Campus Free Speech

Activists Demand Firing of Feminist Grad Student for Criticizing the Transgender Movement

UC–Santa Barbara's Title IX office is "aware of this matter and actively engaged in a response."

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Some students and alumni of the University of California–Santa Barbara want the administration to fire Laura Tanner, a graduate student in the Department of Feminist Studies who has attracted the ire of the trans community.

Tanner, a self-described "radical feminist," is at odds with what many progressives now believe about gender. "A woman is a person with a female body and any personality, not a female personality and any body," her Twitter banner reads. "Any other definition is sexism." The criticism of Tanner is directed mostly at her Twitter account. The Daily Nexus recently compiled a list of transphobic tweets she has sent.

It's not clear that Tanner voices these opinions in her classroom—and even if she did, they would be protected by the principle of academic freedom. Nevertheless, many students have launched a campaign to get Tanner fired. A statement posted by several dozen students and alumni claims that UC–Santa Barbara is an unsafe campus and that the administration is complicit in violence against trans people so long as Tanner has a job.

The administration is monitoring these concerns, according to The College Fix, which reports that the university's Title IX coordinator, Ariana Alvarez, is "actively engaged in a response." (The Title IX office handles gender-based discrimination complaints on campus.) Alvarez did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Unless some evidence emerges that Tanner is discriminating against trans students, the mere fact that she holds opinions with which they disagree should not merit any action on the administration's part. Trans-exclusionary radical feminism (often derisively abbreviated as "TERF") is undoubtedly losing ground among progressive activists, but the dialogue about gender norms among self-described feminists will not be improved by cracking down on academic speech.

For more on leftist infighting over gender and sexuality issues, check out my new book, Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump, which devotes a chapter to the subject.

NEXT: Trump Says Congresswomen He Told to 'Go Back' to Countries They 'Originally Came From' Should 'Apologize to Our Country'

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  1. A woman is a person with a female body and any personality, not a female personality and any body,” her Twitter banner reads. “Any other definition is sexism.”

    Feminists are discovering just how dismissive the transgender movement is of womanhood and that there is a strong element of sexism built into it.

    1. Strong element? It’s nothing but sexism!

      1. Your talking feminism, right?

    2. I wonder how many lesbians and heterosexual males have ever thought, “I can’t wait to go home and blow my girlfriend.”

      1. The fact that they don’t think that is evidence of their transphobia. Or so I’ve been told.

      2. I’m one.

    3. Whenever anything starts with ‘activists demand…’ can we just deploy a squad of Pinkerton to savagely bear the activists? That would solve a lot of problems and teach those dirty hippies their place.

    4. Exactly. The transgender movement says that gender is somehow a “state of mind”, thereby endorsing the idea that the “feminine mind” is marked by distinct characteristics. It’s insulting to women.

  2. the university’s Title IX coordinator, Ariana Alvarez, is “actively engaged in a response.” […] Alvarez did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Well, then Ms Alvarez isn’t actively engaged in a response.

  3. Describing someone’s argument as “transphobic” because transgender activists disagree with it is begging the question and taking a side on the issue. It is an unprofessional use of language.

    1. If you call it transphobic, you don’t need to come up with any counterarguments. One word does it all.

      1. –phobic is the wrong structure for many things.

      2. I am transphobic because I don’t like trans fats in my diet.

        1. Only if you have an extreme or irrational fear of trans fats. Because you know, that’s actually the definition of being “phobic” 😀

          1. Well, transfats, actually all fats, are hydrophobic. So it serves them right.

            1. They have rabies?

          2. Isn’t a transfat a skinny person who thinks they’re fat?

        2. Afraid of the consequences of transwarp drove. So I too am transphobic

          1. But how else is Voyager supposed to make it back from the Delta quadrant? You don’t think Janeway was justified in breaking the Temporal Prime Directive? What kind of Libertarian bare you?

    2. Yes, I wish Robby wouldn’t give away the store like that.

    3. Describing someone’s argument as “transphobic” because transgender activists disagree with it is begging the question and taking a side on the issue. It is an unprofessional use of language.

      But it’s their whole strategy. Skip the whole argument/discussion about what the phenomenon of transgender actually is and how it should be treated and impose one fairly radical view by force if necessary.

      1. The point Is that Robby shouldn’t play along like he did here

        1. Robby? Play along with progressive gender-fascistic nonsense? Say it ain’t so!

  4. Trans-exclusionary radical feminism (often derisively abbreviated as “TERF”) is undoubtedly losing ground among progressive activists

    TERF is losing ground among progressives because trans activists (who are mostly M-to-F trans) have so far succeeded in making “my-gender-is-whatever-I-say-it-is” a tenet of progressivism. The TERF-ists have been defined into the cornfield.

    1. The TERF-ists have been defined into the cornfield.

      Good riddance to outmaneuvered postmodernists.

    2. Children of the Corn… They always come back scarier.

    3. It almost seems as if Robby is happy about that outcome. I’m not sure it is desirable.

      1. Other than much enjoyed shadenfraude.

      2. I say the more energy they spend attaching each other the better.

    4. What are the TERFs going to do about it, after all? Vote Republican?

  5. “transphobic” isn’t a thing.

    1. I’m uncomfortable with “3 on the tree”. I think that’s transphobic.

      1. The unnatural fear of column shifters.

      2. No, that is just using common sense. 3 on the tree are just abominations.

      3. Well, it’s terrible for gas mileage.

  6. …the Department of Feminist Studies

    Let the internecine feeding frenzy continue. Popcorn please.

    1. *hands everyone edged weapons*

      First Topic: The part of 007 going forward will be played by Lashana Lynch. And… GO!

      1. I thought it was Haile Bailey?

        1. I thought it was Haile Bailey?

          YOUR ISSUE ISN’T TRANSGENDER ENOUGH!

          *Throws popcorn*

      2. First they destroy Doctor Who, and now this.

        1. Truth be known, 007 disappeared after the second movie. The socialists could not stand the cold war “Russia is the enemy” main point of 007’s existence, and invented SPECTRE to look like a corporation to be the enemy.
          The really amusing part is that NOW the socialists are all about “Russia is the enemy” because Trump.
          (This statement has been reviewed and approved by the Ministry of Truth)

        2. First they destroy Doctor Who, and now this.

          At this point it seems well within the realm of possibility Idris Elba does a cameo and she hands him her beer.

          1. Honest question: is I this Elba the go to character now for casting a black male in a traditionally white male role? Heimdall, Roland Deschain, suggested for James Bond.

            1. Replacing Samuel L. Jackson.

            2. When they make a biopic about Elba’s life, the role should go to an albino.

            3. Most of those are just revisionist, but Roland’s race (white) is actually integral to the story as Stephen King wrote it…

          2. Idris Elba would’ve been an awesome Bond

            1. Nope.

              To be consistent with Lefty Logic, Idris Elba CANNOT be Bond as that reinforces the colonialist mindset of the Anglos over the minority Scots…

        3. Since the previous Bond movie kind of played the twist of Austin Powers 3 straight…that already happened.

      3. She can only be an improvement on the Daniel Craig Bond films all of which have been duller than a 10 hour lecture on the history of beige paint.

        Boring villains, boring Bond, boring action. With Lashana we might get lesbian Bond…

      4. Honest question, will we she be getting Bond babes? And if so can we make it at least NC17 rating?

        1. On second thought after seeing who she is, I’ll settle for G rating.

      5. Well, the way the movies have handled(ignored) the transitions between Bond actors leaves the inference open that not just 007, but “James Bond” as well is a code name. From what I understand, the books aren’t like that, but for people who only know James Bond from the movies it’s a logical conclusion.

  7. Dept of Feminist Studies, seriously? You be who ever you want to be, but leave me out of it.

    1. Doesn’t Title IX demand that there is a Department of Masculine Studies as well?

      1. Hahahaha.
        But seriously.

      2. Probably, but the men who would demand it actually have shit to do.

      3. Isn’t that the engineering dept?

        1. But but women in STEM!

      4. Doesn’t Title IX demand that there is a Department of Masculine Studies as well?

        Sandusky’s program at Beaver Stadium doesn’t count, right?

      5. There is. Unfortunately, it’s staffed by the Department of Feminist Studies. They took it upon themselves. I mean, who better to have something to say about masculinity than them, amiright?

    2. Guys, call back the SWAT team that was sent to this guys house to force him to enroll in Feminist Studies. We’ll have to find someone else.

  8. I would like to tell Ms Tanner i am with her, but I would probably be accused of mansplaining and being toxic

    1. And phobic.

  9. “Trans-exclusionary radical feminism (often derisively abbreviated as “TERF”) is undoubtedly losing ground among progressive activists, but the dialogue about gender norms among self-described feminists will not be improved by cracking down on academic speech.”

    The chances for dialogues are about as good as the chances of dialogue between Jacobins and Girondins, Bolsheviks and Mensheviks.

    The so-called TERFS are the Mensheviks and Girondins. They won’t be able to hold on much longer.

    1. The Menshevik revolution is always killed off by the Bolshevik revolution.

    2. Or between Mangalores and Mondoshawan.

      1. Yes, but unlike the Mangalores, the Bolsheviks WILL fight without a leader…

  10. …the mere fact that she holds opinions with which they disagree should not merit any action on the administration’s part.

    So we’re just supposed to ignore her violent Twitter banner.

  11. The premise of TERFism seems to be that women are inherently different (and superior) to other genders and you can’t just become one because it kinda undermines their whole movement – they have a lot in common with white nationalists here.

    1. Sometimes, not always. But I predicted this when the transgender thing first started to rear its head probably back in 2014– that it would decimate the identity politics industry and cause massive infighting due to “womanhood” becoming essentially meaningless.

      Some TERFs simply assert that there’s something unique to womanhood, and that womanhood isn’t something you merely “dress up in” before heading out of the house. And they’re right. There’s always a temptation to see certain groups get the logical conclusion of their own rhetoric thrown back in their faces, but there’s a potential for real cultural damage here.

      1. This too shall pass. In few decades this whole thing will be put down the memory hole. As for the people whose careers were ruined for speaking the obvious truth and for the children who have been bullied into mutilating themselves, well that will just be bad luck or the fault of the evil right for not being accepting enough. Same as it always was.

        1. Don’t worry: Democrats and progressives will do what they always do and proclaim that “the parties switched sides” and that it all was really the fault of Republicans!

    2. It’s more than that. It’s also the assumption behind transgenderism that there are thoughts, feelings, and behavioral patterns that are permissible and comfortable only for a man or only for a woman, and therefore it should be expected and sympathized with that someone suffering from the “wrong” thoughts and feelings for their sex would want to change their physical presentation to match the “correct” sex. That assumption was previously known as “sexism”, although in the past before “sex changes” were available, the sexists tried to force the suffering individuals to change their thoughts and feelings to match their bodies, rather than the other way around. The non-sexist view is that one should be allowed to, and should feel good about, having any thoughts and feelings they wish, and doing anything they wish, whether they are a man or a woman. As Tanner put it, “A woman is a person with a female body and any personality…”. Transgenderism is not just sexist, it is sexism itself in a new package.

      1. So methodical. Now, replace the word “gender” (and “sex” too, for the sake of brevity) in your post with the word “species”, so “sexist” becomes “speciesist” and replace “man” or “woman” with “dog” or “cat”, and voila’, you have clear-cut mental illness! Now please mansplain (femsplain? transplain? cisplain?) to me how one is different from the other, and why it’s ok to allow folks in one instance to mutilate themselves and not in other instances. BTW, “because they can find doctors willing to perform such procedures” is not an answer.

        1. Did you actually read my post before responding? It’s like you’re arguing with someone else.

  12. “Unless some evidence emerges that Tanner is discriminating against trans students, the mere fact that she holds opinions with which they disagree should not merit any action on the administration’s part

    But we all know how that’s going to go.

  13. (image in my head of Palpatine gleefully watching the ‘radical’ feminists and trans-maniacs devouring each other). “Yes, yes, let the hate flow through you!”

    1. Definitely Palpatine, but more when he betrayed Count Dooku. Feminist are Dooku and progressives are Palpatine. Tranny’s are Anakin (fitting because Anakin was a whiny bitch in Revenge of the Sith).

  14. “…the mere fact that she holds opinions with which they disagree should not merit any action on the administration’s part.”

    You are new here, aren’t you.
    Or you have not been paying attention at all.

    The sole purpose (now) of a college administration is to destroy individuals at the behest of the mob. Note that the mob does not have to be upset about the same thing each time, just loud in social media.

  15. Our schools have worked so hard to “domesticate” boys into girls, that most trans people are M to F. Boys are ashamed to be boys – they are toxic, after all. So becoming a women-thing is preferable.

    1. most trans people are M to F

      Is that true? Most trans people that I have personally encountered have been F-M. But of course that’s just my experience.
      I wonder M-F are just more obvious. Women dressing like men is a lot more socially normal than men dressing like women.

      1. There are a mountain of f-to- something (M, non-binary, genderfluid, etc.) transtrenders, but very few actual ftm transsexuals. In the T community the difference is stark.

        1. A lot of that could be that the results of physically “transitioning” are typically so poor for ftm transsexuals. As difficult and unlikely as it is for a mtf to achieve a convincingly female appearance, the results for ftm’s are usually tragically comic. Giving male hormones to a young woman does not often make her look like a man; instead it makes her resemble a pubescent boy. And surgeons are still unable to create anything like a functioning penis.

          1. Not true! I believe surgeons created Chuck Shumer. Yes, I got there first!!

            1. Goal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          2. Actually, looks-wise F-to-M can often be quite convincing: beards, body hair, male pattern baldness, lower voice, disappearing breasts, more muscle mass. But the only way you get a functioning penis is if you’re born with it and stay healthy.

            1. It can happen, just as some few men are able to convincingly portray women, but in my experience, ftm’s more often end up looking like teenage boys.

              1. Or twinks.

        2. I read that FtM tracks, especially with puberty blockers, very closely with female autists.

          Now just think about that for a bit and understand the full implications of it. It is tragic how they are being medically treated.

          1. I’m tempted to say it goes both ways, but that might be a sampling error on my part. Many of the MtF transfolk I know are on the spectrum, but I’m in the hacker scene, and many of the people in the hacker scene are *also* on the spectrum.

    2. Women embrace sexual discrimination against men.

      Just like blacks embrace racial discrimination against whites.

      Both groups nurse the huge chips on their shoulders and couldn’t care less about the suffering they cause. It brings them joy.

      Affirmative action.

      1. Both groups nurse the huge chips on their shoulders

        Activists do anyway. I have hope for normal people.

        1. The “normal” people are further divided into “apathetic” or “tolerant” and “concerned”.

          In my experience most people have been brow beaten to “tolerate” in other words “be apathetic” about the wrong directions our society takes.

          We can’t count on them. They need deprogramming before they can value truth.

          Concerned rational people are left to count on. Learn to recognize them and take every opportunity to identify yourself as one.

        2. That’s “normies” to you.

  16. Feminist learns that you reap what you sow.

  17. “The Daily Nexus recently compiled a list of transphobic tweets she has sent.” I saw this sentence at the end of the second paragraph, and I have no idea what it means.

    By “transphobic”, does that mean she is afraid of trans people? Does it mean that she is afraid of becoming a trans person? Does it mean that she does not believe that a transgender identity is not a genuine physical condition?

    “Transphobic” is a word that gets thrown around quite liberally by some. Does it have the same meaning every time?

    1. The purpose of the word is to make disagreeing with whatever notion is put forward by transgender activists unthinkable. It is pure propaganda.

      1. Actually it’s used in one of three ways, your take is actually the LEAST negative version:

        1) By people SLANDERING others by claiming they have a diagnosable mental disorder (i.e. a ‘phobia’) while KNOWING the individual has NO such condition.

        2) By BIGOTS who actually believe the individual has a diagnosable mental disorder (i.e. a ‘phobia’) and that said individual should be ridiculed or treated negatively because of it.

        3) By people trying to shut down the argument.

        Regardless, its incredibly immoral…

    2. “Transphobic” is a word that gets thrown around quite liberally by some. Does it have the same meaning every time?

      From my understanding, the meaning is the same by the people who use the term: You’re ‘anti-trans’ in some way or form. To the people BEING anti-trans (more accurately, being accused of being anti-trans), that could be manifested in dozens of ways.

      You hate or don’t like ‘trans’ people. You don’t accept that trans is a valid concept; or you dismiss anyone as ‘trans’ as ‘mentally ill’. You want to keep them from using the bathroom of their choice. You have a genuine fear of trans people, putting the ‘phobia’ in the linguistically correct context. You believe that they are in some way deviant and prone to various sexual crimes such as pedophilia. And lastly, you believe that a man that “identifies” as a woman isn’t a woman– while holding no specific opinions or phobias to the incredibly small percentage of the population that suffers from Gender Dysphoria. I’m sure there are several dozen I haven’t mentioned.

    3. Stop letting the mental patients define your concerns.

      Every sexuality other than heterosexuality is either a choice or a disorder. None from that community admits that it’s a choice, leaving only disorder.

      We’ve all seen them flip flop between sexuality’s.

      So yeah, if you don’t want to have the disorder, they say you’re phobic.

      To that I say, fuck you, I choose for myself and will not be apathetic, tolerant, toward the issue.

  18. He also gets “TERF” wrong. The “F” stands for “feminist,” and it’s a slur directed at people, not an idea. Trans activists routinely call for violence against “TERFs,” meaning anyone who won’t toe the line.

    1. I’m pretty sure both uses (to refer to the ideology and it’s practitioners) are common.

  19. Is a graduate degree in feminist studies one of those things everyone else gets to pay for?

  20. An “Feminist studies” program is pseudo-intellectual bullshit in the first place, so I can’t really get too upset about anyone getting kicked of it because of backbiting from the other lunatics in the asylum.

    -jcr

  21. A woman is a person with a female body and any personality, not a female personality and any body. Any other definition is sexism.”

    It’s a theory. But as with so many other of the things everyone bitches about, this is about the definition of words. It’s hysteria over semantics. Aren’t there real problems?

    “Woman” is the word in dispute. If the grad student is refusing to address a trans people in the manner he, she, or they prefers or prefer, that’s just rude.

    But why should anyone care about which dictionary she prefers? I like M-W, but if someone else likes the Radical Feminist Dictionary and Castration Manual, it’s a free country. Languages evolve, and people have disagreements when it does.

    1. I demand you start addressing me as Jarl Ragnar Lothbrok.

      1. As you please, your Jarlness.

        1. Good, now go sacrifice yourself for the hanged God.

      2. You have to hand it to this guy for his self-selected manner of address:

        His Excellency, President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Doctor Idi Amin Dada, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Seas and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and Uganda in Particular

  22. […] at University of California-Santa Barbara urge administration to fire Laura Tanner, a graduate student in the Department of Feminist Studies, who has been working as a […]

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