The expulsion of Heather Brunskell-Evans.
This is the fourth post on W.E.P following their vote to accept men who self-identify as women. You can read the series here: 👇
This one will focus on an episode of the moral maze, from 2017, which BBC licence holders can listen to here: 👇
This was the Composition of the panel:
These were the witnesses who were called :
Part two covered Fae and Caspian and part three covered Stephen Whittle. I decided to devote an entire another post to Heather.
Buerk introduces the final witness, Dr Heather Brunskell-Evans, a research fellow at Kings College London, author of the book Transgender Children and young people (image below) Buerk adds that Heather is a feminist campaigner and then launches into questions,
Buerk notes that the “trans lobby” calls Brunskell-Evans a “terf” , a trans-exclusionary, radical feminist and adds “What does that mean and why don’t they like you?”.
Heather responds by explaining that this term is perjorative and that she is not alone in attracting the slur, “terf”; it is applied to anyone not accepting the “trans” doctrine. She also points out that she does not exclude anyone and is comfortable with people claiming the identity of “trans”. Heather also points out that the book 👈 is jointly edited by Professor Michele Moore.
(I have seen Moore talk live and also her WPUK talk. If you have not seen this talk, by Moore, I can highly recommend it : 👇
Mona Sidddiqui then asks “Why do you think so many, liberal minded, progressive, young people are buying into the “transgender doctrine” as you put it?” (Loaded question). Heather responds that she actually finds transgender doctrine reactionary, that both girls and boys should be allowed to dress how they wish but what we are witnessing is a new social narrative around gender non conforming behaviour that says if a boy likes to wear dresses he is literally a girl. Mona then asks what if it is more than that and the boy says he doesn’t feel right in this body? Brunskell-Evans says a genuinely progressive society a boy should be allowed to display gender non-confirming behaviour in the body he is in. These children have always existed but we are developing a new language to describe them. (Siddiqui repeatedly tries to interrupt and speak over Heather but she persists.
Mona now asks :
Heather can be heard disagreeing with the claim that the phenomena of the trans-identity emergin in the last ten, twenty years. The “transgender” child is most definitely a recent invention. I think Professor Siddiqui is confusing people with disorders of sexual development with people who identify as “trans”.
Heather agrees that people need rights but Siddiqui makes the counter argument that Heather is constraining those right by saying a boy who likes to wear a dress should not reassign his body. Heather responds by saying we should be allowed to be as we wish without making it a problem of the male body or the female body; Telling a small child that there is something not quite right with its body it’s actually got the brain of the other sex creates a harmful narrative and it’s actually abusive.
Now Matthew Turner. This question would have been an excellent question to ask of the “trans” identifying witnesses but, instead, he asks it of Heather. (Turner is the CEO of the NHS Confederation now which is an interesting move from the Royal Society of Arts.)
Turner gets Heather to agree with the premise of alleviating human suffering and then makes this, astonishing, pronouncement. The policing of women’s bodies and the rigidity of beauty standards, for women, are worse now than I have ever known. He has no idea!
Heather interjects to point out that we always make choices within social norms.
Ah, I see where he was going with this. He thinks that the social norms don’t dictate that men have to be “masculine” and women “feminine” so if people still feel their body doesn’t align with their “gender” surely they should be allowed to align their body with their “gender”. Yet he doesn’t see that both boys and girls are being told that if they don’t conform to the Barbie or Ken mode of being they might just be “born in the wrong body”. He has no idea!
Heather responds to say that the problem with this debate is people are categorised and pro-trans or anti-trans. Heather emphasises that Adult’s should be free to claim a personal identity but the problem is we are extending this to children. We need a public debate and an examination of the “science” ; especially claims that there are male brains and female brains.
Matthew then asks her to specify the age at which a person can make these choices. Heather refuses to provide an age. She reiterates that the kind thing to do is to allow the child to experiment with their identity but it’s incumbent on adults, who are responsible for the child’s welfare not to go along with the narrative (that they could be born in the wrong body).
For the views expressed in this interview Heather was reported to the Women’s Equality Party and subjected to a three month long investigation. Here is the list of allegations.
The identity of the complainants is kept confidential but one member did comment on a Women’s Place U.K. meeting at which Heather spoke. Many of us have had abuse from this individual. Toni is a late transitioning, married, heterosexual man; who calls himself a “Lesbian”. Something tells me he is an Absolutely Genuine Person or AGP, for short.
I assume this is the WPUK event in question.
The Women’s Equality Party upheld the complaints and stripped Dr Brunskell-Evans of her party role. She left the party as many of us did. You can read her own account here 👇 and you will also find a wealth of information on her website.
I will do a round up of the panel’s deliberations in a final post.
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