My father, who hated the totalitarian regime he grew up in, taught me that a crowd is always wrong and always scary. He’s also a Jew, and a Jewish instinct is that when a crowd is approaching, it’s on its way to beat you up. Whenever you see everybody nodding vigorously in agreement, that’s when scary things are about to happen.
Here are some quotes from Murray’s great book that is inspired by the same terror of totalitarian mentality.
“We can no longer trust that our listeners are honest or are searching towards similar goals. An outburst of insincere claims from members of the public may be made as eagerly as sincere ones. And so the collective ambition of public figures must become to ensure that they write, speak and think out loud in such a fashion that no dishonest critic could dishonestly misrepresent them. It should go without saying that this is an impossible, and deranging, aspiration. It cannot be done. It cannot even be attempted without going mad.”
“It is impossible to unscramble the different standards being applied simultaneously by the content of speech because speech itself has become unimportant. What matters above everything is the racial and other identity of the speaker. Their identity can either condemn them or get them off. This means that if words and their contents do still matter then they have become deeply secondary orders of business.”
“It is a curiosity of the age that, after the situation appears at the very least to be better than it ever was, it is presented as though it has never been worse.”
“Even after death the excavation and tomb-raiding will go on, not in a spirit of enquiry or forgiveness but in one of retribution and vengeance. At the heart of which attitude lies the strange retributive instinct of our time towards the past which suggests that we know ourselves to be better than people in history because we know how they behaved and we know that we would have behaved better. There is a gigantic modern fallacy at work here.”
On the truly insane story of Nathan Verhelst (which everybody should learn about): “It is not hard to imagine future generations reading such a story in a spirit of amazement. ‘So the Belgian health service tried to turn a woman into a man, failed and then killed her?’ Hardest of all to comprehend might be the fact that the killing, like the operations that preceded it, was performed not in a spirit of malice or of cruelty, but solely in the spirit of kindness.”
“Among all the subjects in this book and all the complex issues of our age, none is so radical in the confusion and assumptions it elicits, and so virulent in the demands it makes, as the subject of trans. There is no other issue (let alone one affecting relatively few people) that has so swiftly reached the stage whereby whole pages of newspapers are devoted to its latest developments, and where there is a never-ending demand not just to change the language but to make up the science around it.”
“It is hard to persuade society that it should change nearly all of its social and linguistic norms in order to accommodate sexual kinks. Society may tolerate you. It may wish you well. But your desire to dress in lady’s knickers is no reason to force everyone to use entirely new pronouns.”
And here’s the best explanation I’ve ever seen of the conflict between trans-fanaticism and feminism: “Trans campaigners intent on arguing that trans is hardware can only win their argument if they persuade people that being a woman is a matter of software. And not all feminists are willing to concede that one.”
And here is a brilliant paragraph on the consumerist mentality advocated by a doctor who cheerfully mutilates 12-year-olds with puberty blockers and believes toddlers can be trans: “It is the casualness with which she makes the follow-on point that is vaguely staggering. ‘Here’s the thing about chest surgery,’ she says. ‘If you want breasts at a later point in your life you can go and get them.’ Really? Where? How? Are people like blocks of Lego onto which new pieces can be stuck, taken off and replaced again at will? Is surgery so painless, bloodless, seamless and scarless today that anyone can just have breasts stuck on them at any point and live happily ever after, enjoying their new acquisitions?”
The meetings of these trans-affirming doctors are scarily similar to a certain brand of religiousness: “Just one of the strange things about all of this, from the audience reaction at the USPATH conference, is that Olson-Kennedy is not speaking at a meeting of ‘professionals’ but to a congregation. A fixed set of ideas are being discussed. A fixed set of virtues are being celebrated. And a fixed set of propositions are being set up, laughed at and dismissed. The audience does not sit, listen and then ask questions as at an academic or professional conference. They cheer, laugh, snort and applaud in a manner which more than anything else resembles a Christian revival meeting. Or some kind of comedy club.”
It’s a lot of quotes, I know. But this stuff is so good. Let’s enjoy it while it’s still legal. The most tragic story in the book is that of a Down’s syndrome kid: “This girl – who was known as Melissa – suffered from a range of physical and mental-health problems and had reportedly also suffered from leukaemia. For complicated reasons the mother of the child appeared to be shopping around for other diagnoses for her daughter. One conclusion that she came to – with help – was that her daughter was in fact trans. Among those who supported this claim and the resulting call for the girl to transition was Aydin Olson-Kennedy. Indeed, he asked for other trans people to donate funds in order that the Down’s Syndrome child could have a double mastectomy.” Chopping body parts off a sick child because it pleases a clearly deranged mother and a bunch of smug adults in need of some bizarre affirmation. This is beyond wrong. But has anybody here heard of this case before? This is clearly much much worse than all of the hugely publicized transgressions of a smiling kid in a wrong hat and that kind of thing. This is about actual bodily integrity of a disabled child, and nobody gives a crap.