Taxpayer-funded NPR crossed a line when it reviewed this horror novel

J.K. Rowling, creator of the Harry Potter books, is clear: men are not women.  Because she won't deny basic biology, "transgender" activists have called her a TERF, or Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist.  One man, who thinks he's a woman named Gretchen, has gone even farther, writing an incredibly graphic novel that gleefully imagines Rowling dying hideously in a fire.  And a woman who thinks she's a man has written a rapturous review of the same book...for NPR, National Public Radio.

It used to be that NPR, although it hewed left, had employees who wouldn't sink to the cheap levels seen on stations that relied on advertising dollars and audience share to function.  Taxpayer-funded NPR answered to a higher calling.  It was instructing people from an Olympian level, with its reporters and show hosts in major urban areas (New York, D.C., San Francisco) gently helping uplift the rubes in flyover country who aspired to urban, leftist sophistication.

Nowadays, as Tucker Carlson has gleefully pointed out, once-staid NPR is awash in hardcore leftism and embraces extreme versions of every modern leftist shibboleth, especially all things LGBTQ+++.  Nowhere is this more obvious than in the book review a woman named Liam McBain ("he/him") has written about a book called Manhunt, by a man who calls himself Gretchen Felker-Martin (who "identifies" as a woman).

The book's premise is generic: a virus has turned certain segments of the population into dangerous cannibals.  In this case, the virus works only on people with a high testosterone load.  McBain does a good job summarizing Felker-Martin's imaginary world:

In Gretchen Felker-Martin's electric debut novel Manhunt, the book's nightmare world is populated with everyone left — mostly cisgender women, but there are also plenty of non-binary people, transgender men, and transgender women [sic — meaning men who call themselves women]. Oh, plus a faction of authoritarian trans-exclusionary radical feminists (TERFs) slowly taking over the Eastern seaboard, killing trans people just as quickly as the infected beasts will. Told from a trans perspective, Manhunt is a fresh, stomach-turning take on gendered apocalypse.

According to the New York Post, Felker-Martin "brags about writing 'the most disgusting books in the English language, books about sexual revulsion, about body horror, about how violence forms and fits into our lives," as well as regularly tweeting violent fantasies about Rowling.  And in the book, the J.K. Rowling character dies a horrible death:

The "Harry Potter lady ... ended up being a crazy TERF, like, super intense," Felker-Martin's character said, saying Rowling hired military contractors and "had them all up at her castle in Scotland."

One of the group knocked over a lamp, sparking a fire and explosion that left Rowling and the others "to burn alive, and finally the whole castle collapsed," Felker-Martin wrote.

All I could think of when I read about Felker-Martin was the Marquis de Sade's lunatic writings about his sick sexual fetishes.  There's always an audience for this kind of stuff, but it's not a nice audience.


Image: Gretchen Felker-Martin. YouTube screen grab.

But back to McBain....

McBain does the standard book report stuff, retelling some of the plot, which sounds amazingly generic and is distinguished only by being disgusting.  The NPR of the past would not have reviewed a fetish book in its pages.  That was then.  Now McBain supports Felker-Martin's violent appropriation of Rowling's identity:

"This is a woman's body," Beth reminds herself after one of her clients leaves. "This is just a job. It's just a way to keep from being drawn and quartered by the Knights of J.K. Rowling."

And eventually, "the Knights of J.K. Rowling" do come for our protagonists, hard. While the feral men pose a hazard to them — and serve as portents of warning, should Beth and Fran run out of estrogen — the band of TERFs, called "the Legion," are the true villains of the book.

Aside from the nasty content, this is a graduate student paper in some college English lit course.  It's icky and (still true to NPR's old style) pompous.

Mostly, though, what leaks through is the rabid misogyny characterizing men who pretend to be women (the book's author) and women who hate themselves enough to insist that they are men (the book's reviewer).  To both author and reviewer, real women are a terrible threat:

It's obvious the point Felker-Martin is making with the Legion: While everything is heightened within the apocalyptic setting, enforcing gender kills people, That's true today; Manhunt just takes it to an extreme. And today's "gender critical" feminists, as gender theorist Judith Butler has written, are buying into fascism. The TERFs in the book, taken to an ideological end, were vital in amping up the core horrors of the book: the fear of not knowing what will happen to you when someone realizes you're trans, because they think trans people — trans women especially — already are monsters.

For the most part, so-called transgender people are pathetic, mentally ill men and women who deserve sympathy.  However, my sympathy stops and my hostility begins when they attempt to indoctrinate children and when they turn the full force of their misogyny on those women — including Rowling — who realize what a threat transgenderism is to real women.

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