Chicago, IL 60605
January 22, 2004
- Professor J. Michael Bailey
Department of Psychology
- Dear Professor Bailey:
- I've been meaning for some time to reiterate something I
wrote in my
letter to the Reader in response to the story there some weeks
the controversy (I think you and I, both, have a legitimate complaint
against the photo editor, btw!).
- I want to give you fair notice that I regard a diagnosis-in-absentia
"autogynephilia" as slander/libel, and will bring suit
against you the
next time I detect you employing it with reference to me in any
forum. I have as you know objections of a technical as well as
political sort to the notion (none of which, I'm sorry to say,
troubled to confront); but that is not the point here. The point
that you have claimed in your own usage that "autogynephiles"
various ways sick; you claim to be able to diagnose the sickness
glance, or at a distance; and therefore in claiming that I "show
of the sickness you are pinning me with a damaging label. You
intend it to be damaging---for example, you claim that people
diagnosed are unreliable reporters of their own experience, in
language, liars; and, worse, that they are in sickness to be
with pedophiles. That your colleagues in sex science as a whole
the "diagnosis" of anyone having the "sickness"
as false or
scientifically meaningless only makes your application of it
personally all the more objectionable. The people in whose presence
slander me cannot be expected to know the details of sexology,
scientific standing in this matter. They assume it is a real
and that you are not being reckless in making it.
- I have no wish to spring this on you unaware, or entrap you
way. You have got yourself into quite enough trouble without
from me, and I have no wish to add to your sorrows. I am willing
charity to overlook the two previous occasions (to my present
on which you have applied in public the term to me. Perhaps you
then understand that your speech was libel. I seek in this letter
relief from future misbehavior, which you can give without us
law. You are of course entitled to your scientific opinions,
and as far
as I am concerned may advocate a theory I regard as scientifically
mistaken and politically obnoxious in any forum you choose: unlike
I assert no right to decide scientific question unilaterally.
But I do
have a right under American law to an unsullied reputation, and
this notice I find you again referring to me as "autogynephilic"
will have shown your reckless disregard for the truth (since
seriously claim in a court of law that you can diagnosis people
meeting them; and I believe that under Illinois law you are not
event licensed to practice psychology) and your intent to damage
can expect to hear from my lawyer.
- Deirdre McCloskey
- cc. Michael J. Dudek, Attorney at Law