The word “bizarre” is becoming shop-worn in articles about the transgender movement, but it’s difficult to find a more accurate and less offensive synonym. The latest incident concerns the hitherto innocuous word “woman”.

Last week the American Civil Liberties Union was pinged for censoring texts from the late Supreme Court Justice and feminist icon Ruth Ginsberg. In tweeting snippets from some of her writing, the ACLU substituted the word “women” with the gender-neutral word “people”. There was an outcry and the ACLU vowed never to do it again.

More creative substitutions under the banner of inclusive language have included “individuals with a cervix”, “people who menstruate”, “people with vulvas”, “menstruators”, “birthing parents”, “pregnant people”, and “gestational parents”.

The most brazen trans-friendly denigration of women, however, was the September 25 cover of The Lancet, one of the world’s leading medical journals.

The cover style for this eminent publication is distinctive and instantly recognisable. It could be called min/max — maximal use of minimalism. Beneath the magazine’s banner is an almost entirely blank page. In the centre of this stark whiteness is a brief quote from an article in the current issue.

No doubt the editorial team deliberates long and hard about which words to choose. Could they be defamatory? Offensive? Biased? Sexist? Racist? Unduly political? Indecorous? After all, defying the conventional wisdom that a book should not be judged by its cover, The Lancet seeks to be defined by its cover.

So it is utterly improbable that the editor, Richard Horton, made a mistake in choosing that week’s quote in an issue devoted to the delicate topic of menstruation. It was: “Historically, the anatomy and physiology of bodies with vaginas have been neglected.”

Is that all women are — “bodies with vaginas”? The phrase was coarse and deliberately offensive. It erased femininity. It reduced women to their genitals – which is basically what pornographers do.

Dr Horton was forced to issue an apology– which was neither healthfelt nor convincing — for conveying “the impression that we have dehumanised and marginalised women”. He explained:

“At the same time, I want to emphasise that transgender health is an important dimension of modern health care, but one that remains neglected. Trans people regularly face stigma, discrimination, exclusion, and poor health, often experiencing difficulties accessing appropriate health care. The exhibition review from which The Lancet cover quote was taken is a compelling call to empower women, together with non-binary, trans, and intersex people who have experienced menstruation, and to address the myths and taboos that surround menstruation.”

Notwithstanding his emollient words, Dr Horton (who is, remember, a man) has clearly dehumanised and marginalised women. Do not hold your breath for the day that his journal’s cover reduces men to their genitals. Like the editors of other leading medical journals, Dr Horton has been enlisted as a useful idiot in the transgender crusade to allow men to colonise women’s bodies.

Acceptance of the notion that gender identity is a mental, rather than a biological, state has advanced the interests of a tiny proportion of males. The growing number of “pregnant men” and the prospect of ectogenesis even threatens to marginalise motherhood, women’s most distinctive capacity.

Transgenderism benefits men, but for women, it has done zilch. Instead, they are expected to demurely avert their eyes as men invade and conquer more and more of their traditional heritage. They are being displaced from their own bathrooms, their own refuges, their own educational institutions, their own sports, their own prison cells. In return for their acquiescence, they get up-voted on Twitter. It’s the deal that the matriarchal Lenapi people got when they sold Manhattan for a handful of trinkets to another man, Peter Minuit.

As J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series and an unrepentant critic of transgender ideology, wrote:

“Never have I seen women denigrated and dehumanised to the extent they are now. From the leader of the free world’s long history of sexual assault accusations and his proud boast of ‘grabbing them by the pussy’, to the incel (‘involuntarily celibate’) movement that rages against women who won’t give them sex, to the trans activists who declare that TERFs need punching and re-educating, men across the political spectrum seem to agree: women are asking for trouble. Everywhere, women are being told to shut up and sit down, or else.”

Last year Dr Howard Bauchner, the editor of JAMA, an equally influential American medical journal, was forced to resign because he was insufficiently sensitive to structural racism. A consistent approach to offensive language would demand a campaign to dismiss Dr Horton for actively promoting structural misogyny.

Michael Cook

Michael Cook is the editor of MercatorNet.