Not a “Gender Critical” Feminist

Lately a disturbing big shift in how radical feminist politics regarding gender, transgenderism and trannsexuality has been reframed as “gender critical”. Let me be clear right now, I am NOT “gender critical”. I am against gender. I am a gender abolitionist. Gender is bad m’kay? Calling the radical feminist perspective on gender “critical” is a santized, middle-caste liberal way of trying to make what is not a respectable opinion, out to be one. It becomes a disingenuous way of getting men involved in the discussion too – just what we don’t need or even want!

The term “gender critical” sounds like something out of academentia. It doesn’t actually state a position. It states one is critical of something. Well its easy to be critical about a lot of things and still maintain them as institutions. I am critical of public schooling but not public schools – you see how that works? It can mean a lot of things and really ends up in women spinning their wheels talking out the sides of their mouths instead of getting to the point. Women and girls the world over do not benefit from taking a talk-shop stance on the very fabric of their oppression. The belief that it is their natural state of being AKA : GENDER.

I am not critical of that idea, I am fucking against it. That idea is misogynistic – hateful and bigoted against women and I don’t support that which is hateful and bigoted against women. Why does this even need to be explained?

The amount of “transwomen” aka men who flock to this liberal language and take it upon themselves to speak about how they’re gender-critical too is only more evidence of how the language we use matters. Its like a bad joke. Men who have such contempt for women as to behave the way they do on a daily basis, explaining back to us about how they understand our perspective. That is if they aren’t just your average autogynephilic pervert trying to divert attention away from women onto them but I digress.

How much of women identifying with the “gender critical” label is really about backlash they fear? Anytime women stand up for what is right for women they are met with backlash, and of course that is apparent with the whole gender issue. Make observations about how misogynistic and bad for women this stuff (gender) is and get met with accusations of hatred, bigotry and of course, misogynistic abuse. It makes sense why women who still care what men think would want to be able to respond to it with “I’m not hateful – I’m critical.” How comfortable for everyone. Except the women who’ve put themselves out there as targets for the crime of saying the emperor has a penis.

Terms like “gender critical” are potted terms, belonging to liberal feminism that dull the revolutionary impulse within the speaker/reader. Its important to say what we actually think and get to the fucking point. Women can’t wait.

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12 responses to “Not a “Gender Critical” Feminist

  1. Spot on. Gender critical is a dilution that caters to men.

  2. Framing female oppression around gender is the dilution itself. “Gender hurts” and “gender abolitionist” are also ways of making sure females never says its males that hurt us and it’s males we need to abolish.

  3. Yes.

    It can be a helpful halfway point in the awakening. But you’re right, we can’t stop there. We have to nail the lid on this coffin. We cannot abolish the patriarchy without destroying their most powerful weapon, Gender.

    Gender Critical is a step in the process, but we have to fight to ensure that isn’t their endpoint. Women can relearn that “gender” does not mean your biological sex, it means the control system used to enforce our oppression. “Gender Critical” gives women a term with which they can publicly, verbally critique the system, analyze its impact on their lives, and start to step away from it. So much knowledge from the 2nd wave has been hidden from us. Every wave, so many of us have to start with no knowledge, no confirmation of our feelings, no words for our situation. I am desperate for the fucking tsunami which will rise up and wash the whole stinking mess of men away.

    But it’s a rare woman who can go from happy-in-her-patriarchal-brainwashing straight to Gender Abolishionist in today’s political, social and economic climate. Do not pass Go, do not collect your pay gap $128 which you’ve been assured is actually $200. We don’t have the infrastructure in place yet to facilitate that large of a leap in consciousness. The patriarchy is strong, powerful, resourced and entrenched.

    We have to keep finding ways to show that Liberation is the goal. Teach her that the path hasn’t ended with her critique of gender, that the knowledge she has gained must be reflected by her refusals to comply with gender expectations, followed by her actions to dismantle the control system.

    Great post. Thanks for the spark.

  4. Absolutely. yes. Unfortunately, I am isolated, in a small community, have no local support on this, and although I have been a gender abolitionist all my life, any time I say this in public I receive so much backlash, that I end up not being effective at any message transferral at all 😦
    Whereas using “critical”, as pantypopo stated, is a stepping stone to at least having the conversation with the masses, all the people out there who still see “gender” as simply the polite Humanist way of saying sex. For it is true that we need our strict language of closed communities to educate ourselves, but with the masses, I have not found that to be effective. And that is always the problem ya, the difference between truth and effectiveness.

  5. wwomenwwarriors

    Yes. Thank you. I have found myself using it as well. Will knock it off yesterday.

  6. Thank you for this, Terri. I do not use the term “gender-critical” either. It’s deja vu of how “The Women’s Liberation Movement” got watered down to “Feminism.” Femme just means “Woman” – which is about as unremarkable as saying “Tree.” It also sounds suspiciously like “feminine.” As a result, it’s often conflated with femininity – which of course will sound a lot more non-threatening to men and the status quo than “Women’s Liberation.” More appalling, -isms tend to be associated with negative things – such as racism or classism. The whole thing just stinks.

    • That is a good parallel Lucky. It seems we must remain vigilant about our words. The tendency to make them less potent is always there the more we get co opted into the mainstream.

  7. “the crime of saying the emperor has a penis”

    LOL! Thank you for that. My sweet moment of the day.

  8. Feminist at Sea

    Reblogged this on Feminist at Sea.

  9. omphaloskepsis

    You state ‘Gender Critical’ sounds like something out of academia. In academia being critical doesn’t mean ‘to criticise’ it means to analyse, to evaluate the information, to assess the argument, and to see if the point of view and evidence stands up under scrutiny. It is not negative but encourages thoughtfulness.

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