Idiot of the Month: “Gender is a part of identity!”

I had a Hangout conversation with someone named Sam Parsons (which he initiated) on the subject of gender. I thought it was such a great illustration of liberal logic that it should be on this blog. He can’t answer the simple question: “what is the definition of gender?” Then again, it doesn’t seem like any of them can.

I removed the timestamps and identifiers for ease of reading. His lines are in bold. Enjoy.

***

I wanted to talk to you about your community.
what community
it was like anti-gender pro-androgeny i believe\
oh yea of course
what about it
I get the idea, but the thing is that gender exists. You can eliminate gender roles, but you can’t stop people from having genders
gender are gender roles. you can’t dissociate the two.
they just put importance on different aspects of the same thing
a gender is a place on a hierarchy, just like race is a place on a hierarchy
Gender Is part of your identity. Gender roles is giving people roles based on that identity.
for some people, gender is part of how they identify yes
but for many people it is not
you’re overgeneralizing
how is that overgeneralizing
because it is only true of some people
there are plenty of people who don’t identify with their assigned gender
And those people usually identify with another gender
again, that’s not true of all people
but what is your point anyway
that you don’t have to eliminate gender to have equality, and that doing so would be impossible anyways.
again, gender is a hierarchy
not really
by definition it is a system by which some people are superior and some people are inferior
so how can there be equality within that context
there can’t
right
but that isn’t the actual context
oh I suppose you know better?
then please enlighten me
that is only the case if people are raised to believe that one gender is better than another
what is gender then
I said earlier that gender is part of identity
again, an overgeneralization, but either way, that doesn’t explain what it *is*
it is a way of
expressing identity

so is a lot of other things
people identify by race, job, ethnicity, language, favourite hobby, etc
those are not all equal things
What is “gender” that is not “race” or “job” or “hobby” or “political ideology” or “religion”
Race is biological, hobby is something you like to do, political ideology is opinions, religion is what you believe, job is something you do to make money.
What is that that is gender

you haven’t answered my question
what is “gender” specifically as opposed to all those other things
I don’t understand why you want to tell me my definition is wrong when you can’t even give me a simple one
Gender is identity, based one’s true self, as opposed to their body, opinions, beliefs, careers or hobbies.
I have given the same simple answer three times

You already said gender is part of identity
So are all those other things
So you’re a grown man who’s gonna seriously tell me you can’t tell the difference between gender and race or religion?
i just explained how those things are different
Where? You told me what the other stuff was. You never told me what gender was.
i just did
You said gender was part of identity. You said that before. I’m asking you to differentiate gender from other parts of identity.
And so far you haven’t done that.
What is “gender” SPECIFICALLY, as opposed to all other forms of identification, such as race, religion, etc
I just did that too
Then copy it again
Because I have no idea where you did that
how many times do I have to give an answer before you accept it?
WHERE IS IT?
Stop saying you gave me the answer and just copy it from what you wrote earlier
If you really did give it earlier
Because *I haven’t seen it*
So far all you’ve said is that gender is part of identity
That was my answer
Okay. But what differentiates gender from all the other parts of identity?
Do you usually not listen when you have conversations with people?!?
I am listening to you very intently. You just said “gender is part of identity” was your answer.
But I am asking you a different question.
I am asking you: How do you tell the difference between “gender” and the OTHER parts of identity?
that you asked earlier
Like race, religion, ethnicity, political ideology, hobby, etc ?
and i answered earlier
yeah, that part

Yes, what is the answer?
Gender is identity, based one’s true self, as opposed to their body, opinions, beliefs, careers or hobbies.
Okay so basically you have no answer to the question. You can’t tell the difference between someone’s gender and their race, religion, political ideology, or hobbies.
Is that right?
Because all you’re doing is repeating over and over that gender is identity.
because that is my answer
I wouldn’t have to keep repeating myself if you actually listened to what I said the first time

Okay, so you have no answer. Thanks. You could have just said that and saved us a lot of time.
So you have no idea what gender is, but you want to tell me my conception is invalid. Cool.
Here’s the problem though
That is my answer. I have said what gender is. You could have just said you didn’t want to change your mind about anything and saved us a lit of time
If you can’t even identify what gender is, how the hell could you tell if my conception is wrong or not?
All you’ve said is that gender is identity.
I acknowledged that.
But that doesn’t answer my question.
Do you understand what a definition is?
It answers your question, just not the way you wanted me to
I asked you to define what gender is: to tell me what differentiates it from other things.
How we can tell what is gender, as opposed to other concepts.
and i did
you just ignored it because you don’t agree with me

No, you only said that gender is identity. That’s not a definition, because there are many other things that are part of identity.
and I told you what makes it different
No, you did not.
but you didn’t listen
Stop lying.
All you said was, “gender is identity.”
If you said something else, it was entirely in your mind.
I said a few other things to
Do those things include a definition of gender?
read the conversation
yes

Okay then, for the record, please state clearly what your definition of gender is.
you just didn’t see it that way
GENDER IS ______________
Gender is a part of one’s identity, based upon their self, not their body, opinions, career, or hobbies, but their spirit.

***

That’s when I gave up and told him I was gonna post this on my blog. He complained for a while that I was ignoring his answers (what answers?) because I didn’t like them. Eventually I blocked him.

13 thoughts on “Idiot of the Month: “Gender is a part of identity!”

  1. stchauvinism November 2, 2015 at 07:29 Reply

    Reblogged this on Stop Trans Chauvinism.

  2. stchauvinism November 2, 2015 at 07:34 Reply

    Wow, you have a lot of patience. Have you thought about having kids? Just kidding. Why can’t these people just say “gender identity is a personal belief that a person can be other than their biological sex if they say so and a belief that the rights of those who believe in gender identity trumps those that dont.” Or something like that.

    • Francois Tremblay November 2, 2015 at 14:49 Reply

      Seems like he’s intellectually stuck on that one mantra. Like how some people are stuck on “if it’s consensual, it’s moral” or “you get what you deserve.” Unfortunately reality is always more complicated.

  3. Dana November 2, 2015 at 08:05 Reply

    He believes race is real? Hilarious. There are lots and lots of anti-racism activists who would be happy to tell him otherwise if they weren’t already way past fed up with having to explain things to stupid people.

    I look at it this way. Gender is to sex what race is to skin color.

    Skin color: Self-explanatory
    Race: Hierarchy imposed based on society’s rules about how a person of a given skin color should think and behave.

    Sex: One’s potential to produce either eggs or sperm
    Gender: Hierarchy imposed based on society’s rules about how a person of a given physical sex should think and behave.

    It’s so fucking simple. Pardon my English.

    • Francois Tremblay November 2, 2015 at 14:51 Reply

      Yes, it is silly to say that race is biological, but either way I let him say it because it didn’t seem to have any relevance to the topic.

      I’ve made a similar comparison before, but I think that sex can be compared to ethnicity. They are both things you’re born into. Gender and race are the social constructs assigned based on those.

  4. sellmaeth November 2, 2015 at 08:25 Reply

    Yes, but for some male transgenderists, gender seems to be more like a hobby. A costume to put on. They wouldn’t want to move to the bottom of the hierarchy.

  5. Laniakea Official November 2, 2015 at 16:03 Reply

    Actually the idiot of the year goes to a “manly” commenter in Wisecrack’s video on Gender .
    From “some guy i don’t give a fuck, his name” :
    response to gender:
    Yes it is real, this is proven by biology. The differences between females and males are due to sexual dimorphism which results in different roles being more engrained within female and male physiology and behaviour.

    Transgender people are a result of hormone imbalance between their bodies and their brain, they are not some freaks that just want to change their gender just because they want to like the video suggests. They are treated using Hormone Replacement Therapy, it is something that is TREATABLE.

    A person that is not suffering from gender dysphoria will not want to change his gender in any way. So it is stupid to compare these people to normal individuals and say that because some people want to change their gender, therefore gender is not real.

    Will WiseCrack do a video about Otherkins and then ask a question whether species are real, after all some people believe they are cats? This is ridiculous, probably fuelled by feminist propaganda.

    • Francois Tremblay November 2, 2015 at 16:35 Reply

      Patience. You weren’t pre-approved by the system, and I had to do it manually (not sure how the dang thing works- sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t).

      At least this person has an answer to “what is the definition of gender.” A false one which doesn’t make much sense, but a definition nevertheless.

  6. Laniakea Official November 2, 2015 at 16:03 Reply

    did my comment go through? Testing.

  7. petuniacat00 November 2, 2015 at 18:38 Reply

    This made me laugh out loud!😂 It’s the Ultimate of that kind of Internet conversation. And a perfect example of a half-educated person. You’re right he got stuck on that mantra, but he also clearly doesn’t understand the difference between ‘saying a sentence’ and ‘understanding the concept’. It’s really kind of sad. But mostly off-pissing, because why do we have to have these shitheads in our world? He and the fellow who Laniakea quotes both seem to have no concept of society. So there can’t be a social hierarchy, there can’t be socially constructed very vivid detailed ideas about who you are, like sex roles. Because for them there’s no society. A million years ago my mother taught a sociology course in community college one time. I think it was a required course because some of the kids were totally not into it. And they kept arguing with her when she was trying to teach them about social norms. That these rules are created by the people in the society and they’re different in different times and places. Some of the kids were completely freaked by that and would not have it. LOL. For them if something was a social rule or I guess I should say a rule they followed they just NEEDED to believe that it came from somewhere what? more special? than just being a social convention. So that way of thinking is a thing of that’s out there in our world. 😒

    I really like that thing Dana said about race and skin color. I’ve known since I was a kid that race was a socially constructed category that wasn’t biologically valid. But that is the perfect illustration of it. I’m going to use that. Thank you. 😊

    • Francois Tremblay November 3, 2015 at 01:35 Reply

      Well this has always been the right-wing party line (including libertarians, voluntaryists, and liberals on social issues, as well), that there’s no such thing as society, only individuals. This is an indelible part of their ideology. But if you believe that, then there can be no such thing as a social construction of anything. So you can’t understand any human behavior beyond that which arises from biology, which is a small sliver of human behavior.

  8. OutlawSage November 3, 2015 at 04:39 Reply

    I think he did give you a definition: gender is one’s spirit. When you can only define something using metaphysics it says a lot. Maybe if you try explaining to them that gendering things usually involves placing them on a hierarchy. Like how a mechanics’ jumpsuit is man gender and high heels are woman gender. I was looking for motorcycle boots and they always make the point when selling boots in woman’s sizes that they are great for lady bikers. Well I need boots in the female size range but I do not consider myself a lady biker. Or a biker for that matter. A man can be a man with a bike or a biker, but a woman with a bike will always be a lady biker. Because driving a motorcycle is a gendered thing for some reason. So when you do do it, you need a special label unless of course you’re a man then you don’t need a label because nothings wrong with that. But you know a man wearing lipstick is wrong so we need to um, explain this away that he’s a women on the inside or something. Weird, huh? Obviously a man with a man gender can’t also wear lipstick cause that’s a lady gender thing, so we assume he’s lady gender. But that means people don’t actually have genders, only things have genders. So when people put on those things or display those things, that makes the person that gender. By jove! I finally understand. So only people who don’t fit into traditional gender roles will need to make a gender mention cause everyone else is just a life support machine for a conglomeration of gender signals. When the life support machine for the gender objects isn’t the proper model than that means the machine is using the objects as expression. So people who show the traditional gender that matches their body are just carriers of gendered objects, and people who display the wrong gender are like broken or something…you could almost say they are an accident of nature…oh wait a minute! That is what they say. Wow, they must know all the secrets of life.

    • Francois Tremblay November 3, 2015 at 04:52 Reply

      Well, I think it’s more complicated than that, but it certainly has nothing to do with spirits. The relationship between assigned gender, gendered objects, and presentation/how people “read” you, is a complicated one. A man wearing lipstick would probably “read” as a man wearing lipstick, i.e. a non-conforming or gender rebelling man- unless it’s done in the context of drag, in which case it’s “funny” in a role reversal sort of way (I don’t find it funny, but that’s the idea anyway).

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