pink frock and jacket at Winterfest

My two cents' worth

scribblings from Facebook, Flickr, and other odd media

Jan 2011:

I passed along an interesting take on past prejudice, from the local Sun tabloid - A German Jewish leader has gently said that, despite respect for Holocaust victims, it's time to move on. So, to paraphase his statement, may I suggest that: The role of the victim is not enough - transgender is much, much more. On the one hand, it's nice to see how some of my friends are doing with this trans thing, but on the other hand, it's kind of scary to see how solipsistic one can get when so deeply involved in this special-interest group! Power to all you folks, but remember that nobody cisgendered can relate to our ways, needs, and interests, and NEITHER SHOULD THEY! We do this for ourselves, first and foremost - however, there's nothing more boring than hearing about another's unhappy times. Think and speak of the good ones; our gender variance is empowering, liberating, and positive, just a bit more of an adventure in the middle of this life we live.

March 2013:

These days, when I show up at events in boy mode, people tease me about "not being pretty today". Sometimes it's a chuckle, sometimes it's "Yes! Another blow against the narrow-minded!" and occasionally, someone calls me Shae and it makes me smile. This is Just Me, and if some redneck-asshole who has no love life starts ragging away on me, then I'll just be sad for him - he'll never know how good things can get, if you make it happen. And ignore him, 'cos I'm having the time of my life. None of this would have happened without trans pals, Milady, Himself, and a real grassroots community awareness of genderqueer reality. Enjoy whoever you are, y'all!

Jan 2014:

My fave homily is that "there are two kinds of people in the world; those who say they can, and those who say they can't - and they're both right".

I just picked up on something just as apropos -

"There are 3 types of people: Those who make things happen, those who watch what happened, and those who wonder WTF just happened..."

July 2014:

Oh yeah - absolutely nobody batted an eyelash at the tranny in their midst during several of the gigs I've attended or performed at. Our "safe" places are great, but do remember, my trans peers, the rest of the world is as much fun. Join in the party, go to a ball game, check out a new restaurant, shop the antique stores, just Get Out There! We're people, not victims.

August 2014:

Canada's National Firearms Association, the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, Responsible Firearms Owners of Alberta, and the National Rifle Association are all outfits I'm a card-carrying member of, and one thing they all hold in common is "Refuse To Be A Victim".

Inasmuch as there's a trend within our trans community towards blaming society for the slings and arrows we're forced to undergo, with concomitant "you gotta listen to me whine about my hard life", I'd like to point out that you're only a victim if you choose to be. I find it difficult to lend credence to this "don't use the word 'tranny', it makes me feel bad about myself". After all, most of us are ambulatory and healthy, with more than a smattering of brain cells, so, really, folks, if you lay trips on me for not sympathizing about perceived past injustices, then I'll definitely give you something to cry about.

Running out of patience with the Politically Correct ultra-minority!

Nov 2014:

...the Transgender Day Of Remembrance vigil: Mickey from the Pride Centre of Edmonton ran a good show; elder Dean Brown gave a short benediction, Jan Buterman commented, Ivan Coyote shared some personal memories of a good transpal, several of us stood and read off the names of this year's trans victims-of-violence, and gentle socializing ensued thereafter - seems that I know several folks in the trans community!

One thing that struck me was how many of these victims were from Brazil and other Latin countries, where certain militarized government officials are in the habit of driving up to a site and using it for machine-gun training - with the transfolk still inside. Some reacted with tears; I'm saddened, angry, and were I to comment overmuch on my own feelings, the government here would take away my guns. Powerless to do anything about it other than get into the front lines (not gonna happen), raise awareness, and be thankful that I live in Canada, where people like us don't have to worry about it. As much...

June 2015:

Events over the first months of 2015 have conspired to make me see myself, more and more, as seriously trans. Yes, without drugs or surgery. It's turning into an interesting ride; thank heaven my people just accept me for who I am. Anyone else doesn't approve? Outta luck!

Still, some fool just remonstrated with my overt lack of sympathy and concomitant lack of "respect" for my trans peers. Let's get it straight: Respect is earned. There's no such thing as a free lunch, so you can get to work on your goals rather than whining. Only headcases pull that sort of nonsense, and they have no credibility because, well, they're crazy.

suicide watch

This isn't the first time I've been accused of promoting suicide in our oh-so-emotionally-fragile dysphoric colleagues. Next time you decide to moan about your sad lot in life, kindly remember there's lots of third-worlders without water, fleeing war, or trying to cross the Mediterranean in crappy boats. Those are real problems. Closer to home, if you're able-bodied, get three squares a day and have a roof over your head, I fail to see your reason for crying. Hell, some trannies even have taxpayer money for the op! Get a job, step away from your filter bubble on social media, make things happen. With all the stuff in the news about Jenner, more people are getting in tune, learning that it`s not right to call us down for being different. Fuck'em if they can`t take a joke and are scared of us - "transphobia" means fear of the transgendered.

Why do most of the womenfolk I spend time with, see transwomen's angst as a strictly male phenomenon? As in, "suck it up, you sissy!" - no, I'm not making this up. Genetic women have it far worse than their trans equivalents, always have since the paternalists dumped the mothers and healers. If a woman rabbits on about this sort of thing, she's a ditz or a headcase, but if a transwoman chirps, we're all supposed to back off and be kinder? Again, whining about one's sad times means you're giving power to being negative. And stop being offended with labels and pronouns; be happy that you're simply accepted! There's worse things to be called than "tranny"; either you get over it, or embrace it, but being offended by the word means you need to lighten up.

On a Crusade!

August 2015:

A discussion on getting out enfemme: Katie Wilson said in Flickr's Just Class group, "Going beats wishing you had! Second chances disappear rapidly..." Very much agree. Carpe diem, always. Excuses I see and hear aren't vaguely acceptable: "Family is staying with me. Life changes keep me from getting out from hiding. A break is as good as a rest."

Yikes! I do understand not wanting to get out, but really, it looks like trannies all hew to the notion that we're here on sufferance, and need to keep perpetuating this notion that being in the closet is a good thing. With Jenner's perambulations through the norteamericano media, we're right on the cusp of a time when we can step out and be accepted. Time to stop hiding - a pal came out to her family at a lake cabin weekend, and had a box of fireworks for after her announcement; the family took it very well, and now this lady has her whole life ahead of her, enfemme as she wants to be!

On the one hand, I've had over a month of doing the yardwork mostly in drab, and afternoons/evenings enfemme, with six days on the range in filth-wear. On the other hand, it's turned into less of a Fun Time than simply someone living their life, in my case being a fashion victim. On the gripping hand (and who here has read Niven?), I find it interesting to see how many people in the world ignore the oddity of a tranny in their midst, choosing instead to interact normally and continue on with their lives. And this is in EDMONTON, redneck capital of Canada, folks! All the trans community's back-patting over recent mainstream media coverage will go for naught if we don't stand up and celebrate, and that does mean overcoming the fear of the naysayers. Bob Marley said it well: "You never know how strong you are, until being strong is the only choice you have."

Judging from the tone of most commentary, I'd say most of us white, male, middle-class, middle-aged trannies are far more interested in keeping what privileges we've earned - and power to you all! Still, inaction in the face of this cultural bullying lets future generations of crossdressers continue with shame and fear that they don't deserve. I heartily despise bullies, having dealt with far too many as a short kid. You want to leave that as a legacy, your choice. I kinda feel good that so many of my peers give me props over doing what I damn-well-please, and no hiding about it, and even better when I see them getting out, finding their space, and doing things they never thought about!

Understand, there's more and more young folks doing the gender-fluid thing, males successfully playing good rocker-girls and party animals as well as some insane drag art, and of course the whole drag-king phenomenon that's intricately tied with gender. Some transition. Some older types like me chase the ring and occasionally make things happen - or have it happen to me. It feels better than watching it on television.

August 2015:

So. A Halloween costume company is selling a Jenner outfit. Looks silly. Now half my pals want me to sign a petition to stop it. Milady sneers at the tranny sissies whining, and I'm highly amused with the situation - it's okay to mock, say, Donald Trump, but 'cos Caitlyn identifies as trans, we're all supposed to bend over backwards to be liberal bleeding hearts. NOT!!! It's what happens to celebrities; they're fair game. I can't agree with any action that reinforces the "poor, poor, pitiful me" mindset; strength comes from within first. Trans lives matter, but not if they're so weak that they suicide after a few bumps in the road - the same ones I encountered in the 70s. It's called evolution, and that's a good thing.

My coping mechanism is not sweating the small stuff, and realizing that it's ALL small stuff. I never got cut any slack for being tiny when I was younger, and I still deal with that. Get overwrought over self-perceived hurtful behaviour? There's more important things to worry about than these white, middle-class first-world "problems". Grow a set of whatever gender's gonads that you want, or the rest of the world will continue to see us as a gang of self-absorbed whiners. Learn how to shoot, volunteer with the disabled, clean up a highway - this helps to make the world a better place.

September 2015:

Comments from two cisgendered, aware and open-minded friends:

"I have no problems with the LGBT-etc alphabet soup, but you need to learn to blend the ingredients better."

"The trans community in entirety is small enough and misunderstood enough as it is. Why spread it to the inside? Has anyone used the term TrannyNazi yet?"

There's getting along with your peers, and there's getting along with the world at large. Both are essential. I hold no truck with transsexuals asserting the only way to be termed "transgender" (or to use the word "tranny") is to take hormones and get surgery; and this is what certain TS-identified locals tell me repeatedly. Folks, I'm entitled to call myself whatever-I-want; I'm out there daily, presenting my fugly tranny self, with a smile and pleasant attitude.

I've seen far too many of our people lose their minds over the drugs, and it's a regular event to have one send me a nasty email denouncing my ways - and then block any answers. Thinking you're better than other transfolk because you've given up a gender is arrogant and unjustified - after all, womenfolk won't see a transwoman as female; at best, most see a curiosity and someone Different, and at worst, "someone who doesn't have a clue what being a woman is". Milady ran into one years ago who blithely told her all about being female; it didn't go over well..

October 2015:

I see some American employers are now giving transsexuals benefits for their transitions. Not a ton of people in one company would need this, so it's not too expensive. I'd still rather the Alberta government didn't get into this; the NDP can't manage money effectively at the best of times. Facial Feminization Surgery, depilation, and breast augmentation all fall under the cosmetic surgery umbrella, and that's definitely NOT something that should be funded. It's surely awful that alcoholics, smokers and the obese are soaking up so much healthcare coin, BUT: there's plenty of hot women who have the same A-cup breast mass as I do, any brow or trach shaving is a personal decision, and hair removal is paid for by thousands of non-trans people every day. Two transwomen in my shooting groups roll their eyes at the new breed of demanders - they paid for all of their own work!

I'm in the enviable position of being in excellent health, mostly by NOT not eating McFood or taking up drugs, smoking or drinking, and staying active. I have one wardrobe, containing bits appropriate to all genders. That's not an issue, as most womenfolk these days dress like guys or in *gag* jammies, capris, or crocs. I and most of my tranny peers look male, only long-haired and far better put-together. I don't hold with being only one-or-the-other, and manage to do my daily life looking like a fugly woman or an obvious male-in-a-frock. As you can expect, when I push the concept of us all being trees in the same forest, ire is raised and feeble catholic guilt trips ensue.

I agree with some who say the government's need for "gatekeeper" professionals such as psychiatrists is an impediment to gender reassignment. However, as with any human endeavour, if you want to upgrade on tax dollars, then you have to spend that time. I see people spending good coin on breast augmentation; at the same time, I worked in hell for a couple of years to upgrade to a very good rifle. Different strokes; my biggest issue with all this is the tunnel vision that says TS needs overarch the greater needs of the community. A good pal's wife needs a liver transplant; she's not whining, milady needs a new hip and toughs it out (wait lists and parts availability) - I feel either of these is more important than taxpayer-funded transitioning. Of course, if this is a serious focus of your life, perhaps you need to consider circumventing the government sponsorship and pay for it all yourself!

Samhain 2015:

Something from Gender Fun's Amnesia Sparkles, a well-known makeover artist.

I perform MTF makeover Transformations and often times the girls get cold feet before coming over to my studio for the first time. Later they book me again and finally make it to my studio for a transformation. They feel terrible for canceling on me but they explain that they experience a great deal of SHAME AND FEAR preventing them from keeping their appointment. Many of my girls have never come out to anyone about their crossdressing. I'm the first person they allow themselves to be their femme self with. I'm honored. I also understand the shame they've felt in the past. BUT I WILL SAY THIS, that "Shame" is not yours to have. That shame is a cultural and societal virus imposed by individuals that are threatened by folk that have the COURAGE to explore all facets of oneself. It takes time to find that courage. As for that "Shame," it has no place in your life ANY MORE! LIVE YOUR LIFE THE WAY YOU WANT TO. Dressing in femme hurts no one.

March 2016:

I always enjoy my friend Bunny Yanak's writing, and I do concur with her points.

Pretty tired of hearing that "my brain doesn't match my body." Or that I "suffer from a birth defect." Because that's supposed to be a better explanation than that maybe our society just needs to stop shoe-horning people into gender identities based only on what is between their legs. Because I guess it's easier for me to just go to the doctor and get myself all cut-up and have my plumbing rearranged to make you more comfortable with me, than it is for you to open your fucking minds. I don't have a birth defect. My brain is just fine with my body. The only thing my brain has a problem with are your simplistic, childish conceptions of sex and gender.

May 2016:

So now the liberal do-gooders of the world are fighting for trans rights too. A plethora of "How To Be A Trans Ally" op-ed pieces list various politically-correct bits of indoctrination for those who can't figure it out. Though most of these writers get one or two points right, such as "Trans is when gender identity doesn't match birth identity", I'd say this empowers teen and twentyish trans people to be rude and insistent about minutiae, while setting back sympathy for our cause. "Offensive" is a reflection of the person offended, not the lack of sensitivity on the speaker. Someone gets a pronoun wrong, walk away, or laugh, or tease them about it.

I could go on and on, but here's my take: Get dressed, get pretty. Now go out, walk, shop, interact with family, friends, even coworkers if that's your thing. Be who you are, hopefully pleasant and friendly. Be prepared for the sub-class of human who will go out of its way to jeer at any person who's Different, and take that abuse and/or praise like a grownup.

Any trans person, and this definitely includes crossdressers and transsexuals, is best served by the attitude that we're "gender enhanced" rather than suffering from malady or delusion. I so despise the term "dysphoric" because it makes what we do seem dysfunctional - and that is simply NOT the case. You don't have to fight for or with us against oppressors, show any sympathy on our "plight" (I call it gender euphoria) or even approve of us - just accept us.

November 2016:

I've avoided any commentary on the Yank political action happening over the last few months. But. Obnoxious liberals are bullying their way into having people who clearly AREN'T homophobic, racist, transphobic, sexist, whatever, do sissy bullshit to avoid offending others. The winner is a goof and too bad he got voted in, but when people get sick of being told what to say and how to think by others, they push back on those who want to establish their superiority by displaying how liberal they are.

When all the non-racist, non-misogynist, non-homophobic, non-bigoted, everyday ordinary people get so sick of you calling them racists, misogynists, homophobes and bigots, that they go out and vote against your candidate, do you: A. Reevaluate your personal conduct and strategy of convincing people to share your politics? - OR - B. Call them racists, misogynists, homophobes and bigots, and yell at them even more?

You still don't get it. You riot, attack people, call them names - all because someone won an election, and you can't see that your behaviour is the reason he got elected. People are tired of you overly-sensitive liberal infants throwing temper tantrums and getting your way. People are tired of BLM being praised when it's just a racist hate movement. People are tired of not being able to say or do anything without someone getting offended and trying to send a lynch mob after them. This affects me directly as a trans person; so many people walk on pins&needles wondering how to address me so as not to offend, they're dying from liberalitis.

Your BS got old real fast and people are finally realizing how bad it got. They didn't want a leader who would bow down to the Politically Correct any more. Blame yourselves for being so insufferably liberal that people saw this as their only option to stop what you started. People aren't racist, or sexist, or whatever other buzzword you want to throw around, they just got sick and tired of the sissification of our society.

February 2017: Distressing realities.

Noting Toronto Pride's kowtowing to BLMTO, a minority contributor, trashing their party last year, it's entirely apparent that left-wing breastbeating (and ensuing polemic) is blinding many to knee-jerk support of untenable policies. A presence at a mainstream event like Pride is a privilege, not a stick to bully others into doing a group's bidding, as these middle-class student activists did.

Yes, police are utterly necessary. I almost hear the "oppressed minorities" with their fear. But seriously, cops are on duty to keep creeps from making things worse. And I see too many commentators carefully ignoring a salient fact: that those who fear cops generally have something illegal to hide. Could be there's a warrant out, could be you're carrying, could be you want to do something nasty. The hullabaloo over shootings mentioned also ignores facts: these deaths were of people committing violent crime or threatening LEOs.

It's just as distressing to see white, cis, heteronormative and privileged youths trashing their amerikkkan world with impunity these days, without the same repercussions, but - overall, the less aggro you get, the less you'll be targeted by the authorites. As a part-aboriginal, trans, laissez-faire Alberta tradesman, MY PRIDE INCLUDES POLICE.

May 2017:

Blaire White just posted on her page: "Every trans person I've met has had some sort of mental illness outside of just being trans that has made it impossible to remain their friend." Within my own circles, I see alcoholism, overuse of X and fentanyl, self-absorption, virtue signaling, and a concerted effort to ignore real-world, mainstream mindset.

I personally feel it's a gang of straight people, with no experience with a drugged body, unaware that if you take any drug, your mind will be affected. Loudmouth Panas, and several other Illusions alumni who went to the dark side, have regularly exhibited exactly these symptoms.

I wish I could sympathize, but all you folks, who have no experience with the harsh realities of drug use, need to be more skeptical of your doctors' advice. I happily admit my years of weed use, and yes, I've tried everything at least once. Drugs change you, and very often not for the better, but you have to constantly be aware that your mental state will be changed because of it!

Alcohol doesn't help? Or the mighty F? Most of the M2F HRT medicines prescribed are synthetic (yes yes, I know about the "natural" ones like what you get from pregnant mares; that has a high risk of user stroke). What I'm getting at is, the side-effects displayed by my trans peers using these drugs are sharply defined and predictable. It hurts to see my pals dropping onto a particular mindset, common with those individuals I recognize as disturbed.

Then again, biological evolution is a slower process than the psychoactive end of things - some interesting sci-fi from Gibson and Sterling illustrates that. There's a cabal of moneymakers pushing any form of "scientific" quackery, but the biggest problem is: nobody can tell you exactly how those drugs interact. All I can go by is watching and doing pattern recognition.

An old spec-fic colleague pointed out the cyclic nature of dependency trends over the last few decades, and indeed I see the present minority-interest claims of victimization (reinforced by politically-correct bullying) and offloading of responsibility to government. Meanwhile the corporate profiteers are laughing every time they look at the bottom line.

September 2017:

I joined in on the local provincial UCP constituency meeting, electing the new board from the Conservative and Wildrose parties. Nobody batted an eye at the tranny in their midst, though Sandra, board director in hot purple heels, took me aside to discuss the present New Democrat GSA and trans policies.

I found we all agree that the government has no business legislating this sort of thing, as parents aren't the close-minded bigots that clueless liberals insist they are. On the flip side, agreed by all, is that it's not the teacher's job to snitch on their students, unless the kids are being disruptive. Perhaps NOT making this silly smokescreen the issue it has become, is the issue.

Lovely being in a room full of people already sick of the nanny state!

November 2017: NPR: New Generation Of Trans

Some tales of racially profiled and alternatively-gendered Americans. I don't have to deal with this very often, and usually it's hillbillies that are offended. Is it because I'm riding on my white male privilege, as I'm so often accused by the entitled, young, militant trannies I keep running into? Or is it my presentation, that of someone who's clearly male but who cleans up fashionably? Or perhaps, that I'm out there, smiling, confident, and happy? I've dealt with bullying all my life, and now, the worst grief I get is from - wait for it - other transpeople, who insist I be angry, unhappy, and wallowing-in-self-pity like them!

Obvious that looking good like this helps us feel good about ourselves. Everyone disses themselves, not giving enough credit, and we all need to be reminded that we are indeed important, and that only we can self-empower - slay the world with the fact that we're boys in frocks, and looking quite proud and lovely doing so. Remember that many women can't be bothered to do the work of prettiness these days, and I'm sure that by 2040 pretty and gender won't at all be congruent.

December 2017:

As Illusions president Rachel Carmina is a convicted child pornographer, I won't be supporting that Edmonton tranny group. The #2, Christy Garland, likes to be offended but rats out other queens. They are ignoring the Illusions Code Of Conduct, allowing members to show up sloppy and ugly, and are giving strength to an antiquated worldview of hiding and staying in the closet as a secret special-interest group. As well, outreach with the rest of the world has dropped to nothing, and the annual Winterfest is a mickey-mouse affair. Edmonton's high-profile trans activists are large men who transitioned after a lifetime of being bullies, left their wives for younger sleeker models, and insist there is only the gender binary, while calmly shredding other transwomens' hopes with a casual "you have no idea how to be a woman!" This is supposed to encourage T-girls to get out and be happy? Three times this year, I've run into self-styled twentyish trans "activists" - confused males railing against the system, refusing to present nicely, insisting their demands be met automatically, and that other transfolk be as unhappy as they are.

When I decided to step out into the trans scene at the turn of the century, I saw enough positive interaction from the locals to get a lot of confidence, and did turn into a happy and secure transgendered individual. And while I still have a lot of contempt for the ongoing media circus, it seems only reasonable to hope that others among us would learn to step out as themselves, without all the drama that's endemic to, well, men emulating women. Funny, though, this isn't happening; there's a staus quo of closeted trannies hiding, with occasional forays into the safe spaces of the Pride Centre and the queer clubs.

"Safe" spaces are a concept I find bogus and less than enabling - the idea that others provide said space - no, one makes one's own, or that space becomes a dead one. Stand up for your legal rights, and show pride. Attend the functions you choose to; and realize that most people don't care how you present, as long as you're not a slob or shaming others. If I'm out of the house and not working, chances are I'm dressed pretty and am interacting with the rest of the world as a proud and attractive transwoman. That includes my shooting clubs, my mainstream political affiliations, and all my day-to-day social interaction - and my peers in those areas are all positive about what I'm doing.

February 2018:

Jordan Peterson on "crucified people" :

“You’re going to have a rough life, just like everybody else. And you’re going to have your fair share of suffering. And you’re going to be touched by malevolence, and that’s going to hurt, and you need something to justify that. You think, ‘Well, what is a noble enough aim so I can suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune and prevail in spite of that?’ That’s what you need. That’s what everybody needs. And maybe you could have it if you just decide what it was. Why not? It’s worth a shot. You don’t have anything better to do.” - an excellent article in the Journal by David Staples!

April 2018:

There's tons of different kinds of crossdressers. There's those who'll be closeted all their lives, others who are happy to post part pix of themselves on the internet, those who present their photos in nice clothes, some who stay bitter and just like to drag others down to their level, and those who actually get out into the universe. Some, like me, thrive on being in public, smiling our faces off and generally taking in what the world has to offer us. I also incite others to get out and have some fun on the town.

Like it or not, being "just a crossdresser" is actually part of the whole movement of being transgendered. Serious spectrum of possibilities, and definitely those who insist they're "women" would look down at those of us who eschew the hormones and surgery. They blather on about "commitment" but still keep themselves insulated from the real world as much as they can. I notice that when I take off the pretty bits and go back to my mundane time in drab, it doesn't go away, and my girl ways stick with me.

Meanwhile, I, as an obvious man-in-a-dress, trot out to symphony events at the Winspear, drag shows at the Yellowhead and the Buck, goth nights at the Starlite and the Mercury Room, techno gigs at the Ortona, Con Hall, and any number of church venues and bars - and, of course, munch down all over town (last few places include Dawaat and Dadeos on Whyte, Brewsters in Oliver Square, the Moose Factory, and the Double Greeting on 96th Street). Nobody gives me grief, the venues happily take my money, and people always compliment me on my heels (full disclosure: I'm a blatant shoe slut).

But even with my own life as a tranny, I still choose to spend my time with people I see as the Good Ones. Way more important than blind loyalty to those of us who are also some variety of trans - it's what kind of person you are, not what position you hold in a microcosm special-interest club, or how much television time you've amassed as an "activist". Most people don't vaguely care! I ran into the city a couple of days ago for band practice, and on the way back stopped for groceries. A couple of shooters I don't see too often stopped to chat (and tell me how good I looked); we talked about our latest toys, a local gun builder who's making quite the name for himself, and how some trannies need to be aware that 99.9% of the population aren't interested in their cause or their hurt feelings. This is the one thing that gets my back up: some pathetic tranny droning on about his sad times. Enough already; that's not interesting to most of the world - any other trans person has already been through that, and has grown up and moved on.

March 2019: Michael Hurd's essay Generation Snowflake: Why It Happened is a brilliant slag on growing up children while being their pals, and aptly shows us what's wrong with today's society.

Accountability is an ethical issue. But it’s also a psychological one. When you go through life never being held accountable, it impairs you psychologically. You might have otherwise been a decent, rational person. But when everyone walks around on eggshells about your feelings — never questioning or challenging you in any way — then it creates an unrealistic bubble around your mind and life.

Some people are more emotional than others. Some are more sensitive than others. We don’t really know why, but that’s how it is. Being more sensitive is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, deeper and more reflective thinkers probably FEEL more too, since feelings arise from thoughts. However, if you create an atmosphere where people are accustomed to assuming all their feelings are valid, and must be paid attention to, merely because they have them, then you consequently create … well, look around you. It’s an aura of shallowness, superficiality, narcissism and self-centeredness that all arises from one thing: The false conviction that feelings are automatically and always valid.

Sadly, we have a real-life laboratory to provide support for my assertion. Going back to the early 1990s, I wrote about the dangers of telling children that their feelings were valid, their feelings represent who they are, and they have a RIGHT to their feelings and emotions above all else. I suggested that if you raise children to believe these things, they will turn into monsters. And isn’t that what we’re seeing today, with Generation Snowflake, the irrational turn to socialism, the whiny and unsustainable turning of everything and everyone into a victim? These are now the normal and to-be-expected cultural, psychological trends — in the younger generation more than anywhere else.

What the hell happened? I wrote about it decades ago. Nobody listened then. Today more are aware of the problem and willing to articulate it. But government schools and parents remain largely paralyzed by the problem. If your kid FEELS something, then it must be so. And if you fail to make it so, then you’re guilty of emotional abuse. Imagine the West having been won with this attitude. Imagine the frontier of America having evolved into the utterly livable, twenty-first century place it is today if most children had been raised to believe their feelings are all that matter. Would we ever have had the automobile, the airplane, the computer technology and advanced state of medicine we know today? Highly doubtful.

So what does that mean for where we are going? Feelings and rational facts are not the same thing. Your feelings do NOT make you special, right or anything in particular. Your feelings are not an achievement. Feelings come from your underlying ideas and beliefs. Those ideas and beliefs are rational or crazy, sustainable or intolerable. It’s up to YOU to figure this out, and to allow others in your life to provide feedback. Otherwise, you’ll end up like so many people today, especially, I’m sorry to say, so many of the younger ones: unaccountable snowflakes.

June 2019:

From Philip Cross, writing for the Financial Post: The ‘anti-fascist’ left were the real fascists all along!.

It is fashionable among the radical left to demonize the growing number of elected conservative governments in the Western world as the rise of the extreme or alt-right. This is most pronounced in the anti-fascist (antifa) movement, particularly on university campuses. However, the anti-fascist movement has a sophomoric misunderstanding of fascism and its location on the political spectrum. More disturbing, this lack of understanding extends to its own social media and even physical tactics that mimic the mob psychology, street rage and bullying that are hallmarks of the fascism they denounce.

Fascism is best thought of as a nationalistic version of socialism, embodied in Hitler’s National Socialist party, which was shortened to the Nazis. Fascist governments like those of Hitler and Italy’s Benito Mussolini (and, to some degree, Spain’s Francisco Franco) in mid-20th century Europe believed in totalitarian control of the economy and oppressive state curtailment of individual liberty. Those are the antitheses of conservative principles. Fascism subsumes all ideology to the goals of the state and the need for state surveillance. The extreme version of conservatism isn’t fascism, as the left wants us to think. It’s libertarianism.

Instead of left and right or liberal versus conservative, a better schema is to locate movements on a spectrum that runs from tyranny to liberty. Fascism embodies many elements of the socialist’s state control of society. For libertarian icon Friedrich Hayek, Hitler’s National Socialism “was indeed socialist in concept and execution,” while H. Pierre Secher, biographer of one of Austria’s leading socialists, Bruno Kreisky, wrote of the striking similarities between the leftists and the fascists in that country: “Ideologically, the distinction between the ‘Sozis’ (Socialists) and Commies on the one hand and Nazis on the other, was probably only the internationalism of the Marxists and the nationalism of the Nazis. In every other respect they agreed on the evils of capitalism.” The connection of Jews with capitalism helped fuel the anti-Semitism of the Nazis.

Mussolini’s claim that in a fascist regime there was to be “everything within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state” is of course the totalitarian opposite of the libertarian ideal. Mussolini was long involved with the socialist movement in Italy, breaking with it because of personal ambition and because his socialist brethren would not support Italy’s entry into the First World War. Once in power, he inaugurated a major extension of welfare spending and public works projects. Mussolini’s insistence that his fascist deputies take seats on the far right of the Italian Constituent Assembly may have led some observers to wrongly conclude that fascism was right wing.

Students have been drawn to the appeal of totalitarian certitude long before political correctness and the antifa movements arrived on campus. When the conservative sociologist Peter Berger, whose family fled Austria from the Nazis, found himself in the midst of a violent, left-wing anti-war demonstration in the 1960s, he said it reminded him “of the stormtroopers that marched through my childhood,” with student protestors adopting from fascists “their anti-intellectualism, their anger, their street theater, their glorification of youth, or their mysticism.” There was also their “mob psychology” and “the militant anti-reason impervious to argument.” These characteristics are all amply evident in today’s campus protests against a fascism they hotly denounce but whose tactics they generously employ.

Off campus, the triumph of religious appeal over reasoned argument today is found in the radical environmental movement, whose early roots were in German fascism. The historian Anna Bramwell, while making the common mistake of conflating conservatism and fascism, nevertheless wrote that “Greenness was seen as an incipiently sinister conservative or even Fascist idea in German thought” going back to Hitler’s support of renewable energy to help reduce Germany’s dependence on oil, in short supply through much of the war. The anti-fossil-fuel movement uses the fascist’s appeal to emotion over reason, demonizing all who dare question it as “climate change deniers.”

Today the rise of extremism is more pronounced and frightening on the left than the right. The demonization of the right as fascism, that therefore forfeits its place to be heard in the public square, employs the strategy developed by the Marxist scholar Herbert Marcuse. One of the progenitors of the so-called New Left in the 1950s, Marcuse maintained that certain views on the right had to be silenced because this freedom of expression was “serving the cause of oppression.” In this line of thought, censorship serves the cause of freedom because intolerance against the right, while indulging extremism from the left, somehow levels the playing field for democratic debate. That absurd notion is at last managing to take hold in many academic and media circles today.

• Philip Cross is the former chief economist at Statistics Canada.

June 2019:

Good points to transwomen from "Louder With Crowder - Wake up, feminists - transgenderism is the patriarchy and war on women", written by Courtney Kirchoff, a feminist genetic woman...

August 2019:

A very sensible look at how the media is using tragedy and lies to push forward anti-gun policy, in spite of real statistical evidence contrary to their claims.

Late August 2019:

2019's Alberta government has withdrawn official support for the ban on queer&trans conversion therapy (which is still a very good idea).

If municipalities and counties are supporting said ban, why insist that the provincial government jump on the bandwagon? Alberta's United Conservative Party has bigger fish to fry than trying to please a politically correct minority. Jobs, resource development, family values, and fewer taxes are Very Important, after the devastation wrought by the "socially conscious" dictatorship of the New Democratic Party, which distiguished itself by its Politically Correct arrogance and more-of-the-same kind of political corruption.

I'm (very) visibly trans, and feel that the less government intervention, the better. I'm entirely welcome everywhere I go, and it's because I refuse to behave like a victim. Act like people, and you'll be accepted. Whine about your "hard life" and the great majority will tune you out.

September 2019:

No, feelings aren't the issue in healthcare. Just because some think they learned that "feelings matter" in school, doesn't mean that anyone performing health services is obliged to wrap them in marshmallows to keep them from pouting. And mental health? There's a whole quack industry catering to Feels, but when a shrink or therapist says to ignore the naysayers, then that's good advice. Feelings DON'T matter. Life in the real world is a daily game of "suck it up and carry on." Anything else is just promoting mediocrity, a huge problem with the alphabet-soup brigade. You want to be a victim, your choice - it doesn't work for me, and the cis world isn't obliged to bend over backwards to pay homage to pronouns.

But, what would I know? Decades of experience living the trans life has me spreading good cheer everywhere - except for the whiners (i.e., Panas, Shostak, and Garland) who actually enjoy being a victim. No apologies; this is the real world, and the precious, precarious, tiny trans minority won't be changing it too soon, other than by guiltless one-on-one outreach. Those who get bent out of shape over pronouns have abdicated their duty to get along with the Real World. Trans and nonbinary people are due nothing more than the common respect that every human is entitled to. Obviously my tiny opinion won't change any of the upcoming queer&trans youth; sad to see how so many make their own lives so much harder than needful.

This sort of activism has a lot to do with how people see us. Be strong and don't claim hurt feelings; most people don't care, and neither should they.


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"Decadence has been given a bad name throughout history. The truth is, there is never a better era in which to be alive than a decadent one. The food is good, the liquor flows, women are usually willing, and somebody else is fighting the wars. It's invariably the next generation that has to pick up the bill." - Jack McDevitt