by Debbie Hayton
Thursday, 3
March 2022
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15:10

Scotland’s Gender Recognition Act won’t help trans people

Today's bill is as bad as feared
by Debbie Hayton
Credit: Getty

If the Scottish Government thinks that their proposed reforms to the Gender Recognition Act will improve the lives of trans people, then it is utterly deluded.

The bill, published this morning, would offer us nothing more than the right to change the sex marker on our birth certificates without the need to provide any medical evidence. But at what cost? That medical evidence — a diagnosis of gender dysphoria from a consultant psychiatrist — is no barrier to people who need to protect their privacy after going through a meaningful transition.  But, crucially, it provides the checks and balances that have underpinned the trust and confidence that we used to take for granted.

Make no mistake, if women think that any man can change his legal sex just because he wants to, then they will close ranks against all of us, and they are right to do so. Six years ago, when self-identification first raised its head, I wrote:

The proposed law might require people in official positions to take trans people at their word, but it cannot regulate social groups that create their own boundaries. Transwomen in particular may find that goodwill is replaced by suspicion should abusive men spot an opportunity to exploit women’s spaces and protections.
- Debbie Hayton

It stands to reason. Safeguarding weaknesses attract those looking for safeguarding weaknesses. And this bill introduces them. The campaign group, ForWomen Scotland, was succinct:

They are, apparently, willing to sacrifice women’s safety, set our rights back by decades, and reinforce the notion that being a woman is nothing more than a feeling or a costume.
- ForWomen Scotland

Sexism runs through this bill, but without speaking its name — literally. While the word gender appears 244 times, the word sex is absent. Sex and gender are not synonymous. Sex is rooted in biology — the material reality of our existence — and gender can mean whatever we want it to mean. But these distinctions are not reflected in the bill, which detaches the words ‘men’ and ’women’ from our biology. By demanding the need to live ‘in the acquired gender throughout the period of three months,’ the bill has reduced them to a social performance.

This is a bad bill that helps neither women nor trans people, but my greatest fear is the potential impact on children. Along with self-identification, the age limit would be reduced from 18 to 16. Children too young to consent to a tattoo are suddenly deemed capable of changing their legal sex. What does that tell them?

The bill is not yet a fait accompli — it still needs to be debated at Holyrood — and the Scottish government needs to be pressed for answers. Who told the Government that this proposal was a good idea, and why on earth did the Government believe them?

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Philip Stott
Philip Stott
3 months ago

Keep fighting the good fight Debbie.
This bill is utter madness from that incompetent government up there.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
3 months ago

Who told the Government that this proposal was a good idea, and why on earth did the Government believe them?

There’s a lot of money for those involved in pushing transgender ideology:
https://philanthropynewsdigest.org/news/20-million-global-initiative-launched-to-improve-transgender-lives
If you dig deeper into this, you’ll find that much of the transgender movement is funded by billionaire philanthropists. For what reason, I do not know, except that children and adults who are suffering from psychosexual confusion pose very little real threat to the established world order. It’s the same reason that social justice advocates, while LARPing around pretending to resist the establishment, actually collect fat paychecks or donations from those they are supposed to be resisting.
Note how any movement that is not approved of by the establishment (usually those organized by working-class men) is quickly labelled far-right.

R Wright
R Wright
3 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

This is my personal favourite.
https://suedonym.substack.com/p/inauthentic-selves-the-modern-lgbtq

“The top donors are still organizations like Arcus Foundation, Ford Foundation, Gilead Sciences, the Gill Foundation, and the Open Society Foundations. Gay men received 6% of ring-fenced funding specifically for them, and lesbians 3%. Transgender funding increased from $22.4 million dollars to $32 million dollars, a huge increase — almost a fifth of all LGBTQ funding is specifically ring-fenced for transgender issues, which is highly disproportionate to their actual numbers in the LGBT community.”

Marcia McGrail
Marcia McGrail
3 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

‘..for what reason..’? you already answered the question – because the billionaire philanthropists can. They get a giggle and a raison d’etre for their shallow, money-fed lives in stirring the established world order. Can you not imagine the conversations in their conclaves? You may not see very much threat presently but the new world order being established around confused children and adults of all hues by SJ dupes soon will. Keep watching.

Andrea X
Andrea X
3 months ago

In answering your last question, I read an interesting article yesterday saying that NS thought the would be an easy win and it would make her look good at next to no cost. Then it began to unravel, but she couldn’t back down (or maybe she misunderstood what was going on making it even more difficult backing down later on). Then in came the greens, so she is even more embroiled in it.
Anyway, it is pretty much a fait accompli as labour and the lib Dems are largely in favour, so even if there would be a rebellion from some SNP (something unheard of) it would make no difference.

Last edited 3 months ago by Andrea X
Debbie Hayton
Debbie Hayton
3 months ago
Reply to  Andrea X

It seems to me that the Scottish Government lapped this ideology without thinking. Now they are in so deep they cannot back down without losing face. So I don’t think they can face the truth.

Andrea X
Andrea X
3 months ago
Reply to  Debbie Hayton

That goes without saying.
There was a fantastic comment under yesterday’s Andrew Doyle’s article which sums up the SG’s take on fairness and compassion:
“It is worth remembering that weaponised compassion is not compassion at all. Weaponised compassion is the desire to control the actions, speech and thoughts of others, rebranded. “

Last edited 3 months ago by Andrea X
N Forster
N Forster
3 months ago
Reply to  Andrea X

ta

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
3 months ago
Reply to  Debbie Hayton

The deeper problem is two fold
The “experts” or doctors in this field can push stuff like surgery or meds without facing any potential liability if their ideas are found wrong in future
And for a lot of upper class women, the feminist notion of no biological identity (enthusiastically adopted by the trans lobby) is too useful, and the benefits of quotas in various fields to overcome sexism is much more lucrative than the downsides.

As long as both these camps are aligned against them, sensible people and the interests of women and especially young girls / boys face an uphill battle.

Virginia McGough
Virginia McGough
3 months ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

As it stands, the bill exposes confused and vulnerable adolescents to irreparable damage.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
3 months ago
Reply to  Andrea X

I have a male friend who is hard core SNP and he is speaking out against these laws. Maybe something is shifting,

Debbie Hayton
Debbie Hayton
3 months ago

I think it has been a reason why the push for independence has fizzled. The SNP seem far more interested in identity politics these days.

Andrea X
Andrea X
3 months ago
Reply to  Debbie Hayton

They have to keep busy somehow. Governing does not interest them, independence is on the back burner, so they find these “moral” topics where they pour all their attention to show how “compassionate” they are and how keen they are on a “fairer” Scotland (see my other comment above.

Chris Mochan
Chris Mochan
3 months ago
Reply to  Debbie Hayton

The SNP strategy has been to outflank Labour on the left and create the illusion of nice cuddly Scotland against nasty reactionary England. This means they will embrace virtually any ‘progressive’ cause which comes along. To be fair, it has been an incredibly successful strategy, but it is liable to throw up these divisive issues which probably do them long term harm.

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
3 months ago
Reply to  Debbie Hayton

I think the independence thing has fizzled out for another reason. With independence, ultimately, comes joining Europe. I doubt that an independence vote could be won today because Europe looks really bad – is it better to be with England (past enemy) or Europe (organisational disaster)?
For independence to return, Ursula has to go. She has to be replaced by a strong person. Does that person exist?

Gordon Black
Gordon Black
3 months ago

I’ve just completed the Scotland’s Census forms in English (not being a gaylick speaker): 4 questions relating to sexual orientation and preferred gender identity got extremely impolite short-shrift.

Al M
Al M
3 months ago
Reply to  Gordon Black

Quite. It’s none of their ruddy business which cohorts one might be attracted to. I have yet to open my envelope. Does it actually say ‘gender identity’ and nothing about biological sex?

Essentially, this census data will now be incompatible with that for England and Wales. What a surprise.

Last edited 3 months ago by Al M
Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
3 months ago

As usual Debbie Hayton represents the voice of sanity rather than that of the fuzzy cynical opportunistic dumb Scot Nat/Green/LibDem/Lab political coalition fearful of being on the wrong side of history. Keep up the good work.
Where can I contribute to support such a voice of sanity?

Debbie Hayton
Debbie Hayton
3 months ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

Mine’s a pint of IPA. 😉

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
3 months ago

To add to my comment, this too is an interesting article: https://www.thinkinghousewife.com/2016/12/the-manufactured-insanity-of-transgenderism/#

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
3 months ago

What a world.
You can choose being a man or a woman like changing clothes, irrespective of genitals or chromosomes, but your sexual orientation is completely fixed at birth.

Last edited 3 months ago by Samir Iker
Samir Iker
Samir Iker
3 months ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Is it me, or the number of comments waiting for “approval” has increased?
All for the public good I guess, protecting others from the verbal diarrhea of cranky ageing. men like me

R Wright
R Wright
3 months ago

With this frontier broken I wonder what they’ll move onto next. Will it be the ‘MAP’movement of the 70s all over again?

Tom Lewis
Tom Lewis
3 months ago

I wonder if my post is “Awaiting approval” because I said I live in Scotland ? Can’t think why else.

Andrea X
Andrea X
3 months ago
Reply to  Tom Lewis

I thought the moderating madness had calmed down. But perhopas not.
(And I live in Scotland too…)

Tom Lewis
Tom Lewis
3 months ago
Reply to  Andrea X

That’s it, you’re stuffed now, you’ve let the MacCat out of the bag, now that they know you’re from the wee, not so free, Northern parts.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
3 months ago
Reply to  Tom Lewis

We know that Andrea comes from Scotland!

Ted Ditchburn
Ted Ditchburn
3 months ago

The bill already seems as if from another age, so fast moving are events at the moment. The SNP government has become a toxic mishmash of factions competing to be *the most* progressive, of ‘woke’, and an SNP party that seems to have placed an idea of infallibility at the heart of their project to create difference between themselves and the UK Govt to further their aim of acheiving independence by any way they can.
A host of social engineering policies that I think were probably meant to be low cost, low effort ways to signal difference,have gone badly wrong and the Scottish govt has no real way to backtrack so they plough relentlessly on, relentlessly wrong.
They do it with their use of the Gaelic language, literally signposting, as the actual use of the language continues to fall.
They did it with the anti family Named Person Act, which failed to pass the Supreme Court, but which they continue to introduce by stealth..a recent school questionnaire featuring questions on sexual behaviour addressed to 13 year olds is an example of ‘Named Person by other means’.
They have now done it with the Gender Recognition Act and I wish you luck in making the case for necessary changes to it that are badly needed and given the SNP history of hubristic belief in their own infallibility luck will be needed.