Transsexualism – wanting to change physical sex because you feel you are ‘in the wrong body’ – has become an increasingly high-profile issue. People in the public eye have ‘changed their sex’, and the media normalises transsexualism. There has been a corresponding push for greater transsexual rights. This briefing introduces some of the issues at stake.
The Government’s aim of making it easier to ‘change sex’ has prompted more commentators to speak out on the issue of transsexualism.
Last month, equalities minister Justine Greening announced that the Gender Recognition Act would be reviewed, saying ‘intrusive’ medical checks should be removed.
Brendan O’Neill and The Sunday Times’ Jenny McCartney are the latest to respond to “deeply confusing” plans, following similar concerns from Tim Stanley, Clare Foges, James Delingpole and Graeme Archer.
O’Neill, Editor of online magazine Spiked, said: “The authoritarian implications of the government-backed trans agenda are chilling.”
He added that the plans “should alarm anyone who believes in reason and freedom”.
The Government has said it wants to “streamline and de-medicalise the process for changing gender”.
However, O’Neill likened this to George Orwell’s novel 1984, saying: “We must accept the lie. Like Winston Smith in Nineteen Eighty-Four, beavering away at the past-altering Ministry of Truth, we are made to lie.”
The authoritarian implications of the government-backed trans agenda are chilling.
He said the plans “would have numerous socially destructive consequences”.
“As some feminist campaigners have pointed out, they would plot a legal minefield through everyday public life, with men who identify as women potentially demanding access to women’s spaces or resources.
“From public bathrooms to rape-crisis centres to women-only colleges, the self-identifying female could legitimately barge into them all.”
Writing in The Sunday Times, Jenny McCartney warned that it would push the idea that “identity trumps biology while ignoring the perils”.
The columnist believes gender would be “legally located within the mind” under the plans, and that most people find the plans “deeply confusing”.
McCartney also pointed out that the demands of the trans lobby “have been accepted by politicians as an automatic good without any debate about the pitfalls”.
Last week, a gay man who acted as speech writer to a Cabinet Minister argued that the Government’s plans will endanger young people.
Writing for Conservative Home, Graeme Archer warned: “To proclaim that psychology drives biology, rather than the reverse, is to say that political will can trump scientific reality.”