If you believe nothing, you’ll believe anything

This, from Vice, is very good: America’s Most Influential Conspiracy Theorists Are Going All-In On Transphobia. It’s about how people with various agendas, from Qanon conspiracists to self-promoters, are finding transphobia the perfect vehicle for making the world demonstrably worse. And this is not a US-only phenomenon.

The fact that these once-fringe subcultures and the so-called mainstream have merged to such an extent means that when they all focus their attention on something, the effect is especially devastating. And right now, that shared focus is an all-pervading panic and hostility about drag queens, “groomers,” transgender identity as being somehow “contagious,” the supposed sexualization of children by LGBT people, and the false claim that gender-affirming care is a form of abuse or mutilation. 

…The relationship between the anti-vaccine and anti-trans movements makes logical sense, in that they both farm a specific suspicion of science and mainstream medicine. More subtly, both the anti-vaccine and anti-trans worlds also try to weaponize regret, sowing fear that a medical choice might go irreparably wrong.

…This sort of explicit instrumentalization of conspiratorial ideas is the direction, it would seem, in which things are heading. Demonizing trans people is proving popular because it has political and social utility for so many different people, from Substack to the hall of Congress, from increasingly popular podcasts and the guests they can’t seem to give enough time to to parents confused, as parents always are, by the way the world has changed since they were young.



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