About the Quiz: Do You Discriminate Against Transgender People?

Tools to Fight Back > Quiz: Do You Discriminate Against Transgender People? > About the Quiz

The chances are you checked one or more “yes” answers on the quiz. Almost everyone does! Extremists in the transgender movement have come up with some odd ideas about discrimination against transgender people. As a result, many of us get accused of discrimination even though we are not discriminating. Claims made by transactivists affect women, girls and lesbians the most.

Here are the quiz questions. By clicking on the “see explanation” links you can find out more about the questions that puzzled you. If you haven’t taken the quiz yet, see how many of these questions you agree with. If you agree with any of them, then transactivists would say you are discriminating against transgender people.

  1. I am a heterosexual male and I have never dated and would rather not date “transwomen,” especially if they still have male genitals. See explanation.
  2. I think battered women who go to a domestic abuse shelter to escape an abusive male should be given a female roommate and receive services from female staff. See explanation.
  3. I am a lesbian and I am only sexually and romantically attracted to other females. See explanation.
  4. I think girls in public schools should not be coerced or shamed into undressing or showering in the presence of those who have male genitalia.See explanation.
  5. I am female and the time I spend with my female friends when it is females only is special to me. See explanation.
  6. I think feminist groups or other women’s groups whose members want to have female only meetings should be allowed to meet. See explanation.
  7. I don’t think it is fair for “transwomen” to compete in girls and women’s sports when the structure of their male bodies and testosterone levels give them an advantage over the females competing. See explanation.

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1) I am a heterosexual male and I have never dated and would rather not date “transwomen,” especially if they still have male genitals.
Most lesbians do not want to date “transwomen.” (See #3.) Most heterosexual men do not want to date “transwomen” either. This is not real surprising and it is not discriminatory toward transgender people either. Homosexuality and heterosexuality are about sexual orientation or preference. Transgender people can’t change their sex, just their “gender identity.” A “transwoman” is still a male. There is no reason a heterosexual male or anyone else who is attracted to females should be expected to date “transwomen” who are male.[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]Transactivists have a strange way of looking at things though. Transactivists consider it discrimination for heterosexual men and lesbians to avoid dating “transwomen” because they think gender is the only thing that matters and that sex is irrelevant. Transactivists believe that there is no difference of importance between “transwomen” and women. They think heterosexual men are transphobic or discriminating against transgender people when they don’t want to date “transwomen.”[/read]

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2) I think battered women who go to a domestic abuse shelter to escape an abusive male should be given a female roommate and receive services from female staff.
Laws protecting people from discrimination on the basis of “gender identity” are being passed in many places. Protecting transgender people from discrimination is a good thing, but protecting “gender identity” causes problems, especially for women. When “gender identity” is protected male-bodied “transwomen” are legally considered to be women and have the right to enter any public spaces previously reserved for women and girls. Women lose the right to privacy and safety in places where they undress and sleep, including shelters for women who are being battered. Being forced to room with a transgender person who has male genitals can make abused women feel anywhere from uncomfortable to deeply afraid. [read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]For example, at a women’s shelter in Ontario, Canada a transgender male (“transwoman”), Christopher “Jessica” Hambrook, was admitted and given a female roommate. The female roommate felt threatened by Hambrook’s presence and armored her body at bedtime with tights, a bathing suit and a shirt. She woke up and found Hambrook attacking her. As the court documents describe: “Her tights had been pulled down past her bottom and her bathing suit had been pulled to the side,” court documents reveal. “She yelled at the accused, demanding to know what he was doing. He simply covered his face with his hands, said ‘Oops!’ and started giggling.”

Because of laws protecting “gender identity” in Ontario, the women’s shelter “would have been subjected to a discrimination complaint had they denied him access, or even if they had asked him for medical proof of his gender identity.” (“Ground Zero: The Clash of Gender Identity Protections and Women’s Space” by Cathy Brennan. In Female Erasure edited by Ruth Barrett.)

Knowing about the dangers, some battered women no longer feel safe going to shelters, as described in an extensive report by Fair Play for Women. As one survivor told Fair Play for Women:

“I was raped as a child and again as an adult. It has affected every single part
of my life. Every relationship. Most of them were abusive because my sense of
self was so destroyed, that I thought I was worth nothing. Women’s Aid gave
me the strength to leave my abuser and save my children and myself. But even
now, I am terrified around strange men. If I even find myself alone in a lift with
a strange man, I have to get out because I can feel an anxiety attack starting.
It is an in-built biological reaction to years of rape and abuse. If a male bodied
person was in a shelter or a rape crisis group with me, I would be compelled to
leave. I would no longer feel safe.”

This same loss of privacy and safety is taking place in many other public spaces including nursing homes, homeless shelters, public restrooms and locker rooms, prisons, hospital rooms and support services for women who have been raped.[/read]

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3. I am a lesbian and I am only sexually and romantically attracted to other females.
Lesbians are female homosexuals. A simple definition of a lesbian is a woman (female) whose sexual/emotional relationships are with other females. Transactivists are contesting this basic understanding about lesbianism. They claim that lesbians who will not date or consider a sexual relationship with “transwomen” are discriminating. You have to ask, what makes transactivists think they have a right to say who is a lesbian or who lesbians should be sexual with?[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]The transactivist argument goes something like this. If “transwomen” are women, then lesbians should be attracted to them. Transactivists believe that gender identity is all important and that sex is irrelevant. They want to downplay sex because they can change their gender, but they can’t change their sex because that is physically impossible. Lesbians, according to the new creed of “trans”, are supposed to be attracted to the feminine gender instead of the female sex.

There are many reasons for women to prefer having intimate relationships with other women and sex is just one very important aspect. Due to socialization, and perhaps to genetics as well, women and men tend to have very different emotional makeups and ways of relating. There is also the huge problem of sexism in most men. Transitioning is no guarantee that a male will change on any deep emotional level or let go of his male privilege and sexism. And no matter what, “transwomen” can never be female.

For more information see:
Today’s Shameless Lesbians Won’t Be Queered” in Feminist Current
Girl Dick, the Cotton Ceiling and the Cultural War of Lesbians, Girls, and Women“[/read]

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4) I think girls in public schools should not be coerced or shamed into undressing or showering in the presence of those who have male genitalia.
What happens when the rights of transgender people clash with the rights of girls and women? The vast majority of girls and women do not want males in girls’ and women’s bathrooms! But, “transwomen” (and their younger counterparts) claim that they are girls/women and should be able to use the girls’ and women’s bathrooms. The problem with this argument is that transgender people change their gender, not their sex. Males who transgender cannot become female and usually keep their male genitals. Girls and women’s privacy and safety is and has always been protected on the basis of biological sex. They need to be protected from males, including transgender males. [read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]People worry about hurting the feelings of transgender children and young people, but how do girls feel when they are forced by their public schools to take off their clothing in the presence of someone who has male genitals and may have just decided that they are a girl after living for years as a boy? In Hillsboro, Missouri the girls were so uncomfortable that students staged a walkout when 17 year old Lila Perry, a transgender male, started using the girls’ locker room for gym class.

There are two groups of sensitive young people whose feelings and sense of well being are important. With all the recent concern about transgender rights, many people seem to have forgotten about the rights of girls. Girls matter! There is a clear need for a third set of bathrooms in all public places that can be used by transgender people and anyone who doesn’t want to be in a sex-segregated bathroom.[/read]

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5) I am female and the time I spend with my female friends when it is females only is special to me.
Many transgender males (“transwomen”) want more than anything else to be seen as bonafide women. Even though they know they are transgender and not the same as women (who they call “cisgender”), they don’t seem to want women to make this distinction. Most women treasure the time we spend with our female friends because our common experiences and our female ways of being with each other give us a connection and closeness that we don’t experience in relating to males. While transgender males may be unlike other males in some respects, they have a different biological makeup and different life experiences than women. Of course, women treasure our time together. This is not discrimination, but simply recognizing real differences. When transgender males get their feelings hurt, it is because they are trying to claim an identity that belongs to women without even asking women if it is ok with us.

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6) I think feminist groups or other women’s groups whose members want to have female only meetings should be allowed to meet.
When the three women creating the XX Amazons web site tried to give a workshop for “biological females” at the Goddess Festival in Fayetteville, Arkansas in 2017, transactivists protested and succeeded in having the workshop banned from the festival. Women speakers and feminist events are being silenced and shut down everywhere by transactivists. This happens when feminists voice their disagreement with transactivist points of view or choose to hold events that do not include “transwomen.” How can it be that one minority group, transgender people, is assaulting another minority group, women? These assaults are an attempt by transactivists to control the direction of the women’s movement and force women to support transactivist beliefs. Transactivists want to bring an end to a free-thinking women’s movement! [read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]Since the 1960s the grassroots base of the women’s movement has been powered by small, women only groups. The exclusion of men from these groups has been essential to women’s ability to come to consciousness about their oppression as females and act on the basis of that consciousness. The presence of one male in a group of women almost always results in attention being turned to him and his ideas, needs and desires. Women are trained from early childhood to defer to men and take care of men and their needs at all costs. This dynamic occurs regardless of whether a male is heterosexual, gay or transgender and saying he is a woman.

Women’s liberation is obstructed unless women are able to freely meet and recognize our common female experiences of subordination by males, come to feminist consciousness and act out of that consciousness. As the groundbreaking feminist historian, Gerda Lerner, concluded from her extensive history of “The Creation of Feminist Consciousness”:

“[S]ex-segregated social space became the terrain in which women could confirm their own ideas and test them against the knowledge and experience of other women. Here, they could also, for the first time in history, test their theories in social practice. Unlike the social spaces in which women could have equal or nearly equal leadership roles, but in which the hegemony of men remained unchallenged – such as the salons, the utopian communities, the socialist and anarchist parties – there all-female spaces could help women to advance from a simple analysis of their condition to the level of theory formation. Or, in other words, to the level of providing not only their own autonomous definitions of their goals but an alternate vision of societal organization – a feminist world-view.” (p. 279-280)

If you want an autonomous feminist movement where women are able to freely debate ideas, analyze women’s condition, create feminist theory, and resist and dismantle patriarchy do everything you can to support female only spaces.[/read]

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7. I don’t think it is fair for “transwomen” to compete in girls and women’s sports when the structure of their male bodies and testosterone levels give them an advantage over the females competing.
There is no question that males have a performance advantage over females in most sports. The primary reason for this advantage comes from the higher levels of testosterone that males have during puberty and as adults. Males have higher levels of testosterone circulating in the bloodstream, but also have permanent structural changes to the body induced by high levels of testosterone during puberty. When male born transgender people compete in women’s sports they have a big advantage due to both these factors.

Sporting authorities like the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have attempted to both create a fair playing field and allow male transgender people to compete in women’s sports. However the regulations they have created are unfair to women athletes. The male born transgenders must, according to the IOC, have had suppressed testosterone levels for 12 months. However, the permitted testosterone levels (10nM) are ten times higher than the levels that women naturally have (under 1 nM)! And, of course, the male transgenders’ bodies have those structural advantages that never disappear.[read more=”Read More” less=”Read Less”]Ana Paul Henkel, Brazilian Olympic bronze medal winner in women’s volleyball, has written an open letter to the International Olympic Committee, published by Fair Play for Women, protesting the decision to allow male-born transgenders into women’s sports. The letter is at least partly in response to the breathtaking rise of male-born transgender volleyball player, Tifanny Abreu in Brazillian women’s volleyball. Abreu switched from playing professional men’s volleyball as Rodrigo Abreu over to the women’s league in 2017 and in less than a month beat the record of Brazil’s Olympic star, Tandara Caixeta for points scored in a game. Height is critical in volleyball. The net is set at 2.43 meters high for men’s games and 2.24 meters for women’s. Abreu is a towering 6’3″ tall. Here are excerpts from Henkel’s letter to the IOC:

“Is it fair, to simply pretend away these undeniable biological differences in the name of a political ideology which will serve to restrict a space so hard won by women who struggled for it for so many centuries? How to accept “biological” men in fighting competitions, pitilessly hitting women, and then gaining acclaim, medals and money for it?”

“During 24 years, dedicated to volleyball, I was submitted to the most rigorous anti-doping control by all sporting entities, including the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). I was tested while I competed and outside of competitions to prove my body was not built on testosterone at any moment in my life. For women, of all the tests, the most important is the one which accurately measures the levels of the male hormone, which is strictly prohibited from use or its body production induced at every stage of a women’s sporting life.”
 
“To summarise, ever since my adolescence, I needed to prove, scientifically, that I am a woman to compete and, later, to maintain my achievements, titles and medals. How many women did not lose titles or were banned from sport specifically on account of this hormone which is offal in a normal male body? There used to be a mutual trust between athletes, entities and federations to keep sport clean, fair and honest, with no shortcuts nor trickery. This is now a relationship one step from being broken.”

“Transexuals’ inclusion in society needs to be accepted, but this rushed and heedless decision to include biological men, born and built with testosterone, with their height, their strength and aerobic capacity of men, is beyond the sphere of tolerance. It represses, embarrasses, humiliates and excludes women.”

“We currently look on as sporting entities blind themselves to human biology, in an attempt to hoodwink science in the name of politico-ideological agendas. We currently look on a moral perversion against women and the complicity of sport authorities around the world in a supreme form of misogyny.” (Excerpts are from Ana Paul Henkel’s open letter to the International Olympic Committee) [/read]