I wish the MRAs of the world would spontaneously combust so I could express myself without thinking of them as the only reason not to. In saying this I realise they cannot be the reason I censor myself and especially not on something so crucial. I am horrified at the ways in which the cisters are conducting themselves at the moment. I am reminded of Pastor Niemoller and his infamous words “then they came for me”. I cannot in good conscience sit by whilst my comrades are dehumanised and othered in such a casual manner. I will have to object to this establishment at every turn.
A few months back I was recruited to a group hoping to set in motion the first feminist party the UK has ever seen. My initial thoughts were this was a good thing, without putting too much thought into the detail; it would be a first and a step up in the hierarchy. This before I’d discovered the principles of Anarchy and why reform is unacceptable. I took objection to the fact that I’d been recruited and wasn’t drawn to it organically and a quick glance at the names of the mailing list recipients revealed a very white middle class bunch who were actively having to recruit members to fill equal opportunity quotas. It made me feel uneasy because of its resemblance to the patriarchy. For example, this particular line jarred me; “people we need, previously raised: economists, women of colour, disabled women.” I am having trouble understanding why this line exists as it does and would appreciate some clarification. Of course I didn’t feel comfortable approaching this with my fellow party members, they were leading the conversation and as a minority I felt unable to object. I felt at this point that I would have to take a back seat and asked to be kept informed although I would not be actively contributing.
I have watched incredulously the ways in which they discuss anyone who is not white and cis gendered. They claim to be a party for all self-identifying women yet happily invite discussion like this:
“Self-identification does not a woman make. If this party is open to ‘self-identified ‘women’, I want nothing to do with it – in fact I will lobby and campaign hard against it. This is a travesty. Trans women are *men*. Fullstop. “
“I cannot support this as woman is not something one can self-identify as. Men can not be women.” Sic
“Whilst I do accept the spirit of this wholeheartedly, I believe expressing it in these terms is likely to bring problems up in the future. Because the power to deem a term ‘discriminatory’ or ‘offensive’ will rest on the person being addressed, there’s the potential for almost anything and everything to be found ‘discriminatory’ or ‘offensive’ on almost any ground. In other words, yes to not using offensive language, but we may have to determine for ourselves what ‘offensive’ means (within reason).
ANY OTHER EQUAL OPPS RULES YOU’D LIKE TO CHANGE TO FIT YOUR OWN AGENDA? ALSO, MUST NOT LET THE MINORITIES HAVE ANY POWER; IT’S BETTER IF IT SITS WITH US, THE POWERFUL ONES.
In fairness they were discussing the motion to invite trans women and it was passed by 16 votes to 3 but in any truly equal space, comments like the ones above would have been immediately challenged not “Please see a breakdown of the voting in the attached file as well as the comments people made, some of which it would be good to address.” Why aren’t they resulting in an automatic expulsion for hateful speech?
If the party wasn’t so intent on filling quotas of people they don’t actually care for, we might see their true colours. Recruiting WoC, disabled women and accountants (FFS) seems to be an afterthought and only because the law requires them to. Is there also a law stipulating a trans woman quota? It’d be about the only reason for involving them, based on how they seem to discuss their involvement. Or is it merely a reaction to the discourse around Intersectionality? Are they aware of its rapid growth and feigning compliance to secure votes? Whatever their reasons, I cannot say they have my support.