Saturday, September 04, 2021

But Trans People Are Just a Tiny Minority, So

Elsewhere, and from Hilary Mantel of all people (I love her books), we get this argument:

 I have seen this argument a number of time from bigots on the right. It goes more or less like this: "Trans people are a tiny minority of the population, so why do we have to listen to what they say, or change the way we act, or treat them like fellow human beings?"

In case you're only ten years old, that's exactly the argument that was used against disabled people, including deaf people, blind people, and those in wheelchairs. Why do we need to change the way we make buildings, run schools, pave our roads, when "those people" are only a tiny minority of the population?

It's the same argument that was made against immigrant children coming into the public school system, and dyslexic children, and autistic children: they're such a tiny minority, why should we change the system for them?

It's the same argument that was made for centuries against Jews. Against black people. Against Catholics, in some places, and Protestants in others. 

Why should the majority change its ways so that the minority may be treated fairly? Why should the majority recognize the humanity of the minority?

Honestly, if that's a question you actually need help with, I don't know what to tell you.

I do note that Mantel was upset because she was misgendered -- someone used "they" pronouns with her when she prefers "she/her" pronouns. So clearly she understands that misgendering a person is a problem. 

But apparently only when she gets misgendered. Using the wrong name and wrong pronouns with "those" people, well, they're only a tiny minority, so what does it matter?


Anonymous said...

"It's really upsetting when I was misgendered"
Like, so close, and yet so far...

delagar said...


She *almost* gets it...

Anonymous said...

I think there is an important difference: Making reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities can be substantial work. While the answer has to be "Yes, you do", I can empathize with the "Do I really have to do this?" question here.

But not being an asshole to trans people would be much less effort than being one. There is no request for special treatment. Heck, there is no need to even know who is trans and who is cis. I just don't get it; in particular coming from people who seem to be ok otherwise.

delagar said...

Honestly, I don't get it either. I don't understand why trans people upset them, and I don't understand why they feel their inability to deal with that upset justifies their rank bigotry.