Female Hysteria in 2018

Okay, so I know that this year hasn’t been stellar for female rights. But… I think we’ve officially reached rock-bottom with this one. As you all know by now, Rose McGowan was confronted the other week by an angry, entitled trans-identified male named Andi Dier. Dier is also a known pedophile. The scenario goes thusly: Rose McGowan was at a book reading for her memoir Brave and she was discussing being a survivor of rape and Hollywood’s cult of abusing women. McGowan is quite a visible female filmmaker and actress who has freely spoken about the need to bring more ladies to the Hollywood thinking table.

Interestingly enough, McGowan is a woman who talks about icky, woman things like male domination of female bodies because we have two X chromosomes. Dier didn’t like this, and things got heated (read: he threw a tantrum). In the video, he starts off by asking why she doesn’t care that trans-identified males are killed and raped more often than women (um, not true). Then, he begins screaming the usual trans rot about how women are killing trans people.

So, instead of blaming Dier’s male entitlement for his insensitive and harsh outburst and McGowan’s understandably harsh (in my mind, tame) response, people are blaming her. It is always easier to blame women for the things that happen to us. Oh, you had acid thrown on you by your psycho, religious ex? Your fault. Oh, you were gang raped on your way home from the bar because you told this psycho male “no” and he went to get his friends to jump you? Your fault. Your ex-husband stalked you to your workplace and murdered you? Your fault. In America, we have this stupid idea that blaming women will make male violence against them stop. The gist is that women can just opt out of male violence and discrimination by choosing something else, like an occupation, a partner, a sexuality. And that’s what is going on here with McGowan. People are blaming her because she’s the female victim of Dier’s aggression. It is her fault he got so angry. How dare she invalidate his special belief that she should center her entire work around him?

Given that Dier is quite aggressive to McGowan in the video, and how radical feminists are always told that men like him are a “minority” of trans activists, you’d think the trans community would be denouncing Dier. This is especially true since Dier has a history of assaulting girls. No one wants to be associated with pedophilia, right?

WRONG. Nope, the trans movement would rather denounce McGowan as a hysteric than actually do any introspection. So, what IS hysteria?

Hysteria was a 19th Century method of men turning women’s genuine concerns about a misogynistic society into a medical illness by focusing on female genitalia as the problem. You still see echoes of it today, given how some men are reacting to the #MeToo movement. But, in this context, trans males are using hysteric rhetoric and tone, consciously or not, to justify their hatred of women.

Trans male Amanda Kerri writes the following about McGowan in The Advocate:

While she talks a lot about being a strong woman — which I don’t doubt she is, with the way that she kept up her fight — that doesn’t mean that she’s not a wounded woman. The cracks in her armor are obvious. We know all too well how often our culture and media will smell blood and exacerbate a person’s emotional issues for ratings and schadenfreude. I’m sure McGowan desires to “get back what she’s owed,” but it may not be what is actually best for her. It might be time for her rest now.  She can lay her burdens down and come back stronger than ever.

Yes, Rose can be problematic and there are things for her to clarify and, yes, apologize for. However, this isn’t the time. Not because I want to protect her cisgender-privileged feminism, but because I don’t think she’s in the best headspace. Perhaps it’s time for her inner circle to quit pushing her into the spotlight, at least temporarily. She helped more with getting the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements started than nearly any of us, and for that she deserves to finally take care of herself.

And now, I swear… somewhere… I have heard… this type of language somewhere else. Ah, yes, it’s the typical “man knows what’s best, sit down, shut up” that men constantly use against women. What do we call that in our circles, ladies? We call it mansplaining, or the phenomenon of men explaining things to women that women already have direct experience with. This is incredibly misogynistic in that it directly dismisses McGowan’s actual words and arguments while branding her not as an intellectual, capable lady, but as a hysteric crazy person that just deserves some time in a padded room.

You know, the last time men spoke this way about women, we were institutionalized for thinking. That’s what is really going on here. Kerri is suggesting McGowan isn’t in her right head, that she’s crazy. “Crazy” is the 2018 term for “hysteric.” Kerri’s focus on McGowan’s “cisgender-privilege” is a direct reference to McGowan having a vagina, not a penis. Natal women have vaginas, while trans males have penises. These natal born women are referred to as “cisgender” to differentiate us from trans males. In doing so here, Kerri directly links McGowan’s sex to her words, her thoughts, and in doing so, invokes the same rhetoric of 19th Century hysteria doctors who filled asylums with free-thinking women. You don’t actually think these thoughts, McGowan, your uterus does! Being female makes women crazy, essentially.

McGowan is irrational, Kerri rational. The female is insane, while the male is always right. This is what trans activists believe and are teaching. It’s not new and innovative either, ladies, it’s been around for centuries. This is just the first time we’ve bought it hook, line, and sinker.

 

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