Attention liberals and/or progressives. We gotta talk. We gotta talk about Ann Coulter. If you know and/or love trans women, first read this very carefully but then actively fight this in your social circles when it happens.
Whenever Ann Coulter spews nonsense, an extremely short fuse leads to some allegedly liberal/progressive person making a comment about her Adam’s apple, or referring to her as “he.” Sometimes they just short-circuit the entire process and call her a man. It’s all the same insult, though: cheap humor at the expense of trans women, who end up being collateral damage.
Most liberals/progressives do not see this connection. Therefore, let me break this down for you.
First, this is plain old misogyny. In point of scientific fact, all women have Adam’s apples. Look it up. Though they are generally less prominent than men’s, some women have larger or noticeable ones. (You’ll note also the extreme variation in men’s Adam’s apples.) Criticizing a (cis or trans) woman’s ideology by insulting her physical features is straight up misogynist bullshit.
Secondly, trans women are body-policed in this manner all the time. We are called men in order to shame us, mock us, and shut us up. Being called men dehumanizes us and invalidates us because that is not what we are. It is transphobia aimed specifically at trans women. It is misogyny specifically aimed at trans women, otherwise known as transmisogyny. This word violence has life-and-death consequences because it is directly linked to physical violence.
Trying to invalidate Ann Coulter by implying that she’s a man is this same transmisogynistic tactic. Using transmisogynistic tactics against any woman, cis or trans, is transmisogyny. It uses the idea of trans women as the insult itself. In fact, some commenters just flat out call her a tranny, using that word and trans womanhood as the insult.
So, following this, calling her a man as an insult is the same as calling her a trans woman as an insult. There is nothing wrong, negative, or insulting about being a trans woman; however, this tactic weaponises trans womanhood against us.
Ann Coulter doesn’t care what you call her; in fact she thrives on it. What is really happening then is that trans women are receiving the brunt of this because, first, the stigma of women being called men is acutely felt *EVERY DAY* by trans women. Not a day goes by that a trans woman’s womanhood and humanity are not questioned and mocked. This not only adds to that stigma but also normalizes it. It makes it seemingly legitimate in supposedly “liberal” and “progressive” discourse.
The problems should now be abundantly clear:
1) Calling out any woman’s ideology by attacking her appearance is an ad hominem, thus wrong. It is at the very minimum misogynist.
2) Calling any woman a man shows either a lack of understanding about trans women’s issues or a callous disregard for them. It is ignorant.
3) It is exactly the same tactic transphobes use against trans women. It is just as bad, then. It is transphobic… and specifically transmisogynistic… and, because trans women are women, it is misogynistic on top of all of that.
4) It is most likely even racist because trans women of color are especially affected by this type of attack. And plenty of cisgender women of color, who also do not fall into white supremacist and Eurocentric standards of feminine beauty and womanhood, are attacked this way as well. See http://transgriot.blogspot.com/2013/12/transmisogyny-isnt-just-being-aimed-at.html and follow the links.
5) Even if unintentionally and unwittingly, it is a virus spreading misunderstanding and hatred of trans women. It is enabling violence against trans women.
6) It is taking a topic, Ann Coulter, that has absolutely nothing to do with transgender and needlessly injecting transmisogyny.
7) Even if it turned out that she was trans, absolutely none of this would be negated. It would still be 210% wrong to do.
So cut this bullshit the fuck out. This hurts me and all my sisters. If you see others do this, tell them to cut it the fuck out.