Gay conservative writer Andrew Sullivan has drawn confusion and condemnation for an anti-transgender column arguing that lesbian women are disappearing because they’re “becoming men.”
The former New York magazine writer and former New Republic editor made the claim in a column titled, “Where have all the lesbians gone?” for conservative magazine The Spectator.
In the column, Sullivan complains that lesbians won’t be able to “take care of [gay men] when we get sick” and argues that tomboyish lesbian teens are “being told that whatever obstacles [they] may encounter…can be resolved through male hormones.”
“I miss lesbians,” he writes. “It is true that most homosexual men don’t have too many integrated in our lives, but most of us have a few. And we need them. They check our sometimes tenuous grasp of reality, they roll their eyes at our hedonism, they show us how marriages can last, and take care of us when we get sick. “
He then asserts that lesbians have “little or nothing to do with men,” adding that he “used to marvel at lesbians’ capacity to subvert what it means to be a woman.”
“We had the lipstick lesbians, in their little black dresses, and their butch partners, often strapped into a bad tuxedo on social occasions,” he writes. “We had the baby dykes, who looked like members of various boy bands, and who could get into brawls after a few beers; and the quiet proper librarian types, always on the verge of shushing you, who could instantly command a room.”
Sullivan then says that the reason he misses lesbians is because “so many are now becoming men.”
He claims that many transgender men “would once have been teen lesbians” who would “expand the realm of femaleness to the most tomboyish of tomboys.”
“But now, under the influence of queer theory and peer pressure, the tomboy is being told that whatever obstacles she may encounter, they can be resolved through male hormones,” he continues.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the response on social media to Sullivan’s column was a mixture of anger, confusion, and biting sarcasm.
“Oh NO, I thoughtlessly transitioned instead of spoon-feeding Andrew Sullivan soup when he gets a lil cold,” transgender professor Colby Gordon tweeted.
“Wasn’t aware gay men get a harem of lesbians to look after us when we’re sick???” PinkNews editor Ryan John Butcher wrote. “Surely someone should let us know that after we come out?”
One person sarcastically tweeted, “So brave for Andrew Sullivan to speak out about how trans people are destroying lesbian bars,” followed by three eye-rolling emojis.
“Well it seems the lesbians in Andrew Sullivan’s life have stopped tolerating him,” another person wrote. “That has nothing to do with trans people though.”
“Andrew Sullivan has been exhausting as long as the internet has existed,” someone else wrote. “What he has never been, however, is a *FUCKING LESBIAN* so I’m kind of at a loss how he’s anywhere near his lane. Oh, wait. He’s just stirring shit for his right-wing masters.”
One user noted, “Well at least the author himself admits he has a tenuous grip on reality.”
Another added: “Incredibly jealous of my roommate, who just asked ‘who is Andrew Sullivan?'”
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Rhuaridh Marr is Metro Weekly's online editor. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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