Don't Listen to Jordan Peterson
Updated: Mar 24
Don't let Jordan Peterson invalidate you. Jordan Peterson is a very divisive figure, that's for certain. He is undoubtedly a very intelligent man, so why is he referred to as "a smart man, for stupid people" so often? Allow me to explain; he is referred to this way because his entire livelihood (and his entire status as a right-wing celebrity figure) depends completely on his fanbase lacking critical thinking skills.
The video posted above is one I've seen shared a lot, so let's break it down.
Right off the bat, Joe Rogan refers to Peterson as an expert, and also refers to scientific literature; establishing in your minds that JBP knows what he's talking about. Now, immediately JBP, the expert, comes out with some expert shit. He mentions the autogynephilic male. This is a term that most people are not going to be familiar with, so he explains it in layman's terms. That's great, and makes him easy to follow. It's also the easiest way for him to manipulate you.
The autogynephilic male is a cisgendered male that is sexually attracted to adult females. For whatever reason, their brains have also built an attraction to themselves, which leads to them thinking that they look the prettiest when they are made up in a feminine way, and yes they often do have a sexual attraction to themselves when they are dressed in drag. While this is odd, there is absolutely nothing dangerous about these people. Nothing, and there is zero evidence to suggest that there is. JBP isn't stupid enough to call it a fetish, but he is happy to use language to imply that it is so. He is happy to mix sexual fantasies and children in a way that make you feel absolutely disgusted - and it worked in a lot of cases, true or not.
So, first he misrepresents the literature he clings to, and then there's his first blatant lie that he told; Autogynephilic males are NOT doing Drag Queen Story Hour. They are straight up not. Straight male drag queens are beyond incredibly rare. I wasn't able to find much data on the subject, but none of the data I could find supported his words in any way whatsoever. I even polled 2 large drag communities, and spoke to a sex researcher personally and could not find any evidence of straight drag queens even existing. Now, we know they do exist, but they make up such an astronomically small part of the drag community that it's insane to attack them, imply that they are perverts, and imply that they are somehow dangerous to children. There is no evidence of this, and there is absolutely zero correlation with this and harming children. These people are exclusively attracted to adult females, it's literally a requisite part of this typology, which I am certain Peterson is well aware of.
So what do you think is more likely here, that Jordan Peterson is blatantly misunderstanding the basic concepts of the literature he is quoting, or that he is twisting it to force a certain narrative?? Neither are very becoming of an expert.
So who is doing "Drag Queen Story Hour"?? Well it's the second group that he describes. Drag Queens are almost exclusively cis-gendered homosexual males participating in gender non-conformity. The absolute VAST majority of this group do not identify as transgendered, nor do they transition. JBP's implication that these children are being "plucked" and then "sterilized and mutilated" is completely unfounded and not based on any science or data whatsoever. I don't even know what he means when he says the LGBTQ community can't recover from this. Literally nobody in that community doesn't realize that those who make the decision to transition are often living as homosexual males prior. Nobody. We're not breaking ground, we're not even forming coherent or factual talking points, we are simply pushing the narrative that the trans boogeyman is abducting and harming children.
See, there's also no evidence that either "group" (this sort of typology's validity is also very questionable in science by the way) is of any danger to children, yet he's mixed it in with his expertise and misrepresentation of literature in a way to push outrage. He has succeeded. When he says "every clinician worth his salt" he is lying, because that is also not what the data says, nor what the scientific community says, or has been saying. I know, I know, he claims he is a victim of conspiracy, and that the liberals have "infiltrated" education and science to push their Marxist agenda. I'm not even willing acknowledge that one, but I know it's a defense he falls back on.
I do suggest reading the literature and research done by Kenneth Zucker, and another guy named Ray Blanchard though. While these guys have both been harmful in their own ways, they've done a lot of really interesting things. The most interesting parts you'll see is how JBP is willing to lean on them as "experts" to push his narrative, despite the fact that a lot of their research does not support his viewpoints either. You'll see that he is cherry picking data based on feelings. I hope someone sees the irony there.
If you look at it simply, the modus operandi of Jordan Peterson is actually brilliant. This is why I will never deny that he is a very smart and talented man. I'd like to take a quick second here and break down his tactic:
Step 1: Say something that you know your fanbase will not understand
Step 2: Dumb it down in a way that your fanbase will understand
Step 3: Present the "dumbed down" version in a biased way that will trigger an emotional response. Creating imaginary child victims is a tried and true technique of JBP.
Boom, as a celebrity he's just spread his opinion across the globe, under the pretense of it being fact based. The sad thing about this is the way he completely takes advantages of his fans. He literally banks on your not being smart enough to understand the "smart" stuff he says, and being too emotionally fragile to approach his "dumbed down" version with any critical thinking skills whatsoever. The reason he has been discredited by the scientific community is because his statements often don't even stand up to the most surface level of scrutiny. The other reason is because he is constantly stepping into territory he doesn't belong. For example I cringe every time he talks about neurology - most people just assume "this guy knows everything about the brain" but he has zero education in neurology, and the neurological community is constantly having to say "sigh, no, that's not right."
Jordan Peterson has absolutely no interest in educating, learning, or even truth. Jordan Peterson is entirely about maintaining his status as a celebrity, and pushing his own narratives. The man is either incompetent, or lies constantly... and we know he's incredibly intelligent. So if you've let any of the harmful shit he's said about neurological conditions, sexuality, addiction (I could write an entire post about his hypocrisy on addiction), gender, or social expectations bother you... do your best not to. If the man was credible he wouldn't have to lie, misrepresent data, or use psychological tricks to trigger people into knee-jerk reactions. These are the techniques of a manipulator, and a manipulator deserves no attention or validation.
Thanks for reading, and don't let guys like this bother you.