Parliament & trans equality

September 17, 2016

Meet Julia Cushion, your new Westminster UK ‘Outreach and Engagement Officer’ for Parliament’s Department of Information. She can’t tell you what she thinks about politics, except that she thinks Lesbians and Feminists are “awful people” for wanting representation in policy that effects us. Good Luck Westminster lesbians and feminists!

Your ‘Outreach and Engagement Officer’ thinks you – and every feminist ally with concerns about over-broad “Gender Identity” statutes, the legal codification of sex stereotypes, the elimination of lesbian rights to lesbian spaces, and the medicalization of gender non-compliance in children (among other issues) are “awful people”. She wants you to know it so I’m reblogging her post here. Do make a note of it.

Link to events she describes in her post : http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/trans-people-uk-government/#gs.hUn59Ik

*UPDATE- Gosh. Officer Cushion appears to have taken her post offline.

https://clumsyenthusiasm.wordpress.com/2016/09/17/parliament-trans-equality/

I find this interesting. In her post of September 2, Ms. Julia Cushion describes her new position as Outreach and Engagement Officer for Westminster. She explains that a condition of her Parliamentary service is that she must remain apolitical. See screencap here:

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Yet on September 17, she writes a post describing the brilliant lesbian and Women’s Rights activists, authors, and educators who spoke at the Women’s Equality forum, including the renowned Lesbian Feminist author and professor Sheila Jeffreys, as “awful people” because Ms. Julia Cushion is against lesbian and women’s rights to representation.

Not only are lesbian and feminist politics “awful” to Ms. Cushion, but we are “awful people” entirely. See Julia Cushion’s relevant statements here:

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Now, I’m not going to call Julia Cushion an “awful person” for sharing her  homophobic and misogynist views. Clearly she is a completely uninformed about the issues as she admits herself. She knows nothing about transgender people, lesbians or feminism.

That someone so completely clueless might lunge clumsily and publicly in defense of a politics they’ve never deeply considered is not unique.

What I find interesting is that Ms. Cushion believes that lesbian and feminist concerns are so maligned that publicly bashing lesbians and feminists as “awful people” is a position safe to take- even for an individual whose government position is conditioned on impartiality. The hatred of lesbians and feminists expressed by Ms. Cushion- not just politically, but as people, is remarkable.

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“Universal Mother” [artist unknown]

The American Sociological Association invited University of California at Davis Sociology student Kristi Hilton Ryan to present the results of an unpublished paper concerning 36 subjects at their 2016 annual meeting.

Why such a high honor for a student study of a tiny number of subjects? Popularity of the topic: family dynamics of children being diagnosed as ‘transgender’.

Hilton Ryan is a heterosexual female whose only connection with members of the LGBT is one of academic curiosity. However, rather than being an objective observer, Hilton Ryan, who has never engaged with the century plus published female-authored analysis of gender (see: feminism; women’s liberation) has stated for the record that she believes “gender”- the ritualized socially mandated roles of male domination and female subordination- should be “celebrated”.

Single parents were excluded from Hilton Ryan’s study. The co-parents of the 36 subjects were “predominantly white, middle class, geographically diverse.” Most were parents of children between the ages of 5-9 who identify their children as transgender and whose children have already “socially transitioned”, meaning they have adopted opposite sex stereotypes (name changes, clothing) and either demand a right to compel bystanders to pretend that their children are the opposite sex and/or take steps to support their child in keeping their true sex a secret (changing schools, secrecy, etc.)

Although the study is unpublished, a press release and interviews outline some of Hilton Ryan’s findings:

The parents in her study were predominantly white, middle class, and residents of the United States.

The majority of parents self identify as liberals or progressives.

Parents of transgender children were more likely than the general population to be gay, lesbian or bisexual (19%).

Prior to diagnosis as transgender “Nearly all” parents believed their children were exhibiting pre-homosexual behaviors and would develop into gay adults.

Parents tried to force their children to stop gender nonconforming behaviors such as choosing non-stereotypical toys or clothes prior to diagnosing them as transgender.

Parents of transgender children diagnosed their male children earlier: between the ages of 3-5 for males and females between 9-14.

“All” male children in the study were diagnosed as transgender by their parents before the age of five and “most” before the age of three.

“Most” female children were identified by their parents as transgender after the onset of puberty.

Parents of female children were more immediate “instant adopters” of a transgender diagnosis.

No parents in the study used the descriptors “genderqueer” or “nonbinary” or “gender fluid” to describe their child.

Mothers “overwhelmingly” take the lead in diagnosing their children as transgender.

Mothers of transgender children take on the majority of parenting responsibilities.

The majority of heterosexual mothers of transgender children are more professionally qualified than their husbands.

51% of heterosexual mothers of transgender children have advanced education that vastly exceeds their husbands.

From Diana Tourjee’s Vice.com piece titled: “How the Mother’s of Transgender Children Are Changing The World” –

“According to Ryan’s study, mothers usually take on the majority of parenting responsibilities despite being more professionally qualified than their husbands. Fifty-one percent of heterosexual mothers in Ryan’s study have “a higher level of education than their partners, with discrepancies as wide as mothers holding professional or doctoral degrees while their husband’s hold associates degrees or less,” the study reads. Nonetheless, it was the mothers in Ryan’s study that gave up their jobs in order to raise the kids and “bear the brunt of the childcare labor, and by extension the brunt of the care related to their child’s gender diversity.” One working mother told Ryan she handled more than 90 percent of her trans child’s needs, even though the kid’s father is retired.”

Transgender mother blogger “Raising Jeremy” reflected on the exalted status of traditional motherhood that she experiences in her role as parent of a transgender child in her latest post addressing a new phenomenon: women falsely identifying themselves as parents of transgender children in order to join and participate in their private groups.

“I’ve been pondering what would motivate someone to pose as a parent of a transgender child”, she writes in  “Do You Want To Be Me?”:

“From the outside looking in, for the person who is not going through what we are going through, I guess we look inspirational.  I’ve realised it’s because we are.”

She continues:

“You accepted your child, and there are days that are hard and shitty and yet you still turn up.  You turn up because one of the miracles in your family needs you.  You turn up because your child’s smile is precious and seeing it is its own reward.  You turn up because their happiness is your breath.  You are the tireless voice even when you are so very tired.  You are a million conversations with strangers to demystify being transgender / gender diverse.  You are signatures on petitions  to have discriminatory laws overturned from bathroom bills to access to cross hormone treatment.  You are strong voices howling into the maelstrom of life that our children are valid, wonderful and miraculous, look them in the eye and keep trying to deny our truth.”

She concludes:

“We are thousands of stories of ordinary people on an extraordinary parenting journey.  What binds us is that we are testament to the power of love.”

 

Hilton Ryan’s finding that mothers of transgender children are using their children to express and perform exalted female gender stereotypes of caregiving and motherhood is not unique. “Transgender” has always been used as a foil for bystanders and an opportunity to anxiously perform overt ritualized behaviors of male domination and female subordination under the guise of being “progressive”.

Witness mainstream gay male culture’s sexism, embrace of masculinity, rejection of gender nonconforming males and financing of the transgender child movement. Witness the lesbian embrasure of a soccer mom “baby boom” and rejection of feminism and gender noncompliant women. Witness liberal men passionately “white knighting” to protect the safety and dignity of the “ladies” who are male- in stark contrast to any such engagement ever offered in defense of the precarious actual rights of actual females. Witness liberal women abdicating legal protections for women in favor of protecting the feelings of men.

Transgender is an opportunity for everyone to nostalgically embrace, perform, and enforce sex-based archetypes, shrilly, on the eve of their -hopefully inevitable- collapse.

 

 

Virgin-Mary-Assumption-0311Ma maaaa! 

 

 

gekko cher terfIn honor of Cher’s incoherent streak of anti-feminist and anti-lesbian “TERF” tweets over the last 24 hours I am having this lovely needlepoint pattern stitched onto a pillow to rest on the divan in my sitting room:

 

cher needlepoint   

That is all.🙂

 

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A historic first in the annals of gender: a preliminary survey of over two hundred female detransitioners has been completed. Read the results here:

http://guideonragingstars.tumblr.com/post/149877706175/female-detransition-and-reidentification-survey

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crashchaoscats

Hey Julia,
My name is Crash and I‭’‬m a detransitioned woman.‭ ‬I blog about how and why I came to transition and then detransition at crashchaoscats.wordpress.com and at crashchaoscats.tumblr.com.‭ ‬I‭’‬ve been talking to,‭ ‬hanging out and organizing with other detransitioned women for around three years now.‭ ‬In that time I have watched and helped our community emerge.‭ ‬I‭’‬m going to stick to talking mostly about detransitioned women and not touch on detransitioned men because I can‭’‬t speak to their experience.

Look,‭ ‬you say you want the trans community to support detransitioned people but you just wrote an article that distorts and misrepresent our reality.‭ ‬It doesn‭’‬t help me or other detransitioned people when you spread misinformation about us.‭ ‬You‭’‬re not the first trans activist to do so and I don‭’‬t expect you to be the last.‭ ‬I‭’‬ve been reading the articles trans activists write about detransition for years now…

View original post 2,734 more words

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Photo from Twiter

*BREAKING STORY*

London – Furious at the impending erasure of women’s rights resulting from the 2015 Parliamentary Women and Equalities Committee Report headed by the Conservative Party’s Maria Miller, women representing a coalition of feminist, progressive, and lesbian organizations picketed today’s Westminster Social Policy Forum on Transgender Rights.

 

Protesters expressed outrage at the Committee’s recommendation to remove sex-based protections for women and girls by erasing the protected category of ‘sex’ and replacing it with an undefined category of ‘gender identity’. The proposed change would eliminate the ability of women to seek redress under law for sex discrimination and sex inequality. Such violations would no longer be recognized by the state as the category of ‘sex’ itself would no longer exist.

 

If the Equality Committee’s recommendations go forth as planned, the elimination of legal sex as a protected class will be replaced by an individual’s declaration of their subjective and internal gender-based “feelings”. This would give men who proclaim such gender feelings the legal right to expose themselves in women’s locker rooms and other single-sex facilities where public nudity occurs and where women are particularly vulnerable. Convicted male prisoners who proclaim gender feelings will be housed in cells with confined female prisoners who will have no legal grounds to object. Men will have the right to compete in women’s sports, apply for women’s scholarships, and the right to serve as female proxies by occupying affirmative action slots which formerly served to address sex inequality in women’s representation in public life. Single-sex rape crisis services, women’s refuges, lesbian public events, will become illegal on the grounds they discriminate against the gender feelings of men.

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From a flyer distributed at the protest:

 

Women’s voices are being ignored and our rights eroded in the name of ‘transgender equality’. Current policy recommendations regarding transgender rights have a potentially adverse effect on women in a number of ways:

 

  • The pressure on parents to accept a trans diagnosis for a gender non-conforming child, based on gender stereotypes of clothing and toy preferences; or in the case of teenagers, to give in to the social media contagion to which they might be susceptible.

 

  • The threat to current sex-based rights, which keep males and females segregated in public places where women and girls might be physically vulnerable. These include toilets, changing rooms, rape crisis centres, refuges, hospital wards and prisons.

 

  • The inclusion of male-bodied, male-socialised people, into areas of success and achievement where women currently have their own space in order to make competition fair or to level the playing field. These include sports, prizes and awards, shortlists and quotas.

 

  • The negative affect on the lesbian community of the pressure on young women to identify as trans rather than as lesbian. There is also pressure to accept male-bodied self-identified ‘lesbians’ as sexual partners.

 

  • The skewing of national statistics regarding crime, due to the higher rate of offending by male transitioners as opposed to women, with possible knock-on effects on funding for women’s services.

 

  • The effect on the ‘trans widows’ of men (and it mostly is men) who transition in middle age. There is nowhere for these women to turn: all the help and support is directed towards the ‘trans’ person.

 

  • The changing of language pertinent to women and girls in order to make it more trans-inclusive, thereby making ‘women’s issues’ impossible to talk about. This includes the use of such terms as ‘pregnant people’ by health providers.

 

 

No women’s groups were invited to testify at the 2015 Women’s and Equalities Committee hearings on the largest proposed rollback to the legal status of women since the birth of the Suffrage Movement.

The Independent covered the growing outrage in January of this year, reporting on Committee Chair MP Maria Miller: “The former Culture secretary said she was taken aback by the “extraordinary” hostility from a minority of women “purporting to be feminists”.

“The only negative reaction that I’ve seen has been by individuals purporting to be feminists,” Miller went on to say.

Fellow committee member, Labour MP Jess Phillips, was quoted as saying: “Some feminists prioritise gender equality above all else, but I think we should also do our bit to promote general equality.”

 

Today’s public forum at Congress Centre in London was organized by the same individuals behind the proposal to erase legal sex-based protections for women and girls. From the event page:

We are delighted to include at this seminar keynote addresses from Jackie Driver, Director, Funded Programmes, Equality and Human Rights Commission; Will Huxter, Regional Director of Specialised Commissioning (London) and Chair, Gender Identity Task and Finish Group, NHS England and Ade Rawcliffe, Creative Diversity Manager, Channel 4.

Helen Belcher, Trustee, Trans Media Watch; Dr Polly Carmichael, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Director, Gender Identity Development Service, Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust; Peter Dawson, Deputy Director, Prison Reform Trust; Dave Frost, Vice-Chair, LGBT Committee, Equity; Susie Green, Chief Executive Officer, Mermaids UK; Dr Debbie Hayton, Head of Physics, King Henry VIII School, Coventry, West Midlands; Member, NASUWT and Member, TUC LGBT Committee; Delia Johnston, Specialist Diversity Consultant, Trans in Sport; Anna Lee, Vice President, Welfare and Community, Lancaster University Students’ Union; Megan Key, Equalities Manager, National Probation Service; Steve Mulcahy, Headteacher, Richard Lander School, Cornwall have also agreed to speak.

Baroness Barker, Vice Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Rights and Ruth Cadbury MP, Member, Women and Equalities Committee have kindly agreed to chair this seminar.

The agenda [http://www.westminsterforumprojects.co.uk/forums/agenda/transgender-equality-2016-agenda.pdf]

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Photo from Twitter

Women’s groups represented at the protest include the Women and Girls Equality Network, Transgender Trend, UK Lesbian Rights Group, and Parents Campaigning for Sex Equality for Children, among others.

Another flyer from protesters:

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*UPDATES TO THIS STORY WILL BE POSTED IN COMMENTS BELOW*

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Photo from Twitter

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