Column: Greer just isn't queer enough
Germaine Greer is a poor excuse for a feminist icon and should have no place in promoting her outdated brand of feminism in today’s society. Since gaining traction in the 1970s, her ideas have been continuously controversial and it seems that she doesn’t quite grasp the idea that her personal agenda for female liberation isn’t what’s best for the feminist movement as a whole.
Greer’s feminist politics are unacceptable because of a huge flaw: she advocates for the liberation of women, but that definition of women comes with a huge asterisk, excluding transgender women. It is absolutely wrong, as a proclaimed feminist, to limit the group you’re trying to empower on who they can and can’t be.
Recently, Greer was found at the center of controversy on this issue, yet again, when accusing Caitlyn Jenner of not being a real woman. This accusation is not feminism, it is blatant transphobia, and a transphobic woman should not be allowed to publicly promote a biased agenda on such an important issue or be taken seriously.
In today’s society, we still need feminism. But we don’t need exclusionary, white feminism. We need the type of feminism that continues to progress and correct the inconsistencies of a prior wave of feminism advocated by Germaine Greer. Women are tired of being restricted by heterosexual gender norms, and this has been the biggest problem in feminism since its beginning. Caitlyn Jenner has already received too much backlash and criticism to continue to be beaten down by old, white ladies who think they still live in the early twentieth century.
What Greer fails to internalize is that biological sex does not determine gender. The contrary is horrendously outdated and continues to be problematic in fundamental feminist ideals. Just because someone is born with a penis doesn’t mean that they identify themselves as being masculine or a male. To ignore intersectionality is a crime against humanity. Issues like this are never black and white, so people like Greer should stop trying to make them so.
Even worse, to bring such outdated feminist ideas into the media deters the entire aim of progressive feminism. For women to identify themselves outside of gender norms is an essential first step, but another equally important aspect in furthering this in the feminist movement as a whole is for those women to gain the positive representation in the media that they deserve. To continue to degrade women based on the already difficult situations placed on them by gender norms is disgusting and needs to stop.
As for Greer, she just needs to shut up with her offensive agenda and let the real feminists fix the problem. Greer does not deserve to share or defend her views because no matter how much we as people want to believe her views will change, they will not. We constantly have to remind people that it is almost 2016 and change is absolutely necessary. Women’s rights continue to be swept under the rug and we, the intellectual student body, need to start fighting for liberation and equality that should’ve been given to women after the first wave of feminism.
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