Sunday, 1 November 2015

Why feminists like Sarkeesian and kin really get on my nerves

To not have heard anything about Anita Sarkeesian, Zoe Quinn and other self-professed feminists the past years, one must have lived underneath one serious rock. Amidst unsubstantiated claims of sexism in video games, broad-ranging fraud in gaming journalism and the (in)famous quote by Sarkeesian that 'everything is sexist, you just got to keep pointing it out', a surge of so-called '3rd-wave feminism' took hold of the world.

What this essentially came down to was media report after media report of gang rapes on university campuses, of women being only paid a pittance at work compared to their male colleagues while having to suffer constant sexual harassment. Of women only being used as objects in movies, video games and accusations of young boys being 'programmed' this way to become abusive, objectifying monsters themselves when they grew up.

Most of this was quite familiar to many people already, at least those who had been around during the late 90s when the now infamous lawyer Jack Thompson made it his campaign to point out that everything in video games was about violence and that this was the explanation behind the (non-existing) rise in real-life violence, including the Columbine mass-shooting which supposedly was 'caused' by the video game 'Doom'.

Thompson's range of lawsuits and basic premise was soon to be found to be without any merit whatsoever, with study after study finding no link between violent video games and real-life violence. In fact, around the time that the first 3D first-person shooters were being introduced in the US, the crime statistics show a sharp drop-off in violent crimes. Ultimately Thompson was kicked out of the lawyer profession and faded away into obscurity.

Fast-forward to 2014 and we got Sarkeesian and others loudly proclaiming that it is 'proven' that sexism and sexual violence in video games teach boys and men to be sexist and violent towards women in real life as well. Sounds familiar? It should be, because it's the same song and dance all over again, only this time the main character is a woman and not a lawyer. Cue the 'must protect all women' politically correct memes.

After collecting over half a million dollars in donations and getting invited to the United Nations to propose legislation which would make it basically illegal to disagree with a woman/feminist on 'anti-harassment' grounds, those of us who are not part of Sarkeesian's army of loyal feminists and social justice warriors now are expected to go along with this, or risk being accused to 'harassment', 'rape threats', 'internalised misogyny' and 'supporting the patriarchy'.

Frankly it's all such an immense pile of hogwash, it is astounding that the world plus dog have gone along in it for so long. Or at least the mass media has, reporting on each accusation uttered by Sarkeesian et al. as if it is part of the Holy Gospel itself. Some have already jokingly begun to refer to Sarkeesian as the Pope of the Church of Feminism.

Now, let's wind back a bit. First of all, let's see what Sarkeesian and yours truly have in common. We are both white women. We were both raised in a rich, Western country. Both of us have been provided with virtually every opportunity imaginable. And yet Sarkeesian is claiming that she receives constant harassment and abuse from men, and that women in general in Western society are being oppressed, objectified and have little say in their future.

I cannot say that I share this opinion at all. In fact, I have a view on this issue which Sarkeesian doesn't and likely never will have, thanks to the things we do not have in common. I was namely not born as a regular woman, but as an intersex - specifically a hermaphrodite - woman and due to this spent the first two decades of my life thinking that I was male, due to my body's physiology and my environment.

Basically I am supposed to have experienced the 'male privilege' people like Sarkeesian claim exist and which women do not have access to. If this exists, I am not sure what it would be. I was bullied, harassed, beaten up and had to defend myself against bullies despite supposedly being part of the 'patriarchy'. I went through primary and high school being lonely and feeling different, ultimately finding out about my own giftedness.

Being gifted is a terrible curse and gift. Society doesn't understand it and the amount of cruel jokes, misunderstandings and outright abuse you receive as a result of it is astounding. All that you are theoretically capable of is mostly wasted on trying to deal with a society which is primitive, flawed and ignorant. It doesn't feel like you truly belong on the same planet as the people around you, but were transported there from the future or some advanced alien society.

Later I also found out that I had never been male, but am this intersex female. A hermaphrodite. If I thought before that being gifted was hard to live with, being openly intersex quickly made me reconsider that notion.

I learned about the horrific world of genital mutilation being forced upon intersex infants in so-called 'normalisation' surgeries, medical records being kept hidden from the victims of these practices, and a general approach towards exterminating every trace of intersex individuals, even classifying intersex as a disorder, with the term 'Disorder of Sex Development' (DSD).

For myself, I was brainwashed, made to believe that I had to be transsexual, go along with the whole transsexual protocol and undergo genital mutilation so that every trace of my intersex condition could be removed. I would be 'cured' at that point. I am pretty sure that is the standard approach among psychologists and physicians towards intersex cases. It is the reason why I fled my country of birth, to escape this level of persecution which saw me unable to get proper medical help for my condition.

As a result I suffered severe Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), along with a host of other traumatic disorders, as I began to suffer medical complications as a result of my untreated intersex condition. At this point I am still looking for medical help.

Did I mention that I have also been living as a woman for the past eleven years or so, the past three officially, even?

Being a woman never was a problem. Sure, I had to learn how to deal with (heterosexual) men, as due to my lack of a real puberty I was left completely naive and wholly unprepared for male attention. True, I did get raped back in 2006, but I would not put that on 'being a woman'. On that issue I blame being intersex and the largest 'gender team' in the Netherlands mistreating my case in every way possible, reducing me to an uncertain shell of a human being, looking for just someone to give some attention. On that count my hatred is fully directed towards the pig-faced bastard who did this to me, as well as those Dutch medical 'specialists'.

So no, being a woman never was a problem or issue. Being gifted and intersex most definitely were, though. It makes sense in a sick kind of way as well: men and women are normal in society, after all, while gifted and intersex people are seen as 'freaks' and not quite 'normal' humans. With doctors teaching (prospective) parents to see intersex children as being the victims of a birth defect, tragedy is unavoidable. Have fun randomly assigning a physical sex.

And gifted children? Child prodigies often burn out at an early age, never fitting well into society. Most others prefer to withdraw from the same society which harassed and bullied them and later simply refused to understand them. It is mostly just a lonely existence.

Returning to these self-professed, 3rd-wave, radical feminist types like this Anita Sarkeesian, I would thus like to in summary proclaim them to be a collection of self-absorbed, delusional and very pathetic whiners. They like to imagine a world in which their existence is required, where they can feel validated, even if it is at the cost of those women who do not wish to go along with their ideology, not to mention society in general.

I would never call myself a feminist. I proudly proclaim myself to be a humanist, for I do not discriminate. To me each person's suffering is equal. As I type this, both men and women are being oppressed in the cruel, Shari'a-ruled country of Saudi-Arabia. In Thailand young girls and boys are being raped in brothels by mostly Western tourists. In oligarchies like the US a small elite remain unfathomably rich at the cost of everyone else.

I am a strong believer in giving everyone an equal start and opportunities in life. One's accident of birth should be no ground for determining in any way or form what one can or cannot become in life. I believe in self-determination: full control over one's own life and body. I am vehemently against non-critical, non-medical surgeries on babies, infants and others who cannot make a decision about it themselves. I could not care in the slightest what the gender, sex, sexual-orientation, skin-colour, religion or favourite colour or food is of the person in question.

And Sarkeesian et al.? They would like to prosecute everyone online who disagrees with them, because mean messages on Twitter give them 'PTSD'. They're not victims. They just play one on TV.



井上エイド said...

I had to Google both of these names to learn who they are.

Makes me glad I live in Japan. I don't know who Kim Kardashian (now do most other Japanese) is either.

I'm sure they hate people like me. Oh well.

井上エイド said...

Reading their Wikipedia bios more carefully, I think I know why you know them and not me: you're a gamer (and are in the industry), and I'm not. I guess people who are in the English world and are gamers know who they are.

To be honest, I don't even know the different sides of "GamerGate". All I know is it was a popular search keyword for a while.

My level of gaming is limited to "casual gaming", meaning that I'll download a game on my smartphone to play only on the train for 5 minutes a weeks tops (if that), and it will be the very first thing to delete when my home screen gets cluttered.

Maya Posch said...

@井上エイド: Yeah, I imagine it's not something people outside gamers and radical feminists will be very familiar with, beyond the media portraying 'GamerGate' as yet another type of 'proof' that gamers are anti-social, aggressive men/people, I guess.

Fortunately these 'feminists' driving the hype are beginning to lose their influence, so hopefully they'll soon be just another overhyped news item we can forget about :)

In Japan the gamer culture is also very different from in the US and EU, so I can imagine that the effect of these accusations of 'sexism' in games and all that have been far less. Japanese games are after all known for their wide range of extremes. Only Japanese game I am aware of which got targeted by Sarkeesian and others was Bayonetta (1 and 2), for being 'sexist', even though the character is created by a female designer.

So yeah, don't get too bothered by not knowing much about GamerGate. Gods willing it will be all over with soon anyway :)