The Trans Paradox
Consider the following statement:
Trans-women are real women.
It is a required belief in the current year. We are supposed to believe that trans-women are real women. Claiming otherwise is hate speech. Of course, this is crazy, and it demonstrates the insanity of Western culture in the current year. But the statement is more than just a blatant denial of biological reality. It is a semantic paradox. I’m going to call it the “trans paradox”.
The trans paradox is similar to the liar’s paradox. An example of the liar’s paradox is “This sentence is false”. If the sentence is false, then it is true, and vice versa. Thus, it cannot be assigned a truth-value. The trans paradox is also self-negating, but in a different way. If the trans paradox is true, then it is meaningless.
The trans paradox negates its own meaning because the concept of a trans-woman depends on the concept of a woman. More generally, it presupposes the gender binary. “Trans-woman” can be defined in different ways, but all of them presuppose the gender binary.
Here is the current politically correct definition from Wikipedia:
A trans woman (sometimes trans-woman or transwoman) is a woman who was assigned male at birth. Trans women may experience gender dysphoria and may transition; this process commonly includes hormone replacement therapy and sometimes sex reassignment surgery, which can bring immense relief and even resolve gender dysphoria entirely. Trans women may be heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual, asexual, or identify with other terms (such as queer).
This definition presupposes the gender binary, despite its careful wording. It defines a trans-woman as a woman who was assigned male at birth. That definition depends on the concepts “woman” and “male”, and those concepts presuppose the gender binary.
What does it mean to be assigned male at birth? In almost every case, it means that the child was biologically male, having XY sex chromosomes and male genitalia. The doctor did not flip a coin and assign gender randomly. If “male” and “female” were random labels, then they would have no meaning and we wouldn’t apply them to anyone. Certainly no one would care about being assigned the wrong label if the label had no meaning.
We all know that a trans-woman is a biological male who was correctly assigned the label “male” at birth, but for some reason wants to identify as a female. It could be that the trans-woman has a feminized brain, and for that reason wants to identify as a female. But that presupposes a psychological difference between male and female brains, a difference that normally correlates with genitalia and sex chromosomes.
If a trans-woman is a real woman, then what does “woman” mean? Could it mean someone with a female brain, regardless of genitalia and chromosomes? No, because whatever traits define a female brain, those traits are “female” precisely because they are normally associated with XX chromosomes and female genitalia. Gender identity presupposes the gender binary. A person can’t identify as “female” or “male” unless “female” and “male” are meaningful categories.
If there is no gender binary, then there is no way to go from one gender to the other, or to be “assigned the wrong gender”. Surgically changing your body to fit your gender identity makes no sense unless that identity is associated with biological characteristics. If your gender is just whatever label you choose to identify with, then it is meaningless and being trans-gender is likewise meaningless.
If a male can be a real female, then there is no meaningful distinction between male and female. Thus, if a trans-woman is a real woman, then “woman” is a meaningless concept and so is “trans-woman”.
The concept of being trans-gender presupposes two genders, male and female, that are rooted in biology. A trans-gender person is someone who has a discordant gender identity, such as a male who wishes he were female, or who wants to socially present as a female. He might want to change his body to fit his gender identity, thereby adopting a female identity for social purposes.
That was the original understanding of trans-sexuality, as it was once called. It does not deny basic facts about biology. It is not oppressive or hateful. It does not imply that we should persecute trans-people.
But the current gender ideology rejects that view. Instead, we are supposed to believe that trans-women are real women. Why? Well, basically because trans-women want to be viewed as real women. Their desire is not simply to be accepted as what they are: gender dysphoric. It is to be accepted as what they are not: real women. Therein lies the catch.
To the left, the victim is always right, and beliefs are evaluated based on how they make the victim feel, not on whether they describe reality. The left has declared that trans-people are victims of society simply because they are not accepted as real members of the opposite sex. To remedy this, we must affirm the chosen gender identity of the trans-person, even if that negates the concept of being “trans” and thus renders the exercise meaningless.