The 2022 version of the classic false premise question, “when did you stop beating your wife?” is:
“What is the definition of ‘woman’?”
Hilariously, it’s catching out all sorts of people. To be fair to the left wing politicians and Supreme Court nominees, it is an absolute gotchya question, designed to trip you up.
The two popular answers are, “adult human female” and “anyone who identifies as a woman”, and either will get you into huge trouble on social media and neither are particularly satisfactory.
The first is somewhat circular as it relies on another inferred definition, “female”. What’s a woman? It’s a female. What’s a female? It’s a woman. Turtles all the way down.
The second makes the usual error of the left-leaning in that it assumes we can over-rule or or completely discount human nature and response to incentives as a factor. Probably a billion family trees have ended abruptly due to that mistake and several women have been raped in female only prisons in the last few years for the same reason.
The husband and wife biologists on the Dark Horse podcast have an interesting discussion on their latest episode where they explore the underpinning biological reality of sex in our species and others. It’s an educational chat and debunks some of the more insane hot takes to be found on the digital Beldam that is social media. But it still misses the mark.
What we need is a pithy, definitive reply to the question. One that deals with the existence of the extremely rare genetic mutations we class as intersex and the increasingly vocal category we used to categorise as gender dysphoria but now call “stunning and brave” and invite into primary schools to read stories to pre-pubescent children.
The correct answer when asked the question, “what is the definition of ‘woman’?” is, in the words of Justice Potter Stewart:
“I know it when I see it”.
Remember our handy heuristic; If you find your inner voice saying something along the lines of, “Christ, that’s an ugly man/woman“, it’ll be because they aren’t.
Use that as the basis of your response. Trust the tools evolution has equipped you with. If someone wants to play language games with you, put it back to them; “show me a picture of someone whose sex is unclear to you and I’ll try help you work it out for that specific case”.
Of course, this answer is probably more helpful to those who’d normally answer, “adult human female” than the other answer, but I’ll put it out there for royalty-free usage anyway.