Pop Scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson Challenged On His Defense Of Extreme Gender Ideology

neil degrasse tyson gender
Bruce F Press, CC BY 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

The world’s favorite scientist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, has been dipping his smarty-pants toes into the culture war waters lately, this time steering his ship into biological seas. He recently came under fire for a TikTok video in which he rather pompously scolded us regular IQ individuals for taking issue with the gender ideology cult. 

After taking quite the shellacking on social media for his unscientific method argument in favor of transgederism, he went on the YouTube show Triggernometry to attempt to speak slowly enough for us rubes to understand his arguments. I have to give it to him; he’s either brave enough to take the heat from detractors, or he doesn’t care how ridiculous he sounds.

The exchange between Mr. Tyson and satirist Konstantin Kisin was extraordinary. However, Mr. Kisin didn’t need to do much to prove how invalid Mr. Tyson’s arguments in favor of extreme gender ideology are.

Ok boomer

What kicked off the need for astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to explain himself was a TikTok video in which he goes off the scientific rails on those questioning gender ideology.

He starts:

“The XX/XY chromosomes are insufficient because when we wake up in the morning we exaggerate whatever feature we want to portray the gender of our choice.”

That’s what I do in the morning when I decide whether to blow out my mohawk to new heights or swoosh it to the side in a more nod to punk glam.

He goes on to explain:

“Suppose no matter my chromosomes today I feel 80% female 20% male I’m gonna I’m gonna put on makeup I’m gonna do this. Tomorrow I might feel 80% male I’ll remove the makeup and I’ll wear a muscle shirt.”

These things may be totally true for this person. But as a scientist, Mr. Tyson knows that someone’s feelings don’t change their chromosomes.

I often don’t wear makeup, not because I feel more male than other days, but because I have no reason to wear makeup and prefer to let my skin breathe. And when I wear makeup, I wear bold colors, not because I feel more female that day, but because that’s my style. 

These things don’t change my gender.

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Part of the point

When allowed to get a word in, Konstantin Kisin on the follow-up Triggernometry episode with Mr. Tyson laid out the actual issue people have with the extreme gender ideology movement, or at least a significant part of it:

“The reason the conversations become an issue is that we assign and allow certain privileges to people based on their sex.”

These ‘privileges’ Mr. Kisin is referring to are bathrooms, changing rooms, sports competition, and basic manners, and he mentions a fifth seemingly unique to the United Kingdom, although I would argue probably just more subversive in prevalence in the United States – female-only shortlists for opportunities in government and business.

Mr. Kisin went on to explain that:

“…when you make a claim that you are female, you are attempting, whether intentionally or not, to insert yourself into categories that are deliberately designed to protect women’s interests.”

Mr. Tyson went on to argue that there is a solution for bathrooms by just creating private spaces for everyone instead of based on gender. Still, my favorite was his attempt to explain away the sports issues. Neil seems to think we should adjust how we compete in sports by “carving” out the field based on “hormone ratios.”

Mr. Tyson brings up an obscure example of an unnamed female athlete in a similarly unnamed sport who had a higher natural testosterone level than the average female as a reason to mix and match sports.

Mr. Kisin, who, mind you, is not the world-renowned scientist in this conversation, rightly brought up that there is more in biology that separates men from women, such as hip angle, heart and lung capacity, and bone density. 

Since he didn’t have a valid counterargument, Neil bit back with:

“…solve it rather than take your older view of the world and force modern emergent conduct of people to fit that!”

Here you can see the stone heart of progressivism: at some point, they just admit that they’re sticking it to the “old ways.” 

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The rest of the point

Konstantin brought up excellent, valid points regarding the contested conversation landscape on gender ideology. Still, I’d like to offer a follow-up point.

I don’t care if a grown man wants to wear a dress and makeup. I don’t care if a grown woman wants to wear men’s clothing and take on a more androgynous style.

I’m a punk rocker at heart – I loved and still love the late great David Bowie and his alter ego Ziggy, and one of my favorite shows features a transgender actor whose superb acting skills make their character more interesting. What I have a problem with is when your preferred lifestyle means I must change my preferred lifestyle and when your preferred worldview means science and the protection of children and women are thrown out the window.

Mr. Tyson ended his viral TikTok with these fiery questions:

“Why do you care? What business is it of yours to require that I fulfill your inability to think of gender on a spectrum?”

Detransitioner Chloe Cole bit back beautifully:

“It’s my business because you’re using 1950s gender stereotypes to justify the ideology that leaps to sterilization and mastectomies of 15-year-old girls who just don’t fit in. Girls like me.”

Amen, sister. Growing up, I was not a typical “girlie girl.” 

Sure, I had Barbie dolls and My Little Ponies – but mostly, I used them to reenact large-scale battles in my living room or create a little mini Salem Witch Trial, much to my mother’s dismay and my older brother’s amusement. I wasn’t into baby dolls, I hated lace and dresses, and I was not interested in boys… at least not as interested as my other female counterparts were.

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That didn’t mean I was a boy, and it also didn’t mean I was a lesbian, as many have thought throughout my life. It means I didn’t have and still don’t have a very “feminine” personality. 

Be very wary when scientists openly abandon the scientific method in order to push an agenda.

Now is the time to support and share the sources you trust.
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USAF Retired, Bronze Star recipient, outspoken veteran advocate. Hot mess mom to two monsters and wife to equal parts... More about Kathleen J. Anderson

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