“Get the L out?” More like wake the L up!

By Daviemoo

I realised the other day that some of my pro trans content is misunderstood- some people believe I’m a trans man, which I honestly don’t mind because being trans isn’t a bad thing. But I’m not trans; I just stand with trans people. I stand with trans people because I have a few friends who are trans and I know more trans people who seem very decent, and because once you listen to trans people talk about their lives, their experiences, it would take an extraordinary amount of cynicism to doubt their sincerity. I know gender critical people too, and some of the vitriol that comes so easily to them casts no doubt in my mind that they aren’t decent, and even if they are their obsession with demonising trans people is twisting that into irrelevance.
The arguments that lesbian activist group “Get the L out” make all revolve around circumlocutive explainers of their distaste of trans people. “We don’t like men, we dont like penises” and so on and so on- using the veneer of obvious statement
to legitimise obvious transphobia because transgender women aren’t men. If anyone is trying to tell you you simply must date a woman with a penis, those people aren’t of the same ilk as the majority of my trans friends.
The accusations groups like this endlessly cast at trans people are stupid: What person in their right mind do you know who would force upon others the notion that they HAVE to date them or else? The only group I know who do this are… ah, cisgender (aka not trans) men, the men who lurk in bars and proposition women who clearly look uncomfortable at being approached- and it is this insidious comparison of trans female and cis male behaviour that has become so disturbing.
This paralleling is reductive, and will always miss the broader point: Blaming a different demographic for the behaviour of another is a surefire way to continue to propagate that behaviour. That in itself is troubling, but the increasing desperation of gender critical people to prove their ideology is correct has made for horrifying allyships- so to those who believe what Get the L out have to say- all I can say in reply is: Wake the L up.

Let’s get this plain: I dont want the L out. L’s dont want the L out. But people in Get the L out want the L out- so go. Nobody is stopping you, quite the opposite, we actively don’t want bigots in our marches: you don’t “have to” like trans people any more than you “have to” like gay people or people of colour. You’re entitled to be small minded: should you be is a different question. If you keep quiet about it you won’t have an issue- but being offended at being told not to say you don’t like a certain demographic is pretty comical. Saying “I don’t like trans people” is, frighteningly, socially acceptable right now- apply that to any other minority group and people would recoil with shock. This societal malfeasance around trans people is an oversight that will correct with time- people in the future will study this time period in shock at how blithe transphobia is right now. But a key point to remember is this: the people you don’t like also don’t have to treat that dislike, however muted or obnoxiously loud it is, with a wink, a smile, or good grace.
You’re allowed to wrap both hands around the handle of bigotry- but the second you wield it in malice against others, you’ll face repercussions. The fact that this is a shocking concept to people is utterly bizarre.
Transphobic accounts abounds online- anonymous twitter profiles with XXWOMBYN400 will blithely insult trans people with the same ridiculous arguments that have been answered ad nauseam. “What if a man pretends to be a woman, dresses up and goes into a toilet and rapes someone” we’re asked, as though pro trans people are thrilled with this idea. But my immediate response is- what the fuck does that have to do with trans women? That is the behaviour of a cis man- the theoretical behaviour of a cis man- and you’re ascribing it to trans women because-why? And throwing shocking and horrifying terms like, and stories of, rape don’t dissuade people from having the conversation- I myself am a victim of rape- not once, multiple times. Throwing for instance nonsense about rape at me isn’t as important as actual proven instances of it- and how we avoid those.
If you point the stark differences between trans women and cis men out, this is where the delineation between the oft chanted “just women with concerns” and open transphobia becomes plain. If you parallel trans women and cis men, its the open admission that you don’t believe trans women act as their own specific group with their own specific behaviours- and the very act of transitioning, be it socially and or medically, is it’s own divergence from cis het male behaviour. You don’t have to “believe” trans women are women to note that people who decide to socially transition are not of the same ilk as people who don’t. And why on earth would trans women endure a society as openly vitriolic as ours is right now just to enter women’s spaces? And, why would cis men embarrass themselves by pretending to be trans just for some sexual kicks when they don’t need to. Look at any city center on a Saturday night at the pissed up straight cis men who think it’s funny to throw on a dress for a lark. Those men aren’t doing it for sexual kicks, they’re doing it because cis straight men are a law unto themselves- literally.

Stop coddling cis het men

Shocking notion here but- society coddles cis men (including gay ones like myself, though I also posit that we endure different social pressures & therefore face different arms of the same problem).
Literally today, I saw a video of a straight cis man, wearing a rainbow tutu saying to a girl and her boyfriend “flash your boobs for pride!” the girl, naturally uncomfortable, says no to which the guy says “so you don’t support gay people?”
The comments for that video were full, and I mean full, of people saying “see- gay men are just as misogynistic as straight ones”. And yet- two seconds of research would show that the guy with the mic in that video is, in fact, a heterosexual man.
In another example, internet piss-storm and misogynistic shitpipe Andrew Tate is everywhere, all the time, mouthing off about women, and he has also had some choice words about gay people and trans people- and people online will debate for HOURS about how men like Andrew Tate who has openly admitted that he “only talks to women if he can fuck them” are gay gay gay.
Unfortunately for the hard of thinking amongst us, the parallel of not wanting to fuck women must mean that gay men hate women right? I also hate glass bottomed lifts and yet thats not because I don’t want to fuck one.

The sad truth is, many straight men and a worrying proportion of gay men have misogynist thinking baked into them by growth in a society that just doesn’t raise men right- this isn’t to exculpate these men from this type of thinking, by the way. Even I, who used to think I was a feminist and a good ally to women, had much thinking and behaviour to unpick and I try to do that work to the best of my abilities. The problem, though, is that society has hard wired into us the idea that straight men are just wandering the world on autopilot, totally out of control of their behaviour. A girl walks past in a revealing dress and gets groped? A dizzying proportion of people will say “I mean why was she wearing that” and not “why is he out in public if he can’t control himself”.
This same logic utterly pervades the gender critical movement, though rather than being woven in like knitting, large and observable, it’s threaded in like needlepoint and only noticeable when you pick at it.
So- what IF a man dresses up as a woman and sneaks into a woman’s space? Well, then he’s using a space he doesn’t have a legal right to, and he’s doing so for nefarious purposes: that man should be punished legally to the full extent the law allows to prevent it- there is a gulf of problematic behaviour between there, and a trans woman popping into a public bathroom to urinate. And what if a trans woman sexually assaults someone? Then she should be punished to the full extent the law allows because- and I know, shocking concepts everywhere today – anyone being a creep to anyone is bad.

Eternal word-twister Helen Staniland was recently asked why a trans woman quietly using a changing room, unseen, undetected even by the people around her would be problematic. Staniland replied something to the effect of “one could also say the same of a woman who was recorded without her consent- if she doesn’t know, what’s the harm”.
One is a person existing in a space they’re entitled to use, to try on clothes which is the purpose the facilities were built for and who doesn’t intend to circumvent anyone’s boundaries or invade anyone’s personal space- one is a crime and an invasion of privacy which carries a custodial sentence- it’s not even the comparison of apples and oranges, it’s the comparison of an apple and a Typhoon FGR4 fighter jet.
Staniland and those like her are hypocrites of the highest order- they accuse transgender people of disgusting acts which quite often they themselves carry out. Staniland is well known for asking people if they are happy to campaign for male born people with a penis to use women’s facilities, and refuses to accept the answer “if they are trans, yes”. But I’m also confused as to why Staniland et al are so keen to stalk changing rooms, verifying strangers genitals as up to their expectations- Staniland even zoomed into the crotch of a counter-protester in Bristol recently and accused them of having an erection. Sorry to break it to the gender critical movement, but some people just have penises which take up space in our trousers and do occasionally show through- but if you think merely possessing a penis is provocative that is very much for you to untangle with several bouts of therapy- not the least because, according to you, the inversion of a penis doesn’t mitigate the threat of it’s existence. Some people see the ownership of a penis as equivalent to the ownership of a gun, but a penis isn’t a weapon unless it’s used that way, the same way a monkey wrench isn’t a weapon unless you club someone around the head with it. It’s not the physicality of owning a penis one needs to worry about, it’s the intent of the owner and to cast all trans people as dangers just because of their genitals is a ridiculous argument.

The very idea that anti trans people see trans people’s mere existence as a transgression against themselves is the reason I’ve become so deeply concerned about the path down which the anti trans groups are wandering. Pushing the idea that it’s as offensive to exist in tandem to someone as it is to nefariously record them without their permission is fallacious- and eagerly swallowed down by gender critical supporters of all calibres because of course that’s what trans people are doing, why they’re transitioning. It’s not because trans people just want to use facilities like you do- they’re nefarious by nature, clearly…
This leads me on, though, to a point I feel the ardent supporters of groups like Get the L out don’t consider: the call is coming from next door right now, but it won’t be long til it’s coming from inside the house.

What if…

`Let us say that gender critical people “win”. Trans women are wholesale BANNED from women’s spaces (how you would even police this is insane; at my own gym, there are many women who I honestly couldn’t tell you are cisgender or not. Genital inspection? A quick DNA test on the door?)
Lets say they do it- NO MORE TRANS WOMEN IN WOMEN’S SPACES! Congrats my lesbian cis-ters, you win.
How long til it’s you? After all, trans women can be straight (aka like men) or be gay or bi. But lesbians always like women… and isn’t it dangerous to have someone who is sexually arrest by women in women’s spaces…? How far away from “I don’t want to share my space with predatory men pretending to be women” is the argument “I don’t want to share my bathroom with a woman who thinks other women are sexy”. Do you think the trans people will be booted out into a magic third space that will cost the taxpayer a fortune, or even into the mens spaces you’re so convinced they belong to, and the movement against progress will just disappear? Or do you think that there won’t suddenly be stats about lesbian and gay sexual assaults used as justification for the same rhetoric against us?
Ah, let me guess! “It doesn’t happen” right?
This is when I’m extra glad it’s Get the L out who did this- you may remember Get the L out from a certain BBC article last year.
Get the L out were surveyed by the BBC, who wrote an article intimating that some lesbians feel pressured into having sex with trans women (pressuring anyone into sex, ever, is wrong- is this controversial news?). Get the L out provided a survey, asked to their own (already transphobic) members, about whether they felt pressured into sex with trans women- which is a bit like asking a pub full of tories whether you think Boris Johnson seems like a decent chap: You know the answer you’re going to get.
But do you know who else was interviewed? A lesbian named Lily Cade- who not only went on, after this article, to write a detailed blog post about how trans people should be lynched and their families gang raped- but who was already notorious herself, our little cisgender lesbian Lily- for sexually assaulting women in bathrooms. Cade’s contribution was removed when it came to light that she was a serial assaulter of other women and that she had written a blog post calling for trans genocide- but the damage was done, the article had already been read en masse by those whose minds were shaped by it.

Far be it from me to use the phrase “strange bedfellows” but it seems to me that if you want to argue against trans inclusion in women’s spaces because you’re scared of women being raped, you might not want to side with a literal serial rapist.

We’re so far past “reasonable concerns”

The overarching problem here is that gender critical thinking, to an outsider, can be made to sound reasonable and moderate- and that’s why the movement presents certain faces as it’s front runners- Joanne Rowling, a children’s book writer who just has very normal reasonable concerns about mens behaviour because of her horrific past with men (note- men, not trans women). But if Rowling is the stone upon which the gender critical movement grows under, it only takes turning that stone over to expose the rot beneath; Rowling has even scribed a new book about being a person who gets hounded online, but never decries any of the hateful people she herself has endorsed. Magdalen Burns was one of the earlier gender critical activists on twitter- Burns is well known for this, mostly because her tweet telling trans people they are “blackface actors” still does the rounds every time her name s invoked to defend gender critical speakers. Or how about another well know gender critical, this one from the LGBT+ community itself, who is someone Rowling has passed warm regards to repeatedly.

Dennis Kavanaugh is a gay man and gender critical supporter. He is also a man who said he “preferred AIDS” to trans people’s existence, because at least AIDS just killed gay people and didn’t convert them. Kavanaugh was kicked from twitter for stating these vitriolic nonsense views but after a campaign was reinstated- Rowling warmly welcomed him back. From his suspension. For giving AIDS a nostalgic glance…
Or there’s Caroline Farrow, who recently said a crossing which was coloured in the trans flag colours almost caused her to run people over- the stark difference of white lines and white, pink and light blue lines must have been shocking to her eyes I’m sure. But Farrow is also known for touting her views about our community- she’s campaigned against gay marriage, spoken out about gay and lesbian adoption, she’s known for using the word f*ggot on twitter but framing it as anything but the slur she means it as.
Farrow was recently comforted by Rowling, saying she felt bullied by the community she has habitually moved against. Rowling sent her hugs.
There is also the very obvious conclusion that Rowling chose the name Robert Galbraith for her pen name with no hint of irony that she was pretending to be a different gender to access the known privileges of men despite not being part of the group, along with Galbraith being the creator of one of the mid-century forms of Conversion Therapy, AKA torture for gay people.
This is the reality of what anti trans people endorse, and much like any sort of MLM or cult there are levels. Nobody starts off as deranged as stating that AIDS is good or that gay people are mentally unwell- again, it starts off as “they’re letting MEN use WOMEN’S spaces”, “they’re forcing us to use chest feeding instead of breast feeding”- that’s the right wing reactionary playbook. Use shocking statements as if they’re fact and build on it, as a spider does a coccoon- before you know it, you’re trapped.
Gender critical thinking is a pathway to radicalisation.

All of this is what these groups- LGB alliance, Get the L out, and so on and so on are either unwittingly or- as I suspect, very wittingly, are pushing: the demonisation of transgender people feeds into a very rational fear of non trans men, to whom accusations and blame stick as successfully as oil in a hot pan. But the lack of nuance, the intentional misstep of ignoring the huge chasm of difference- whether you believe trans people are who they say or not- between a trans woman and a cis man, is the sort of hilariously glib oversight that would be funny if it wasn’t so deeply, deeply dangerous. Whilst the world rages against trans women for existing, cis men can continue their downward march into Andrew Tate’s male supremacy videos, spiking, wilful misrepresentation of consent and more- if you want to deal with those problems, get mad at the offenders.

Mayhaps you still need to be convinced.
Trans women and drag queens are two very different groups. Trans women are trans women, and it’s fair to say that the vast majority of drag queens are cis gay men.
Recently in Leeds there was a protest by quite literal fascist group “Patriotic Alternative” who showed up in laughably small numbers despite Leeds being their founding city, to protest a drag queen reading a story book to children at the library. They were so desperate to protect children that they set off a fire alarm, terrifying children, to do so. Why? Their rationale is that dressing in drag is provocative, sexual and inappropriate and is essentially paedophilic in nature.
Let’s unpack that. A gay man in a dress surrounded by parents and children is somehow being paedophilic by reading a book to children. Why? Is it the dress, the makeup? If so, it’s hardly a progressive feminist standpoint to agree with- do you think makeup and dresses are innately sexual or sexy? Is showing skin? Is dressing up as a female impressionist somehow sexual? I’ve done drag myself and I can assure you it’s not sexy- having a comb stabbing me in the temple, losing feeling in my toes for 4 months because of the heels, abrasions where the bra cut in, being unable to move my face because my eyebrows are glued down and covered with concealer… it’s not sexy in the slightest- it’s fun, it’s escapist and I did it to pay homage to my favourite metal singer- if anything it fits in with the carefree nature of children who don’t associate anything sinister because they simply don’t know about it. There is, as I keep reiterating, a huge difference between a drag queen calling a gay man a tart for having his nipples out in a gay bar, and a drag queen reading children a book. The only people guilty of sexualising are the creeps outside with “stop grooming our kids” written on their signs- and I have to tell you, if you see a drag queen as sexy you may well be closer to the LGBT+ than you think.

But this is more proof- because gender critical people agree with Patriotic Alternative and have indeed arranged their own protests against drag queen story time, stating that drag is parodying womanhood rather than simple gender bending, an act that’s taken place since gender constructs didn’t have a name but were as well known as any other type of socialised behaviour. They’re entitled to that view- but endorsing the slippery slope argument of literal fascists and ignoring the connotations that you’re stepping deftly over the line from “just womanly concerns” into “I hate several letters in the LGBT+” is another reason I’m stupefied that the number of people brazenly admitting they align with these beliefs continues to slowly edge up.

A reporter from a radical feminist group attended the rally against patriotic alternative and condemned both sides as just as bad as each other- despite the LGBT+ side cheering children and parents, reading out supportive messages and, and I can’t reiterate this enough- protesting against literally fascist people. Nothing like “fine people on both sides”ing an argument where one side is gay, lesbian, bi, trans, non binary and every other letter of our family and the other side are white supremacists- by all means feel free to socialise with some of those fine PA supporting men- but remember at the start when I mentioned straight men who cross people’s boundaries…?

This piece is a warning to the people I can’t stand to address directly because I have such a low opinion of them: if you’re LGBT+ and gender critical, you’re gleefully signing your own death warrant. You don’t have to accept and love trans people, but you sure as shit have to respect their existence- not the least because it’s the decent thing to do- because if you don’t you’re paving the path for your own struggles, and if you’re too blind to see it, take a look at your allies left and right. Some prominent “gender critical” thinkers:
Matt Walsh who hates trans people, and thinks women shouldn’t work, and cheerfully calls himself “fascist”
Ben Shapiro who has regularly stated he thinks women are inferior to men
Vladimir Putin who fosters the idea that gay people being murdered in Russia is fine because we’re equivalent to dogs
Jordan Peterson, a man who, when cornered about the comparison of racist and homophobic thinking, realised in real time how wrong he was- and still espouses those views
Joe Rogan
a human cigarette packet who hates everyone who isn’t a straight white man with veins popping out of his forehead

As I said before, strange bedfellows: all men who think women are inferior to men (all of them have either directly or indirectly said as much), all of them who think gay people are disgusting- keep working with them, I’m sure they’re definitely wrong about racism, sexism, having sex with younger women, homophobia and male supremacy- but somehow right about transphobia.

When we’re all walled off, taken away from our lives by the people you stand behind shouting transphobic nonsense, remember that it was people like me, and every trans person you screamed slurs at, who warned you what you were spearheading, and remember that it was me who told you- wake the L up.

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.

Lets be real- debating with bigotry is pointless

By Daviemoo

It’s probably highly ironic for me to write this article- half my life is spent posting hot takes and arguing with people. But this needs to be said and set down somewhere, and I’d hope it detoxifies some of the online arena: Debating bigots is not a useful way to invest your time. Speak your truth to the internet at large, reply to those pushing bigotry- but don’t think sitting down for a chat will help, or change the minds of those drunk on moral panic.

If someone proved me wrong on a point I was fearsomely defensive about, I worry that I’d be an asshole, but I try (as I think we all should) to be contrite- in fact, this very weekend a black gay man called me out on my ignorance around the POC gay dating culture and I agreed and asked for help from people for resources which I really need to follow up on. I don’t want to ever be ignorant of POC issues because I really want to be an ally, but we all need to remember that we’re insulated from these issues as people who aren’t POC and need to think about them. I failed here but I have to work to rectify it.

I’m not perfect and I know that my ignorance can walk close to bigotry, because ignorance is bigotry acknowledged and embraced. So I try really hard to fight against that. Sinking into the warm, comforting pool of being sure you’re right without questioning that is too easy- it’s too simple to imagine that because you feel a certain way on a topic, you’re right. And there will always- no matter how hideous your take- be a wealth of people on the internet or even in real life- be people willing to take your side. Your take being popular does NOT mean it’s correct.

When it comes to debate, it’s a useful tool when used correctly. Both sides follow the rules and present their arguments and counter arguments- no interrupting, shouting, sniping etc.

That’s not what online debate does.

There’s a clutch of smart, enterprising left wing people on apps like tiktok who make a wonderful show of debating – if it can be called that -with right wing commentarians who think their FeElInGs on a matter will concrete the issue. And don’t get me wrong, as always I’m trying to look at it uncritically but am biased as a honking great lefty.

And to those people, I’d like you to know I admire you for trying and I’m certainly not saying stop. I can’t stay civil with people I know are talking in ignorance and doing so willingly.

The issue comes here: if I’m proved to be wrong, I’m more than happy to admit it, to do the work behind the scenes to become better. Society seems to think that shifting positions on issues is flip flopping, or weak- but if you’re wrong about them and admit that, and explain why you’re wrong- can people really hold that against you? I see growth in contrition. If you see weakness in backing a well debunked point- be it the existence of a secret cabal of spies like Q-anon or more- then you’re backing being a loudmouth… Which is enough for some but not for me.

When it comes down to debate, both sides have to take it in good faith- and a lot of the right wing debaters don’t do this- from making points up on the spot, making up figures, wilfully misinterpreting the data to prove a flawed point, and more- again, I’m looking at this from a flawed and biased perspective but I see this REGULARLY online. These debaters don’t WANT to debate- they want to rant, to stir up other people in the tornado of their feelings and suck up the oxygen. Debating with them is pointless. They know they’re lying, or spinning falsehoods, they know they’re doing what they shouldn’t. You can’t, and you won’t improve the situation by sharing your platform with them, even if you do feel that you “won” the debate. They still got to whip up the people who agree with them.

Lets take one of my favourite examples of this: transphobia.

This weekend I was piled on on twitter, because an abuse prevention charity listed a partner not respecting your pronouns and personal identity as abuse- and I saw a tweet vehemently disagreeing, and claiming that they had experienced REAL abuse.

Bearing in mind I’m a cis man but a gay man I’ve been misgendered a fair amount in my life. “Girly boy, girl, girly, little bitch, wo-man, woman” over and over and over- do you realise how demeaning it is? I’ve never once struggled with my gender identity, but being constantly referred to as a girl, a woman, a female when I’m not was bullying and it got me very upset more than once. Is that not real abuse? Was it not real abuse when, when I was nine, two boys cornered me in a garden near my grandma’s house and pushed me on the floor and made me feel them against my will while telling me I was a girl, a gay, puff, faggot, queer, bum boy. That was the tip of the iceberg and the physical things they did then and after were awful. But all of it sticks with me, not just the physical abuse but the excitement in their voices as they called me a little girl and used their fully grown, adult, cis, male bodies to hold me down. The way they enjoyed hearing me panic and deny their insults. You don’t get to decide what is and isn’t abuse because you aren’t affected by it or haven’t gone through it. These experiences are the reason it took me a long time to become OK with the casual lingo that come from shows like RuPaul’s drag race- my friend once said “hey girl” when he walked into my living room and I actually snapped at him because it reminded me of that.

On to the main reason for this article – I’ve used an app a while ago called TERFblocker, which automatically blocked thousands of anti trans accounts. I’m glad of it- the dogpile that was just a flirting annoyance this weekend threatened to be a hundred times worse. The instigator kept copying my tweets to his followers- hundreds of them openly complained that I’d blocked them when we’d never interacted, calling me a snowflake and a weirdo whilst knowing nothing about me except that they were blocked- blocked because they were on the terfblocker list. The idea that I owed these people my attention, that I should leave my profile open for them to attack me because someone they like doesn’t like me, that I should allow them the space to comment bile at me, is ridiculous… If you don’t like me, block me. I can assure you I won’t lose one second of sleep. The reason I use that app cheerfully was a huge dog pile I was in last year. I even argued with the heinous anti trans speaker that is Maya Forstater who was, as always, waxing philosophical about bathrooms. Hundreds- HUNDREDS of people talking about how supporting trans people is condoning rape- which, in case it’s not clear, I’ve been through more than once – I’m “supporting people in their delusions” and on and on and on… it was exhausting and I used the terfblocker to drown them out because I had nothing but the accusations the terfs throw at we “TRAs” thrown at me- suicide jokes, insults, rape condoning, questions about my gender, sex, penis size, sexual proclivities… One woman told me I was bisexual because I’d date a trans man- I don’t know about you but I don’t spend my life imagining someone’s penis in their trousers when I flirt with them. If you do then so be it- I just see life in a fundamentally different way than transphobes. We’re all billions of neurones, electricity flying from connection to connection. What the body became because of phenotypes and all of that is superfluous to who you are in your head- your body is just there, an extension of who you are, and of course nature doesn’t reconcile birth sex with your gender sometimes- it’s horrendously complex, as is whatever makes us have our sexuality, as is whatever makes us have brown or blue eyes, as is whatever makes our height what it is. Genitals aren’t completely unimportant to me, but if the man I love has a vagina am I going to let that stop me from being with him, any more than I would if he had a small, or huge penis, or erection problems, or one testicle…? Fuck no. And if being a woman is an experience it’s clearly not linked to your sex or to your gender- and therefore anyone can experience it and therefore become a woman if they experience it- and if it is purely biological then has every single person who calls themselves a woman been through this laundry list of obstacles to claim the title?

Ultimately, it was that rude awakening of thousands of people calling me a beard, making fun of my appearance, telling me I was a rape enabler and a misogynist, that made me realise these people don’t WANT to debate. They don’t WANT their minds changed, or to be given new information that might make them think differently, that might make them believe that perhaps what they’re so invested in pushing is a false flag event. It’s about rage, about moral panics, about pushing the agenda that the people you don’t like are perverts, and monsters and paedophiles who will snatch and corrupt your children, will stop you living your life with liberty, take away your rights and freedoms… sound familiar? See the blowback from the civil rights movement, see trying to end apartheid, the anti jewish sentiment during world war two- this moral panic against a group is not new, but it is frightening every single time.

If transphobia evaporated overnight- not transphobes, I hasten to say, but the ideology (I don’t wish harm to transphobes, I just want them to wake up), trans folk and cis folk could unite against harmful ideologies still perpetuated by a patriarchal society that fails ALL women, regardless of cis identity or not.
The idea that women are still chattel, property, need to be controlled, disciplined, mocked, sexualised- exists ALL AROUND our society. How do I know? The same way I know trans people are just normal humans. I exist around it all.

I wish transphobes could hear the shit men come out with when they aren’t around. The disgusting shit I’ve heard in changing rooms (yes sometimes I’ve called it out even in my fear, no not always, I am not that brave and I’m curious as to who would condone it if I didn’t speak out). Trans women- or trans men- are not threats to cis women. Cis men though… that is a different thing.

I’m certainly not saying it’s all cis men of course, and I’m sure i’ll need to put this disclaimer- ironically to placate the very men it IS about, but no it isn’t all cis men. But it’s far too many.

I veer wildly away sometimes from saying what I want to say. That women should be celebrated for how amazing they are, venerated for fighting their place in a world that proclaims their value whilst debating their reproductive rights, right to show emotion, right to wear what they want, wear makeup, have the audacity to have periods, or to not have periods, or shave, or not shave, be loud, be silent, marry, not marry, have kids, not have kids, adopt, not adopt- and this is irrespective of intersectionality with things like skin colour or sexuality – black trans women (I met a lovely black trans woman at trans day of remembrance recently- her speech was badass!) have the rawest deal of all, and that’s without including the ostracization by white trans folk AND cis women. The reason I veer from it is not because I don’t feel it’s the case that women should be uplifted and celebrated for who they are but because I feel like it’s patronising for me to suggest it- I’m a cis man and it seems performative. But women are amazing, regardless of gender identity- purely for keeping up the fight in the face of a world that barely hides the face of grudging tolerance to the “quiet ones”.

Equally, applying a label to all trans people is also foolish. Many gender critical people claim that “all/ most trans people are predators and perverts just wanting access to women’s spaces”. How farcical is this statement when you swap the minority- which has been done before! “All gay men want access to men’s bathrooms for nefarious sexual purposes”. No. We don’t. Some? Sure. Should we all be denigrated for the perversions of a minority in a minority?

I don’t know what makes a woman, or a man, or a genderless person. Do you? Because if you fall to any biological processes there will ALWAYS be outliers. People born without ovaries, wombs, women born with testicles, women born without breasts, men born with ovaries, men (like me!) who grow temporary breasts at puberty, women who grow beards… biology is far too complex to rely on as a hard and fast rule of “a man or a woman is x” because there will always be a man or a woman who is y.

Lets also look at the gender binary again – the idea that people can deny that gender is a spectrum is laughable when explained thus.

If a binary is either 0 or 1, yes or no, x or y that is an absolute- and again, if you vary even slightly then there is NOT a 0 or 1 option. If a man is tall, dark and handsome and I’m short, blonde and ugly then man isn’t binary.

Please don’t think that I’m claiming to be an expert on sex and gender- I don’t want to be tarred with the same brush as those who revel in their ignorance like Stock et al., but I fail to see how these points can be in dispute.

As an ally, I’m tired of the endless rowing. And that’s what I’ve realised- it is ENDLESS. You can have the “trans women shouldn’t be allowed to go into women’s toilets” row every single day for a month on twitter, and debunk every bogus claim, and fight back on every talking point, and discuss every statistic- and it never changes because these people flatly DO NOT WANT to debate. It’s not about debate. They have assigned their woes to trans people as the arbiters of their misery- it’s trans women who cause their tribulations in life and nothing else can change that mindset, even proof to the contrary.

Back to the main topic- debate.

If it were pointful to debate right wing folk I’d be interested in partaking in it, but I’ve seen too many examples of the right wing folk being proven wrong or their arguments being picked apart and the instant reversion to insults. Every time I’ve tried to unpick an anti gay/anti trans argument recently, the IMMEDIATE reaction from the injured party has been to make a “hard drives need checked” comment.
The irony of this isn’t lost on me- most anti gay and anti trans arguments are recycled from the panic of the 70s and 80s where it was insinuated that we were all perverted. But considering the side making these accusations also regularly listens to folk like Allison Bailey who talks about young healthy breasts never knowing a lover’s caress, I cant help but feel aggrieved that this is overlooked and my simple observation that gay men are allowed to be gay means I’m sent homophobic memes.

When it comes to debating people who sink instantly to these tactics, it’s pointless. There is no interest in learning or hearing the other side, and you can’t argue against people’s conviction that they’re right in the fact of scant evidence: much like arguing against flat lies, arguing against right wing opinions is pointlessly like screaming into a pillow.

The truth is a stubborn little rock that is only what it is. But a lie, or an opinion, can be elastic, and fit whatever you want it to. You don’t need to read the facts that there haven’t been trans attackers bombarding women’s bathrooms, and any problems have been caused by cisgendered men when you’re absolutely convinced that all trans women are lurking quietly, waiting for their chance and you’re just so lucky to have avoided it.

I wish I knew how to make positive steps forward and to stop this endless deluge of trans exclusion, hatred and misinformation that is being thrown around the internet, but I’m not that smart, or patient. But something has to change. Trans people cant wait.

As I always say, I have empirical experience of being around all sorts of trans people- asexual trans women, bisexual trans men, gay trans men, lesbian trans women… every one of them is, frankly, a hair’s breadth from being almost boringly normal. Their medical file is – there’s no other way to say this- fuck all to do with me. I don’t often stare at the genitals of my friends or strangers (not unless I want to and we all consent), so perhaps we can extend this bare minimum standardised treatment of cis people to trans folk too- and maybe we can stop believing people who talk endlessly about debate.

Your understanding of someone does not limit your ability to respect them

By Daviemoo

It seems almost farcical that in a world as complex, diverse and nuanced as ours, it needs to be said that people will live different lives than you will; that they will experience the world in a different way than you. It seems that too many people are stuck in a mindset of “people who aren’t like me are wrong/ defective”. This goes from horrific mindsets like white supremacy to casual homophobia- and it’s so easy to fix. But the question we need to ask as a society is- why are so many people unwilling to do the bare minimum of showing respect until they understand- and, in fact, even if they don’t.

I could be very far off base with this article, but I’ve noticed that political allegiance is akin to a protected characteristic in the heads of many folk these days- not specifically a right wing issue, but close to it. Speaking critically of someone because they hold conservative views is often compared to hate speech which, as someone who has been victim to literal hate speech before- is laughable.

Let’s start with two ideologies which, in my eyes, are closely linked if not always paralleled in people’s heads- gender critical thinking and right wing allegiance.

To a gender critical thinker, being called a TERF is often conflated with being slurred. I find it hard and almost comical to understand why people see this as hate speech- the essence of hate speech is as simple as, someone with higher societal standing than you insulting an immutable, unchangeable characteristic which many in society see as undesirable. I’m afraid, little gender critical readers, that being called a TERF isn’t hate speech and it’s this simple: You can change gender critical beliefs. You can’t change being trans. You are the societal outliers, but denigrating someone because of a characteristic they can’t control means you are engaging in hate speech- you can change, trans people can’t.

The same with right wingers. It seems that right wing thinkers believe their entire identity, their whole ideology, is under threat- that you “can’t say anything these days” without the WOKE CANCEL MOB coming for you.

a cardboard sign, with "we all bleed the same colour" written on it is held aloft by a woman's hand in front of beautiful stonework on a building.
Photo by Mathias P.R. Reding on Pexels.com

The people who think this must use the phrase “free speech” more times a day than I drink coffee- and that’s saying something. But it seems that no matter how many times you remind these people that free speech very much only applies to government censorship of individuals. But even in this case legislation exists to curtail speech that can encourage or embolden terrorism etc: sorry free speech warriors, you’re fighting for a cause that doesn’t exist. Free speech is the white whale of entitlement- an ironic statement considering it’s usually slavering racists desperate to throw around racial epithets without consequence who yell so loudly about it.

I also find the endless discourse around the gender binary itself quite comical at this point: there is no gender binary. Let me put that in simple, if reductive, terms: a binary means the answer is either 1 or 0, yes or no. There is no wiggle room, nothing in the middle, no outliers. It is light or dark, up or down- nothing betwixt.

Let’s pretend that the gender binary then, is a fact- if you made 3 rules for what a man is- Tall, beard, flannel shirt – but meet someone who is tall, bearded and is wearing a plain shirt- then that person can’t be counted as a “man”… but does that mean (we’re in a binary here) that he’s a woman? For a shirt? No. So he sits further down the “scale” of manhood, manliness… ah. So it’s not binary is it.

Gender exists in a huge, diverse and 3D spectrum, and again- in a world as massive and diverse as ours, gender can be experienced in different ways by every human being walking this earth with some commonalities. It is a unique experience for what I imagine is a huge amount of people, and it does not “belong” to a certain group, either cis or trans. It just is, and will continue to be no matter how humans, with their reductive writings on how YOU CAN’T BE A WOMAN IF YOU DONT X continue to try to wrestle this inexorable concept into a box.

And when it comes to the definition of existence under sex- well, intersex people exist and they’re just as valid as people who aren’t intersex…

Again though, when it comes more specifically to right wing ideology, there’s a certain conviction that you’re born right wing, grow right wing and die right wing and it’s as immutable as skin colour or sexuality.

It isn’t.

The reason right wingers seem to have been agitated so, is just how many younger people, brought up around right wing parents, in right wing fixtures are turning away from hypocrisy politics – let’s be honest, that’s what a significant portion of the ideology the more extreme right follow- rears it’s head.

I can give examples here- from Donald Trump decrying cancel culture for being removed from Twitter, only to create a social media platform that explicitly forbids negative comments around Trump himself or the platform, to Boris Johnson trying to disband or limit the efficacy of an investigative panel because he is about to be investigated by it (again…), or right wing pundits like Isabel Oakeshott defending Stanley Johnson by saying he does indeed feel people up, touch you inappropriately- but it’s not a police matter because SHE feels comfortable with it…

Conflating your choice of ideology or politics with something as bone deep as your actual identity is incorrect. If education on certain topical issues can change people’s political alignment, how is it comparable to something like my sexuality- even if I never touched another man again for the rest of my life I would still be gay, my friend would still be trans and feel trans regardless of her body or her hormones… these things are immutable.

This now leads me into the topic that made me write this piece: understanding.

A woman lays on a bench reading a book
Photo by John Ray Ebora on Pexels.com

Understanding is brilliant, and the saying “walk a mile in someone’s shoes” is a clever way of giving people an understanding of others’ lives, and a way of furthering equality and equity. If you look at half of modern media, messages encoded into our most classic films or our favourite TV shows give us tiny flavours of people’s lives and lifestyles, and often suggest to us that perhaps we don’t know what people are suffering, how their lives are or why they are the way they are- and from this message we gain a tiny particle of understanding, furthering the idea that perhaps we are not superior, perhaps we should try and accept, tolerate (a hated word but true in this context) other people and forge better relationships through understanding.

But I want to take that thought a little further; why do we need to understand someone to accept their legitimacy?

I don’t understand the mechanics of how a person with a certain disability negotiates their daily life- but I don’t need to, to understand that they deserve to do so. I don’t understand what it must be like to be a person of colour who cannot (and, it goes without saying, shouldn’t have to) hide their skin colour to avoid discrimination in the street- but I know they don’t deserve to face that. And I know that many cis women & trans men have biological processes going on inside that I will not experience- but I don’t need to directly experience everything that everyone goes through to know that they’re still, to coin a phrase that gender critical people do seem to enjoy so, “worthy of respect”.

Now, I can hear the right wingers/ gender critical folk who may stumble somehow across this piece asking me why we don’t flip that thinking- why we don’t imagine THEIR plight.

I do. I have. And I decided long ago that the frustration of being called bigoted, the difficulties of always being enraged about something being “cancelled” etc, and the endless thought shifting to avoid admitting to hypocrisy is a terrible fate to bear- but it’s not one brought on by “the other side”. And if you need to understand how I decided that I don’t need to respect you – your ideologues are the proof. I’m sure you feel the same about me.

If you can genuinely look at lacklustre politicians who clearly do not care about people at large unless they can enrich themselves from them, or if you can continuously denigrate minorities- if you can condemn behaviour like doxxing then cheerfully partake in it- you don’t deserve my sympathy, my understanding. You made your own bed.

Ultimately, the simple message from the piece is that acceptance shouldn’t hinge on understanding- so the next time you find yourself ready to rail against someone, ask yourself if that person is worthy of your respect whether you can comprehend their plight or not?

The BBC just doubled down on it’s transphobic hitpiece

By Daviemoo

If you read the desperate flailing attempt at journalism that was the BBC’s recent expulsion against trans people, I feel sorry for you- It’s wording is still rattling around my brain and frustrating me. I, and what I take as thousands of other people received a similarly poorly written response from the BBC where they endorsed their own transphobic nonsense. This state sponsored culture war against trans people hurts the LGBTQ+ community and cis women- the only benefactors? Cis men. It’s past time the community and it’s allies take this besmirching with patience- and take the fight back to the media.

I get asked perhaps once, twice a week, “are you trans?” because I spend a lot of time talking about trans issues. I don’t think it matters whether I am or not, I’m standing up for a minority who are being dragged through our offal filled rivers backwards and I don’t have to be part of that minority. The sad fact is as well that people just don’t listen to trans people about their own issues, even if you platform them- they will gasp, exclaim and swear if a cis person explains the horrors that trans people face, but blithely ignore trans activists who speak out.

Which is why I’m so disappointed in cis allies- there are many, many people who agree that this endless gushing rhetoric in the presses about trans people and their allies is wrong, sick, disgusting, inaccurate- and dangerous. For only so long can this thumb twiddling “we’re trying to sit in the middle but here’s another piece about how terrible trans people are and no rebuttal from trans people themselves” narrative be pushed before it will- IT WILL- spill over into physical violence. And how will that go? If the victim is murdered, they can’t speak. If they survive their words won’t be published. And if they fight back- dangerous trans people attack innocent defenders! It’s a tale as old as time, and as frightening to minorities as it may seem- we cannot win for losing. And with what seems to be most media outlets happy to continue to platform anti trans rhetoric, our possibilities of publishing rebuttals, statements- anything that allows a platform for trans folk and their allies- continues to shrink.

Gender Critical people seem to believe that this mainstreaming of their beliefs is a sign that they’re “winning”- forgetting as they always do that hateful ideology is disturbingly available in the mainstream and it doesn’t make it right- or even the moral majority. Racism was widely platformed as racial segregation was rolled back in the US- in the 70s, 80s- the 90s it was common to read anti gay articles.

The parallels that run between the anti gay moral panic and the current transphobic ones are so blatant once pointed out that it seems amazing that transphobia persists in the face of proof that it’s recycled homophobia.

Arguments we’ve heard before from:
“If we accept the gays we’ll be asked to sleep with them next”

“They’re destroying the modern way of life”

“They’re perverts and we shouldn’t have to share facilities with them”

Are these facets of the moral panic proven? No- no proof of any of it exists.

In fact, the prevalence of the opposite side being involved in their arguments against trans people is almost comical. How often anti gay preachers are found in clinches with other men- one has to wonder how many voices against trans folk are simply fetishists of trans people in the privacy of their own home? One wonders how many moral panics are sparked or inflamed by people furious with their own biological urges- desperate to place blame for attraction at the feet of those who simply exist in the bodies and states they have and are.

Back to the media- the regular dirge of stories demonising trans people serves only to enable and embolden a society that conflates “different” with “devious”.

From Ofcom leaving stonewall’s diversity scheme to the BBC’s increasingly frequent promotion of hateful ideology, this problem is widespread, systemic- and being pushed by a handful of loud voices and a smattering of quiet ones.

The idea that trans rights are in conflict with womens’ rights just isn’t true. Starting with the simple fact that over 50% of women in the UK agree that trans women are women, and even more women agree that trans women are not a threat to cis women- but even if you don’t agree, the confusion and stupidity around this debate continues to frustrate those in it’s periphery along with those it directly involves.

If anti trans people believe they should be able to challenge anyone they don’t feel is cis, there will be a great number of women whose looks do not fit this mysterious “not patriarchal but doesn’t fit my idea of feminine”, who are challenged pointlessly- regardless of whether they were trans or not. I have to wonder how the “we can always tell” crowd plan to police these things. Sometimes in public I will see someone and have absolutely no idea what gender they are and the fact and key difference is- I don’t care.

The point that never gets spoken about in detail is that the concerns so regularly espoused by anti trans activists are already addressed. In existing legislation, there exists exemptions where, as a last resort, trans women can be separated- there is this elusive victory the gender critical group want- already delivered. But it isn’t enough, and this is where the obvious lie crumbles whilst somehow still standing. It’s not and it’s never been about a credible argument against trans people: it’s always been about demonising a minority. Every single instance of a trans person failing to be a paragon of virtue is instantly snapped up by a group and banded about, used to justify pre-conceptions. But of course a group as large and varied as trans people has darker elements- should the whole group be castigated because of the behaviour of a few? The frightening answer from gender critical believers is – yes.

The BBC

The article the BBC wrote was terrible in many ways- not the least, poor writing. Cobbled together with supposed months of research, the article is contrived and clearly has an agenda driving it.

I attach below the body of the response to the complaint that everyone who wrote to the BBC received;

The complaint is masterful in only the flippancy and dismissal of it’s tone. Not one point I made was addressed, as my initial complaint asked the BBC why it wished to place itself at odds with trans people and platform dangerous stories which would- not could, but would- increase the threat to them. They particularly focus on the survey they included.

Let’s speak about this survey.

Hosted by “Get the L out”, an organisation formed by transphobic lesbians to pigeonhole trans lesbians and trans women in general, 40 out of 80 respondents confirmed that they had felt pressured into sex with trans lesbians. I can’t speak to these experiences- I don’t know the people involved and I certainly wouldn’t say that no trans people would pressure others for sex- its proscriptive to say that you know how a minority would behave. But does it not perhaps seem a bit odd that the BBC are happy to use a survey, conducted by an already trans averse organisation, completed by 80 people, half of whom agree with the transphobic rhetoric of being pressured into sex? Of course people will agree with the transphobic question if they are part of a transphobic organisation… It’s hardly a reputable source.

But lets examine the respondents further: one of the 40 lesbians who responded confirming they felt pressured into sex with trans people – is a self admitted pervert who has sexually assaulted multiple women, talked women she has had sex with out of using sexual safety products, and with vast corroborative stories from her victims and an apology from her freely available on the internet- so yet again we hark back to my earlier point that the loudest voices are usually talking about themselves. Seems that the “fully researched article” is somewhat hypocritical, as this very important part was either omitted by mistake – or purposefully.

To allow a person who has literally admitted to sexual assault to cast aspersions on others is highly ironic and – I would think we can all agree- admittedly poor journalism. Hardly the type of person whose words can be trusted.

Spurious allegations from dubious sources seems to be what’s accepted for BBC journalism in the current climate – a worrying development but not one unfamiliar to the minorities the BBC have historically worked to denigrate.

Further to this though, more allegations in the article can be debunked: a section of writing is devoted to stickers with the inclusive pride flag as a backing, which state “Genital preferences are transphobic”. This is, as anyone sane in the fight for trans equality knows, a transphobic nonsense phrase. Genital preferences, most trans people will tell you, are not transphobic- stating you won’t even entertain the idea of dating a trans person because of what you assume are their genitals – is. Quite a simple concept. The proof that these stickers belong to the gender critical people is fairly blatant- they are stuck up with other transphobic stickers, even in the photos in the article- but a thoroughly debunked letter stating the same thing was sent to several organisations in early 2020 along with this sticker. The letter was quickly linked back to… a small cadre of gender critical people.

Is this what we now accept as, and what passes for, thorough, rounded journalism? Or are we to accept that our national broadcaster are willing to sell out their credibility because they have been asked to promote and push a ridiculous culture war, aimed at a group of people who are easy to demonise?

My followup to the BBC’s offensively blithe response is below for your perusal:

And worse still than the BBC’s uncaring response: more journalists come out to defend the piece and the writer!

The overarching problem is this glass shield of “impartiality” which the BBC wishes to stand behind. I have seen no articles by trans people or trans allies denouncing the ties that gender critical people have to the far right – from the confused collaboration of a group of TERFS who started off protesting with – but then were attacked (and one even stabbed by) the proud boys, to Andy Ngo- literal fascist- being given a press badge at the LGB Alliance conference- one has to wonder at what point those who aren’t so extreme may decide that siding with gender critical people puts them too close to the far right.

Where also are the pieces highlighting the problems that trans folk face on the daily, from a healthcare system which seems to actively work against them to allowances the government make in legislation against conversion therapy to allow people -people who will be seeking conversion therapy because they hate or fear themselves and wish to change themselves- to give “informed consent” for therapy – effectively making any bans useless: Nobody can give informed consent to having dangerous, ineffective therapy for something they are castigated for all day every day. Those seeking, or told to go to, conversion therapy, should be intensively protected- not put under the mental strain of this horrific practice. It’s also been revealed as I wrote this piece that the government has been lobbied by a group who perform this evil practice, which is one of the myriad reasons for the delays in banning it!

It’s painfully obvious to anyone, from the very edges of this ongoing tirade against the trans community right to trans people themselves, that the BBC is determined to whip up continuation of this ridiculous and confected war against a minority, as a distraction from the failings of a government who has let down it’s populace more times in six months than most governments during their entire tenure.

Trans people are an easy demographic to blame on the face of things- some trans people become transients, kicked out of their houses by uncaring parents. Forced into sex work to be able to live and then charged by police who even in 2021 do not understand that sometimes life forces people into this avenue, their criminal records are happily displayed by gender critical people as “proof” that trans people are perverted. Context is key, but when you have a hateful agenda to push, anything that sits adjacent to your narrative is sufficient, the full extent discarded.

As this normalisation of hate continues, the LGBTQ+ community MUST set aside it’s petty squabbling and come together- we must be a shield for each other and ourselves, lest we be thrown back to the days where dangerous activism is the only way to be heard. Some of us are not only willing, but ready to embrace a role as a dissident if it means upsetting the status quo- if the status quo is to begin to regularly contain hateful propaganda against members of the community.

I’ve no doubt that a corner will be turned down the line where trans people finally see some light in the darkness, where their acceptance becomes mainstreamed- the question, the reason I sometimes can’t sleep at night, the rock in my stomach worry is – how many of our trans siblings are we fated to lose before people open their eyes to the empty hate spewed forth from institutions happy to foster lies and empty propaganda?

Until police stop blaming victims for their crimes, the UK will not be a safe place

By Daviemoo

After a spate of anti LGBTQIA crimes, the met police have released “safety tips” for rainbow community members- tips like “avoid dark areas” and “don’t listen to music” and now I as a member of the community ask the police – when will you attack the perpetrators instead of chastising the victims?

(In this article I’ll regularly reference women and LGBTQIA people- I understand that there are women in the LGBTQIA, so please bear with me – as an inclusive feminist, and as a man who sees intersectionality and the commonality of struggles between all women and all other members of the LGBTQIA, I want to write a thorough and fair piece to anyone and everyone who experiences the unhelpfulness propagated by the rhetoric of the advice above. I would never purposely discredit or prioritise any one group’s difficulties over another, but I write from my own experience as a cis gay man and unfortunately suffer from my own bias as I write. I understand your struggles as best I can and I hope this article does justice to it, as much as it can but would be more than happy to edit or add as may suit you. Please also bear in mind I’ll be discussing sensitive themes.)

I RECIEVED A SURPRISING amount of blowback to a video I created speaking about my displeasure with the narrative the met police are offering regarding the spike in anti LGBT+ sentiment in the UK. A few people said they felt I was making parallels that didn’t exist- that the police were simply suggesting people take accountability for their safety- as if those of us who are regularly offered this waffling and useless nonsense for our own protection are normally the hapless first to die at the start of a horror movie- we hear our boyfriend being brutally slaughtered downstairs but still go to investigate, we run up the stairs and hide in the closet instead of going for the front door. The suggestion that women or LGBT+ people don’t take our safety seriously, and need to be offered empty advice like “don’t go into the dark areas like parks” is ludicrous.

It’s also proscriptive towards those of us- of which there are many – in the community, male, female or enby who don’t live in some theoretical well lit, safe, upscale apartment block with security and friendly neighbours. LGBT+ people take many shapes and forms, and can live anywhere from town houses to run down flats- and suggesting we avoid the very areas we may need to live in due to personal circumstance is insane, and feels like a rebuke against people whose lives are difficult already due to circumstance- from being ousted by family members to having life altering trauma that prevents full time employment, warning us away from areas that may be unseemly is pointless when we may live there as our only option.

Much like the edging-very-close-but-not-just-saying-it’s-your-fault rhetoric, this is another patent attempt by an ineffective and indifferent police force to off-shift blame for crime from those who feel entitled to commit them, knowing the advice focuses on the narrative of the victim placing themselves at peril rather than the perpetrator being discouraged. Women, cis or trans are asked about what they were wearing, gay men are judged for their presentation or- as was the case for both myself and a male friend- we’re asked if we went to places we didn’t even know are cruising spots, if we went wanting sex then regretted it, judged, shamed and then dispensed with no justice. This is the reality of life for women, LGBT+ people- and who knows how women who are LGBT+- and then WOC who are LGBT+ cope- presumably we are increasingly urged to entrench ourselves in our homes, seal every gap, sit quietly in a panic room and wait for change because apparently our mere presences provoke people to attack.

Taken from the ONS reports

Look at the increase in anti LGBT+ hate crime in the UK from 2011 to last year. No doubt the figures will have changed due to lockdown and in 2022 the met police will celebrate a job well done, failing to realise that when you keep people separate, their ability to attack each other is limited. But a dip in figures is not a change in sentiment.

The frustration in regards to this advice is that again, much as women are punitively advised not to go out, to carry their keys defensively, to check in with friends, walk in groups, plan their routes- it fails to address the root causes.

A society that commodifies the (in particular) female body as something that people are entitled to regardless of consent, that places the onus of blame on the visibility of skin or the friendliness of the individual is a broken society. And now to extend those less than useless (as evidenced by the tragic case of Blessing Olusegun, Sarah Everard, the horrendous acts of the Plymouth incel, the fact that 97% of surveyed women- NINETY SEVEN PERCENT- have experienced sexual assault) guidance again as if they are of any use at all, other than to tell us to lock ourselves away for our own protection, is insanity.

I feel like I’m quintessentially British when I write- I throw in a smattering of posh words and moan a lot so here are some things I’d like to see the police actually implement or action to perhaps make some sort of dent in this endless rhetoric that is damaging to anyone but cishet, and sometimes just cis, men.

Stop victim blaming

Suggesting limp talking points like “don’t go out in the dark- don’t listen to music- wear running shoes” is placing the responsibility on us- of course it’s common sensical and we all do it- so why waste the time telling us when you could be creating sustained education campaigns to impress on young men that they are not entitled to sexual gratification from other people. There could be a reiteration that crimes of these natures will be punished severely to the full extent of the law. The media could be approached to prevent the platforming of what SHOULD BE CALLED extremists, terrorists and more. No name, no notoriety. Crimes against women and LGBT+ people (and, obviously, the women in the community especially), should be prioritised as the stats continue to rise- with a focus on those who do experience anything being supported properly (this, in my experience, does not happen and leads to worse for those who have already suffered enough). Creating the narrative that we are responsible for other’s behaviour merely by showing skin or being open about our gender or sexuality is a complete dereliction of duty.

Earlier this year when news broke of an Iranian gay man, murdered before he could flee, the article stated that there was “worldwide condemnation”- and yet there was also a disquietingly loud smattering of those stating “why would he come out? would you really wave your sexuality around like that?” As though the crime of existing and being gay should be met with such swift and horrific punishment.

See source at top: Rest in peace Alireza

And then in Spain, a man was beaten to death by a homophobic crowd- again, condemnation, shock, outrage- nothing.

Now it’s common to, on the daily, open up the news apps to a small headline about another gay man, lesbian, trans person, couple, enby person, being beaten, bashed, robbed, chased, sexually assaulted. These crimes are horrific wherever they occur but are getting closer and closer to home, and it’s not the responsibility of those who may suffer from these crimes to take precautionary measures- it is for those who would commit the crimes to be discouraged through either the simple expedient of education or through fear of repercussion.

Start repairing trust in a community that has historic bad blood

Even I, as an extremely tepid and boring human, have had several very negative interactions with the police- twice related to my sexuality, twice not. But my trans friends, and several of my cis lesbian, gay and bi friends have had very negative interactions with the police based on their sexuality and hate crimes. I haven’t even bothered to report some of the things that have been done or said to me on account of my own sexuality- partly because I can manage, and partly because I know that often nothing comes of it.

Faith in an organisation that’s previously categorically failed to help the LGBT+ community and women is unsurprisingly worn thin- but the police never work to make reparations for communities they have historically (and arguably presently) let down. The right wing press demonised the police’s attempt to create vehicles with the pride inclusive flag, writing that the police should focus on “real” crimes.

Source: https://www.lbc.co.uk/news/police-hate-crime-cars-rainbow/

The irony of this move is, it’s yet another cishet created move for “inclusion” that misses the mark but allows the community to suffer the repercussions. We do-not-care about flags on police cars. We care about a competent police force who will listen to and action our issues. We care about resolution to any crimes committed against us, and we care about the betterment of the society in which we live which currently seems to be slowly turning against us in a frightening way.

Protest has always been a key tenet of the LGBT+ community as we’ve fought for our rights to be who we are without judgement or, ironically, fear. But that right has been taken, and it’s a right that must be enshrined- yet has been desecrated by a flippant government seeking to avoid retribution for it’s actions. This move was, to our eyes, fostered by a police force desperate to be able to prevent public speech in dissent of it’s behaviours and so lends another unneeded nail to the coffin of LGBT+ trust in the force.

Societal change

Cis men won’t like the idea that society fails too many of them in the simple area of being taught that they cannot touch what people do not consent to- that they cannot (I have literally witnessed this behaviour and screamed at the individual) take pictures of girls in workout clothes at the bus stop at the bottom of Briggate in Leeds, that they should not open conversations with pictures of their genitals. Whatever it is that is not impressed upon them in their youths and as they grow must be implemented if we hope to make a society that allows people to feel safe. I as a cis man am regularly dumbfounded by people assuming I’m happy to receive unprompted pictures of their naked bodies. And the RAGE! The rage that is directed at you when you aren’t interested- as if looking at their bodies when I didn’t want to was some sort of secret reward. As if being told that I make them horny when I didn’t want to know is some elusive prize they want to award me. The depersonalisation of the other is a huge, foreboding problem with far too many men- some think their unprompted sexualisation is wanted or a gift we ask for just by existing in the same space as them.

Though the article is old, I doubt the systemic belief has changed much with no campaign to do so:

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/dec/06/quarter-of-adults-think-marital-sex-without-consent-is-not-uk-survey-finds

Others don’t care if their obscenities are received well, they simply want to get off to knowing that others are forced to see it. It’s flashing for the 21st century and the police should be impressing upon people that they can and will access records of conversations, and that if someone sends pictures like that unsolicited and without agreement, it merits punishment.

Before the “it’s not all men” crowd leap in, yes women should be subject to the same scrutiny- and yet I noticed an odd phenomenon when discussing this topic with straight cis men before- when I told them how annoying it is to be subject to something of an occasional deluge of pictures of penises, they told me they would love to receive pictures of vaginas randomly. It’s this disconnect in mindset I don’t understand and would like to.

These are the same people who, when I explained that I have been sexually assaulted by a partner who woke me up holding me down, taking off my underwear and taking advantage of me when I was exhausted and unable to consent, and more than once did say “no”, “stop” or “get off”, was met with either silence or indifference, told me that they would “love” to get woken up by sex.

You didn’t misread that. On three occasions I’ve disclosed to straight cis men (and two gay cis men…) that I was painfully sexually assaulted and their response is that they would want that to happen to them. Either their lack of imagination when it comes to consent is terrifying or a worrying proportion of men have distorted opinions when it comes to what sex is and should be. I’ve also had -specifically- several cis straight men tell me that they imagine it’s “normal” that eventually sex slows down and that situation occurs. And when people ask me why I, to this day, have trouble trusting men, it’s because of these statements and the actions of the person who did it to me.

Society needs to stop procrastinating at the peril of people who suffer these heinous crimes- sexual and simple violence- and come to an understanding of causality and change. Lives would be saved.

The UK media must be stopped

The anti LGBT+ sentiment has always boiled along in the background, my entire life. I remember disparaging articles in the daily mail when I was in my formative teen years, that gave people I cared greatly for the energy to rail against my sexuality as though I chose to make their lives more difficult by dint of who I find attractive. We haven’t yet reached the resurgence of openly and blatantly homophobic headlines like these compiled by Tony Reeves:

Disgraceful, isn’t it! And yet are we really- really- so far from this rhetoric?

Source: https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/lesbians-are-being-erased-by-transgender-activists p.s JulieBindel is an anti trans bigot – don’t give her the click

Last year’s “poofters” and “d*kes” are this year’s “trans Taliban”, activists seeking to erase women, erase lesbians, roll back freedoms and rights, imperil people- and a disturbing portion of the community allows themselves to foster and promote these beliefs by buying into and actively promoting them. Nobody should go through what the LGBT+ activists did, and yet they did, so to perpetuate such scorn upon yet another community is a travesty of the highest proportion.

More cis people writing hateful books about trans people- demonising them, accusing them of propagating trans ideology and more. Joyce didn’t even interview a trans person for her book, focusing instead on burrowing deep in the echo chamber of the internet’s anti trans activists. Shrier’s book suggests that being trans is a craze rather than a divergence from being cis, and that the increase in people coming out as trans was a more accepting society and a deeper understanding of the nonexistence of the gender binary.

At the same time, we see regular reports of anti LGBT+ preachers extolling their dangerous platitudes about how we’re trying to de-sanctify the world, gay up Jesus, whatever else these curmudgeonly hacks want to push into their echo chamber. We’re asked or told to debate our right to be, to live, to love, to access healthcare- we’re forced endlessly to defend ourselves against accusations of trying to woo children into some imagined community initiation scheme, talked about, grumbled about and loosely tolerated until the first time a lesbian tells someone to shut up and then suddenly – SEE, WHAT HAPPENED TO THE TOLERANT AND LOVING LGBT?

When all is said and done, the police will continue to mop up hate crime rather than look at ways to tackle it systemically and the problem will worsen, the media will continue to half heartedly demonise us for things out of our control, and make the worst of us the examples of the rest of us and until many of us have paid the price of their lassitude, the problems will continue.
I’d urge the police to consider taking some actual action, doing some actual groundwork with the government to stem the tide of hatred leaking through every brick in the wall that holds us safe against those who would wish us harm. Is that too much to ask? Or do you need to clean my blood off the pavement to realise, too late, that I told you this was coming?

Ofcom have sold out the LGBTQIA

By Daviemoo

Either infiltrated by trans exclusive radical feminists or simply browbeaten into doing so, Ofcom today released a statement confirming that they would be leaving the stonewall diversity champions scheme. Despite the statement promising their continuing commitment to diversity, the suggestion and implication that Stonewall mean to do anything but protect and enshrine the inclusion of L G B T Q I and A rights at any affiliated institutions is blatant misinformation, parroted hot from the presses of the gender critical who so love to bombard social media from behind anonymous profiles. So- Et Tu, Ofcom? And what does this mean next?

Ofcom’s role is to regulate media in the UK, ensuring that fair, equal and proportionate representation is always at the forefront of media production. As you may be able to tell from the rise of right wing populist media in the UK, Ofcom are questionable at best at this role. Even the BBC’s horrendous oversight of the Peter Stefanovic “Debunking Boris Johnson’s Lies” video lends credence to the fact that Ofcom is doing a poor job of regulating anything these days. But nothing shows Ofcom’s increasing determination to declare obsolescence than leaving the diversity champions scheme that has beenn a corner of any business in the UK who wishes to declare it’s commitment to ensuring that members of the LGBTQIA have fair representation in the workplace- both as employees, and as protected members of a minority status.

Looking historically at stonewall’s achievements, along with their ongoing commitment to equality for everyone under the banner of LGBTQIA- from significantly lending a hand to shaping the equality act to pushing the repeal of the highly damaging Section 28, legislation which even significantly affected childhoods like my own at a time when queer issues were not spoken about in school, it’s clear that their commitment to equality is the bone of contention that has meant their exclusion from an ostensibly vital organisation.

From the outside, what does leaving a scheme like this look like?
The statement provided by Ofcom was meant to reassure that they are committed to diversity and feel they do not need Stonewall to do so- an odd statement, as Stonewall is the go to for any guidance around LGBTQIA representation in the UK. But the second part of their statement, implying that Stonewall’s efficacy has come under scrutiny is viewed through the clouded lens of bigotry so often employed by the gender critical crowd who seem determined to suffuse society with their hatred.

Stonewall’s determination to protect trans people from hatred has been inspiring and has provided many a cis ally – myself included- with hope that organisations will not fall to the mindless hate that gender critical groups are foisting on the public.

As more frighteningly prominent figures come out as radicalised in favour of stripping back trans rights and protections, the situation in the UK looks bleak for trans individuals and an indifferent government- wholesale- does not help. Lisa Townsend, Police and Crime Commissioner has released an article decrying “trans ideology” in, predictably, the Daily Mail. Quotes in the article follow the usual line, for example: “Residents “scared of female-only spaces filling with women with male genitalia”, as though accepting the tiny proportion of trans women in the UK will suddenly lead to an explosion of trans women.

It’s not surprising to see- if you look at Ms Townsend’s twitter follows, you’ll find the Conservative party, GB news, and account after account who are anti trans- for example, as I scroll now:

Anyone even mildly familiar with the relentless tide of transphobia which continues to wash across the UK will know names like Maya Forstater, we are fair cop, Debbie Hayton, Marrion Millar… all old hat names when it comes to the anti trans extremists. Curious that a police commissioner is so fervently following this group. One cannot help but feel that her role may be compromised as to treating trans victims with any decency if she is so convinced of the radical (self professed, using their own phraseology) feminists so opposed to trans equality.

Equally, worrying news regarding anti-trans campaigners breaking the news of ofcom’s departure from the scheme has made rounds on social media and if the alleged information is true, lends credence to the theme that Ofcom withdrawing is not to “avoid bias”- it is to endorse it. If anti trans campaigners working at or with Ofcom knew ahead of the statement’s release it suggests that they are operating from within to ensure this move was undertaken- and how is this not the very bias Ofcom supposedly works to prevent?

As an ally, I worry about what the next decade will look like for trans rights. As this group gains steam, I’ve no doubt that lives will be threatened. Trans people already face disproportionately high suicidal ideations, domestic violence, hate crime, sexual assault and murder and in a society emboldened to foster ignorant beliefs like gender criticality, how will this change and shape how trans people can live?

I’d urge gender critical nonsense imbibers to sit back and actually listen to trans people and what they want and need. Blaming someone for the body they have is at best callous, at worst pointlessly cruel. And acting like anyone standing in support of trans people is a dangerous misogynist is a laughable idea, comparable to those who said supporters of the LGBT community in the 70’s and 80’s were paedophile enablers.

To cease relations with Stonewall is a tacit admission that your organisation will no longer foster the equality of trans people- and this is exactly how it reads to anyone involved. Ofcom may be the first of several organisations to make this misstep and I simply look forward to whatever necessary changes need to take place in society for the ignorant in this fractured society to reflect on their behaviour and simply become better.

The irony is that every facet of every community contains an element of dangerous and depraved individuals. But to constantly seek out and platform those unscrupulous amongst the trans community is incredibly disingenuous. Often the anti trans community will fervently seek out the less scrupulous amongst the trans or trans supportive community and display them like zoo animals.

Where though, is the platform for trans women who excel at being simple members of society? Where is the threat from a trans woman walking down the street to her job? Or the trans man who serves you at the bar, helps his neighbour with shopping and gives to charity? To tar all trans people with the brush of dangerous, deluded etc is to engage in the very thoughtless bigotry that Stonewall stands against- and society at large is actively beginning to foster holding the view that all trans people are anything other than people who are trans.

Ofcom’s role is to provide balance to UK media production, and to move away from a body that’s entire reason for existence is an aggressive commitment to equality should be a worrying sound for any and all who notice- so spread the word, complain to Ofcom about their foolish and misguided step away from progression. Or admit that you are ambivalent towards equality for an already horrifically treated group in society.