In an interview, J.K. Rowling, the children’s fantasy author under siege from transgender activists, bemoaned a “backlash” against feminism. “It would never have surprised me that there would be a massive backlash, but I wouldn’t have expected it to come from what I would have broadly seen as ‘my team’.”
Like a lot of “gender critical feminists”, she misinterprets the transgender movement as a backlash against feminism, when it’s actually the culmination of feminism. No western movement hated women as much as feminism. Feminists were ruthlessly critical of women’s habits, their interests, preferences and desires. True feminism required publicly breaking with traditional roles and expressing public hostility for the women who chose to live that way.
When Hillary Clinton wanted to show off her feminist bona fides, she sneered, “I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas, but what I decided to do was to fulfill my profession.” Hillary was just echoing her elders, like Betty Friedan’s slur that being a housewife made it impossible “for a woman of adult intelligence to retain a sense of human identity”.
Hillary Clinton, in her iconic pantsuit, became the model for a late stage feminism that evinced contempt for feminity and adulation for masculine virtues. Younger women hate that model. 52% of younger Republican women and 23% of younger Democratic women in a recent survey said that they believed that feminism had done more harm than good. But what else is left?
While men joining female teams may be the most public face of the transgender movement, there are ten teenage girls undergoing some form of destructive ‘gender affirming care’ that’s distinguishable from any other method of self-harm only by the fact that it occurs under medical supervision for every one of those men who decides that he was born with a ‘female’ brain.
The real transgender movement is teenage girls getting drastic surgeries to appear masculine. as the culmination of a century of fashion trends that confused masculinity with empowerment.
But that’s just another way for teenage girls to destroy the image they see in the mirror.
In 2020, the number of teenage girls hospitalized over suicide attempts rose 50%. Suicide rates are increasing faster among teenage girls than among teen boys. Depression rates are also shooting up with 1 in 5 teenage girls having had a major severe depressive episode in one year.
According to the feminist model, life has never been better for women and girls. Women outnumber men in college so dramatically that there are two women going to class for every man. Women are now a majority in medical school and law school. Girls are being tracked through STEM programs, being pushed to code and to become jet fighter pilots.
And yet suicide rates, depression and general unhappiness are off the charts.
Feminists blame the unrealistic depictions of women in the entertainment industry, but the models have been shoved out the door. Any fashion photoshoot or commercial has to include at least one morbidly obese person from the ‘before’ part of a Weight Watchers ad. ‘Fat shaming’ has entered the lexicon as a hate crime. And yet everything is worse than ever.
J.K. Rowling and other gender critical feminists are right to blame peer pressure and the media for encouraging teenage girls to engage in transgender self-mutilation, but the question is why are teenage girls so much more vulnerable than their male counterparts to self-destruction?
Why do so many girls hate the idea of becoming women?
Feminism spent two generations destroying any sense of joy that girls had about femininity. The political and academic poisons quickly made their way into the entertainment industry and lifestyle publications. Girls have been told over and over again that they need to be more like boys. Is it any wonder that they’re trying to become boys at such record rates?
The transgender movement is the dead end of feminism. It’s why so many feminists have embraced it. J.K. Rowling is baffled by the betrayal of feminism. How could women who have based an entire movement on the unique experiences of women now deny that women exist?
But the erasure of women, of sex, and of the male-female binary was what many feminists wanted. Gender assimilation is their final triumph, ushering in a world where the only remaining women are men. While gender critical feminists (and most sane people) spend a lot of time discussing what’s wrong with them, it might be more productive to discuss what’s wrong with the teenage girls who are much more representative of the self-destructive social sickness.
If feminism works, why are so many women and girls so unhappy with their lives?
“I see so much conflation of femininity with femaleness. We were fighting to stop that conflation, and there they are, in my view, embracing that,” Rowling complains at one point.
Maybe that conflation is actually healthy and fighting against is what’s unhealthy.
“We’ve got these rights and we’ve got all these amazing women doing feminist analysis, and it will change, it really will change. By the time I’m my mother’s age, I thought, my daughters will have it so much easier. But now I think we’ve gone backwards. I think we’re living through a nightmare,” Rowling wondered.
Maybe feminist analysis was never the solution here. The nightmare is that feminist analysis proved no better than Freudian analysis at understanding what women wanted.
Feminism promised to liberate women to live their lives as they pleased. Instead it tore down what they had, chained them to a set of masculine expectations and punished them when they wanted to do something else. The economic system welcomed a massive labor force, the decline of marriage and the family, even as it’s killing our society and young women.
Western nations have become societies of broken people who are unhappy with themselves. And there can be no happiness without a sense of fulfillment that comes from purpose and meaning. Plugging a generation of young women into the panopticon of social media hasn’t produced purpose of meaning, only depression and a greater appetite for self-destruction.
Millions of Americans of all ages and sexes have decided that they don’t want to exist anymore. They’re killing themselves at unprecedented rates with shotguns and fentanyl, with mass shootings and unnecessary surgery. There’s something in the mirror that they don’t want to see and the thing they don’t want to see is themselves. Escapism, binging Netflix, video games, bad novels and worse politics can only do so much. They’ve been told that the end is near. Global warming will wipe out the environment. And it’s no loss because we’re all a bunch of racists.
You can’t tell people that they’re a plague on the world, that they want all the wrong things and that the world would be a better place without them and not expect them to act on it.
Young women are more vulnerable because they’ve been hollowed out by feminism. All the programs that were meant to build up their self-esteem have instead destroyed it. They are told that life offers them nothing except the opportunity to be the best men they can be. Is it any wonder that they spend thousands of dollars destroying the girl looking back at them?
What some used to do with drugs and alcohol is now being performed with exotic surgeries, but the end result is still the same. Feminism has won its ultimate victory over those women.
The transgender movement is not a backlash to feminism, it’s a consequence.