POTAS: Harsh, But Not Cruel


Monday, February 20, 2023

Last week, Matt Walsh posted a clip from his daily show to Twitter in which he took aim at trans-activist Dulan Mulvaney with some rather nasty comments. 

In the two minute-long sequence, Walsh says that Mulvaney does “not pass as an attractive woman, or as a woman at all, even with 50 pounds of makeup and plastic surgery.” He then goes into several more comments criticizing the appearance of Mulvaney, and reiterating that he will never be a woman.

Walsh and I probably don’t differ all that much on the matter of rejecting transgender ideology, but there’s a stark contrast in our attitudes towards the afflicted. In my view, people who identify as transgender are suffering from immense bodily discomfort, something most young adults experience at one point or another. I think that the suggestion that their discomfort can be solved by ignoring their biological reality or by mutilating their bodies to fit their misguided perception is a grave mistake and is doing irreparable damage, particularly to kids and young adults. I’m all for banning transgender surgeries for minors, banning classroom advancement of gender ideology, and other measures to protect our kids from falling into the trap of gender dysmorphia. 

Plenty of people on the left would go ahead and write me off as a transphobe, and most would be reluctant to even entertain any of the aforementioned policies. That unwillingness to even engage with the conservative approach is pervasive among trans activists, who view their fight as the next frontier of the fight for equality. Overcoming that major disconnect between the left and the right is extremely difficult, but not impossible. However, I can promise that if we address the issue like Walsh does, we are only going to drive people further from the conservative positions. 

The underlying difference between Walsh’s beliefs and my own is that I fundamentally think that most people who support so-called “gender affirming care” do so because they genuinely think that it is in the best interest of the afflicted. The vast majority of people who support transgender surgeries, hormone treatments, pronoun use, and other trans affirmations are doing so because they want people to feel comfortable in their bodies. 

Is it harsh to reject a person’s self assessments of themselves? Yes. Anyone who has had to speak to a friend about a developing weight problem, substance abuse, or other self destructive behaviors knows this to be true. However, Walsh’s comments delve too far into the outright spiteful. There’s nothing wrong with telling someone that their gender identity is at odds with reality, but focusing your comments onto their appearance does nothing but make yourself look like a bully. Comments like these make the conversation with the other side harder, not easier. 

In 2022, 60% of Americans say that sex is determined at birth. That number is growing, up from 56% in 2021 and 54% in 2017. This is a fight within the culture war that we can win, and one we can’t whisk away by playing into the callous stereotype that the left paints of us. 

If conservatives want to prevail on the issue of transgenderism they must address the issue with compassion, not relentless bullying of those who suffer from gender dysmorphia. Aside from kindness being a generally good rule of life, our compassion on the issue is the key to swaying those that are on the fence. If we want to change minds, we need to be ready to give people the harsh truth, but stay away from cruelty.

Dace Potas is the President of Lone Conservative. He previously served as an editor and columnist. He is a senior political science student at DePaul university. He has bylines in The College Fix and Just The News.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.

Share This

About Dace Potas

Dace Potas is the President of Lone Conservative. He previously served as an editor and columnist. He is a senior political science student at DePaul university. He has bylines in The College Fix and Just The News.

Looking to Submit an Article?

We always are happy to receive submissions from new and returning authors. If you're a conservative student with a story to tell, let us know!

Join the Team

Want to Read More?

From college experiences to political theory to sports and more, our authors have covered a wide assortment of topics tailored for millennials and students.

Browse the Archives