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News From The Future, Bruce Jenner Edition: June 30, 2021

Chicago, Illinois -- Body-image activists gained another edge in their quest for acceptance with the election of Joanna Mecklen of Schaumberg, Illinois, as the first altbody-light (ABL) member of Congress.

"I'm here to serve the people of Illinois, and hopefully to inspire fellow altbody citizens to new heights," they said from their wheelchair. "We're all in this together!"

Tiffany Branewave of Chicago was ecstatic. "I know what they've been through. To see them at this moment, in their triumph... It's indescribable."

Ms Mecklen, like Ms Branewave and many others, lived most of their life under a regime of bigotry against people with varied body images that permeated society, religion, and even the medical literature. It wasn't until the classifications of "anorexic" and "bulimic" were removed from the DSM-VII manual of mental disorders in 2019 that they were finally able to pursue the body images they desired. 

"I knew I was overweight at 135 pounds," Ms Mecklen disclosed in a courageous interview in Time in May. "But when I really started to take control of my life -- to become who I really am -- everyone fought me. My parents, my sister, friends, even my kids. But they don't have the right to call me 'skinny'. I know what I am. I got to 87 pounds before they forced me into a hospital."

Their hospitalization was seven years ago. Though they were forced to gain weight at that time, they were determined to shine a light on the unfair biases in society and the medical establishment.

Their social media campaign, driven around the slogan "My Body, My Image", shattered the taboos related to anorexia, bulemia, obesity, and other altbody styles. T-shirts emblazoned with #MBMI sold ‎-- in every size -- across the US and EU.

Backlash from conservative groups sparked controversy over who gets to define the health of another human being. Another campaign, "What the hell? Healthier than who?" or #WTHHTW, drove altbody issues into the public consciousness in 2018, ultimately leading to changes in the way ABL and altbody-big (ABB) people were treated. 

Chrysalis Heinz, an ABB and transgender activist who convinced Mecklen to parlay their social media success into a run for Congress, describes what happened next this way:

"When Joanna reached out, the purity of their situation and their soul came pouring out. They highlighted the intrinsic unfairness of allowing the cisbodied to define what it means to be healthy, unhealthy, skinny, fat, whatever. As the inherent judginess of those words ‎became clearer to people, they rallied around them and all of those like them. I remember the day when I told my doctor that they had no choice but to perform my gender reassignment surgery, despite their concerns about my 450 pounds. Their cisbody, cisgender, cisnormative attitudes no longer interfered with my rights. They HAD to do what I asked. 

"It's a victory for equality, justice, tolerance, and freedom for all of hupersonity."

Ms Mecklen, now 76 pounds, says they're ready to bring about real change for the altbodied. "Time's wasting away," they said. "Society needs to legally support everyone, from sixty pounds to six hundred. Airlines, so-called 'health food' stores, physicians, hospitals, you name it -- all the organizations that we used to conform to -- now have to learn to conform to us."


Correction: The article originally reported that Ms Mecklen said, "I'm wasting away" rather than "Time's wasting away." We deeply regret the error, and hereby abjure and revoke any and all statements made by us or our employees, accidentally or intentionally, publicly or privately, and, pursuant to judgment CA.ALT 3-243.b(AP06032021) levied against us, ‎we are donating all revenue generated by this article to People For Legitimizing Alternative Body Images (PFLABI).

Comments (24)


Jake, you have outdone yourself.

Paul, you have no idea how much the grammar on this one hurts me. "They" instead of "she", "who" instead of "whom"... Do you see how I suffer for my art?

I'm fairly certain that you posted this thinking that you had written satire. Don't be suprised if in fact it turns that prophecy is the more appropriate genre in which to categorize this piece.

"News From The Future" is always that way. By the time we hit the date it describes, it may seem like a wild exaggeration or a quaintly understated prediction.

I'm told (but have no desire to google it) that the 'Net already sports pro-anorexia sites promoting it as an alternative body image and teaching girls and women how to continue with their anorexia and fend off inquiries, not be caught, etc. People who work with teens are pretty unhappy about this, to put it mildly.

I'm still waiting for the Olympic police to take back Jenner's gold medal because he competed in the wrong category.

Likewise, I am waiting for all sports entities to collapse under the weight of not being able to distinguish competitors and competitions on the basis of gender.

And, by the way, can someone (anyone...please?) define the notion cis-x (whether cismale, cisman, ciswoman, whatever) in a way that is not hopelessly self-referentially self-defeating? Every attempt I have seen so far is completely self-defeating.

And Jake, how in the world can you even THINK these things? Ugh!

In related news, the altbody huperson N. Hanced Feet was officially banned from competing in yet another sport, basketball. Sieur Feet originally had its feet lopped off as a personal image issue, (it claimed that those "feet" were just slabs of tissue shacked to the ends of its legs, and it wanted its legs freed from the shackles), but soon after obtained prosthetic feet that enabled it to achieve unusual success in kickboxing competitions. Eventually that sport's regulating body banned prosthetic feet from its competitions. Now 6 more sports organizations have followed suit.

PFLABI has been active in protesting against this reactionary, benighted attitude. S. Feet joined with PFLABI in condemning the pronouncement, and in an interview anticipated Congressional hearings bringing several of these sports' leaders before a House panel, with Joanna Mecklen on the committee.

I'm still waiting for the Olympic police to take back Jenner's gold medal because he competed in the wrong category.

I'm waiting for the big reveal any day now. Where someone in sports or Hollywood (or both) announces that "he/she" had "his/her" sex change years ago before fame hit and now the time has come to fess up and be brave. This event will shock most people (I had no idea!!) and accelerate and cement the normalization of transgenderism.

Lydia: Ugh.

can someone (anyone...please?) define the notion cis-x (whether cismale, cisman, ciswoman, whatever) in a way that is not hopelessly self-referentially self-defeating?

I don't know whether this is self-referentially self-defeating or not, but I'm cismale because I'm male and that's the "gender I was born with", as opposed to a transmale who "is male" but who was born female.

I am cisnormative because I believe people should "identify" as the "gender they were born with". I don't know what the opposite of "cisnormative" is.

So "cis-x" means something like "someone who identifies along dimension X with the way they (or others, in the case of 'cisnormative') were born.

And Jake, how in the world can you even THINK these things? Ugh!

It's easy. And now you can think these things, too. You're welcome.

because I'm male and that's the "gender I was born with"

But the claim, at least for many of the "trans" people, is that "I am and always have been a female, and the fact that I was born with body parts that some people identify with 'being a male' didn't and doesn't define me." So the "gender I was born with" is decidedly not based on "the organs I was born with."

And because there are some (now a growing percentage) of the "trans" people, while they "feel" like they are female even though they have body parts that most people associate with being a male, THEY DON'T WANT TO CHANGE their body. They just want to be recognized as being female. So in their view, the physical fact of "having organs that have historically been associated with 'being male' " is not really what "makes you male", because they are NOT male (says they). So there is no longer any meaning to "normativity" by way of any reference to organs, or how you were born. Not the way they use the words surrounding gender. In their usage, there is no longer any meaning to "male organs" because some people who are female have such organs and some people who are male don't. In their usage, there is no longer any usage that is capable of being unambiguous. (Which is borne out in the 57 varieties of "gender" on facebook, many of which are clearly not distinct, some of which have no gender-laden content at all, and most of which have no agreed-upon meaning or usage.)

If we refuse to be sane about it, can we just jump over the short term nonsense and get directly to the end-game: all matters "gender" are utterly and absolutely personal and private choices, nobody else should even CARE what gender you are or aren't today (and it may change tomorrow at your whim), and so there is no reason to "recognize" gender at law, it becomes a legal non-issue.

Bill, you've made my day.

I know I keep saying this like a broken record, and I hope this isn't a threadjack here, but I just hope some of the evangelical colleges that are playing with fire in this area finally get the memo: You _cannot_ put the "T" in your alphabet soup at your college and say that you are trying to make "T" people feel loved and welcomed as long as they don't commit actual sins according to your college covenant (!!) unless you are prepared to play along with their insane pretense. I really, really hope that Wheaton and Gordon and Calvin and any other similar schools do not mean that if someone like this showed up they would lodge him in the women's dorms, insist that teachers and students all call him "her," and solemnly agree that he "really is a woman." But they chipperly have the "T" in their "supportive" student clubs, while stupidly declaring that this is all just about helping people and making them feel loved when they have certain feelings, because the feelings aren't sins, blah, blah. But transgenderism is _not_ just a feeling. It is a self-declaration of identity. I wonder if there are Catholic high schools and colleges with the same issue: "We want to support GLBTQ people because we are loving, but *of course* we aren't endorsing any sinful actions." If you're doing the only thing "T" people will accept as "support," you are endorsing _insane_ actions, including sinful ones (getting one's body mutilated, taking drugs to feminize or masculinize oneself) and demanding that everyone else endorse them as well.

Not a threadjack. Quite relevant.

Jon Stewart's commentary, while obviously liberal, was hilarious. In a liberal way, it sums up the epic stupidity of what Jenner did.

Btw, conservatives should make an issue out of banning this surgery. Any person (including a doctor) who performs it should be liable serve jail time. For crying out loud, you can't collect too many peach pits in this country because the feds are afraid you are going to try to make the useless substance Laitril (sp?) out of it and deceive the masses, or something. But this type of surgery is legal. I'm sympathetic to the claim that we have too many laws, but this wouldn't be one of them. This is straightforward abuse of the medical profession for the purpose of mutilating people.

I haven't studied transgenderism much, but I suspect that it's a phenomenon quite different from disorders such as anorexia or bulemia.

However, the DSM ref and the hashtag were nice touches.

How so, Scott?

On the other hand, not all doctors are in agreement with the liberalized media meme here:


The pro-transgender advocates do not want to know, said McHugh, that studies show between 70% and 80% of children who express transgender feelings “spontaneously lose those feelings” over time. Also, for those who had sexual reassignment surgery, most said they were “satisfied” with the operation “but their subsequent psycho-social adjustments were no better than those who didn’t have the surgery.”

And he does explicitly compare this to anorexia - not in suggesting that the disorder is based on the same mental mechanisms, but that it is a disorder with respect to the patient's perception of themselves.

I haven't studied transgenderism much, but I suspect that it's a phenomenon quite different from disorders such as anorexia or bulemia

Perhaps, but that seems like pedantic hair-splitting. The point is that we have a full-on media propaganda program to pretend nothing weird is going on. I even had a friend who had his acedemic career threatened. His offense? He didnt join a standing ovation when a faculty member announced he was going transgender.

"Quite different from" in the trivial sense that one bizarre mental problem involving body image can be "quite different from" another. Not "quite different from" in the sense that either of these is _not_ a bizarre mental problem which it is destructive for society to encourage and play along with.

If anything it's at least possible to recover from anorexia, but once surgical mutilation has been carried out, it is irrevocable. In that sense, eating disorders are not as inherently destructive as followed-to-the-surgical-conclusion gender confusion. Of course you can also just die from an eating disorder, so there's that. So, sure, the details are apples and oranges, but that in no way negates the legitimate and sensible point the main post was making.

Years ago on Wesley J. Smith's old-old blog site, I witnessed a thread discussion about BIID, in which people think their healthy limbs "don't belong" and want them cut off. One of the commentators, who as far as I could tell was not being facetious, seemed to be supporting the general idea of cutting off an arm or leg but said that she (I think it was a she) had once met someone whose body image was of himself as a vent-dependent quadriplegic, and she thought that was "going too far." You really can't make this stuff up.

Wow! This is prophetic (and I am a Cessationist lol).

Saw this on slashdot yesterday. It's the funniest thing I have ever seen on the transgender issue. I would buy that commenter a beer if I met him/her in real life.

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