We are terribly remiss in our coverage of women’s sport in The Spectator, so I thought I would try to put this right a little by drawing your attention to last week’s 2018 Maste rs Track Cycling World Championship — in particular the sprint category for 35- to 44-year-old women. The gold medal was won, in Herculean style, by the Canadian Rachel McKinnon.
Her appearance on the podium provoked some discussion. It wasn’t simply that Rachel was quite obviously a man, but that she hadn’t even the grace to disguise herself very much. Usually when men transition, they put a bit of effort into it — maybe some lippy, a pair of staple-on breasts etc. It’s not usually very convincing but hell, at least they tried. Not Rach. She just looked like a large bloke in spectacles. If you rummaged around in her shorts, I wonder what you would discover — possibly the usual frank’n’beans, so to speak. Rach tells people she identifies as a woman, which allowed her to enter into the race (and of course win it, much to the very great chagrin of the bronze medallist Jennifer Wagner, who suggested it ‘wasn’t fair’).
Rachel McKinnon also identifies as a ‘doctor’, having completed a PhD in Specious Twattery at some dimbo college in Canada. His — sorry, Rach, I’m not going along with the charade any further — Twitter page also lists several other things he identifies as: ‘Public Intellectual, Trans Woman, Queer Chick, Strident Feminist, Athlete, Vegan’. Yes, of course, vegan. I think we’d get along terribly well. He was about 29 when he decided to tell people he was a lady and has subsequently decided that he is also a lesbian, which seems to me to be having your cake and eating it. McKinnon accepts that men have certain advantages over women when it comes to many, if not most, sports, but suggests that tall people or powerfully built people also have advantages over those who are short or feeble and so the issue of gender doesn’t matter one bit, really.
It is an absurdity of course. And yet this narcissistic idiot’s fragile sensibilities are totally indulged by the authorities, infuriating his female competitors and making a mockery of the sport. How did we get to this stage, where a shrill but microscopically tiny percentage of the population get to have things their way, to the detriment of everybody else?
The gap between male and female ability at sport is immense (and not noticeably narrowing): to take an extreme example, both the Australian and USA women’s football teams — among the best in the world — have been beaten by sides composed of 15-year-old boys. An average pub team would hammer the England women’s team. Unless, of course, the England women’s team was comprised of Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane, Jordan Pickford et al, who had suddenly decided to identify as women for the afternoon.
The authorities now try to police the issue by focusing on testosterone — but that is a red herring, and does not account for those other advantages enjoyed by men such as height, weight, spatial awareness, speed, musculature, and not being impeded by a pair of mammary glands bouncing up and down. There is only one meaningful test: what chromosomes do you have? Everything else simply evades the issue and does a huge disservice to the women who have trained long and hard for their sports only to find themselves outgunned by a bearded person who has decided to acquire the soubriquet Loretta.
Simply to say this, of course, is to be committing a hate crime. And yet it is also incontestably true. It worries me that many things you can say these days are both true and a hate crime. It speaks to me of a society which is trying desperately hard to distance itself from the most pernicious and inconvenient of things — reality.
Meanwhile, the government is thinking of expanding the term ‘hate crime’ until it covers absolutely everybody in society, even straight white men. In other words, all crimes will be hate crimes, to the point where the term itself becomes utterly redundant, even if it wasn’t already.
In one sense this is fine — it means that people will no longer be treated as if they had ‘protected characteristics’, because it will be against the law even to hate people because they don’t have ‘protected characteristics’. That is, all characteristics, or a complete lack of them, will be protected. But it is also a further expansion of the lucrative anti-hate industry, which is doing the same as all other pressure groups and attempting, in the end, to encompass the entire world in its glorious victimhood.
You might remember that when the disability charities started out they were fighting for rights for a tiny proportion of the population who were both discriminated against and, of course, handicapped. They even used that word. But eventually, in pursuit of more money and having seen their early goals attained, and through the immense hubris which attends to people who run campaigning bodies, we were told that one in five of us is disabled, and then one in three. And disability was no longer about not having any legs, or being blind, but having a bit of a bad back. Just as the LGBTQI lobbyists — who once stuck up for a persecuted tiny minority — will tell you these days that one in three of us are gay or bi or, hell, something which Jesus Christ didn’t like very much.
In other words, we can all be victims of something. But if we really are all victims, then it seems to me that there are no victims at all. It is all just life, with its tiresome vicissitudes, its hurtful impositions, its utter unfairness. Someone tell Rachel McKinnon.