Catch up with the full article found here on The Critic.

This is the situation we are up against.  Speaking out against or even wanting to discuss the gender religion can be hazardous to you and your livelihood.  Isn’t it darkly fascinating that defining women as adult human females is considered, in some ‘progressive circles’ the pinnacle of heresy?

 

“You tweeted in May 2015:

  • Words are our servants not masters. But reality masterfully demands words to respect objective distinctions. “Social constructs” have limits
  • Thus, it is polite & praiseworthy to refer to trans people by pronoun of choice. But not when talking of, say, chromosomes or anatomy
  • No matter how neutral, objective, disinterested, or just plain true your statement, someone will be deeply (& offensively) offended.
  • Anthropologists respect a culture by, say, synonymising “brother” & “cousin”. But we must acknowledge scientific distinction as more real.

This is pretty much the position for which I lost my job at an international development think tank, and which was deemed by a judge to be “not worthy of respect in a democratic society”. It is the position for which JK Rowling has been deemed a terrible transphobe, and disavowed by the Robert F Kennedy Foundation, who also revoked an award.

Meaning matters when words are used to make, or break, the rules by which society operates

I imagine you got some pushback at the time, but not of the ferociousness that women face when they say this. And maybe not enough to spark a recognition that this is an authoritarian faith that has taken hold of our enlightenment institutions; complete with a catechism (“trans women are women, trans men are men, non-binary people are non-binary”), heresy laws and an inquisition. It has corrupted and corroded the systems for data collection, sense making and rule formation, for safety, cooperation, and collective endeavour.

In October 2015 you tweeted: “Is trans woman a woman? Purely semantic. If you define by chromosomes, no. If by self-identification, yes. I call her “she” out of courtesy.”

Courtesy is nice, but meaning matters when words are used to make, or break, the rules by which society operates. Is a “trans woman” a woman when it comes to women’s prisons, women’s refuges, women’s rugby, women’s athletics, the request by a woman to be seen by a female doctor, the rules around being searched by a police officer or a prison guard of a particular sex? Should statistics and medical risk assessment defer to courtesy or stick to facts?

I think you see it now. What is being asked is not just day-to-day courtesy, but replacing sex with self-identified gender in every situation and punishing those who refuse to comply (or who even ask to discuss).

Thank you for speaking up. Please keep doing it.”

Do speak up everyone and push back against this profoundly misogynistic anti-reality ideology, but stay safe while doing so.  Every voice, even anonymous voices on social media are important in spreading the word about this deeply regressive tide we are facing.

 

Speaking your mind can be a dangerous activity.  In the halls of academia though, it is purportedly the name of the game.  Please go and read Dr.Bert’s full post and enjoy her eloquence and clarity of thought in full.

I thought I would highlight some of the points that should be of interest to those who believe in academic freedom, and freedom of speech in general.

“[…]

‘I am a sociologist after all—and interrogate this current moment in which a certain contingent of social activists have deemed it not only justifiable, but proper, to silence any discussion about sex and negotiation of competing sex-based and gender-identity-based rights. Some might say, and I might agree, this is part of the larger ‘woke’ movement among those who identify with the Left. I might note that my political beliefs position me on the Left, but I believe in the importance of evidence, reason and logic, and a material reality in which we all exist).'”

Her resignation letter (from the Division of Women and Crime) really knocks it out of the park, it is a clarion call to those who remain on the non gender religious Left. (**ed.  It was mistakenly reported here that Dr.Burt’s letter was to the Editorial board, when in fact it was from the Division of Women and Crime – change applied to the relevant parts of this post and apologies to Dr.Burt**)

“However, a division that traffics in mantras and refuses to engage with people raising valid concerns (dismissing people for ‘hateful wrong think’), is not a group I wish to be a member of. For those of you who consider me a ‘meany’, baddie, hater who is a transphobe, you’re probably relieved. But you are wrong. I am not a transphobe, and I do not hate trans people or males or anyone. 

Just this week reports came out of a male who self-ID’ed into the women’s prison in Washington state and raped a female prisoner housed there. I think that’s something to discuss; your explicit position is that doing so is hateful transphobia that must be silenced for inclusivity and the well-being of transgender people. But what about females and transwomen who would be harmed by predatory males self-ID’ing into women’s spaces?

Many of you were part of the LGBT movement in the late 1990s/early 2000s, and some of you weren’t. I was. We didn’t effect change by refusing to engage, dismissing those who disagreed, and censoring any discussion of negotiating gay rights. We were successful because we talked. We tried to understand the positions of others and helped them see ours. Maybe your attempts to censor any discussion of sex will work to effect the change you wish to see in the world. Maybe it won’t. Regardless of the outcome, I do not find the division’s silencing discussion of issues, which are complex and multilayered and sometimes uncomfortable, acceptable in academia or in the Division of Women and Crime. 

I wish you well, and I’m sad to go. But I refuse to go along silently with a group that calls discussion of gender/sex-self-ID ‘transphobic’ when there are real issues to discuss here that have everything to do with the safety of females and transwomen and nothing to do with hate or bigotry.”

Wow.

 

*applause*

 

 

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