Salon Writer Pushes Against Identity Politics?! Or is it Fake News? – Polecat Cast 125


Today on the Polecat Cast we talk about the news of the week, including hijabs for 5 year-olds in the UK, a grant to “find” fake news, Salon suddenly doesn’t like identity politics, and more! Tune in @6pm Eastern

Show Notes:

Why are Children Wearing Hijabs? Muslim Feminists Want to Know

By Max Derrat

A hijab is an Islamic garment, commonly worn by Muslim women. It is generally understood to be worn by women after they hit puberty, and to discourage sexual advances from other men.

While it may disgust some of us, like myself, that under Islam, women are responsible for the sexual actions of men… but what is more disgusting than that, is the fact that some primary schools in the western world are letting children as young as six wear them!

In the United Kingdom, a survey was carried out by the Sunday Times in order to determine how many primary schools in England include the hijab as part of their uniform policy. After examining 800 primary schools, they found 18 percent of them include the hijab in the uniform policy. For England, which has over 17,000 primary schools nation-wide, the total figure is likely in the thousands.

Now, before you start to despair about the lengths human beings will go to in order to avoid the label of “racist”, let me introduce you to a few awesome women fighting against these policies. A Muslim feminist campaigner named Aisha Ali-Khan, has spoken out about the rising trend of children wearing this garment. While speaking to MailOnline, she said the following: “The hijab should be banned from primary schools but local authorities are afraid of causing offence to the Muslim community and afraid of being branded as racist. How can a four or five year old child make an informed choice? It’s not allowed in Islam so why is it being allowed in schools?”

Another woman, a children’s rights campaigner named Gina Khan added the following: “Schools are allowing it because they are afraid of being called Islamophobic and they have been told that this is a religious garment – but they need to support Muslim girls to have free choices, not to be set apart from other children.”

Other notable Muslim feminists have commented on the issue, including Shaista Gohir of the Muslim Women’s Network. Quote: “We challenge parents who spray tan or give pole dancing classes to seven-year-olds, so we should be challenging Muslim parents who make young children wear the hijab.”

In my opinion, I think it’s wonderful to see women who follow Islam speaking out against this type of sexist subjugation… but the ultimate question is whether or not their efforts are enough?


Building a Better BS Detector

By Mike J.

Penn State professor of technology Dongwon Lee and professor of communications S. Shyam Sundar have received three-hundred thousand dollars from the National Science Foundation to create technology to help computers and smartphones determine what is and isn’t fake news. Lee believes that fake news is nothing new, but the advent of the internet and social media have exacerbated the problem. The two professors believe that through tracking the “characteristic indicators of fake news” they can develop formulas to enable digital devices to recognize and purge stories that contain them.


Salon lets one slip through the cracks
By L Kemlo
The left’s tactic of labeling anyone who disagrees with their agenda as a bigot has grown evermore tiresome over the past couple of years. After Trump won the election, I thought they may gain an ounce of self-awareness instead of labeling approximately half of the U.S. population racist, sexist, xenophobic, homophobic, etc. Imagine my shock…envision my surprise, when it was the apparent rise of the alt-right’s use of identity politics that may inspire some internal reflection.
Salon (yes SALON) has given us an article entitled: “Time to give up on identity politics: It’s dragging the progressive agenda down”. The author of this article, Anis Shivani, has never bought into identity politics and warns, rather cynically, of the mess we’re in.
Identity politics seeks to maximize emotionalism and minimize rationality, privileging culture over politics and economics where the real consequences occur. Shivani points out that the longing of liberals to cure racism at the metaphysical level, i.e. in people’s hearts, instead of limiting politics to the arena of democratic policy-making, elites have been given unobstructed opportunity to redefine economics to benefit themselves. To elaborate on how identity has been prioritized over politics he asks to consider the last election: “the contest became mostly about Hillary Clinton’s personality — she’s a woman, therefore I must be with her — versus Donald Trump’s personality — he’s a misogynist, therefore I must oppose him.”
Shivani sees identity politics as a non-winnable game that never ends, always breeding an equal and opposite reaction. Calling identity politics the mother of white nationalism, Shivani identifies that Richard Spencer’s discussions of “race as destiny”, are “no different than liberals who have been articulating every aspect of identity, split into narrower and narrower niches”. Because the left has determined “all identities are equally sacrosanct” and that “we must not critique other cultures from an Enlightenment perspective”, by the same logic even white nationalists should be given a “to each his own, and race is destiny” pass.
Shivani ends his article very pessimistically, comparing the “situation to the indoctrination in Soviet Russia in the 1930s, where only an economic catastrophe that lays waste to everything” can change anything. However, this article, published on Salon of all places, gives me hope that people will come to realize something else Shivani said: “We cannot be readers and interpreters of people’s hearts and minds; such a venture has no business in politics.”
The American College of Pediatricians says “Facts – not ideology – determine reality”
By L Kemlo
In a position statement published by The American College of Pediatricians website, eight points are laid out in opposition to “gender ideology”. The following are not in full context for time, if you want to read all of it look at

They say:

1. Human sexuality is an objective biological binary trait: “XY” and “XX” are genetic markers of male and female, respectively – not genetic markers of a disorder.
2. No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex.
3. A person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking.
4. Puberty is not a disease and puberty-blocking hormones can be dangerous.
5. According to the DSM-V, as many as 98% of gender confused boys and 88% of gender confused girls eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty.
6. Pre-pubertal children diagnosed with gender dysphoria may be given puberty blockers as young as eleven, and will require cross-sex hormones in later adolescence to continue impersonating the opposite sex. These children will never be able to conceive any genetically related children even via articifial reproductive technology. In addition, cross-sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen) are associated with dangerous health risks including but not limited to cardiac disease, high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke, diabetes, and cancer.
7. Rates of suicide are nearly twenty times greater among adults who use cross-sex hormones and undergo sex reassignment surgery, even in Sweden which is among the most LGBTQ – affirming countries.
8. Conditioning children into believing a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse.


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Brian Martinez

Part time student, part time concierge and full time illustrator all wrapped up in one creative package. Looking for opportunities to use my aptitudes, talents and competence to serve a worthy company, or start my own. Dude. Roots in Chicago. Thinker and go-getter.

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