If We’re Transphobic, It’s Only Because the Actions of Transwomen Are Scaring Us.

I never thought of myself as transphobic up till this point. I’ve often been called it, yes, for meekly suggesting that sex segregation is there for a reason….but I’ve never believed I actually was scared of transpeople till now.

Not all transpeople, naturally. Because not all transpeople go out of their way to intimidate women. But the actions of a certain type of transactivist have become yes, scary. And women are genuinely fearing for their safety.

Let’s look at the events last week in Bristol. Women were gathering for a talk called “We Need to Talk About Sex”, which sought to discuss the Gender Recognition Act in a calm and secure environment. The TRAs got wind of it and stormed the venue, protesting outside and on the staircase inside, blocking women from entering. Veteran feminist Julie Bindel, who has been battling this battle since at least 2010, shared a video of the masked transwomen on the stairs, their arms and legs stretched out across the stairwell. Every so often one of them makes a swipe for her phone. “Misgendering is violence” they cry, justifying their actions through their deeply ingrained trans philosophy.

Misgendering isn’t violence. Misgendering is upsetting for transpeople, traumatic even, but it’s not violence. What was happening in that stairwell — people born with the innate strength of a male, using their bodies to intimidate women — is pretty darn close to violence. What happened at Speakers’ Corner, where 60-year old feminist Maria MacLachlan was punched by a transwoman, was actual violence. Imagine for a second that you’re a woman who’s ever been in a situation that’s out of your control and that lack of control has been caused by a man. Maybe it was being groped in a moshpit where you were trapped and couldn’t walk away. Maybe it was being mugged late at night, your handbag stolen with such force that it rips your fingernails. How would that woman feel in a situation like the one at the Jam Jar, where the way ahead and behind were both blocked? Intimidated? Terrified? “Triggered”?

Now use a massive stretch of the imagination and think about how that description might apply to pretty much any woman ever. How very few women have got to adulthood without ever feeling trapped or physically threatened by a man. This is why the actions of transwomen are grossly unfair. They have grown up always having the strength and the privilege and now they are using that to try and stop women from talking to each other.

And I, for one, am frightened. Too frightened to blog under my real name or on my usual site in case I receive one of the many death and rape threats doled out to women deemed to be trans-exclusionary. Too scared to air my views on Facebook or in real life in case my friends turn against me. Definitely too scared to hold an event which even skirts around the GRA issue. Hosting an IWD event a few months back, I held my breath in case a bunch of transwomen turned up and demanded to be given the microphone or make us suffer the consequences.

I fear for the safety of my kids if I was to speak out publicly online. I fear for my own safety. I watched that video with my heart in my throat, knowing that I would never be as bold as Julie Bindel. Even though the masked protestors looked like they were barely out of puberty, they would still have a physical advantage over the middle-aged women attending and they’ve proved before that they’re not afraid to bring online threats into the real world.

So it’s come to this. Lefty liberal feminists who would have made natural allies to the trans movement have come to fear them. Because of their relentlessness in pushing into women’s spaces. Because they think that the “violence” of using the wrong pronouns justifies the violence of punching a woman in the face. We’ve tried to have a rational discussion but it’s all gone so far past that. I applaud my sisters who are brave enough to speak out but I’m staying underground for now. It seems the only safe way.