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Embattled professor who refuses to use ‘ze’ calls on others to do the same

A bill making its way through the Canadian legislature, C-16, seeks to add “gender identity or expression” to the country’s criminal code of categories protected from discrimination.

The person leading opposition to this bill is University of Toronto Professor Jordan Peterson, who argues that, if passed, people could be imprisoned for refusing to call someone by their preferred gender.

Over the fall, he released a series of videos arguing the legislation would punish people for “misgendering” others, and he continues to be the most vocal critic as the measure moves forward. For that, he has received intense backlash, and the university has threatened to fire him for allegedly creating a climate of fear and danger on campus.

In a lengthy interview with C2C Journal headlined “We’re teaching university students lies,” Peterson expanded on why he continues to fight this battle against what he calls forced political correctness and “compelled speech.”

Asked what people can do to fight this? “They can refuse,” Peterson said. “They can refuse to be pushed in this direction any further. Anything that’s predicated upon group identity, we need to get rid of.”

Here are more highlights from the lengthy interview:

First of all, “he” and “she” are not marks of respect. They’re the most casual terms possible. If I refer to someone as “he” or I refer to someone as “she,” it’s not a mark of respect, its just categorization of the most simple and obvious kind. There’s not anything about it that’s individual, or characteristic of respect. Second, you have no right to demand from me that I do anything with regards to you that’s respectful. The best you can hope for from me is sceptical neutrality and courageous trust. That’s it. That’s what you get from me. …You have no right whatsoever to ask me to mark you out as special in any way whatsoever. …

These people [advocates for multiple gender identities and laws to protect them] claim that identity is a social construct, but even though that’s their fundamental philosophical claim, and they’ve built it into the law, they don’t abide by those principles. Instead, they go right to subjectivity. They say that your identity is nothing more than your subjective feeling of what you are. Well, that’s also a staggeringly impoverished idea of what constitutes identity. It’s like the claim of an egocentric two-year old, and I mean that technically. Your identity isn’t just how you feel about yourself. It’s also how you think about yourself, it’s what you know about yourself, it’s your educated judgement about yourself. It’s negotiated with other people if you’re even vaguely civilized because otherwise no one can stand you. If your identity isn’t a hybrid of what you are and what other people expect, then you’re like the kid on the playground with whom no one can play. …

There’s a war going on at the heart of our culture. Lots of people have talked about political correctness, and the fact that its pernicious. Often, that just disappears into the ether. I think what I did was different because there was something I said I wouldn’t do. That took the general and made it specific. …

The thing is if you replace compassion with resentment, then you understand the authoritarian left. They don’t have compassion, there is no compassion there. There’s no compassion at all. There is resentment, fundamentally. …

There’s also this idea that you shouldn’t say things that hurt people’s feelings – that’s the philosophy of the compassionate left. It’s so childish it’s beyond comprehension. What did Nietzsche say: ‘you can judge a man’s spirit by the amount of truth he can tolerate.’ I tell my students this too, you can tell when you’re being educated because you’re horrified. So if its pleasant and safe, it’s like you’re not learning anything. People learn things the hard way. …

There’s nothing about the PC authoritarian types that has any gratitude for any institutions. They have a term – patriarchy. It’s all-encompassing. It means that everything our society is, is corrupt. There’s no line, they mean everything. Go online, go look at ten women’s studies websites. Pick them at random. Read them. They say ‘western civilization is a corrupt patriarchy right down to the goddamned core. We have to overthrow it.’ …

Read the full piece.

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