by Julie Bindel
Thursday, 11
August 2022
Reaction
13:42

Who will put an end to gender ID witch-hunts?

Universities are doing nothing to stop them
by Julie Bindel
(Photo by Belinda Jiao/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

I have lost count of how many times I have been de-platformed from universities since I was declared to be “transphobic” by the National Union of Students (NUS) in 2008. The playbook is always the same: I am invited either by students or academic staff, and then publicly cancelled.

But now, the grown-ups have been exposed as more irresponsible and immature than the students. The University and College Union (UCU), headed by trans activist Jo Grady, gave us a taster of a pending investigation on UCU’s activities last week in a TikTok (what else?) of her berating Times journalist James Beal. According to Grady, Beal had been asking questions of UCU members over their support for “trans rights”. Posting the video on Twitter, Grady stated firmly that “UCU stands unequivocally with trans people.”

The gist of the Times story, published today, is that UCU has been busy compiling lists of university staff who hold “gender critical beliefs” (i.e. that sex is immutable and gender is a social construction) — beliefs that are deemed “worthy of respect in a democratic society” as per the Maya Forstater case and further clarified by Allison Bailey.

UCU had planned on using the information to “inform” UCU university branches of their colleagues’ views, accusing them of being “transphobes” and “gender-critical activists”.

This looks like a witch hunt to me.

Last year, Grady refused to condemn the bullying and vilification of my friend Kathleen Stock, who was effectively ousted from her job as philosophy professor from the University of Sussex. As Brady noted at the time: “I don’t feel the need to say whether I back anybody.” So, Grady, who earned more than £140,000 last year, did not feel the need to back one of her members who was being harassed, threatened, and pushed out of her job because of her perfectly reasonable beliefs.

It is no wonder the Times has been investigating the shocking behaviour of UCU. At the height of Stock’s ordeal at Sussex, the Sussex branch of UCU said in a statement that “all trans and non-binary members now more than ever should receive the unequivocal support” of the union. So in this latest episode of “Orwell could not make this stuff up”, the bullies have become the victims.

Universities are no longer places of learning, but of fear-mongering and mollycoddling. Yesterday, it was revealed that a number of universities have been adding trigger warnings to, and in some cases removing, over 1,000 texts in order to “protect” students from “challenging” material. One of those books, Straight Expectations: What does it mean to be gay today? was written by me. Explaining why a warning was attached to the book, the Glasgow School of Art statement reads: “Her views…have been criticised as transphobic by some activists and writers.”

UCU is supposed to “protect and advance the interests of its members in the workplace” but instead, under Grady, it has become a friend to bullies and censors.

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Richard Barrett
Richard Barrett
1 month ago

As a librarian, I sincerely hope that libraries have not been complicit in this hysteria by withdrawing books from library collections. If they have, then shame on them.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 month ago

I spend quite a lot of time in my city’s central library, often while wearing my t shirt bearing the slogan “I stand with J.K.Rowling”.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 month ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Good for you.

Doug Pingel
Doug Pingel
1 month ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Probably the safest place but do keep away from the water’s edge. The local ‘intellectual thugs’ might do a Colston on you.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 month ago

Go read the American Library Association’s views on LGBTQIA++XYZ. They’re not only complicit; they’re with the cheerleaders.

Catherine M
Catherine M
1 month ago

Just watched a trans girl on social media proudly display all the messages sent from her teachers in support of her respecting her chosen pronouns. Teacher after teacher messaged her with positive and fawning responses, begging that she let them know if there was anything else she needed to help her “on her journey”.
It reminded me uncomfortably of The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and the Chinese students who beat their students to death. Anything that isn’t 100% correct will be swiftly punished, and the teachers know it. Regardless of their personal views on the matter, they know what the “party line” has to be.

Miriam Cotton
Miriam Cotton
1 month ago
Reply to  Catherine M

Please don’t call this boy ‘her’. It humours his narcissism. He clearly already has enough foolish adults in his life dancing attendance on him. It just feeds his little power trip.

Catherine M
Catherine M
1 month ago
Reply to  Miriam Cotton

I don’t know anymore! lol…so frustrating. This was a female who wants to be a boy…so is that not a trans girl? I guess that’s a trans boy? I don’t know…but the teen was a female. So I used the correct pronoun, wrong ‘chosen’ label. Ridiculously confusing.

Last edited 1 month ago by Catherine M
Kat Ferguson
Kat Ferguson
1 month ago
Reply to  Catherine M

A girl who identifies as male is a transboy, as in the case you describe.. A boy who identifies as female is a transgirl.

Albireo Double
Albireo Double
1 month ago

I don’t understand how the behaviour of the idiotic “trans activists” is not workplace bullying, and therefore entirely actionable, and easily winnable, in any tribunal or court. Whereupon these ridiculous little jerks could be fined, sacked, sent-down, or whatever is appropriate to their status at the University.

Where are all the court cases? (I mean the little, ordinary ones, not the odd high-profile one that we do see – and welcome)!

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 month ago

Sorry, I read £140,000 and I’m still in shock.

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 month ago

Who will put an end to gender ID witch hunts?
Quick and easy answer: Certainly not the overpaid Jo Grady and the conformist Education Unions.
But see the article today by Debbie Hayton. It could be Suella Braveman if the Conservative party lets her lose in the right role.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 month ago
Reply to  Jeremy Bray

My near neighbour Daniel Kebede is currently a candidate for General Secretary of the NEU, of which he is already President. He is Laura Pidcock’s partner and he is a signatory to the Stop the War Coalition’s statement on Ukraine, so he is proper Left. He has been thoroughly gender-critical (and pro-Brexit, both in the Morning Star mould) into the recent past, and he has never expressed the contrary view. A glimmer of hope, perhaps?

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 month ago

The Education unions are notoriously bad at representing their members in workplace disputes. The leaderships are far too absorbed with being players on the national, political stage to worry about the little people whose subscriptions pay their salaries.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 month ago

All hail the glorious victory of Allison Bailey, both in itself and coming so soon after that of Maya Forstater, in whose famous words: “Sex is a biological fact, and is immutable. There are two sexes, male and female. Men and boys are male. Women and girls are female. It is impossible to change sex. These were until very recently understood as basic facts of life by almost everyone.”

Do not vote for any parliamentary candidate who did not say that, or the Leader of whose party did not say it. If they will lie about something as basic and as obvious as this, then they would lie about anything. This motion needs to be tabled in the House of Commons, and put to a division of the whole House: “Sex is a biological fact, and is immutable. There are two sexes, male and female. Men and boys are male. Women and girls are female. It is impossible to change sex.” Do not vote for anyone who, being an MP, had not voted for that, or the Leader of whose party, being an MP, had not done so.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 month ago

Imagine for a moment if warnings had to be posted on all material that Christians could find offensive?

Jeremy Bray
Jeremy Bray
1 month ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Why confine it to Christians surely we are all entitled not to be exposed to material that might upset or offend us.

Mind you I am astonished the Bible has not been marked as unsuitable to be read by the young. The suffering of Christ on the Cross should be enough to give any sensitive soul nightmares.

The parable of the talents where the servants who invested their master’s money in trade and made a profit received praise while the servant who received least and cautiously preserved it was condemned should certainly receive a trigger warning for the benefit of any sensitive social justice warrior. No wonder the servant who received least went on strike and refused to participate in capitalist speculation.

Edit Szegedi
Edit Szegedi
1 month ago

Well, now you have a little taste of Stalinism. Enjoy it!

Michael Askew
Michael Askew
1 month ago

So “gender critical beliefs” (i.e. that sex is immutable and gender is a social construction).
Is there a contradiction here? If sex is immutable, why would we assume that (unlike every other mammal), gender differences in humans are entirely disctated by social pressure, and in no way affected by the immutable nature of biological sex?
One suspects that “gender is a social construction” is a mantra based not on evidence, but on a desire to knock down every assumption of difference between the sexes.

Sanchez Oriente
Sanchez Oriente
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Askew

It’s not the people who are gender critical that claim no differences, feminists believe there are differences between the sexes – different therefore equal.
Gender is a set of harmful stereotypes applied to both sexes, it’s an ideology that has no evidence-base.
Sex is a biological fact and humans cannot change sex.
If a man has a feminine expression and likes wearing ‘women’s’ clothes, it doesn’t make him a woman, just a feminine man and there’s nothing wrong with that; Equally, a woman with a masculine expression who is a car mechanic or a builder who chooses not to wear ‘women’s’ clothes is still a woman.

michael harris
michael harris
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Askew

What ‘gender is a social construct’ means is this.
‘Gender’ is nothing at all. It is only a creation of belief and is kept alive by cult adherence and hatred of outsiders.

Michael James
Michael James
1 month ago

Is courage nowadays regarded as threatening?

Last edited 1 month ago by Michael James
Laura Creighton
Laura Creighton
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael James

yes. very masculine and thus toxic, too.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 month ago

Julie, follow the example of many American comedians and stop accepting invitations to these temples of intolerance. Don’t allow them the power to gloat over cancelling your appearances. There are loads of liberal thinkers, mostly on the right, who would be happy to share a stage with you, or host you on their podcasts. Unless being a victim is your jam . . .?

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 month ago

hey, urrr… like.. this is, like SOO sexist, yurr? What about wizard hunts?.. and like, hunting is now outlawed, so non binary drag hunts, are like, legal n stuff, yuh?

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 month ago

They are just deploying the feminist playbook and their witch hunts continue

Last edited 1 month ago by Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 month ago

Who will end the reign of the trans activists?

Will it be one of their own having a “Nixon goes to China” moment, crossing the chasm to humanize and socialize with the deplorables?

Will it be a “have you no decency” moment when they accuse someone of something so absurd their moral authority collapses.

Or… will it not end until the West is so weak we end up being defeated either economically or militarily?

I hope to be wrong, but I believe it will be #3. I see no path by which all our institutional elites can walk this stuff back, and for people who believe consequence free sex to be the highest form of human liberation from oppression, I see no reason they will want to.

Last edited 1 month ago by Brian Villanueva
Jane Walsh
Jane Walsh
1 month ago

Thank you Ms. Bindel.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 month ago

Witch hunt? Can I obtain the letters ” MWH” after my name and become a Master of Witch/Wizard ( non binary/ M/F) Hounds?
I look forward to kennels open day, the puppy show and the point to point…

Jamie B
Jamie B
1 month ago

My response to accusations of “transphobia” is “Allodoxaphobia?