Trans Theory Is A War Against Reality
Trans theory starts in the mind, not in the body, and by virtue of its essential subjectivity, is unfalsifiable.
Transgenderism has ignited significant media coverage and significant pushback from adherents of traditional morality. The bathroom laws that dominated the news from Texas to North Carolina have elicited a field of responses and spawned a number of skirmishes in the culture war, but the issue of predators and safety illuminated the weakness of transgender theory and the implications of its unavoidable subjectivity.
Transgenderism, at its absolute core, starts in the mind. It is the claim that an immaterial aspect of an individual is a different sex than the biological sex that he is born with; that such individuals are “misgendered” at birth, or otherwise that such individuals must configure their bodies to “become” the same as their mental sex.
To give an idea of how powerful this theme is in trans theory and practice, here is how Gayle Salamon, an English professor at Princeton University, begins her book“Assuming a Body,” her sweeping treatment of transgender theory: “I seek to challenge the notion that the materiality of the body is something to which we have unmediated access, something of which we can have epistemological certainty, and contend that such epistemological uncertainty can have great use, both ethically and politically, in the lives of the non-normatively gendered.”
Epistemological certainty is the main obstacle to trans theory, and trans rhetoric is thundered from the rooftops to this effect: “becoming who you really are,” “trapped in the wrong body,” and a dozen more similar phrases all testify to the inability of the mind to freely access the body in transgender theory. Perhaps Salamon’s writing can exemplify the core problem with trans theory:
I worry, however, that the attempt to pinpoint this difference of transsexuality by asserting that the transsexual body is ‘unimpeachably real’ unwittingly falls back in a problematic slippage between the assertion of a felt sense of the body (which is surely necessary) and the consequent claim that what a body is and how it is assumed are self-evident things (which is not).