Margaret Atwood Shared Not One, But Two Transphobic Essays This Week
If it walks like a TERF, talks like a TERF, and shares essays like a TERF...
Best known for that novel you might have had to read in high school, and its accompanying TV series, author Margaret Atwood has been trending on Twitter for, well, sounding a whole lot like a TERF.
Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminism — AKA TERF — is a title assigned to feminists whose feminism excludes or is generally hostile towards trans people. TERF accusations were first sent Atwood’s way last week, after she shared an article titled ‘Why can’t we say ‘woman’ anymore?’.
— Night of the Living Wooloo (@MockWooloo) October 23, 2021
Since sharing that story on October 19, Atwood appears to have doubled down on her stance, tweeting another article on October 24 titled ‘Trans rights? Yes. Toxic, in-your-face activism? No’ from CBS.
The first of the articles Atwood shared was written by Rosie DiManno for the Toronto Star. The Op-Ed questioned the use of gender-inclusive terminology in healthcare, like “people who can be pregnant” in some instances replacing the term “women”. DiManno argued that the term “women” will be eradicated due to “trans activism run amok” and lead to further discrimination against women.
good news, we still can! big fan of your fiction on the dangers of enforcing extremely rigid bio-essentialist ideas about gender btw
— michael wave: gourd boy edition (@SzMarsupial) October 19, 2021
Notable figures both within and outside the trans community debunked the concerns raised in the piece when replying to Atwood’s tweet.
Award-winning author Amanda Jetté Knox replied to Atwood pointing out that “we can still say ‘woman’ & we can also say ‘people’ when it makes sense to use more inclusive language. I’m nonbinary. I also menstruate and gave birth to 3 kids. Saying “people with periods” includes women AND me”.
The second piece shared by Atwood was written by Jessica Triff for CBS. The thesis of this piece is that ‘in-your-face’ trans activism is what sees figures like JK Rowling labelled ‘TERFS’ for speaking out against gender-inclusivity is toxic.
And see, what’s likely going to happen next is any trans or nonbinary person who came into your mentions to try and correct the misinformation you shared in this article will soon be flooded with transphobic replies that attempt to erase OUR identities. Happens every time.
— Mx. Amanda Jetté Knox (@MavenOfMayhem) October 19, 2021
Essentially, the article argues that trans people should ask for basic human decency a little more politely — because that’s clearly the real problem here, isn’t it?
Along with the essays, Atwood also tweeted a thread of other resources that supported her position that included a defence Rowling.
According to Atwood and the articles she has shared, the people calling people TERFs for spitting TERF rhetoric are toxic — not the celebrities with large platforms and influence promoting ideologies that harm some of society’s most vulnerable people.
Honestly, make it make sense.