Regarding Bill C-16, it protects gender expression from hate crimes and from discrimination. Peterson’s interpretation — whether accurate or not — is that the refusal to use a person’s chosen gender pronoun, especially in a professional setting, counts as discrimination. I think many trans people would agree that it is discrimination.

Whether it rises to the level of criminal discrimination, however, is another matter.

If Peterson’s interpretation of the law is inaccurate, then at least his misunderstanding of it is reasonable. I can see how he could reasonably come by that interpretation, especially since Canada does not have protected freedom of speech like the U.S. does.

— — —

As for his “enforced monogamy” comments.

I think Peterson is correct that these “incels” can be dangerous. They’re frustrated and they’re entitled, a combination that turns them misogynistic over time if they weren’t already misogynistic to start with. They lean right-wing and are easily influenced, manipulated, and radicalized by extremist media.

But the whole enforced monogamy thing is just absurd.

For one thing, he’s ignoring the fact that these incels are losers who are only single because they feel entitled to women who are out of their league. There are, sadly, plenty of women out there who would be willing to settle for them, if they would just be willing to settle in return — though, for the sake of those women, I would hope that they would refrain from doing so.

Another problem with his ideas about enforced monogamy is that it’s blatantly hypocritical in light of his views on the free market.

A direct quote from Peterson:

“It isn’t what you deserve for intrinsic reasons that determines your outcome. It’s the worth that others attribute to your offerings.”

This falls in line with something else Peterson speaks a lot about — how he’s in favor of equality of opportunity, and wholly opposed to opportunity of outcome.

But his comments about enforced monogamy seem to be a startling deviation from that. There’s nothing free market about enforced monogamy.

Writer.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store