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law

I am careful with content and tone even on my anonoymous twitter account

As a feminist all my life I feel we have sleep walked into a very worrying situation. As a teenager and young woman I was very active in feminism. Family and professional life then intervened and I took my eye off the ball. Things were good for me – a supportive stay at home husband who looks after the kids and good career progression and support at work – yes some stereotypes and bias but on the whole good. I naively  assumed things were getting better. But I suddenly woke up to find that women’s rights are eroding not getting better. My lived experience and the biases and prejudices I have battled all my life are not recognised.

The issues that arise from my biology – periods, pregnancy, birth, breast feeding, time off for babies – are ignored.

What makes me a woman is my biology not my feelings. I have battled sex based stereotypes all my life – and now find they define what it means to be a woman. Being a woman is not about make up and heels and clothes. My daughter could be expected to change in Top Shop next to a man or compete against a boy or use the same toilet as a man.

I am so not transphobic- I am a liberal leftie type who has always supported minorities and oppressed groups and now I am the transphobe because I believe in biology. Seriously?

I have discussed with colleagues, family and friends and have spoken out anonymously on twitter

I was initially open on Twitter but was cautious and exercised a lot of self censorship particularly after seeing Twitter pile ons and also observing some people being subject to letter campaigns to their employers. My job is safe – I am a partner in a law firm and virtually impossible to sack plus I am close to the end of my career anyway- but I am responsible for a team of people who rely on me to bring in client work and it would not be hard for a TRA to work out the names of the major corporations we act for and approach them to say that their lawyer is a transphobe. So I was cautious.

But then I was spoken to by the head of our LGBT+ group who said it had been brought to his attention that my tweets “supported the women’s perspective” and that it might have a “potential impact on transgender colleagues who are not yet open”. 

As a result I set up an anonymous Twitter account. I very occasionally like GC content from my open account but only occasionally. I am still careful with content and tone even with my GC account as it would be possible to work out that I am a lawyer and someone could still approach my regulator who would have the power to find out who I am should anyone complain. 

George , woman, mother, leftie feminist lawyer

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Others

This matters to me because women are disadvantaged because of their biology

Accepting transwomen as women undermines the gains that women have made and any future progress.

I have tweeted in support of GC on Twitter and re-tweeted to my followers.

I have discussed the issue with friends.

The only consequences I have had are the usual Shut up Terf etc. on Twitter. Some more threatening than others. Some seem to have an obsession with my appearance but I’m way too old to care.

I generally just block and move on.

Ces, Feminism and football

Categories
Education

I won’t lie and deny material reality and biology to avoid hurting a man’s feelings

This matters to me because women’s  sex-based rights, always so fragile, are being eroded in the name of identity politics; because trans rights activism is mens’ rights activism in a dress; because I won’t  lie and deny material reality and biology to avoid hurting a man’s  feelings, or to pander to his fetish.

I am vocal on Twitter, mainly, also Facebook, I have attended women’s group meetings, eg WPUK (Woman’s Place UK) sent letters/emails, handed out leaflets and spread the word amongst family and friends.

Some people think I’m weird and obsessed, I have had abuse on Twitter and two short term bans. None of this bothers me, I am retired and financially secure and don’t care what anyone thinks if me. I would feel physically intimidated  by TRAs in person, fortunately have not run into any outside meetings or on the street.

Jane Loe, Retired teacher, mother, grandmother, adult human female

Categories
Education

Very mentally unwell girls were identifying as boys and as their Biology teacher I was told I had to go along with this

I am a graduate biologist, and a science teacher in secondary schools. because I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with schools, and science being a shortage subject, I have always been able to take other jobs which I was interested in. this included working at Chiswick Women’s Aid, after which I had my first child as a single mother and became very involved in the second wave. having taken an MSc in Health Education I met one of the founders of Terrence Higgins Trust and worked as an AIDS/HIV educator for the NHS where of course I learned a lot about sexuality.

I went back into schools where I taught Biology for GCSE and A level, and spent some while teaching various subjects in FE colleges. I volunteered at a charity for street sex workers.

I eventually ended up teaching Science in an adolescent psychiatric unit. which was where the issue finally reached me as very mentally unwell girls were identifying as boys, and as their Biology teacher I was told I had to go along with this.

Luckily I was planning to retire soon anyway but that was really the catalyst, and then the JamJar happened although I wasn’t there I was firmly hooked into this cause.

I have emailed various people, met my MP (no joy there) read a huge amount, contributed to many discussions on social media particularly in my area of expertise which of course is the objective Biological reality of sex. I wrote a submission for the Oxford case (guidance now withdrawn). I have attended many events, and contributed to all the crowdfunders for legal cases. I also attend Raquel Rosario-Sanchez ‘s feminist meetings in Bristo (or did, before lockdown). I am a member of a small group affiliated to Safe Schools Alliance who are trying to get the Bristol secondary schools to look at the materials they use for PSHE, looking at their equities policies etc, and contacting two of the most worrying schools directly to ask to meet.

Stymied by Covid at the moment. luckily I have not been in danger of losing my job as I am retired. I have been shouted at in my NEU Samba Band that I have to agree TWAW, several people I know have been distinctly cooler in their reactions to me, local Labour people have accused me of being a bigot, and “knowing nothing about Biology”……

Some of my closer friends have asked me to not go on so much as I am passionate about getting the information and implications out to the public.

Alison W, Biologist, Health Educator, Teacher, Mother Grandmother

Categories
Healthcare Others

When archeologists uncover the bones of someone dead for thousands of years, their natal sex is easily discovered

I care about this issue because biology matters.  This is clearly demonstrated by the fact that when archeologists uncover the bones of someone dead for thousands of years, their natal sex is easily discovered.  This matters to me also because I am terrified for my grandchildren, that they may be exposed to the warped views of the ‘Gender’ army.

I have written to my MP to ask that she is raises her voice in ensuring there is no change to women’s rights to safe spaces and that the GRA legislation should not be passed without a great deal more consultation.  I have completed the Scottish Governments consultation on changes to the Gender rights Act.  This is particularly important as I live in Scotland.  I have also taken part in a demonstration against the proposed bill.

I have not spoken in a public arena about my views.

Donella, Granny, great granny, lesbian

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Healthcare Others

If we can’t talk about it, we cannot fight it

I care because the rights of women and girls matter. Our biology is the cause of our oppression and if we can’t talk about it, we cannot fight it. I care because children are being forced onto life long medical pathways.

I have marched, tweeted, had real life conversations, written to my MP (repeatedly), donated to crowdfunders, amplified the voices of others and committed to peak transing as many people as I can.

I have been called a cunt, bigot, nazi, bitch and TERF repeatedly. I have had my Twitter account suspended after mass reporting by TRAs. I have lost friends and followers.

Helen, Standing with women and girls

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Others

We can’t discuss the ways in which women are oppressed based on our biology

I care because I see women and their biological reality being erased. We can’t discuss the ways in which women are oppressed based on our biology if we can’t talk about it. Trans ideology reinforces harmful gender stereotypes and I feel strongly that these stereotypes should be abolished not upheld. I am concerned about the rise of trans ideology affecting young women.

I have a gender critical Instagram account to raise awareness.

I have been harassed and threatened on social media.

Helen , Irish woman living in the U.K., athenasowl

Categories
Healthcare Public Sector

It feels like just as we defeat climate denial then biology denial pops up

I’m particularly concerned on two fronts, first science denialism – biological sex is a material reality and very relevant to medical practice (my husband is a doctor). Females and males experience disease differently and so it is important to ensure that research and practice is able to continue to support this. It feels like just as we defeat climate denial then biology denial pops up. 

Secondly in sport – as a former university athlete I think it is vital that women’s sport is protected as a women’s space.

I struggled to make the team at my university and if biological males who had experienced male puberty and all the advantages that brings had been allowed to compete in the women’s team I’d have had no chance!

I also think it is vital that children are supported to accept themselves for who they are (which ironically is of course what TRAs say) surgery and what is essentially self harm is no way to support a child going through a difficult time. Transition may for a very few young adults be the way forward, but it is an adult decision.

I work for the Scottish Government (in an unrelated area) and so am concerned for my job! I do like tweets, but rarely retweet (there is also a requirement as a civil servant to remain objective and impartial and given the political nature of much of the debate I think it is right and proper that i remain fairly quiet). i have talked with some friends and colleagues about my concerns. I think if I did in a work environment my job may well be under threat.  

Caroline, pro science pro fair sport

Categories
Public Sector

Everyone has been appalled and disgusted

The protection of the biological definition of women and of women-only spaces, services and sports matter to me as I don’t want men in any place where I or any other woman or girl could be naked, semi-naked or vulnerable.  I want to restore clear, biology-based definitions of men and women.

I don’t think it is right to compel people to behave or speak in accordance with an ideology that they don’t believe in and which is prejudicial to the interests of women, girls and vulnerable adults.  The current situation seems to be a mix of a quasi-religion that allows no heresy and McCarthyism.  Freedom of speech is in danger.

I want to establish the principle that women have the right to say no to men’s demands and that women don’t have to sacrifice themselves to allow men to have what they want.

I have spoken to colleagues and other people I work with – in the high-profile, prestigious place I work there are lots of people who work there who are not employees of the organisation – about the implications of the organisation’s transgender policy which has been dictated by Stonewall. 

Some people have not understood the problem until I pointed it out.  Everyone has been appalled and disgusted.

HR are completely unresponsive on the transgender policy so I formally contacted a very senior (non-HR) member of the staff who I work with from time to time about the implications of the transgender policy.  He listened very kindly and seemed very concerned, but it turns out that he was mainly interested in whether I had been sexually harassed at work (I haven’t). 

However, the transgender policy has been amended, I assume as a result of my intervention to take out the passage “transgender people can have any sexual orientation.  For example, a transgender man (someone who lives as a man today) may be primarily attracted to other men (and identify as a gay man), may be primarily attracted to women (an identify as a straight man), or have any other sexual orientation”.  

The management evidently took notice when I pointed out that the passage made clear that they knew they were expecting people to change their clothes or use the toilet in the presence of heterosexual people of the other sex and that that could make them legally responsible for any harassment. Apart from that keeping the Stonewall Diversity Champion status and appearing woke seem to be much more important that the safety, privacy, dignity and peace of mind of the staff.

I follow gender critical organisations on Facebook and I used to comment on Twitter, but I got barred for speaking up for women.  I also comment on newspaper articles, primarily in the Times. 

I would have had qualms about doing so at work if I had any desire for promotion or if the criteria for my annual assessment were substantially subjective or if I had longer to go until I retire. I’ve also been very careful to keep all my complaints strictly formal and via my work IT network so that if harassment arises it will be possible to trace its source via the network.

I’ve been barred from Twitter and some of my comments on the Times have been deleted.

S, Adult human female

Categories
Others Parent

I’m made to feel like being a regular woman is a hateful thing in itself

I care because I am a woman, a woman with a daughter. Just like me my daughter is a “Tom boy”.

I never wanted to be a girl either it’s not fun. So I ran around with a group of mostly guy friends. However I still like boys so I would date.

When I was 15 years old I lost my virginity to my first real boyfriend. He must have thought that made him have some ownership over me. I was abused beaten and raped, threatened and very scared to move against him. He carefully separated me from my friends and family. He carefully destroyed me and any confidence I had.

As I got older I realized how dangerous some men really are to women. In a world that is made for men we are seen as lesser then. Anyone with a penis being in the same bathroom as me is scary. I don’t want to be scared in a bathroom or a dressing room. I also need a place to talk, having someone their who has or did have a penis would make me uncomfortable.

I’m not against Trans people. They 100% deserve safety and rights too! But why is it that for them to have rights women have to give away the safety we barely have. It feels like Trans women don’t understand and that might be because our experiences are not the same. That’s ok too.

But opening up women exclusive places because someone says they are a woman is very scary.

Biology is real! What about in sports? Will women have to compete with someone who has male biology? Just bc they call themselves a woman? It’s so not fair. This is not the society I wanted for my daughter. It’s also so confusing. I too spent my whole childhood wishing I was a boy. When my boobs came and I got my period I cried because I wanted to be a boy.

In today’s world, society would tell me to transition. But it would have been wrong for me. Now as a adult I know that I am who I am. I don’t have to change. I am a woman, a mother and I am a little rough around the edges. I keep my hair short. I dress how I want and my fiancé still loves me for me. If I had changed I never would have found my happiness.

I have tried my best to speak out on social media and raise other women up. Sadly there is a scary amount of opposition who don’t care about women’s rights they just want the title. They bring down a storm on your job, your family and everything they can attach to you. What a scary thing. Even if your boss agrees with you, they still have to fire you or lose their business!? That is terrifying.

This “agree with me or suffer the consequences” culture that’s happening. This “cancel culture” has moved to regular people. No longer does an angry mass demand a show be taken off the air.

Now they look at a small town mom and say, “agree with me or I will take everything from you”(it’s actually terrifying if you think about it.)

I’m also a artist so I use some of my art to send a message. It’s usually one drawing on black background and large vibrant words. I’m trying to reach out across the line and ask for thoughtful conversation instead of a angry swarm waiting to destroy on command. I’m no one’s enemy.

The consequences seem to be similar for everyone. Like I said before, even if I’m just asking for conversation or a debate to try and see the problems for what they are I am met with blind hate.

Like a swarm of angry bees waiting to sting whoever comes near their hive, we’re not allowed to touch this conversation. So I’ve had hateful slurs thrown at me. Long time friends have unfriended me and I’m made to feel like being a regular woman is a hateful thing in itself.

C. Mutt, I’m a mom and a Artist. My nature is to love and Create. I believe all people have the Right to be safe, happy and live their best life, USA