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U. Rhode Island Denounces Prof For Criticizing “Trans-Sex Fantasy” That Someone Can Change Sexes

U. Rhode Island Denounces Prof For Criticizing “Trans-Sex Fantasy” That Someone Can Change Sexes

Women and Gender Studies Prof. Donna Hughes: “The trans-sex fantasy, the belief that a person can change his or her sex, either from male to female or from female to male, is spreading largely unquestioned among the political left.”

You don’t hear much about it, but there is a growing divide between the transgender community and feminists who adhere to the idea that biology matters and that being a woman is about more than declaring it.

At the University of Rhode Island, Professor Donna Hughes, who teaches women and gender studies, is now under fire for challenging the left’s position on the issue.

The school has found itself in a real bind over this.

Linda Borg reports at the Providence Journal:

URI embroiled in controversy over professor’s comments about transgender individuals

The University of Rhode Island is in the middle of a controversy pitting academic rights to free speech against a professor’s comments about transgender individuals that the university calls hurtful.

Donna M. Hughes, a professor and the Eleanor M. and Oscar M. Carlson Endowed chair in Women’s Studies, wrote an online article that compared QAnon, a far-right conspiracy group, to what she calls “the trans-sex fantasy, the belief that a person can change his or her sex, either from male to female or from female to male.”

URI, in a statement published on its website, said it respects the rights and dignity of each individual and group, but “does not support statements and publications by Professor Donna Hughes that espouse anti-transgender perspectives.”

In an email response Thursday to The Journal’s questions, Hughes said she believes that a person cannot change sex.

Colleen Flaherty of Inside Higher Ed has more:

At Odds With Her University Over Gender Identity

The University of Rhode Island is distancing itself from an endowed professor of gender and women’s studies who recently wrote about what she calls the “trans-sex fantasy.”

“The ‘gender identity’ movement is canceling people’s free speech and academic freedom for anyone who doesn’t fall in line, speaks out in opposition, or even calls for the right to debate,” the professor, Donna Hughes, wrote in a recent essay for 4W, a “fourth-wave” feminist website. “People are losing social media accounts or being fired for ‘misgendering’ someone or not ‘affirming’ a person’s’ claimed ‘gender identity.’”

In the meantime, Hughes said, “an increasing number of teens are signing-up for harmful treatments with no one, not even parents, being allowed to intervene.”

Responding to criticism of the essay, URI this week released a statement saying that it “does not support statements and publications by Professor Donna Hughes that espouse anti-transgender perspectives and recognize that such discourse can cause pain and discomfort for many transgender individuals. The university is committed to transgender rights and the need to eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence aimed at transgender individuals and the LGBTQIA+ community.”

The essay by Hughes that is causing all the commotion is interesting. The first half is all about the danger of QAnon, and I won’t bore you with that, but the second half is about this debate over gender:

The political left is quick to denounce the campaign of disinformation that led to the Capitol riot on January 6. But fake news and harmful politicized beliefs leading to real harm are not solely a right-wing phenomenon. The American political left is increasingly diving headfirst into their own world of lies and fantasy and, unlike in the imaginary world of QAnon, real children are becoming actual victims.

The trans-sex fantasy, the belief that a person can change his or her sex, either from male to female or from female to male, is spreading largely unquestioned among the political left.

The trans-sex fantasy returns us to the question: “What is a woman?” Throughout history, through ignorance or malice, lies were told about women—about their intelligence, their morality, and their capabilities. These lies were used to deny girls and women a full spectrum of rights from advanced education, to the vote, to participation in sports, to living in safety. Women’s rights movements have called out these lies and worked for equal rights.

It’s fitting that Hughes says children are victims in all of this. Way back in 2015, Professor Camille Paglia made the same point, and even said indulging children in transgenderism is a form of child abuse. Watch:

In 2012, the Democrats based their national political campaign on a “War on Women” supposedly being waged by Republicans. Today, Democrats stand solidly in the camp of the transgender community. Women who oppose this are shunned or worse by the left.

Featured image via YouTube.

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Comments

southern commenter | March 26, 2021 at 11:15 am

It’s impossible to change sexes. One cannot change the DNA one is born with.

What should be condemned is the believe that josef mengele experiments can cure a mental illness

    Joe-dallas in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 26, 2021 at 11:36 am

    What should be condemned is the belief that josef mengele style experiments/treatments can cure a mental illness,

      The Friendly Grizzly in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 26, 2021 at 12:00 pm

      Psycho-docs seem good at that sort of thing. Shock treatment and lobotomies come to mind…

        the mental health profession has a long and sordid history of fad diagnosis. lobotomies , shock treatments were the forerunners of the josef mengele style experiments. Though at least they had a basis in thinking they might help.

        Repressed memory has been completely discredited, once it was understood. Transgender has all the hallmarks of a faddish diagnosis simply planted in the mentally ill persons mind

          The Friendly Grizzly in reply to Joe-dallas. | March 26, 2021 at 4:41 pm

          Seeing what the psychos did, b0th ologist and iatrists, during the Bucky McMartin daycare trials was enough to make me question the entire field.

          Remember, one space separates “therapist” from “the rapist”.

          I often have depression and think counseling may be the answer. Then I remember: those people charge three figures per hour fees to say “h’mm”? and, “is that so?”, then tell me I want to kill my father sand [sleep with] my mother.

Transgender = “a symptom of cultural collapse” – she hit the nail on the head.

    henrybowman in reply to Ben Kent. | March 26, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    I keep having flashbacks to those old photos of Weimar cabarets and gay brothels. They were big on child prostitution as well.

Chromosomes don’t lie.

Physiology.. it is immutable.. pretty much… deal with it.. but no, we have to pretend that identity is physiology.. I will not pretend.

BTW 1 + 1 = 2…… go ahead, call me a racist.

Eating their own…

They are gluten free. They are easy to catch. They go well with several condiments. Most are pudgy and tender. They are not endangered and are self sustaining.

Eating their own….

Swell. A pissing contest among two sets of genocidal lunatics. Is there a way BOTH sides can lose?

    henrybowman in reply to Recovering Lutheran. | March 26, 2021 at 8:55 pm

    Both sides always lose. The problem is, never fast enough. It’s like those Something vs. Godzilla films. Tokyo is always toast before they end.

Let’s say, for a moment, Trans is perfectly medically valid expression of gender. I would still have a problem with 1/50th of one-percent of the population forcing the other 99.995% how to act and what to say. It is hugely selfish to demand the whole world conform to your specific condition.

Imagine if people over 6-foot 6-inches demanded everyone wear 5-inch heels so that they do not have to bend down and could “feel better” about their condition. People would have a fit. They would ridicule them and call them out for selfishness.

This is no different.

Excuse the pun but, it takes real balls to demand the world contort itself to your condition. The “right” pronoun for such people is “self” with the suffix “ish” = selfish. (yes, “self” is a pronoun, and the “ish” turns it into an adjective. look it up)

stevewhitemd | March 26, 2021 at 1:29 pm

I suspect the good Dr. Hughes and I wouldn’t agree on much in this world, but I will say she makes an excellent point when she notes how women and girls suffer the disproportionate effect of the trans-gender movement.

Let’s face it: if a woman who claimed to be a man came into the men’s locker room at the health club, the rest of us men would snicker. Turn that situation around and no one is snickering. The big, hairy dude claiming to be ‘Delores’ is going to be intimidating.

I’ve read that there is a man, claiming to be a woman, who is accepted as a woman fighter in the MMA. He, with all the advantages that testosterone has given him up to when he decided to be a ‘she’, has now fought a half-dozen women in the ring. And fractured two of their skulls. I need someone in the transgender movement to explain to me how this is acceptable.

So I’ll readily admit that Dr. Hughes has this one right, and as an academic I’ll stand with her.

    henrybowman in reply to stevewhitemd. | March 26, 2021 at 8:45 pm

    I’ve read that there is a man, claiming to be a woman, who is accepted as a woman fighter in the MMA… fought a half-dozen women in the ring. And fractured two of their skulls. I need someone in the transgender movement to explain to me how this is acceptable.

    No one did this better than South Park.

    randian in reply to stevewhitemd. | March 26, 2021 at 10:21 pm

    Let’s face it: if a woman who claimed to be a man came into the men’s locker room at the health club, the rest of us men would snicker

    Perhaps so, but it isn’t as if feminists have stopped being hypocrites. They would happily go whole hog demanding women be let into men’s spaces, including your locker room, regardless of whether the woman claims to be a man. Why else do you think female reporters can’t be excluded from men’s locker rooms yet the reverse is never allowed because men are all rapists and such. It’s about power and nothing else.

    mark311 in reply to stevewhitemd. | March 29, 2021 at 6:52 am

    I think you might be referring to the Fallon Fox controversy. It was worse than that, She didn’t tell anyone she had transitioned. Ie she fought in successive fights where the opponents thought she a women from birth.

“The university is committed to transgender rights and the need to eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence aimed at transgender individuals and the LGBTQIA+ community.”
_______________

“Transgender” people don’t have the right to demand that nobody ever speak any truth or offer any opinion that causes them discomfort. They also don’t have the right to claim “discrimination” because somebody says something about “transgender” people that they don’t like.

Dr. Hughes’ opinion is shared by millions of Americans. It is a fact that there is presently no way to transform a biological woman into a man, or vice versa. Perhaps someday science will advance to the point where we will have such technology, but for now all that doctors are doing is making cosmetic changes, and not very convincing cosmetic changes at that. For example, is there anyone who looks at the photos of Dr. Richard/Rachel Levine (formerly of Pa and now at Biden’s HHS) and thinks that he is a real woman? Of course not. He has the physiology of a man, because he still is a man, a man who is pretending (and not very successfully) to be a woman.

If “transgenders” want to delude themselves, that’s their right. But neither they, nor any universities nor governments nor anybody else, has the right to demand that the rest of us play along with their delusions.

I will believe that people can actually change their sex when Dr. Richard/Rachel Levine gets pregnant and successfully bears a child. For all of human existence, childbearing has been the signature privilege and/or burden of women.

Until recently, childbirth was a frightening and dangerous experience for women. Although a man can make himself look and act like a woman, he can never share in this privilege nor bear this burden.

Sex: male and female, is immutable. Gender is sex-correlated attributes (e.g. sexual orientation): masculine and feminine, respectively. Transgender spectrum from homosexual to neogender. Transvestites are trans-social, first. Transgender conversion therapy occurs through psychiatric propaganda, surgical corruption (e.g. castration, augmentation), and medical manipulation (e.g. hormones).

    Joe-dallas in reply to n.n. | March 27, 2021 at 9:33 am

    “Transgender conversion therapy occurs through psychiatric propaganda, surgical corruption (e.g. castration, augmentation), and medical manipulation (e.g. hormones).”

    In other words – performing josef mengele style experiments.

“URI this week released a statement saying that it “does not support statements and publications by Professor Donna Hughes that espouse anti-transgender perspectives and recognize that such discourse can cause pain and discomfort for many transgender individuals. The university is committed to transgender rights”

But this woman is “a professor and the Eleanor M. and Oscar M. Carlson Endowed chair in Gender and Women’s Studies.” You have certified her as an expert, and used her as a draw to enroll students who want to learn the subject.

You can’t have it both ways, URI. Do your administrators and lawyers know more about gender than your own endowed chair in Gender Studies? Then why did you hire her? You could just have your legal team teach the class.

    GatorGuy in reply to henrybowman. | March 28, 2021 at 3:38 pm

    Right. And I wonder how freighted, in terms of the cancel culture, is the term “support”. What exactly does that term, if distinct, mean, as opposed, say, to “agree”?

    If URI means, we just don’t agree with the esteemed professor on this point and nothing consequential is in store, why say it publicly? Who cares what the Dean, the Provost, or the Administration think in this regard?

    Or, on the other hand, might any of these higher-ups be hinting at something; are we talking something like “a shot across the bow” or something?

    Anyway, keep this in mind: Vis-a-vis the much vaunted and cross-culturally supported tenets of wokeism, in the university and at large in the public square, bona fide, unwoke feminists’ days seem quite numbered. So say, it seems, The Woke.

Famed and legendary, mid-20th-century UCLA Men’s Basketball Coach John Wooden was fond of pointing out what we can view as a widely applicable caveat: Never mistake motion for action, “activity for achievement,” he astutely cautioned. https://www.bing.com/search?q=john+wooden+quotes&qs=SS&pq=john+wooden&sc=8-11&cvid=0948A220CF2D4C7BB452F85DA9FDAD72&FORM=QBRE&sp=1

It follows, pretty much, that the present URI professor and bona fide feminist is, knowingly or not, a follower of this Woodenian notion. She’s saying, after Wooden, don’t mistake gender for sex — effort for effect; in other words, not every tool or title, in and of itself, gets the job done.

Put another way, the poet remains correct when he observes, despite attempts to call it otherwise, a rose is still a rose. And, more generally, the brilliant wit, who observed, “Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense,” cannot be praised too much. https://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/9325.Gertrude_Stein

Sex, you see, is where the action is, and should, by all reasonable and worthy accounts, stay put. But, alas, today its meaning and operation, its foundational importance, are clearly up for grabs, in chaos.

And women, as defined by the only valid and sound determinant in the end, sex, are losing — and stand to lose more over time. How could this rationally have been the feminist plan? Clearly, it wasn’t, if I’m reading Professors Wright and Paglia right.

Historically, the substituting of “gender” for sex in our everyday and legally binding language was pretty much the mainly Leftist Justice RBG’s more culturally palatable and subtle, little sleight of hand maneuver, however she intended its legal form and function in the end to control the social and political landscapes with respect to civil, especially women’s rights in the public square. (Did she fail, later in her career as an intellectually honest idea-maker and -leader, to call out the publicly evident misuse and abuse of her probably well-meaning semantics and jurisprudence?)

Seen in this light, the current “men can simply and freely choose to be women” dogma is both absurd and perverse, not to mention noxious to the female sex. Gender is fluid, okay; and sex is for real and lexically prior.

Control the language and you control the culture; lose the freedom to express oneself in reasonable, accepted, logically conceived terms and resultant ideas and you might as well forgo all attempts at attaining the traditional point and purpose of true argument.

https://townhall.com/columnists/robjenkins/2021/03/28/losing-the-language-losing-the-argument-n2586993

I keep hearing (and really tiring of) the claimed juxtaposition — and presumed coherence and cogency — of the tyrannical demands of the few percenters, at best, and the promise and purpose of democracy.

You, dear so few, have none of the hegemony-aimed, exclusory, and punitive rights in a bona fide “democracy,” albeit one that, so basically inspired and styled, still functions as a constitutional republic, you woke idiots!

No one currently has the right to harm you, or even get in your liberty-and-justice-powered, other-respecting way to obtain and achieve, but the majority of our society owe you all nothing more, except for the normal civil courtesies owed anyone else.

So, get real, I’d add directly. Practice democracy, and shut up about your victimology and aim and need to falsely characterize, oppress and marginalize the rest of us. It’s not only delusional and noxious; it’s also very, very boring. Most of all, and more to the point here, it’s undemocratic.

Its worth noting as I understand it from the professors essay that she does believe in Gender reassignment (as opposed to sex reassignment) that is to say Gender is a social construct and sex is biological. Assuming I’ve fairly characterised her position i agree with her position on this. I would say that there is a fairly heated debate on the left about these issues, there is a considerable conflict between those who might be terms ‘TERFS’ and those who aren’t.

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