Conservative Claims of Cultural Oppression: On the Nature and Origins of Conservaphobia (Transgender Edition)

01:00 Conservative Claims of Cultural Oppression: On the Nature and Origins of Conservaphobia (Transgender Edition),
03:00 Philosopher Rony Guldmann,
38:00 Hero systems,
48:00 Liberal and conservative reactions to gay identity
1:02:00 The rise of Christian nationalism
1:08:00 The buffered identity purports to transcend all hero systems, but leaves many listless
1:12:00 Why isn’t nudism a celebrated identity?
1:15:00 MSM focus on polyamory,
1:19:00 Polygamy,
1:25:00 Rony favors a Palestinian state
1:31:00 Sam Bankman-Fried,
1:33:00 Joseph Bankman,
1:35:00 Barbara Fried,
1:42:00 Can you have universal morality while hating out-groups
1:44:50 DTG on live streamers,
1:51:30 Vaush is Unironically Evil & SHOULD QUIT,
1:55:20 Mini-Decoding John Gray: Indulgent Monologuing,
2:40:00 Fahad Boty joins the show
2:58:00 Muqtada Al-Sadr,
3:01:00 The Gaza Question

Philosopher Rony Guldmann writes in his work in progress:

Conservatives sometimes oppose the right of transgendered people to access public restrooms designated for the opposite biological sex. And liberals typically dismiss this opposition as just another narrow bigotry. But it need not rest on bigotry, and conservatives could make the following case: A biological male is within his rights to self-identify as a female and attach more importance to this inner self-conception than to his biological sex. But he cannot reasonably expect others—for whom any such disjunction between biology and identity is foreign—do the same and recognize him as a female. His sexual self-identification is a private matter, but his biological sexuality is a public one, and others will respond to what they can see and hear. His perspective is legitimate, but so too is theirs. Both express equal but ultimately incommensurable frameworks of identity. He is on the losing end of this conflict, not because he is morally inferior, but because of a utilitarian calculus resting on 1) a social consensus that the sexes should use separate restrooms, 2) the fact that he is in the minority and 3) the fact that the resources available for the construction of public restrooms are finite. Someone is going to be left feeling uncomfortable, and it is the greatest good of the greatest number that determines who this will be. If the primary purpose of public restrooms was to serve as forums for authentic self-expression, then the charge of bigotry would hold, because restrictions on transgendered people’s freedom would then be a denial of their basic dignity. But this is plainly not their purpose, which is why a utilitarian calculus is in order.
If liberals dismiss this utilitarian calculus as narrow prejudice, the reason is that conservatives’ resistance to transgendered rights reflects their failure to rise above the “peculiarly human emotions,” to rise above the natural equation of biological sexuality and ultimate identity. Conservatives’ preferences cannot be permitted to enter into the utilitarian calculus because these preferences reflect what a failure of virtue, a failure of discipline, a failure to resist reflexive “common sense.” In assigning some deep meaning to human anatomy, conservatives are indulging in pre-modern temptation, once more surrendering to teleological libertinism, anthropocentrically attributing to sexual anatomy a significance it does not truly have. Liberals will characterize the prejudice of conservatives as a failure of “enlightenment,” the symptom of irrational animus. But what is called “prejudice” is more primordially a failure to transcend ordinary embodied perception toward a higher state of spiritual purity and freedom, a failure to adopt the sort of emotional asceticism that would enable this transcendence. What liberals present as mere opposition to prejudice is in fact an “old love,” their positive promotion of a spiritual ideal, opposition to which must be socially defined as prejudice.
This social definition can become a self-fulfilling prophesy. Sensing what is the disingenuous imposition of a hero-system, conservatives will predictably be driven to resent the transgendered persons through whom that imposition is taking place. And so what was originally liberals’ deceptive and self-deceptive histrionic mimicry of a detached non-sectarianism becomes socially vindicated as the genuine article, because it has created at least part of the irrational animus in opposition to which it can define itself. The anointed need the benighted in order to see themselves as anointed and may for this reason cultivate the very benightedness against which they will subsequently rail.
This histrionic mimicry is also apparent in the liberal writing of history. Historian Rick Perlstein argues:
“Liberalism is rooted in this notion of the Enlightenment, the idea that we can use our reason, and we can use empiricism, and we can sort out facts, and using something like the scientific method—although history is not like nuclear physics—to arrive at consensus views of the truth that have a much more solid standing, epistemologically, than what the right wing view of the truth is: which is much more mythic, which is much more based on tribal identification, which is much more based on intuition and tradition. And there’s always been history writing in that mode too. But within the academy, and within the canons of expertise, and within the canons of professionalism, that kind of history has been superseded by a much more empirical, Enlightenment-based history.”
But what liberals see as scientific rigor, conservatives see as the liberal elites’ primordial anti-American hostility, discussed in Chapter Two, the elites’ foundational conviction that American patriotism is somehow vulgar, pedestrian, or uncivilized.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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