The Culture Wars Are Over

I think it’s time that some of the transgender activist types got the message that times are changing. Silly fights like the Autumn Sandeen/LaBarbera sideshow act are yesterday’s entertainment. Politicians of various stripes are coming to terms with the fact that their histrionics about abortion and gays in the military is no longer relevant. The Springeresque culture of the last two decades was a phase, and now we are entering a new one. Nobody will be taking transgender “rights” seriously in this emerging America. Identity politics is part of the culture wars, and the culture wars are now over.

The following is from a post I made on Zoe Brain’s blog. I hope that people involved in this argument can stop with the buzzwords, the memes, and all the other things that serve only to cloud the dialog. Time will tell.

The political climate that allowed the idea of transgender to flourish no longer exists. This isn’t a turn to the right, this is a fundamental shift in American politics towards pragmatism and getting things done. Our heads are not in the clouds anymore as they were the last 20 years. And the old left-right paradigm of the last 40 years no longer applies; that was an artifact of the fight between two particular generations, and one of the generations is no longer in the political picture.

The culture wars are over. Much like cold war relics who refused to change with the times, the culture warriors continue to spit venom, though they are quickly losing steam. Their time is over, and the signs are everywhere.

If you have the time, watch some of these health care town meetings. The tone is unlike anything I have seen in politics. I just watched an exchange between the crowd and the senator who was speaking. The senator asked why the people were shouting, and the crowd said “We don’t trust you”. This is going on all over the country. People don’t care about useless ideology, they want solutions.

I believe that within a few years the transgender lobby, existing as a branch of the GLBT, will fall silent and cease to exist in any meaningful form. People who are strident in their beliefs today will distance themselves from them in times to come. They will find a new way to cope with their lives.

And that brings me to the central problem I have with transgender with regard to actual transsexual people. It is a bright, shining lie that keeps us from becoming who we were meant to be. It is a crutch that none of us need. Personal truth is something to be explored and cherished, it is not something to hide from through labels like transgender.
All of us deserve better.


2 Responses to The Culture Wars Are Over

  1. I agree completely. While it can be amusing to watch the extremist’s silliness, it gets boring after a while, and it really does harm in the long run. The extremes rarely actually matter. It is the vast middle that really makes the choices.

  2. Jessica says:

    I must say I have a different view of the health care town “hells” that are happening everyday.

    In many ways, I believe, these are the next level of the “culture wars.” It might well be easier for someone who is watching from the outside to see things that are less visible from inside, but the widespread currency of, well, lies, is nothing new in American culture.

    It just is more absurd, in a morbid and truly frightening way now.

    Media has simply become far more proficient at what Chomsky was talking about 25-30 years ago in Manufacturing Consent.

    The desire “towards pragmatism and getting things done” is something I would really like to believe is here, but what I continue to see, well established since Watergate, has simply become more effective.

    I’m not defending the errors, the lies, and the service to wealth all these gross absurdities simply are–I abhor this.

    It is precisely in service to an ideology of manufactured consent this people–called variously astroturf or astroweeds–“argue” for.

    While I would like to believe with you the “transgender” ideology has run its course–and I think I might actually believe this for the world at large, though not the university where I will spend the next few years, I have difficulties doing so.

    My hope is not enough to do so.

    This “transgender” ideology is embodied in the very language that permeates most discussion of these issues. The category errors between SEX and GENDER, post-Butler, that even affect my own language when I relax.

    I’m not sure this is so very different from the process whereby “consent” is manufactured to so many of the lies that have been current for so long.

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