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“No, I don’t think men can get pregnant”

A U.S. senator responds to a Berkeley law professor trying to set him straight


UC Berkeley Law Professor Khiara M. Bridges removes her mask to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. Associated Press/Photo by Andrew Harnik

“No, I don’t think men can get pregnant”

Hearings before legislative committees are usually as boring as sawdust. Then again, every once in a while one can lead to a moment of explosive revelation. That is exactly what happened yesterday when a witness before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary went after Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., over who can and cannot become pregnant.

In an exchange that went almost instantly viral, Sen. Hawley asked Khiara M. Bridges, who teaches law at the University of California, Berkeley, about references in her testimony to “people with the capacity for becoming pregnant.”

“Would that be women?” the senator asked.

The law professor responded, “Many women, cis-women have the capacity for pregnancy. Many cis-women do not have the capacity for pregnancy. There are also trans men who are capable of pregnancy, as well as non-binary people who are capable of pregnancy.”

Undeterred, Sen. Hawley soldiered on through the ideological thicket: “So this isn’t really a women’s rights issue?”

Professor Bridges retorted that this issue “impacts women” but that it also “impacts other groups.” Condescendingly, she added, “Those things are not mutually exclusive, Sen. Hawley.”

Just seconds later, the law professor laid her ideological cards on the table as she addressed the senator: “I want to recognize that your line of questioning is transphobic and it opens up trans people to violence by not recognizing them.” The senator rejected the suggestion that an assertion of biological fact could lead to violence.

Then came the crystalizing moment. The witness turned to ask the senator a question: “Do you believe that men can get pregnant?” With brevity uncommon to U.S. senators, Hawley answered, “No, I don’t think men can get pregnant.” Bridges then declared, “So you are denying that trans people exist.”

There was more to the exchange, but you get the point. The two worlds collided in just a few seconds. One is the world of biological and reproductive reality fundamentally grounded in being itself. The other is the world of the sexual and gender revolutionaries, the cultural Marxists, the critical theorists, and their academic kin and political bedfellows. Well, strike “bedfellows” for now and replace it with “people with the capacity for being bedpersons.”

One of the toxins of critical theory in any guise is that it destroys any claim of objective truth. It is now undeniable that critical theory goes on to destroy any claim of objective reality, even biological necessity.

These two worlds are now contending for supremacy. The world of Professor Bridges is now firmly in control of elite higher education and the political left. There are pregnant men in that world, as Bridges insisted. The other world is not only the world of Sen. Hawley, it is the world of farms and homes and churches and playgrounds and schools where reality still matters and where human nature remains unchanged. That is the world all human beings inhabited until very recently. And I mean very recently.

I recognized Professor Bridges from her work as a law professor and ethnologist. Schooled (and now schooling others) in the world of critical theory, postcolonial studies, modern ethnology, intersectionality, and sexual liberation, she has written widely about the intersection of race and gender and pregnancy. I pulled up a handful of her most recent scholarly works and went back to look at her books, including Reproducing Race, published in 2011. In that book, Professor Bridges wrote extensively about “pregnancy as a site of racialization.” An interesting fact: The pregnant people referenced in that book are identified as women.

The same is true in an article written by her and published just two years ago in the Harvard Law Review titled, “Race, Pregnancy, and the Opioid Epidemic: White Privilege and the Criminalization of Opioid Use During Pregnancy.” It is exactly what you suspect: critical legal studies and critical race theory applied to claims that minority persons “with the capacity for pregnancy” are victims of unjust prosecutions for illegal drug use during pregnancy.

But that is not what Professor Bridges actually wrote way back two years ago. No, she wrote about pregnant women. A reporter at National Review counted 45 times Bridges used “woman” in the article and 349 uses of “women.” There are three references to transgender persons, but there are no references to “people with the capacity for becoming pregnant.”

One of the toxins of critical theory in any guise is that it destroys any claim of objective truth. It is now undeniable that critical theory goes on to destroy any claim of objective reality, even biological necessity. Professor Bridges claims to inhabit a world in which a man can become pregnant and in which it is a form of violence to limit a pregnant state to women—and yet that is exactly what she was doing just two years ago.

Sanity consists in recognizing reality. Reality, grounded in being itself, denies that a man can become pregnant. The gender revolutionaries now increasingly in control of the culture insist that a man can be pregnant, but that requires a definition of a man that would include ovaries and a womb. That world of unreality is so new that Professor Bridges didn’t catch on until some point in the last 24 months. That world is also the world of moral insanity.

Remember Professor Bridges as you decide where to send your son or daughter to college. If he or she should go on to study what is being taught at Berkeley, and with rare exceptions it probably is, don’t be surprised to find your own version of Professor Bridges, freshly home from school, living in the bedroom down the hall.


R. Albert Mohler Jr.

Albert Mohler is president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Boyce College and editor of WORLD Opinions. He is also president of the Evangelical Theological Society and host of The Briefing and Thinking in Public. He is the author of several books, including The Gathering Storm: Secularism, Culture, and the Church. He is the seminary’s Centennial Professor of Christian Thought and a minister, having served as pastor and staff minister of several Southern Baptist churches.


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