Elon Musk has encouraged all parents to watch the controversial documentary “What Is a Woman?”, created by right-wing political commentator and author Matt Walsh on Twitter today (Friday).
The whole documentary about gender and transgender issues is being screened on Twitter. “Every parent should watch this,” Musk said.
Every parent should watch this https://t.co/pIp6UP6vq8
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 2, 2023
The Twitter owner said the company’s reported rejection of the Daily Wire’s documentary “What Is a Woman?” documentary on the basis of “misgendering” was “a mistake by many people at Twitter. It is definitely allowed.”
“Whether or not you agree with using someone’s preferred pronouns, not doing so is at most rude and certainly breaks no laws,” Musk said on Twitter in a reply to the original thread posted by Daily Wire CEO Jeremy Boreing.
“I should note that I do personally use someone’s preferred pronouns, just as I use someone’s preferred name, simply from the standpoint of good manners. However, for the same reason, I object to rude behavior, ostracism or threats of violence if the wrong pronoun or name is used.”
Screening of “What is a woman?” met with protests
Walsh’s online documentary film What is a Woman?, released by The Daily Wire on June 1, 2022, at the beginning of Pride Month, featured Walsh asking the question “what is a woman?” to various people, and arguing for his own views.
The film discusses sex reassignment surgery, puberty blockers, transgender youth, and transgender athletes in women’s sports.
Walsh had asked the same question in other appearances, including a Dr. Phil show on January 19, 2022, with transgender and non-binary people. On June 14, Walsh published a book based on the documentary, entitled What is a Woman?: One Man’s Journey to Answer the Question of a Generation through DW Books.
The documentary received a divided reception from critics and political commentators. Among those who praised it were Karol Markowicz of the New York Post, who commended the documentary for “expos[ing] the lunacy of pro-trans extremism.”
Kaylee McGhee White of the Washington Examiner said that the film reveals “the effort to erase the female identity and objective truth … harming individuals, their families, and communities.”
Detractors, such as AJ Erkert of Science-Based Medicine and Erin Rook of LGBTQ Nation, denounced the film as “propaganda,” “transphobic lies,” and “science denying.” Erkert compared the documentary to the antiscience films Vaxxed and Expelled.
John Kendall Hawkins of CounterPunch called the film “more conservative silliness”, concluding that it “just adds to the relentless white noise we can’t seem to escape and adds nothing to our humanity. The film is not worth watching, but its posture is worth noting.”
Eventbrite banned screenings of the documentary due to the service not permitting content that promotes “hate, violence, or harassment towards others and/or oneself”. Walsh denied that the documentary was hate speech and criticized Eventbrite for permitting the screening of drag shows that allow children in attendance.
In February 2022, Eli Erlick, a transgender activist, alleged that Walsh had invited dozens of people to participate in the documentary under false pretenses. Kataluna Enriquez, Fallon Fox, and other transgender public figures corroborated the account.
Walsh created a group called the Gender Unity Project, which the activists said attempted to lure them into participating in the film. The Gender Unity Project’s Twitter account and website were taken down shortly after the allegations went public. Erlick claimed there were at least 50 other recruited interviewees, including a 14-year-old transgender girl.
As a part of Walsh’s What is a Woman? college tour, he screened the documentary at University of Houston on October 13, 2022, by invitation from Young Conservatives of Texas. While 435 people attended, police estimated 400 protesters—including trans rights activists—as well as counter-protesters outside.
A screening by Walsh at the University of Wisconsin, sponsored mostly by Young America’s Foundation, was also met by protesters.