by Matt Walsh
Parents be aware: soon the magazine rack in the checkout line at the supermarket will feature this profoundly disturbing image of Bruce Jenner. The picture is plastered right on the cover of the next Vanity Fair issue, and it shows Bruce dolled up in makeup and hair extensions, posing in a corset, with parts of his face, forehead, and throat shaved off for cosmetic reasons, and his chest enhanced by hormone pills, Photoshop, and silicone. The idea is to make the 65-year-old grandfather look like a college girl, but the effect is that he looks like a distorted version of neither.
Indeed, Bruce admitted that after his “facial feminization” surgery he had a panic attack, looking in the mirror and asking, “what did I just do to myself?” We can only hope that these regrets don’t lead to further self-harm, as they have for so many men in his situation. I fear the worst, because Bruce is rushing the procedures so that his “transformation” coincides with the reality show they’re filming. Eventually the cameras will go dim, and Bruce will be stuck with what he’s done to himself. I pray for him when that dark moment arrives.
In contrast, the cheery headlines across the media inform us that Bruce posed for Vanity Fair in order to “debut his new identity.” In the interview accompanying these horrifying pictures, Bruce schizophrenically refers to himself in the third person, speaking as if he’s two different people.
He says that he hasn’t decided if his second persona will start sleeping with men, but he’s not focused on that right now. He’s just happy that, through extensive plastic surgery, high doses of synthetic chemicals, pounds of makeup, and a liberal use of Photoshop, he can finally be himself. By dismantling, dismembering, mutilating, and editing himself, he is himself, he says.
In one particularly depressing segment of the article, Cassandra, Bruce’s daughter, says that the two of them finally have a relationship. They “can just be girls together,” she reported. Cassandra apparently gave up on having a father, and has settled for a girlfriend to gossip with.
It’s just wrong. Disgusting, frankly. While I feel sympathy for Bruce’s psychological struggles, it’s selfish to do this to your children. First to take their father from them, and then to coerce them into dealing with such a devastating development in front of the whole world.
Of course, while his family takes the brunt of it, the mob trips over itself to congratulate Heroic Bruce. ESPN has even announced plans to give him the Courage Award. There was a time when this award went to guys like Pat Tillman, who gave up his chance at fortune and fame to sacrifice his life on the battlefield, but the honor devolved quickly from there. I thought it hit the basement last year when they handed it to former third string NFL player Michael Sam for achieving the remarkable feat of being gay while playing a game.
Shockingly, it turns out ESPN actually isn’t the most reliable arbiter on courage.
(Speaking of ESPN, last night, I turned on what used to be one of my favorite shows, “Around the Horn,” to hear their analysis on the NBA Finals this week. Instead, I was treated to a sermon from a sport’s writer about making sure I use the right pronouns when referring to male cross dressers. I’d really prefer to know how Lebron James and the Cavaliers are going to slow down Steph Curry, but, yeah, let’s have a transgender vocabulary lesson. Cool. Thanks, guys. You know, if I want to be preached at by humorless progressive gasbags, I don’t need the worldwide leader in sports. I have Comedy Central for that.)
ESPN isn’t alone. A search through Twitter and Facebook reveals unanimous praise, with “brave” and “beautiful” and “historic” being indiscriminately tossed around like so much confetti.
It’s all quite sad.
That said, I wouldn’t want anyone to accuse me of being critical, so what I’d like to offer, on this glorious and unprecedented occasion of a reality TV star’s Photoshopped magazine spread, are just a few observations. I’m not interested in levying baseless insults — which would still be far less harmful than the baseless compliments being hurled Bruce’s way — so I’ll stick to simply observing the reality.
Right now, there are five realities that really jump out at me:
Transgenderism Kills Feminism
As conservatives and Christians have run away terrified by the prospect of having meaningless words like transphobic tossed at them, it might ultimately be, in a strange twist of fate, the feminists who take down the “transgender” narrative. If they ever figure out that “transgenderism” is a direct assault on their entire worldview, maybe it will prompt a full fledged civil war in the progressive ranks.
After all, according to mainstream feminist wisdom, there is no such thing as a “female brain” or a “female soul” or “feeling like a female.” By the words of every liberal who has ever said anything on the subject of women’s rights in the past four decades, how you dress, look, think, and feel have nothing to do with your womanhood. Usually it would be offensive and sexist to accuse a woman of acting like, thinking like, or feeling like a woman.
Yet now, suddenly, emotions and looks define a woman so severely that a man can actually become one if he claims to experience feelings that he assumes are feminine?
The whole thing contradicts itself.
Feminism and transgenderism say two opposing things about what it means to be a woman. In fact, feminists have come up with the term “neurosexism” to condemn the misogynistic and “pseudo-scientific” idea that male and females brains are different. But Bruce Jenner claims he has “the brain of a female,” so how does this work? Do you mean to tell me that the only people who can have female brains are males?
Meanwhile, feminists regularly insist that the absence of a uterus and a vagina excludes men from having an opinion about things like abortion. So a man can’t have ideas about women’s issues because he lacks the correct anatomy, but he can actually be a woman despite lacking the correct anatomy?
How does that make any kind of sense?
Transgenderism and feminism cannot coexist. Progressives can’t have both.
They’ll just have to choose.
For my part, I agree that a man can never lay claim to womanhood. I also agree that there is such a thing as a female brain and a female soul — and by extension female emotions and female personalities and female characteristics — but the trouble is that female brains and souls are always contained securely in female bodies. A man will never be born with a sloth’s heart or a rhino’s liver or a birch tree’s root system, just as he will never be born with a woman’s brain.
I’m told that white people appropriate black culture when they listen to Nikki Minaj or wear flat brimmed hats. I’m not sure that such offenses constitute cultural theft as much as they indicate possible brain damage, but that’s not the point. If we’re worried about groups appropriating from other groups, I think we need to investigate the practice of calling a man a woman because he grinds down his forehead, wears eyeliner, and pins back his genitals. If you look closely, you might find reason to consider this an appropriation of womanhood, or worse, a degradation of it.
There is more to being a woman than “feminized” facial features and frilly underwear. Bruce Jenner in drag is not beautiful. Women are beautiful because they are women. Womanhood is itself beautiful. Women bring something distinct and special to the world. They fill a void and play a role that no man can.
A woman is a woman not merely because of whatever cosmetic feature a man might vaguely emulate. A woman is a woman because of her biology, which Bruce does not share and never will. A woman is a woman because of her capacity to create life and harbor it in her body until birth, which Bruce cannot do. A woman is a woman because of her soul, her mind, her perspective, her experiences, and her unique way of thinking, of loving, and of being — all things Bruce can only mimic.
A woman is a woman. She has earned that title. She pays for that title. She suffers with that title and gives life with that title and lives from conception until death and beyond with that title. She is that title. She should not be told that it’s such a flimsy thing that a man with enough money can buy his way into it. It’s demeaning and reductive, and as a father and a husband and a son and a brother, I take exception to it. I can only imagine how women might feel if they were only allowed to be open about it.
And notice I said I “can only imagine,” because that’s all I can do. I cannot experience a woman’s thoughts or feelings due to the fact that I am not one.
Neither is Bruce.
Identity Is Not In the Eye of the Beholder
I’ll be honest, I don’t like TheBlaze’s headline on this story, and I don’t like any of the other headlines in any other publication.
“Bruce Jenner Unveils New Female Self”
You don’t get to have a “new” self or another self or a different self or a Self 2.0. Your self is your self. It’s your being. It’s your essential personhood; your particular and unrepeated character. Your self is your body, mind, and soul. It is physically, metaphysically, spiritually, philosophically, scientifically, rationally and logically impossible for a self to change into a new self. A self can only be what it is.
“Bruce Jenner Unveils New Self”
“Bruce Jenner Debuts New Identity”
“Bruce Jenner World Premiers New Soul”
We’re talking about a sex change like it’s an Apple product. With this kind of language, we have not only made the self mutable, we’ve also commodified it and turned it into a spectacle that can be sold for profit. This is a bastardization of our humanity on a scale and to a degree that wouldn’t have even crossed the tortured minds of last century’s most prophetic social critics.
We’re talking about a sex change like it’s an Apple product.
It’s all so evil and so bizarre and so unthinkably ridiculous that no dystopian sci-fi writer could have predicted that the collapse of western society would look like this. Right now Orwell and Huxley are looking on in deep regret. “Man! An apocalyptic future where people are so pampered, conceited, and bored that they pretend they can snap their fingers and reconstruct their soul from scratch — why didn’t I think of that?”
There is Nothing Authentic About This Version of Bruce
After many years and at least a dozen viral Dove marketing campaigns, it seems that, for the sake of the gay agenda, we’ve utterly abandoned the whole “women shouldn’t be Photoshopped or plastered with makeup and silicone in order to reinforce a subjective standard of femininity” thing. Perhaps the one single thing liberals were actually right about has now been tossed into the garbage because it doesn’t serve the gay/”transgender” narrative.
I mean, you can’t very well return to lauding the “natural beauty” of women after you just called Bruce “brave” for using digital and cosmetic enhancements to attain some shallow approximation of it. You can’t lambaste the modeling industry for trimming, slimming, snipping, cutting, painting, and operating on women for the sake of physical allure after you just got finished telling us that Bruce achieved his “true identity” through the same methods.
GLAAD applauded Bruce for being his “authentic self.” Tragically, they weren’t trying to be ironic. A digitally modified, cosmetically altered, manipulatively posed, chemically tampered with, basically cartoon image on a magazine cover is now authentic, according to the terminally dishonest folks in the gay and lesbian activist camp.
Authentic, for God’s sake. Do I even have to explain why that word is inappropriate in this context?
That picture was literally the definition of inauthentic. If it wasn’t inauthentic, then nothing is. And certainly you couldn’t call a legitimately attractive Actual Woman “fake” for a few touched up photos meant to augment what’s already there, when Bruce doesn’t get the label despite the elaborate surgical producers conducted on his face, the absurd amount of make up, and the fact that he had to hide his hands and tuck his penis between his legs to distract from what isn’t there. If that’s “authentic” then I guess I can slop some Kraft Mac and Cheese in a bowl and call it authentic Italian cuisine, and Taylor Swift can make dance songs about breaking up with her boyfriend and call it “authentic” country music.
The Battle for Reality
I’ll be told, especially by many conservatives, to leave this alone and find something more important to talk about. But millions and millions and millions of people — both in the media and outside of it — have said far more about this topic and demonstrated a much greater interest in it than I ever have, yet they’re never instructed to shut up and move on. While conservatives justify their miserable cowardice by insisting that it’s just an irrelevant sideshow and they’re simply too wrapped up in more serious matters to pay it any mind, you’ll notice that progressives treat “transgenderism” as one of the most important cultural frontiers.
Any time a transgender person uses the bathroom these days, progressives throw a parade like the the Allies just defeated Germany.
Bruce Jenner posing in women’s underpants was headline news across the country. The White House called it “brave” and “powerful.” The President of the United States of America, leader of the most powerful nation on Earth, came out publicly to hail Bruce’s “courage” for having fake breasts and waxed legs. It was the number one trending story on every social media platform. Bruce Jenner’s “female” alter ego got over a million Twitter followers in four hours.
Everyone is acting it like it’s a big deal. As long as they have the “correct” opinion, they’re allowed to.
And they’re right — it is a big deal.
This is a battle for reality, people. Get your heads in the game.
If progressives can wield the power to demolish and remake even the definition of “man” and “woman” in their ideological image, then they have achieved a total and irreversible cultural victory. They have reached into the universe and reshaped reality itself. They have become gods, or at least that’s the kind of power we give them. You can blab on and on about economics and foreign policy, but if we live in a country where confusion, perversion, and self-worship reign supreme, what’s the point? America will already be dead.
We All Know the Truth
Last question for the people — particularly straight men — who claim there is no real distinction between a “transgender” woman and a real woman: Would you marry a woman who used to be a man? Would you look at this “former” man and think, “I want to make him my wife?”
Answer: No. You wouldn’t. You won’t. And you know it. Instinctively, when it comes down to it, where your life and love are concerned, you recognize the difference between a biological woman in all her glory, and a castrated man in all his derangement. I’m spending thousands of words convincing you of something you know. And I know you know it. And everyone knows that everyone knows it.
So why are we still having this conversation?
That I don’t know. But as long as it continues, I’ll keep reminding you of the things you already know, because someone has to.
Bruce Jenner is not a woman in any sense or to any extent.
And you already knew that.
Matt Walsh is a blogger, writer, speaker, and professional truth sayer. This is a contributor at The Blaze, where this article was first published. Listen to Matt’s latest podcast here. Contact Matt for speaking engagements and general comments at [email protected]. To see Matt speak at the Great Homeschool Convention in Ontario, California on June 19, click here.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.