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Episode 4

The Anti-Trans Hate Machine

‘A Voice for Anti-Trans, Mass Media’

July 26, 2023 01:42

Various parts of the right wing disinformation machine effectively work in tandem to elevate junk science and platform people spreading anti-trans hate. In this episode, Imara takes a deep dive into the inner workings of this world by following the rise of Abigail Shrier, a woman who rose quickly from obscurity to become a so-called expert spreading the myth of social contagion. We’ll explore how she packaged these concepts in ways that was ready made for Christian Nationalist media, especially Fox News. And how they were accompanied by a mainstream appeal that’s had a devastating impact on parents and kids.

Day by day, the attacks on trans kids grow louder, and more anti-trans bills keep moving through state legislatures. In this season of the anti-trans hate machine, we illuminate how the right wing has fueled these bills by generating a breathtaking and wide-ranging disinformation campaign. Christian Nationalists are manufacturing pseudoscientific theories and using the entire anti-trans hate machine to pipe them out into the mainstream; creating a rationale for these bills. And it’s catching on. We will show you how their anti-trans propaganda is working; ultimately being laundered by some of the most powerful newsrooms in the world.

Today I’m going to explore how Abigail Shrier, someone with no real scientific or medical credentials, has become a go to source for spreading anti-trans disinformation, especially about trans kids across the media landscape.

Shrier started as a lawyer with an Ivy League education, but ended up with an opinion column at the Wall Street Journal.

There, she pushed the junk science concept of Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria.

Using anti-trans fear, ultimately led to a publishing deal for her book, Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters.

Her book argues that social influences make kids trans and that parents need to reclaim the home as a place where moms and dads model strict gender roles to stop social contagion.

By moving from channel to channel, the buzz around Shrier’s book got louder and louder and eventually became impossible to ignore.

She was a regular fixture of Tucker Carlson on Fox News, which before its cancellation, was the highest news program on any cable news channel, as well as Joe Rogan’s podcast, which has an audience of over 11 million listeners making it the number one podcast on Spotify, and these are just a few.

The vast reach of these outlets, and her voice is why the appeal for parents to resist when kids say that they are trans has found its way to ever larger audiences.

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