LGBT+ Separatism; or “Why I’m Sick of Society”

By Daviemoo

This article is mainly aimed at fellow LGBT+ people- but I’d encourage you to read it if you aren’t part of our group, and rather than get offended, upset or confused about it- write to your MP and question why people in the LGBT+ are increasingly feeling this societal disconnection and how they can remedy it. As hate crime and deadly rhetoric ramps up, if your issue is to blame a symptom like LGBT+ people feeling fed up instead of the disease of virulent hate spreading through society like cancer in lymph nodes… you aren’t the ally you may think.

I came out at 15. Before I came out, I was petrified I’d be outed. I grew up knowing I was gay, or at least that I liked other men. I would have done anything not to be outed- then a friend at school I’d trusted started telling people behind my back and I thought, fuck it, people are going to find out. Why don’t I just rip off the bandaid. So I told everyone.

Turns out that was a good decision. Suddenly people couldn’t bully or offend me any more. “Ha, gayboy” was met with “yeah moron, I told you that…”. Suddenly I realised I’d been desperate for people to accept me for who I wasn’t, but I didn’t care if they didn’t accept me for who I was.
I had a renaissance with myself- finally I liked me for who I genuinely was, and I set about trying to do two things: make amends for my pre-coming out idiocy, and ensure that other people like me felt safe and happy enough to be themselves too.

When I went to college I tried and failed to set up an LGBT+ group. Only one other person came despite a multitude of people coming out to me- as bi, as trans, as curious.
That was fine; it was a strange time where society was largely okay with it- but woe betide you if you went home and told your family.
The reasoning behind working hard to set up groups, open chains of communication and be visible as an out gay teen was to spread awareness- and acceptance of- LGBT+ people as what we are: normal.
Honestly? The least exciting thing about me is that I like men with big chests and arms- the way heterosexual men treat videos of other men in the gym, I’m certainly not the only one. I just like them a bit more than you.
I realised, to my joy, that if you got offended when I mentioned my sexuality, that was very much a you problem- not to mention those who complained sometimes ended up being, to coin a modern phrase, a bit fruity.

On to uni and continually trying to join groups, meet others and spread more awareness that LGBT+ people are just people with an acronym you might not share. Things seemed to be going well. I remember the halcyon days of going quite literal years at a time without so much as a raised eyebrow over my sexuality, I remember the happy societal shift away from the phrases “sexual preference” (I don’t prefer men, I am incapable of being sexually attracted to women) or “tolerance” (I tolerate a sore neck until I can take painkillers, I prefer acceptance thanks). Things seemed to be on the up and up.

Then we come to the modern day.

I remember watching the trans panic start. Now, I already had a good friend who was trans. She came out to me on valentines day in 2013(?) with a huge garbled message, which ended with “and if you can’t accept this then I understand but I wanted you to know”. I laughed- why wouldn’t I accept my friend… I loved her, her gender was irrelevant. She told me about her feelings, her life, what was going on with her and it brought us closer together. I was just happy she was happy.
Watching people on the internet occasionally write salacious and stupid rumours around trans people was weird- picking out the story of the one transgender sex offender in a 900 mile radius was a weird argument to me considering if you took a long walk you’d walk past about 50 cisgender offenders- so I raised an eyebrow, but I figured someone had kicked a hornets nest of ignorance and they’d be distracted by sexy M&Ms or gas stoves before long (had to wait til 2023 for that).

But it didn’t die off. Instead what started as an online movement of people who say things like “biology not bigotry” yet making fun of the way people look whilst sharing photos of people with mastectomy scars, writing utter fiction to get angry about or blaming the crimes of non trans men on trans women continued to grow exponentially.
Then, inevitably, because trans people are accepted largely in the entire community- suddenly the accusations spread. Even yesterday, Bev Jackson who started the LGB alliance was begging slavishly on twitter for someone who tweeted that “the trans stuff” has made him go against gay marriage to realise that the movement she pushes every day is only meant to ruin some people’s lives, not hers.
“Groomer” is normalised parlance about anyone who is LGBT+ or supports us. In America states are legislating against trans healthcare, the parents of transgender people, drag performances and drag queens even being visible- as if men haven’t been in drag since quite literally Shakespeare’s day, as if I couldn’t go into my local city on a Friday night and find 30 cishet men in dresses as “banter” or “jokes”, as if men haven’t been pantomime dames, as if drag hasn’t been a subversive form of expression in our community for decades- And as if trans people haven’t existed in society for hundreds of years too. Suddenly this panic over our long existence has been fanned from embers to a towering inferno of societal ignorance, leaving people like me blinking in the light and heat.

Still, I hoped that there was a way to have rational discussion with people who had increasing fervour against our community.
That hope quickly died out.

I used to both want and need acceptance from the odd, flawed cishet patriarchal society in which I’ve been raised- a society I never used to question. I used to want to be able to walk down the street holding hands with another man and have nobody raise an eyebrow, talk behind their hands or call me a slur. I was praying (very atheistically) for the day that nobody gave a shit.
That hope is gone. I think people will always be bothered by my sexuality, by people’s gender expression or lack thereof. And what a sad realisation that was- that ignorance will continue and be permitted in a society too lazy to confront its shittiest members. I’ve watched- in the last month alone- people stand at microphones and state calmly that people like me should be executed, seen footage of bloody handprints left by bleeding humans mowed down by extremists walking into our spaces and snuffing us out, and I’ve heard lawmakers who don’t even understand the complications of chromosomes, gender, hormones, sex characteristics and intersex health conditions pass legislation that strips us of basic access to our rights or prevents us from pursuing our livelihoods as performers. And it’s clearly not enough for us to have the meagre spaces afforded to us by those who purchase bars and deck them out for us- we aren’t even safe in there between those who stand outside with weapons and those who walk in with them.

The difference is, I’m no longer viscerally upset by this. I don’t care any more because I don’t seek, or want, acceptance. I just need it to live in peace- and wanting and needing something is very distinct.

As these ridiculous scenarios have continued to spiral I’ve found myself more and more tired of being asked to be tolerant of narrow minded views of my community, been told we should sit and have constructive conversations with people who hold banners accusing us of paedophilia or grooming, and coming from the side who forces religion, dress code, mannerisms and more on their offspring it’s more than just a hair ironic. And I’m tired of watching a world where these ignorant, shouty fucks seem to be gaining ground- but the cherry on top is also being consistently surprised when people I think I can trust, from politicians to celebrities who take the crown of “ally” for themselves, to friends, suddenly break cover and reveal their own participation in this forest fire of ignorance.
This is why I’ve coined the phrase that inspired this article.

LGBT+ separatism

The entire idea behind LGBT+ separatism is to teach young LGBT+ people that societal acceptance is, for many of us, a need so we can live in peace- but it is not something to want beyond that. We should not want to participate in a society rooted in misogyny, built and paid for with white supremacy and which actively treats us with varying degrees of scorn, sympathy or vitriolic hatred.

LGBT+ people don’t choose our identities. When I was a child if you’d given me the ability to change my sexuality I’d have done it in a heartbeat. Now, I’ve been gay for so long and it’s so deeply wrapped around my perception of the world and how I’m treated I don’t think I’d ever change it even if it meant the difficulties that come with it being removed. But so often the argument of choice is levelled at us. People are genuinely foolish enough to believe someone wakes up one day and rashly decides they’re a different gender or that they like their same-gender friend as more than a friend. It doesn’t happen that way for the vast majority of us, and if you’re in executive control of your sexuality or gender then you’re different than I- but choice or not, it’s worthy of respect, rights and equality.

I’m aware of the dangers of this movement- becoming lax about the necessity of acceptance is a byproduct of this type of disillusionment and we can never lose sight of the idea that society does have to offer us some acceptance, simply to ensure our existences are not threatened and legislated against. The goal is not to move away from striving for that, demanding and making the case for progress in our safety- it is simply to offer an alternative to being exposed to the daily humdrum of this flawed society.

The ideal scenario would be an island populated only by LGBT+ people, where we only interact with each other. A pipe dream of course, but one I sometimes find myself imagining.

People will, of course, assume I think our community is perfect and we’d create some utopic existence. I do not. I am aware of the problems in our community, mostly perpetuated by white cis gay men like myself. It’s my sincere belief that we’d be able to confront and deal with these issues if we created this separatist society- but lets be honest, it’s a pipe dream anyway, and I as a cis het man benefit from natural high status in our community- and I fucking hate that that is the case. Our community is a microcosm of wider societal ignorance and gender, skin colour, ability etc shouldn’t (and I would hope wouldn’t) dictate societal superiority in that world.

My intermediary wish is for us to create pathways to withdraw from participation in this society as much as possible, to form our own subculture, our own ways of navigating outside the mainstream- like rocks at the bottom of a rushing river and the network between them, I want to move through life surrounded by those who also seek refuge from this ridiculous society.
Some would call this an echo chamber- name it how you will, disparage it if you must. Your participation in a society that necessitates this type of action is the reason for its existence.

How we achieve this, I wish I knew. There would be, must be, should be ways for us to create this network, methods to create rules that apply, resources we can rely on that can create a buffer between us, if we number enough, and wider society- the generation of a sub culture specifically designed, catered for and administrated by the wider LGBT+ community.
But I don’t know for sure. I just know that as society continues to demonstrate its malignant denigration of us, I continue to become more enthusiastic over finding a workable alternative for a community who has suffered endlessly under religion, under heterosexual cisgender politicians and entitled, deluded public figures who aren’t even in our community but seek to command control over what it is, who is in it and how we live.

This is a cisgender, heterosexual person commenting on an article saying specifically that more people are identifying in England and Wales as LGB+.

When it comes to the LGB alliance, the only answer those in our community stupid enough to try and seek acceptance from those who continue to hate us ever give me when I ask exactly what they have done for our community is – “They support the rights of people to be same-sex attracted”. So not stopping the government deporting LGB people (which, by the way, trans people can also be), to countries that will cut their heads off? Not lobbying the government for strengthening of equality laws to ensure that we don’t suffer discrimination like I did in the workplace? Just a movie nobody saw and making you feel like you’re justified in your bigotry? That’s not helpful. They did however publish a tweet suggesting gay marriage was pointless because “not enough” of us use it. I was unaware there was a quota for when gay marriage is a good idea, or that it was a finite resource we all needed to get for ourselves.

When it comes to the enablers of bigotry above, or the people who embody that bigotry with their stance against us, if they don’t want us in their society- fine. I get it. I don’t wan’t them in society either. Small difference being I’d like them to educate themselves into not being arseholes and some of them want me to be imprisoned just for being alive.

You see the difference? I want ignoramii to fill their empty brain cells with knowledge of why bigotry isn’t cool- bigots want us to be imprisoned or killed. There’s a difference.
I wish we were like oil and water, that I would sink past the phobic in the world and be able to move on with my day without even realising they were there.
So my question to the community is: is it possible? Is it workable? Can we do it?

There will, inevitably, be backlash to me even writing these words- people accusing me of heterophobia or cisphobia. To that I’d like you to accept one very large, long eye-rolling movement from me.
If you dislike me for my sexuality, please dont be surprised that I dislike you for your opinions. And if you are a homophobe, why the hell do you want my approval any more than I’d want yours?
Overall, the accusations of cisphobia are dumb (im cis…) and heterophobia are laughable- much like a white Brit claiming to be experiencing racism because a black person calls them cracker- feel offended by this article all you want- then turn around and walk out your front door into a society and a country that accepts you entirely, that doesn’t cause you issues based on your identity and understand that the reason your shoulders don’t sag when you leave your home is because you emerge into a society that is made for you- a luxury many of us don’t experience.

I am tired of being part of a group that is demonised for its worst members or its imagined crimes by a group who refuses to get its own house in order. I am sick to my back teeth of institutions like the Church, thick with well defended paedophiles and based on a book that condones slavery, rape and forced marriage or misogynistic nonsense being held up as a moral authority, over a community who are forced to gather in the dark spaces we’re reluctantly given. And most of all I’m tired of trying to cater to a society who believes people like us are wrong because it is too narrow to realise that an identity that isn’t a carbon copy of their own is not wrong.

Overall my aim in writing this piece is to start the process of making links with others who feel the same and beginning the process of forming the links to build a separatist network. Your gender, skin colour, age, disability does not matter in this group- it is simply about founding a community in a new sub culture that exists within the bowels of this corrupt system in which we’re trapped and offering solace in a world we are forced to participate in- but no longer wish to.

Talking about LGBT+ people isn’t ruining your children- you are

By Daviemoo

Day after day, I see more brain dead ramblings from people who think that there is no way to explain gay people existing to children without bringing out a blow up phallus. Lets go through the arguments and make, and I use this word loosely, “sense” of them because – as a gay man- I have had enough.

It will traumatise them

It absolutely flabbergasts me that people think they can bring children up in religious doctrine and that’s normal, but telling them about LGBT+ people is the final straw.
So your kid can believe an all powerful being is looking after uncle Jerry after he plowed his car into a tree on his way home from a bar, that god sits there peering off a cloud watching people exist and that if that child does something wrong god will let them be tortured for all of eternity in fire- but telling them two men who were holding hands in the street are gay is what’s going to mess them up? The cognitive dissonance astounds me daily. LGBT+ people do exist, and acknowledging this simple fact prepares your child for a life of very occasionally encountering LGBT+ people in their daily/weekly life: we’ll be their doctors, hairdressers, accountants, baristas… You don’t have to teach them to like it, but “I can’t teach my child facts because it’s counter to my beliefs” is really fucking funny to hear people say unironically.

They’re too young to understand

If they’re old enough to see two teenagers necking on in a bus stop, they’re old enough to understand that sometimes that might be a boy and a girl, a girl and a girl, a boy and a boy, two non binary people or any combination of these things. You don’t have to break out the action man and barbie figures and start smashing them together like you’re trying to reconstruct the large hadron collider experiments for children to grasp that sometimes people of different genders like each other.

“It’s grooming”

The amount of people who don’t think adult men tickling little girls or asking children if they’ve got partners jokingly or encouraging boys to bully girls to express their feelings are all normal behaviours, and yet think acknowledging LGBT+ people’s existences is grooming is increasing, and increasingly confusing. Grooming is normalising sexual behaviour with people who aren’t legally, mentally and physically prepared for it and should be protected from it at all costs. It’s a pretty fucking dark accusation. It’s also bullshit. If you’re ok with showing them sleeping beauty where a guy KISSES AN UNCONSCIOUS WOMAN, maybe ask yourself about your priorities VERY closely because “gay people sometimes exist” and “look, maybe some day a man will kiss YOU when you’re asleep” are actually not the same message. If you don’t get upset with half naked people writhing provocatively on a Jean Paul-Gaultier perfume advert, you can also not get upset about gay existence, because one is sexual and I would posit close to grooming and one isn’t- and it’s not the ones you think.

It might make them think they are

So? So what? Are you that afraid your child might not be the carbon copy of you that you were desperate to create when you mounted your wife like a drunk raccoon, and you think that means your existence was meaningless? If your child briefly wonders if they might be gay or trans just because they see a gay or trans person so what! If they’re not- they won’t pursue it, and if they are maybe immediately rejecting them based on that isn’t because you “failed”, but because you’re a bad parent…

It makes me uncomfortable

“I can’t cope with the literal fact that other types of humans exist” is not a compelling argument for not educating your children. It makes me uncomfortable to hear people talk about my sex life on tv, it makes me uncomfortable that people wear crocs in public and yknow what I do? Move on.

I think it’s an adult topic

Exactly how do you see this conversation going? “sometimes men like women, sometimes men like men” is quite a simple sentence. If you’re the ones who have to go into excruciating detail about where genitals go, what genitals are and who does what with them, its because you suffer from a terminal lack of nuance- that’s not LGBT+ peoples’ fault. If you don’t want to talk to your kids about it, don’t. But they will learn elsewhere, sooner or later, and leaving that to the world then getting mad about it is a pretty stupid look. And again, you can acknowledge LGBT+ people without having an adult conversation with your kids- it’s like, super simple.

I think it’s wrong

Ok? All the more reason for you to educate your children I guess but sure, hide us from them, lets see how that goes when little Timmy discovers he likes little Ben as more than a friend and has nobody he can confide in because his parents suck.

I have to wonder what people who endlessly moan about the LGBT+ and our existence think we feel when we look at them. Listening to people who waste their lives complaining about us gives me frustration but mostly makes me nonplussed. If you want to spend your entire life angry that other people exist, I can’t stop you. But I do wonder how much happier these people would be if they’d stop imagining my sex life.
We’re constantly told we “force it on people” because we wear flags to denote our existence- the same way you guys wear union jacks… its our identity and we like to share that… I’ll stop wearing mine if you drop yours?
We’re always accused of being everywhere- that is LITERALLY life now. Your hairdresser? Lesbian. The guy at the bank who approved your loan? Trans. The person who checked you in at the airport three weeks ago? Bisexual. Your admission that you can’t cope with the fact that other people exist is not a good look, and yet people continue to open throatedly confess that they dislike literal fact.

I wouldn’t even mind people constantly being arseholes about me and mine if we didn’t literally pay for society to cater to these losers. Ah you feel free speech is threatened because I exist? What do you propose you do about it? You want me to be prevented from talking about myself and my life? Uh, so you’re not really a free speech advocate then I guess. Cut my taxes to the bone, because if I’m not treated as a full member of society I shouldn’t be paying for it.

Honestly, society continues to confound me: people think that now is the peak of human civilisation and we can’t even go two weeks without threatening to drop bombs on each other. We have much growing to do, and we aren’t going to be able to do that until we stop causing division over nonsense. People continue to conflate my community with paedophilia to the detriment of actual victims of paedophilia, regardless of the sexual orientation or gender of the criminal involved. If you think our existence is the end of society, you may want to reflect on the simple fact that we’ve existed as long as you have and society still keeps on going, and perhaps it’s your wilful entitlement as “the right type of person” that’s causing division and societal friction and not the people who exist amongst you and just want to be able to kiss their partner without a bunch of yeehaws crying about it.

If you’re incapable of having a talk with your child about sexuality or gender without making it weird, if you can’t even bring yourself to acknowledge us to your child, it’s not because we’re awful evil people- it’s because you’re a bad parent, failing to prepare their child for a world in which we exist just as surely as they do and a world in which, regardless of your sentiments towards our community we deserve to exist unmolested.

Living as a minority is fucking exhausting these days.

By Daviemoo

The never ending discourse that minorities are subjected to about their identity is absolutely exhausting.
When I was in my mid teens, the amount of discourse around gayness was tailing off after many, many years of our time in the societal panic spotlight. I’ve mentioned before that we almost seemed to experience something of a renaissance in white gay culture, a time where nobody cared or thought about us and it felt very liberating to just be able to get on with life without any of the inane rambling.
Now, we seem to be back in the spotlight along with other minorities and the endless pathologisation is exhausting, and I would love for those outside of our experience to imagine how mind numbing it is to be subjected to this over and over.

There’s this thing that happens when you exist as a minority where you feel the need to speak out about something, and are instantly shushed. We all know what I’m about to say- from “why does everything need to be about race” to “you don’t have to talk about being gay constantly” or the monosyllabic ranting around gender, for every time you open your mouth to speak somewhere an ignorant person is desperate to tell you to close it. This is, though, especially ironic when the person or people telling you to quieten down have profiles or existences dedicated to the ongoing denigration of people just like you- from racists who would be out of work without the existence of people of colour to people like Maya Forstater who seems to do nothing but go from anti LGBT+ event to anti LGBT+ event. We can’t turn off whatever it is that makes you dislike us, and bigots can- could- should deal with their bigotry, but I have so often seen people of that creed reject founded evidence of their wrongness in favour of believing incorrect beliefs. In fact, if we’re mentioning Forstater let’s talk about the idea that Gender Critical beliefs are a protected characteristic because even if you present gender critical people with empirical evidence they are incorrect they will still hold the belief in the face of it being wrong. There is an ever growing tranche of evidence linking far right activism including anti vaccination and white supremacist rallies to gender critical activism and we can see why: Look at how the anti vaccine movement has stopped talking about autism in the face of billions and billions of COVID Vaccinations yielding not one additional case of autism- it’s the same conspiracy-esque nonsense as trans people secretly being funded by George Soros to “trans” peoples kids.
How is one meant to argue the case with people to whom fact means nothing. Judith Butler has often spoken out about those who will try to “silence” dissenting minorities, as if stopping adults from talking about their gender or sexuality would stop children from experiencing their own awakenings; trans people existed before 1990, as did gay people and quietening those voices does nothing to stop that. Let us not forget Butler’s Guardian article in early 2022, which featured a prediction of far right allyship with Gender Critical movements. Though this section of the article was removed, the truth of its words rang out and were ratified only last month when Butler’s prediction came true.

For most of us, identity is incidental. If we lived in a normal world, my being gay wouldn’t have been a big deal so I probably wouldn’t think about it much. But we don’t live in a normal world. We live in a world where stranger A’s being transgender offends stranger B so much that stranger B literally lobbies against stranger A being able to exist in society: we live in a world where a gay person existing on TV is so offensive to some non gay people that they will boycott shows just to avoid looking at someone who isn’t even doing anything adult- just existing as a gay person.

Now, the irony here is that it’s quite often the people complaining about these things who talk about how people like me are soft, sensitive snowflakes because we don’t like having our identity questioned and pathologised- but I hardly think it’s the people who don’t like spurious accusations of mental illness and perversion levelled act them that are the weak ones, over people who physically cannot tolerate seeing affection expressed between two consenting adults. But it’s an irony that is so often passed over, because acknowledgement of this presents a threat to the heteronormative status quo: if you question why straight men are so sensitive they can’t even see two men kiss, they will likely lose their temper, or immediately spit out nonsense in retaliation.

My personal favourite overused archetype at the moment is the “I’m not *insert flavour of bigotry here* BUT”.
“I’m not homophobic BUT I don’t support gay people’s right to get married”.
So you don’t think it’s homophobic to allow me to have equal rights to you? “You do, you could marry a woman”. Yes I could- do you condone me marrying a woman knowing I have no intention to follow what the normative model of that is…? Also under equal marriage, you have the right to marry another man- ah, you don’t want to because that doesn’t interest you. Interesting…
The most fascinating part of the “I’m not X bigotry BUT” types is almost a tacit acknowledgement that it’s wrong to be bigoted so they try to distance themselves from it whilst also rationalising a viewpoint that proves they are.
I’d posit that it’s possible to hold one, maybe even two ‘mildly’ bigoted opinions about a minority without being wholly a bigot, but it’s best to just unpick those opinions because having bigoted opinions does not help you in any way.
But the way in which bigoted people will try to remove themselves from the idea of being a bigot whilst perpetuating its existence is almost comical.

This seems to happen a lot with anti trans people. “I’m not transphobic” is said so often to me that I could genuinely use it as white noise, second only to “but what did she SAY that’s transphobic”. It’s a bad faith argument. When you’re told by multiple members of a minority that something is bigoted, why fight that? It isn’t affecting your free speech, you can still say it, but you will also be judged for it. If you’re being told that what you say is offensive you have options:
-Accept that what you have said is bigoted, apologise, acknowledging this is wrong and try to do your own work to unpick the thought patterns that led to this thought’s formation
-Accept that what you have said is bigoted but refuse to do the work, believing that it is your right to hold this view even if it is considered “wrong” societally
-Deny that what you have said is bigoted and explain it further, possibly alleviating the problem or making it worse dependant on your defence

-Deny that what you have said is bigoted and refuse to engage on the topic further

It is this key confusion I wish I could unpick. People seem to want to live in a world where they can both say the bigoted opinion AND escape culpability for having it.

A narrow minded opinion is not just a handcuff, it’s a ball and chain: if you want to have the opinion, you must be shackled to it’s consequences: any attempt to hold a bigoted opinion without ownership of it’s negative connotations is proof you are aware that the opinion is incorrect and is not defensible.

The relentless discourse around identity is part, I am almost sure, of human nature. It is human to examine, deconstruct and question identity- from the first moment one human saw another human. walking around in clothes, or choose to farm instead of hunt all the way to now, variation has been part of human existence and many of us spend immense amounts of time unpicking the human experience through the lenses of others: the idea that identity is a binary is laughably reductive in the face of all of human history. From body types, skin colour, gender to the more ephemeral concept of music taste, artistic level, hobbies and interests and so on, humanity is vast and varied: to deny this and to shrink identity to “right” or “wrong” based on its marriage to your own identity is bizarre. The problem is, culture is linked to the popular. White, blonde, fairly affluent right wing people seem to be the largest demographic (this is false, there are more varied and liberal people in western societies) based on social media and media presented to us by states and national interests. The reason that the more varied side fails often to stake its’ representation properly is that, within that vast and varied group there is still a reductive argument about identity that persists, alongside the idea that there is or are a way or ways in which to exist which is “correct”: this is false.

Every person has a mode of existence that suits them. Unfortunately, some people’s mode of existence intersects negatively with others. People who kill, people who hurt others, bigots etc- these people negatively impact on other people’s mode of existence. This is not acceptable, and whilst neither a wholly “live and let live” mindset is fully helpful, it is more conducive to a prosperous society than enforced rules of living that do not fit a certain proportion of people.

There is no “correct way” to exist, because each person is so fundamentally different from the last, though often having overlaps that to apply a unifying theory to existence is wholly pointless.

Looking at gender: many societies have followed similar but not wholly same methods of gender expression for many years. That doesn’t mean those methods are correct as much as that, at the time, they were considered appropriate: from Geishas in Japan as an expression of femininity to Boudica, stripped bare for statues- these are expressions of gender just as surely as petticoats, little black dresses and more. Society changes in huge, varied ways which lead to a retrospective interest in their originations: Think of it in terms of medicine. The reason that so many anti vaxxers exist is that many see medicine as it exists now as the “peak” of modernity: medicine can’t get any better, so any “new” medicine, like vaccines etc are not acceptable or safe: this is based on the idea that medicine doesn’t grow and change. Vaccines have been performed en masse since the late 1800s and whilst they, like every single medical procedure from dentistry to appendectomies have resulted in deaths, the numbers are small. Every time you have a medical procedure you should be aware of the potential for harm: vaccines are no exception.
I have no doubt that in 200 years, if humans don’t wipe themselves out, the way in which we treat cancers etc now will be viewed as just as brutal and unsafe as we view war wound amputations from the 1800s. This is the same for understandings of and ways to go about expressing gender, including the medical side- but one can also look at anything and see societal understanding adapt and grow through time. It genuinely functions the same: Archaic expressions of gender are seen as quaint, and our reductive understanding of gender and its expression now will, again, be seen as primitive if humanity continues to flourish.

But in examining these modes of existence we zoom so far out as to miss the micro-strands of daily existence and humanity woven between these existences, so to zoom back in and to get back to the original point, being under that constant level of scrutiny is wholly exhausting.

One reason I feel this could be the case is that those who live under “social norms” or who feel the need (like transphobic trans people) to reaffirm social norms even in the face of their own existence, feel their existence is threatened when someone exists outside of their reconciliation of their own identity.
In particular, gay men who rail against any man who does not conform to their idea of masculine seem often to be filled with a certain type of discomfort that, because a feminine man exists he will also be tarred with femininity. This leads into a broader discussion of what exactly is wrong with femininity or conversely why a “masculine” woman is problematic, but it’s original concept is that to be a man who does not conform to what another man’s expectation is cannot be a man. Norms are simply the base understanding we originate from, but do not have to be the finality of our understanding of how people can be, exist and function. I have been told innumerable times in my life that I’m not a “real man” because of my sexuality, but if homosexual acts remove me from my sex then sex is surely not innate and immutable- and yet many homophobic gender critical people can hold these two opposing beliefs in their heads at the same time.
I do have to wonder on a personal level if there is a connection between why a lot of gay men are more effeminate- is it biological, societal: who knows. But the question is, why does it matter. Behaviour is just behaviour, and why do normative people feel threatened by those who do not conform? Perhaps there’s a biological imperative on why certain sexes act certain ways, and a further conflation of why homosexual people act differently than this- but in a society that isn’t based on survival due to very base acts, actions and modes of existence it doesn’t matter.

I used to believe that humans would naturally become more understanding, kinder, better as we grew. But I grew up in the early 90s and we didn’t have the internet or smart phones. Now we do, we can reach out and speak to people of every walk of life- and that seems to have come with endless discourse from normative people on why anything outside of their experience makes them uncomfortable. One has to wonder whether this massive amount of discussion is simply a Richter shake of society as we strain to accommodate those who were quiet before: but the main issue we face is that society will not continue to improve until we stop recycling the same faces, the same voices: White cis women endlessly recycling the same 5000 words about their discomfort with trans women, middle aged men speaking out about foreign people in their countries, old people talking about the problems with the young… Until we change the well worn narrative it is only these recidivist attitudes that will continue to seem “normal” and whilst I personally do not want to appeal to “normal” because I am not by my nature, I would very much like for “normal” people to stop discussing people who are not they as a pastime.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

Bigots are the real perverts

By Daviemoo

I am so tired.
I’m 34, and when I was 15 that seemed like a huge age- more than double what I was then. Light years away…
I picked 15 because that was the age I came out. To my family and friends, at school. I was so lucky; the bullying that had plagued me because I was effeminate and shy stopped. I found confidence, I could stop lying about things and hiding. But so began a journey that is wearing me down- like the head of a hip bone in the joint I was strong in my youth but there are some arguments I’m honestly so tired of, and I want to set those out here, on pride month, so people who aren’t part of this community or who are and feel differently can see my perspective.

“Why do you need to make it your whole personality” is one of the most headache inducing sentences I can hear.
Do you think I do it on purpose? It’s on my mind a lot. And I urge you to think consciously about how often you reference the people you like, the people you love, sex, sexuality…
But let’s look at some honest to god things that I’ve seen in the last month.

In a queue in Tescos a guy squeezed his girlfriends arse, right in front of me, brazenly. Do I need to be party to that? Is that not over-sexual and a bit grim when there could be impressionable kids around? Or is is ok because it’s ‘natural’ because boys will be boys or because straight is the ‘right’ way to be…
Less than 2 weeks later I went for a walk down by Leeds river and saw a guy literally rubbing his girlfriend’s buttHOLE through her lycra running pants. Sat by the river. In front of anyone who walked past. THAT is gross- and yet so normalised that apparently my response of looking like someone had shot me with a crossbow was inappropriate, not the whole guy rubbing his girlfriend’s bum-hole publicly thing…?!
I’ve seen so many straight couples holding hands, kissing, cuddling, I saw a guy pick his girlfriend up and carry her down the street- at the gym a girl sat behind her boyfriend and cuddled him as he did weighted rows. All normal, right? All acceptable and totally cool…

I was in Starbucks the other week and heard a lengthy conversation from an extremely loud guy talking about how he plans to ask his girlfriend to move in in September. It was cute- but Imagine for a moment if that was a nasty gay or lesbian or bi doing it. Filthily shoving their sexuality down my throat. It’s totally different in no way whatsoever and I for one am sick of it.

The inclusion trope is so funny as well. “You cant turn a TV show on now without a trans or bi character”. Oh no! One to two characters who aren’t a carbon copy of little you?! Is this erasure? We can watch 3 hour long movies about blue aliens that use their tail fibres to communicate with their planet, but god forbid one of those blue aliens goes home to a woman instead, that’s degenerate, unrealistic!

The double standard isn’t even the most exhausting part, it’s bigoted people’s absolute transparent desperation to remove the nuance of anyone and reduce them down to sex sex sex… trans people only transition for sexual reasons, gay men are filthy disease ridden sluts and on and on and on go the stupid tropes – if anything’s being forced down anyone’s throats it’s your unbidden opinions of us! I don’t care if my sexuality disturbs or bothers you, it’s possible anything from your chunky jewellery and unflattering shoes to your miserable hatchet face disturbs me and yet I can and do keep it to myself.
I’m tired of us being called the thought police. I don’t care if you’re a bigoty piece of shit- just keep it to yourself. If me being gay, being gay publicly, kissing a man, being effeminate bothers you- grow up. Your discomfort isn’t my problem any more than mine is yours, but I can’t help being gay and you sure as shit can help being a bigoted piece of shit. Look away! Go on your phone, imagine something, get a hobby- just leave us alone! The reason I’m worried about you saying shit to me is because violence is usually sure to follow.
And let’s be honest, it’s not just about SAYING it, is it? I was once teaching two girls the dance to Bad Romance in the bar I frequented when a guy came storming up to me, stuck his chest on mine, stared me right in the eyes and said “ERE…are you a fucking FAGGOT”.
I panicked, but I figured I’d rather get punched out for being honest than lying so I said yes.
He shook his head confusedly and walked away- I dont get it either. But the point is, I wasn’t doing a gay act, I wasn’t pleasuring a man, I was doing a fucking dance and that’s STILL too much for you people, still too provocative. How dare I… know a dance to a very popular song? People like you won’t be happy til every man has a “mum” tattoo on his bicep, anger issues and a pending restraining order from an ex girlfriend.

We are MORE than our sex, sexuality, gender – but we’re never allowed to be by you people. Even if I never told people I’m gay they’d know, and even if I was achingly private about it people would still ask. It’s never a case of “you wear it on your sleeve”, it’s a case of your coat is torn off by nosy strangers who expose you regardless of whether you want to be open or not.

Rebel Wilson was recently outed by a newspaper- staffed by gay people who made the decision to completely shatter someone else’s privacy! Wilson hadn’t spoken out about it but suddenly it was in the public’s interest to know that she is dating a woman… why? If homosexuality is so sinful and wrong and we should stop shoving it down your throats, why is it that we can’t just live in peace without neon headlines buzzing our names and announcing “she likes WOMEN!”

It’s because, to you, we’re the car crash you can’t turn away from. Straight bigots love to point and whisper behind their hands about us, gossip about us, ask each other who does the fucking and who does the sucking but the second we step forward to say “yes, it’s true. I like men” suddenly we’re the perverts.

If you can’t look at a progress or a pride flag without thinking about sex and orgasms, about sweaty bodies it’s not because that’s what that flag, or this community, or we as individuals represent- it’s because you are literally a pervert. You sexualise a community who comes together because of our feelings, because of who we are. And of course sex comes into sexuality. But it’s so funny to hear people whinge endlessly about pride. Overly sexual pride. Gee guys and gals, it seems like having a big party in the street is the least we can do after our predecessors being sawn in half from the genitals to the neck because we’re gay, or being burnt at the stake, or gassed, shot, hate crimed, forced to bury who we are because you people are so reductive you can’t for one second accept that we are not human cookies, churned out in a factory somewhere all from the same mould, same taste, same look and any divergence is a weakness.

I would be a gay man even if I never touched another man in my entire life- it’s about my core identity- it’s about the fact that when I look at a handsome man I can feel my pupils dilate a bit. It’s about imagining having a conversation with him and seeing if his teeth are nice, about finding out we both like to write, about that electric moment his hand brushes mine and we look into each other’s eyes. Its about when we’ve been dating for 8 months and he casually asks if he can keep some things in my drawer. About the morning after a huge fight when I wake up to 6 texts and we cry then laugh together. To take from real life, it’s about loving a man who passed away and being devastated that I’ll never get the chance to put my arms around him again and tell him I forgive him for the way he left me, about how frustrated I am that his ashes are sat in his homophobic father’s house and how every so often I get the crazy urge to go to his old haunt and steal them back and spread them where I know he was happy.

These are the real lives, the genuine things you overlook every time you roll your eyes and sigh about the nasty inclusive flag.
Every time you look at that flag you should see the bodies of people who died rather than face the endless suspicion, persecution, violence you put them through- because when you reduce us to nothing but fuck puppies you take away our humanity. I’ve seen more humanity in one random member of my community, one transgender person who spends their time counselling younger fellows or one lesbian spending her weekends working for a charity than I ever have in a thousand red faced, yelling homophobes whose lives are empty because they cut out a huge group of people just for standing under a rainbow.

Why I don’t believe in heterosexual marriage- but bravely back it anyway

By Daviemoo

I get that people are comfortable with their sexuality and feel the need to express it. I just feel like it’s being forced on me these days. Every time I put on the TV, every time I read a magazine or a book, there it is- the straight agenda. Men kissing women openly? I worry for our kids as we see the rise of this supposedly “woke” acceptance of straight people everywhere.

Let me preface this by saying, I’m not heterophobic- I believe straight people should be allowed to live in peace and with dignity. I’m just not comfortable with how open a lot of them are about their lifestyle.
Whether you chose to be straight, or you were born that way- it doesn’t really matter, you’re allowed to be and the world is more accepting of you now than it’s ever been – people almost never get killed just for being straight any more. But every day when I see perfume adverts of barely clothed straight couples gyrating on each other, or I’m forced to see another obviously straight-appeasing character indulge in a romance storyline on a tv show I’m trying to enjoy, I just have to ask myself how far this is going to go? Are we going to keep exposing our children to the sexual iniquities of the straight people out there in the name of supposed “inclusivity”?

I know this makes me sound bigoted but really hear me out. What if some poor, innocent gay child is minding their own business and one of their classmates decides to come out as straight and start talking about their lifestyle choice, and that poor impressionable homosexual is convinced that they might be too? When does it end? There should be limits on acceptable talk in front of children when it comes to heterosexuality- for their safety. I don’t want some poor confused kid going through hell trying to work out who they are, or pretending to be straight just to fit in when it seems these days it’s fashionable to call yourself a hetero and start parading around touching your girlfriend or boyfriend up in public. It’s deeply concerning to me.

Again I just want to say, I have no problem with heterosexuals! Some of my best friends are straight and I’m happy for them- but they also know how to act appropriately in public- they don’t go parading around kissing members of the opposite sex for fun, they don’t talk about their dates or their “marriages” that they’re suddenly allowed to have. I’m glad they want to say their relationships are as important as my own, I think they are well within their rights to do it. All I ask, and I’m sure this isn’t unreasonable, is that straight people just learn a little decorum. I do not need to hear your disgusting insinuations about your heterosexual bedroom activities, or worse as if it’s nice and normal to talk about it with silly phrases like “we’re trying for a baby!” because what I hear when you say that is that you’re having unprotected sex with each other- is that something you really want to broadcast, that you’re having unprotected sex?
Some heterosexuals just have no idea how to behave too. I was buying some things to cook the other day and a straight man squeezed a woman’s bottom in front of me! In public! In a store! It seemed performative, I don’t know how they had the nerve to do something so disgusting right in front of my face.

Ultimately, the Queen RuPaul’s bible does condemn heterosexuality in all it’s forms and I do believe it’s only fair to hate the sin but love the sinner- when people die, god will sort them all out and heterosexuals who choose to engage their lifestyle choices will pay recompense for it- that’s just what the bible says and I don’t feel I should have to apologise for that- it’s worthy of respect in a democratic society, obviously- and clearly my religion, my personal beliefs should impact on other peoples ability to live their lives because their activities make me personally uncomfortable, and we all know that this is the yardstick which all society should be formed upon.

Some people will call me woke but I do believe in straight marriage even if I dont agree with it per-se- I think hetero weddings are a beautiful idea (even if so many of them end in divorce because I think we know straight people, deep down, aren’t really “marriage material”) but if they want to do it, they should absolutely be allowed to- just as long as they keep it to themselves.

I really hope my straight friends understand what I mean when I say this- I don’t think your lives are worth less than mine, it’s just that being able to procreate is definitely something we should factor into someones’ worth as a human, because arbitrary processes like ovulation, sperm creation and being able to do missionary are really vital aspects of humanity and not silly irrelevancies like kindness, the willing to help others and any of that other nonsense. Remember, no matter who you choose to sleep with I will always think you’re alright: ultimately this is an issue of cultural appropriateness and I think once this fervour for “straightness” has died down and people realise they don’t need to play act we might see a calming down of the heterosexual agenda. Until then, be you- just please keep it appropriate in front of the children. I believe you’re more than your sexuality- I just believe it’s not really age acceptable to be cavorting around in front of the impressionable with something that’s a little too “adult” in nature.

I hope people read this and understand this is the sort of unmitigated hogwash LGBTQIA people have had to read about ourselves for literally our entire lives and I hope this is funny- but re-read it and imagine that it’s sincerely written about you by someone who actually believes it. Hard as it may be to believe this is the sort of unfiltered shitpipery that we deal with on the daily. Only you guys can sort this out- maybe it’s time to try doing that.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

Our lives are not ideologies: your violent hatred is.

By Daviemoo

The UK faces multiple crises: people are calling radio stations explaining that they cannot afford food nor the energy to heat it. Coronavirus has hospitalised more people today than in January 2021. Our government had multiple illegal gatherings and our leader lied bold faced to the gathered parliament about it. And yet the press seethes with questions about women and penises. In America, the “don’t say gay” bill has passed, a ludicrous legislation that helps nobody but immiserates some, and recently a right wing pundit suggested that doctors who provide gender affirming healthcare should be killed. These are dark times indeed to be LGBT+

Nothing stokes my rancour so quickly as to see who I am described as an ideology. There is no such thing as the “gay lifestyle”, nor “trans trend”: we have existed since the human race began in our varied forms and every culture. Sometimes we were accepted, sometimes we were not but the fact of our existence has never changed.

An ideology is a set of beliefs or ideals brought together by a collective: capitalism is an ideology. Communism is an ideology. Religion is arguably an ideology.

The lives of your fellow rainbow humans are not an ideology. Our long and tiring discourse over acceptance is no attempt to recruit unwitting heterosexual or cisgender people to our ranks. We exist: we are, at our core, a collective who banded together because we faced discrimination historically and still do now.

Many people defend the seclusion of our community from society at large without once realising that the sexualisation, the insinuation of perversion always comes from without, not within: the “don’t say gay” bill had an amendment removed which would have explicitly forbidden discussion of sex or sexual matters: this amendment was voted down. Which means that HETEROSEXUAL acts can be discussed with children. In my eyes this is deeply disturbing. No child should be exposed to discussions of sex until ready: and it is here that the majority of the world itself still has learning to do.

Photo by SHVETS production on Pexels.com

Sexuality and gender identity are not sex. They are not sexual. They are objective terms. If you can tell a child you have a wife, you can tell them you have a husband. If you can tell a child you think a woman is pretty you, you can tell them you think a man is handsome. Gender identity is deeply personal, to the point that my own gender identity as a cis man is different of that of another cis man: every single person has their own individual construction of their gender or lack thereof, and it is theirs to own and claim.

Terms like autogynephile were coined to insinuate that trans people are trans for sexual reasons and not simply that they were born into trans bodies and must reconcile that however they see fit.

We talk about spaces and inclusion, and there is a particular lack of nuance in the gender critical discussion around spaces that is endlessly frustrating: you are not “keeping” spaces single sex: spaces have been trans inclusive for well over 30 years, so to now MAKE a space single sex this necessitates trans exclusion, and exclusion is wrong.

Today I had a lengthy discussion with a gender critical account on twitter- they claimed to be a woman but I do not know as their account was anonymous, and I tried to reconcile gender critical ideology even against itself and came up lacking.

According to this account they “have trans friends” they’re fine with but are not fine with “males in their spaces” and “can tell when someone is male even if they don’t say it”.

Sometimes I admit I’ve found myself leaping to trans people’s defence so quickly, I haven’t weighed my words appropriately so I decided to do so this time. Let’s take this argument at face value despite the facile nature. What if we did ban all trans people from the spaces they currently use? How many murdered, beaten, assaulted transgender bodies would it take before gender critical people understood that trans people are at threat as well. And in fact, would they? Though many deny it there is a core knot of gender critical thinkers who would like nothing more than to simply see transgender eradication: and for those less hardcore thinkers in the gender critical circles if you do not wish to confront your feelings towards trans people, you may wish to confront those within your circles who condone a trans mass eradication.

Endlessly talking in circles around sexual assault and genitals and fetishes online is a dark, depressing and tiring struggle and lately I’ve found myself debating simply tuning it out and focusing on political activism- and yet time after time I find myself appalled at the language and falsehoods spread by anti trans activists.

How anyone who claims to be feminist can hold such damaging, narrow and regressive views is beyond me. Having an erection is not a sign of sexual enjoyment: as a man who has been sexually assaulted I can assure you of that. Almost 1 in 2 trans people have experienced sexual assault. There is a commonality here with cis women that should bring the communities together and in many cases does, and yet gender critical thinking uses this as a wedge.

But this goes beyond worst case scenarios. We come across a lot of very structured repeated language when we talk about trans people: “keep access to single sex spaces” (trans people have used those spaces for over 30 years so you’re ‘keeping’ nothing, any change to make spaces single sex would bar trans people, thereby removing their rights. “Protect dignity” what dignity is lost from a trans woman being present that is kept in the face of a non trans woman? The constant refrain of “safety” which is always paramount but also figmentary: safety isn’t guaranteed because of a sign on the door, or trans exclusive recommendations by the EHRC, or by legal declarations by an inept PM appealing to anger. A predatory person will do what a predatory person will do regardless of these things.

Trans exclusion is constantly being framed as womens’ safety- and yet we see very little to no actual founded evidence that trans inclusion is a threat to women in the first place. Uncomfortable for some, perhaps though it’s arguably more due to the bias of the woman than the existence of the trans person. Fear mongering around trans existence has no end result. Trans people regardless of hormones and affirming care or wigs or hair growth or blockers or dresses or packers or binders- will always be trans.

Again, I feel there needs to be a pointing out of the urgent need to reframe arguments to be seen as they are from the LGBT+ perspective.

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

When people argue that gay & lesbian people cannot be discussed, it is not we who are innately sexual: you are sexualising us, ignorantly placing our sexuality in this illusory realm of immoral behaviour. A gay man in a grey suit walking to work is not innately sexual- but he is gay. So why is referencing his sexuality so sexually explicit it cannot be mentioned?

If you want to protect children from sexual referencing may I suggest a law banning children from watching TV until they are 13. Adverts sexualising people are on TV all day- from perfume adverts with nude bodies as the containers to literal adverts for prophylactics: sexuality is everywhere- just, the sexuality you WANT for children. You don’t care if a little boy sees an advert of a half naked woman smelling another half naked woman’s neck, and you don’t mind asking a 5 year old if his female friend is his GIRLFRIEND at the school gates. I remember those expectations early on and they damaged not just me, wondering why I didn’t feel what everyone told me I should but they also hurt my family when I did come out, because this imaginary future they built for me all but vanished: was that my fault? Should I have lived a lie to make them happy?

The worst of the liars are those who claim to “accept us” but think we shouldn’t be referenced in front of children. If those children are straight all they will do is nod and move on. If they’re like us, the likelihood is they might just feel a little bit less alone: and treating us like we are watershed humans is a dehumanising experience.

Our community exists. It’s not an ideology: we have cultures we can, if we choose, loosely abide by or take elements from. Culture is pre-existing facets, behaviours or tropes which we can reference, imbibe or exhibit. That isn’t an ideology, and there wouldn’t even be a NEED for gay, lesbian, trans culture if we hadn’t been ostracised- by exculpatory ignoramus’ passed- from culture at large.
You notice also that those of us who are gender critical or even work against our own rights (see the regular gay republicans trotted out to say they AGREE with anti LGBT+ sentiment) are usually desperate to conform to what they see as hetero or cisnormative.

Anti trans, anti gay people and all of those in-between- at the very least stop referencing our very lives as "ideologies"- it demonstrates a poor grasp of the English language and an ignorance you're fighting hard to deny.
Photo by Mikhail Nilov on Pexels.com

When it comes to ideologies and damaging ones at that, I would point the accusatory finger damningly in the direction of movements aimed at removing rights from transgender people as a whole because of the imagined crimes of a few, of demonising gay and lesbian people so badly that we cannot even be mentioned in front of children. Looking at ideologies that monetise their hate- a new conversion therapy camp opened recently in the UK- or who make merchandise specifically geared to intimidate us (adult human female T shirts, umbrellas, key chains), who show up to our days of remembrance to harass us or stand on the sidelines of our marches to tell us we’ll face eternal agony for who we are- how can it be denied that these movements are inappropriate.

Nobody would deny women with legitimate concerns from speaking but I’d hasten the gender critical women who truly believe in their cause to step forward and kick out the monsters from your group – after all, one bad trans person means they’re all bad, right? So what does one person, five people, ten anti trans activists belittling rape victims stories say about your movement.

Conversion therapy is torture

By Daviemoo

Conversion therapy is a clumsy and useless umbrella term for everything that falls under it- from simple talking therapies to violence, rape and castration, it is a term that does not encompass the horror which it can, does, and has entailed for those who have suffered at it’s hands and – thanks to the conservative government, will continue to. This violence against the trans community must be stopped at all costs.

Firstly a disclaimer to the “gender critical” LGB and perhaps even T people who enjoy consuming my content to harass me: they were going to ignore any suggestions of a ban: you’re on the side of people who would happily see you tortured because of your identity too. Be careful throwing around the term ‘handmaidens’ in future because we may not be able to hear you over the flapping of your collars.

Anti trans activists have fastened their hands around some key phrases I want to debunk: “we are just women with concerns”. Many (not all, perhaps) of the concerns that anti trans activists have revolve around the bodies of trans people, information they are not entitled to: they revolve around baseless claims of transgender people as predatory, or about the damage that transition does to trans people rather than the successes of those who have been helped immensely by it- focusing on the small percentile who desist in their transition rather than those who happily, safely transition and live in their gender or those who choose to re-transition down the line. For women with concerns there is also a surprising amount of virulently anti woman commentary- Steve Brookstein, an X factor competitor tried to have a tweet saying “can we all agree the main purpose of a woman is to procreate” go viral.

We also see a surprising paucity of coverage of other concerns for women: a cursory search of some of the more prominent anti trans figureheads like Maya Forstater, JK Rowling, Kathleen Stock, Graham Linehan, Helen Staniland- reveal little to no discourse around topics like the horrific murder of Sarah Everard at the hands of a policeman, or Blessing Olusegun’s mysterious death, Sabina Nessa’s murder in a London park. They, of course, will argue that they see trans people as the biggest threat to women, that women are being erased in favour of a hopelessly small minority. Not to insult your intelligence dear reader, but can you spot the flaw in claiming that trans WOMEN are erasing the word women, or erasing women in general when trans women ARE women?

The other phrase often repeated is “standing up for women and girls” which I find a truly bizarre sentiment when those who spend hours online describing the rising transgender menace rarely speak out on topics like medical misogyny, period poverty, the disproportionate ageism women face, rape culture, body shaming- yet today the daily mail, with a photoshoot, lauds Forstater with a campaign she deems “the most significant women’s rights movement since the suffragettes”.

Suffragettes committed acts of what would today be called terrorism in desperation to be legitimised as human beings, as people with feelings, thoughts, brains, pride, and a fierce determination to be treated with respect: one could easily argue that Forstater’s virulent anti trans rhetoric could be pushing trans people so far to the wall that they are the oppressed facing a violent struggle for legitimacy. There is also the often spotted repetition of anti trans activists stating glibly that they can ALWAYS TELL someone is trans then blithely calling non trans allies trans: and it brings up a philosophical point: if you can “always tell” why is there also a huge push for trans women to disclose their medical history to you? Perhaps transphobes like being told things they apparently already knew: it does explain why the discourse is so hopelessly circular.

I doubt that there are many readers who believe that women have equality or equity in society: for those that disagree, you are wrong. Women have been maligned by men for all of history and are now, and unfortunately will continue to be because whether you believe in patriarchy or not, some form of male supremacy does exist, persist and propagates in society. One must ask though whether the anti trans movement is a cause that champions women’s equality or whether it opens the door for further oppression of women and girls.

Looking at LGBT+ oppression specifically which obviously encompasses that of women and girls- cis and trans- let us view the statements the UK government itself has made;

there is no robust evidence that conversion therapy can achieve its stated therapeutic aim of changing sexual orientation or gender identity

the types of practices tend to be similar for conversion therapy for sexual orientation and for gender identity – for example, talking therapies delivered by faith groups or mental health professionals

conversion therapies were associated with self-reported harms among research participants who had experienced conversion therapy for sexual orientation and for gender identity – for example, negative mental health effects like depression and feeling suicidal

there is indicative evidence from surveys that transgender respondents were as likely or more likely to be offered and receive conversion therapy than non-transgender lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) respondents

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/an-assessment-of-the-evidence-on-conversion-therapy-for-sexual-orientation-and-gender-identity/an-assessment-of-the-evidence-on-conversion-therapy-for-sexual-orientation-and-gender-identity

If you create a ruling against transgender people being able to access certain healthcare, that ruling likely speaks on the individual’s bodily autonomy. Bodily autonomy is already (for ridiculous reasons) still questionable when it comes to women: from seeking abortion rights to whether or when they may access birth control and which method- to the simple right to say no to men in some cultures. Propagating an argument about bodily autonomy against trans people can- and will – be weaponised against these supposed moral crusaders for women’s rights because it’s plain to see that the anti trans panic is being championed by those who also work against womens’ rights: fundamentalist christians and hard right figures who believe that their entitlement to control women’s bodies is paramount to women’s own rights to choose.

Don’t believe it? Vladimir Putin has, before defending JK Rowling, called trans acceptance a “crime against humanity”. Donald Trump almost immediately enacted a ban on trans people serving in the army (it is more nuanced than written here for the sake of expedience but is no less true). Trump’s son lauded Rowling’s scorn filled tweets about “penised people”. Let us also highlight the irony of Putin’s rhetoric- he claimed JK Rowling was “cancelled” and that the west is trying to “cancel” Russia: bold words from a man so afraid of political rivals he has them murdered, imprisoned or injured. Rowling enjoys wealth, influence and adoration untainted by her increasingly outspoken verbiage against a community she’s previously expected praise from for the crumbs of a non sexual gay character who went full wizard Nazi because his boyfriend wanted him to.

This does, however, run deeper than left or right wing politics though the case is easily made that this is right wing propaganda, especially as we see that the only thing the tories are levelling up on is the rhetoric that labour are woke lefties as we prepare for the announcement of an early election. MPs who would normally take pragmatic views step back on making clear statements of support for those they normally would for fear they would upset bigots. I myself have written to my local MP in disgust of both sides of the political aisle, from Rosie Duffield’s endless platforming to speak out against trans people to Wes Streeting’s repeated and ignored transgressions against trans people, and conversely to the openly empty sentiments of permanently angry sentient felt tip Sophie Corcoran tweeting “don’t call me cis!”.

Prominent news outlets like (and I won’t say respectable because) talk radio, sky news, LBC, The BBC, all dedicating portions of their air time to questions like “can a woman have a penis” or “should we ask men if they’re pregnant in hospital”.

Insanity incarnate rules the media: because who cares? Shall we entertain discourse about how big a penis has to be before a man is a man? Does a micropenis mean a man is not a man? Genitals do not define you wholly.

Non parody-parody commentator Darren Grimes leapt to an impassioned defence of conversion therapy on twitter- it’s strange that Darren is so passionate in the availability of conversion therapy and yet hasn’t gone through it. Mayhaps he hasn’t run out of hope that he’ll find someone who can overlook his personality, lack of intelligence and disturbingly toothy face in favour of his good qualities, like his mam’s cooking. Mayhaps Darren hasn’t partaken in conversion therapy because:

These troubling ethical practices have raised alarm in major mental health professions, particularly because of the harm to patients. Further, all of these factors raise another ethical issue: Even if the questionable claims of conversion therapy’s effectiveness are valid, should the conversion of some “homosexuals” to heterosexuality condone the iatrogenic harm done to other patients who later come out as gay or lesbian?

In other words, should it not matter how many gay or lesbian people are hurt in the process of creating a few heterosexuals?

https://meridian.allenpress.com/jmr/article/102/2/7/80848/The-Growing-Regulation-of-Conversion-Therapy

The argument has always been that you are what you are born, that biology and nature matter. This of course discounts the gene therapy people can have to prevent inherited conditions, the plastic surgery people can have on lunch to hide signs of ageing, the cancer destroyed by gamma knives, the towering blocks of concrete and glass we erect. Denying trans healthcare is to deny the progression of a species scientifically out of fear and bigotry: we live in a world where these things are possible- what does preventing it do?

There is no weight to arguing that women are women because of breasts which some women do or don’t have for one reason or another, or uteri, or hormones or this or that: combined, these things may- MAY – make up a huge proportion of woman, but cis or trans some women do not fit all or even any of these stereotypes. It is ultimately YOU who decides what makes your womanhood and though that can have commonality with other women’s ideas it absolutely does not make you more correct than the woman whose breasts never developed, who never had a period, and so on and so on. Nobody though is denying the biological reality of sex: but gametes do not dictate our societal treatment of each other (I would hope).

There is SOME weight to arguing that women are women because from the moment they grow they are treated as women are, for better or worse. But pause and ask the commonalities between trans and cis women’s growing experience and see whether you believe those common threads are enough that the experience is not wholly unique.

Now let’s move to a question on the topic at hand: do you believe conversion therapy works?

The government’s own compiled dossier on conversion therapy states as above that “there is no evidence that conversion therapy can or does achieve the aims it seeks to”. Those wishing to keep it legal will ask why it would then harm to keep it legal. This dry sentence does not encompass the horror that lurks beneath.
Documentaries covering the repeated brutal rape, beating, ECT, medication, physical and mental abuse that can- and does- encompass conversion therapy are widely available online. So is research into what these tactics achieve: high morbidity rates and for those who are “successfully converted” a lifetime of PTSD and dissatisfaction that may or may not prevent you from continuing to be exactly what you always were.

There is an irony I enjoy pointing out in fundamentalist anti LGBT+ thinking: you are the ones who sexualise us. The mere mention of gay men has people covering their children’s ears and hissing about inappropriate topics! But my penchant for finding men attractive is quite a distinguished topic from anal sex, poppers, doucheing. Did you know that the recently signed “don’t say gay” bill in the US had two proposed amendments offered? One suggested that it would be appropriate to provide assistive materials to those who a teacher reasonably assumed to be LGBT+ so they would be able to access materials to help them understand their identities? It was voted down. Another amendment suggested that it be made completely blanket illegal to talk about sex (of any kind): it was voted down. So you can talk to a 6, 7 or 8 year old child about heterosexual sex but not homosexual sex: because, it seems, it’s wrong to talk about gay sex but not straight sex? But this act is oft touted as “not homophobic, it’s about stopping children hearing about inappropriate topics”. No. It’s erasure.

There’s a saying which has deep roots in mythology: “we are legion”. And this applies to the LGBT+. You can legislate against us. You can demonise us, imprison and kill us; no doubt people will continue to do so. But we are born, not (to my knowledge) made- evidence backed up by the solid failure of conversion therapy to do it’s stated aim- convert.

We will continue to persist no matter what you do to us. Those of us with decency stand together. And again a reminder that you can only push a community so far before they need to resort to desperate efforts to defend themselves.

Please consider writing to your MP today regarding this fallacious state of affairs: the government must stop the rhetoric of transgender people being less deserving of dignity and safety and must start looking after the citizens of the UK. Legal torture protects nobody.

Daviemoo is a 34 year old independent writer, radicalised into blogging about the political state of the world by Brexit and the election of serial failures like Trump and Johnson. Please check out the rest of the blog, check out Politically Enraged, the podcast available on all streaming platforms and share with your like minded friends! Also check him out on ko-fi where you can keep him caffeinated whilst he writes.

What motivates men to send unsolicited nudes?

By Daviemoo

As a man- and a gay man at that- some behaviour that other men display mystifies me. I need to clarify before I get into this piece that sending nudes is fine, if consensual. Things that imply consent like trading alts or sexting and discussing it change the paradigm of sending naked pictures- but there are some things people do which utterly confuse me, and I’ve read myriad articles about these behaviours trying to see if other people understand it better than me- it’s led to more confusion than anything.

Having read several articles and spoken extensively to friends, both male and female, straight and gay, about this topic it often elicits weird and varied responses.

As a whole, my female friends (either trans or cis) do not like, want, or appreciate unsolicited nudes. The responses are usually that it’s strange, alarming, coercive… I’ve never actually had a female friend tell me they want to receive nudes unless it’s someone they already like and have discussed explicitly (ironic phrasing) with the person beforehand. My male friends however… gay or straight they seem to enjoy the idea of unprompted nudes. I’ve asked why, and the responses ranged from “dunno, I just think it’s fit” to “it shows they like you”. It seems to be a fundamental difference in how people think, and I’m not sure if its sociological or biological- but it’s interesting and disturbing in equal measure.

For my own personal experiences using apps like grindr etc, you’re told it’s “part of it” which I honestly can’t help but see as a sad indictment of the mindset of a lot of men who are sexually attracted to men. If people do find trading nudes enjoyable that’s fine – I do too- but sending unprompted explicit pictures as a hello is deeply wrong in my eyes. Even if you’re on grindr for sex, who says that you want to see everyone naked? Or receive explicit voice clips etc?
The men who defend these practices seem not to realise how very predatory their behaviour can seem. Would you approach a stranger you found attractive in a bar and immediately show them your naked body without their consent? Why do you think it’s appropriate to do because it’s on an app instead of in person?

Often those who question these things are the ones who are castigated or shouted down: it’s expected that some men can, and will, behave in this way and with impunity for it. “It’s not serious, it’s not a big deal, it’s for a laugh, you can just ignore it”. It’s always the person receiving the unwanted messages who needs to calm down or moderate their behaviour- not the sender.

Some have stated that they feel these behaviours have worsened because of, or during, the lockdowns during the pandemic.

Men have spent a lot of time away from women, and have almost lost any semblance of respect for women that they had in the face of endlessly talking to other men on the internet about female mythologies- plus the #NotAllMen backlash from the horrific murder (at the hands of a police man) of Sarah Everard seemed to push misogyny to the surface, a piffling defence that not every man commits heinous crimes- but exposing, simultaneously, that any critique of men which personalised towards the every day man, enraged any men who felt personally attacked- which coincidentally covered a lot of men, who suddenly felt exposed and aggrieved for being called out on negative behaviour. The explosion of outright hostility from men all over the internet who felt like they shouldn’t be questioned and should be given carte blanche seemed to cover the fine point that many of the men who do these terrible things, from harassing women over the internet to brutal sexual crimes, were given carte blanche- and now that card was no longer blanche -French for white- it was now the rusty brown of the blood of women murdered for saying no, for walking away, for the crime of being desirable or just being there at the wrong moment.

In my own humble opinion, this behaviour’s continual fostering and tolerance in society is indicative of why we see and experience so much sexual impropriety- from being touched without consent in bars to full, gritty and horrific cases of sexual assault, to men declaring women their property. At no point are men – regardless of sexuality – taught to value the feelings of those they’re speaking to as equal to their own: to pause and consider how unprompted sexually explicit imagery may make people feel, regardless of their own views on receiving them.

I’ve tried to put myself into the mindset of those who send unprompted explicit photos and it’s a strange mindset to be in- is it that sending photos is the sexual thrill, regardless of the reaction? Is the potential of a negative reaction arousing? Do they genuinely expect a positive reaction? Is it a brag? Is it a power move? All these things occcur to me and yet I’m never sure if I’m close to the answer or wildly off base. I can’t help but feel that different people do it for different reasons because it’s so widespread.

I’ve also discussed this with a close group of friends, and one of them said he’d asked a friend who does it “why do you send them unprompted”- the person he asked apparently was shocked that it might offend or upset people- he was convinced it was a nice way to tell a woman he thought they were attractive.

The issue I think that society misses is that every enabled transgression against other people’s sensibilities can potentially be a building block to embolden more damaging behaviour- and society fails to address men’s propensity for thinking of these things as non-serious, indeed, emboldens it and, as such fosters worse behaviour to occur. After all, if men can and do joke about everything from sending unwanted nudes to sexual assault, it lessens the severity- it’s the reason that minorities do not appreciate jokes at our expense- because making someone or something serious an abstract joke emboldens people’s flippancy towards it.

Many men read writing like this and immediately become defensive and it’s this oversensitivity to critique that must be stopped. If these things apply to you – if you send unwanted pictures, just don’t. If you make off colour jokes about sexual harassment – stop. Nobody is asking for you to cut off a toe, it’s a simple reframing of your own comforts to match those around you- and it’s past time that men feel that their entitlement outweighs other people’s comfort and safety.

I urge you to realise that if this applies to you it’s not to say you’re a horrific person: I do feel that a lot of men are victims of a society that fails to impress on them moral decency, and that gives them- us, I should say, a skewed concept of our importance to others. If you grow up believing showing someone a picture of your penis is a reward or a compliment, clearly you have a misplaced sense of right and wrong. Society is failing women every day by not looking urgently at how to address these issues- but it’s also failing men by allowing deep, dangerous holes in moral fabric to percolate and worsen. Of course it’s down to individual choice as to whether you act on these urges which are wrong and in some cases verge on harassment. But I do feel that society needs to take ownership of it’s endorsement of these behaviours, stop, and urgently push men to reflect on how they behave.

Regardless of sexuality- until society admits that a false economy of men’s behaviour being tolerable when it isn’t, and until as a society we commit to doing better, men will continue to be viewed with well earned suspicion.