Tag Archives: gender

Cognitive Dissonance and Transgender/Transsex

cognitive dissonanceCognitive Dissonance is the feeling of discomfort we get when what we perceive clashes with our expectations. We all walk around in a mental model of the world. That should be obvious. But this is an immensely sophisticated system. When you enter a space for the first time your eyes target the most important elements and your mind blocks in the rest. As the moments pass, in response to sensory stimuli, the less critical areas are built up in your mental model in much the same way a as a computer works ‘in the background’

This process relies on assumptions that are made at a cognitive level. The sky is blue. I can measure that by using a type of light meter called a colour temperature meter. So while I cannot know how you perceive blue, I do know that whatever blue looks like in your head, the sky is that colour and we can agree on it.

What if you walked outside and the sky was yellow? I’m not talking about some beautiful sunset, just the regular sky. Ten minutes ago it was blue, now it’s yellow. What do you think of that?

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Brain Sex?

brain sex skull
Pic: Rod Fleming

Brain Sex? What is that? Some sort of cyber-intercourse?

No. ‘Brain sex’ is how many transgender activists explain how their condition came about. They specifically say that, ‘Transgender occurs when an individual of one sex has certain sex-related structures in the brain that are typical of the opposite sex.’

In other words, according to this notion, ‘brain sex’ is a physical condition and not a psychological one. Putting that more technically, what is being claimed is that what they call ‘transgender’ — not a scientific term — is caused by a form of intersexuality that is localised in the brain. This is ‘brain sex’. However, physical heteromorphism of this type should be observable. So is it?

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Bisexual, pseudo-bisexual – What’s in a word?

bisexualThe terms homosexual, bisexual and pseudo-bisexual are often misunderstood and misused. So here’s an explanation with particular relevance to transsexualism.

Homosexual

In the general vernacular, this is taken to mean ‘attraction to same sex’; so a homosexual male is sexually and romantically attracted to other males and a homosexual female to other females.

Bisexual

These are people who are attracted both to their own sex and to the opposite one. In practise, this can be sequential (one after the other) or concurrent (at the same time). In other words, the bisexual individual might form monogamous relationships, sometimes with the same sex, sometimes the other, or might establish multiple relationships with individuals of both sexes at the same time. It’s likely that social factors and the level of partner tolerance will affect this.

Pseudo-Bisexual

This term applies to a very specific sample and is NOT the same as the above. Pseudo-bisexualism is a function of one of the Male-to-Feminine trans forms, the non-homosexual or autogynephilic. In this the male subject becomes obsessed and sexually aroused by the idea of himself as a woman. As a result of this, he creates a second mental model of himself. This man is not homosexual so this erotic target must be a woman. As this gathers strength, the pseudo-bisexual autogynephile will seek out sexual or romantic encounters with men in order to validate it.

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Matriarchy is not what feminists think it is

matriarchy in the philippines pic
Pic: Rod Fleming

Western feminists, for over half a century, have argued that gender itself has been the fundamental  agent of women’s oppression. The solution often claimed, is to establish a matriarchy. But very few understand what a matriarchy really is.

Where society was based on forms of meritocracy — often on the power to make financial profit — artificial barriers that might exist in less fluid societies could be broken down by women excelling and so they could rise in the culture.

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Gender Identity Disorder and Gender Dysphoria

gender identity disorderIt is important to understand that Transsexualism, Gender Identity Disorder (GID) and Gender Dysphoria (GD) are in fact the same thing; I will use GID and GD as interchangeable in this article.  In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) of Mental Disorders, prepared by the American Psychiatric Association, the terms GID and GD apply to the same condition, depending on which edition of the DSM you look in.

Up to the fourth edition, DSM4, the term appears as Gender Identity Disorder and in DSM5 it appears as Gender Dysphoria . There is a note in DSM5, which confirms that the name was changed to Gender Dysphoria because the word “Disorder” was seen as having negative connotations and was stigmatising to people suffering from the condition. It was not changed because it was no longer considered a mental disorder — as most trans-activists will tell you. GD still appears in the DSM5 which is the DSM of “Mental Disorders”. I make no comment here about the act of or reasons for distorting or hiding the truth with wordplay to protect people’s feelings!

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Kathoey: Thailand’s Trans Sirens

kathoey phuketPhuket, Thailand. Midnight: Bangla Road is packed with tourists. They’re mostly Westerners and Russians, but many Asians and a smattering of Indians. There seems a disproportionate number of unattached males. The music is very loud, and throbbing. Outside the bars, on elevated stages, Thai girls are dancing provocatively. They’re tall, fantastically beautiful, and seductive. They look, and move, like supermodels, but with better bodies. Then you realise: there are other Thai women here too, but they’re short, cute and pretty, not at all statuesque or magnificent. Alongside  the kathoey, Thailand’s famous trans women, they are all but invisible, like candles next to a searchlight. It’s easy to see who has the attention of the gathered men.

On stage, one girl rolls her dress down to her hips so that her naked breasts and torso – she sports a delicate dragon tattoo on her back – are shown off, as she wriggles to the thrumming techno. Her body is as flawless as a Greek goddess’ and her dance mesmerising as a Siren’s: you just can’t help but watch and smile at her exquisite insouciance.

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Transsexualism: Will it end the gay lifestyle?

transsexualism rod flemingIt’s clear that there is a deal of brouhaha about the extent to which transsexualism is impacting on the lesbian and gay, and to a lesser extent bisexual, lifestyle and political hegemony in the West. This is contributing to an increasingly bitter spat about young transitioners — people transitioning gender before they reach their majority.

There is no doubt that political activists are operating on this body of young people, some with laudable motives, others not so; but why is the lesbian and gay community so exercised?

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Is the New Gay Man a failed transsexual?

New Gay Man transFor many years now, the New Gay Man, speaking through activists from Jim Fouratt to Peter Tatchell have claimed that HomoSexual TransSexuals (HSTS) are a form of ‘failed gay man’. But is this true or even a reasonable position to take?

In a recent Twitter conversation a correspondent proposed an alteration to the conventional understanding that placed homosexual men as a subset of HSTS. In other words, she suggested that, far from transitioned HSTS being ‘failures’, all homosexuals are in fact also transsexual but for various reasons some repress or deny this.

It might seem surprising, but I had never considered this inversion, or the implications of it, but the more I thought about it, the more sense it made.

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Moser’s mischievous intervention.

mischievous mayhemIn 2009 Dr Charles Moser entered the discussion about Blanchard’s Typology of transsexualism. It is worth revisiting Moser because his mischievous intervention not only hindered the progress of the science of transsexualism, but damaged some people, while favouring others.

As you may know, Blanchard separates male-to-feminine (MtF) transsexuals into those attracted to their own sex from their earliest arousal, and those who are either not attracted to their own birth sex or who develop such an attraction, usually partially, in later life. These are called, using Blanchard’s terminology, ‘HomoSexual Transsexuals’ or HSTS and ‘Autogynephilic Transsexuals’ or AGPs. (We will later quote studies that call the latter ‘non-homosexual’.)


Blanchard’s underlying thesis is that both these forms of transsexualism are stimulated by male sex drive. MtF HSTS are, essentially, seen as extremely feminine homosexual males. This is relatively easy to understand and this type was formerly known as the ‘Primary’ or ‘True’ type. The other type is much more complex and shares an aetiology with fetishistic cross-dressing men. These individuals are romantically or sexually attracted to themselves, but as women.

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Elephants in the Room (and Crocodiles)

They’re the elephants in the room, where relations between transwomen and men are concerned.

Almost without exception, the assertion is made that the men who like transwomen are straight. Yet when you talk to transwomen in private or read their blogs, a very different picture appears. Half at least of men who seek out transwomen far from being straight or anything close, are closet autogynephiliacs (AGP) (and homophobic to boot).


We would not expect honesty from these men about this; after all, look at the lengths they go just to deny their own sexuality and maintain a false façade of hetero-normativity. Their words may be taken with a moderately-sized bucket of salt. But what about the girls? Why do transwomen ever lend credibility to this falsehood? Why don’t they just call these guys out from the get-go?

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