Home/Rod Dreher/Bad Martina! Bad!

Bad Martina! Bad!

Martina Navratilova (Jimmie48 Photography/Shutterstock)

How far will transgenders and their allies go in fighting women, including lesbians? This far:

An LGBT sporting group has cut its ties with tennis legend Martina Navratilova in a dispute over transgender sportswomen.

The nine-time Wimbledon champion and LGBT campaigner was accused of being transphobic after saying that it was “cheating” to allow transgender women to compete in women’s sport, and claimed they had a physical advantage.

In an article for The Sunday Times, Navratilova wrote: “A man can decide to be female, take hormones if required by whatever sporting organisation is concerned, win everything in sight and perhaps earn a small fortune, and then reverse his decision and go back to making babies if he so desires.”

She added: “It’s insane and it’s cheating. I am happy to address a transgender woman in whatever form she prefers, but I would not be happy to compete against her. It would not be fair.”

The column caused a backlash among other LGBT campaigners and sportspeople, including Rachel McKinnon, the first transgender woman to win a world track cycling title, who called the comments “disturbing, upsetting and deeply transphobic”.

Read the whole thing. 

Of course it’s insane, and of course it’s cheating. So-called “female” athletes who were born male, and whose bodies developed under the influence of testosterone, have a clear physical advantage over athletes who were born female. If the law recognizes male-to-female transgenders as female, that’s one thing — but it is completely absurd and deeply unjust to put women athletes at a serious competitive disadvantage for the sake of ratifying what is, in the end, a political claim, not a biological one.

Hard to believe that they are doing this to Martina Navratilova, possibly the greatest female athlete of all time — and, it must be said, a lesbian who came out when that was not easy to do. But that’s where LGBT cultural politics are — more T, less L.

Take a look at this tweet from a major UK gay media outlet:


It’s Orwellian, if Orwell were high on poppers.

UPDATE: I can top that. An essayist for Out magazine condemns the Trump administration’s push to decriminalize homosexuality around the world (something I generally support), including in Iran (where they hang homosexuals), because it’s racist and colonialist.  I’m not kidding. Excerpt:

The truth is, this is part of an old colonialist handbook. In her essay, “Can the Subaltern Speak?” postcolonial theorist Gayatri Spivak coined the term “White men saving brown women from brown men” to describe the racist, paternalistic process by which colonizing powers would decry the way men in power treated oppressed groups, like women, to justify attacking them. Spivak was referencing the British colonial agenda in India. But Grennell’s attack might be a case of white men trying to save brown gay men from brown straight men, to the same end.

There are several signs that this decision is denoted in a colonial sense of paternalism rather than any true altruism. According to the report, the decriminalization campaign is set to begin in Berlin where LGBTQ+ activists from across Europe will meet to hatch a plan that is “mostly concentrated in the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean.”

That sentence alone should set off several alarm bells. First of all, the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean are huge geopolitical entities. Attitudes toward gay people differ greatly among countries and regions within those entities and attempting to gather a room of European activists on how to deal with queer issues in those regions is the definition of paternalism.

Matt in VA, who is gay, comments:

The purpose of the Trump administration homosexuality-decriminalization push will be to add another mechanism or justification for regime change, sanctions, wars of choice, and punitive action against countries the military-industrial complex and AIPAC crew don’t like anyway. It will be used to justify action against places like Iran while countries with similar laws and regimes like Saudi Arabia will see no consequences. It’s a “pinkwashing” tool to get buy-in from urban/suburban liberals and “moderate,” bourgeois conservatives. Just watch — soon we’ll be drone-bombing Third World villages and establishment Republicans will say that they deserve it because they don’t have an appreciation for gay rights.

Nothing the “national security” apparatus in our country does should ever be taken at face value. And the idea that the next part of the world that suffers from us heedlessly knocking over their regime and plunging them into civil war is going to be told “you weren’t supportive enough of *gay rights* …

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. A veteran of three decades of magazine and newspaper journalism, he has also written three New York Times bestsellers—Live Not By Lies, The Benedict Option, and The Little Way of Ruthie Lemingas well as Crunchy Cons and How Dante Can Save Your Life. Dreher lives in Baton Rouge, La.

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