Feminist activist Devin Buckley isn't too happy with Harvard. She had been scheduled to give a talk on British Romanticism at the renowned institution. Although her appearance focused on poetry and philosophical thought and philosophy, a student at the school uncovered online information about her stance on transgenderism, showing that she opposed biological males being incarcerated in women’s prisons.
According to The Post Millennial, Devin is an active board member of the Women's Liberation Front (WoLF), which, according to its website, claims to have a gender-related mission to eliminate gender stereotypes that discriminate against women and the rampant violence of men by using legal arguments, advocacy for policy, along with public education.
In order to achieve the abolishment, WoLF has a plan: Help to facilitate a shift in culture away from gender roles and stereotypical sex; stop sex segregation in domestic violence shelters and prisons that affect women who are the poorest and most vulnerable; help support the needs of lesbians as well as bisexual women; be vocal against censorship targeted at women and protect freedom of speech for women.
Prepare yourself for the difficult one: Defend against sex segregation in bathrooms, sports and locker rooms. Help detransitioners fight to heal and be heard.
On April 18, Devin reportedly received an email from a Harvard English Department employee: “I've got bad news for you. When we were making the application for next year's grant, my co-coordinator was able to look at your profile on Google to ensure that [we] had the correct information about you in the application.”
The controversy was revealed: “The woman was shocked to learn that your profile on the internet is mostly based on controversial trans-related issues, and you're on the board of an organization that has the public position of describing trans people as dangerous and deceitful. Because you're primarily interacting with the public as an activist [rather] than a Romanticist, which puts the…department as well as myself in a difficult situation.”
The email continued: “It's really not so just because of your personal beliefs about trans identity. The issue is more with the public position that you've taken and the manner in which you've developed an image of professionalism around these concerns… We're so sorry that we couldn't offer the official invitation that I promised you. You've performed cutting-edge research in the field of Romanticism and the study of religion. Perhaps we can come up with an alternative engagement with you in the near future.”
Devin isn't impressed. “This is a case of Harvard deplatforming me for political reasons entirely unrelated to my scholarship,” she wrote back.
She also dished out an impressive number of points. “If it is not acceptable for me to address Harvard about British poetry and philosophy simply because I am a woman, I would like to invite Harvard to rid its museums and libraries of anyone who has opinions that are not acceptable to Harvard… If I'm not to be silenced, why do the books and works of the world's countless homophobes, racists, sexists, and sexists remain on Harvard's revered shelves and are read with respect? Harvard should be able to cleanse all of them, leaving nothing more than the pureness of space.”
Devin has also explained that WoLF is the only organization that “claimed that some trans-identified males are dangerous in virtue of being predators” and that males in women's jails “are a threat…because they are violent males.”
Regarding her comments about museums and libraries, we live in strange times. A lot of websites and TV shows are describing transgender rights as if a different perspective is a shock, regardless of the fact that biologically based gender-separated beliefs have been held by nearly anyone who's lived prior to today.
As previously mentioned, society is telling us that we need to adopt a new type of identity. In the past, there were not many terms relating to gender–including “cisgender.” Each person was given the name of his/her biological gender. Beyond this, there was no information.
If we were to eliminate those who haven't before recognized the additional column (personal pronouns), we'll end up with a society that doesn't stretch much. This is modernity. And this is the nature of politics. For Devin Buckley, apparently, it's not a good idea to give talks with Ivy League students about poetry.