X Close

How the trans census fooled Britain Tribal speech codes breed linguistic compliance

Would you Adam and Eve it? (Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Would you Adam and Eve it? (Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)


April 14, 2023   5 mins

Last weekend brought surprising news: an unprecedented spike in the number of West Ham fans identifying as trans. According to the 2021 Census, the London borough of Newham has the highest proportion of trans people in England and Wales, coming in at a staggering 1.5%. Meanwhile, the “trans-friendly” city of Brighton and Hove languishes in the rankings at a lowly 20th, a bit like the UK at Eurovision.

Marvellous as it is to imagine the Cockney heartlands full of Paris Is Burning re-enactments, a more plausible explanation is that many of those Newhamites answering “yes” to the trans question didn’t understand what they were saying. Newham, after all, has relatively high numbers of immigrants and non-English speakers; and as an investigation by academic Michael Biggs has revealed, the strongest predictor of trans identification within a local authority is the proportion of people whose main language is not English. Once this was pointed out, the Office for National Statistics acknowledged it was “possible” that respondents misinterpreted the question, and confirmed it would investigate the findings.

On reflection, such confusion was easily predictable — and not just for non-native speakers. The Census asked: “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?” Even assuming you successfully parsed its off-putting syntax, a number of serious ambiguities remain.

Is a “gender” a grammatical category, a synonym for maleness or femaleness, a set of sociocultural meanings, or a psychological identity? According to the Oxford Learner’s Dictionary, it could be any of these. So, whether or not you “identify with” a gender (or, even more clumsily, have a “gender you identify with”) will partly depend on what you think “gender” is. It also partly depends upon what you think “to identify with” means, since this is hardly an everyday term. And then there’s the awkward fact that, if you are an immigrant without a birth certificate, you may not take yourself to have a “sex registered at birth” at all.

One might ask why the statisticians at the ONS got this so wrong, given that one of their main jobs is to design survey questions that don’t invite false positives. By the ONS’s own admission, the trans question was trialled by means of “community testing at LGBT History Month events”, which is a bit like gauging atheists’ understanding of the Catholic Mass by means of community testing at the Vatican. Why didn’t those in charge anticipate that a question couched in obscure genderese might stump noninitiates, even if it would please their Stonewall overlords?

The most obvious hypothesis would be that the ONS was cajoled, guilt-tripped, befuddled and emotionally blackmailed into linguistic compliance, like many a fellow national institution before it. Maybe so, but a wider explanation is also available: that those who designed the question didn’t even realise it was couched in obscure genderese. They took their own standards of linguistic apprehension to be universal and binding.

This is a tendency that extends well beyond transactivism. Word choices can have many functions apart from direct communication, and an obvious one is to convey the status of the speaker or author. Now that many of us spend our days sitting around scrolling emails and timelines, reading snippets and writing things with our thumbs, word choices are one of the main opportunities to socially signal. Slang, jargon, abbreviations and buzzwords are all ways to imply that you’re in a particular crowd.

Belonging also requires knowing what words not to use. As social animals, we can’t help but practise what linguistics expert Deborah Cameron calls “verbal hygiene”: trying to purify language of socially problematic word choices. If you’re a well-off Tory, you’ll want to avoid terms such as “toilet”, “lounge” and “settee”. If you’re a well-off Lefty, you’ll want to avoid phrases such as “ladies and gentlemen”, “cancel culture” and “lab leak”. The Right dislikes grammatical solecisms, especially when committed by Angela Rayner; the Left is much more concerned with moral solecisms. Either way, though, it’s at least partly a way of indicating who’s in and who’s out.

Many of us practise verbal hygiene simply in order to have an easier life. Some enjoy throwing the rulebook at others as a means of social control. Still more hubristic individuals — usually with PhDs — try to rewrite the rules altogether, inventing new lexical standards out of the blue and then associating any deviance from them with a suspect character. In certain circles, serious disagreement about meaning is cast as linguistic violence, and semantic power grabs are attributed to everyone but oneself. They want to “create divides” ,“police” categories and “colonise” minds and vocabularies. We are simply building a better world from our book-lined offices, one enforced redefinition at a time.

Whatever their provenance, knowing the speech codes for your own social group is consistent with relaxing them for others. It is possible and indeed desirable to understand that not every deviation from a group norm is a deliberate rule break; that sometimes people just aren’t familiar with the rules in the first place. Children and pensioners should get leeway for most forms of expression; either it’s too early for them or too late. Sometimes a white person will say “some of my best friends are black” simply because some of her best friends are black. She isn’t automatically to know that some count it as a racist dog whistle. And sometimes a man will enthuse innocently about feminist causes on behalf of his “wife and daughters” without realising his supposedly terrible anti-feminist error. He just means it.

Familiarity with your own group’s linguistic rules is also consistent with recognising that observance is a poor general guide to much else about a person. Manipulative types will mould their language in ways that invite confidence and disguise true motives. History is littered with gullible upper-class people, lured into handing over their assets to con artists who can accurately state the difference between “less” and “fewer”. The gunman who killed five people in Louisville last week was reported as having listed his pronouns on LinkedIn.

Trouble also arises when you’re an unreflective type who only ever encounters people in your own tribe, and who takes your intuitions about verbal hygiene to determine everyone else’s impurity. In institutions dominated by those of a certain age, income bracket, political sensibility or educational background, this is a real risk. Exacerbating this risk is the widespread reduction in meeting others face-to-face at work and in socialising outside of the office, both of which remove valuable opportunities to get to know human nature in the wild. If life is a series of highly straitened, professionalised encounters with people like yourself — if, say, you never meet a working-class person who you aren’t paying for something — it’s no wonder that failures of imagination occur about what others might be saying or hearing, by way of the very same words.

At worst, this myopia can lead to serious miscarriages of justice, especially when the semantically short-sighted have influence on the judicial system. This week also brought news of Christopher Mitchell, a welder from Caister-on-Sea convicted of aggravated “hate crimes” for making statements critical of a Drag Queen Story Hour event at a local library. For writing in a Facebook post that the drag queen in question was “grooming children” and that the parents of attendees “clearly have serious issues and should have their devices checked”, Mitchell received a 12-month community order including 20 rehabilitation days, 150 hours’ unpaid work, and a fine of £1,500. To anyone not already mired in rainbow-sanctioned speech codes — according to which the word “grooming” must never be applied to brave and stunning LGBT+ folk — this looks like a serious overreaction to the exercise of free speech.

But if fear of harming others doesn’t lead to more circumspection in interpreting others by one’s own lights, then perhaps the fear of harming personal reputations will. Mindlessly following unacknowledged tribal speech codes can result in extremely lazy thinking. Those responsible for the Census debacle at the ONS now look ridiculous; as does the BBC reporter who interviewed Elon Musk on Wednesday, so sure of received wisdom that Twitter is awash with hate speech that he hadn’t bothered to memorise any examples before confronting Musk about it. In a similar vein, the FBI were also made to look daft this week, when FOIs revealed they rather histrionically had classified common internet slang such as “redpilled” or “based” as indicative of “violent extremism” linked to the incel movement.

But when it comes to second-hand embarrassment, perhaps nothing tops Stonewall CEO and self-described “data geek” Nancy Kelley, cheerfully tweeting on Census publication day about how happy she was that her manor in Newham was so full of trans people. As Kelley’s fellow Newhamites might put it, it’s amazing what confirmation bias can make you Adam and Eve.


Kathleen Stock is an UnHerd columnist and a co-director of The Lesbian Project.
Docstockk

Join the discussion


Join like minded readers that support our journalism by becoming a paid subscriber


To join the discussion in the comments, become a paid subscriber.

Join like minded readers that support our journalism, read unlimited articles and enjoy other subscriber-only benefits.

Subscribe
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

164 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

Surely if you want to count transsexuals, you can count the number of sex-change operations conducted each year. I bet the answer is less than 1000.

If you like to wear women’s clobber but want to keep the old fella, you shouldn’t count in the stats.

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Brian Delamere
Brian Delamere
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

You’re confusing transvestites with transsexuals. The LGBTQ+ activists have done untold damage to the gay community. Gay activists in the 80’s spent all their time schooling people that they were gay: Fully functional males, not paedos, not liking to dress up in women’s clothes, not a biological anomaly, not men who hate women or had some issues with their mothers. Just Gay

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

Thank you Brian. Too few people appreciate this.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Allie McBeth

Many more do not care and are bored stiff by all this pouffe whinging.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Allie McBeth

Many more do not care and are bored stiff by all this pouffe whinging.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

Fair point, but why then did the Gay activists in Stonewall add the TQ+ given the obvious downsides for vanilla Gays? Surely TQ+ could have been told to start their own campaigning organisation instead of piggybacking on a successful organisation and pushing an ideology that seems to be essentially anti-gay?

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Given that several founders of Stonewall have now quit and even denounced it, I’m not so sure that they were the activists who pushed for a change of direction. As for those that did, well, what do you do when you win the war and don’t want to lose your influence and income stream?

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

I thought that Stonewall was a US private equity fund?

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

I thought that Stonewall was a US private equity fund?

Julie Coates
Julie Coates
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Simple Jeremy, they already had a pathway via their campaign for their hugely successful gay rights campaign and used these networks to keep the cash flowing in by turning their attention to the trans ideology movement.
A bit like drug runners using the old alcohol routes during prohibition.

Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

The gay activists added the TQ+ when it became apparent there was money in it and an opportunity to cause trouble.

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Given that several founders of Stonewall have now quit and even denounced it, I’m not so sure that they were the activists who pushed for a change of direction. As for those that did, well, what do you do when you win the war and don’t want to lose your influence and income stream?

Julie Coates
Julie Coates
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Simple Jeremy, they already had a pathway via their campaign for their hugely successful gay rights campaign and used these networks to keep the cash flowing in by turning their attention to the trans ideology movement.
A bit like drug runners using the old alcohol routes during prohibition.

Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

The gay activists added the TQ+ when it became apparent there was money in it and an opportunity to cause trouble.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

The “confusing” difference between transvestites and transsexuals is lost on me. High heels and sparkles, I suppose. Otherwise they’re pretty much the same.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago

My understanding is that transsexuals are people who have the biological characteristics of both sexes, whereas transvestites are people who like to dress in clothes associated with the opposite sex.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Transexual used to mean someone who had medically and surgically ‘transitionec’; they hadn’t changed sex but had simulated the sexual characteristics of the opposite sex and ‘lived as’ the opposite sex.
Transvestite meant someone who wore the clothes and aped the mannerisms of the opposite sex – all of this generally depended on heavily regressive stereotypes of dress and behaviour. They did not remove or modify their sexual characteristics.
You may be confusing transexuals with people with Disorders of Sexual Development (DSDs) which we used to call intersex. They are all either biologically male or biologically female but may have some ambiguities in how genitalia etc have formed during gestation. They are nothing to do with trans though the trans lobby tries to use them to make their arguments.

Alan Tonkyn
Alan Tonkyn
1 year ago
Reply to  S Wilkinson

An excellent and succinct set of definitions, and your use of ‘simulated’ regarding transsexuals is very apt. However, a problem is currently being created by people who seem to fall in between the transsexuals and transvestites, as your ‘used to’ implies. We now have people who ‘self-identify’ as the opposite sex (ie They don’t just dress up in the clothes associated with that sex, but claim to BE that sex), but don’t have the surgery to complete the ‘simulation’.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Alan Tonkyn

Thank you Alan. I was careful to place these definitions in the past because the terms and their meanings have been deliberately obscured in the blatant language hijacking.
The current umbrella ‘trans’ identity is really about fantasy, fanaticism, feelings and fetish. Therefore transvestites have been able to find a happy home within it.
Ironically, the group who have been left behind by the current ‘trans’ lobby are the real minority – transexuals as we once recognised them. Those I knew were quiet, self effacing people who went out of their way not to attract notice or distress others.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Alan Tonkyn

Thank you Alan. I was careful to place these definitions in the past because the terms and their meanings have been deliberately obscured in the blatant language hijacking.
The current umbrella ‘trans’ identity is really about fantasy, fanaticism, feelings and fetish. Therefore transvestites have been able to find a happy home within it.
Ironically, the group who have been left behind by the current ‘trans’ lobby are the real minority – transexuals as we once recognised them. Those I knew were quiet, self effacing people who went out of their way not to attract notice or distress others.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
1 year ago
Reply to  S Wilkinson

Those kind of people are incredibly rare.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Conrad

They are.
So now the ‘science wing’ of trans activism is trying to include all sorts of normal chromosomal variations in their definition of ‘Intersex’ to inflate the numbers. This in turn allows them to add them to the total number of the mythically oppressed.
Those actually diagnosed with DSDs have repeatedly told the TRAs to leave them out of the argument but to no avail.
The trans lobby has no shame.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony Conrad

They are.
So now the ‘science wing’ of trans activism is trying to include all sorts of normal chromosomal variations in their definition of ‘Intersex’ to inflate the numbers. This in turn allows them to add them to the total number of the mythically oppressed.
Those actually diagnosed with DSDs have repeatedly told the TRAs to leave them out of the argument but to no avail.
The trans lobby has no shame.

Alan Tonkyn
Alan Tonkyn
1 year ago
Reply to  S Wilkinson

An excellent and succinct set of definitions, and your use of ‘simulated’ regarding transsexuals is very apt. However, a problem is currently being created by people who seem to fall in between the transsexuals and transvestites, as your ‘used to’ implies. We now have people who ‘self-identify’ as the opposite sex (ie They don’t just dress up in the clothes associated with that sex, but claim to BE that sex), but don’t have the surgery to complete the ‘simulation’.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
1 year ago
Reply to  S Wilkinson

Those kind of people are incredibly rare.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Transsexuals are those that have had a sex change operation, transvestites are those that dress up as the opposite sex. Transgender is a word made up to blur the lines between the two and confuse the conversation

Diane Tasker
Diane Tasker
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Eg Isla Bryson

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Diane Tasker

Precisely. He is a transvestite, and exploited the confusion caused by the word transgender to get himself moved to a female prison

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Diane Tasker

Precisely. He is a transvestite, and exploited the confusion caused by the word transgender to get himself moved to a female prison

Diane Tasker
Diane Tasker
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Eg Isla Bryson

Rob Nock
Rob Nock
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Think you are thinking of intersex people. Trans people are just those who are 1 sex but feel as if they are/should be the other.
Basically a mental illness known as gender dysphoria.

Alan Tonkyn
Alan Tonkyn
1 year ago
Reply to  Rob Nock

Exactly, Rob: a mental illness deserving pity and, if possible, some form of therapy, but not acceptance of the delusional aspect.

Alan Tonkyn
Alan Tonkyn
1 year ago
Reply to  Rob Nock

Exactly, Rob: a mental illness deserving pity and, if possible, some form of therapy, but not acceptance of the delusional aspect.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

That’s intersex people not transsexuals. Transvestites are focused on the dressing up thing , whereas transsexuals think they have a female ‘soul’ .

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Transexual used to mean someone who had medically and surgically ‘transitionec’; they hadn’t changed sex but had simulated the sexual characteristics of the opposite sex and ‘lived as’ the opposite sex.
Transvestite meant someone who wore the clothes and aped the mannerisms of the opposite sex – all of this generally depended on heavily regressive stereotypes of dress and behaviour. They did not remove or modify their sexual characteristics.
You may be confusing transexuals with people with Disorders of Sexual Development (DSDs) which we used to call intersex. They are all either biologically male or biologically female but may have some ambiguities in how genitalia etc have formed during gestation. They are nothing to do with trans though the trans lobby tries to use them to make their arguments.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Transsexuals are those that have had a sex change operation, transvestites are those that dress up as the opposite sex. Transgender is a word made up to blur the lines between the two and confuse the conversation

Rob Nock
Rob Nock
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Think you are thinking of intersex people. Trans people are just those who are 1 sex but feel as if they are/should be the other.
Basically a mental illness known as gender dysphoria.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

That’s intersex people not transsexuals. Transvestites are focused on the dressing up thing , whereas transsexuals think they have a female ‘soul’ .

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
1 year ago

That’s what I thought. Transvestites were those who dressed up as women, but maybe those people have become today’s transexuals because of the new political climate.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago

My understanding is that transsexuals are people who have the biological characteristics of both sexes, whereas transvestites are people who like to dress in clothes associated with the opposite sex.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
1 year ago

That’s what I thought. Transvestites were those who dressed up as women, but maybe those people have become today’s transexuals because of the new political climate.

Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

You have confused yourself, Brian – Matt makes no reference to the ‘gay community’, either explicit or implicit. If you are keen to take offence on behalf of gay men who like to dress as women, please go right ahead, but Matt was distinguishing between persons who have undergone surgery for the purpose of sex reassignment, aka gender-affirming surgery, and those who ‘identify as trans’ in some other way. It seems that Matt thinks these other ways shouldn’t be taken seriously – or at least not for the purposes of the Census. Of course, some alternative forms of ‘gender-affirming treatment’ are deadly serious. And then, for example, there is Thomas Gordon of Edinburgh, caught on CCTV drop-kicking a cat, who simply assumed the name ‘Rebecca’ for his recent court appearance, and immediately became a woman in the eyes of the Court and the Press. Others do nothing at all. A significant number cross-dress. And: the whole article is about the ‘trans census’.

Any attempt to count people in what can only be called a chaotic category was probably doomed from the start. Recently a colleague confided in me that both her 20-something son and daughter are ‘trans-questioning’, and one can only guess what they made of the Census question.

As it is, asked, “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?” 93.5% answered “Yes”, 6% wisely ignored the question, and 0.5% answered “No” – of these about half would not or could not say what they consider their gender to be, which may mean they are totally confused or just having a laugh, 0.10% identified as trans women, 0.10% as trans men, 0.06% as neither one thing or the other, and 0.04% as something else entirely (which we need not go into here).

Adding the trans persons together gives a total of around 96,000, of whom around 6,500 have a Gender Recognition Certificate (assuming that no-one who has one has died or emigrated since 2005). And the total number may, as Professor Stock has pointed out, be greatly inflated due to ideological capture of the ONS. It’s difficult to take any part of this process seriously, but no-one is laughing.

Last edited 1 year ago by Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

You have confused yourself, Brian – Matt makes no reference to the ‘gay community’, either explicit or implicit. Old fella is code for p***s. If you are keen to take offence on behalf of gay men, please go right ahead, but Matt was distinguishing between persons who have undergone surgery for the purpose of sex reassignment, aka gender-affirming surgery, and those who ‘identify as trans’ in some other way. It seems that Matt thinks these other ways shouldn’t be taken seriously – or at least not for the purposes of the Census. Of course, some alternative forms of ‘gender-affirming treatment’ are deadly serious. And then, for example, there is Thomas Gordon of Edinburgh, caught on CCTV drop-kicking a cat, who simply assumed the name ‘Rebecca’ for his recent court appearance, and immediately became a woman in the eyes of the Court and the Press. Others do nothing at all. A significant number cross-dress. And: the whole article is about the ‘trans census’.

Any attempt to count people in what can only be called a chaotic category was probably doomed from the start. Recently a colleague confided in me that both her 20-something son and daughter are ‘trans-questioning’, and one can only guess what they made of the Census question.

As it is, asked, “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?” 93.5% answered “Yes”, 6% wisely ignored the question, and 0.5% answered “No” – of these about half would not or could not say what they consider their gender to be, which may mean they are totally confused or just having a laugh, 0.10% identified as trans women, 0.10% as trans men, 0.06% as neither one thing or the other, and 0.04% as something else entirely (which we need not go into here).

Adding the trans persons together gives a total of around 96,000, of whom around 6,500 have a Gender Recognition Certificate (assuming that no-one who has one has died or emigrated since 2005). And the total number may, as Professor Stock has pointed out, be greatly inflated due to ideological capture of the ONS. It’s difficult to take any part of this process seriously, but no-one is laughing.

Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

No, Matt is not confusing transvestites with transexuals, he is clearly stating that transvestism is not sufficient grounds to categorise the perpertrator as transexual and that the latter requires serious surgery.

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

Thank you Brian. Too few people appreciate this.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

Fair point, but why then did the Gay activists in Stonewall add the TQ+ given the obvious downsides for vanilla Gays? Surely TQ+ could have been told to start their own campaigning organisation instead of piggybacking on a successful organisation and pushing an ideology that seems to be essentially anti-gay?

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

The “confusing” difference between transvestites and transsexuals is lost on me. High heels and sparkles, I suppose. Otherwise they’re pretty much the same.

Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

You have confused yourself, Brian – Matt makes no reference to the ‘gay community’, either explicit or implicit. If you are keen to take offence on behalf of gay men who like to dress as women, please go right ahead, but Matt was distinguishing between persons who have undergone surgery for the purpose of sex reassignment, aka gender-affirming surgery, and those who ‘identify as trans’ in some other way. It seems that Matt thinks these other ways shouldn’t be taken seriously – or at least not for the purposes of the Census. Of course, some alternative forms of ‘gender-affirming treatment’ are deadly serious. And then, for example, there is Thomas Gordon of Edinburgh, caught on CCTV drop-kicking a cat, who simply assumed the name ‘Rebecca’ for his recent court appearance, and immediately became a woman in the eyes of the Court and the Press. Others do nothing at all. A significant number cross-dress. And: the whole article is about the ‘trans census’.

Any attempt to count people in what can only be called a chaotic category was probably doomed from the start. Recently a colleague confided in me that both her 20-something son and daughter are ‘trans-questioning’, and one can only guess what they made of the Census question.

As it is, asked, “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?” 93.5% answered “Yes”, 6% wisely ignored the question, and 0.5% answered “No” – of these about half would not or could not say what they consider their gender to be, which may mean they are totally confused or just having a laugh, 0.10% identified as trans women, 0.10% as trans men, 0.06% as neither one thing or the other, and 0.04% as something else entirely (which we need not go into here).

Adding the trans persons together gives a total of around 96,000, of whom around 6,500 have a Gender Recognition Certificate (assuming that no-one who has one has died or emigrated since 2005). And the total number may, as Professor Stock has pointed out, be greatly inflated due to ideological capture of the ONS. It’s difficult to take any part of this process seriously, but no-one is laughing.

Last edited 1 year ago by Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
Wilma Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

You have confused yourself, Brian – Matt makes no reference to the ‘gay community’, either explicit or implicit. Old fella is code for p***s. If you are keen to take offence on behalf of gay men, please go right ahead, but Matt was distinguishing between persons who have undergone surgery for the purpose of sex reassignment, aka gender-affirming surgery, and those who ‘identify as trans’ in some other way. It seems that Matt thinks these other ways shouldn’t be taken seriously – or at least not for the purposes of the Census. Of course, some alternative forms of ‘gender-affirming treatment’ are deadly serious. And then, for example, there is Thomas Gordon of Edinburgh, caught on CCTV drop-kicking a cat, who simply assumed the name ‘Rebecca’ for his recent court appearance, and immediately became a woman in the eyes of the Court and the Press. Others do nothing at all. A significant number cross-dress. And: the whole article is about the ‘trans census’.

Any attempt to count people in what can only be called a chaotic category was probably doomed from the start. Recently a colleague confided in me that both her 20-something son and daughter are ‘trans-questioning’, and one can only guess what they made of the Census question.

As it is, asked, “Is the gender you identify with the same as your sex registered at birth?” 93.5% answered “Yes”, 6% wisely ignored the question, and 0.5% answered “No” – of these about half would not or could not say what they consider their gender to be, which may mean they are totally confused or just having a laugh, 0.10% identified as trans women, 0.10% as trans men, 0.06% as neither one thing or the other, and 0.04% as something else entirely (which we need not go into here).

Adding the trans persons together gives a total of around 96,000, of whom around 6,500 have a Gender Recognition Certificate (assuming that no-one who has one has died or emigrated since 2005). And the total number may, as Professor Stock has pointed out, be greatly inflated due to ideological capture of the ONS. It’s difficult to take any part of this process seriously, but no-one is laughing.

Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Delamere

No, Matt is not confusing transvestites with transexuals, he is clearly stating that transvestism is not sufficient grounds to categorise the perpertrator as transexual and that the latter requires serious surgery.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

You are missing the point. The purpose is to create a contentious, adversarial environment in which the actual terms of debate are so ambiguous, debased and confused as to be useless for purposes of reaching any sort of logical conclusion, in which accusation over-rides evidence and none can be sure of their position from one day to the next.

Read Koestler’s “Darkness at Noon”. Rubashov no longer understand the charges against him, let alone believes them to be true, but is indoctrinated to the point that he accepts unquestioningly that he is being sacrificed to the inscrutable purposes of the Party, and can no longer question the justice of this, far less its legality or desirability.

Last edited 1 year ago by ben arnulfssen
Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

I think that was the point I was making. If you really wanted to know how many people had amputated their m and two v, it would be easy to do. But the definition has been extended to the point that it is meaningless and covers anyone who ticks the box. And this redefinition was done, as you say, deliberately to obscure and overwhelm. The Darkness at Noon comparison is a good one. I found it a very troubling book when I was at university many years ago.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Yes, great book.
There are many others of course like “Captive Mind” by Milosz, 1984 and “Homage to Catalonia” by Orwell and Solzehitsin works.
Then poetry of Marina Cvetayeva, Osip Mandelstam and Ahmatova.
All should be required readings in Westerns schools and universities.
Instead miseducated youth reads rubbish by Hobsbawm, Derida, Facoult and Gramschi.
That is why we get woke morons being taken in by BLM, Climate Emergency etc.
I am old, so I hope not to see fall of the West.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

I think that was the point I was making. If you really wanted to know how many people had amputated their m and two v, it would be easy to do. But the definition has been extended to the point that it is meaningless and covers anyone who ticks the box. And this redefinition was done, as you say, deliberately to obscure and overwhelm. The Darkness at Noon comparison is a good one. I found it a very troubling book when I was at university many years ago.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Yes, great book.
There are many others of course like “Captive Mind” by Milosz, 1984 and “Homage to Catalonia” by Orwell and Solzehitsin works.
Then poetry of Marina Cvetayeva, Osip Mandelstam and Ahmatova.
All should be required readings in Westerns schools and universities.
Instead miseducated youth reads rubbish by Hobsbawm, Derida, Facoult and Gramschi.
That is why we get woke morons being taken in by BLM, Climate Emergency etc.
I am old, so I hope not to see fall of the West.

Vincent Wadsworth
Vincent Wadsworth
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

That would be a simply answer; and it would be good if this accounted for it everything, but alas there’s more to it that than removing and remolding body parts. Trans means changing, as well as changed. It used to take years to qualify for the trans op., you had to prove a commitment to it. It was a much monitored process. So many folk who are transsexual are in the a state of flux – waiting for the body parts to match as best they can with what they feel and identify with. It’s far far more than shopping for clothes to confirm a sexually identity.

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
1 year ago

There are many who claim to be transsexual who have no intention of having any surgery . They talk about their p***s being a woman’s p***s and often berate lesbians for excluding them from their love interest through bigotry

Alan Osband
Alan Osband
1 year ago

There are many who claim to be transsexual who have no intention of having any surgery . They talk about their p***s being a woman’s p***s and often berate lesbians for excluding them from their love interest through bigotry

Brian Delamere
Brian Delamere
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

You’re confusing transvestites with transsexuals. The LGBTQ+ activists have done untold damage to the gay community. Gay activists in the 80’s spent all their time schooling people that they were gay: Fully functional males, not paedos, not liking to dress up in women’s clothes, not a biological anomaly, not men who hate women or had some issues with their mothers. Just Gay

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

You are missing the point. The purpose is to create a contentious, adversarial environment in which the actual terms of debate are so ambiguous, debased and confused as to be useless for purposes of reaching any sort of logical conclusion, in which accusation over-rides evidence and none can be sure of their position from one day to the next.

Read Koestler’s “Darkness at Noon”. Rubashov no longer understand the charges against him, let alone believes them to be true, but is indoctrinated to the point that he accepts unquestioningly that he is being sacrificed to the inscrutable purposes of the Party, and can no longer question the justice of this, far less its legality or desirability.

Last edited 1 year ago by ben arnulfssen
Vincent Wadsworth
Vincent Wadsworth
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

That would be a simply answer; and it would be good if this accounted for it everything, but alas there’s more to it that than removing and remolding body parts. Trans means changing, as well as changed. It used to take years to qualify for the trans op., you had to prove a commitment to it. It was a much monitored process. So many folk who are transsexual are in the a state of flux – waiting for the body parts to match as best they can with what they feel and identify with. It’s far far more than shopping for clothes to confirm a sexually identity.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

Surely if you want to count transsexuals, you can count the number of sex-change operations conducted each year. I bet the answer is less than 1000.

If you like to wear women’s clobber but want to keep the old fella, you shouldn’t count in the stats.

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Richard Parker
Richard Parker
1 year ago

“ Mitchell received a 12-month community order including 20 rehabilitation days, 150 hours’ unpaid work, and a fine of £1,500”

Never dreamed I would see such a reaction to an opinion expressed in England, for heaven’s sake. North Korea, certainly. The Soviet Union of my childhood nightmares, sure. But England? Why is simply accepted? How did we reach this point?
(Mods, why was this held up? Very disappointing.)

Last edited 1 year ago by Richard Parker
Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Parker

Well quite – what “crime” was he said to have committed? Probably one of the discretionary “incitement” offenses to which you can now slap on a “hate” label and throw the book at the hapless tweeter.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

I suggest everyone gets on Bookface an posts that the drag queen in question was “grooming children” and that the parents of attendees “clearly have serious issues and should have their devices checked”

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago

I did exactly this on this page about two minutes before reading your comment.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

It appears to have been deleted, so I have just reinstated it.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

It appears to have been deleted, so I have just reinstated it.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago

I did exactly this on this page about two minutes before reading your comment.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

I suggest everyone gets on Bookface an posts that the drag queen in question was “grooming children” and that the parents of attendees “clearly have serious issues and should have their devices checked”

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Parker

What concerns me here, is total lack of legal assistance for people in his situation.
Maybe if Lord Sumption was on his case the result would be different?
Or we would have some reporting in the press.
UK looks more like late day communism.
You will not be killed anymore for expressing “wrong” opinions but you would loose job etc…

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Parker

Well quite – what “crime” was he said to have committed? Probably one of the discretionary “incitement” offenses to which you can now slap on a “hate” label and throw the book at the hapless tweeter.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Parker

What concerns me here, is total lack of legal assistance for people in his situation.
Maybe if Lord Sumption was on his case the result would be different?
Or we would have some reporting in the press.
UK looks more like late day communism.
You will not be killed anymore for expressing “wrong” opinions but you would loose job etc…

Richard Parker
Richard Parker
1 year ago

“ Mitchell received a 12-month community order including 20 rehabilitation days, 150 hours’ unpaid work, and a fine of £1,500”

Never dreamed I would see such a reaction to an opinion expressed in England, for heaven’s sake. North Korea, certainly. The Soviet Union of my childhood nightmares, sure. But England? Why is simply accepted? How did we reach this point?
(Mods, why was this held up? Very disappointing.)

Last edited 1 year ago by Richard Parker
Ian Johnston
Ian Johnston
1 year ago

First Mary Harrington. Now Kathleen Stock.
Unherd has just the best writers out there.

m_dunec
m_dunec
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Johnston

I’d include Julie Bindel and agree – it seems Unherd have some of the most fearless and talented writers of our time, and we need and appreciate every single word!

Last edited 1 year ago by m_dunec
Kathryn Ecclestone
Kathryn Ecclestone
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Johnston

Kathleen Stock is a SUPERB writer. Fearless, lucid and funny – and always original

Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago

Kathleen spent the majority of her life stirring up the sort of ‘liberal-progressive’ problems she now riles against – until the so-called progessives’ continous ‘progress’ left her behind and they came looking for her.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago

Yes, she is great writer but your point stands.
She was part of revolution when it was in Danton stage (or Bucharin in case of Soviet state) but is not happy now when we get to Robespierre and Stalin purges of mid and late 30s.
I somehow doubt that she will appreciate that she is not in prison or shot by her former comrades…
Thanks to misogynist state which still protects her…

Last edited 1 year ago by Andrew F
Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago

Yes, she is great writer but your point stands.
She was part of revolution when it was in Danton stage (or Bucharin in case of Soviet state) but is not happy now when we get to Robespierre and Stalin purges of mid and late 30s.
I somehow doubt that she will appreciate that she is not in prison or shot by her former comrades…
Thanks to misogynist state which still protects her…

Last edited 1 year ago by Andrew F
Rob Mcneill-wilson
Rob Mcneill-wilson
1 year ago

Kathleen spent the majority of her life stirring up the sort of ‘liberal-progressive’ problems she now riles against – until the so-called progessives’ continous ‘progress’ left her behind and they came looking for her.

m_dunec
m_dunec
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Johnston

I’d include Julie Bindel and agree – it seems Unherd have some of the most fearless and talented writers of our time, and we need and appreciate every single word!

Last edited 1 year ago by m_dunec
Kathryn Ecclestone
Kathryn Ecclestone
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Johnston

Kathleen Stock is a SUPERB writer. Fearless, lucid and funny – and always original

Ian Johnston
Ian Johnston
1 year ago

First Mary Harrington. Now Kathleen Stock.
Unherd has just the best writers out there.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

I am a West Ham fan and I done speak the lingo good enough. My stock response to the census is to assume that the New Elite (The elite that Professor Stock believes does not exist, and that she wouldn’t be a member of, even if it did) will use the results to stiff me – So I lie. Sometimes the simple explanations are the best.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Is that ‘tattooed oaf’ in the caption photo wearing West Ham or Aston Villa?

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago

West Ham (check the badge on the shirt). Top kit. Top fans. Used to have one of the best old grounds in the country.
Probably a really nice guy for all we know. Is the tattoo Chinese or Japanese ?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thank you! Photo definition on my tiny i-pad is rather poor.
I have no doubt he is a splendid chap, ‘salt of the earth’ etc, however he does appear to be in ‘oaf mode’, which is not meant as a criticism, but merely as an observation.

If someone’ could translate the tattoos it would be interesting.

I also note no ‘invaders’ seem to present in the exuberant crowd, which says something for a Club buried deep in the bowels of East London.

Harry Phillips
Harry Phillips
1 year ago

They look Chinese.
The individual characters on his right arm – from top to bottom – seem to be friendship, love, strength, belief (?), laughter, and dreams. Not sure if they combine to one word.
No idea about his left arm.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

No, Palestinian.. ” The Hamas” as they are known at Upton Park!

james goater
james goater
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Agreed, Chinese. The character for “belief” could also be read as “trust”. His left arm, at a guess, has Taiwanese versions of Chinese characters since the mainland has been simplifying the more complex pictograms since the days of Mao. Off topic, sorry.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Thank you!

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Yeah. You gotta watch out for his left.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

My Chinese friend tells me that the left arm is a Chinese girl’s name – Shu Lee – presumably our hero’s current or former girlfriend who persuaded him to get the tattoos. The two outer characters are simplified script; the middle one complex.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

No, Palestinian.. ” The Hamas” as they are known at Upton Park!

james goater
james goater
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Agreed, Chinese. The character for “belief” could also be read as “trust”. His left arm, at a guess, has Taiwanese versions of Chinese characters since the mainland has been simplifying the more complex pictograms since the days of Mao. Off topic, sorry.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Thank you!

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

Yeah. You gotta watch out for his left.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago
Reply to  Harry Phillips

My Chinese friend tells me that the left arm is a Chinese girl’s name – Shu Lee – presumably our hero’s current or former girlfriend who persuaded him to get the tattoos. The two outer characters are simplified script; the middle one complex.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago

Well, invaders are not really into football.
They are into cricket.
Always failing Norman Tebitt test…

Harry Phillips
Harry Phillips
1 year ago

They look Chinese.
The individual characters on his right arm – from top to bottom – seem to be friendship, love, strength, belief (?), laughter, and dreams. Not sure if they combine to one word.
No idea about his left arm.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago

Well, invaders are not really into football.
They are into cricket.
Always failing Norman Tebitt test…

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thank you! Photo definition on my tiny i-pad is rather poor.
I have no doubt he is a splendid chap, ‘salt of the earth’ etc, however he does appear to be in ‘oaf mode’, which is not meant as a criticism, but merely as an observation.

If someone’ could translate the tattoos it would be interesting.

I also note no ‘invaders’ seem to present in the exuberant crowd, which says something for a Club buried deep in the bowels of East London.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

West Ham. We do have an exuberant wing. Actually, the obvious give-away, even without the badge, is the astonishment on his face – We have won a match?!

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

One really must congratulate Unherd for digging out this photo to head up a Kathleen Stock article on the West Ham supporting trans community.
Pictures, words, thousands, comes to mind.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Was it this year.
Chelsea supporters, so not much to cheer either…

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

One really must congratulate Unherd for digging out this photo to head up a Kathleen Stock article on the West Ham supporting trans community.
Pictures, words, thousands, comes to mind.

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Was it this year.
Chelsea supporters, so not much to cheer either…

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago

West Ham (check the badge on the shirt). Top kit. Top fans. Used to have one of the best old grounds in the country.
Probably a really nice guy for all we know. Is the tattoo Chinese or Japanese ?

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

West Ham. We do have an exuberant wing. Actually, the obvious give-away, even without the badge, is the astonishment on his face – We have won a match?!

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Very useful and adult behaviour/

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Are you being a tad sarky Linda? What do you suggest that I do – eat my greens like a good little boy?

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Are you being a tad sarky Linda? What do you suggest that I do – eat my greens like a good little boy?

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Standen, Bond, Burkett, Bovingdon, Brown, Moore, Brabrook, Boyce, Byrne, Hurst, Sissons… all of my heart… remember ’64

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

OK, but why would you declare for pseudo women side?
Surely, you are giving ammunition to all the nutters who claim that many people are gender fluid.
My response to them would be:
So you are claiming to be a women?
Well, put your b**ls in this vice then…

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Is that ‘tattooed oaf’ in the caption photo wearing West Ham or Aston Villa?

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Very useful and adult behaviour/

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Standen, Bond, Burkett, Bovingdon, Brown, Moore, Brabrook, Boyce, Byrne, Hurst, Sissons… all of my heart… remember ’64

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

OK, but why would you declare for pseudo women side?
Surely, you are giving ammunition to all the nutters who claim that many people are gender fluid.
My response to them would be:
So you are claiming to be a women?
Well, put your b**ls in this vice then…

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

I am a West Ham fan and I done speak the lingo good enough. My stock response to the census is to assume that the New Elite (The elite that Professor Stock believes does not exist, and that she wouldn’t be a member of, even if it did) will use the results to stiff me – So I lie. Sometimes the simple explanations are the best.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

This fad or social contagion or whatever it is that emotionally fragile, often autistic children have embraced has gone on far too long. You think this sh*t would be tolerated in African countries? The Middle East? Poland? Singapore? China? The fact that we get articles every other day about this illustrates just how ludicrously tolerant of aberration we’ve become. Douglas Murray was absolutely correct when he cited some silly junior editor who stamped her little foot about publishing a J.K. Rowling book because one of her friends was “non-binary” (paraphrasing): “Why didn’t the people in charge say ‘We don’t care. Shut up’”.
I hope UnHerd will take his advice.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago

Precisely, ‘we’ are rapidly becoming a bunch of worthless bed wetting spastics. This has to STOP…….NOW!

Last edited 1 year ago by Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago

Precisely, ‘we’ are rapidly becoming a bunch of worthless bed wetting spastics. This has to STOP…….NOW!

Last edited 1 year ago by Charles Stanhope
Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

This fad or social contagion or whatever it is that emotionally fragile, often autistic children have embraced has gone on far too long. You think this sh*t would be tolerated in African countries? The Middle East? Poland? Singapore? China? The fact that we get articles every other day about this illustrates just how ludicrously tolerant of aberration we’ve become. Douglas Murray was absolutely correct when he cited some silly junior editor who stamped her little foot about publishing a J.K. Rowling book because one of her friends was “non-binary” (paraphrasing): “Why didn’t the people in charge say ‘We don’t care. Shut up’”.
I hope UnHerd will take his advice.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago

In answer to Paul Goodman, it took Rishi Sunak well over a minute to say that he believed in biological sex, “as a general, as a general, as a general kind of operating principle.” But he will do nothing about even that. The entire public sector and its vast network of contractors have come to treat gender self-identification as already the law entirely since 2015. Go back to 2010, and the concept itself was unheard of.

All of the right-wing media outlets are in internal turmoil over this issue, although none more so than the Daily Telegraph. Its contributors’ columns have rarely borne any resemblance to their lifestyles, and the rising stars, the Conservative MPs and Ministers of the future, have been told in no uncertain terms that their careers inside the Conservative Party were being at least potentially frustrated by the line against gender self-identification. Accordingly, a shift is already discernible, and will soon enough be complete.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Gender-bending like this is a psychological attack on the peoples of the West. Those who equivocate about biological terms like ‘man’ and ‘woman’ know full well what they are doing. It is an extreme hate movement disguised as kindness.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Who really cares one way or the other!
I doubt anybody in say, Middleton-in-Teesdale gives a toss about this nonsense!

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago

You’re right in that they probably don’t care, but the problem starts to arise when all the real-world effects are foisted upon them – when their daughters have to compete against boys/men in sport, when their wives have to share hospital wards with men etc. It’s not just the trans issue that is going to cause problems down the line, when the meanings of every-day words are changed by fiat then people can run into legal problems and could end up in prison, and if you are a woman you will have to share that prison with a (possibly predatory) man. I would like to close my eyes, put my fingers in my ears and hum loudly, but none of this is going away without some sort of opposition, it’s just that I don’t know how to effectively oppose, other than by supporting people like Inaya Folarin Iman, Dr Wanjiru Njoya, Alka Sehgal Cuthbert, and organisations like The Equiano Project, Don’t divide Us, Sex Matters.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Like you, I lived through the 60’s when there was plenty of ‘alternative nonsense’ being bandied around.
Eventually ‘they’ grew up and it passed. I trust the same will happen again.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Indeed we did grow out of it. The difference was that, even then, we knew it was nonsense. Just look at the swivel-eyed expression on the faces of the trans kids – They believe.

Peter Lee
Peter Lee
1 year ago

Not sure one can grow out of genital mutilation!

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Lee

Gender mutilation should be a capital offence, no ifs, no buts!

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Lee

Gender mutilation should be a capital offence, no ifs, no buts!

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Indeed we did grow out of it. The difference was that, even then, we knew it was nonsense. Just look at the swivel-eyed expression on the faces of the trans kids – They believe.

Peter Lee
Peter Lee
1 year ago

Not sure one can grow out of genital mutilation!

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

The best form of opposition is to laugh in their faces.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Yessss!!!!

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Yessss!!!!

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
1 year ago

Exactly how I feel. We must support the objectors.

michael stanwick
michael stanwick
1 year ago

A very good series of points.
I think effective opposition is to engage in any activity that you are capable of. Like you, I support those you mention and also try to get the word out there in a reasoned manner, in as many forums that deal with this issue. I have tried to engage with true believer activists but found the communication unproductive – there was no common agreement regarding rules of discourse.
One person that I do support is James Lindsay. He is being very effective in meeting with politicians both in the US and in Europe and presenting a wide ranging analysis of what is going on. For example, he recently spoke, with Frank Furedi, at a European Parliament conference. He gave what I think is a most clear breakdown of the ideology and activism rationale.
His speech – and Furedi’s – can be found of the YouTube channel ‘Paul Boonefaes’.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Like you, I lived through the 60’s when there was plenty of ‘alternative nonsense’ being bandied around.
Eventually ‘they’ grew up and it passed. I trust the same will happen again.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

The best form of opposition is to laugh in their faces.

Allie McBeth
Allie McBeth
1 year ago

Exactly how I feel. We must support the objectors.

michael stanwick
michael stanwick
1 year ago

A very good series of points.
I think effective opposition is to engage in any activity that you are capable of. Like you, I support those you mention and also try to get the word out there in a reasoned manner, in as many forums that deal with this issue. I have tried to engage with true believer activists but found the communication unproductive – there was no common agreement regarding rules of discourse.
One person that I do support is James Lindsay. He is being very effective in meeting with politicians both in the US and in Europe and presenting a wide ranging analysis of what is going on. For example, he recently spoke, with Frank Furedi, at a European Parliament conference. He gave what I think is a most clear breakdown of the ideology and activism rationale.
His speech – and Furedi’s – can be found of the YouTube channel ‘Paul Boonefaes’.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

Lower Middleton on Pang?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

No, just to the north of Barnard Castle. *

(* scene of that wretch Dom’ Cummings’s “eyesight test”.)

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

No, just to the north of Barnard Castle. *

(* scene of that wretch Dom’ Cummings’s “eyesight test”.)

Phil Rees
Phil Rees
1 year ago

Oh yes? Wait until the females there go in for a cervical smear and find its done by a man wearing a dress. You’ll see then just how quickly this will become a real polling issue, just as Ms Sturgeon did.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Phil Rees

Or they find out the same sex care specified for their disabled daughter is now provided by a bloke called Barbie – including changing her menstrual products etc.
Or their elderly mother on her single sex hospital ward is terrified of the man visibly masturbating in the next bed.

S Wilkinson
S Wilkinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Phil Rees

Or they find out the same sex care specified for their disabled daughter is now provided by a bloke called Barbie – including changing her menstrual products etc.
Or their elderly mother on her single sex hospital ward is terrified of the man visibly masturbating in the next bed.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago

You’re right in that they probably don’t care, but the problem starts to arise when all the real-world effects are foisted upon them – when their daughters have to compete against boys/men in sport, when their wives have to share hospital wards with men etc. It’s not just the trans issue that is going to cause problems down the line, when the meanings of every-day words are changed by fiat then people can run into legal problems and could end up in prison, and if you are a woman you will have to share that prison with a (possibly predatory) man. I would like to close my eyes, put my fingers in my ears and hum loudly, but none of this is going away without some sort of opposition, it’s just that I don’t know how to effectively oppose, other than by supporting people like Inaya Folarin Iman, Dr Wanjiru Njoya, Alka Sehgal Cuthbert, and organisations like The Equiano Project, Don’t divide Us, Sex Matters.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

Lower Middleton on Pang?

Phil Rees
Phil Rees
1 year ago

Oh yes? Wait until the females there go in for a cervical smear and find its done by a man wearing a dress. You’ll see then just how quickly this will become a real polling issue, just as Ms Sturgeon did.

AL Crowe
AL Crowe
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

There’s an ever widening gap between the political and journalist classes, and the rest of the population, and I think that gender ideology demonstrates this most starkly. Even as the Daily Mail is reporting on varied trans identifying individuals, even when they are criminals, their writers are bending over backwards to avoid “misgendering”, yet the commentariat are increasingly rejecting this approach, and consistently “misgendering” by daring to ignore all this nonsense in favour of basic biological reality.

Similar is being seen in the comments here of course, but the commentariat of here, and of the Mail are mostly from very different sections of the populace. The Guardianesque affirmative approach is being increasingly ridiculed and isolated, and even many of the activist types are stepping back from it, as the purity cycle completes another cycle, and alienates more and more bar those already neck deep, or young or silly enough to place being on trend above any engagement of their critical faculties.

This schism cannot continue to widen without severe repercussions on society, and I have a hunch that it is the political and journalist classes who will have to fold to the majority as an act of self preservation, no matter what the shadowy influences pulling the reins on this psychological warfare have to say on the matter.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago
Reply to  AL Crowe

Whither Suzanne Moore? She and her sisters have a point that the views of young men are given priority over those of mature women. The question is which young men. In the early Corbyn years, I remember very young, very left-wing men who were totally sound on this and on Brexit, just as Jeremy Corbyn’s own very old friends around Counterfire and the Morning Star were and are. They were no crypto-Greens, either. But Corbyn chose whoever it was that he chose instead, so here we are. And behind that was what is also behind the right-wing media’s emerging choice of sides on, mark my words, all three of those matters. The old, old favourite. Class.

The best that can be said for The Guardian is that, unlike on the right-wing papers, its writers do at least believe what they are saying. If you wanted a daily, print newspaper that supported Brexit, opposed gender self-identification, and was sceptical of Greenery, or even that managed to be any one of those things, then you will always have the Morning Star. Give it two years, and you will have nothing else. It would be less than a year, if the General Election were sooner. Moore might become a columnist on the Morning Star, having started out on Marxism Today, the voice of the other side of the split between Eurocommunists and those who had continued to insist on the priority of class.

It was in Marxism Today that Moore’s mentor, the late Professor Stuart Hall, first wrote of “Thatcherism”, and this is where Thatcherism has inevitably ended up. Margaret Thatcher was last depicted on British television, for the first time in quite a while, in December’s Prince Andrew: The Musical, the title of which spoke for itself, and in which she was played by one Baga Chipz, a drag queen. Well, of course. Gender self-identification is the inexorable logic of the self-made man or the self-made woman, and a figure comparable to Thatcher, emerging in the Britain of the 2020s, would be assumed to be a transwoman, just as Thatcher herself emerged in the Britain of everything from Danny La Rue and D**k Emery to David Bowie and The Rocky Horror Show. In a generation’s time, everyone will be saying out loud that Tony Blair had always been as androgynous as Thatcher was. Leo Abse wrote eye-opening books on both of them.

Last edited 1 year ago by David Lindsay
Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Surely you don’t believe in any of this tosh?

Do you remember the spectacular Belah Viaduct in the high days of steam? Or perhaps a stroll up glorious Buttertubs Pass?
Somethings have value, but sadly most don’t.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Surely you don’t believe in any of this tosh?

Do you remember the spectacular Belah Viaduct in the high days of steam? Or perhaps a stroll up glorious Buttertubs Pass?
Somethings have value, but sadly most don’t.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  AL Crowe

Trying to force us to use “they” as a singular pronoun was just a bridge too far for their activist plans. It’s clumsy and confusing and just doesn’t work. It was their “straw that broke the camel’s back”; the ruin of all their activism. Ten years from now no one will even remember.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago
Reply to  AL Crowe

Whither Suzanne Moore? She and her sisters have a point that the views of young men are given priority over those of mature women. The question is which young men. In the early Corbyn years, I remember very young, very left-wing men who were totally sound on this and on Brexit, just as Jeremy Corbyn’s own very old friends around Counterfire and the Morning Star were and are. They were no crypto-Greens, either. But Corbyn chose whoever it was that he chose instead, so here we are. And behind that was what is also behind the right-wing media’s emerging choice of sides on, mark my words, all three of those matters. The old, old favourite. Class.

The best that can be said for The Guardian is that, unlike on the right-wing papers, its writers do at least believe what they are saying. If you wanted a daily, print newspaper that supported Brexit, opposed gender self-identification, and was sceptical of Greenery, or even that managed to be any one of those things, then you will always have the Morning Star. Give it two years, and you will have nothing else. It would be less than a year, if the General Election were sooner. Moore might become a columnist on the Morning Star, having started out on Marxism Today, the voice of the other side of the split between Eurocommunists and those who had continued to insist on the priority of class.

It was in Marxism Today that Moore’s mentor, the late Professor Stuart Hall, first wrote of “Thatcherism”, and this is where Thatcherism has inevitably ended up. Margaret Thatcher was last depicted on British television, for the first time in quite a while, in December’s Prince Andrew: The Musical, the title of which spoke for itself, and in which she was played by one Baga Chipz, a drag queen. Well, of course. Gender self-identification is the inexorable logic of the self-made man or the self-made woman, and a figure comparable to Thatcher, emerging in the Britain of the 2020s, would be assumed to be a transwoman, just as Thatcher herself emerged in the Britain of everything from Danny La Rue and D**k Emery to David Bowie and The Rocky Horror Show. In a generation’s time, everyone will be saying out loud that Tony Blair had always been as androgynous as Thatcher was. Leo Abse wrote eye-opening books on both of them.

Last edited 1 year ago by David Lindsay
laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 year ago
Reply to  AL Crowe

Trying to force us to use “they” as a singular pronoun was just a bridge too far for their activist plans. It’s clumsy and confusing and just doesn’t work. It was their “straw that broke the camel’s back”; the ruin of all their activism. Ten years from now no one will even remember.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Gender-bending like this is a psychological attack on the peoples of the West. Those who equivocate about biological terms like ‘man’ and ‘woman’ know full well what they are doing. It is an extreme hate movement disguised as kindness.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

Who really cares one way or the other!
I doubt anybody in say, Middleton-in-Teesdale gives a toss about this nonsense!

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
AL Crowe
AL Crowe
1 year ago
Reply to  David Lindsay

There’s an ever widening gap between the political and journalist classes, and the rest of the population, and I think that gender ideology demonstrates this most starkly. Even as the Daily Mail is reporting on varied trans identifying individuals, even when they are criminals, their writers are bending over backwards to avoid “misgendering”, yet the commentariat are increasingly rejecting this approach, and consistently “misgendering” by daring to ignore all this nonsense in favour of basic biological reality.

Similar is being seen in the comments here of course, but the commentariat of here, and of the Mail are mostly from very different sections of the populace. The Guardianesque affirmative approach is being increasingly ridiculed and isolated, and even many of the activist types are stepping back from it, as the purity cycle completes another cycle, and alienates more and more bar those already neck deep, or young or silly enough to place being on trend above any engagement of their critical faculties.

This schism cannot continue to widen without severe repercussions on society, and I have a hunch that it is the political and journalist classes who will have to fold to the majority as an act of self preservation, no matter what the shadowy influences pulling the reins on this psychological warfare have to say on the matter.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago

In answer to Paul Goodman, it took Rishi Sunak well over a minute to say that he believed in biological sex, “as a general, as a general, as a general kind of operating principle.” But he will do nothing about even that. The entire public sector and its vast network of contractors have come to treat gender self-identification as already the law entirely since 2015. Go back to 2010, and the concept itself was unheard of.

All of the right-wing media outlets are in internal turmoil over this issue, although none more so than the Daily Telegraph. Its contributors’ columns have rarely borne any resemblance to their lifestyles, and the rising stars, the Conservative MPs and Ministers of the future, have been told in no uncertain terms that their careers inside the Conservative Party were being at least potentially frustrated by the line against gender self-identification. Accordingly, a shift is already discernible, and will soon enough be complete.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago

A lot of trans answers were probably of the sort of snook cocking that produced 390,000 followers of the Jedi religion in the 2001 Census in England and Wales.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

If that’s so, then you can see the problems that arise from being facitious on the census forms.

AL Crowe
AL Crowe
1 year ago

It’s why the census has never really been fit for purpose, and so error laden that everything it claims needs to be taken with a large pinch of salt.

I’ve done a lot of historical research using census data, and people have consistently lied about their age, their marital status, etc, for every single census that has ever been conducted.

In the present, we don’t really have much social incentive for lying about marital status, and it’s harder to lie about age in the digital era, but things like religion and gender identity, where the only evidence is a self-declaration, and a multitude of reasons for people to lie, and you see the same thing happening.

All that has changed is what people lie about on the forms.

Doug Pingel
Doug Pingel
1 year ago

What makes you think that we followers of THE JEDI were being facetious?

AL Crowe
AL Crowe
1 year ago

It’s why the census has never really been fit for purpose, and so error laden that everything it claims needs to be taken with a large pinch of salt.

I’ve done a lot of historical research using census data, and people have consistently lied about their age, their marital status, etc, for every single census that has ever been conducted.

In the present, we don’t really have much social incentive for lying about marital status, and it’s harder to lie about age in the digital era, but things like religion and gender identity, where the only evidence is a self-declaration, and a multitude of reasons for people to lie, and you see the same thing happening.

All that has changed is what people lie about on the forms.

Doug Pingel
Doug Pingel
1 year ago

What makes you think that we followers of THE JEDI were being facetious?

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Snook cocking?
Isn’t that what the trans community get up to in lieu of intercourse?

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

I suspect snook cocking was the mildest annoyance Kathleen Stock had to put up with from that community at Sussex. What they indulge in in private I think should remain private if it involves consenting adults and doesn’t increase trips to A&E.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jeremy Bray
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Brilliant!!!!

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

I suspect snook cocking was the mildest annoyance Kathleen Stock had to put up with from that community at Sussex. What they indulge in in private I think should remain private if it involves consenting adults and doesn’t increase trips to A&E.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jeremy Bray
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Brilliant!!!!

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

If that’s so, then you can see the problems that arise from being facitious on the census forms.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Snook cocking?
Isn’t that what the trans community get up to in lieu of intercourse?

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Murray
Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 year ago

A lot of trans answers were probably of the sort of snook cocking that produced 390,000 followers of the Jedi religion in the 2001 Census in England and Wales.

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago

A phenomenon described well by Orwell in 1984 – NewSpeak – a language specifically designed to prevent you discussing – and ultimately even thinking double plus bad things.
Its been a prime tactic of the left for as long as I can remember.

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago

A phenomenon described well by Orwell in 1984 – NewSpeak – a language specifically designed to prevent you discussing – and ultimately even thinking double plus bad things.
Its been a prime tactic of the left for as long as I can remember.

Steven Carr
Steven Carr
1 year ago

You’re not allowed to say ‘flashers’ any more.
You have to say ‘Participants in Channel 4 programmes’.

Political correctness gone mad!

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Steven Carr

Congratulations. You win today’s internet genius comment prize. Please accept an upvote with my compliments.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Steven Carr

Congratulations. You win today’s internet genius comment prize. Please accept an upvote with my compliments.

Steven Carr
Steven Carr
1 year ago

You’re not allowed to say ‘flashers’ any more.
You have to say ‘Participants in Channel 4 programmes’.

Political correctness gone mad!

Tom Lewis
Tom Lewis
1 year ago

What PERVERTED times we live in !

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Lewis

Sadly nothing like Ancient Rome in its heyday.

Last edited 1 year ago by Charles Stanhope
Thomas Bengtsson
Thomas Bengtsson
1 year ago

True, and look what happened to it.

Thomas Bengtsson
Thomas Bengtsson
1 year ago

True, and look what happened to it.

Charles Stanhope
Charles Stanhope
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Lewis

Sadly nothing like Ancient Rome in its heyday.

Last edited 1 year ago by Charles Stanhope
Tom Lewis
Tom Lewis
1 year ago

What PERVERTED times we live in !

andy young
andy young
1 year ago

The reason for the complete mess we now find ourselves in is the abandonment of objective reality for the idea that the world is entirely self created, i.e. solipsism. It is a deep & fundamental philosophical change brought about by a (to my mind) incorrect interpretation of quantum mechanics seized on by French philosophers as a means to defeat British empiricism & pragmatism.
Philosophy is ignored & dismissed as something nebulous & irrelevant by most people, but if you don’t understand the beliefs underpinning your life then basically you’re stuffed. Unless somebody gets hold of the intellectual malaise affecting our leaders & institutions, academic & otherwise, then we’re off to Hell in a Handcart.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

In my opinion, we’re there already.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

You mean those oikophobes such as Derrida, Foucault, Lacan & Co?
Weren’t our own, Laski, Miliband Hobsbawm & Co just as bad?

Either way if this continues people will soon start chanting “Come back Adolph, all is forgiven “. We have been warned.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

To get a solid grip all one has to do is read Aristotle, then a bit if Aquinas. Ignore all post-enlightenment philosophers.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

In my opinion, we’re there already.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

You mean those oikophobes such as Derrida, Foucault, Lacan & Co?
Weren’t our own, Laski, Miliband Hobsbawm & Co just as bad?

Either way if this continues people will soon start chanting “Come back Adolph, all is forgiven “. We have been warned.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  andy young

To get a solid grip all one has to do is read Aristotle, then a bit if Aquinas. Ignore all post-enlightenment philosophers.

andy young
andy young
1 year ago

The reason for the complete mess we now find ourselves in is the abandonment of objective reality for the idea that the world is entirely self created, i.e. solipsism. It is a deep & fundamental philosophical change brought about by a (to my mind) incorrect interpretation of quantum mechanics seized on by French philosophers as a means to defeat British empiricism & pragmatism.
Philosophy is ignored & dismissed as something nebulous & irrelevant by most people, but if you don’t understand the beliefs underpinning your life then basically you’re stuffed. Unless somebody gets hold of the intellectual malaise affecting our leaders & institutions, academic & otherwise, then we’re off to Hell in a Handcart.

MJ Reid
MJ Reid
1 year ago

The Census has gone down the road of being written by policy people who use language as a code for other policy people! Having been one such person in a former life but for a charity not a public body, my head was flat from constantly saying “if you want people to take part, write everything in plain language that they will understand. When you strangle the language, you strangle involvement.” I got strange looks and whispers behind hands…

The trans question is policy speak. Don’t know about the English Census, but in Scotland, it was optional. Most people ignored it!

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  MJ Reid

Yep, I refused to answer. Also, the census data for Scotland and the rest of the UK is now a year apart and un-interoperable. Another gold-star furq up by Sturgeon.

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  MJ Reid

Yep, I refused to answer. Also, the census data for Scotland and the rest of the UK is now a year apart and un-interoperable. Another gold-star furq up by Sturgeon.

MJ Reid
MJ Reid
1 year ago

The Census has gone down the road of being written by policy people who use language as a code for other policy people! Having been one such person in a former life but for a charity not a public body, my head was flat from constantly saying “if you want people to take part, write everything in plain language that they will understand. When you strangle the language, you strangle involvement.” I got strange looks and whispers behind hands…

The trans question is policy speak. Don’t know about the English Census, but in Scotland, it was optional. Most people ignored it!

Martin Goodfellow
Martin Goodfellow
1 year ago

I do wish UnHerd would filter out comments that do not address the ideas presented in its articles. Many of those for this item are merely reactions to others’ off-topic remarks. For people who merely want to interact online there are other platforms available.
Kathleen Stock has identified a very serious and poisonous problem, and outlined how its perpetrators weasel their ideas into prominence by using neologisms that appeal to uncritical users. Once their terminologies become everyday usage, it is difficult to disarm them. The mainstream press, notably The Guardian, but others, too, eagerly use this ‘wokist’ language for the public to absorb–and absorb it they do. Terms such as ‘gender’ are, as Kathleen points out, vague in meaning, but pass unquestioning readers by with ease. Politicians, too, use them even when drawing up government documents. Words such as ‘cisgender’, and ‘heteronormative’, to name but two, are examples I’ve come across in print recently, as if they were not manipulative language.
Kathleen’s idea of exempting children and the elderly (the latter is not an insulting term) from blame for using ‘unauthorised’ language is a good one, but does not go far enough: we, all of us, need to be on guard and militant against the language vandals, calling them out, just as they do presumptiously to anyone who criticises them–before it’s too late.

Martin Goodfellow
Martin Goodfellow
1 year ago

I do wish UnHerd would filter out comments that do not address the ideas presented in its articles. Many of those for this item are merely reactions to others’ off-topic remarks. For people who merely want to interact online there are other platforms available.
Kathleen Stock has identified a very serious and poisonous problem, and outlined how its perpetrators weasel their ideas into prominence by using neologisms that appeal to uncritical users. Once their terminologies become everyday usage, it is difficult to disarm them. The mainstream press, notably The Guardian, but others, too, eagerly use this ‘wokist’ language for the public to absorb–and absorb it they do. Terms such as ‘gender’ are, as Kathleen points out, vague in meaning, but pass unquestioning readers by with ease. Politicians, too, use them even when drawing up government documents. Words such as ‘cisgender’, and ‘heteronormative’, to name but two, are examples I’ve come across in print recently, as if they were not manipulative language.
Kathleen’s idea of exempting children and the elderly (the latter is not an insulting term) from blame for using ‘unauthorised’ language is a good one, but does not go far enough: we, all of us, need to be on guard and militant against the language vandals, calling them out, just as they do presumptiously to anyone who criticises them–before it’s too late.

R Poesje
R Poesje
1 year ago

One point this misses is that many recent immigrants completed the census in other languages.
Many Bethnal Green residents, for instance, completed the census in Bengali. Would the distinction between ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ be completely clear to them, both linguistically and culturally?

R Poesje
R Poesje
1 year ago

One point this misses is that many recent immigrants completed the census in other languages.
Many Bethnal Green residents, for instance, completed the census in Bengali. Would the distinction between ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ be completely clear to them, both linguistically and culturally?

jpeter.sanderson
jpeter.sanderson
1 year ago

I understand the error of non-native speakers is thought to be that they misunderstood the question, ticked the box saying their gender identity was different, then re-wrote their biological sex in the gender identity box. Apparently, if somebody writes the word ‘man’ in that particular box, the census staff will include it in the ‘trans-man’ category – even if it is the same as their declared sex.
But beyond that, if you don’t have a gender identity, but merely have a biological sex, then the gender question is very vexing to answer. It is plainly a loaded question because it is presupposing people must have a gender identity at all, when this is a controversial ideological concept that was only formulated yesterday.
There are three ways to handle the question if you identify it as a loaded question:
1) Tut, and then just answer ‘yes’, i.e. that there is no difference between your gender identity and your sex.
2) Refuse to answer the question, as it is voluntary. Presumably some of the 6% who refused to answer fall in this category.
3) Answer ‘no’ and, for the follow-up question asking what is your gender identity, write nothing (0.24% did this), or explicitly write “none”. ONS has not given a full breakdown, but 0.04% answered ‘no’ to the first question and then gave an answer other than trans / non-binary for the follow-up question). So some of this 0.04% may well include people who wrote “none”.
This means that there is an unknown proportion of 6.28% of respondents who may have treated it as a loaded question and answered in a non-conformist manner.

Last edited 1 year ago by jpeter.sanderson
jpeter.sanderson
jpeter.sanderson
1 year ago

I understand the error of non-native speakers is thought to be that they misunderstood the question, ticked the box saying their gender identity was different, then re-wrote their biological sex in the gender identity box. Apparently, if somebody writes the word ‘man’ in that particular box, the census staff will include it in the ‘trans-man’ category – even if it is the same as their declared sex.
But beyond that, if you don’t have a gender identity, but merely have a biological sex, then the gender question is very vexing to answer. It is plainly a loaded question because it is presupposing people must have a gender identity at all, when this is a controversial ideological concept that was only formulated yesterday.
There are three ways to handle the question if you identify it as a loaded question:
1) Tut, and then just answer ‘yes’, i.e. that there is no difference between your gender identity and your sex.
2) Refuse to answer the question, as it is voluntary. Presumably some of the 6% who refused to answer fall in this category.
3) Answer ‘no’ and, for the follow-up question asking what is your gender identity, write nothing (0.24% did this), or explicitly write “none”. ONS has not given a full breakdown, but 0.04% answered ‘no’ to the first question and then gave an answer other than trans / non-binary for the follow-up question). So some of this 0.04% may well include people who wrote “none”.
This means that there is an unknown proportion of 6.28% of respondents who may have treated it as a loaded question and answered in a non-conformist manner.

Last edited 1 year ago by jpeter.sanderson
Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
1 year ago

West Ham football fans, far from identifying as Trans, seem to swear allegiance to fundamentalist Sunni-Islam.
“Hamas till I die” – or at least I think that’s what they said.

Last edited 1 year ago by Paddy Taylor
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

North Bank rather than West Bank!

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

I’d always thought that happened south of their manor, in Palace-tine.

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Given West Ham’s complex ownership structure, it has been suggested the club might instead be run as a Not-for-Prophet.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Very good!

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Boom, boom!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Very good!

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

Boom, boom!

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Given West Ham’s complex ownership structure, it has been suggested the club might instead be run as a Not-for-Prophet.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

North Bank rather than West Bank!

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Paddy Taylor

I’d always thought that happened south of their manor, in Palace-tine.

Paddy Taylor
Paddy Taylor
1 year ago

West Ham football fans, far from identifying as Trans, seem to swear allegiance to fundamentalist Sunni-Islam.
“Hamas till I die” – or at least I think that’s what they said.

Last edited 1 year ago by Paddy Taylor
Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
1 year ago

Surely the key question is now ONS has realised the trans result in the census is deeply flawed, will the other mistakes based on 0.1% be admitted to and any actions taken based on those mistakes be repealed?
It is fairly obvious the answer is no, which is why individual freedom of speech is so precious to guard against the systemic lies.

Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
1 year ago

Surely the key question is now ONS has realised the trans result in the census is deeply flawed, will the other mistakes based on 0.1% be admitted to and any actions taken based on those mistakes be repealed?
It is fairly obvious the answer is no, which is why individual freedom of speech is so precious to guard against the systemic lies.

Peter Kwasi-Modo
Peter Kwasi-Modo
1 year ago

Thanks, as always to Dr. Stock for her unqique blend of erudition and wit. It is not just ONS that is tainted with wokespeak. On 10 February 2023, UnHerd published the results of a survey which included the question ‘Do you agree with the assertion “trans women are women”. 33% of res