You Can't Be the Side of 'Women's Rights' If You Don't Know What a Woman Is | Opinion

The Republicans are poised for a massive red wave in the midterms which could carry on through to the next presidential election. With COVID panic winding down and the harsh economic reality of our response beginning to sink in, a full 50 percent of respondents to a new CNN poll said that "the economy" was their top concern, and Americans are not conflicted about who they blame; a recent Gallup poll showed that people believe the Biden administration's "poor leadership" ranked alongside inflation and the economy as one of the "most important problem[s] facing the country today."

This is the context in which to understand some of the recent cultural battles that the Democrats have been waging—as a naked attempt to excite the base. Faced with the impossible task of convincing voters that they will be an effective solution to the country's current economic woes, Democrats have been attempting to kindle performative outrage on a range of cultural issues, particularly those relating to the LGBT community.

The most successful campaign was the hyperbolic reaction to Florida's "Parental Rights in Education" bill, which called for greater curriculum transparency and prohibiting classroom discussion about sexuality and gender identity in kindergarten through 3rd grade. Perhaps noting that a majority of Florida Democrats supported the bill, Democrats opted to rebrand the bill as the "Don't Say Gay" bill to cast a popular bill as a form of homophobia. False claims of Republicans attacking transgender athletes and blocking necessary medical treatments for trans-identifying children have also been used as a rallying cry.

These heavily distorted narratives on relatively fringe issues have proven largely ineffective at galvanizing enthusiasm. And then, a golden opportunity presented itself in the form of a leaked draft of a Supreme Court opinion that seems poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, a landmark decision guaranteeing a woman's right to an abortion in all 50 states.

Abortion rights, like women's rights generally, have been a central pillar of the Democratic party platform for decades. Few issues have the propensity to motivate Democrat partisans and recapture a growing number of disaffected liberals who have expressed a willingness to hold their nose and vote Republican to combat so-called "wokeness."

A person holds a transgender pride flag
A person holds a transgender pride flag. ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

But here's where things get interesting: The new woke political correctness around trans issues are in a fundamental tension with the popular liberal view on feminism that powered the success of the women's rights activism over the past half century. And the truth that's beginning to emerge as the Democrats try to motivate their base around abortion is that they have committed themselves to such radical ideologies about sex and gender in recent years that they can no longer leverage abortion as a women's rights issue; after all, they now believe that men can get pregnant.

The Left's commitment to gender ideology, which holds that being a man or woman has nothing to do with biology and everything to do with one's subjective identity, has resulted in them reframing reproductive rights—a longstanding women's issue—in dehumanizing language that seeks to denude the subject of its uniquely female, biological core. Progressives now routinely speak of "birthing bodies" and "people with uteruses" instead of "mothers" and "women" so as not to offend a hypothetical transgendered woman or man.

In keeping with gender ideology, Apple, Google, Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms have introduced a "pregnant man" emoji, and online medical websites such as Healthline now claim that "it's possible for men to become pregnant and give birth to children of their own."

In one particularly shocking example of how gender ideology has corrupted the discourse surrounding abortion as a women's rights issue, the ACLU described the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg as "a champion for abortion and gender equality," and then included a quote of hers with the words "she," "her" and "woman" removed and replaced with gender neutral terms.

It's going to be a tough sell to common-sensical liberal women leaning Republican over woke overreach that the party that represents them on abortion is the party that thinks men can have them. This view is so fringe as to undermine what has been a mainstay of the Democrats' popularity for suburban women for decades.

And you're seeing the tectonic plates of gender ideology and women's rights grinding away at each other in the discourse surrounding the leaked Supreme Court opinion. For conspicuously absent in Left-wing commentary on the Supreme Court leak is the word "woman." Indeed, a May 3 editorial in The Washington Post covered the story in 837 words without using it once, though it did manage to include the terms "pregnant individuals" and "pregnant people."

Such a glaring omission from the editorial board of a major news outlet about a classic women's rights issue can only have been a conscious one. And as those on the Left continue to make these conscious omissions, they forfeit their credibility as champions of women's rights and squander any chance they may have had to galvanize support.

While the Right has not been the best or most consistent champion of women's rights in the past, they at the very least understand that a woman is an adult human female whose oppression is grounded in her biological sex.

If the Democratic Party were truly serious about upholding women's rights, they would focus on dismantling the single biggest threat to women's rights that currently exists—gender ideology. No party can pretend to care about, much less champion, the rights of women when they're afraid to use the word and cannot even define it when asked.

Colin Wright is an evolutionary biologist and Founding Editor of Reality's Last Stand.

The views in this article are the writer's own.