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Stumping experts on gender

Answering the question, “What is a woman?”

The Daily Wire

Stumping experts on gender
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The question “What is a woman?” shouldn’t be an interesting one, but it is because, with today’s shifting mores on gender, not everyone knows the answer. In the provocative, 90-minute documentary What Is a Woman?, conservative news site The Daily Wire confirms some people have been so immersed in the world of preferred pronouns and crossdressing drag queens that they can’t define “woman.” Or maybe they won’t.

Matt Walsh plays the role of roving journalist, sitting down with gender therapists, doctors, academics, transgender activists, protesters, and typical Americans to ask them for their definition. Walsh has a reputation as a conservative firebrand, but he is fair and effective at warming up his subjects and gliding them into a tight spot with his questions.

The documentary is front-loaded with “gotcha” moments from those interviews: the pediatrician who acknowledges that 4-year-old boys who believe in Santa Claus can also believe the fantasy that they can become girls if enough cross-sex hormones are pumped into their prepubescent bodies, the gender studies professor who finds Walsh’s pursuit of truth offensive and transphobic, and the congressman who would rather cut off the interview than give Walsh a proper response to his question.

Pinning down a politician for a straight answer on anything is tough enough, but the fact that medical experts and regular folks also give Walsh nonanswers, run-arounds, and circular definitions (e.g., “A woman is anyone who calls themselves a woman”) is troubling. If all this transgender stuff seems kind of fishy, Walsh would say, that’s because it is.

Perhaps the closest to a real response comes from psychiatrist Dr. Miriam Grossman. “Sex is biology. Sex is unchanging. 99.9999 percent of the cells in our body are marked male or female. Gender, on the other hand, is a perception. It’s a way of identifying.” Eventually the documentary becomes a forceful critique of the transgender movement.

In its waning minutes, the documentary loses steam and veers off message when Walsh, who had merely asked questions for most of the running time, steps back into his normal day job as the angry conservative commentator.

Transgender activists claim the documentary’s makers requested interviews under false pretenses. It seems unlikely a transgender activist would willingly speak with The Daily Wire. Whatever the case, their convoluted on-camera responses still show that it’s impossible to keep a story straight when it’s not based in reality.

Available only through The Daily Wire, the documentary has spare foul language and one interview with a naked man seen from the waist up. But given the discussions of genitalia and sexuality, only adults and teens should be watching.

Juliana Chan Erikson Juliana is a correspondent and a member of WORLD's investigative unit, the Caleb Team. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate and earned a master's degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Juliana resides in the Washington, D.C. metro area with her husband and 3 children.


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