I can understand why. As trans and gender diversity has become a regular topic of public debate and a favoured target of rightwing attacks, feminist critics have joined the fray.
That has put trans and feminist activists on a seemingly unrelenting path of mutual antagonism. Trans rights have been pitted against sex-based rights for “real” women, with conflict forever spiralling into charge and countercharge of hate speech and silencing, and into bitter social media wars.
Frustratingly, this conflict has become the dominant media story of trans and feminism, especially in a viciously divided UK.
Actually, the UK isn’t divided upon this at all. Among the 65 million the modal reaction is if you want to wear a frock laddie then that’s your right, working the other way it’s possibly a bit odd to want your tits cut off but if you really say so then no skin off my nose, is it?
The UK, in the way that life is lived on the ground, has long been an astonishingly liberal place that is. Perhaps not publicly and in pride and celebration but incidences of the tweed wearing, pipe smoking, chapess and her friend being chased by the mob are alarmingly thin on the ground.The same has been true of the LG bits too – Oscar Wilde’s problem was trying to make a libel issue of it, before that the last dobbed in for being different was when, 1840s? The street and the horses comment resonates down the century simply because it has long been the national attitude.
Not quite the current story I know but still.
The thing actually being talked about in The Guardian is the conversation in academia. Which, as we all know given that the importance is so small, is vicious. Add to that the well known female propensity for calm, rational discussion entirely free from any emotional overtones and we’ve managed to entirely describe what is happening.
The UK simply isn’t divided upon this and hasn’t been for many a generation. The little enders and the big enders, that’s another story, but who cares about them?