Monday, September 03, 2012

"Homophobes" and "transphobes"

Its basic values (and the reason for its moniker) Jen stated thus:

    We are…
    Atheists plus we fight homophobia and transphobia,

Amen to all that.

Richard Carrier prides himself on being rationally rigorous. Yet here he’s clearly genuflecting before the altar of political correctness.

Why do I say that? Because the argument against “homophobia” contradicts the argument against “transphobia.”

Those who defend homosexuality typically claim that homosexual orientation is hardwired. There are lots of different theories about what “naturally” causes homosexuality, but that’s the underlying contention. Homosexuality is said to be a natural variation.

By contrast, those who defend transgender typically claim that gender is a social construct. They oppose “gender essentialism.”

But this raises an obvious question: how can homosexual orientation be hardwired if gender identity is socially constructed?

Of course, Richard Carrier doesn’t allow himself to ask that elementary, but awkward little question.


  1. Plus we don't have a clue what a phobia is.

  2. I am so confused now. Carrier is probably some sort of determinist - probably genetically driven like Dennett. If so then whats wrong with a phobia? And why is it right to oppose phobias? Aren't people with phobias deterministically so? Isn't Carriers opposition to those with phobias also driven by his genetics. So how could one be right and the other not right?
    I am so confused still. All this rationally rigorous thought is making my head spin.
    But then thats what I am supposed to do. Oh well. I love science...