by Gareth Roberts
Friday, 15
October 2021
Spotted
13:30

Stephen Nolan’s Stonewall documentary is unmissable

The charity was never impartial
by Gareth Roberts
The Stonewall contingent at a Pride Parade. Credit: NIKLAS HALLE’N/AFP via Getty Images

Stephen Nolan’s new ten-part BBC podcast documentary on the influence of Stonewall ploughs rich journalistic soil, its length justified by its findings.

It is frequently jaw dropping — you will hear how the Scottish government paid Stonewall to lobby itself, how the BBC’s supposedly impartial LGBT correspondent was moonlighting for Stonewall, and how whistleblowing medical professionals with serious concerns were frozen out by campaigns of intimidation. You could write a brick of a book about what Nolan has turned up but here are some immediate observations.

  • From 2015, when Stonewall decided to add advocacy for transgender people to its remit, it instantly took on board the ideology of ‘gender identity’ rather than biological sex as the determining factor in the difference between men and women. This is a fringe ideology from American academic ‘queer theory’. It obviously has enormous implications for both gay people and wider society, particularly regarding women’s rights, but there appears to have been no thought paid to it at all by Stonewall. They even redefined ‘gay’ to mean attraction to a person of either sex with the same ‘identity’. This bizarre set of ideas, not recognised in law, were simply adopted without question, propagated into institutions such as the NHS, and given credence by Stonewall’s previous good reputation.
  • The behaviour of Ofcom, who used their reporting decisions on viewer complaints (I think probably the right ones but nonetheless) to get higher up on Stonewall’s equality index, and tried to cover up having done so, is reprehensible. This is the place where heads really should roll.
  • The BBC and Stonewall refused to be interviewed by Nolan, or even to answer specific questions from him, and rejected his FOI requests on spurious grounds. This high-handed attitude is very concerning. It’s to the credit of the BBC that it has broadcast Nolan’s investigation, but the lack of transparency from a publicly funded body is deeply shady. What don’t they want the public to know? Why the secrecy?
  • The intimidation of people who dispute gender identity ideology from extremist activists has frozen debate, as people are afraid to speak out against Stonewall for fear of losing their livelihoods. The equation of people acknowledging the facts of biological sex (ie the entirety of the human race for all recorded time until 2015) with anti-Semites (as made by Stonewall CEO Nancy Kelley) is a prime example of Stonewall’s ridiculous bullying hyperbole, which has no place in public life.
  • Stonewall’s only public response to Nolan since it appeared has been a profoundly unserious tweet with a hand-clapping emoji stating ‘We make 👏 no 👏 apology 👏 for working towards a better world for LGBTQ+ people.’ In other words, ‘We make no apology for something nobody is accusing us of doing.’ This is like being charged with murder and replying ‘How dare you accuse me of stealing that loaf of bread!’ It’s a transparent attempt to dodge the actual meat of Nolan, responding to criticism of itself as an attack on gay and trans people — this, despite the fact that its loudest, most concerned critics are gay and trans people.

There now surely has to be a full public inquiry with the power to compel the whole truth in detail from government, Stonewall and the BBC, and to protect democracy from unaccountable lobby groups.

Meanwhile, listen to the podcast — there’s so much more in it.

Join the discussion


To join the discussion, get the free daily email and read more articles like this, sign up.

It's simple, quick and free.

Sign me up
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
29 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Paul Sorrenti
Paul Sorrenti
11 months ago

Bye bye Stonewall

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
11 months ago
Reply to  Paul Sorrenti

Yes the tide finally seems to be turning.
When will their fellow travellers notice? People like the actors who railed against JK Rowling.

Paul Sorrenti
Paul Sorrenti
11 months ago
Reply to  Ian Stewart

at the exact moment the tide turns – when it becomes ethically fashionable to stand against it – they will rewrite their own personal histories to show they were always on side

Brendan O'Leary
Brendan O'Leary
11 months ago
Reply to  Paul Sorrenti

Well said. The fellow travelers are profoundly trendy (by which I mean “shallow”) people , always sniffing the social media wind.

Aldo Maccione
Aldo Maccione
11 months ago

Shallow rivers flow faster.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
11 months ago
Reply to  Ian Stewart

I actually feel for these actors – they are terrified. It’s not enough just to keep quite and hope it will blow over, there is a version of “white silence is white violence” within the gender identity “community”, and these actors know that unless they condemn the person, in this case Ms Rowling, they will be piled upon. It’s not noble, it’s not courageous, but it is understandable. The question that I am totally unable answer is how such a small minority gained so much fearsome power – who gave it to them? I didn’t, and I shall always speak-up.

James Joyce
James Joyce
11 months ago

Well said! Completely agree!

michael stanwick
michael stanwick
11 months ago

The question that I am totally unable answer is how such a small minority gained so much fearsome power – who gave it to them? 
My hypothesis is that they didn’t – well nor directly. My explanation is that this has been slow cooking in the educational institutions for years such that it has slowly been turning out humanities graduates that are very predisposed to this line of thought (critical queer theory) and who have subsequently gravitated to administrative positions within very influential institutions such as education, police, media and entertainment, museums and libraries etc etc. or, have occupied quango organisations that provide ideological direction. They may also be predisposed perhaps, if they hold a political position that is amenable to this ideology.

Jamie Smith
Jamie Smith
11 months ago

I agree. Same with critical race theory.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
11 months ago
Reply to  Paul Sorrenti

This sort of insanity can only exist when times are fat and easy. In hard times this sort of social insanity will be stomped on by the people as they have not got the luxury to have their hard lives F-ed with by such antisocial idiots.

The market is to bust, the money is being devalued by debt fuled money printing, the deficites in goods imported to exported, the private debt is unsustainable, the Corporate debt, the Equity Leverage, the local, and State debts unsustainable once interests cannot be held down by QE to infinity…..

It is a house of cards, and when it falls these sickoos will end up being crushed under the pile of debris as they are a counter productive luxury only fat times can support….

Norm Haug
Norm Haug
11 months ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

You may be correct, in the house of cards falling and creating chaos, but is that not what the intersectional leftists want? As institutions and countries become destabilized, each member of the intersectionalist collective hopes to create their version of utopia. It will not be a pretty picture when the Communists the Islamists, the trans activists; the BLM crowd; Antifa; the anti semites; and radical femminists start fighting for supremacy in the big rebuild.

Dennis Lewis
Dennis Lewis
11 months ago
Reply to  Paul Sorrenti

One can only hope and pray that it truly is bye-bye to this vile and divisive organisation. But I suspect that it isn’t.

Last edited 11 months ago by Dennis Lewis
Tony Buck
Tony Buck
11 months ago

Stonewall were a thoroughly pernicious set of people before Transgenderism and – amazingly enough – they’re an even nastier set of people now.

R Baron
R Baron
11 months ago

It’s seems that our domestic policy, the major planks of it, is informed and guided mostly by the lobby groups, often small in membership numbers but well funded (by whom?), aggressive and intolerant to even a hint of criticism, the elections now furnish only a semblance of democracy; The foreign policy, or at least the key areas of it, by our special friends over to the West.
Together with the Green mob the Stonewall outfit’s insidious penetration (no pun intended) of many of the institutions of State (with the uncritical connivance of the MSM) has been tolerated by the Government and the lawmakers because they no longer fear the electorate, but the wrath of the lobbyists. 
It’s unlikely that any investigation, however long in viewing time and deep in substance, will change it. 

Last edited 11 months ago by R Baron
Keith Jefferson
Keith Jefferson
11 months ago

I have just listened to the first few episodes of the Nolan podcast. If I understand this correctly, the whole basis of Stonewall’s equality index scheme is that organisations should allow Stonewall to judge them against criteria specified by Stonewall, and that those same organisations can pay Stonewall to provide advice and training on how they can perform better, and therefore get a better score. And the better the score an organisation receives, the higher up they will be in published tables of “virtuous organisations”, with commercial benefits in terms of PR etc. (and disbenefits if you score badly). This, to me, has the whiff of a legalised protection racket. At least Ronnie and Reggie didn’t lecture you when they demanded monies.
Given that multiple Govt departments seem to have signed up to the Stonewall scheme, is there any pressure on potential contractors for Govt services to also sign up? Even if there is an unconscious pressure, that would be outrageous.

Malcolm Knott
Malcolm Knott
11 months ago

In fact they paid Stonewall to give them incorrect and misleading advice – in the case of Quangos, with our money.

Hugh Oxford
Hugh Oxford
11 months ago

Thank God the truth is finally coming out about this evil organisation and the level of state corruption that surrounds it. Many of us have been trying to raise awareness about this organisation for decades and it is fantastic that we are finally being heard.

James Joyce
James Joyce
11 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Oxford

Are you referring to STONEWALL or the BBC? Both seem to meet your definition of “evil organization.”

James Joyce
James Joyce
11 months ago

The headline should be a variation of the subheading:
“The BBC was never impartial….”
As an occasional commentator on the BBC (perhaps cancelled), I would encourage those who can to NOT pay the license fee. British citizens should be in open revolt against this institutionalized progadanda: Joseph Goebbels would be proud. BBC is simply the media arm of the woke religion, exactly akin to NPR in the USA. It is completely biased and not worthy of public support.
With respect, I disagree with the commenters who believe that the tide (against wokeness) seems to be turning. It is also important to realize that many of the people cancelled by the mob (often “terfs”) are bad people (in my view), who seek to impose only a slightly milder version of woke ideology on everyone, but seem to have crossed a line with the trans community. Regrettably, the UnHerd crowd must, for a time, join forces with these people temporarily, until the woke are defeated. Then we can do battle against a slightly less crazy enemy, and they are the enemy–no room for respectful disagreements and Enlightenment thought.

Andrea X
Andrea X
11 months ago
Reply to  James Joyce

I was about to say something very similar.
A charity doesn’t have to be impartial at all, the BBC should.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
11 months ago

Listening to the podcast now – it’s brilliantly presented, and objectively too – their skill on staying on the tightrope as they ask penetrating questions is fantastic.
After reading the article on Unherd, ‘the misogyny of trans activists’, about the vile protesters at the FiLiA conference last weekend, I found another article by Julie Bindel (https://thecritic.co.uk/the-quiet-cancellations/) detailing how the Portsmouth Labour Party has supported these extremists. It makes you realise it’s not just Stonewall, but the Labour Party and the police who are promoting and protecting these activists.
I submitted complaints to the Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire using the material from the Unherd article as a reference.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
11 months ago
Reply to  Ian Stewart

Well done, Ian, if you have the evidence then taking things further is a good idea.

Andrea X
Andrea X
11 months ago

Thanks. I already have it on my phone ready to go. I noticed it last night on the BBC website and had to do a double take (twice, I think) when I read that it was on the BBC website, but the BBC refused to engage. A case of the right hand not knowing what the left is doing, or cognitive dissonance?

George Glashan
George Glashan
11 months ago
D Ward
D Ward
11 months ago
Reply to  George Glashan

Tks

Judy Englander
Judy Englander
11 months ago

The podcast can be found on youtube – type ‘Nolan investigates stonewall’ into their search engine.

Scott Norman Rosenthal
Scott Norman Rosenthal
11 months ago

How/where may I find the documentary?

Chris Bredge
Chris Bredge
11 months ago
Martin Adams
Martin Adams
9 months ago

Everything Gareth Roberts says above is sound in its identification of the ethical and other problems that not only surround the BBC’s engagement with Stonewall, but Stonewall itself, and the many other public bodies that have signed up to its programmes.
I was alerted to the sequence of programmes by a friend, about five days ago. About two days ago (December 9th) I attempted to listen to these programmes on BBC sounds. Every single link on the relevant page was dead, with the site reporting that “This content doesn’t seem to be working.” Fortunately I was able to find the series on YouTube.
Every word of praise for this series that Mr Roberts writes is justified. It’s an outstanding piece of deep-thinking and deep-digging journalism.
I’m no conspiracy theorist; but the fact that this was the only dead series of links in several pages I accessed successfully on BBC Sounds, has made me wonder what is going on.