GRA: Committee Stage. Day 1

Gender Recognition Act:Parliamentary Scrutiny

This is part of a series on the GRA following its progress through the parliamentary process to try to understand how so many parliamentarians were captured by this ideology.

Here is the full transcript of day one:

Day 1 Official Report of the Grand Committee on the GRA

Definitions

For those of you with left wing sensibilities prepare yourself for Norman Tebbit speaking a lot of sense. He is not a closet radical feminist, his interventions are primarily motivated by opposition to same sex marriage. However, a byproduct of his motivation was a determination to seek clarity on definitions around ”sex” and ”gender”. He is not alone in this preoccupation. Overall there was little consideration of women, in general, with the exception of the of the impact on spouses who were mainly wives.

Norman kicked off proceedings with this amendment: He makes it clear his intention is to “smoke out” the Government’s definition of both ”sex” and ”gender”. Tebbit then follows up with dictionary definition; which sadly was not the rallying call of Adult Human Female.

He gives a passing nod to feminist thinking. It is not clear if he believes feminists are responsible for the mess in which we now find ourselves: 👇

Tebbit proposed an amendment that only if someone’s chromosomes were, unambiguously, of the sex aspired to could a GRC be issued. Clearly this was intended to make a point there was no serious chance of getting sufficient agreement. He emphasises that he does not wish to allow the government to hide between the euphemism of ”gender” when the legislation is a redefinition of “sex” in law, irrespective of biological fact. His next statements make it clear that his concern is with not allowing same sex marriage. Lord Filkin responds to Tebbit:

Lord Filkin will be picked up about the ”inconclusive evidence” later.

For posterity here are the groups who had provided advice/support for this amendment.

It’s well worth reading up on the British Psychological Society. I was so horrified at the documents they produced I did a series on their pronouncements.

British Psychological Society

Lord Filkin elaborates on the role of the EHRC in propelling the U.K parliament to legislate on this issue and shares snippets from a court case (Bellinger & Bellinger). Here is one which introduces the idea of a “feminine” psyche unmooored from our sexed bodies.

For reasons of space I won’t include every instance of parliamentarians claiming this will only impact a small number of people, we know how that turned out. Nowhere in this committee stage does anyone directly challenge the fact that women are being redefined, in law, based on men’s feelings. This has more impact on the female sex than females claiming a male identity for reasons rooted in SEXism, something we seem to have disregarded in the last decade.

Lord Carlile interjects to imply Tebbit is indulging in a bit of moral panic and then Baroness O’Cathlain questions the evidence base for the legislation: 👇

Lord Filkin regards the aetiology of transsexualism as a side issue so we will search in vain for any understanding of autogynephilia (a sexual paraphilia) as a motive for transition. He outlines the process the Gender Recognition Panel will follow to determine if someone has met the criteria for a GRC which contains the ”real life” test; which requires an applicant to “live as a woman”, whatever that means. He forgets about the requirment for a diagnosis of ”Gender Dysphoria” and is given a helpful reminder by another member. This is portrayed as a difficult hurdle to surmount. (Worth pointing out that we are now handing out drugs and surgeries on the flimsiest of assessments, because of the ”affirmation only” model of, putative, ”care”.)

Baroness O’Cathlain was a Conservative peer who was also motivated by concern about same sex marriage but she drops some truth bombs here. Language which, I fear, we may never hear in parliament again.

The Baroness is also keen to dispel any notion that this is related to an “intersex” condition. 👇 She also made sure to get it on record that the bill does not mandate surgery; leading to the absurd proposition that a “woman” can be in possession of a penis, with all the implications this has for women’s privacy, dignity and safety.

She was not wrong. The ”ghastly social and cultural situation” is here.

There follows some discussion about why the decision to allow pre-operative males, to be classed as women, was taken. It mainly focussed “rare” cases, for medical reasons, and it’s unclear whether this is a genuinely held belief or an attempt to convey that impression. A Bishop intervenes to express surprise the Law Lords have adopted a philosophical position in relation to a ”female psyche”. There follows a question as to why the draft bill says a man with a GRC would be treated as the opposite sex ”for all purposes” and one about why the bill switches between “gender” and “sex”.

Lord Filkin responds as follows:

Sport

There is a long section on the implications for competitive sport. Lord Moynian makes the point that all the sporting bodies he contacted were keen for an exemption for sport. The answers here lack clarity and also appear contradictory. A hypothetical question is posed about a male, athlete, who wishes to continue to compete, as a male, in the two year waiting period for a Gender Recognition Certificate, whilst ”living as a woman”. This was seen as a matter for the Gender Recognition Panel.

He is then given an assurance that transsexual’s can be legitimately excluded from playing on female teams if they are not ”physiologically appropriate” At this point Lord Tebbit interjects to raise the issue of privacy clauses.

Sex is a biological fact, gender a social pose:

Lord Filkin is clearly getting rattled by this stage and Tebbit thinks he understands why, he believes the Noble Lord is defensive because he feels the ground beneath his feet is slippy.

The issue of sport is not resolved to another member’s satisfaction and he draws the conclusion that Sporting bodies need to be exempted from the bill.

“Lived Experience”

It is in the discussion about sport that we come nearest to covering the issue of imposing these men on women’s spaces, where single sex changing rooms have been the norm. By requiring a ”real life experience” test these men are being imposed on women whose own rights have been disregarded. 👇. Here the Minister’s own words are quoted back at him as he claims female changing rooms have always been open to ”transsexuals” adding the rather naive statement about their concern not to cause alarm of offence.

Trans Widows.

Baroness Buscombe makes a valiant attempt to introduce some voice for the wives and children, of men applying for a GRC. It is, however, made clear that the bill is intended to legislate for the transsexual. It was felt it would generate unnecessary conflict if the spouse was allowed to make representations to the Gender Recognition Panel. These women would be required to annul their marriage. The proposition leads to the absurdity that a marriage contracted by a man and a woman is now regarded as a same sex marriage and must be dissolved. At the same time if a man obtains a GRC he is allowed to contract a marriage with a male because he is now a ”legal” woman! In the desire to avoid legislating for same sex marriage they have actually delegitimised some opposite sex marriages and allowed some same sex marriages!

Below, 👇 the Bishop is right about the way trans rights have been prioritised but he fails to identify the main “people” whose rights have been handed over this category of males: The government have not only given rights to these males they have removed them from women. We no longer have single sex spaces if men can identify into them.

They did not even plan for the revocation of GRCs, in the event of fraud. In my city there is a man with a conviction for attempted rape, of a female, who tours prisons to talk about LGBT Issues . He remains a ”legal woman”.

A few members raise the issue of revocation for someone who changed his mind. The issue of detransitioners has always been an issue but now, with the lack of gatekeeping, we have over 26,000 on the reddit, detrans, forum. Currently if you wish to claim back your biological sex you have to apply to the Gender Recognition Panel. Since that requires a diagnosis of ”Gender Dysphoria” it is particularly awkward. Clinicians have a vested interest in withholding that diagnosis to minimise the scandal of medical mal-practice.

We criminalised telling the truth!

I will leave day one with this from Norman Tebbit:

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