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by Joan Smith
Thursday, 8
June 2023
Debate
15:15

Labour MSP silenced for the duration of Pride Month

Pauline McNeill has been forced to withdraw from an event for sex-based rights
by Joan Smith
Pauline McNeill is the latest female politician to be targeted by gender ideology activists. Credit: Getty

I keep being told that the Labour Party has changed. Friends claim there are encouraging signs that it’s edging away from the knee-jerk support for extreme gender ideology that has left so many women angry and disillusioned. I’m less optimistic, though, and my misgivings have been reinforced by news from Scotland, where a Labour frontbencher has been forced to withdraw from co-hosting a meeting at Holyrood next week to discuss the Equality Act. This is evidently such a heinous offence that a Scottish Labour “source” has suggested Pauline McNeill MSP should apologise for her involvement.

McNeill’s withdrawal, according to the Scotsman, was triggered by a complaint to the party stating that holding the meeting during Pride Month “appears to be a deliberate attack on trans people and their allies”. It raises the prospect that there is now an entire month in Scotland when Labour politicians are banned from saying anything that might offend a single trans person.


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A lawyer might think that a discussion of “The Meaning of Sex Under the Equality Act 2010” is a perfectly reasonable topic for a Labour MSP to address. A lawyer like Sir Keir Starmer KC, for instance, might feel there is something fundamentally anti-democratic about elected representatives being told they can’t discuss UK legislation. But there has been no response from either Starmer or the leader of Scottish Labour, Anas Sarwar.

Next week’s meeting features a panel of lawyers and legal experts, including the barrister and co-founder of Sex Matters Naomi Cunningham, and Dr Michael Foran, an academic from the University of Glasgow. Are these people dangerous? Are they likely to encourage violence against trans people? No one could seriously think so, and this woeful episode tells us two important things.

Firstly, trans activists are absolutely terrified of a proposal that the meaning of sex in the Equality Act should be clarified to remove any doubt that it refers to people who were born female. And secondly, the Labour Party has a long way to go if it wants to do the right thing by women. 

It’s clear that Scottish Labour is almost as captured by the gender cult as the SNP. In December, Sarwar whipped his MSPs to vote for the Gender Recognition Reform Act, a foolhardy piece of legislation that would allow men to get a certificate declaring themselves to be women without safeguards. Starmer has been backing away from supporting the introduction of self-ID in the rest of the UK, but he still won’t condemn the misogyny that so obviously fuels attacks on women like McNeill.

Anyone who thinks Labour is a “safe space” for women, to use the fashionable terminology, might want to reflect on the way leading figures continue sucking up to PinkNews, a platform that sees transphobia everywhere. On Wednesday evening, Anneliese Dodds, the party’s shadow women and equalities minister, spoke at a PinkNews reception at Westminster, alongside the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

Perhaps Labour, in Scotland and the rest of the UK, could issue a list of dates when other points of view can be discussed. But that may be expecting too much of a party that appears to live in terror of offending a bunch of people with profoundly misogynist views about sex and gender.

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Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
3 months ago

Nobody really doubts only biological women can naturally give birth and only biological men can produce sperm. The confusion between gender and sex/biology has resulted in men believing they are women (usually parodies of women) because they are attracted to feminine attire and believe traditionally feminine roles and behaviours feel more natural to them. Similarly some women feel more comfortable dressing and behaving in a way they believe to be more masculine. To be a woman is not a feeling, it is a fact. If a man says he feels like a woman, the comment is meaningless.

Last edited 3 months ago by Aphrodite Rises
David B
David B
3 months ago

What about Shania Twain?

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
3 months ago
Reply to  David B

Good point, though to feel like a woman is not to be a woman. Maybe Shania Twain is implicated in the rise of trans ideology.. Regardless of how she feels, she is a woman, and this is where I do agree with trans ideology, only Shania Twain really knows what she is feeling and where I differ is I don’t agree that that feeling is what makes her a woman. If it were true, then if a man put on a dress and said he felt like a woman, then he would be a woman and no one could dispute it (which is precisely what the trans activists claim) and to be a woman would indeed be indefinable, it would be whatever a person felt it to be. Also feelings are ephemeral, when one stops feeling happy one is no longer happy. Women would be popping in and out of existence which some trans activists do claim.

Last edited 3 months ago by Aphrodite Rises
Dominic Lyne
Dominic Lyne
3 months ago

Everyone seems to have jumped on the bandwagon and they all want acceptance, these new women, who have made little effort to become women, in many cases.
It’s quite telling that many trans lesbians, that still have penises are not interested in dating other Trans women with penises. It seems like in many cases they don’t accept themselves, but don’t like it when vulnerable young cis women struggle with it.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
3 months ago
Reply to  Dominic Lyne

It’s all nonsense. People believe all sorts of things. It doesn’t make them true. A man dressing up as a woman doesn’t make him a woman even if he has surgery to make his body appear more female (less male really). If I believed I was the late queen reincarnate, started to dress and speak as she did and had plastic surgery so I looked like her, I would still not be her majesty reincarnate. There is no such thing as a CIS woman. There are men and women. There are clearly men and women who like to present as the opposite sex but they are not the opposite sex and can never be the opposite sex.

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
3 months ago
Reply to  Dominic Lyne

I am very much a live and let live person but I strongly object to being told what to believe, and to having my money spent on propaganda- I am cancelling my direct debit to Oxfam which has been in place for twenty years.

Rob N
Rob N
3 months ago
Reply to  Dominic Lyne

Effort is irrelevant. Being a man or woman requires no effort and even huge amounts of effort to change will have no effect on what you are.

Only men have penises but not having a p***s does NOT make you a woman.

Adrian Smith
Adrian Smith
3 months ago

There seems to be an obsession with what you were born as. Sex is genetic, it is determined at conception and will remain unchanged and detectable even after you are dead, it is a fact not something that is assigned, though there are some very rare cases where deformities do make it difficult to determine from physical observation at birth.
Gender would appear to be nothing more than a state of mind, on a spectrum and entirely fluid. There would therefore seem to be very little benefit to categorising people by it.
Unfortunately the language around the whole issue has become so mangled, confusing and ever changing as to what is acceptable and what is offensive at any one particular time, there seems to be little point in trying to keep up with any of it. Getting it “wrong” does not make you a phobe nor does it constitute hate speech. Everyone should be able to discuss their feelings and beliefs openly at any time in a liberal society. It is only authoritarian and totalitarian societies where there is a problem with doing so. It is a strange irony that those in our society who are acting in an authoritarian / totalitarian manner have decided to call themselves progressive.

Will K
Will K
3 months ago

Who inflicted ‘Pride Month’ on us? Pride is one of the mortal sins.

Kevin Kilcoyne
Kevin Kilcoyne
3 months ago

A horrible ideology that reinforces gender stereotypes, and prioritises medicalisation and surgery over introspection and encouraging people to be comfortable in their own skins. Aside from the gender stereotypes, they reinforce largely unattainable/unnecessary beauty standards – that progressives claim to rail against. There’s nothing wrong with a man who embraces his femininity (or vise versa) – it could even be celebrated as a true expression of one’s self, but that man is still a man and ought not be seen as anything else. Perhaps as a trans woman may be appropriate, if they feel that labels would help them (they wouldn’t) – but they don’t get the rights of the opposite sex.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
3 months ago

The progressives are wrong about almost everything but they have mastered the use of language. Transphobia is so widespread these days, the activists must wish they could roll back the clock 20 years when their very existence wasn’t threatened. They must yearn for the days when we had Pride Year, rather than just Pride Month.

Emil Castelli
Emil Castelli
3 months ago

Enough of this insanity, the worlds NEEDS, is dieing for, is crying out for:

SHAME MONTH

Same characters, just being real, different flag.

Carol Lennie
Carol Lennie
3 months ago

I was begining to think that Scottish Labour was beginning to recognise damage it’s done with it’s unquestioning support of a misogynistic gender ideology. If Sarwar does not understand importance of discussing issues around equality act – especially in light of Westminster debate- then he is not fit to be taken seriously.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
3 months ago

When did we as a society become so scared of men that wear dresses?

Emil Castelli
Emil Castelli
3 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Troons

b blimbax
b blimbax
3 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

When? Maybe when we were told we were required to consider them to be women or else we would face consequences.

Last edited 3 months ago by bill blax
Claire D
Claire D
3 months ago

When a man says he feels like a woman, I wonder, how would he know.

The best a man can get, is to feel like a man might imagine a woman to feel like.

Bit like imagining what it feels like an ostrich or a badger.

Dominic Lyne
Dominic Lyne
3 months ago

The problem is that the Trans revolution has gone mainstream, or the discourse has, at least. So, anyone can join without any effort.
If anyone, literally anyone, can become trans at the drop of a hat, then maybe it’s the definition of trans woman that is wrong? Or maybe not all trans women can be called women?

In my experience, most people would not complain about a proper trans woman, i.e. a fully transitioned person, who acts and looks like a woman, blends in and is accepted. What we have now is a mockery of that and the new “women” are not being accepted largely as they don’t blend in as well as they have more male traits than female. But they want to be accepted as if they were real women. So this is the confusion, in my opinion, because there is uproar against what we feel are fake trans women, that are getting in the way of real transgender rights.
It’s driving division and that’s what the activists want.

Rob N
Rob N
3 months ago
Reply to  Dominic Lyne

“proper trans woman”, “acts and looks like a woman”. What a load of rubbish. Men are men, women are women; how you look or act has nothing to do with it.

Andrew H
Andrew H
3 months ago

Excellent piece, glad you mentioned Labour support for the travesty of the GRRA.

Doug Mccaully
Doug Mccaully
3 months ago

If Starmer intervenes in Scottish Labour business it will give a boost to the SNP, currently on the ropes. He doesn’t want to jeopardise Labour’s chances of SNP seats at the next election. The pursuit of power makes hypocrites of all politicians, but without power they can do nothing.

Rob N
Rob N
3 months ago

“refers to people who were born female.”. You mean females. What you are at birth is what you are, and will be your entire life.

Paul Boire
Paul Boire
3 months ago

With the Pill which Dr Jordan Peterson states has had a more powerful impact on human life than hydrogen bombs, we thought we had separated our sexual activity and its organs from its purpose; new life.
By this logic, “same sex” activity is as acceptable as any other activity that brings pleasure. And liberal women adopted the HIV infected young men (over a million dead in the west) in the same sex denying feminist garb de Beauvoir started.
“Gender” gets reinvented as if there ever was anything other than mature human sexual behavior, and immature human sexual behavior.
We rename sodomizing, “gay” and lie about the genetic evidence contradicting “born that way” lies, and railroad children, hundreds of thousands of whom were sexually abused at critical developmental ages (average 11 years old) by older males as the NYC AIDS study surveys proved.
And we slap ourselves on the back for being so loving and progressive.

Arkadian X
Arkadian X
3 months ago

Is the meeting still going ahead and has Regan been censur d as well?