the whole article is really just.. ugh.
- Sexism is institutionalized at birth. As Asher Bauer explains in “Not Your Mom’s Trans 101,” “Let’s start at the beginning. A baby is born. The doctor says ‘It’s a boy’ or ‘It’s a girl’ based on the appearance of the child’s genitals. […] the child is then raised as whatever arbitrary gender the doctor saw fit to assign.” On the one hand, this is often the setup for trans identification later in life, with the individual realizing that her gender doesn’t match up with her biological sex (as designated by the doctor and social conventions that elide sex and gender). On the other hand, some argue that girls face sexism from birth while boys, even if they later identify as women, do not, signifying a fundamental difference in terms of privilege and upbringing between cisgender and trans women.
- Gender is socially constructed. Expounding on an idea most famously discussed by Simone de Beauvoir in The Second Sex, Laurie Penny writes, “Not a single person on this planet is born a woman. Becoming a woman, for those who willingly or unwillingly undertake the process, is torturous, magical, bewildering–and intensely political.” Trans women have to function in the same patriarchal culture cisgender women do, so it’s not a huge leap to say that all women can stand together against inequality. However, even the term “cisgender” is a contentious one, as it suggests ciswomen have privileges (by “being able to” conform to the sex/gender binary) that transwomen do not. According to Miska, “cisgender privilege” is a fundamental misnomer because “we do not have gender privilege to begin with.”