A Response to the Lies of “A Sacred Androgen”

Recently, the Antioch Review has published an article full of hateful lies, stereotypes, and absolutely incorrect medical information about transgender people titled “The Sacred Androgen” (link marked as “nofollow” so as not to boost the page’s rank).

In response to this, Brynn Tannehill wrote a scathing condemnation of the article and The Antioch Review itself, titled “Antioch Demonstrates Why Mid-West Kills Queers from the Inside Out“.

And in addition to Brynn’s article, I sent the following email to Christina Check who is listed as the contact for The Antioch Review. I encourage all of you to do likewise. The more they hear from us, the more they may realize they have done something ugly and horribly wrong, and perhaps retract and apologize for that piece of garbage they published.

My letter to the editor lies below this line



If you had published such a pile of garbage laden pile of tripe about black people, your offices might have been buried under angry responses from across the nation already.

If you had published such a garbage laden pile of tripe about gays, you would have been dragged through the major press and rightfully pilloried publicly destroying your reputation.

Yet you think you can get away with it against transgender people?

Your author uses every bad stereotype, ignores all the current medical evidence including neurobiological evidence that has led the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, the American Association of Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychiatric Association all to conclude that:

1. Being transgender is not a mental illness (and it’s no longer listed as one in the DSM)
2. Being transgender is a neurobiological medical condition caused by in utero hormonal ratio variations during early pregnancy.

Your article goes on and paints trans women as sex obsessed fetishists which couldn’t be further from the truth and which theory has been totally destroyed. Bailey’s work on “autogynephelia” has been refuted because what he thought was solely trans obsession turns out to be common natal female behavior as well.

Your author asserts that transgender people are mentally ill while mental health professionals say that being transgender is not a mental illness. Your author then goes on to support reparative therapy which has been proven to increase suicidality, and never ever “cures” anything.

Your author cites the 41% suicide attempt rate as proof of mental illness and ignores that mental health professionals cite that as proof of the deep systemic hatred and oppression our culture has displayed towards transgender people. Mental health professionals say YOU need to change your attitudes towards trans people, and not that trans people need to change.

Your author launches into rape culture objectification of women and then tries to use that as a reason to see trans women with disgust.

Your author tries to assert that trans women are just gay men but ignores actual biological evidence that trans women are as different from gay men, in the brain, as they can possibly be.

The above microscope slides are just one of many studies demonstrating that trans women have brain structures very similar to cisgender women and nothing at all like gay men.
In short, your article, “The Sacred Androgen”, is hate speech targeted at a minority group that is being actively attacked and oppressed today in popular media and by right wing politicians and churches for being different. Yet the medical community, across the board, supports trans people and who they say they are. There are only a few old fossils, like Paul McHugh, Bailey, and others who get regularly trotted out by the right wing to support these hateful views.

With the publication of “The Sacred Androgen”, The Antioch Review demonstrates that it is not a rational nor respectful publication and that anything it publishes should be ignored, discarded, and that the Review itself should be driven into the ground as a purveyor of hate speech.

You should be ashamed of yourselves but bigots never are. Just like racists have been hiding in the closet for the last 40 years until Trump came along, bigots never give up their ugly ways and we now know that The Antioch Review is a publication of bigots and bigotry.

Cara Ramsey


6 thoughts on “A Response to the Lies of “A Sacred Androgen”

  1. thank you for writing this and it also makes me realize that “gender fluidity” and all the “demi-genders” being ushered under the trangender “umbrella” are nonsense aimed purely at trans erasure: Those parts of the brain are not fluid at all.

    • I suspect that gender fluidity is more a process of self discovery. Another thing to note is that some people do have brain structures mid-way between what is considered male and female and often these people consider themselves of no gender or having no sexuality (asexual). So there may be a biological basis for people who view themselves as agender or asexual in nature.

      As for the “demi-girl” and other such genders, I think people are trying to throw off the nonsensical binary views of Judeo-Christian nonsense, which is a lie created for control of women and other gender non-conforming people by men. Many ancient cultures recognized anywhere from 3 to 6 genders. The entire gender binary, male/female rigidness, is a result of Puritanical science denying religious extremists being in control of our culture for the last 2000 years.

      • Yes, I myself am asexual. I have never felt sexual attraction to another human being but I am very capable of loving another person in a platonic way. I have tried (very hard) to please them sexually, but I usually failed.

        Personally I found the stereotypical male gender roles imposed on me to be unacceptably restrictive. Apart from my gender dysphoria I wanted the same freedom that women have: To be who I want to be and to do what I want to do … I just want to be an equal woman.

  2. *

    Those in the opposition camps persist with their lies (at best, their deliberate ignorance) no matter how many times you (and many others of us) have had to repeat your (our) message to them.

    Thank you (and others) for your persistence. One day the ice will melt in our favour.

    Yes, some people who self-describe as ‘gender fluid’ admit that they do find they are in a period of self-discovery rather than fixed in some nebulous interim. They expressed their words during the various lgbt meetings here at the Phoenix area. Though I may not be ‘fluid’, I find their perspectives a healthy learning experience each week – they are among the reasons that keep me returning for more.

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