLOGICAL SEX are social constructs if I'm gathering your position correctly?



Cobretti2 said:
What about the people that are born with a penis and ovaries, where do they fit in?

There is obviously legitimacy to the notion of a third sex in the sense that, as you point out, intersex people exist and deserve our respect and consideration. I think there should be wiggle room with respect to such people when it comes to public policy. Taking the restroom policy issue we've been discussing, for instance, I'm good with having sex-neutral third options for the sake of intersex people who may not necessarily feel comfortable in either male or female restrooms. I think that's fine!

Being intersex is a biological reality for about 1% of the population. It's NOT an idea like being transgender.



Just as a broad aside, some people here have argued that women are in an equal amount of sexual danger from other women in public restrooms as they would be from men because lesbians exist. This argument is self-evidently nonsense. All one needs do is compare the prevalence of sexual violence in exclusively male spaces like male-only boarding schools, prisons, etc. to that in their exclusively female parallels to discover as much. Lesbianism finds more outlets and becomes more common in exclusively female environments, yet this doesn't produce either heightened or comparable levels of sexual violence compared to either co-ed or male-only parallel environments. Female-only environments are the safest kinds there are and that's a fact. That can begin to change, however, if and to the extent that men are allowed in.



Jaicee said:
vivster said:

Now this is a thread. I wanted to make one like this for quite a while.

As you have pointed out already there isn't a single thing attributed to each gender that is unique to a certain sex. It's a meaningless categorization and it has long outlived its welcome. I reject the notion of transgender because you cannot transition between something that doesn't exist. People build their stupidly rigidly defined categorizations and then whine about not fitting in them. Well, here's the truth, not fitting in is normal and it's the responsibility of the person to deal with it. I don't care if you want to change your sexuality or your appearance, but don't force me to put any importance on your own conceived arbitrary categorization.

Gender has become something that's akin to a religion, where we have to respect whatever crazy thing people who have subscribed to said religion believe. I treat any person with respect if that respect is reciprocal. I don't care about your appearance or your preferences but when you start forcing me to behave in some way that's uncalled for I'm gonna get pissed and I'm already pretty pissed about this new religion. You're not a woman or a man or gender fluid. You're a genderless blob to me. You're defined by what you do.

The world needs to become genderless and the sooner that happens the better. But looking at the "progress" we made with other religions I'm not holding my breath.

Caitlyn Jenner is not a hero. Jesus is not a hero. They're both humans.

I'm highlighting the bolded item because I think that represents a unique view that no one else here has articulated yet. I mean you and are in agreement on the rest.

But that (the bolded part) is interesting! So basically you're a subscriber to the Judith Butler type of view that says both gender AND BIOLOGICAL SEX are social constructs if I'm gathering your position correctly?

I use the current interpretation that divorces gender from biological sex. Biological differences exist and should be respected, but they don't define you.

A woman is nothing more than a human that has certain biological characteristics and certain needs. Those needs are different from other humans, but they are in no way more or less important. The thing here is that humans are extremely diverse. There is no point in arbitrarily drawing a line between two groups if the biological differences within 1 group are as big as the differences between the groups. There are women that look and act like men and vice versa, so why even divide the groups then?

There are special needs people who have to regularly go to special physicians to get themselves checked for their own biological issues. Be it a woman going to a gynecologist or a wheelchair bound person going to the orthopedist. I don't think we'll have to assign a gender to differently abled people just because they're physically different, so why would we do that to biological sexes?

Genders are a social construct, created from the human need to categorize everything. From the earliest societies women were labeled the weaker gender, partly because of necessity and partly because male power fantasies. But that isn't really a natural state or a default state seeing how there have been matriarchal societies since the beginning of time. Biological sexes looked differently so of course they have to be separated. Animals and humans are wired to form groups and see members outside our group with skepticism. These things can be overcome however. Humans are intelligent enough to see past difference. We did it with races and we can do it with gender as well.

If we look at infants we can see universal acceptance and respect of all genders and races, which means they're only later indoctrinated. This indoctrination is not malicious in most cases but it's just very stupid and causes more problems than it's trying to fix. It all starts with gendered clothing, colors and even toys. One of the most egregious things are gendered bathrooms. Children are taught to keep to their own gender. Having homogeneous gendered groups in childhood and especially youth creates a very toxic circlejerk within these groups who will then define the other group and creating a false picture, further dividing them. At the end of adolescence all the damage is done.

To change people's perception of gender we need to start in the early childhood. The current generation is already lost but change can come in the future. At some point people have to stop caring about genders. Sadly we're currently going in the opposite direction. Ironically it's fueled by people who fight for gender equality. We're currently regressing in our acceptance of genders and races because people put emphasis on things that should not be emphasized.

I think I made my point here. Now I'm trying to think of a way to fix the issue with gendered changing rooms.



If you demand respect or gratitude for your volunteer work, you're doing volunteering wrong.

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I think that this notion that people can be whatever they want and whatever they feel like at any given day is dangerous notion.

For us humans to be able to coexist as a society we need to have boundaries, rules and yes, definitions and labels. And yes, I know this seem to contradict the notion of "freedom" but to live as a society we can never be entirely "free", for example: We are not free to go around killing whatever we want, we are not free to go around slapping people on the streets, we are not free to enter whatever house (or location) we want, we are not free to go around ignoring the traffic lights, etc etc etc

What I'm getting at here is that there are physical and legal consequences linked to the notions of "male" and "female" person. And many of the laws currently in place stem from the fact that male and female bodies are built differently. Just some examples: 1) A man and a woman get into a fight and usually the male is the one who goes to jail. But if said man starts saying that he is really a woman then things change. 2) A man commits a crime and is gonna be sent to a male-prison, but if all of a sudden he says that he is really a woman then the jury is gonna have to consider sending him to a female-prison. 3) When a couple get divorced usually the man is forced to pay alimony to the woman but again, things are gonna change if all of a sudden the guy says that he is really a woman.

Then we have sports. Who can compete with who? you cannot have a biological male person boxing, wrestling, running, weight lifting, etc with a biological female.

And these are just a few examples of the top of my head. I'm sure there will be MANY instances where some ill-intentioned people are going to find ways to bend the laws to get away with things.

So, to wrap things up, I have no problem with people calling themselves whatever they want to call themselves and using whatever pronouns they want to use on themselves as long as it doesnt affect me. But when your freedom start conflicting with my own freedom, then we need to sit down and define our boundaries. And no, I don't think people going around saying: Ok, yesterday I was "X", today I feel "Y" and tomorrow I may or may not feel "A" is ever going to work legally speaking.

So yes, as much as I hate governments intervening in our lives, I think they are going to have to sit down and properly define what we really are biologically, physically, psychologically and legally speaking.



LuccaCardoso1 said:
o_O.Q said:

"These four should be sufficient. All the others are people who struggle to find  their identity, so they try to push themselves in categories. I don't think this is very useful (especially since a lot of them basically mean the same thing), and I also don't think it's a very healthy thing for these people to do."

so if someone wants to be a unicorn, for example, the other people around them should be expected to play along with that?

This is such a terrible argument that anti-LGBT+ groups keep on using to try to discredit people who struggle with understanding their own gender. Unicorns are mythical beings. Being transgender is completely different from being from a different species, c'mon. This is basic stuff. No one is trying to say that they're not human. This is so ridiculous. I know I can't expect any common sense from you, o_O.Q, but hopefully someone not as willfully ignorant and narrow-minded will read this and change their arguments.

Kuksenkov said:
As a bisexual individual, I'm supposed to be part of this LFBTQJXBEKUV+ "community", but I personally believe that the entire gender talk is ridiculous.

I will never understand "genderfluid" individuals who fluctuate between genders depending on how they are feeling. Nor will I ever understand those who utilize "they/them/their" pronouns when referring to themselves. These kind of people are struggling to love themselves and the bodies they were born with, and as a result all these bullshit of "I feel like a man today, but maybe in 10 minutes from now I'll be a woman. Tomorrow I am multiple genders at once, and next month I'll identify as a hydra from ancient mythology because I CAN and I FEEL THAY WAY, so you should address and acknowledge me as a monster from ancient mythology if I feel like one".

No, there is three options: Man/Woman/Other (please specify).

You don't need to use "LGBTQJXBEKUV+" to refer to the LGBT+ community. By doing that, you're just giving more ammo for bigots to attack us. Everyone is happy with just LGBT+ or LGBTQ, whichever you find more comfortable.

I'm not completely in par with the genderfluid community, so I can't tell you exactly how that works, but I say we listen before we invalidate them. But what I know is why some people prefer to use "they/them/their" pronouns. Some people don't feel totally male or female, and therefore they prefer to be called by a gender-neutral pronoun. I don't see why that should be such a big deal if it makes no difference for us but makes someone happier.

No one is saying that you can identify as non-human. That's such a ridiculous jump. Stop giving ammo for anti-LGBT+ groups to discredit a whole community because of your lack of knowledge of a group of people.

Ps.: Other (please specify) is an open-ended option. There are clearly more than three options if they ask you to specify. If there were only three options, they would probably just write the third option there.

kirby007 said:
Thank god *what gender is god?* i can now see who quoted me xD

Ahahahahahahahaha @jrpgfam you realise im jerking around right

MrWayne said:

Why are you answering with questions?

Because that's o_O.Q for you. That's what they do when they don't have arguments, they answer with random questions to try and change the subject.

"Being transgender is completely different from being from a different species, c'mon."

i thought gender was a social construct unrelated to biology?

how can you at one point say that gender is a social construct then when the absurdity of this claim is pointed out fall back on biology?

if there is nothing rooted in material reality that determines gender then why can't someone choose to identify as a unicorn?

you see this is why i have to ask questions because clearly you either do not believe in what you are saying or you are deeply confused

No one is saying that you can identify as non-human."

again a biological argument from someone who says biology shouldn't determine gender otherwise

"That's what they do when they don't have arguments, they answer with random questions to try and change the subject."

i ask questions in the hope that i can reach some type of clarity on how so many people can hold contradictory beliefs in their head so easily and willfully



o_O.Q said:

"Being transgender is completely different from being from a different species, c'mon."

i thought gender was a social construct unrelated to biology?

i ask questions in the hope that i can reach some type of clarity on how so many people can hold contradictory beliefs in their head so easily and willfully

Do you do this on purpose or is it just natural? 

I'll answer for you though so long as you can understand some math.

Gender is a function under a specific, given set (Human).  Species is a completely different set.  This should never, ever, ever, need to be pointed out to you again.



Massimus - "Trump already has democrat support."

SpokenTruth said:
o_O.Q said:

"Being transgender is completely different from being from a different species, c'mon."

i thought gender was a social construct unrelated to biology?

i ask questions in the hope that i can reach some type of clarity on how so many people can hold contradictory beliefs in their head so easily and willfully

Do you do this on purpose or is it just natural? 

I'll answer for you though so long as you can understand some math.

Gender is a function under a specific, given set (Human).  Species is a completely different set.  This should never, ever, ever, need to be pointed out to you again.

" This should never, ever, ever, need to be pointed out to you again."

dishonestly evading straight answers on this topic doesn't make it logically consistent even though you may think so

"Gender is a function under a specific, given set (Human)."

now what I would say is that its simply a function of sex/biology but you have decided to throw that away, so what is gender derived from in your view?

I have so far heard that its simply clothing, is that your belief? that if I wanted to become a man then all i'd need to do is change up the clothing I wear?

why could I then not decide to invent some new clothing styles to represent a new gender I have created?

why couldn't I paste a horn to my head and call myself a unicorn?



o_O.Q said:

now what I would say is that its simply a function of sex/biology but you have decided to throw that away, so what is gender derived from in your view?

I have so far heard that its simply clothing, is that your belief? that if I wanted to become a man then all i'd need to do is change up the clothing I wear?

why could I then not decide to invent some new clothing styles to represent a new gender I have created?

why couldn't I paste a horn to my head and call myself a unicorn?

No one has said that gender is derived from clothing.  What was said was the opposite.  That people who are transgender men will tend to dress like stereotypical men, and similarly people who are transgender women will tend to dress like stereotypical women.  

I don't think you have yet to answer this question:

How do you define men/women?  

If you go by chromosomes: you run into 2 difficulties:

The first difficulty is that a small number of people don't know what they are.  Some people are born with XX chromosomes, and yet they are born with a penis.  

The second difficulty is that not everyone has XY or XX.  


If you go by whether they have a "male" parts/ "female" parts, you run into another difficulty:

There are some people born with both sets of parts.  Where do they go?

However you biologically define gender, you at minimum need to accept that scientifically there are at least 3 genders.  That's a fact you keep ignoring or dismissing.


You keep trying to bring up the species argument, but how do you think society would care?  Suppose that someone out there really wanted to be a unicorn, what does it matter?  How do you think that would affect society?  

What I mean by how is the following, this is how transgenderism affects society:

-people have to respect what other people are called (holy cow, just like it is right now!)

-people have to respect what gender someone wants to be (I know, it's totally different from what we have right now where we only respect what gender someone is.)

And that's pretty much it.  There's no massive societal shift, there's nothing.  

If someone wanted to be called a unicorn and yet they still act like a regular person.  I don't consider that an issue. It doesn't change anything. 

If someone wanted to be called a unicorn and act like they are a unicorn, that's only an issue because that person is going to have a lot of issues with life.  As long as they are being respectful of other people, I really don't care.