As I wrote some time ago, to observe the culture wars is to realize that grievance is fractal:
There’s no limiting principle. And if you watch for a while, you begin to realize that “social injustice” is not only infinite, but fractal. It’s a Julia set of grievances. Zoom in all you like; new affronts will appear at every scale, world without end.
To generate fractal complexity, start with a basic figure, then use that figure as a template for transformation at smaller and smaller scales. For example, here’s a simple “box” fractal:
Grievance works the same way. You start with the most basic grievance of all: everybody else against white males. That works for a while, but soon the fractal process gets to work, and next thing you know it’s blacks and hispanics against homosexuals — and if you let the algorithm run for while, and crank up the magnification a bit, before you know it you’ve got black women vs. gay men.
Well, as I said, when it comes to fractals it’s “world without end”, and so you can zoom in all you like. Today’s example is a developing catfight between radical feminists and “transgendered” males. As always, the issue is who’s more oppressed; you must keep in mind that we are peering into a looking-glass universe here, in which the competition for top status is decided by which identity group has the lowest status. (It’s still, mind you, just an old-fashioned contest for status; some things are simply universal.)
An article in the New Yorker sums things up. Here’s the radical-feminist argument for Top Victim status:
I will not call a male “she”; thirty-two years of suffering in this androcentric society, and of surviving, have earned me the title “woman”; one walk down the street by a male transvestite, five minutes of his being hassled (which he may enjoy), and then he dares, he dares to think he understands our pain? No, in our mothers’ names and in our own, we must not call him sister.
Anyone born a man retains male privilege in society; even if he chooses to live as a woman—and accept a correspondingly subordinate social position—the fact that he has a choice means that he can never understand what being a woman is really like. By extension, when trans women demand to be accepted as women they are simply exercising another form of male entitlement.
There’s a word for proponents of this view: TERFs. It stands for “trans-exclusionary radical feminist”.
And in this corner:
All this enrages trans women and their allies, who point to the discrimination that trans people endure; although radical feminism is far from achieving all its goals, women have won far more formal equality than trans people have. In most states, it’s legal to fire someone for being transgender, and transgender people can’t serve in the military. A recent survey by the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force found overwhelming levels of anti-trans violence and persecution. Forty-one per cent of respondents said that they had attempted suicide.
There it is, then: the fight is on, and the fur is flying. And while it would be terribly sad, of course, to see angry feminists demoted to second-class victim status, I’d say the smart money’s on the transsexuals. They’ve got all the momentum right now (as Steve Sailer notes here and here, it’s even got to the point where pro-abortion groups are dropping the phrase “a woman’s right to choose”, because it excludes transgendered men) — and let’s face it, they’re just plain edgier. Oppression of women? It’s old hat, really. Humorless, angry feminists have been around so long now that they seem almost, well, traditional.