The Difficulty of Gender Issues 323


It should go without saying that an important part of the approach to this debate should be not to hate anybody, on any side of the argument. Looking through the comments below I am very surprised that several people seem unable to do this.

I write as somebody who has spent virtually his whole life doing things other than think deeply about the rights of transgender people. The subject has however inserted itself centrally into Scottish political debate and particularly preoccupies sections of the leadership of the Independence movement. With the banning of the twitter account of Wings Over Scotland for what are judged by Twitter to be “transphobic” tweets, and the same day publication of the new Gender Recognition Reform Bill by the Scottish Government – and the coincidence of those two happenings worries me – I need to set down rather more coherent thoughts on the subject than I have previously.

To start from first principles, I believe that people should be treated as they wish to be treated. If somebody wishes to be treated as female I will treat them as female. That seems to me good manners. It seems the height of bad manners to do otherwise. If I meet someone who tells me they are a woman, I would not dream of querying them or demanding evidence. I would treat them as female. In my life so far, that is how I have always in practice dealt with people I have met whom I suspected might be transgender or transvestite. I treat them as the gender they present themselves as. (I do not care in the slightest for the latest fashion in politically correct jargon for these things). The same also obviously applies to people who wish to be treated as male.

I therefore support the principle of self-declaration that appears to be the basis of the Scottish government’s new bill. People should be what they wish to be, not what a doctor or psychiatrist tells them they are. Please note possession of genitalia does not factor in my thinking at all, in normal social situations.

We then come to the difficult bits. It appears to me plainly daft for a man simply to be able to declare themselves a woman and then to compete in elite sport in women only events. Men have natural competitive advantages from the effects on physique of testosterone. That is simply true, although I do find it rather ironic that feminists are now so insistent upon the fact, as it is precisely to adopt the arguments of Bobby Riggs against those of Billie Jean King. In non-elite, mixed ability sport – which is 99% of all sport that actually happens – I can see no reason why people cannot participate as the gender of their choice, and indeed I do not know why non-elite sport is gender specific at all. I am yet to play the woman who cannot beat me at squash. I suspect our cat could beat me at squash.

The attitudes towards these things change over time. When I went to primary school we had a segregated playground. There are still plenty of old Victorian schools around Edinburgh where the marking for boys’ and girls’ entrances survive in the brickwork. Though while talking of schools, I would add that I think gender re- assignment of children under 16 should almost never be allowed, as they are over-susceptible to adult influence.

Having lived so much of my life abroad, I have never quite understood the British obsession with gender segregated toilets anyway.

When it comes to prison, I have no doubt that Chelsea Manning should be in a female prison and treated as a female. Equally, there was a case highlighted on Wings over Scotland some months ago of a man convicted of sexual offences who had obtained admittance to a women’s prison after claiming female gender, who proceeded to carry out sexual assaults there. Plainly a convicted male sexual assailant ought not to be put in a women’s prison, even if they now claim gender re-identity.

So I quite accept that the right of self-declaration cannot be absolute and there are situations – highly unusual situations like prisons for violent offenders – where authorities should decide on its applicability in gender segregated areas. There are two things to say here. The first is that the entire debate so far elevates dogma on both sides above commonsense. The second is that to make law from extreme examples is foolish. We don’t make building codes for the general population on the basis of specifying the banning of the methods of Fred and Rosemary West.

Personally, I quite accept the view that a woman who arrives at a beauty salon ought to be able to refuse to have her intimate parts waxed by somebody she does not feel comfortable is the same sex as her, without being accused of “hate crime”. Others might not object at all and trans people ought not to be banned from working in beauty salons. These problems seem to me best solved by societal interaction and minimal intrusion of the state.

I realise that both sides of a currently heated debate will find my folksy take on this, based on empathy and tolerance not on rigid application of first principles, to be entirely wrong. Some will object to my lack of the latest PC jargon. One side will insist that being male or female is a simple physical thing and choice does not come into it. Some argue that men are violent, dangerous creatures from whom women need loads of safe spaces into which they can securely retreat, without fear of infiltration by “pretend women”. Others argue that identity is an entirely personal matter that nobody else can decide, and that the law should compel society to accept self-declared identity in every circumstance, and to do otherwise is a hate crime.

My own view is that, irrespective of whether gender is a binary divide, the question of how we treat trans people ought not to be a binary divide. It is a question of complex social interactions at a time of changing mores, and different factors are crucial in different situations. The safety of women is a crucial factor in the case of the male sex offender declaring themselves into a women’s prison. But the safety of women is not in imminent danger in the large majority of social interactions. The large majority of people, including the large majority of trans people, are decent and kind. Let us order relations on that basis, with safeguards in place for the unusual.

For what it is worth, in general the Scottish Government’s proposals do not seem to me a bad stab at these difficult questions. Self declaration should be the basic rule, and then there should be specified rules to cover unusual situations where problems might arise from aberrant behaviour, which may be exhibited by either party.

Finally, less than one per cent of the population have prosthetic limbs. If I were writing about the subject I would not feel the need to refer to everyone who does not have a prosthetic limb as “organics” or some such antonym. The idea we have to refer to everyone who is not trans as cis deserves to be ridiculed. The truly pathetic intellectual level of what passes for academic or expert led debate on these questions is a matter of some concern. I blame deconstructionism as the root of much trivial thought.

This whole issue is one of those subjects where I am aware that I need to duck for cover after writing.

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323 thoughts on “The Difficulty of Gender Issues

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  • Dan B,

    Don’t know why you would have to “duck for cover” , I’d suggest anyone who doesn’t find your writing interesting and thought provoking shouldn’t be here.
    Although “the customer is always right” is a rather trite saying, the customer is paying for a service and if the provider wants to benefit from that they should do what they can, within reason, to accommodate their wishes.
    Equally, if the service provider finds the customer’s requirements unreasonable, then they should be able to refuse service at their discretion, without fear of litigation.
    “Good manners” , or my preference – courtesy and empathy – are of course desirable.
    The patient who has an irrational dislike of medical staff based on gender or race alone, with no knowledge of their professional competence, is to be pitied and sent to the back of the queue.
    However, I reserve the right to choose who I interact with based on prior experience, whether in that situation or in a supermarket where I know that one till operator has a couldn’t care less, too much trouble attitude, but another has a helpful , considerate outlook.
    I couldn’t care less about what any individual “identifies” their self as, I do not demand that I be accepted and treated with deference regardless of my behaviour.
    I have no knowledge of the law in Scotland , but the CPS in England summarises “hate crime ” thus :
    “When someone is hostile to another person because of their :
    Disability , Nationality , Race , Religion , Sexual orientation , or Transgender identity
    and they show their hostility by :
    Intimidation
    Harassment
    Damaging property
    Violence
    it is hate crime .
    https://www.cps.gov.uk/hate-crime

    What is now being proposed by the Prime Minister and Attorney General in Australia is chilling , it could have been written by Hitler , and is perhaps the result of the demands of bigoted dogmatic “christians” .
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/14/religious-discrimination-bill-what-will-australians-be-allowed-to-say-and-do-if-it-passes

  • Bilko

    Let me firstly say that I agree with everything Craig has written and agree that it is only good manners not to unnecessarily challenge people’s identity. What concerns me however is the fact that gender dysphoria is a psychiatric illness, if I’m not mistaken. The sufferer feels disconnected from their body, but like other psychiatric illnesses their subjective experience is at odds with objective reality. There are many other psychiatric illnesses where sufferers have issues with their bodies that are at odds with reality, e.g. Xenomelia, aka alien limb syndrome. However, gender dysphoria seems to be a rare case where the treatment for this psychiatric illness is to indulge and encourage the sufferer’s subjective beliefs. I’ve no major problem with this myself, as if the treatment reduces anxiety and stress then it has done its job. However, this doesn’t mean that the rest of society should be forced to join in with these mistaken beliefs, which is where most of the kick-back against trans-sexual identities currently comes from. Anyone who has gender dysphoria has my sympathy, because identity is central to our being, and having that internal conflict, especially as a child/teenager must be extremely distressing. I just wonder if telling such a person “yes, everything you feel about yourself is unquestionably right” is good for society in the long term.

      • Twirlip

        Oh dear, oh dear, where to begin … perhaps by asking you if you have actually read anything by R. D. Laing? He was a difficult man, he left a destructive legacy (I had extensive personal experience of it, enough to fill several books, if only I could write them), his writing was often pretentious, he offered no answers, except in the form of some social experiments that I believe mostly ended badly (and by the time I came into contact with them, had degenerated into a cauldron of abuse), his own son despised him (I think), and he ended up drunk and depressed. But if you are judging him by what others have written about him (including this!), then ask yourself whether Jeremy Corbyn should be judged by what others have written about him. Laing’s writings get closer to the heart of the troubling and mysterious phenomenon of “mental illness” than anyone else’s, in my opinion. Try The Divided Self first.

        (Incidentally, he once described himself as a “male lesbian”. I forget where. Perhaps he was joking? I didn’t get that impression.)

          • Twirlip

            I know the Woody Allen joke, and I have often independently made the same joke myself. I imagine it is a thought that has occurred independently to a great many biological males of uncertain gender with some sexual interest in women. My point, though, was that I didn’t have the impression that Laing was only joking. I could easily be wrong, of course.

            (Oh damn, I’m still taking part in this thread! I must be a masochist.) 🙂

          • Twirlip

            I beg your pardon. I don’t know what I was thinking. (I was feeling very pissed off with this forum, and was just about to apologise for having forgotten carrie’s helpful post, and leave this thread for ever, but then I stumbled onto this post by mistake, and answered in haste.)

            I can’t actually recall the Woody Allen joke at all! All of my Woody Allen books are packed away, and it’s ages since I watched any of his films. I’ve just searched the Internet to aid my failing memory, and I can’t find it there either.

            This must prove beyond doubt that I am anti-Semitic. 🙂

    • Ian Robert Stevenson

      Bilko, I think you are mistaken in calling it a psychiatric illness, implying it is a ‘mistaken belief’. The American psychiatric Association has a diagnostic and statistical manual and list lots of ‘disorders” In the US most medicine is paid for by insurance and they won’t pay out for anything psychological not in the DSM. The definitions have changed over time. One being homosexuality. As you may appreciate human cultures vary in their views and these views can change over time.
      The ‘condition’ or experience is very real to the person concerned, which does not mean it should be just accepted. There has been a lot of research on both sides of the Atlantic by psychiatrists, psychologists, anthropologists, doctors. psychotherapists (actually listening to people and not telling them ) and the conclusion is that it is a real condition part of the variation of being human. It is a natural variation.
      I have family experience of this and the person concerned did have surgical intervention after long discussion and is much happier.
      This is the best way to deal with it, supportive discussion and support and consideration of all the possible reasons for the feelings-as in therapy.
      I was a Samaritan for some years in the 1980s and another volunteer had changed from male to female in the late 60s /early 70s (not a modern fad ) . She never looked a convincing male but she was very good on the phone and could understand loneliness and rejection and being torn in two. I leant that the content of one’s character ) to quote Martin Luther King) is more important than the arrangement of organs.

  • Helena

    I find most of what you wrote very reasonable, but I disagree strongly on one point: “I think gender re- assignment of children under 16 should almost never be allowed, as they are over-susceptible to adult influence.”
    Yes, It is a concern. But I believe also preteens and teenagers probably need the possibility of gender reassignement the most. In that vulnerable age, not only being forced to present as a different gender that they feel to be can cause a lot of anxiety and set a foundation for future psychological problems, but most importantly, they need the hormonal therapy before puberty to stop their body from becoming more like the gender they don’t identify with, before irrevocable changes happen that make the transition far more difficult in the future.
    Imagine for a moment having to live with the absolute horror that you would feel if you were 13-ish years old and you had to just observe as your body slowly turns into the opposite of the gender that you feel to be.
    From what I read from the parents of the transgender children, the kids knew very early on which gender they are, even if the parents strongly fought the idea in the beginning. And it helped lot of the kids immensely to start the treatment early as it stopped those unwanted changes in their bodies that scared and depressed them so much.
    In the light of this information, I find it cruel to deny the the hormonal therapy and the possibility to express as their gender to young kids.

    • John Goss

      I have a great nephew now in a same sex relationship. I was speaking to his grandmother last night and she mentioned that he had long taken an interest in same sex by some of the content he looked at on websites as a youth. I recall that during my apprenticeship there were times when I looked on certain older men as being attractive but it soon passed. I don’t know where it came from. I suspect it was admiration for those who seemed to have everything going their way, but this, assuming others go through that phase (perhaps young women as well), it is a period that might make a young man (or woman) vulnerable to predatory advances from those who have been round the block.

      A case comes to mind covered by John E Malmstad and Nikolai Bogomolov in “Mikhail Kuzmin a life in art”. This is a meticulously researched and superbly written book which I bought as background material for a novel I am writing. Kuzmin was openly gay, a great writer who was dubbed “Russia’s Oscar WIlde”. Vsevelod Gavrilovich Knyazaev was a young hussar who was not sure of his sexual identity and had affairs with both Kuzmin and actress Olga Glebova-Sudeikina who was married to the painter Sergey Sudeikin. Caught at the crossroads of identity Knyazaev shot himself after Sudeikina ended the affair. He was 21 or 22. Knyazaev’s mother blamed Sudeikina and Sudeikina’s friend, the poet, Anna Akhmatova, pointed the finger at Kuzmin for his perceived lack of conscience and unpunished licentiousness.

      • Helena

        I get what you are saying, a lot of teenagers go through a period of sexual confusion. But sexual orientation and gender identity are two vastly different and unrelated things.
        And I don’t propose a completely unsupervised gender reassignment of children, but I believe that with a proper and unprejudiced evaluation from a specialised psychologist it would be good for transgender kids to be able to transition before puberty.

        • John Goss

          Before puberty is far too early for any child to commit to anything. It really can confuse a child and there are enough confusing things for them to get their heads round. Psychologists and psychiatrists do not necessarily know how a child will develop, Pushing a child in any direction is the wishes of an adult being imposed on that child. Kids want to be all sorts of things before they eventually determine their individual futures – which are all different. Some boys play with dolls, some girls climb trees, but to push them into either of these directions is playing with development and I agree that Craig is right on this, which as you have stated you do not. And hormonal therapy! At that age? You will end up with the monsters of your own creation who never had a say in their own development. Hormone treatment can be dangerous even for adults. A partner of mine had hormonal treatment (oestrogen) because osteoporosis ran in the female side of the family even knowing there were risks of cancer. She developed cancer, had a mastectomy, and still died. How could you wish anything like that on a child just because of your beliefs in transition?

          • Tatyana

            I had to go through hormone therapy last year and I confirm it is something you’d never advise for a child.
            Even they very small doses, but it made me feel completely sick. Nausea, uncontrollable appetite, high blood pressure, dizzy head, veeery slooooowwww thinking, lack of concentration, bad memory, overwhelming feeling of anxiety, sudden tears – as if I were teenager and pregnant woman both in one.
            I would not advise this for any child, unless it’s really a question of ‘live or dead’.
            Anyway, I believe that the decision must be made by specialists, as Helena says.

          • Andyoldlabour

            Tatyana

            Thanks for that post Tatanya, because it really shows the dangers in prescribing hormone therapy to young children. If the Tavistock centre, Mermaids and Stonewall had their way, then puberty blocking medication would be handed out like Smarties to anyone who demanded them.

    • Giyane

      Helena

      There are probably many boys who lived in same sex communities without parents who felt love for the only thing available at the time , other males. Was that not a total denial of my heterosexuality. I’m glad I had an uncle who spent the war organising brothels for troops abroad who told me that homosexisls should be horse-whipped. Nothing like a bit of positive adult affirmation when you are a child.

      By your reasoning you would disaffirm boys of the sexuality into which they are born. Bonkers. But quite useful for the feminist cause to tie up men in doubts about themselves.

  • Chrissy

    Craig, this is muddled thinking at best. I didn’t think you were that confused about males and females. I identify as an owl so I guess anyone who disagrees with me is guilty of a hate crime?? This transgender issue indicates a mental health crisis or simply an attempt by various quarters to reduce our social fabric yet further down the gutter.

        • N_

          Most people follow the crowd in this epoch of mass psychology, @JRTomlin, and many among them, including those who think they’re “educated”, even deign to come up with “reasons”, as if they arrived at their “view” through rational thought. That’s how much persuasion works – make the mug think they thought of the idea for themselves.

          Incidentally, I doubt the truth of your premise regarding how “gay” people were regarded in the past (the identity of “gay” isn’t even 100 years old, by the way – did you think it was older?); you can’t prove a proposition merely by asserting an analogy; and I wasn’t arguing that something was good because most people thought it. Your contribution would seem most suitable as a “tweet”.

        • Tatyana

          Most people? As long as I know gay people are well known fenomenon since history begins. Only ultra-you-name-it groups think that gay people must be executed.
          Most people’s opinion varies from interest to indifference and to disgust, but rarely they give it even a second thought.
          Until adult people do something on mutual consent and don’t try to creep into my bed without invitation, so who cares? It’s their business.

        • Mary

          Or persecuted and mistreated by the state like Alan Turing –

          ‘In spite his achievements, in 1952 he was prosecuted for homosexuality, which was then illegal.

          To avoid prison, Turing agreed to receive injections of oestrogen for a year, which was intended to reduce his libido in a process known as chemical castration.

          He subsequently died of cyanide poisoning aged 41 – an inquest recorded a verdict of suicide, although his mother and others maintained his death was accidental.’

          Torygraph

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Turing_Memorial
          and there’s a bronze statue of him on the plaza in front of the University of Surrey in Guildford, his home town and where he was born and brought up.

    • Andyoldlabour

      Chrissy

      You are correct, there are clear differnces between males and females, differences enshrined in biology. Gender is another thing entirely and is now being used to take rights away from women.

  • N_

    To start from first principles, I believe that people should be treated as they wish to be treated. If somebody wishes to be treated as female I will treat them as female. That seems to me good manners.

    It amounts to denying the existence of society.

    Miaou! Miaou! Can I have a saucer of milk.

    • jake

      Well, of course you can have have a saucer of milk. Would you prefer the milk from a lactating male, or a lactating female?

  • J R Tomlin

    No, people who are transgender were NEVER called transvestites. The two things are totally different and have nothing to do with each other. While I am sure this article is well meant, Craig, that alone shows a degree of prejudice, probably based on ignorance. But if you are going to do an article, it would be a good idea not to base your article on ignorance of the issue.

    • N_

      If a man (that is, an adult human being whose every cell apart from his sperm cells contain an XY pair of chromosomes) puts on women’s clothing and wants everyone to call him “she”, I call him a transvestite. If the same person really believes he is female, as of course some such individuals do – we live in sick times – then I believe an appropriate term is considered to be “transsexual”. When you say two qualities are totally different and have nothing to do with each other, why don’t you define what you mean by them if you wish to be taken seriously, rather than calling other people “ignorant” of what you call “the issue”?

      Another question for you is how would you know if you lived in sick times?

      • N_

        Perhaps those of us who oppose the view of “gender identity” that has officially been dominant in 20 or so western or western-influenced countries for up to 20 years aren’t such a bunch of “string ’em up” thickos as you seem to believe, @JRTomlin.

    • Twirlip

      On the contrary, the article does not come across as either prejudiced or ignorant. Please take that from me – unless you are TG yourself, and can claim to know better then me, on the basis of your own experience.

      I use “TG” (an older term, short for “transgendered”), or “trans” (a newer term, with which I am less comfortable, partly because its meaning has been systematically distorted, almost into complete nonsense) as umbrella terms for the whole range or spectrum of conditions that we are talking about.

      Of course one can quibble about the exact meanings of terms. I’m very good at quibbling! Quibbling about the exact meanings of terms was, and for all I know it still is, a favourite occupation on TG/trans forums. But I can see no cause for you to lecture Craig about it.

      The terms are not as set in stone as you seem to imagine.

      I’m probably sounding quite dogmatic myself! It’s because of the pressure of (apparently – like “the only gay in the village”) being the only one here who is in a position to discuss this topic on the basis of his or her own experience, even though I’m painfully aware that my experience is very odd, even for a TG person (of any stripe), and it cannot be taken as representative.

      Sorry if I’ve offended.

      • N_

        the only one here who is in a position to discuss this topic on the basis of his or her own experience

        Some who are neither transsexuals nor transvestites have encountered one or more people who are, and most readers of this thread have probably read about transsexuals and transvestites, had to fill in forms that ask stupid questions instead of “M/F?”, etc. Are meeting other human beings and reading what they have written not “experiences”? Meanwhile, and more importantly, everyone is familiar from their own experiences with the notions of male and female and therefore has a good basis on which to opine on the matter of how society should treat those who wear the clothes of, or who wish to adopt, the other “gender”.

        • Twirlip

          Are you pretending not to understand the perfectly clear meaning of what I wrote, or do you really not understand? Is this a game for you, or what? Jeez!

          I have posted 14 times in this thread. I have put real thought and effort and care into what I have written. I have (reluctantly) been at it most of the day, when I have many other quite important things to do (important to me, I mean), and I have had very little sleep. I have received two and a half responses: two of them patronising and dismissive, and the half-response callous and downright insulting. In all conscience, I don’t think I have spoken out of turn. This is a subject that concerns me deeply, and of which I have a lifetime’s knowledge and experience. I don’t think the complete lack of any respectful response says something about me personally – even though I am temperamentally inclined to harsh self-criticism. I think it must say something about people preferring to think of certain groups of people en masse, as generalised abstract others.

          I have not been overly personal, and in particular I have not been overly confessional. I could easily be addressed in a respectful and ordinary way. I have not gone out my way to make my part of the discussion difficult or uncomfortable. There has been no need to distance me, or deliberately misunderstand me.

          In a word, I have been addressed not as “you”, but as “one of them”.

          I really, really, really shouldn’t have bothered to take part; and I probably won’t again, at least not in a discussion here of any subject that concerns me as personally as this does. What a waste of time and effort.

          • Hatuey

            “I have posted 14 times in this thread. I have put real thought and effort and care into what I have written. I have (reluctantly) been at it most of the day, when I have many other quite important things to do (important to me, I mean), and I have had very little sleep”

            It’s almost as if this is the only thing you really care about. It’s more important to you than the rights of Palestinians, Assange, the plight of the poor, corruption, and all the other harrowing subjects we discuss on here…

            Everybody else on this forum has a sexuality too (even N_), yet they somehow manage to care for issues that don’t directly concern themselves, bigger issues that involve others, etc.

          • Ian

            Twirlip, your thoughtful comments and willingness to engage with people are appreciated. Makes a change. Don’t be put off by the thread police who consider it is here for their benefit and to ceaselessly platform their own repetitive views, which are not subject to debate or change.

    • craig Post author

      J Tomlin

      Apologies I have written an ambiguous sentence. The or is meant to indicate that they are two separate things as you say, not that it is an alternative term for the same thing. The what we used to call simply means I don’t know what transvestites are called nowadays.

      • SA

        Craig
        It is probably best looked at as a spectrum of which cross dressing is at one end and complete medical and surgical transitioning is the other end:
        “The gender conflict affects people in different ways. It can change the way a person wants to express their gender and can influence behavior, dress and self-image. Some people may cross-dress, some may want to socially transition, others may want to medically transition with sex-change surgery and/or hormone treatment. Socially transitioning primarily involves transitioning into the affirmed gender’s pronouns and bathrooms.“
        https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/gender-dysphoria/what-is-gender-dysphoria

        • Jimmeh

          “It is probably best looked at as a spectrum of which cross dressing is at one end and complete medical and surgical transitioning is the other end:”

          I accept that “transvestite” is a spectrum, ranging from a certain type of burlesque performer to a response to a person’s view of their own identity. But the clue is in the word: “vest-” is to do with clothing. It’s got nothing to do with medical operations.

          I hate it when terms get redefined without respecting basic etymology.

  • Athanasius

    Craig, you have in the past stated you thought people who were not of the left were lacking in intelligence. Well, what goes around, comes around. In the end, the left always ends up eating itself and that’s what’s happening here. A century ago, the left set out to systematically either control or destroy every social, cultural and civilizational pillar of the west. Churches, schools, professions, all of them. The logic was, if you smash it all to atoms, you can reassemble the atoms any way you choose. Trans is the proverbial bridge too far. People just won’t swallow it. Words simply HAVE to mean something and people just won’t accept that men are women (and it’s nearly ALWAYS men wanting to be women). It’s the rock the whole left is going to perish on. Pass the popcorn.

    • fedup

      Left? Memes galore, ranting on: left this and left that, what left? The current fascio have moved so far to the right, yet the deluded still harp on about left? What do you want Hitler with his little tash, before you concede there is no more left, or was he a lefty too?

      • Athanasius

        Yes, he was a leftie, but that’s not relevant here. I’m saying that when the socialists of France, Britain and Germany fought for their respective countries in 1914 instead of refusing arms and ushering in the communist utopia, as all communist theory had predicted, the theorists realized the culture was too strong and had to be destroyed before we could all advance into the sunlit uplands of the leftist paradise. Didn’t occur to them that if the predictions of the theory didn’t come true, then the theory was wrong. The subsequent assault upon western culture is the reason you don’t know your neighbours’ names and you’re paying taxes to fund social services so other people can be nice on your behalf.

    • George McI

      “A century ago, the left set out to systematically either control or destroy every social, cultural and civilizational pillar of the west.”

      Ironically it was ‘the left’ that saved capitalism. By opposing the worst injustices and campaigning against the most extreme exploitation, the left managed to gain rights and protections that stopped capitalism from collapsing and even prompted it to flourish. Had there been no such opposition to the extremes of capitalism, the whole system would have eaten itself. It is capitalism that has been the great destroyer of tradition, the great leveller of humanity, the great seculariser, the constant revolution in technology. What we are seeing now is once again the emergence of capitalism’s push towards self-destruction.

    • nevermind

      No, Athanasius, they are swallowing plasticizers and oestrogen mimicking chemicals the pharmaceutical companies dont want to talk about.
      For us to assume that our genome is safe from chemical influences should have a look at what targeted GM traits are transferred, sometimes from totally unrelated species.
      We are guinea pigs.
      Gender disphoria is a rising sociatal development, it takes two years of councelling before any assignment for any physical changes take place.
      I would like to thank Craig for visiting my late motherinlaws annual garden party, where a mix of transgender people and transvestites were present.
      Disentchantment between the two exist at times, as a commitment to transgender people holds a somewhat sacred position and trust is related to this strong commiment.
      It is an issue and development that is happening and which will need far more dedicated scientific and psychological research.
      Lets hope it happens, because it is not a Cinderella issue anymore.

    • Billy Brexit !

      Judging by the results of last week’s election, the far-Left are in the process of being eliminated at least in the UK.
      The problem with identity politics occurs when it enters the real world and when men who claim to be women want to use ladies toilets, ladies changing rooms and enter sporting events as ladies when in fact they have the anatomy of men and win every time. Personally I find it all quite funny that such contradictions are passed off as normal. There will be a reckoning and it’s coming soon.

      • Andyoldlabour

        Billy Brexit !

        I agree with you Billy, it is not normal and it was the sports issues which opened my eyes, back in 2018 when Rachel (Rhys) McKinnon stood head and shoulders above the other two women competitors, after winning the sprint event in the World Masters cycling championships, an event which Rachel won again this year.
        Kent women’s cricket club has a transgender player playing for them – Maxine Blythin – 6′ 4″ tall, born male, played very average club cricket in the male league, but has now averaged more than the great Don Bradman ever achieved, plating against women.

        https://www.kentonline.co.uk/dover/news/dont-speak-for-me-or-my-ovaries-215668/

  • Baalbek

    Very well argued and written. I agree with almost every word. What puzzles me is why some people spend so much passionate energy fighting about an issue that affects ~0.4% of the population when the very system under which we live produces suffering and misery on a much larger scale. When food banks are no longer necessary, when every person has adequate health care, when employers are forced to pay a living wage and when unemployment is no longer a one way ticket into poverty, perhaps then we can debate fringe issues like this one. But doing so while economic and social conditions for many are extremely dire and our entire society is on the brink of collapsing into neoliberal or far-right totalitarianism is a sick joke.

  • Minerva Strom

    *sigh* For men to simply identify as women is deeply problematic. Firstly, it’s simply not true. Secondly and most importantly, it has grossly adverse implications for women.

    I suggest you head over to FairPlayForWomen and WPUK to see why, FeministCurrent etc. Perhaps actually READ what WingsOverScotland says, instead of just being outraged they were silenced.

    You, as a white male, have clearly never had to consider the implications and threats of being in a toilet or restricted area in the way women do. So to blithely dismiss it as a “never been a problem for me!” is naive and ignorant. It’s no coincidence that the UN prioritises safe, well-lit sex-segregated toilets for women and girls in third world countries and refugee camps.

    • N_

      For men to simply identify as women is deeply problematic. Firstly, it’s simply not true.

      I completely agree. But in the postmodern bullsh*t culture, one person’s “truth” is different from another person’s “truth” and there is no absolute truth, and everyone who says there is is condemned as being like Hitler. Then along come those pushing “pragmatism”, and every idiot who wishes to can play their role in the bullsh*t circus. The truth is that there is no huge complexity about bullsh*t being bullsh*t. Of course women should be allowed their own toilets without having men in frocks insisting on being allowed in. It’s f*cking obvious. I already know why. I don’t need to learn why from the UN.

    • A.C.Doyle

      I don’t understand how the matter of toilets has developed into a big issue.
      Usually the arrangements that have been made have been on purely practical grounds.
      For example, in a train, it would not be practical to have any type of segregation, but maybe with some adaptions to ease their use by disabled people.
      Another practical consideration is that, outside the extreme age ranges and some other exceptions, there are those who stand up to p*ss and those who sit down to p*ss.
      So in a less elegant pub, where high throughput and low cost could be priorities, the toilet design (for standuppers) may be a bitumen painted wall with a cement trough at the bottom. Of course, there would always be a more conventional toilet for bowel emptying.
      A conventional toilet used by a standupper is potentially a horrible mess where the user may be p*ssing all over the place as well as in the toilet itself, making it unpleasant for the ladies. Also ladies may require disposal facilites for certain items. Hence, some segregation is desirable.
      As far a the risk of attack, of course risk is a personal perception, but I don’t see an attacker being too troubled by the gender demarcation in a toilet area. However, some public toilet room designs, say well heated, with large open spaces and maybe some chairs etc. may attract strange visitors, making normal users of the facilities feel uncomfortable.

      But nobody is suggesting that the identification of more genders implies a toilet segregation for each type ?

  • glenn_pt

    Sorry if this has already been covered, I have limited bandwidth here.

    The nonsense about accepting males trans’d -> females as athletes competing against one another as physical equals strikes me as giving PC a bad name. The only argument I’ve heard in its defence, on R4 some little while ago, was that testosterone levels are now more or less equal between such competitors, given hormone therapy.

    This assumes that the current levels of testosterone are the only determinant in a person’s physical condition – as if the male characteristics of denser bones, muscle and so on were only a product of the _current_ T levels.

    How does this BS even pass the laugh test? Is an injection of testosterone supposed to turn a small woman into the Hulk, or hormone therapy reducing someone like Mr. T’s current levels supposed to reduce his strength and physical performance down that of a Greta Thornburg?

      • Andyoldlabour

        Mrs Pau!

        Please, please do not ask the IOC, they were advised by and made decisions back in 2015, based on a deeply flawed report by transwoman Joanna Harper.
        The IOC Testosterone levels for transgender (and intersex) athletes are still 5 times higher than those in a female. In 2016 at the Rio Olympics, all 3 athletes on the podium for the women’s 800m were intersex (had XY chromosomes) – Semenya, Niyonsaba and Wambui.
        Craig said this
        “I can see no reason why people cannot participate as the gender of their choice”
        Craig obviously does not care about the effect on women’s sport, sport which has taken so long to evolve, mainly because of the barriers placed by men.

  • Spencer Eagle

    A rather complex subject made all the worse by cowards in politics and the media who fear being labelled by a small but very focal minority, it’s stifling any sensible progress. From a personal perspective I would be polite enough to call any trans person by their chosen first name, however, I would not use the pronouns ‘she’ or ‘her’ for someone who was patently and biologically a he. I am also very much opposed to enforced speech, the criminalisation through ‘hate crime’ legislation of those unwilling to accept this nonsense – 3400 people arrested in the UK in 2017 for something they said online. The 2019 are likely to be double.
    To gain any respect from the general population the LGBT community need to reign themselves in, get organised and get some focussed spokespersons – not just any bloke in a dress who wants to force their views. Currently they are like the universe, expanding rapidly in all directions with no one at all sure how it will conclude. The one area they could voluntarily moderate is trans athletes, currently it is destroying women’s sport and thankfully there are some voices of reason in the trans community on this. Imagine a women training most of her adult life only to be beaten by a hairy arsed bloke, completing because he says so. It’s defacto cheating, yet these selfish morons celebrate their ‘victories’.

  • Laguerre

    Craig, I don’t think this was a good subject to raise. It’s a minority interest. I’ve known a good many trans people, and they’re not at risk of abusing women in the toilets, or in prison. There may be men who dress as women in order to abuse, but they should be easily recognisable. It’s quite difficult for a guy to present himself perfectly as a woman.

    • Mrs Pau!

      And how would you resolve the issue of biological men, self identifying as women, competing against biological women in women’s races?

      • nevermind

        Im more interested in how their lifes develop in a society dripping with haute causine racism, rather than how they perform to the tub thumping nationalistic rythm, chatteraty sports addicts sipping afternoon tea.

        Butsince you ask, there are two categories, women and men and not three, to rule these out or to change the rules to include a third gender category would be the solution, imho.

        • Andyoldlabour

          nevermind

          Yes, sports should be categorised, where women’s sports only allow people with XX chromosomes to take part.

    • Lucinda Stoan

      I used to think like you. An author/organizer on the ecological disaster around us, I steadfastly ignored this issue for years, fearing attacks, and wanting to focus elsewhere. This is much bigger than you realize however. Aside from the large and spreading impacts on women’s rights and spaces (see my article referenced elsewhere in comments), there is a children’s medical abuse crisis underway. The numbers of children (esp girls) being deemed the other sex is skyrocketing, and the effects of puberty blockage/cross-sex hormones/surgery/failure to address underlying serious problems…..are immense and irreversible. The attack on material reality, science and free speech are also huge and have implications beyond sex/gender. Finally, as the “left” abandons rationality, children, and women, it is the right that gathers in those who object to what’s going on. We need to turn and face into this issue, unfortunately.

      • Lucinda Stoan

        Clarification, the –:58 comment from me (Lucinda Stoan) is responding to LaGuerre at 21:42

    • Rod Webb

      This is an issue that affects at least 50% of the population – women. It is NOT a minority issue.

  • Laguerre

    On the question of toilets, in our institute the male toilets are always full of women who haven’t found a place in theirs. So why complaints about men in women’s toilets?

    • Ken Kenn

      Laguerre.

      I’m assuming you are French?

      In France there are mixed toilet facilities.

      As far as I can see (apart from leaving the lid up?) most French people don’t worry too much about it.

      All I can say about gender identity is that all I need to do is know what you want to be called?

      If you are a friend you are a friend.

      You are my friend.

      If you are my friend of course.

      When I was younger I used to knock about with a lot of what were called ‘Tomboys’

      Some were pushy and some were less so, but they enjoyed knocking about with the lads.

      That doesn’t mean they wanted to be lads they just preferred the company of males.

      They had character all of them compared to the one’s who were more submissive.

      They gave as good as they got.

      I like that in any person.

      All I need to know is what is your name and we’ll all get along fine.

      If anyone wants to do the ‘ normal ‘ things then sod them.

      I don’t care and neither should they.

      If you’re a mate – you’re a mate and that’s that.

  • nevermind

    An ex politician nicknamed Miranda today spouted out rethoric that denigrates all those young activists who supported his ex party, whilst his very own periodical septic comments have achieved no more than bile and strife abroad.
    He is a mass murderer who should shut up. He has failed to introduce a financial regulatory framework in 2006 and is solely responsible for blowing tto much wind into the City of Londons sails. He should be fired for bringing his ex party into disrepute and for undermining its electoral effort.
    F…k you off Miranda

    • fedup

      Miranda is a gate keeper (or they -one percentile- think he is), he has two JP Morgan consoles, and can place orders for stocks and bonds from anywhere on the planet, as he visits various despots and chargehands of the parasitic capitalist system around the planet. Miranda is the golden gofer.

      Stopping Corbyn from getting near the levers of the power was not enough, in the current fascist moral panic the very ideas of a centre left political actor is a clear and present danger to the very billionaires who are bent on snuffing out any residual notions of equality and brotherhood as very dangerous notions that are designed to upset the apple-cart and end the tyranny of the few over the many.

      What you see is the continuation of the war on we the people through ending any kind of organised political movement for we the people by we the people. The thrust of the propaganda is; socialism bad/failed/toxic. Rampant parasitic capitalism good/ideal/a must-have.

  • MBC

    I guess the political issue here is that a tiny minority of a minority by demanding the right to self identify their gender if it is different to what they were born with, have the potential to infringe on the rights and protections of 50% of the population. Though as Craig says, the main situation in which this might be a problem would be in women’s competitive sports. I have to say though that the idea of a trans woman (i.e., a biological male identifying as a woman) becoming women’s equality officers does make me feel uncomfortable that women are being once again shoved aside.

    There are medical and psychological issues too about why some people have gender dysphoria and why it is becoming more common. Is it a natural variation as some have suggested? Or is it something else? Could it be due to gender bender chemicals in the environment?

    • Hatuey

      Could it be that big companies are queuing up to sell make-up and other feminising products to men and it would suit them big time if we all felt insecure about leaving home without blusher and mascara on…

      • Giyane

        Some people are confused. Like all those residents in Northern cities with red wall blusher , white wedding tutu and a face like Les Dawson. Boris is going to teach them how to apply the blue eye make up.
        I would never go out in public without my union Jack on.

  • David

    Don’t duck for cover Craig because what you have written is very sensible. What I find most difficult about this issue is why some people are so obsessed with one extreme side of the argument or the other. We are all human, we are all individuals, we are all different and some of the less common differences need to be viewed with sensitivity and care not anger. Live and let live.

  • SA

    Any living organism is a product of three processes, its genetic makeup which cannot be changed and is called a genotype, they way it looks, a phenotype, which is determined mainly by the genotype but may be altered by other factors that may be gestational or post gestational.
    The genotype determines Sex, most higher organisms are either male or female, there is normally no other alternative although some rare abnormalities occur.
    Gender is a much looser term that is not solely determined by sex.
    Sex cannot be changed, what can be changed is some aspects of the phenotype, by hormonal therapy and by surgery.
    In my view it is a mistake not to be clear about these at least in official documentations. Maybe passports and other official documents should have two categories sex at birth and gender.

    • N_

      Some forms now ask whether your sex is male or female and then the next question is how you “identify”. I picture an official staring at the form-filler over their spectacles, basically asking the followup question “ARE YOU SURE?” when the person has already said whether they are male or female. The sane answer to the second question is “F*** OFF”. Or, if you wish to be polite when an idiot has asked you and stupid and insulting question, it is “I REFER YOU TO MY ANSWER TO THE PREVIOUS QUESTION”. But don’t expect to be given the job if you show this amount of sanity and resistance to internalisation of imposed lies. Employers don’t want to employ people like that these days.

  • Ma Laoshi

    The Scotland independence issue is not my fight; World War T is not my fight. But maybe because of this distance, it’s blindingly obvious to me that the latter is brought up only to derail the former. This could be done by open enemies, or covert ones: as Mr. Murray mentioned, one suspects many SNP honchos are rather comfortable with the lucrative status quo. Labour has just lost an election by, among others, losing itself in the maze of PC insanity, chasing ever more marginal minorities to lionize; do the Scots see this as an example to be emulated?

    • joel

      There was no lionization whatsoever of ever more marginal minorities in Labour’s manifesto. I think you are misinterpreting Labour criticism of Islamophobia, the Windrush scandal and Tory racism of every other stripe.

      • Ma Laoshi

        So maybe voters will start caring about manifesto’s when politicians start faithfully implementing them once elected (i.e., never). It’s about the culture nonstop emanating from Labour and Momentum that makes people ask themselves “Do we want these people in charge of our lives?”

        But now that you brought up the I-word: yes the Omerta that allowed the Rotherham scandal to drag on for years is one of the things I’m talking about. You may reasonably say that the other parties were almost as bad; but then at least face that the Tories simply were more competent running their party and campaign.

        Mixed feelings on this one myself since I have many wonderful muslim friends and colleagues. Then again, these are people with life experience in the MENA etc regions, who are absolutely level-headed about some others in the ummah being savage; didn’t make them open-borders advocates.

        How easy should it have been to rip the Tories apart over their wholehearted support of terror in Libya and Syria. But then you’d need to speak honestly about the twin cancers of Zionism and jihadism. Labour won’t go anywhere near that; i.e., they’re useless.

        • Andyoldlabour

          Ma Laoshi

          Two great posts, which have succintly identified the reasons for Labour’s downfall.

      • N_

        I agree there was no lionisation of minorities. That’s standard right-wing racist talk. But – at the risk of going off on a tangent – I would make the point that Labour’s promise to look after the poor and homeless and those who rely on foodbanks found little traction with many working class voters. The Daily Mirror election-day front page “FOR THEM” was a peculiar piece of electioneering. (This is not a criticism of Labour in any way. This was the best manifesto for a very long time.)

        • N_

          That really was a terrible piece of propaganda. Even just the three words “SAVE THE NHS” without any other text or pictures would have been better. (Not brilliant, but better.)

        • joel

          N_, I agree the message should have been paired down to the existential threat to free healthcare. Ultimately though it was the forcing of the “People’s Vote” policy on Corbyn that did the terminal damage. As it was intended to.

  • joel

    Celebratng men who dress up as women has recently developed into a pillar of liberal fundamentalism and corporate advertising. But it is no more a heartfelt identification with an out group than Clintonite/twitterite identity politics is. Rather it has been cynically adopted to valorize western liberalism and demonize approved enemies with more traditional societies. And by corporate boardrooms to profit from conveying a rebellious image.

    Transgenders and transvestites should view their establishment and big business celebrators with due scepticism and recall who was fighting their corner with no ulterior motive back in the 80s and beyond.

  • Chris Barclay

    “I will treat them as female.” Does this imply that you treat men and women differently? I suspect not or at least not beyond affording women more privacy when undressing, taking care not to invade their personal space and behaving in a way that makes it clear that you are not a predatory male. Basic courtesies.These are courtesies though that you would not feel are necessary, if the person is clearly male and passing badly as a female.

    Men to women transgender people frequently make claims such as ‘I live as a woman’, while refusing to explain what this means beyond wearing what society has decided is ‘women’s clothing’. The reason for this refusal is that they would betray that their ideas about gender are based on stereotypical societal constructs.

    I know that asking people for their opinions is going out of fashion. However, perhaps you should ask women why they like segregated toilets. The two most common explanations is that men are dirtier and that any man in a female toilet is immediately identified as a predator. Women who want segregated toilets in public places are usually quite happy to have non-segregated toilets in places where they know all the other users – places such as home or a small workplace.

    • Tatyana

      “…their ideas about gender are based on stereotypical societal constructs” I agree, Chris Barclay. I’ll give my opinion, it may seem unusual connection to your statement, but all I want is to say for myself from my own experience.

      In my country among my generation it was a way hard for me to find a partner. Many families were “one gender families”, that means a mother and a grandmother raising the children, while the father is … Well, fathers are somewhere else. Men living their own lives and women raising children.
      This situation produced a lot of boys who don’t know how to be a man, who is the husband and father. A young woman could find partners for ‘relations’, meaning ‘woman makes my life comfortable and I will give her flowers’, sort of. Lot of infantile boys, with no clear plans and goals, interested only to have as much pleasures as they can, with all sorts of excuses in their heads for this lifestyle. The way they interact with people around them is hard to put in words. It is like trying to please everyone, be nice, be tolerant, never aggressive, always attractive, paying great attention to their looks, hair, fashionable clothes, luxury accessories, concerned with the impression they produce in other people. Not bad, actually, but that was all they are. Nothing more inside. No intention to develop. Quite happy with having looks, manners, some money in the pocket and a woman around to make basic comfort. Image of such a boy is nothing different from the image of a girl.

      My understanding of a Man I’d like to spend my life with, it was different and it took me some time and some marriages to find one. No wonder he was brought up in male-female family. So, I believe that some ‘stereotypical societal constructs’ proved useful, as they exist and last through ages. Otherwise, the humankind would have thrown them away long ago.

      • Giyane

        Tatyana

        Sounds to me like these young men were living double lives with different sexual/ marriage relationships and an icon wife of what we call Victorian respectability.
        In Britain the banks cranking up house prices with low interest loans and divorce law running a bulldozer through who owns the house – it gets divided in two,- couples do not have to be too dependent on each other financially emotionally or in family relations.
        The suitcase is mentally packed at all times.
        Even Boris Johnson’s 10 million pound house stops him from completing his divorce.

        That’s why we have social constructs like marriage to be a buffer against political and financial pressures which force people into bespoke relationships ie unconventional ones. The church has now adopted every freak combination of bespoke convenience as normal. Imho you have done the right thing by continuing to look for the right man instead if bending the rules.

        Not everybody is obsessed with sexuality 100% of the time. My guests at the weekend have a son who was wearing a Jersey with a carrot sticking out of it.
        I asked him if it didn’t remind him of something else. But he refused to be drawn into a rude joke by a respectable adult when he was supposed to be on his best behaviour in someone else’s home.

        What we need is rounded personalities who understand the weird places their imaginations can stretch to, understand the normal rules , and convert the differences and incongruities between the two into humour. Adults are there assist in this process not to assist children in following the weird wanderings of their fantasies or imaginations. Imho

        • Tatyana

          No, they were not having multiple relations. They were rather living with their moms until retirement age.

          Normally, young people in my then-country left their parents’ families at the age of 17-18 when finishing school and leaving for bigger city to study, or to get better job choice, or they may go to serve their 2-years term in the Army (now it is 1 year) and after the service they repeated the pattern.
          I got into the category of young girls who left for bigger city to study. And my environment were mostly students. I was apalled to see how mercantile they turned by the age of 21, when everyone of us were thinking of future life.

          @Giyane, you are an interesting person, I’d really be curious to have longer conversations with you. But let me be honest, please take no offence. You’ve mentioned once you had to fix something in a girl’s appartment and while doing it you talked about Islam with her.
          I don’t know for what purpose you did it, but this is what turns me away from having talks with you. I feel afraid that every dialog would turn to religion, and I just don’t want it.
          If you could take it into consideration, it would really greatly paint colours to my staying on this forum and I’d be so much grateful to you for sharing your opinions.
          Thanks 🙂

    • N_

      Everyone treats men and women differently.

      However, perhaps you should ask women why they like segregated toilets. The two most common explanations is that men are dirtier and that any man in a female toilet is immediately identified as a predator. The two most common explanations is that men are dirtier and that any man in a female toilet is immediately identified as a predator. Women who want segregated toilets in public places are usually quite happy to have non-segregated toilets in places where they know all the other users – places such as home or a small workplace.

      What were the third and fourth most common “explanations”? I think you will find that women like having the common area of toilets before they go into the cubicles as a female-only space, rather than a space with men standing there holding their penises.

      How can “we don’t like men in female toilets because XYZ” be an explanation of why women like there to be female toilets? You’re not thinking straight.

      The reason for this refusal is that they would betray that their ideas about gender are based on stereotypical societal constructs.

      ROFL! Have a look some time at what characteristics are shared by all human societies.

      The garbage that “whether someone is a female is up to them” and “everyone’s view of everything is equally valid” and “who am I to say someone is mentally ill if they say they are sane?” is extremely recent, and it is limited to a small cultural area in the world. It is all about degrading the social fabric and worshipping the empire of the individual, which is to say, the empire of the commodity and the market. It is about atomisation and it is deeply right-wing. Idiots who spout this muck are the same kind of idiots who were fine with the “Aryanisation” of German culture under Hitler. They are tossers who love cultural imperialism.

      It’s so USA, the idea that left means liberal.

      To come back to the earlier point: it is a terrible indictment of current conditions that most people in countries such as Britain are either incapable of forming an expressible opinion for themselves on “what makes males and females different”, even though we all actually DO have an idea about it. They either allow big business and bureaucrats to pull them along by a ring through the nose, or else if they actually do have an opinion they are too scared to express it. If posh people, newsreaders, employers, policy makers and opinion formers told them paedophilia was as “valid” as only being sexually attracted to adults, they would act as if that were true. Similar points could be made about gay adoptions – hardly anyone in public life even ASKS whether it is healthy for children to brought up by two “fathers” or two “mothers” rather than by a mother and father. It’s considered “like Hitler” even to ask that question, or to point out that it’s not asked. Probably only about 1% of the readers of these lines will ever have noticed that that question isn’t asked.

      “Stereotypical societal construct” is not a concept that assists with clarification. (I’m being very polite here). Those who seek clarification should try to knock such garbage concepts out of their heads. We’re not talking about literary criticism here.

  • Mary

    There is an obsession about ‘toilets’ on here with 39 uses of the word in the comment, so far. So posy!

    How about ‘lavatory’, ‘bog’ or ‘khazi’?

      • Giyane

        Hatuey

        … which presumably drain out straight into the sea through holes in the decking. Not much scope for voyeurs perched on the rusty steel work in a gale…
        Sounds like a good location.

  • Ma Laoshi

    I don’t believe I hate trans etc people; I loved “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” when trans was still cool. I hate aggressive, hysterical trans advocates as much as I hate aggressive, hysterical people elsewhere; I have no plans to change this. But with their sky-high suicide rate, our trans friends themselves are telling us that not all is well within their “community”. If the prevalence of teen (and younger) gender dysphoria is indeed ballooning in Western countries (and can we even be sure of that), isn’t it dereliction of duty not to ask “Where are we failing as a society? Should we stop feeding our children hormone-laced crap? Should we maybe clean up our media (a chore the free, brave people of the West have left undone since the Iraq invasion)? Maybe our own liberal culture is the disease?”

    I don’t have the answer but just celebrating the whole affair seems about as off as celebrating HIV infection. Oh I forget, the more “out there” parts of liberal culture are actually doing the latter too. My two cents from a galaxy far, far away.

  • Rhys Jaggar

    Ever since I can remember, I never had any desire to beat anyone up, enforce a dominant hierarchy with me at the top, go to war etc etc.

    Does this mean I am not a man lol?

    I have never had any desire to wear female clothes, never had desire to have a sex change either.

    So I have never considered myself a woman. Shameful!

    Who should I sue for shaming me into feeling I ought to have one of two Stone Age gender stereotypes lol?

    • Tatyana

      Rhys Jaggar, this means just that you live a relatively calm and peaceful life.
      If you had lived in Russia 20-30 years ago, you’d probably found out that either you beat someone up or you got beaten. Either it’s you who is on the top, or you’re the one who is dominated over. Either you go to war, or chechen terrorists come and blow up your subway and theatre.

      • Jack

        Tatyana

        I am a baffled when I see those dash cam videos from Russia on Youtube.
        People get out of the car and start fighting each other for nonsense things.
        Do Russians have a shorter fuse than western europeans you think?
        In the western part of europe, this if completely foreign behavior. People here may not even honk because they dont want to end up in possible trouble. I guess we see both Russia and western europe as on each side of the extreme. One act violently, one do not even act at all.

        • Tatyana

          Jack, my parents witness much more civilized times before Perestroika. I think it is bad legacy of post-USSR mess period of time. People got accustomed to resolve conflicts by themselves, there were no help from police or law, and you could easily escape troubles by bribing a policeman or judge.
          I believe we just need more time to make the law work and people will get used to civilized manners. I already see great changes, next generation will see more.

          • Tatyana

            It is a direct consequence of the fact that people are accustomed to negativity and bad emotions, but not yet used to seeing the inevitable retribution for bad deeds.
            this behavior is senseless anyway. it is destructive.

            but I see how people really become more tolerant, there are reports on social media on cases like asking to take trash thrown on the pavement to the bin. Even a couple of years go you coud expect a “f*ck you” answer, but now people say “excuse me” and pick their trash and carry it to the bin. Little encouraging progress 🙂

    • Giyane

      Of course he does. All representatives of the people enjoy a distinct level of immunity in their roles, including Julian Assange. That’s why they entrapped him with an alleged misdemeanor on his private life. Shitface Justice Baraister knows that better than anyone.

      • OnlyHalfALooney

        Hopefully the European Court of Human Rights will eventually prevent Assange’s extradition, like it did with Abu Qatada. The Council of Europe is separate from the EU. The UK is unlikely to withdraw. After all, it wouldn’t look good for Russia to be a member and the UK not. Although, the UK might simply ignore its findings once EU law no longer applies. The EU and ECJ regard the ECHR and ECtHR as part of the EU legal framework. It will all become a bit more complicated.

        I am still very worried Johnson/Patel will just allow Assange to be bundled off to a US airbase, even if appeals are pending.

  • dog

    There was a rumour in my village that there was a naked transvestite lurking in the woods.

    [Transvestite – from Latin trans-, “across, over” and vestitus, “dressed”]

    What’s one of them, then? A man who’s taken off women’s clothes?

  • Jack

    Gender dysphoria…
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_dysphoria
    seems to be the name of this development in the west.
    What I think is fascinating is why this is happening now, this wasnt an issue just a few decades ago.
    What caused this?
    One could think it is weird but at the same time, who am I to judge how other people should feel about themselves?
    If these gender changing cause people to be happier, go for it. Even though the impact on the mental health must be tremendous for the idividual going through such a sex/personality/change.

    In sports I think its too early though, here we have a able bodied man – well even beyond a regular man in size, strength, that now play in a handball team, for women.
    Needless to say, she dominate the game.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oO_T7K8rsT4

  • Mike Lothian

    Finally, it’s lovely to read someone that gets it and can put it so eloquently

    Rights should not be denied to people just because those rights might be abused

  • Jack

    Another issue is how much focus LGBT topic get from the leftist, liberal parties, it is a small minority still it sometimes get huge, uncalled for, political focus.

    • Carl

      It was your tories who brought in gay marriage. You are going to have to move even further right to oppose this misery being inflicted on you.

  • 6033624

    Having read and commented on this article when you published it I have since then seen Stu Campbell’s article on the subject of his Twitter account being closed.

    Whilst I disagreed with some of what you had written I could see your point and that it IS a debate worth having but looking at Stu Campbell’s examples of his own Tweets which WEREN’T deleted under their ‘hate policy’ I was shocked. He claims not be be homophobic or transphobic (I think?) yet calls transgender people “mentally ill” His comments on these subject have now reached a point where they are damaging his, and with it the wider Independence Movement’s, reputation.

    I’ve admired Stu’s views and his articles on Independence and the politics around it. His insights are excellent and he provides information and stats that just aren’t available ANYWHERE else. But his views on gender issues are damaging to Independence as he is so closely associated with it. I don’t understand why he thinks it appropriate to air the vile Tweets and sentiments behind them and think we’ll follow him like sheep. It’s a matter of time before the press pick this up and blacken all our names with his hate…

    • mogabee

      Are you saying in all honesty that Stu created this issue? Get a grip on reality and realise that there are many, many women waking up to what the Scottish government are proposing and not liking it ONE LITTLE BIT.

      If it wasn’t for him speaking out we would be none the wiser until our rights to safe spaces had been compromised. Of course, that may not be important to you as a man but by god I intend to stand against this madness with thousands of others.

      Btw, don’t be fooled into thinking that the Tories will not use this against independence…they will.

  • Jannie

    “Transgenderism” – decadent, late-Roman perversion and lunacy, a sign of a degenerate culture unable to defend itself should the (Islamic/Russian/Chinese) barbarians come a-knocking.

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