All Rights reserved
There's this feminist named Germaine Greer, who was invited to speak at Cardiff University in Wales. Greer is one of those TERFs, or trans-exclusionary radical feminists, who are strident "feminists" who hate trans women. Well, Greer has said some pretty crazy things in her time, though what brought her into the news recently is that the students at Cardiff tried to have her invitation revoked (she has said she will bow out). I have my opinions on limiting free speech, and that's an op-ed I've already written, but I just couldn't let the issue of some of the things she said go. If I didn't know better this was a case of Poe's Law in effect.
In an interview with the BBC, Greer actually said that trans women do not "look like, sound like or behave like women." Congratulations, Miss Greer, you just reinvented sexism in your own image. What the hell does a woman look like? Beause I have met some really interesting butch-lipstick couples that really screw with stereotypes. What even does a feminist look like? On one hand, you have Andrea Dworkin, and on the other, Jane Fonda. One looked like the stereotype of a feminist and the other looks like Jane Fonda. Seriously, people often talk to me about Carmen Carrera, Laverne Cox, and Bailey Jay and how beautiful and glamorous they are -- then they ask what the hell happened with me because I look like I transitioned into their eighth-grade art teacher. This one trans woman I know transitioned from leather-wearing, Harley-riding biker into a leather-wearing, Harley-riding biker (she's also gay, which makes her a trans dyke on a bike!). You can't say it's about body size or muscle tone; I know I'm not the only person who remembers the wrester Chyna. That woman both frightened and aroused me, which isn't a bad thing.
There's a right way for women to behave? Well, I think that undoes about 200 years of Western feminist thought. When people ask how I can be a woman and still have The Godfather as my favorite movie, play war-themed video games, and work on my own car, I remind them that I transitioned into a woman -- not a Barbie. The director Kathryn Bigelow has made some of the best war movies of the past 30 years. Ever seen a 5-foot 2-inch woman make a former college linebacker cry? I have. Drill Sergeant Garcia kept a jar of what she called "man tears" on her desk. I think she picked her teeth with the bones of "nice guys" she lured into dark alleys.
Greer also once said, "No so-called sex change has ever begged for a uterus-and-ovaries transplant." Clearly this woman has never met a baby-crazy trans woman walking around the house with a pillow under her shirt, much less know how Lily Elbe died. Besides, the first successful womb transplant occurred this decade. And if uterus transplants were possible like that, I'm pretty sure there would be weekly exchanges between MTFs and FTMs at the local community center. The irony about Greer's sex change statement is that she's also said, "Human beings have an inalienable right to invent themselves."
Another bit of hilarity from this woman was what she said about Caitlyn Jenner: "She wanted the limelight that the other, female, members of the family were enjoying." Oh sure, because people totally transition to be on reality ... wait. I'm gonna stop there. There probably is someone crazy enough to do that just to become famous. Still, Caitlyn was on the Wheaties box back in the 1970s and has been on TV regularly since the '80s; she was famous before her kids first learned to Instagram. Please, Jenner was taking hormones in the '90s before she even met Kardashian martriarch Kris Jenner.
Look, maybe back in the 1970s, Germaine Greer was interesting, but in this day and age, she's no longer relevant. Her attitudes match closer to those of fundamentalist Christians in that they think trans people need psychiatric repair. I don't support having her thrown off campus because of her views, though. Instead, I think we need to let people hear Greer out so we can all collectively look at her and say, "Well, that was a bunch of crazy BS. Oh, isn't I Am Cait on?"
AMANDA KERRI is an Oklahoma City-based comedian and a board member for OKC Pride. Follow her at Twitter.com/EternalKerri.