Home » Uncategorized » Males: To castrate or not to castrate?

Males: To castrate or not to castrate?

I loved Valerie Solanas’ so-called SCUM Manifesto. Particular parts that come to mind are those regarding trannies as a subconscious acknowledgement by males of their being defective females and obsolete. A m2t in a similar vein proposed that m2ts are self-destructing their maleness. As a radfem, I am confused by seeing arguments for castration of sex offenders (of which 1.) males predominate and 2.) trannies have the same rates of offense as other males) vs. the importance of physical integrity.  On the plus side, trannies who get orchis or SRS can’t breed.

However, since when did people not engage in mutilation? Certainly well before trannies came along. There have always been body modifications, and plastic surgery is popular among women. In the trans vs. radfem debates, both sides are arguing which are the more mutilated, plastic, vain bimbos: feminine, gender-conforming, het females and effeminate, gender-nonconforming (sometimes gay) males.

When it comes to trannies, there is a particular outrage that has not been seen either with other males or male-identified women. First it was that trannies are appropriating womanhood; now drag queens are appropriating womanhood. Which is it? Drag queens are misogynistic and racist, sure, but femininity is not synonymous with femaleness. It is a male fantasy that never belonged to females anyway, but a social conditioning imposed on them by males since birth. Parodying femininity to expose its ridiculousness does not harm females.

Yet many trannies get their start as drag queens, and some activists have been arguing for (male) reproductive rights. Again, I ask: how is this unique to trannies and not males in general? Trannies are a small percentage of the population and do not cause the same amount of hardship like the males in leadership positions who pressure females to wear makeup, high heels and skirts for work (women have their own special dress codes see), or the males in relationships with females who they pressure to shave, wax, engage in porn-based sex acts and look the other way when it comes to their porn usage, and have children.

Do you know any trannies in real life? I do, and while they were typically male behaving with stereotypical ideas about womanhood (mostly bisexual geeks also involved in kink and polyamory with one in particular who was very non-passing), I’m skeptical of the “stranger danger” hype surrounding the trannies entering female-only spaces. Pretty much any male can enter a female-only space by declaring himself trans or going in drag (see Gregory Gorgeous, a gay male who used women’s bathrooms and is now a tranny known as Gigi Gorgeous). The bathroom seems to be the one place feminist and non-feminist women alike can unite together to defend as a female-only space, and that’s where the struggle ends, unless we’re talking about religious women demanding female-only spaces for exercise and sports (religious patriarchy is a whole other topic altogether). Michfest? Mostly known as a womyn-born-womyn feminist event, including – but not limited to – lesbians.

Another example is allowing trannies as contestants for beauty pageants. The pageants did not suddenly become worse for them. Who believes that ridiculous requirements like not having a boyfriend or virginity aren’t harmful? Beauty pageants aren’t a female-only space, LOL. Their key word, after all, is “beauty.” For women, beauty is inextricable from femininity.

Two types of genderists exist:

– Genderists who know about sexual dimorphism yet adhere to gender as exemplification of one’s sex and a marker to emphasize sex differences.

– Genderists who conflate sex and gender.

How do I know gender is used to emphasize sex differences? Look at the hierarchical, gendered roles of dominant-submissive we have in regards to men and women: Johns and prostitutes, masters and slaves, husbands and wives, fathers and mothers. Nowadays, we know that biology is not necessarily destiny and that social conditioning is far more influential in telling us how to act or what to do, like in this quote by Andrea Dworkin:

“One does not say, for instance, women have delicate hands, therefore women must be surgeons. Or women have legs, therefore women must run, jump, climb. Or women have minds, therefore women must use them. One does learn, however, that women have sex organs that must be used by men, or the women are not women: they are somehow less or more, either of which is bad and thoroughly discouraged. Women are defined, valued, judged, in one way only: as women—that is, with sex organs that must be used.”

Or this quote by Emma Goldman:

“Nowhere is woman treated according to the merit of her work, but rather as a sex. It is therefore almost inevitable that she should pay for her right to exist, to keep a position in whatever line, with sex favors. Thus it is merely a question of degree whether she sells herself to one man, in or out of marriage, or to many men. Whether our reformers admit it or not, the economic and social inferiority of woman is responsible for prostitution.” 

— Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays (1911)

Indeed, an understanding of basic biology does not a radfem make. Even in the 50s, people had an understanding of basic biology. That didn’t stop them from enforcing gender roles, being homophobic, and ultimately giving way to transgenderism, where men supposedly make better women than women themselves – or at least are more beautiful, since patriarchy judges a woman’s worth on her adherence to conventional beauty standards associated with femininity. Yet most concerning to me is the lesbophobia: young women are pressured to transition, and parents (yes, mothers too) encourage them because they prefer sons over daughters.

I am very familiar with conservative ideas about gender used to enforce heterosexuality and gender conformity. My own mother thinks it’s disgusting for a woman to not wear makeup, shave and wax, is homophobic and anti-abortion, and comments that she couldn’t tell the women on Latino television shows were actually trannies because they were so beautiful. Conservatives will favor trans people over gays and lesbians, every time.

As the allying of conservatives with the transgender movement shows, transgenderism is actually gender conformity. It’s also very consumerist in the acquiring of hormones and (through plastic surgery) costly body parts. There are ways of rebelling that do not end up full circle, though. Radical feminism taught me that if something appeals to males, it is not truly subversive and does not liberate women.

Sometimes I think that Valerie Solanas’ so-called SCUM Manifesto was not merely satire, but truthful in that patriarchy is made up of projections of female truths; that males are constantly seeking wholeness with females; and that masculinity is inherently toxic. It’s a work that is incredibly relevant today. In the struggle against genderism, non-conformity matters more than emphasizing sex differences. I hope to see more gender-nonconformity in order to overthrow this sex-caste system.

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10 thoughts on “Males: To castrate or not to castrate?

  1. “Conservatives will favor trans people over gays and lesbians, every time.” Amen – and that’s the scary thing. The few lone conservative voices that speak up against transgenderism are not met with the same level of vilification as leftist or radical women. I think Solanas’s satire was pretty spot on in parts, too.

  2. So much to agree to. Having suffered the loss of my testicles, I’m all for body integrity. I don’t think the lack of testicles makes me any less of a man. Even when, initially, complications prevented the use of hormone replacement therapy and I was, essentially, a eunuch: unable to feel desire, unable to have sex, lacking virility all round. But, there was still a maleness that never went. And thankfully returned in full once the testosterone supplement kicked in. One good thing did come from being a eunuch was that I stopped thinking of women as sex objects and could relate to them on a different level. Not with me being a weird type of woman. Rather me being me without the rush of testosterone clouding my judgment. Another good thing was that I could relate to Varys.

    Now that I’m on hormone replacement, the testosterone rush is there, but so are the feelings and judgment i developed as a “eunuch”. Trannies must get over themselves, they’ll never be.woman.

    – Your Ball-less supporter.
    Peace.

    • As I told an MRA, Solanas herself said that there was no “society for cutting up men”, the title of that manifesto wasn’t even invented by her.
      HOWEVER – I can see how it is true now, exactly in the same way that MadTV’s “male lesbian” skit is true now. https://youtu.be/bgcLfohtFbE The times, they are a-changin’!

      Double Dialogues – Issue 12:
      “In tying men to their bodies, the text inverts misogynist claims about women’s bodies, their periodic toxicity and the aetiological discourses which account for their supposed predisposition to hysteria. The polemic reverses ancient claims about women’s obsession with the bedroom: a charge that was made, for example, in Euripides’ tragedy Medea by Jason about women generally and Medea in particular (Warner 1968: 76). While Solanas was not alluding to Euripides, she was responding to the testimony of the long lineage of western philosophy and medical thought that tied women to their bodies in a way that was dissymmetrical to the ways in which it conceptualised the male subject, the theories of hysteria being the most notorious. Rightly criticised in feminist discourse as a relic of Victorian misogyny in particular, the SCUM Manifesto mocks these theories with no little amount of glee.

      The SCUM Manifesto accounts for man’s obsession with sex via Freudian transference, cast in the language of neo-Freudian ideas of projection and compensation.”
      http://www.doubledialogues.com/issue_twelve/Kvistad.html

      http://www.studentpulse.com/articles/589/the-shock-value-of-the-scum-manifesto
      http://cas.umkc.edu/english/publications/youngscholarsinwriting/documents/9/16scummanifesto.pdf
      http://www.radicalpedagogy.org/radicalpedagogy1/Up_from_SCUM__Radical_Feminist_Pedagogies_and_Consciousness-Raising_in_the_Classroom.html
      http://nomorepotlucks.org/site/revenge-as-radical-feminist-tactic-in-the-scum-manifesto-moynan-king/

      • That first link didn’t work. The other links that I read didn’t have any theories about SCUM Manifesto being satire, apart from a short mention of an author who thought it was, but there’s not really any reasoning presented. I do know that some critics believe that the SCUM Manifesto is satire. I don’t believe it is, though.

      • The first link, which is now broken, is the one I quoted from. She was rumored to have taken her writing seriously, by unnamed sources. But everything else indicates it’s satire. So unless there was a disclaimer or personal statement from her saying it wasn’t (which there isn’t), it’s up to interpretation, and I don’t see why a serious portrayal of it as satire is all that bad. My point still stands; even if it wasn’t true back then, what it says about men (especially with so many being transgendered) is true now. But here’s the quote of hers I was referring to, and some other quotes about it being satire.

        “In an interview with Village Voice reporter Howard Smith, conducted after Solanas was released from prison, she says about the Society for Cutting Up Men,’It’s hypothetical. No, hypothetical is the wrong word. It’s just a literary device. There’s no organization called SCUM – there never was, and there never will be.[…] I mean, I thought of it as a state of mind.’ ”
        – p. 209 of Acts of Gaiety: LGBT Performance and the Politics of Pleasure

        “If we examine the text more closely, we see that its analysis of patriarchal reality is a parody […] The content itself is unquestionably a parody of the Freudian theory of femininity, where the word woman is replaced by man […] All the cliches of Freudian psychoanalytical theory are here: the biological accident, the incomplete sex, “penis envy” which has become “pussy envy,” and so forth […] Here we have a case of absurdity being used as a literary device to expose an absurdity, that is, the absurd theory which has been used to give “scientific” legitimacy to patriarchy […] What about her proposal that men should quite simply be eliminated, as a way of clearing the dead weight of misogyny and masculinity? This is the inevitable conclusion of the feminist pamphlet, in the same way that Jonathan Swift’s proposal that Irish children (as useless mouths) should be fed to the swine was the logical conclusion of his bitter satirical pamphlet protesting famine in Ireland. Neither of the two proposals is meant to be taken seriously, and each belongs to the realm of political fiction, or even science fiction, written in a desperate effort to arouse public consciousness”
        – sociologist Ginette Castro

        A “dittoed document of pathological proselytization with occasional overtones of unintentional satire”
        – Paul Krassner, personal acquaintance of Solanas

      • I suppose you can believe it’s a satire. However, I personally see no reason to think of it as satire. Of course the organization doesn’t exist. I never thought it did. But it definitely should.

      • There are so many males now who are transgendered. However, they are not ‘allies’ to SCUM-minded radfems. If only they were! Castration would also cut down on pedophiles. I definitely think SCUM Manifesto was brilliant and insightful, besides.

    • Interestingly, major philosophers are a rule63 of Solanas. From the links I posted above:

      “Although feminist and nonfeminist critics alike dub SCUM Manifesto the work of a “manhating, crazed lesbian,” it is actually an important radical feminist text of the women’s rights era (Third 106). As journalist Suzanne Moore emphasizes, “The thing is, you either happen to think this [SCUM Manifesto] is a work of unadulterated genius, or you dismiss it as the ravings of a loony psycho-bitch, not understanding that this is exactly what makes it so compelling and so charged with insight” (48–49). Scholarly discourse available on SCUM Manifesto is limited in scope, primarily concerned with the juxtaposition of Solanas’s radicalism with that of other feminists of the time, the classification of her work as one of violence and satire, and the argument surrounding the question of her sanity. Much of this discourse ignores the fundamental themes and strategies the Manifesto employs, overlooking her insightful remarks and intuitive claims.” (SCUM Manifesto: The argument for a male misogyny)

      “By presenting and analyzing aggressive factual claims, Solanas boldly reverses traditional views and appalls the reader into challenging society’s unjust attitudes toward women. After degrading men’s uselessness, she contends, “Women, in other words, don’t have penis envy; men have pussy envy” (Solanas). Contradicting one of Sigmund Freud’s famous theories, Solanas leads the reader to believe that men actually envy women. Her assertion seems brash and irreverent, but she uses her knowledge in psychology to establish credibility (she received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Maryland and did almost a year of graduate work at the University of Minnesota). In addition, Solanas divides her manifesto into sections that show how men control society and disempower women. For instance, in “Philosophy, Religion, and Morality Based on Sex,” she argues that for men, “‘wrong’ is sexual ‘license’ and engaging in ‘deviant’ ‘unmanly’ sexual practices” while for women, according to men, “‘wrong’ is any behavior that would entice men into sexual ‘license’” (Solanas). The quotations around words like “wrong” reveal Solanas’s sarcasm and distaste for societal principles. Even though men desire sex, they criticize women for offering it, and since they cannot have sexual freedom, they do not allow women to have any either. By identifying this injustice, Solanas urges her audience to question not her rationality, but that of society’s sexism. Solanas espouses radical factual claims to push her readers into disputing the unfairness toward women, but takes large risks to do so and may offend them instead.” (The shock value of the SCUM Manifesto)

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