If you can choose your own gender, why not race?
Rachel Dolezal Photo: Anthony Quintano/NBC News/AP via National Post
The state of Delaware is poised to adopt what is known as “Regulation 225.” Approved both by the Delaware State Education Association and Gov. John Carney, Regulation 225 would safeguard children’s “protected characteristics,” such as gender, age, race, sexual orientation and gender identity. Section 7.4(1) of 225’s Prohibition of Discrimination Code states, “All students enrolled in a Delaware public school may self-identify gender or race, which is maintained in the school.”
Gender isn’t news. But race? Are they really going there? Yes, they apparently are.
Too late for Rachel Dolezal, alas. Remember her? The Spokane, Wash., native became a media sensation in 2015 when she was outed as a white woman passing as black. Dolezal looked the part, with her dark skin and Afro-style hair. Come to think, in Delaware I guess nobody can say she was “passing” anymore. Dolezal identifies as “transracial” — that is, she believes she “is” black, and that belief would have been affirmed if she were a Delaware student today.
Dolezal claimed her identity was a direct analogy to that of a transgender person. She even compared herself to Caitlyn Jenner, who had transitioned around the same time as her story broke. As she said in an interview, “Gender is understood — we’ve progressed, we’ve evolved to understanding that gender is not binary. It’s not even biological. But what strikes me as so odd is that race isn’t biological either.”
On the face of it, that’s perfectly logical. If gender isn’t biologically linked, and it’s all about how you feel, then why not race? Trouble is of course, gender is linked to biology. Yes, gender dysphoria is a rare but real phenomenon. But the notion that gender is fluid, widespread and harmless is a theory promulgated by transactivists posing as scholars, and the theory has been bought as settled science by progressive pedagogues. Also bought by Dolezal, a woman sadly afflicted with an idiopathic dysphoria.
Viciously derided for “cultural appropriation” and “white privilege,” Dolezal calmly stuck to her guns. I felt a sneaking admiration for her, because her reasoning hoisted transgender theorists with their own petard. Of course black people were offended by her assertions, rightly so. But so are many lesbians and gay men offended by transactivists. They don’t feel the least bit gender fluid and they resist co-optation of their biology-based identities.
I have a chicken-and-egg theory about the whole trans phenomenon we are witnessing. It only took off in a big way when the chemical means became available to artificially mimic the opposite sex in self-presentation. In other words, the notion that one was born in the wrong body only became a social contagion when the look of the assumed identity could be approximated via medication. Certainly there were true gender dysphorics before the age of hormonal therapy, but they were stuck in their birth bodies. That’s not the case today. Chicken, egg.
Big Pharma must be pretty pleased with this upward trend, since kids who present as trans and are encouraged to transition will spend a lifetime on hormones. That’s nice for pharmaceutical companies specializing in hormones. At the moment, there isn’t a hormone for skin darkening. But what if there was? If I were an amoral Big Pharma executive, I would be asking myself what it would take to create a race “chicken,” a hormone-like easy-popping substance that turned your skin dark and kept it dark as long as you kept popping it. And one that, unlike cross-hormones, didn’t render you sterile.
There would be a huge market for these drugs. White students are now being taught from first youth that white is the skin pigment of oppression. Imagine all that guilt lifted with a daily pill.
In other pedagogically related news, Georgian College in Barrie, Ont., has cancelled a proposed three-year diploma homeopathy program following a wave of outrage by critics. Homeopathy is a form of treatment for medical conditions based on the theory of “like cures like”: that the substance causing an illness in healthy people, when massively diluted, will eliminate the same symptoms in sick people. There is no scientific basis or proof for this theory, and medical professionals ascribe homeopathic successes to the placebo effect.
Contemptuous criticisms of the proposed program by real scientists included rhetoric like “quackery,” “magical thinking” and “pseudo-science.” It would be nice to see more such triumphs of science over dogma.
Barbara Kay is a columnist for Canada's National Post, where this article first appeared. It is republished with permission.
• Email: [email protected] | Twitter: • @BarbaraRKay
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