Colette Colfer: A New Religion

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From top: Trans Pride parade in Dublin in 2019; Colette Colfer

I’ve been lecturing on world religions for sixteen years. Prior to this, I worked as a journalist and often wrote articles and made radio programmes about Ireland’s changing religious landscape.

As someone who is hugely interested in religion, I have noticed that as the Catholic Church is declining in importance in Ireland, new belief systems are emerging to take up some of the spaces vacated. One of these in particular – gender identity theory – is rising to prominence and quickly becoming dominant.

Gender identity theory involves the belief that gender is an identity or an internal sense of self that is independent of the physical body. Some suggest that gender identity rather than biological sex should take precedence in matters of law, society, and culture. This theory is used, for example, to justify the argument that biological males who identify as women should compete in the women’s category in sports.

I study religion from what is called a phenomenological perspective. This involves bracketing off my own personal beliefs in order to try to understand religion from the believer’s perspective without judging their claims to truth. The approach can be summed up by the words of Ninian Smart who wrote ‘god is real for Christians, whether he exists or not’.

Over the past twenty years, the phenomenological approach has worked well for me. I have travelled to Pakistan where I visited Islamic madrassas. I’ve stuck pieces of paper into cracks of the Western Wall in Jerusalem, visited the West Bank and Bethlehem, gone on two Holocaust study trips to Auschwitz. I’ve participated in Zen Buddhist retreats and in Hindu festivals. I’ve attended African Pentecostal services in industrial estate warehouses, fasted for Ramadan and broke the fast with Muslims in mosques.

I’ve been to Sabbath services in Dublin synagogues and have meditated at ‘Dzogchen Beara’, the Buddhist retreat centre in west Cork. I’ve stayed with the nuns at Glencairn monastery in County Waterford and participated in a pagan Mayday celebration on the Hill of Tara which involved scattering white rose petals on a pentagram with its lines chalked out on grass. I’ve danced with witches in Clonegal Castle in County Wexford and peered into the holy well in the castle dungeon which, at the time, was a ‘Temple of Isis’. I’ve interviewed members of Atheist Ireland and the Church of Scientology.

People from all these religions and belief systems permitted me to enter their worlds with no compulsion on me to participate or to believe. Yet today, in Ireland, when it comes to gender identity theory, it is becoming difficult to adopt the phenomenological perspective as there is increasing pressure to accept this theory uncritically.

Although there is no concept of the divine in gender identity theory, there are elements that could be considered religious. There are symbols, chants, flags, parades, and ‘holy’ days. There is a belief in what could be termed transubstantiation where the substance of the body is believed to change from one sex to another. A belief in gender identity involves a level of faith as there is nothing tangible to prove its existence which, as something divorced from the physical body, is similar to the idea of a soul.

The idea of a heretic or infidel is also relevant. People and organisations who don’t subscribe to gender identity theory, or who publicly criticise or even question it, have been denounced or ostracised, and products and publications boycotted. Detransitioners, who no longer subscribe to the theory, are akin to apostates.

The theory also involves a moral code and a creed that centers around concepts of equality, diversity, and inclusion. There is a clergy in the form of people from organisations who promote the theory and who give ‘sermons’ in training and workshops. Some people signal their adherence to the theory by using certain words or phrases or by including pronouns (such as ‘he/him’) in email signatures or on online public profiles.

Gender identity theory is increasingly evident in Irish government policies and publications. One questionnaire recently published by the Higher Education Authority of Ireland asked ‘What gender (if any) do you most identify with?’ but had no question about biological sex.

The Central Statistics Office of Ireland advised people filling in the 2022 Census form that they could tick both male and female if they were uncomfortable choosing one.

The Irish Blood Transfusion Service has asked blood donors to tick ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the question ‘Your: current gender different from that assigned to you at birth?’ Training and workshops on gender identity have been rolled out through all levels of the education system.

To suggest that gender identity theory is a new religion is not to denigrate the theory. My aim, as a phenomenologist, is to understand the belief and its associated practices without making value statements about its truth.I understand that gender identity is real for people who believe in it.

However, I am concerned by how quickly and deeply this theory is becoming embedded at the government level and what appears to me to be an increasing compulsion to believe.

Colette Colfer is a lecturer in world religions at Waterford Institute of Technology (soon to be the South East Technological University, or SETU). Colette can be followed on twitter @colettecolfer.

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427 thoughts on “Colette Colfer: A New Religion

  1. Sara

    Religion is the belief in an Omipotent Higher Power. It is not belief in general. Colfer should do some basic research.

    Reply
      1. jonjoker

        It’s good to know that Buddhism isn’t a religion, according to Sara, as they don’t worship or even believe in a god.
        Which is fine I suppose.
        I wonder if Sara knows of any other religions that aren’t religions?

        Reply
    1. Gavin

      Nah doesn’t always have to be an Omnipotent Higher Power.

      Religions are belief systems that relate humanity to spirituality. The following definition from Wikipedia provides a good overview of the many dimensions of religion:
      Religion is a collection of cultural systems, belief systems, and worldviews that relate humanity to spirituality and, sometimes, to moral values

      Reply
      1. Sara

        She’s a lecturer in SETU, hardly a first-rate or even a second-rate institution for religious studies (whatever about technology).

        Reply
          1. jonjoker

            Hughie, I suppose yourself and Sara have Masters degrees from Oxford.
            Handed out a year after graduation with a BA on payment of a fee.

            One of the most over-rated institutions in the world; along with TCD who do, or used to do, the same.

        1. Jack

          Yes because as everyone knows you must work at the educational institution which is known for your specialised area of interest. Oh bloody give over ‘Sara’, and with your other trolling BS below, making up blatant lies and looking up peoples names where they live, what they do and then saying ‘oooh you’re poo an I know where ye live!’ Get a bleedin grip. WE SEE YOU. Back under your bridge with ye.

          Reply
      2. Jack

        Exactly. An excellent article by an expert in her field. Well done Colette! I work in this area and can certainly attest to being told that if I don’t comply (‘believe’) then I’m hateful. Sorry, but if you’re a lipsticked and bearded hairy ass dude who calls himself Lilith or Delilah (common trans names) and goes by she/her, or claim to be ‘Gourd gender’ with pump/kin pronouns that’s great knock yourself out-but don’t expect me to believe it and adhere to it too. Feck all the way off with that shite.

        Reply
    2. Richard

      I’ve done some basic research. I’ve looked up “religion” in the Oxford English Dictionary. One of the more common meanings is “[a] particular system of faith and worship” and that seems to cover Ms Colfer’s subject matter nicely.

      Reply
        1. Estelle

          In our schools, health services, third level institutions. In the arts. In BeLonGTo, in TENI and in any place or institution where these organisations have acted as ‘consultants’ or ‘advisers’.

          Reply
          1. NobleLocks

            Ahh yes, TENI.

            A company pretending to be a charity, run by men pretending to be women, with advice that pretends to be fair, kind and grounded in reality.

          2. Sara

            In the same way that I wouldn’t go to a quack in Dublin 8 to learn about yoga, I wouldn’t go to you to learn about trans issues. The article above is just uninformed bigoted hate.

        2. Jan Rivers

          On the many dedicated days eg trans remembrance day, pride month and more generally by incantation ‘trans women are women’ ‘assigned male/female at birth’.

          Reply
        3. Colette Colfer

          Where does anyone worship ‘Christianity’? People don’t worship the religion itself. I pointed out in the piece that there isn’t a supernatural being.

          Reply
    3. Jan Rivers

      Not so. Buddhism has no higher power. The definition of religion, or the etymology rather has to do with something that binds people together.

      Reply
    4. Jill

      Of course it’s just a belief, there’s no proof of the existence of “gender identity”. In adults it appears for the most part to be a belief of heterosexual autogynephilic men (hence their interest in calling themselves “lesbians”.) Children by contrast are likely to have been groomed into the belief through the efforts of the relentless lobbyists into a flight from whatever psychological anguish they may be experiencing. Why would any decent adult seek to medicalise children who will simply change their minds as they mature?

      Reply
    5. Tony

      I suspect she knows what religion is, given her job. Not sure you read the article carefully. It’s the role of religion in the religious believer’s life that parallels gender ideology. And also the attitude towards apostates…

      By the way religion is not belief in an Omnipotent Higher Power – happy to discuss this as someone who has been teaching Religious Studies since 1983.

      Reply
      1. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

        I agree, my religion is running, (and I’m always trying to covert the unwilling) fast cars, good food and loose loose rides/ or as they prefer to be called, sexy men

        Reply
    6. K. Cavan

      Incorrect, Sara, Theism is belief in a God, Religion is any belief system based on Faith, rather than Rationality.

      Reply
        1. K. Cavan

          Barbie is female, Sara but you refer to me in the masculine. I think I see the root of your problem here, well, one of them anyway, if you’re incapable of even delivering insults within the correct gender.
          Encyclopedia, how quaint.

          Reply
    7. Colette Colfer

      Later in this thread you state that this piece is ‘uninformed bigoted hate’ – can you please point out exactly where there is any hate or bigotry in this article? It seems to me that this type of phrase is the way to condemn the ‘heretic’. I said clearly in the piece that I do understand that for some people gender identity is real. I have no problem with that at all. I just do not think everyone should be forced to believe. That is not hate. That is not bigotry. I am not an expert on trans issues. I was speaking from the perspective of someone who studies religions.

      Reply
      1. Sara

        You equate trans civil rights with preternatural belief systems. You have a history of bigoted opinion, so I’m not going down that road, you well know yourself. Though I am glad you admit your ignorance when it comes to trans issues. Perhaps rather than writing about what know nothing about, you could keep your counsel, or do some actual research. I know both options might be difficult for you. If I were marking your article as a postgrad essay it would get a low third.

        Reply
        1. Colette Colfer

          My history of bigoted opinions? I’m guessing you are saying this because I have said that I am a woman because my body makes me a woman. I understand that this is considered a bigoted thing to state regardless of the fact that this is how most people understand womanhood. It is not bigoted for me to state this – despite what you claim. I think trans people should have the same rights as everyone. I welcome open discussion and debate and civil conversation. I genuinely want to engage and to understand. The reason I wrote this piece is because so many people are afraid of being cast as ‘heretics’ and it struck me that of all of the religions I’ve studied, and of all of the different belief systems I’ve encountered, I’ve never felt compelled to believe until now. Why is it that so many people who are invested in gender identity theory cannot accept that some people simply do not subscribe to the theory? is it okay, do you think, for people to have different opinions on this?

          Reply
          1. Sara

            A while ago I had the misfortune to be introduced to you at a wine reception. After you’d regaled me with a history of the prizes you had won, you started a monologue on Jung. I think that’s your problem. You’ll never get beyond Jung, you’ll never get beyond essentialism. You’ve made yourself immune to intelligent thought. After Jung came your gossip on radio personalities. Thankfully I was rescued at that point. A piece of advice: before talking about trans issues get to know the issues. You admit your ignorance on the matter, fine, but at least think before you write. Draw your eyes up from your navel, and read some books, talk to some trans people.

          2. Nigel

            Tell me what exactly is it about the debate in this comment section that makes you think that there are people worried that it’s not okay to have different opinions on this subject?

        2. Colette Colfer

          Sara, that’s very strange you met me at a wine reception as I don’t go to wine receptions – I can’t stand them. Also, I don’t usually talk to people about any awards. I feel very uncomfortable talking about myself in general. And Jung is pretty niche so I certainly wouldn’t be speaking about Jung to anyone unless they were specifically interested in him. And you say radio personalities?? That’s hilarious. I don’t talk about radio personalities – I don’t even have opinions on ‘radio personalities’. If you’d like to state which wine reception you are thinking of I’m sure the readers would be very interested to hear… then I can 100% clarify as to whether or not I was there. Honestly – your comment made me laugh because it is so outlandish and so not me. Anyone who knows me would know this. But I do need to state this publicly so people know that you are making things up.

          Reply
          1. Sara

            If you’re denying that you were at a wine reception, then I can’t help you. Either you’ve developed a memory problem, or you’ve forgot about WIT? As for you feeling uncomfortable about talking about yourself, you were non-stop that night. Just like the article you wrote above, it’s not really about anything more than Colette wanting to be a heretical martyr, the centre of attention. Most people in Ireland, I’d guess, share you bigoted views on the trans community. You’re not a heretic, you’re an arch conformist. You come to the debate admitting your ignorance, and rather than respect the conversation by having the decency to do some research, you frame youself centre of the article, because what matters in life more than Colette?

          2. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            ummm kinda unfair and weird to anonymously say you have met someone while being so unpleasant, I mean is your real name Sara ?

        3. Colette Colfer

          Hi Sara, thanks for clarifying it was a WIT event – could you tell me which one it was? Or even the year or where it took place? I’m guessing you can’t as I’ve never gone to a WIT wine reception in my 16 years I’ve been working there. It’s so hilarious that you are making all this stuff up. You are proving my argument precisely – I am not a ‘believer’. I respect those who do believe but simply because I do not myself subscribe to gender identity theory you are trying to take me down. Why not engage with the ideas rather than trying to portray me as someone I am not? Also, I do research. Again – simply because I do not personally subscribe to the theory does not mean I do not research. Researching can often lead someone to question. I’ve asked if you can accept it when people do not ‘believe’? Genuinely – can you accept anyone who doesn’t believe? Or must we all comply?

          Reply
          1. Sara

            Ok. If you can’t even tell the truth on this, I’m not going to bother. Prince Andrew doesn’t sweat, and Colette didn’t attend a WIT wine reception.

          2. Jack

            Ye know what Colette, “Sara” is a troll, and clearly lying. Hilarious that they’ve shown that so clearly how, again – really interesting article and thank you for it! Always great to get informed expert opinions on current discourse.
            As for “Sara”, fantastic input. Being shitty to and lying about someone because you don’t have the ability to critically engage is, well, it’s boring.

          3. Tom Paulson

            Colette

            Anyone reading this will be able to see who is making calm and measured arguments, and who is making wild, unsubstantiated, personal attacks. I’d just let Sara carry on if I were you, nobody is taking any of it seriously.

      2. K. Cavan

        Collette, Sara is a cliché-ridden cliché. Having read some of her terse communications, you now know exactly what opinions she’s in receipt of, on any given subject.

        Reply
  2. Broadbag

    That’s all fine and dandy, but has she seen attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion?

    As preambles go, that’s got to be one of the most torturous, just spit it out lady, you dislike trans people. Clearly happy to embed herself in all sorts of cultures and with believers of various religions, but has she ever just hung out with trans people and listened to them and given them a chance, if not it’s a false equivalence.

    Reply
    1. NobleLocks

      By trans people do you mean:

      People who have actually been diagnosed with sexual dysphoria? – A tiny, tiny minority…
      People who are suffering from complex mental health issues including all or nothing thinking? A worryingly high number of ROGD kids…
      The remaining est. 80%+ who are actually Autogynephiles who are using “trans” as a cloak and emotional blackmail to groom society into participation with their sexual paraphilia?

      Reply
      1. Broadbag

        Sure, all of the above, whatever you’re having yourself. If you too hate trans people just come out and say it – at least your preamble was snappier. Personally I’m not sure about trans people, but try to find some empathy for their situation rather than call them mentally ill or perverts.

        Getting back to this article though, I think her argument is very flimsy and to suggest that certain religions don’t push their beliefs on people or become hostile to infidels is disingenuous. To say all these people I met didn’t push it is fine, but how many trans people has she met that were pushing her to get on board their train of thought or calling her a heretic?

        Reply
        1. NobleLocks

          Ahh that’s all very 2018 of you. That kind of All trans are the same.. they’re all victims… poor poor trans people. Accuse anyone that criticises of “Hatred” Yes, very 2018 and very childish too. You’re going to have to do better.

          DSM5 is as clear as day about dysphoria. It is a mental illness. If you want to take that as a pejorative then that’s your take. Not mine.

          Trans is not an identity, there is no third gamete. Trans is something that people DO, it is not something that people Are.

          You have clearly decided that when you hear the word Trans you conjure up victim. Tell me, how many victims do you see here: https://transcrimeuk.com/ Is there any particular victim here that really needs empathy? The Murderers? The Child rapists and abusers? The child torturers? The bestiality and animal rapists? The explosives terrorists? Which one is your favourite? hmmm? And that’s just for the UK, you should see the ones for the USA.

          It is amazing to me how many woke people are asleep at the wheel.

          Reply
          1. Nigel

            You know there’s a term for when you make a particular group responsible for, or claim they’re complicit with, the misdeeds and crimes of individuals within that group.

            Because if you do, I guarantee you’re not ready for what ciscrimes.com would say about you.

          2. Clampers Outside

            You do that kinda thing all the time Nigel. “You people”, or “right-wingers” or “whites” etc are all, and just a few examples of, the catch all phrases you use to describe entire groups of people

          3. Broadbag

            ”It is a mental illness. If you want to take that as a pejorative then that’s your take. Not mine.”

            Are you saying mental illness is a good thing?

          4. Mr .T

            Mental illness is not a pejorative it is a group of medical conditions that should not be stigmatised.

          5. Broadbag

            Agreed, stigma is bad. Also, no-one wants to be mentally ill or indeed physically ill, illness is not a positive or something to aspire to.

          6. Nigel

            Can’t remember the last time I accused ‘you people’ or ‘whites’ of being rapists. Right wingers are just deplorable, though.

          7. Clampers Outside

            So, all right wingers are deplorables.
            You’ve also said all right wingers don’t care about the sick, the poor, the ill firm, etc just a week or so ago and laid claim that left wingers do.

            You’re like a child.
            Bless.

          8. Nigel

            Yes, Clampers, but I based that assertion on the empirical evidence of right wing health care policy. Obviously you find that sort of thing childish. Or perhaps you mean teenagerish.

            Given the propensity of people supposedly on the left to willingly fall for pandemic-truther conspiracy theories, however, my assessment of the left should be amended.

          9. Clampers Outside

            Not all right wingers voted for it.

            It’s like me saying all Greens are responsible for green initiatives, even the ones that destroyed ecosystems and landscapes such as the wind farm that caused the massive landslide.
            By your reckoning I can blame you for that…. Which is idiotic. But that is you all over, in fairness.

        2. Linda Jones

          Yes, for centuries, dominant religions (ones backed by the power of the state) forced their beliefs on all, often on pain of death as heretics or of ostracism. As convictions in metaphysical belief systems declined, a secular society developed that proposed reasoned debate on state laws and rejected imposition of particular religious views (or any specific beliefs) on other people. We are free to believe what we want without being persecuted and that freedom depends on allowing other people the same right. Yes, laws are made according to the moral convictions of the majority but that does not in itself mean minority opinions can be outlawed or persecuted. If that were so, there would never be any possibility to challenge or change existing laws. This system is quite recent in human history. It is especially recent in Ireland.

          Reply
          1. benblack

            You do know that, since the garden of Eden episode, the human species, as a whole, has been regressing and not progressing?

            This latest iteration has been founded on disorder upon disorder.

          2. K. Cavan

            Linda, Woke Ideology is backed by the power of the Legacy Media, the Social Media & Tech giants, Academia, Education & the Corporate World, in addition to the State & deviation from its norms very much involves being outlawed & persecuted. The Catholic Church never approached such an iron grip on society & has, itself, fallen under the Wokists’ influence & control.
            The principle of seperation of Church & State has been widespread in Western society for centuries but no such seperation exists between Woke & State. The USA never had a State Religion, previously, now it does.

      1. Estelle

        You found this article ‘unreadable’, yet it’s the article’s author, a highly qualified academic, former journalist and poet who’s ‘as thick as a ditch’? Okeedokee.

        Reply
          1. Eliza Mann

            I find it very strange that anyone would claim that this eloquent article is “unreadable.” Can you please explain what was hard for you to read/understand? So far no one has managed to convincingly criticize Colfer’s main points–that gender identity ideology has many similarities to religious systems, but that, unlike the various religious communities she has studied, its adherents do not seem to accept others’ skepticism. Furthermore, this belief system has managed to become dominant in many institutions with little pushback, which strikes Colfer as not only unique but also worrying. Please correct me if you think these are not your central points, Colette. And if anyone wants to take a stab at refuting those actual points, rather than attacking the author, please do!

          1. K. Cavan

            I think, Colette, that Mad disagrees with something you wrote, is unable to articulate what that might be, so declares your piece unreadable, sidestepping the need to explain.
            Quite clever, in a Mad way.

          2. Colette Colfer

            Eliza – I am only seeing your comment now. I don’t fully know how to work this site and now my reply (about projection) to something someone else said earlier looks like a response to your comment (which doesn’t have a reply button thing on it). Yes yes and yes to your points. Thank you for putting it so concisely

    2. jonjoker

      You seem to feel that the matter is beyond discussion. Surely this is a trait held by a great many religions, each of which puts forward their system as being self-evidently correct and cannot and must not be questioned.

      To me it looks like you are helping her to prove her point.

      Reply
      1. Clampers Outside

        That point has been demonstrated through the “no debate” tactic taken by the trans lobby as documented by the legal firm Denton’s.

        Reply
    3. Gnous

      You can’t just hang out with trans people, that’s the point. If you try to without subscribing to gender ideology, get ready for a lot of insults, threats and general nastiness because you are a bigot.

      Reply
      1. SOQ

        I completely disagree- In my experience most transgender are normal everyday people who are trying to make the best of their lot- the same as the rest of us. They are not radicals and they are not ‘activists’- they just want to be treated with the same level of kindness and respect as everyone else.

        They are also becoming increasing disillusioned by what the general public know as the ‘Trans’ movement, which ironically has less and less transgender people in it with every year. Not one of them I have ever known gives a damn about stupid pronouns or breaking down gender ‘norms’- that is the queer politics crew.

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        1. Nigel

          Absolutely agree with your first paragraph.

          Think your second paragraph ignores just how prolonged and vicious the current assault on trans people and their rights has been, and how much worse it’s getting and how it’s a minority view empowered and amplified by money from fundamentalist US Christians and Russian oligarchs stoking extremism.

          Reply
          1. K. Cavan

            What exactly is this assault on Transgender rights, Nigel? What do you even mean by Transgender Rights? Where does this “extremism” stoked by these mysterious Russians & Americans manifest itself?
            You seem to believe you have the right to speak on behalf of Trans people. Do you actually believe that?
            Your comment is “extremist” & you’re cynically using Trans people as a political football.

        2. Estelle

          I’ve long suspected that this was the case. ‘Trans’ now covers such a huge range of people that it’s become silly and the word’s meaning is lost. An autogynephilic middle-aged men who start wearing their wives’ underwear have nothing in common with young girls who are terrified of what being a woman means in this porn-soaked world. Then there are the gender non-conforming people, who’ve always existed and thank goodness for them. Men should be able to wear what they like (within reason – fetish gear in the playground is inappropriate) and call themselves whatever they like and that should ge fine with everyone. In large parts of the world both men and women wear dresses, skirts and trousers. A man should be free to dress in a feminine way and wear a wig if he chooses. He’ll have to get over the fact that others will perceive this aesthetic in their own way and that how others perceive him is none of his business. He should not however, have to put up with a single second of abuse or discrimination because of his outward presentation.

          Problems arise when people start to demand control over the perceptions and beliefs of others and indeed, over material reality. If a man claims that he feels that he’s a woman, that’s okay but the rest of us know that he is not. He is a man. A man who claims to feel that he is a woman. Laws and rights should not be based upon the claimed feelings of a small group of people. Competing rights must be discussed. Most people who call themselves trans, I’m quite sure, do not want to bully and harass people. They do not want to force men into the private spaces of women and girls and they do not want to be pilloried for how they present themselves. They do not was want to intimidate women, steal their medals and injure them in their own sports. They do not want to sterilise children and leave them medicalised for their shortened sexless lives. And I know this to be true of most trans identified people because I know this of most people, full stop.

          Dysphoria is an awful thing. I’ve spoken with sufferers and read widely about it. It’s a crippling psychological and social problem. Dysphoria can be managed without recourse to mutilating surgeries and damaging drugs. But to significantly help dysphoric people, society needs to change. We are regressing in terms of acceptance of non-conformity rather than progressing. It is being suggested to young girls who don’t want to wear the stripper outfits that perhaps they’re actually boys. And gentle boys who don’t want to pump up their chests and develop a six pack and endlessly watch porn that demeans women are having it suggested to them that they are in the wrong body and that they are in fact girls.
          I know these young people. One young woman I know, a lesbian, was denounced and told she was a transphobe for the first time at the age of 17 when she said she would never be sexually attracted to a man who identified himself as a transwoman. She is a lesbian! She is exclusively attracted to people of her own sex, females, i.e. women. Back when I was 17, the equivalent thing was ‘She just needs a good seeing to’ by a man. And this would only be said by ignorant homophobes.
          I know a young gay man, now in his twenties, who was convinced in his early teens, through going to what is ostensibly an LGBT youth group, that because he was effeminate, he must be trans. He’s a man, a gay man and no one could have or should have suggested anything different.
          I know a young straight woman who was convinced by others when she was in her early teens that because she liked Doc boots and dressed in an alternative way, that she was trans.
          I know a young woman who says she is a man but who, months before she had her breasts removed, expressed serious doubts about ‘being trans’ at all bit also expressed her very real fears about what would happen to her if she said this because she was now trapped in this identity and had been set up, by adults, as somewhat of an ambassador for trans young people. She is clearly a young lesbian.

          This is regressive and damaging. It is also homophobic. Young people should be left to explore how they express themselves – the way they dress, the way they speak, their interests – without the burden of regressive sex stereotypes. They should be free to explore their burgeoning sexuality. Teenage years should be fun. Your only job as a teenager is to develop into an adult and have tje craic. They should not be constantly told that everyone outside of the state-mandated LGBT groups hates them. They should not be taught that everyone outside of these groups wants to hurt them and discriminate against them. And they certainly shouldn’t be taught to hide things from their parents. Adults telling or suggesting to kids and young people that they should keep secrets from their parents used to raise big red safeguarding flags. If it comes from this one group of believers in Gender Identity Theory though, it’s perfectly okay and no one should question it.

          I do not believe in Gender Identity Theory. But I respect anyone else’s right to believe in it. I am a secularist and a leftist (for whatever that’s worth since Identity Politics infected the left) so I do not want faith-based beliefs forced upon me or anyone else.

          Reply
          1. Sara

            Why is it that yoga teachers are always full of such ignorance and hate? You guys were massively over-represented in the anti-vaxx movement too.

          2. SOQ

            Sara- if you can’t have a grown up civil conversation then why bother commenting at all eh? Does such really bother you that much?

          3. Miriam Cotton

            That really could not be said better Estelle Birdy. The rage of the cultists towards those who refuse to ignore facts is typical cult behaviour – the taunting and silly name calling. The shunning. The supposedly withering sarcasm – cf the nonsense about essay marking above. The none too subtle ‘we know who you are and where we can get you’ threats. Ugly stuff. And those are the ‘adult’ members of the cult.

            The internet is saturated with sweet, self-absorbed, young teenagers ‘coming out’ as one thing, and then ‘coming out’ as some other thing – clearly confused and desperate for acceptance by doing and saying whatever will get them the attention and sense of belonging they crave. They wear these ‘identities’ like accessories. The conformity is striking – blue or purple hair de rigueur. Punky clothes, tattoos. It’s a uniform.

            Experimenting with self expression – exploding sexist norms would be a fine thing. But that is not what is happening. The religious indoctrination into the cult that’s going in schools and in every public body is horrifying. The predatory efforts to groom children into not trusting their parents, into to deceiving them is textbook cult recruitment strategy. The love bombing to seduce them in. Introducing them behind their parents backs to medications, breast binding and surgery as ‘health care’. What a devious inversion of the meaning of that term. It’s straightforward child abuse.

            And then casting them off with disgust when they say they’ve made a mistake and want to reverse course. Leaving them isolated and alone with permanent and often horrific damage to their bodies and psyches.

            And then there is the insistence on instantaneous ‘affirmation’ even for primary school children – despite knowing that those with genuine sex dysphoria are mostly gay or lesbian children coming to terms with their sexual orientation. This is mandatory conversion therapy by a homo, hetero and bi phobic cult – raging against the reality of biological sex because to acknowledge that fundamental material reality would be to shatter the delusion – or the sexual fetish as it is in many cases. That would bring the whole lie crashing down around them. So they now calmly dismiss the biologically sexed basis for LGBH orientations and insist that their delusions must be constructed in everyone else’s heads – or else. We must all be unquestioning GIT zealots instead. And for what? The only things being ‘affirmed’ by all of this are woefully regressive sex stereotypes. Children are being used and abused. Adults are being gaslit and bullied. At the end of it all, and no matter how hard they try to pretend to believe, everybody still knows exactly who and what a man and a woman are and that no amount of surgery, hormones or nail varnish will change that, ever.

          4. SOQ

            Personally, as a young gay man who went through a phase of gender confusion- hair, make up etc- it wouldn’t have taken much to convince me I was in the wrong body. I am glad such pressures did not exist in those days because as I grew, and learned, I became more comfortable in who and what I was.

            I am not saying that is the case for everyone but it is such a state of flux that anything is possible before the genetics settle down. I believe sexuality is nature not nurture btw.

            But as I have said before- in the main, the problem right now is not young boys but young girls because there is a huge transgender FTM spike, and so far nobody is coming up with any answers as to why.

          5. SOQ

            The New Homophobia- Ben Appel

            “But today I am equally fearful of the radical activists I once longed to emulate, activists who push a regressive, anti-liberal agenda that reifies gender stereotypes, downplays the seriousness of long-term medicalization and ultimately seeks to abolish my identity—for without biological sex, there is no homosexuality. ”

            “It’s time that LGBT rights organizations answer to the growing number of gays, lesbians and trans people sounding the alarm on the medicalization of homosexuality by radical queer activists”

            https://www.newsweek.com/new-homophobia-opinion-1698969

        3. K. Cavan

          Absolutely, SOQ. In my experience, Trans Activists can be among the most vicious & truly disturbed individuals you could wish not to encounter, while very often Trans people themselves are the polar opposite, private, apolitical, even rather conservative.
          Compared to me, anyway.

          Reply
  3. NobleLocks

    Hilarious and true. There is zero evidence of genduuurrr, it was something made up by a paedophile Doctor in the 1950’s and used to groom a family so he could sexually abuse and rape their twin boys. The reaction of it’s adherence to even discussing genduurrr ideology is explosive and mostly insane. Those who criticise must be destroyed. There is no forgiveness though, that’s what makes it worse than Catholicism (as if it were possible). They actively seek to separate children from parents and constantly try to get around parental control to teach children their insane lies (see any vid by libsofticktoc) Oh and let’s not forget the grooming of societies across the globe…

    And most of all, what makes it most like a religion is that in order for it’s adherents to climb to the top of the victimhood pyramid they believe that the best thing they can do for a child suffering from identity issues is to sterilize and castrate/full mastectomy them.

    Oh and they really don’t like being called Groomers… lol

    /sits back, waits for Nigel’s frothing at the gob denunciation… he doesn’t like blasphemy.

    Reply
    1. Nigel

      Yes how unreasonable to object to hateful smears like ‘groomers,’ though it’s becoming an unpleasantly common occurrence on Broadsheet.

      Reply
      1. NobleLocks

        The sexualization of a child against the wishes of the parents is Grooming. Pure and simple. If you don’t like it, time to reappraise things.

        People who receive the answer “OK Groomer” … to quote the Joker: “Get what they effin’ deserve”.

        Reply
        1. Nigel

          It’s not sexualisation. It’s nothing to do with sexualisation.

          The Joker is a psychopatic comic villain. People who use him as a moral compass are not healthy.

          Reply
          1. NobleLocks

            More character assassination? lol

            Oh and to answer your other comment. I never called you a groomer once. You would do well to read what is actually said Nige, I didn’t float down the Liffey yesterday lad.

      2. K. Cavan

        “Groomers”, Nigel, is reserved for fanatics, like yourself, who believe that the State should impose the tenets of gender ideology on young kids & who decry those who question this policy as bigots.

        Reply
      3. Clampers Outside

        You throw transphobe arou d like confetti, and you whinge about being called a ‘groomer’.

        Get over yourself.

        Reply
    2. jonjoker

      Nah, I don’t think you are right here. Years ago I remember reading about what were then called “ladyboys” in Thailand, an apparently socially acceptable thing which was then considered deviant in the West.
      I’m all in favour of people having various choices available in life, and being able to choose to be something other than the single male, or female, role model presented to them by our society, provided that is what they want. Not all men are or want to be macho he-men, not all women want to be “homemakers”. It’s good that society now has given its seal of approval to other options.
      But we also need to ensure that the new options do not relegate the previous “norm” to some sort of limbo or worse.

      Reply
      1. Clampers Outside

        +1

        Widen the definition of manhood to encapsulate the lipstick, wig and a dress trans individuals and let’s leave womanhood to women.

        Job done.

        Reply
        1. Clampers Outside

          ^”so called trans” that should’ve read.
          And I gave that description just to show what little a man need do with regard to using Self ID to claim to be a woman. Hell, there are plenty of examples of men who Self ID as women that don’t even do that much.

          Reply
  4. AC

    What percentage of the Irish public believe that their gender identity is primary over their biological sex? Would love if there was a proper unbiased poll done on this.

    Reply
        1. Barry the Hatchet

          I think it does if you read it, Cian. The majority of respondents favoured single-sex facilities and services – this clearly indicates that a majority of respondents do not believe that gender identity should have primacy over biological sex

          Reply
          1. Cian

            Just because the majority of respondents favoured single-sex facilities and services does not indicate that a majority of respondents do not believe that gender identity should have primacy over biological sex

            “there should be mixed public toilets” ≠ “gender identity should have primacy over biological sex”

  5. A

    Gender identity ideology is a woke cult. And it is a disaster for women’s rights. Men cannot become women. Humans cannot change sex.

    Reply
    1. Kdoc

      That’s very true. Sex is determined even before birth, gender, on the other hand, is entirely socially constructed. I have no issue with anyone choosing to claim to be what they want to be – whatever they feel like when they wake each morning. But they can’t change their biological make-up.

      Reply
      1. jonjoker

        Kdoc, they can’t change their genetics, but a large number (v. small percentage) of people have had sex-change operations, and believe they have changed their sex.

        However – and this to me is a large proviso – do others who meet them feel that they are now their ‘new’ sex?
        Say you are a woman and meet someone who is apparently a man and hit it off, go home with them, and then find they have had a sex-change operation. What is your reaction? Do you continue as planned, or do you leave feeling upset in some way?

        I wonder if there is any research done on this.

        Reply
  6. Nigel

    To frame something as religious is most definitely to make a value judgement about its truth. The fact that gender dysphoria is recognised as real and tangible and nothing to do with any religious conception of ‘soul’ undercuts the premise completely. The rest are social and cultural markers and phenomena, and many of them arose defensively after years of oppression, suppression and prejudice

    Reply
      1. Ian - oG

        Maybe he is creeped out by people so obsessed with them they see them absolutely everywhere?

        People like you. How often do you think about them and people’s genitals? 5 times an hour? 10? 20? Per minute?

        I’d say you need to speak to a professional urgently.

        LOL…..

        Reply
        1. NobleLocks

          Ahh the calling cards of Toxic trans rights: Malicious gossip and Character assassination. Another one that’s going to have to do Soooo much better than that.

          Reply
          1. K. Cavan

            It seems to me, Noble, that you’ve transgressed the rules of some religious belief system & are being denounced for daring to do so.
            QED

        1. NobleLocks

          LOOOOOOOLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!

          Ahh good man Nigel. You did what your religion told you to do an ignored it! Swept it under the carpet and denied it’s existence!

          You should be a priest, in your galactic hypocrisy you’d be perfect for the role.

          Reply
          1. Nigel

            I deny its existence the same way I deny the existence of the lurgi – because it doesn’t exist.

        2. Clampers Outside

          WPATH would disagree with you saying that AGP is something made up Nigel.
          Hell Even Wikipedia goes to town on the theory, but it doesn’t say that it doesn’t exist at all, but that the person who developed the typology of it, got it wrong.
          The arguments against autogynephilua are not that it doesn’t exist but that more study needs to be do e

          See ‘Blanchards Transsexualism Typology’ for more on that on the ol’ wiki.
          And no, you cannot claim the piece is anti-trans. The piece is well referenced and is certainly leaning to a pro-trans and WPATH slant.

          Reply
          1. Nigel

            So as a concept it’s undefined, unstudied, misapplied and not very well understood, and on wikipedia. Rock solid stuff.

          2. Clampers Outside

            Wiki is in there for a quick reference for you, and as I said, you can check the references used.

            Discuss with honesty and respond so, or don’t, that’s up to u.

          3. NobleLocks

            “So as a concept it’s undefined, unstudied, misapplied and not very well understood, and on wikipedia. Rock solid stuff.”

            Poor Nige, your sunk cause just keeps undermining everything you have said and everything you believe with the transsexuals. If your ideas weren’t so contemptable and your justifications weren’t so vacuous I’d almost feel sorry for you.

    1. Miriam Cotton

      Sex Dysphoria is a real condition. Nobody denies that. With every other kind of dysphoria we do not invert the world in order to accommodate it but that is exactly what this new religion demands we should do. There is nothing incompatible with maintaining material reality AND treating dysphoric people well. The strength of a delusion doesn’t make it not be a delusion, that’s not the measure. Schizophrenic people are absolutely convinced of their visual and auditory delusions and halucinations. The rest of us are under no obligation to accept them because it would be madness to do so. What this new religion demands is that we affirm the delusion absolutely and without question. It also demands that chancers and perverts who could take advantage of this affirmation-without-question must also be accepted as sex dysphoric – even to the point of allowing child rapists access to safe spaces. Already happening! This is religious zealotry gone mad.

      Reply
      1. Nigel

        Nothing is being inverted. Nothing. Not the world, not anything. There is a small minority of women who happened to have transitioned after being born male, and small minority of men who transitioned after being born female. That’s it. Nothing is inverted, it’s just a fact of life, it’s been going on for a long time. It’s not a menatl disorder or a delusion, it’s a recognised medical condition, nor should they be held responsible for the actions of real or imagined sexual predators who are not trans but who somehow get conflated with them, they have always been more likely to be targets of violence than the perpetrators.

        Reply
          1. Nigel

            According to you lot they’re serial kilelrs, rapists, pedophiles, cultists, groomers, homophobes, fascists and misogynists. I expect they’ll be transphoobes next, to round it out.

          2. Clampers Outside

            According to you, and trans lobby groups, the “non-binary” individuals are trans. But seeing as no one individual is 100% either / or – because biology doesn’t work like that – then every human on the planet is non-binary. It’s one of the dumbest categories of trans. Laughable stuff.

        1. NobleLocks

          Nahh man, you said it. There are so called Trans people who aren’t real trans people. Finally and I mean FINALLY you are getting somewhere, despite all of your childish kicking and screaming against reality.

          Reply
          1. Clampers Outside

            Yes, Nigel you did.

            You have abused all commenter who have opposed Self ID. You have said that no one can deny someone’s self identification.
            Yet above you are saying some trans are not really trans, so you are now contradicting your stance on Self ID.

            This was inevitable with you. Just surprised I haven’t seen it sooner.

          2. Nigel

            I haven;t abused anyone (been called a grromer four times now today, though!.)

            I did not say some trans people are not really trans. My words are right there for all to read, that is not what they say, not without a heavy dose of lying about it.

          3. Clampers Outside

            Maybe not in this thread, today, which is a good day for you.
            But your history of… That’s another story.

          4. Nigel

            Your conception of ‘my history’ and my actual history have often been discovered to be at odds.

        2. Clampers Outside

          Nigel, just because the WHO removed the mental ‘disorder’ category from gender dysphoria, that doesn’t just make it a run of the mill medical condition the way you say. It is still and always will be a mental health condition, even if it is not considered a ‘disorder’.
          Remember to the reasons that trans lobbies wanted that change was to remove stigma. That’s it. It wasn’t because actual medical practitioners all of a sudden saw the mental health condition differently. You far too often rely on that reclassification to make I correct statements about ge drrdysphoria not being a mental health condition. Please do stop, and read up on the changes and why they came about and what the current categorisation actually means, good lad.

          Reply
          1. Nigel

            Whether or not it’s a run of the mill medical condition, whether there is a mental heath aspect to the condition, are irrelvant, because other people’s medical conditions and treatments are none of your business.

    2. Clampers Outside

      What is being done is viewing the theory of gender identity – and as you say, making a “value judgement” – in a religious framing. If you realised that the author does hold a positive value for religion, and so, is not making a negative value judgement of the theory, then you would realise your suggestion that the “value judgement” is negative is wholly yours, not the authors.

      Nowhere does the author say that gender dysphoria is not real. You say that, not the author. To suggest so is clearly a dishonest reading of the piece.

      You say that gender dysphoria has nothing to do with “any religious conception of ‘soul'”, but that is not what many trans individuals say themselves – are you being transphobic here Nigel?
      Do you ever listen to the descriptions of gender dysphoria by those who suffer from it?
      Or from those treating the condition?
      Or from the world authority on transgenderism – WPATH?

      Here’s a few examples of references to ‘soul’ from those whom you are saying soul has nothing to do with… which, I say again, seems rather transphobic of you to make such claims that are counter to those who are trans and those who the apparent authority on such matters.

      Here you go…

      A quick look at the big wigs in transgenderism, the WPATH / World Professional Association for Transgender Health, website which has a number of references to soul…

      Here are just a few….

      Christy Plaice, a WPATH recognised counsellor / Psychotherapist who runs the ‘Door of The Soul’ counselling business for gender dysphoic individuals

      See also other counselling practices including BODY MIND SOUL STUDIOS LLC

      See also the book by Costa, L. M., & Matzner, A. (2007) titled “ Male bodies, women’s souls: Personal narratives of Thailand’s transgendered youth “- Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.
      This is referenced in the 7th and latest edition of the WPATH  ‘Standards of Care’ book for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming People

      As far back as 2014, the WPATh symposium of that year had speakers mention the’ soul ‘ – https://www.wpath.org/media/cms/Documents/History/Symposium/2014/2014%20Book%20of%20Abstracts%20Bangkok.pdf
      Here is a full quote “Transition begins as a creative act of imagination and becomes a dynamic process of self­actualization, a generative act that melds science, poetry and nature, and ends in the literal embodiment of a vision. Remaking oneself, rather than a clinical process of “treating a gender condition” is a synergistic, holistic transformation of the mind, body and spirit,“a process of soul retrieval . . . a shamanic voyage” (R. Ettner, First Event keynote, 1998, Boston). Transition is an organizing act that clears the clutter, the dissonance and dissociation, and lets the authentic Self be seen.”

       
      Also, for the crack, here’s some more soul references with regard to transgender… this one is from Harvard – https://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2016/gender-lines-science-transgender-identity/ – see particularly the comments from actual transgender persons regarding the soul, body and their relationship with gender.

       
      You should also note, that in reference to soul and gender, there is very much a lot of the above in common with the many Christian groups and Christian theological writings on gender and the soul. Google will throw up a few for you should you care to actually read before commenting as you have done here.

      To sum up…. if anyone or anything is being “undercut”, it’s your ill informed comments.

      Reply
      1. Nigel

        ‘not making a negative value judgement of the theory,’

        She’s making a value judgement about its truth.

        Since gender dysphoria is ‘true’ that removes any foundational semblance of a religion from the entire construct. She says ‘A belief in gender identity involves a level of faith as there is nothing tangible to prove its existence which, as something divorced from the physical body, is similar to the idea of a soul.’ But that applies to cis as well as trans people, and it applies to all thought and mental activity and mental illness, since those things are just as intangible as one’s inner sense of gender. It might be a handy metaphor, but it’s not much use in terms of diagnosis, treatment and therapy. Plus I think all those things are perfectly tangible, anyway, so it’s a bit of a red herring to my mind.

        As for the rest of your comment, the use of ‘soul’ in language around transgenderism may be indicative of individual spritualism, or it may simply be a metaphorical way of speaking about feelings and sensations than can be difficult to articulate outside of cold medical language. I would also suggest that between religious and medical prejudice a lot of trans people have probably resorted to alternative forms of medicine and therapy to understand and explore their condition, leading to the adoption of conceptual frameworks such as shamanism.

        Use of words like ‘soul and ‘spirit’ is common across culture and society and can similarly indicate actual spiritualism, or is simply the usie language created by religions that were once dominant to express profound feelings and sensations that seem to transcend materialism but which need not be associated with anything religious.

        Reply
        1. Clampers Outside

          Eh… sorry Ted, but your explanation doesn’t hold water.

          There is nothing to prove its existence as divorced from the physical body.
          There is nothing wrong with that statement. This is very much part of the gender debate with academia which is far from settled.

          “That applies to cis as well as trans people”… Sorry Nigel, what applies to these people? What are u on about here?

          Your comparisons to “all thought and mental activity and mental illness” as being just as intangible as gender is a broad brush. You may as well have just said we can see male gender and female gender. But these are the parts of gender that are not divorced from the body.
          What parts of gender, that are divorced from the body, are tangible?
          These are “perfectly tangible” things to you, so you should have no issue explaining them as such.
          Or, is it simply your ‘belief’ in these things that are divorced from the body? Sounds quite soul like, or spiritual, to me if it is.

          Which brings me to your the second part of your reply, from spiritualism to shamanism and the use of words like soul or spirit.
          Basically, you miss the point the author is making.
          Just because you reference spiritualism of the indiviual doesn’t take away from the authors own references to the theory and it’s adherents being very much like a religion.

          The spiritualism you refer to is being encoded in the gender identity theory, and it is the theory and the dictats of that, that is which can be viewed as the religion – regardless of the individuals own spirituality.
          This is because it is the theory that is informing the practices of ‘gender identity’ as it dictates to institutions how it should be practiced.

          Come on man, don’t ignore the elephant in the room like that.

          Reply
          1. Nigel

            ‘There is nothing to prove its existence as divorced from the physical body.’

            Except the testimony of the people experiencing it, in their bodies.

            ‘These are “perfectly tangible” things to you, so you should have no issue explaining them as such.’

            Thoughts and feelings are all tangible, since the person feeling them, feels them.

            You keep talikng about things and how they’re divorced from the body and I have no idea what you think you’re getting at, sorry.

            You can impose the framework of a religion on just about anything that isn’t a religion, which makes it essentially meaningless. The only reason to do it is to delegitemise whatever is is you’re imposing it on, which is a pretty dangerous thing to do to something that requires medical treatment and an unpleasant thing to do to something which has itself ahs been persecuted and stigmatised by established religions.

          2. Clampers Outside

            Testimony is an opinion, one based on a feeling.
            One cannot seriously take that as ‘perfectly tangible’ which is what you said.
            Please do give tangible examples, thanks

          3. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            souls may or may not exist (probably not), completely unprovable no matter what you ” feel “

          4. Clampers Outside

            But feels are tangible and if a person feels they have one, then it exists.
            According to Nigel.
            This is exactly what the author was on about with regard to the believers of particular faiths, yet this seems to whooooooosh over Nigel head.

          5. Clampers Outside

            You have no idea what I’m getting at with regard to gender being “divorced from the body” when you quoted this and then commented on that same quote above. You even made applications of it when you said what it applies to.

            Seriously, stop talking nonsense and pretending to not have said what you said…. Its right there in your prior comment, Jaysus Nigel.
            I think you spout so much nonsense you don’t even believe half what you say and that is why you don’t know what you yourself has commented on…. Laughable…. that you lecture others on comprehension. *sigh*

          6. Nigel

            I found your second set of usages impenetrable.

            Testimony is evidence. How else are you going to find out how a person thinks and feels? Are thoughts and feelings not real?

          7. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            nope they are not, they are just chemical reactions in your reality

          8. Nigel

            So if I exprssed my thoughts and feelings to you would you dismiss them as mere chemical reactions in my reality? Bearing in mind that the very stuff of life, the very building blocks of reality, are chemical reactions.

          9. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            I wouldn’t dismiss them well maybe not to your face ;)
            Joking aside thoughts and feelings are ephemeral and subject to change and only really true to you and your perceptions of your environment at any given time, the key word there is perception. Just look at the feeling of love, tenuous at best for many and often transformed to it’s opposite. It’s very dangerous to rely to much on feelings alone.

          10. Nigel

            Many ‘tangible’ things are ephemeral, that doesn’t make them less real. The wind is invisible but it can still flatten a forest.

          11. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            hmmm good effort at analogy but you can measure wind and give it a physical representation quite easily with a wind sock, also it’s either there or it’s not,
            I’m not saying feelings don’t end up with physical manifestation, that’s what humans do with them, it doesn’t make the feeling any more ” real ” as the manifestation is a choice

        2. jonjoker

          It’s a US ideology, Niggle.
          They are big into religion over there, so their discourse is full of religious terminology, like Ireland and indeed much of Europe used to. Of course many of them believe their religion fervently still.

          This gender identity is today viewed as ‘progressive’ – but in the past that word used to be linked with left-wing ideology. Today people like Leo Varadkar use the word without a blink of an eyelid or a stutter in their speech in relation to his own ideology – and it means something completely different.
          It is today clearly linked with a strong rightwing ideology which includes using various types of smoke and mirrors to distract people from increasing financial and economic difficulties in society and the growing fascism which has been taking over our society for quite some time now, and has been clearly in the ascendency since the crash in 2007/08.

          And Colette Colfer has clearly identified the religious aspect of gender politics, which is essentially using sleight of hand to distract us from far bigger problems in our society.

          Reply
    3. Jan Rivers

      Gender Dysphoria or discomfort with the sexed body . Many forms.. Many ways in. Many ways out. Transition is but one route. So you are right it is not Invested in souls. Gender identiny ideology is though. It is a quasi religious explanation of ‘gender identity’ which it is the catchall explanation.

      Reply
    4. K. Cavan

      It’s called Body Dysphoria, Nigel, the Gender tag has been attached for political reasons. It is related to conditions like Anorexia, where someone sees themselves as obese, even though they are not.
      As little as a decade ago, it was so rare that a specialist psychologist flew over from France, weekly, to deal with the handful of patients in Ireland, as we had nobody competent in the field, resident here. In the meantime, society has not become more insistent on rigid gender stereotypes, quite the opposite. I have known camp straight men, macho gay men, butch & feminine straight women & lesbians, none of these factors played any part in how I treated these people, their sexuality or personality type was just part of who they are & I certainly found a similar attitude prevalent & growing in society.
      Then Trans became a Political Issue, rather than an issue of mental health, which is what drove the attempts to inculcate children, despite the fact that no child can suffer from Body Dysphoria, being entirely ignorant about the reality of being an adult of either sex.
      It’s obvious to me that your concern for “Trans Rights” is Political, I believe you are cynically defending the exploitation of children because of your political views, I believe you are a groomer & I despise you for it, it’s inexcusable.

      Reply
    1. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

      raised as (like the majority on this island), I won’t presume to know current status, however I’d assume someone who studies religion and actively takes part in other religions bits and bobs even in an observatory manner has probably some kind of belief ?

      Reply
      1. Ian - oG

        I was curious because prior and subsequent to this I have noted a lot of people trying to equate trans gender rights activism with Catholic church teaching and social control and wondered, if Collette is a Catholic how she can square that circle between her faith and it being used as a pejorative towards trans gender people and activists?

        If she is a Catholic then she doesn’t appear to pushed that Catholicism is held up as a benchmark of regression and bigotry? If not, moo* point.

        *Cows opinion so of no value.

        Reply
        1. K. Cavan

          You’re scraping the bottom of the barrel there, Ian. An Ad Hominem attack merely serves to highlight the weakness of your position & your paucity of argument.

          Reply
  7. Miriam Cotton

    A terrific article. Cuts to the heart of what the No Debate gender cultists don’t want anyone to think about – that this stuff is all in their own minds. Everyone is happy for them to believe whatever they like – to dress and present as they like. We WILL believe in the sacrament of transition – it is blasphemy and sacrilege to question it and we must all be denounced from the pulpits – in this case the social media accounts and opinion columns of evangelical converts. Transwomen ARE women!!! No debate!!! When it comes to indoctrinating children in schools, denying biology and fact, shoving women out of their hard won spaces and demanding that their mystic beliefs be enforced by law then we are going backwards.to the days of McQuaid. It seems clear that some Irish people have had difficulty adjusting to not having an authoritarian, dogmatic, theistic presence in their lives. Time for the rest of us to tell them to get the hell out of everyone else’s face and put them right back in their box.

    Reply
    1. NobleLocks

      It’s really weird too how close the sacrament of transubstantiation is to the sacrament of transition. And the flesh became bloody = and the man became woman. It’s the same thing!

      Yet they still think they are progressive and that they don’t need religion or any of that nonsense…. lol The absolute hypocrisy is staggering.

      Reply
      1. Hugh Weldon

        There is no church sacrament that an individual imposes on him or herself, all is done in public, in a community, apart from confession, which nobody bothers with these days. It is a rather stretched comparison imho, transubstantiation is done by the priest, not the communicant.

        Reply
        1. K. Cavan

          The parallels are glaringly obvious, Hugh. The fact that Noble can describe it in a succint five lines is proof of that.

          Reply
        2. Steph Pinker

          Hugh Weldon: you just posted one of the most bizarre, ignorant, dogmatic comments on this thread;
          ‘There is no church sacrament that an individual imposes on him or herself, all is done in public, in a community, apart from confession, which nobody bothers with these days. It is a rather stretched comparison imho, transubstantiation is done by the priest, not the communicant’

          … is there any space at all for an exorcist?

          ………………………. asking for a demonic friend………….

          Reply
  8. SOQ

    A very important point to make on this subject is that just like gay people, not all Trans hold the same opinions. In fact the term ‘Trans’ incorporates a lot more than transgender. IMO some of it is just batpoo crazy and does absolutely nothing to advance Trans rights.

    The two people I follow on this subject are Rose of Dawn https://twitter.com/Rose_Of_Dawn and Blaire White https://twitter.com/MsBlaireWhite, both transgender themselves and both voices of sanity.

    Both, also ‘far right’ apparently, but sure isn’t everyone who dares to hold a personal opinion these days?

    Blaire White recently appeared on the Joe Rogan show btw, which is proof that not all Trans politics is confrontational, and that the wider public can be very receptive if it is framed in a moderate way- and not brainwashed into children.

    Reply
    1. Nigel

      Hey, I’ve been called a groomer three times today for having an opinion on trans people others disagreee with. Is that confrontational? Is associating anything LGTBQ with grooming and pedophilia far right, or is it getting more and more mainstream? Should people be more receptive to that idea in order to advance trans rights?

      Reply
        1. Nigel

          No, they wouldn’t, because they’d just make up more lies and smears about them. For example, trans kids do not get sterilised or have body parts removed, not in any jurisdiction, but now in Missouri, they’re banning transition until age 25, just to be sure. Trans acceptance just isn’t in the cards for these people.

          Reply
          1. Ty

            > For example, trans kids do not get sterilised or have body parts removed, not in any jurisdiction,

            That’s not true. Why do you believe that? You can search “teen trans mastectomy” and see cases upon cases that show that you are wrong. Why make a disproven empirical claim?

            If you are arguing in good faith, please ask how you have got to the point where you have such certainty in things which are untrue.

          2. Barry the Hatchet

            Nigel, if you genuinely believe that under 18s are not being sterilised or having body parts removed, I would really encourage you to do a bit more reading about this subject. You might perhaps start with this peer reviewed article which talks about girls as young as 13 receiving double mastectomies (and which supports that): https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapediatrics/article-abstract/2674039. You can agree or disagree with the necessity or appropriateness of the surgery, but it’s either ignorant or disingenuous to pretend it isn’t happening.

          3. Nigel

            In the UK, nobody can start hormone treatment until they’re sixteen, and that takes a year or two before any surgery can be performed. You can quibble about whetther teens are children, I suppose, but nobody uinder sixteen gets surgiacaly transitoned, and they’re closer to eighteen, which is generally regarded as their majority.

            As for the masectomies – ‘All postsurgical participants (68 of 68; 100%) affirmed the statement, “It was a good decision to undergo chest reconstruction.”’ Honestly it seems like getting outraged about this is like getting outraged about appendix removal or other corrective surgeries in young people: you’re just inserting yourself into other people’s personal medical problems and decisions based on your own prejudices and hangups.

          4. Clampers Outside

            You an “quibble about whether teens are children” Nigel.

            I’ll tell you what I know.

            They are children.

            That’s a Jaysus slippery road Nigel… Christ I can’t believe you said that. Then again, you are so consumed with dogma and ideology I’m not surprised.

          5. GiggidyGoo

            ‘You’re just inserting yourself into other people’s personal medical problems and decisions based on your own prejudices and hangups.’

            So, they’re ‘medical problems’ then?

          6. Barry the Hatchet

            Nigel, you said “trans kids do not get sterilised or have body parts removed, not in any jurisdiction”. I have demonstrated to you that this is incorrect, so now you’ve resorted to calling me prejudiced. It’s not a great look for you.

          7. Nigel

            ‘That’s a Jaysus slippery road Nigel’

            Well, yes, you’re very fond of the slippery slope fallacy. But when you say children, people will think you mean under-12s, which is why you deliberately say ‘children’ not ‘teenagers,’ because the other slope goes up, towards adulthood and majority.

          8. Nigel

            Barry – it’s true, I was not aware of masectomies being performed on teenagers so young, fair cop,

            BUT

            They’re rare
            They have 100% positive outcomes
            The study you link to calls for clearer guidleines, which nobody can object to

            SO

            The only reason for reacting with horror to surgeries in young people that have positive outcomes is, frankly, prejudice. Or personal squeamishness, to be fair. It seems fair to assume that everybody involved takes them incredibly seriously and only takes such a course of action to relieve serious distress.

          9. Clampers Outside

            The study is conducted by a gender clinic under the eye of WPATH.
            It’s certainly not independent.
            The sample is small, as per the studies own reckoning.
            The most glaring problem is that the post surgical groups mean age was 19…. at the time of the survey! Did they interview the the day after, a week, a month, a year after? There’s no long term effects measured in this study.
            The euphoria of post surgery is not even touched on.
            Detransitioning, those with serious regret, from what little data is out there on that, happens a few years after surgery. Where is this much called for data on the later follow ups? Oh wait, wasn’t it reported that follow ups just aren’t done, oh yeah… Of course.
            Even I can see more holes than a Swiss cheese in that study.

            100%… Sure. Of course a gender clinic is going to say such. Isn’t that one of the reasons GIDS in the UK is under investigation – lack of follow up and fudging data.
            Pointless study.

        2. Barry the Hatchet

          Just to be clear Nigel, this is something you weren’t aware of until approximately 4pm today, but now you’re so expert you can talk to me with absolute certainty about frequency and outcomes? You’re embarrassing yourself.

          Reply
          1. Clampers Outside

            And you jumped on it to make your point, swallowing it hook line and sinker… *sigh*

          2. Nigel

            Well of course you don’t accept it, it shows young trans people happy with their treatment, that’s anathema to you.

          3. Clampers Outside

            Bad research is just that, bad research. And useless.

            Why would I accept something as good research that is clearly not fit for purpose.

            But you are willing to accept it.
            No surprise there.
            You often argue for standards in X, Y or Z discussions but when it suits you, you drop all standards.

            The cognitive dissonance is strong in this one.

      1. K. Cavan

        Having been called a groomer a Biblical three times, Nigel, because you support the teaching of Gender Ideology as fact to kindergarten children, you can assume victim status. Stunning & Brave, Nigel.

        Reply
    2. Fluffybiscuits

      @SDQ you sold your soul a long time ago and betrayed the community you claimed to be a part in. A Conservative gay man…

      Reply
      1. NobleLocks

        Interesting language

        Tell me, when the former gay charity Stonewall got the BBC to change it’s definition of Gay from “Same sex attracted” to “Same gender attracted” do you think they were protecting gay men or making gay men bigots if they refused to have sex with trans identified women?

        TRA’s are after the gays too… Something nigel has point blank refused to see but trans ideology is very much the new homophobia. Try reading anything by that disgusting freak “Grace” Lavery… you’d want to be an idiot not to see his hatred for gays.

        Reply
        1. Nigel

          Trans people are groomers, pedophiles, serial killers, rapists, misogynists, homophobes, cultists and fascists – all because they just want to go to the loo in peace.

          Reply
          1. NobleLocks

            I wish you’d stop being so disingenuous… It would be nice to speak with someone who wasn’t a 100% bad faith responder.

            Why can’t you be nice Nigel?

          2. Nigel

            I’m just repeating the words of people commenting on the trans issue on this website, yesterday and today. Is it bad faith to use their words when describing their attitudes?

          3. Clampers Outside

            The issue is that no one can define “trans” because it is an umbrella term for anyone from persons who Self ID as another sex to those who go for surgery. And in using an umbrella term that also captures all the fetishists and AGP individuals. The trans lobby, as I said before, needs to drop that approach to avoid such concerns, of for example, men who self ID to gain access to women’s spaces, like in the Wi Spa incident. Which is a real example, and not fake as you have claimed.

          4. Nigel

            No, I think accepting definitions and criteria as to who is and isn’t trans from peple who hate and despise and demmonise trans people would be a terrible idea. You’ve made up an entire sexual deviamcy to smear them with, like brimstone preachers of old denouncing perverts from the pulpit. Now there’s a more apposite religious connection than vague rhetorical superficial paralells that could be applied to almost anything.

        2. Miriam Cotton

          Ah yes, Willy Lavery as he ought to be known imo. Brendan O’Neill has a superb, excoriating review of Lavatory’s book (“Please Miss: A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Penis”) on Spiked. Am I allowed to put links in here? Probably not. Google it – you won’t be disappointed.

          Reply
          1. Clampers Outside

            Nigel needs to read this, but he won’t, because he would have to acknowledge he advocates for persons like this to get access to women’s spaces.

          2. Nigel

            I need to read Spiked and Brendan O’Neill on trans issues and accept it as factually correct and accurate? You is having the larf.

          3. Clampers Outside

            It’s a book review, with quotes, plenty of them.
            A book written by a high-profile TRA who is also a Prof at Berkeley. Just the kind of person whom you support.

            The Prof also thinks, since “transition” , it’s sexy now when they go to the loo. The Prof says so in their memoir.
            And you want them to share a loo and changing rooms with women and all women’s sex segregated spaces. Go You Nigel!

      2. SOQ

        A conservative gay man like Douglas Murray or Andrew Moore you mean? Who are you to decide what the ‘community’ is or is not?

        I no more dress a certain way nor act a certain way nor think a certain way than most srt8 people do, because- that is the very definition of homophobia.

        I have cited the trans activists I follow above- they too make their own minds up- which is are invited onto shows that wouldn’t touch the others with a barge pole. So who is really doing the most for the Trans cause?

        Reply
  9. Junkface

    I always said it was a religious/cult situation with the woke ideologies, they believe in so much nonsense without any real proof, so they operate on faith, just like in religion. It seems some writers and thinkers are finally feeling able to stand up to it, even though many people still lose jobs over this stance.

    I think she’s right in her article. This all coincides with falling Catholicism numbers and Christianity generally in the western world. It seems humanity is genetically programmed for religion. It takes a lot of thought and work to shake it off, if you are that way inclined of course.

    Reply
    1. Nigel

      You always say it because it’s the easiest, laziest, thought-ending trope to impose on something you don’t like. Imagine not getting why the falling numbers of religions traditionally hostile to trans people might lead to more people being openly trans.

      Reply
      1. Junkface

        Wow! That is some mental gymnastics you did there. Total nonsense! That makes zero logical sense.
        Declaring yourself as trans is en vogue since 2015. Especially with teenage girls (USA, UK) who are lesbian, or just coming out.
        Trans activist teachers in schools are encouraging them to become transmen instead of just gay young women, advising them to take puberty blockers, sometimes leading to irreversible mastectomies. So these poor young women are left with broken bodies, no sex drive, and no one who wants to have sex with them. Its truly shocking and tragic, and if you really would like to be considered humane in your thinking, then you would read one of many books about this topic. One is called “Irreversible damage”.

        Reply
        1. Nigel

          Declaring yourself trans has never been ‘en vogue.’ It became less scary to do it for a while. I suspect that while is ending as hostility towards the trans community mounts at an appalling rate.

          Reply
          1. Junkface

            From that book : “There has been a 900% increase in teenage girls declaring themselves trans since 2013”.
            It has come to the point that 30% of Gen Z people now identify as trans or non binary in the USA. By now you must know that the approx. percentage of people who suffer from body dysmorphoria is about 0.01% . So how come all of these Gen Z-ers are declaring themselves trans? An extra 29.9% than all previous generations!

            Because this is what teens and young people have always done, follow trends to fit in with their peers. It is en vogue since 2015.

          2. Nigel

            Or it’s was just safer to come out as trans, and there were better supports and access to care for those who did than previously.

          3. K. Cavan

            It’s not just access to care, Nigel. A generalised “Trans” ideology has been massively promoted by the most powerful people in our society, those who literally control this world, for their own reasons to do with dividing & conquering those who might question their divine right to most of the planet’s resources & wealth.
            It doesn’t even distinguish between Transgender/Transvestite & Transexual, pushing children who want to experiment with their gender, which is how they present, into irreversible surgical & chemical interventions, which have a dreadful track record in terms of both physical & mental health.

          4. Nigel

            ‘ A generalised “Trans” ideology has been massively promoted by the most powerful people in our society, those who literally control this world’

            You’re a fantasist.

      2. Clampers Outside

        Nigel is now saying that the 4000%* increase, in the UK, in teenage girls with gender dysphoria is because of the decline in religious oppression of those persons being themselves?
        Really?
        So where is the increase in numbers of women who are over 20? Are they some how unaffected by this reduction in oppression? Such nonsense Nigel, pure unadulterated nonsense.

        * Source: https://committees.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/7947/pdf/

        Reply
        1. Nigel

          Seems to me less religiious opression and social prejudice and greater acceptance and access to treatment and support would play a role, why is that so outlandish?

          Maybe women over twenty sensed that any period of acceptance would be short-lived. As it is proving to be.

          Reply
          1. Clampers Outside

            4000% outlandish, and only seen in in the impressionable age group of teens, not older women.

            Yes, it is completely outlandish to out it down to that.
            You are bananas if you are rationalising that, completely bonkers.

          2. Clampers Outside

            “the ‘if’ is a typo. You clearly are making an argument for that as a rationale explanation.

            You are bonkers.

  10. Chris

    It’s quite a sick cult. Many serial killers were dressed as girls by their mothers. Identity is a fragile thing with children, the phenomenon of ‘splitting’ can do irreparable damage to a person’s schema.

    There will be a serious societal blowback in years to come. Keeping groomers away from children is a serious task when it is state sanctioned, but it is a must.

    Reply
  11. Rob_G

    I’m not sure I get it; I am sure that there are loads (perhaps a slim majority?) of people who don’t believe a person can change their gender, or that only post-op counts as having changed gender, etc etc.

    But they don’t go around getting involved in internet arguments with people who have strong opinions on this issue, and go on living their lives facing any chastisement or repercussions whatsoever.

    Reply
  12. The Millie Obnoxious™

    Well, this has been fairly unpalatable reading.

    I’m off to get a 99 to cheer myself up.

    Reply
      1. NobleLocks

        If Quillette is the home of phrenology then trans ideology is the home of people who rotate the square block in Tetris.

        Reply
      2. NobleLocks

        Here’s a quote for you Nige… remind you of anyone? :)

        There’s a critical difference between autogynephilia and most other sexual orientations: Most other orientations aren’t erotically disrupted simply by being labeled. When you call a typical gay man homosexual, you’re not disturbing his sexual hopes and desires. By contrast, autogynephilia is perhaps best understood as a love that would really rather we didn’t speak its name. The ultimate eroticism of autogynephilia lies in the idea of really becoming or being a woman, not in being a natal male who desires to be a woman.

        Reply
          1. NobleLocks

            Really? You’re just going to sit there like a sulking child denying the existence of something you don’t like…

            Jesh the way you are going on you’d swear it was personal. ;)

  13. NobleLocks

    And for anyone who doesn’t think this ideology is after your children. Here’s a video produced by the INTO that not only is directed at primary school kids into believing that such a thing as “transition” exists, it lies to the potential dysphorian child by leaving out all the medical horror they will face for the rest of their lives if they insist on following this disastrous path.

    https://vimeo.com/433526547 – This video is an example of societal grooming and the INTO would do well to take it down immediately.

    As a friend of mine said the other day: FFS my 4 year old identifies as a Dinosaur but I’m not mental enough to start calling him Rex and chopping off his body parts to match.

    Reply
    1. Irish Woman

      Spot on, In Ireland we are always way behind in waking up, was the same with mother and baby homes, priests told the community the women were bad and everyone went along with it. trans pushers are the new priests, the government here have adopted the ideology in place of the CC and are forcing it on us all, they even changed the law to allow men into womens spaces and sports etc in 2015 without anybody voting on it. Its a sexist ideology that encourages kids to self harm, its about time politicians woke up.

      Reply
      1. NobleLocks

        Careful now, when I told Nigel that the Trans bull was piggybacked onto the gay marriage referendum two weeks before the vote on the advice of the legal firm Dentons who said that in order to get through such deeply unpopular legislation like that, they’d need to cloak it in the good that the Marriage referendum brought.

        The last time I told Nigel that he basically called me a liar. Of course, what you’ve said here and I said a while ago is all true… The Irish people were deceived and lied to by these barstewards and, unfortunately for the innocent amongst them… they will all reap what they sowed.

        Reply
      1. The Millie Obnoxious™

        More often when I open broadsheet and see stuff like this, it’s an excuse to close it again.

        This thread has made for particularly ugly reading.

        Reply
  14. Fluffybiscuits

    There is one fatalistic difference that is not mentioned in this however – the religious ideals we have are underpinned by a belief system that has developed culturally, its basically theory. Gender identity is proven by science and does not suffer from being an ideaology that came into existence to bring meaning to our lives. Twins in a study were shown to have a gender affinity with that of their genetics. That is a concept that is rooted in science – there is a literature review that looks at it and while the population is small enough (indeed identital twins and some who are further trans) , there is enough of a burden of proof to show that this is the case . – https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1743609515339060?via%3Dihub . There is also little evidence borne out that people born in the identity opposite to what they wish to be are prone to increasingly commit acts of s**ual violence. I cannot for the life of me understand why a concept that is now in modern culture was accepted all over the world previously (Dilats in India, Polynesia). Nothing is taken away from us men or women.

    Reply
    1. Mark Blagrove

      That is not a study on gender identity, it’s a study on gender identity disorder. That disorder may well have brain and biological and genetic links, that doesn’t show that gender identity, or the gender soul, has any reality except in the mind and imagination and upbringing of the individual.

      Reply
  15. NobleLocks

    Someone was asking for a poll of what the Irish people really thought of this deceptive ideology whipped by purity spirals and covetous envy,

    https://thecountess.ie/first-irish-public-poll-on-gender-debate/

    Fewer than one in five (17%) respondents agreed with the law as it currently stands that a person should be allowed to change their birth certificate as soon as they self-identify as the opposite sex.
    34% thought it should be permitted once a person has partially or fully transitioned through hormone treatment and/or genital surgery.
    28% of people said individuals should not be allowed to change sex on their birth certificate at all.

    Reply
  16. NobleLocks

    Nigel: “You know there’s blah blah blah… crimes of individuals within that group.

    Because if you do, I guarantee you’re not ready for what ciscrimes.com would say about you.”

    I know what whataboutery.com would say about you…

    Reply
  17. Darrens

    the application of symbols to enscribe identity as a public performance within a world shaped by private rights and ownership …. would it be that surprising that a system could find its symbolic expression where its technological emergence makes contact with the human subject whose control it is organised around… religion means bringing together … the writer might consider to ask herself who is that gender based theory brings together if it is to be seen as a religion … or who does resistance to it seem to bring together… doubtless the writer knows who her audience is

    Reply
  18. Estelle

    In our schools, health services, third level institutions. In the arts. In BeLonGTo, in TENI and in any place or institution where these organisations have acted as ‘consultants’ or ‘advisers’.

    Reply
  19. Madam X

    For a supposedly educated woman she sure writes some rubbish. Bodger you need people with some brains writing. Your standards are dropping badly

    Reply
      1. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

        I have auch better feeling for who Collette is after that,
        As a very different type of woman, one who the term belly nest makes queezy, I don’t understand why a third trans catégorie wouldn’t please everyone, especially in sports.

        Reply
      2. Mad

        Fair play to you for struggling through that, you’re a better man than me, a real “man’s” man indeed

        Reply
  20. SOQ

    Two points- well questions actually.

    Why is it that the controversy is always about biological males in women’s sports and spaces, but never the other way around? And as for some of those- to parrot Rose of Dawn- at least make an effort- three days beard is not making an effort.

    Why is nobody talking about the fact that the vast majority of now people who want to transition are actually young women who want to be men? Is it so unreasonable to wonder if there may be some sort of internalised misogyny going on there? Or that at the very least, the possibility should be investigated?

    I just really dislike the way the trans issue is now shoe horned into everything, despite the fact that the numbers do not warrant such. The recent gay murders for example or when talk of a new women’s only club. In both cases such small numbers affected, yet they still MUST be the centre of attention. It is actually quite immature.

    Reply
  21. E'Matty

    Why do trans rights people claim gender is a social construct but then define the gender of a trans person based on aspects of that “social construct”? So, a child born biologically male but, feels like he thinks a girl feels, may act physically in a way a girl does, maybe likes “girly” things, and when he transitions to she, will invariably dress up as that social construct tells us a girl does. If it’s a purely social construct, surely no real change would be required? Why dress up in clothes the social construct says are girls clothes? Are they not supposed to be rejecting the social construct itself? One could simply decide, this is my gender, and continue living as they are. By a male to female trans dressing in women’s clothes, or vice versa, does that not make a bit of a joke of the social construct as an issue? To “become their true self” the person had to adopt elements of the social constructs view of how a boy or girl dresses, behaves, and so on? All a bit of a contradiction.

    Reply
    1. Miriam Cotton

      If you’re looking for logic in this ideology E’Matty you will be looking a very long time. It’s riven with contradictions – a direct and obvious consequence of attempting to deny reality. Reality keeps asserting itself nevertheless, as it must, so the mind-bending contortions of genderism grow ever more ridiculous. If biological sex isn’t real and ‘gender’ is a social construct, what on earth is anyone transing from or to? Why bother at all! Aren’t we all some sort of…I dunno…blob things? The whole sorry mess of nonsense disappears up its own bum the instant it makes contact with fact and reality. Every time. And this is the reason why the ideological charlatans at TENI and BelongTo are compelled to scream ‘NO DEBATE’. It’s because there is indeed no debating reality and fact. And fine well they all know it too. But laugh though we must at the idiocy of it all, the underlying pathology here of the gender extremists and bullies (and its questionable how many actually sex dysphoric people this cohort includes) – is a very ugly truth; the genderists (mtf in particular) are insanely jealous of the object of their desire. They want to inhabit, own, dominate, delegitimise and replace us. The very words used to describe our reality cannot be said without a chorus of narcissistic rage tantrums. Hence ‘chest feeders’ and ‘uterus havers’ but absolutely NOT ‘woman’ – never that. That’s the point of contact with reality. This is what they really mean by ‘inclusivity’ – the exclusion of reality. The entire religion is a mass of meaning inversion – that’s the core of its mysticism, the leap of faith that’s demanded. It’s all madness.

      Reply
  22. Oro

    This website profits per click, or page view presumably? It is therefore in their financial interest to post these kinds of articles knowingly, the past precedent of hundreds of nasty comments coming up as dollar signs (or sorry ruple signs) in their eyes.

    It seems extraordinarily cynical to pursue an editorial line against a minority in society, that allows you, through further stigmatisation and jeering of those people, to capitalise monetarily off that process, especially considering it’s all done anonymously. Every hateful comment adding to the money pile. Was Colette paid for this article out of interest? Is there any ethical complication at stake here? The men who own this site clearly dislike trans people, otherwise they wouldn’t publish these articles, or would moderate the comments (like they do to protect their favs).

    I’m sure this comment (as is usual) will be deleted.

    Reply
      1. Oro

        I thought you were visiting an internet sanatorium for a well deserved (and needed) mental health break, didn’t you say that? “And I’m NEVER COMING BACK!!!1!” Haha. Take a baby aspirin and calm down next time, it won’t be as embarrassing x.

        Reply
          1. Mad

            Never said I wasn’t coming back and among key considerations in my shortening the proposed duration of my break were the persistence of prics like you in celebrating it.

    1. Ian - oG

      @ Oro – nobody takes this place seriously anymore.

      In fact it’s fantastic that this is the septic tank that Collettes article ended up – pondscum articles will always find their level. Whether its the Daily Misogynist or the Scum.

      Now when anyone engages on the topic I can easily point them to the sort of utter filth that has been posted here the last two years, right up the recent Stone Toss Nazi comics. No getting around that, I’ve kept literally hundreds of links to objectionable Broadsheet content and have made sure to disseminate it wide and far.

      Now I can safely say that Collette article was published on a website that posts horrific, bullying cartoons mocking everything from race to suicide and mental health to homophobia and Nazi propaganda.

      Bit of a change from the Irish Times. Why did they drop the article? Well someone with a hint of moderty might wonder at the article and if it was perhaps, total hyperbolic(s), a dyed in the wool fanatic though? Never. Just project your own religious ardour onto others instead, far easier.

      LOL

      Reply
      1. GiggidyGoo

        I’ve looked and looked – I don’t see any of your comments on your beloved Irish Times site.

        ‘I’ve kept literally hundreds of links to objectionable Broadsheet content and have made sure to disseminate it wide and far.’ You obviously take this site seriously then.

        Reply
        1. Ian - oG

          What comments were you looking for on the Irish Times? A newspaper I regularly criticise and rarely read? Not sure how you got the beloved tag but I am sure you will go and find all the comments where I laud it? Best of luck with that.

          I don’t take this site seriously as a news outlet, big difference. I do take it seriously as a disseminator of fake news, conspiracy theories and all sorts of phobias and ‘ism’.

          I’ve seem some pretty nasty commentary on here, this thread for example where one poster is allowed call another a groomer with impunity, threats to dox and quite personal insults. I am not above the odd insult but generally stick to calling some stupid/thick/ignorant if I think their comments are that.

          Now, if you want to have a discussion, have at it, but you will have to be a bit clearer as to what it is you want to discuss, my apparent love for the Irish Times is not a thing so not sure what it is you want here?

          Reply
        2. GiggidyGoo

          A basic point – you haven’t the facility to make a comment on the Irish Times website (unless, of course you want to pay for the privilege). You spend your time though lambasting a site (BS) that does allow comment (yes, your comments too), and that does allow alternative views to be aired which the mainstream, as you’ve pointed out, the Irish Times doesn’t.

          You take BS seriously alright – so much so, that you’ve ‘kept literally hundreds of links to objectionable Broadsheet content and have made sure to disseminate it wide and far.’

          Big swinging mickey.

          Reply
          1. Ian - oG

            Aaaaaaaand?

            You have literally just repeated some things and added a few just to make up words.

            Do you have an actual point here?

            Is it that you made an incorrect assumption that I was an avid reader of the Irish Times? Is that you are incapable of parsing out the different between taking something seriously in one manner but not in another? Is your point is that BS is great that it allows all comments and the Irish Times doesn’t? Is it that you haven’t the wit to make an actual point so you just throw some word salad up and then finish with something that indicates a huge ‘so what’? If it such a big swinging mickey moment why are you so triggered by my comments? Is a lie down required?

            Come back to me with an actual point there GG and we can chat, until then….crickets.

          2. GiggidyGoo

            I’ve made the points – in fact I’ve addressed the points you were making. Unfortunately you’ve tunnel vision and can’t (don’t want to) see them. That is, as you term it, the wit to see them – which you haven’t got.

            Word salad is an apt description for your last post. Grow up. If you don’t like the place, well there are other places you can go to, in order to seek opinions closer to yours – cricketville in other words.

          3. Ian - oG

            After all that your point essentially was ‘if you don’t like it go elsewhere?’ What about the Irish Times, where did they come into it, did you read something that triggered you perhaps? Was tissue needed?

            Some man for the freeze speech giggly, I’ll be staying right here. Now I know it brings you to tears I will double my efforts!

            Thanks….

            ;)

          4. GiggidyGoo

            The points are there. You just ignore them and continue with your own little bag of ramblings.
            You mentioned the Irish Times by the way. That’s how it came into it. You can’t even keep up with your own verbal diarrhea.
            Toddle along now.

          5. SOQ

            Ian – oG knows a couple of ‘Trans’ people you see- that makes him most knowledgeable- Nigel in drag basically.

          6. Ian - oG

            SOQ: I’m being bullied!!!!

            Also SOQ: Let’s pile in with a comment in a separate conversation with no other purpose than to try to cause insult or offence.

            hahahahaha

            Then we have giggly goop and the inane viewpoints. Seeing as you’re clearly too dumb to get the Irish Times reference I made, I will, just this one, throw you a bone pops.

            Collette was meant to have this dribble published in the Irish Times. They clearly took one look and decided it wasn’t for them. So your entire point around the Irish Times is completely voided, bless but you are just not that intelligent.

            You two deserve each other.

            ;)

            Oh, hang on, nearly forgot! Waaaaah, whinge, whinge, whinge, I AM BEING BULLIED!!!! LOL

            I’m not really, bullying denotes abuse within a disproportionate power dynamic. Which is not what is happening here.

            hahahahaha

            Enjoy how society is going lads, it doesn’t scare the bejaysus out of me, but clearly it does for you two. Maybe call the ghostbusters?

            ”I ain’t afraid a no pronoun…..lol”

          7. GiggidyGoo

            Good man Ian. Eventually you’ll get there. You asked where the reference to the Irish Times came from – it came from you. Now when it’s referenced back to you as a media outlet that doesn’t allow thinking beyond what they want (and the likes of you want), you can’t understand why.

            And then you go into childish meltdown. You’ve a very similar modus operandi to Nigel. Many inverted comma quotations of other posters comments, and then the last chance saloon when all else fails – childish scutter. Grow up lad.

      2. SOQ

        You, a straight man, gets to decide what is or is not homophobia? No you bloody do not. Gay people get to make that call, even Diarmuid Martin the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland conceded that point.

        As for Nazi propaganda- convenient how like most you are blind to it when it is staring you straight in the face- like Ukraine.

        And when it comes to mental health- some of the bullying I have personally endured on this site would have flipped many over the edge- by so called progressives of course- regressives more like.

        Reply
        1. Ian - oG

          A) I know homophobia, racism and similar when I see. I do not make the call on whether it is or not, I just recognise it.

          B) I am not talking about Ukraine, I actually rarely comment on it at all. I am talking about the Stone Toss comics that Bodger or Nick posted.

          C) I’ve actually spoken up about the pile-ons against you and try not to engage if I see a bunch of posters all replying to one individual.

          Reply
      3. Oro

        @Ian – Thanks for the context re the article being dropped by other publications. Wow this comment thread got a lot worse overnight :|
        I can’t believe anyone would accept the centra premise of this dross that anything to do with LGBTQ+ politics is religious. What a mess.

        Reply
  23. CJ

    i suppose studying religion so long, it probably makes trans look like another belief system. however, the premis describing it as such is incorrect.
    Plenty of trans people on twitter going blue in the face from trying to explain, why not follow a few of them and hopefully the penny might drop.

    Reply
    1. SOQ

      But Trans on twitter are no more presentative of Transgender people than anyone else in the real world? Anyone call themselves Trans but an over weight slob with an edgy multi coloured haircut and six day facial growth is not Transgender.

      I don’t know what they are- but they most definately NOT Transgender.

      Reply
          1. paul

            I’ll accept my misuse of the term and aim to correct it in the future but it still leaves you gate-keeping an expression of gender. Not a great look.

          2. SOQ

            I am merely pointing out that Twitter is not representative of the Trans community.

            If you want to define such as being ‘gate keeping’ then that is up to you- I call it common sense myself.

          3. paul

            identifying someone who says that they are Trans and you saying that they are not is the definition of gate-keeping. I hope you don’t engage in this behaviour elsewhere.

            no one website is wholly representative of a single group of people, that much is true. The same that two people sat side by side, regardless of background, appearance or lifestyle are not the same person.

          4. SOQ

            The ‘Trans’ umbrella has many more identities in there other than Transgender, running from the likes of non binary through the whole Queer spectrum right to professional drag queens.

            Just look at what Rose of Dawn has to say about how they even define what a woman is to see that it is a very crowed space- so much so that real transgender now feel their voices are being drowned out.

            https://www.broadsheet.ie/2022/04/26/colette-colfer-a-new-religion/#comment-2424034

            So yes that is a criticism, but not of REAL Transgender people, quite the opposite.

      1. Ian - oG

        You literally just wrote this a few minutes ago SOQ:

        ”You, a straight man, gets to decide what is or is not homophobia?”

        So, I put it back that you, cisgender man, gets to decide what is or is not a trans gender person?

        Also, why use words like overweight slob, why discuss their appearance at all?

        You like to claim victimhood when it suits but that bullying you are complaining about, has it ever occurred to you that you might be engaging in bullying yourself? Making spiteful comments about someone’s appearance is the very definition of bullying.

        Reply
        1. SOQ

          Your commentary was relation to this site. The only homophobia I see is where people like keep getting their sexuality dragged up as though there is a template of what opinions we should hold. That is ‘liberal’ homophobia- and to be honest I’d prefer the original, because at least you know what you are dealing with.

          As for my slob comment- I despise those sorts- and so do many Transgender. They have no intention of ever transitioning and have hijacked the transgender movement to promote their own political ideologies.

          Go educate yourself on what is happening in that space please- it is not nice- and as per usual, it is the innocent who are getting hurt.

          Reply
          1. paul

            is expressing confusion that a gay man would support a murderous homophobic regime homophobia? I suppose, by your own admission, you’re the only person that can make that call.

            If someone has engaged in actual homophobia against you then absolutely report them to the website. Nobody should be made to suffer for things outside of their control.

          2. Ian - oG

            I can assure you I know more about this issue than most.

            As for people bringing up people’s sexuality, the only time I note it is being brought up in reaction to you constantly bringing it up when it suits.

            My only engagement about your sexuality is to query why you would have such a high opinion of people who would at best, like you keep your sexuality to yourself or more likely kill you if they could. If this is distressing to you to the point you feel it is homophobia then perhaps avoid bringing it up yourself, if not then expect people to comment on things you comment on.

            Also, at this stage your claims of homophobia ring quite hollow against people when you are actively promoting the view points of actual, kill-you-for-being gay homophobes. I know plenty of gay people, male and female and I take their lead on these matters, not yours so feel free to don the mantle of victim if you like but you are not actually arguing with a heterosexual mans opinion, you are arguing with the opinion of the vast amount of LGBT+ people. Because they have enough self respect to avoid promoting people who would see them dead, Have whatever political ethos you like, nobody is saying you have to adhere to any particular one but when you take the side of people like Ron DeSantis and the rest of the GQP you do look somewhat….erratic.

            As for your slob comment, you are merely relaying what you perceive and making it out to be a definitive thing. Not one of the trans gender people I know go around with beards, all are on hormones, all began at the earliest early 20s and are fastidious in their appearance. So perhaps the examples you cite are not the best examples to base an entire sweeping comment on?

            I could make some comments on the physical appearance of some people, I choose not to because I am neither cruel nor stupid.

          3. SOQ

            Oh so we should be grateful with being confined to a certain brand of politics because we are not being thrown off tall buildings or hung from cranes is it?

            If gay people are treated differently IN ANY WAY then that is homophobia- and that includes criticising them for not fitting into what you perceive they should be.

            As for ‘Trans’ issue- if you think that it is now only real transgender in that space- meaning people in the process of transition- then you are very wrong. It is now dominated by the Queer Politics crew, but that is not just my opinion- that is the opinion of traditional Trans activists too.

            Boy George- Britain’s first gender bender, is now transphobic apparently- enough of the BS.

          4. Ian - oG

            ”Oh so we should be grateful with being confined to a certain brand of politics because we are not being thrown off tall buildings or hung from cranes is it?”

            Nope, but it would make more sense if you were not promoting people who actually do want to throw gay people off buildings or hung from cranes.

            ”If gay people are treated differently IN ANY WAY then that is homophobia- and that includes criticising them for not fitting into what you perceive they should be.”

            People are just ‘asking questions’, I thought that was a good thing, no? Which is it? But you equating people querying your choices does not make it homophobia no much now much you need it to be. You can be as right or left wing as you like but when you start to big up real homophobes like Putin people are perfectly entitled to ask why, you are perfectly entitled to not answer them but you getting all emosh about it is irrelevant.

            ”As for ‘Trans’ issue- if you think that it is now only real transgender in that space- meaning people in the process of transition- then you are very wrong. It is now dominated by the Queer Politics crew, but that is not just my opinion- that is the opinion of traditional Trans activists too.”

            Being trans gender is a broad church, but you appear to only put faith in to Trump supporting trailer trash. As for traditional trans activists, I know plenty thanks, real ones mind, not some halfwit on Twitter.

            ”Boy George- Britain’s first gender bender, is now transphobic apparently- enough of the BS.”

            Boy George convicted criminal? Who cares what he does or does not say, he’s a smack and coke head who likes to chain people up and beat them.

            However, ‘gender benders’ have been around long before him.

          5. SOQ

            And who exactly have I promoted that is throwing people of tall buildings? If you are referring to Russia I have made it perfectly clear that BOTH Ukraine and Russia both have a terrible record on gay rights.

            Do you honestly think that the Azov Nazis are gay friendly? Really? Except I am not the one cheering them on. Their treatment of gay people is well documented, including the burning of rainbow flags.

            You are actually trying to tie Trump into the a Trans debate? Funny- and absolutely clueless.

            Running Boy George’s credentials in this area down? What exactly are YOUR credentials eh? He and Marylin were hammering around in all sorts at a time when it was REALLY dangerous to do so.

            And all this because you know a couple of transgender people- well, isn’t that nice.

          6. Ian - oG

            I’m well aware of the Azov nazis and am on record here as not being a fan of Zelensky. So tick that box.

            But you have shown time and again your admiration for Putin and others who are not as honest like DeSantis and other GQPers.

            So Trump has nothing to do with the trans debate no, funny that.

            Hammering down the ‘credentials’ whatever that means of a man who chained another man to a radiator while beating him and was subsequently tried and convicted of such? You’re damn right I am. That’s before we go to his substance abuse.

            But yes, it is nice that I know some trans gender people, even call some of them friends. But just to be sure I asked them and they said Ian -oG, it’s totally alright for you to speak about us, only nazis would presume to tell someone what they can or cannot talk about.

            Anyway, feel free to reply there, I know how much you love the last word. I’ll do my best to reply.

            But just on a last word, you are right about Boy George and Marylin back in the day, they were quite brave and don’t you worry, if the people you admire get their way a whole new generation of people will get to experience the same sort of open hostility and get to react with the same bravery they did. Well done.

          7. SOQ

            A couple of genuine questions

            Have you ever even discussed the internal politics of the Trans movement with anyone? Do you even know why so many REAL Transgender people can’t be bothered with it anymore?

            Do you even know why Boy George was called a transphobe?

            Do not try to smear me for raising such issues- I am well versed on what is going on in that space.

          8. Ian - oG

            SOQ, I am not trying to smear you at all although I will make the odd barb about your choice of fellow travellers.

            Rarely have I actually made a personal comment directly at you, merely some of your choices. I have I am sure said you were being a bit thick, acting the clown or similar but that’s about it.

            If my last comment was a bit nasty then I retract it, I don’t really think you want that sort of world to return, especially when so much of it never really went away.

            But yes, I have discussed the issue and yes as I have already said, there is a broad church in that community and there is a view that some people who identify as being trans gender do not seem to fully grasp what is to be genuinely trans gender and as such are met with suspicion and even hostility.

            But I will leave you with this – I have no dispute with your politics, some of my best friends for my sins are conservatives and I love them all the same, same with some of my family but if makes sense, I’d be as curious of you, as a northern Nationalist (I presume?) being a supporter of the DUP as I would you being a gay man who supports them. You being gay is just the contrast that seems out of place but if it bothers you I will not refer to it again. I am not here to cause anyone upset or insult….well, maybe a little insult but certainly not upset, life is too short.

      2. Oro

        I STG SOQ you are tragic, would you ever quit your shrieking about being bullied when your general output is as nasty as this. You don’t get to decide who is trans or not. That is so offensive.

        Also while we’re on the subject, you’ve mentioned your own weight on here before, and let’s just say…..glass houses? FWIW I don’t consider being overweight a bad thing, but it’s so weird for you to use it pejoratively having mentioned your own weight before putting you in that class. As much projection as any day I suppose.

        Reply
  24. Theo HOPKINS

    As an English lad, who was an atheist at the age of nine, and who was spirited from grey bombed-out London to a Protestant school in the green fields and lakes of Co Fermanagh in 1950, I developed an understanding of how religion worked, while remaining absolutely an atheist. I am totally aware of the strange, religious and cult-like nature of the trans ‘thing’.
    And like the Protestant religion around me in Fermanagh in 1950, two of the things I find so similar to Paisley’s Presbyterianism, is the utter confidence in the rightness of their thinking, as seen in the ‘Trans women are women, trans men, yada, yada…’ catechism and the expulsion of heretics and heathens, these being the TERFs and Transphobes of today.

    Reply
    1. Mad

      Ah that’s lovely that you escaped Britain
      Yet your ingrained malevolent ignorance remains a little more stubborn to rid yourself of. Good luck with trying.

      Reply
    2. Estelle

      Interesting perspective because most of us see this new religion in similar terms to Irish Catholicism. But, of course, you have had a really strong experience of this kind of no debate indoctrination in the North. Thanks for posting this. I’d like to hear more of what you have to say about this.

      Reply
  25. Theo HOPKINS

    Transition will always fail.
    .
    Not all women can carry a child, but only a woman can carry a child.
    No trans woman will ever carry a child.
    Not all men can father a child, but only men can father a child.
    No trans man will ever father a child.
    .
    There will never, ever, be a true trans person.

    Reply
  26. Anna Ben

    Interesting article. I don’t believe in any god but I was unfortunately baptised Catholic so I’m familiar with the controlling nature of their belief system and their zealots.

    The way people react to people who don’t believe in gender identity is insane. Religious fanatics chanting their favourite line “Trans women are women” while denying material reality then calling others bigoted for not subscribing to their ideology.

    I don’t believe trans women are actual women the same way I don’t believe sea horses are actual horses or sea lions are actual lions. You can shout bigotry and transphobia all you want but it is neither hateful nor is it a phobia to NOT believe in other people’s perception of themselves.

    Of course people shouldn’t be discriminated against but the demand to adhere to the belief system of “they/them/ze/zim”, “I identify as” and “trans lesbians” is both irksome and laughable. It’s like a competition of narcissistic individuals.

    We’re actually at a stage where biological males who wear dresses and make up refer to themselves “trans lesbians” calling actual female lesbians transphobic for not wanting to include penises in their dating pool. How pathetic. Not to mention, homophobic.

    Reply
    1. SOQ

      It is most definately homophobic, from start to finish. From the brainwashing of children that upon confusion they MUST be in the wrong body right through to self identification, which in the case of MTF doesn’t even require a dress and makeup anymore.

      Without any effort a heterosexual male can now claim discrimination when a lesbian turns down their offer- that is how ridiculous it has gotten. Gay men are a bit more upfront about such and a request for a dick pic usually ends the conversation.

      What the hell is wrong with being a butch dyke or a camp queen now? When did they become such bad things? NO minor should be able to take any steps towards gender reassignment until they are an adult. Rousing parents is completely the wrong way to go about progressing Transgender rights.

      Reply
      1. Estelle

        I agree totally SOQ. I’m not sure what ‘advancing trans rights’ would look like though. What rights do trans identified people NOT have that other people do have? Trans identified people must and do enjoy all the rights and all the responsibilities that all others enjoy.

        Reply
        1. SOQ

          As far as the law goes yes but there is still a lot of prejudice abound. In a way. changing the law is the easy bit- changing people’s attitudes is somewhat harder. But IMO in the same way as gay people, getting on with their lives is the way to do that.

          Being the first wave of anything is never easy and I understand that militancy can be a self defence mechanism, but creating an atmosphere where people are afraid to speak is counter productive – and just plain wrong.

          Reply
      2. Derek

        OMG yeah we gays love our willy pics. The first thing I ask any other gay man when I meet is to see his willy pic. Made my last job interview a bit awkward though.

        Reply
  27. Hughie Luas

    It’s a tragedy to see the departure of Francesca McDonagh from BOI. It’s vital that Irish girls have strong women role models.

    Reply
  28. The Urban Leprechaun.

    Should I ‘respect’ trans people even if I disagree with trans theory? Many writers do say they respect trans people.
    No! I see no reason to see trans people as other than suffering from an illness of the mind or are just deluded. Neither illness nor delusion is intrinsically worthy of respect.

    Reply
    1. SOQ

      Having a personality disorder does not mean someone is mentally ill- so why do you assume someone with gender dysphoria is?

      Reply
      1. Urban Leprechaun

        A transgender identity is a delusion.
        Such a delusion is evidence of a mental illness.
        That person may require sympathy – but not respect.
        There are occasionally people who think they are Jesus – such people are deluded. They may get my sympathy but not my respect.

        Reply
        1. SOQ

          Gender dysphoria is a recognised medical condition. I suggest you ask yourself why you have such strong feelings against that one, but not others.

          Reply
  29. Colette Colfer

    In response to some queries about my article:
    * I deliberately did not write about gender dysphoria which is a diagnosis made by a health professional. The DSM-5 criteria for diagnosis of gender dysphoria is an incongruence between expressed gender and gender at birth. People with gender identities do not all have gender dysphoria.
    * Some have said that I should have spoken to trans people for the article. The article, however, was about gender identity theory rather than about trans people. I consider gender identity theory to be something that impacts all of us, particularly when it involves the erasure of the category of biological sex. (I recommend Kathleen Stock’s excellent book ‘Material Girls’ in order to understand the potential implications of this erasure)
    * Some have said that gender identity is not a theory it is a fact. I do understand that for those who believe or subscribe to the theory, gender identity is something that is very real and, as such, it is not a theory. I was focusing specifically on the theoretical aspect of gender identity.
    * Some have said it is not a religion and, to be honest, I probably agree with this point. However, I do think there are many parallels.
    * Finally, some people have felt that it is insulting for me to make parallels between gender identity theory and religion. However, I love lots of aspects of the different world religions and I believe that belonging to a religious community and having religious beliefs can confer great benefits to an individual. So I do not have the opinion that religion is necessarily a bad thing in and of itself.

    Reply
    1. Sara

      You claimed on twitter that the Irish Times accepted your article, and then withdrew it. That’s a lie. It was never accepted for publication. Nobody withdrew it. You sent your unsolicited article to the Irish Times, a junior editor said there was a chance it would be published, but it wasn’t (possibly because it reads like an essay by a precocious thirteen year old). Lie number 2.

      Reply
      1. GiggidyGoo

        Listen Sara, Colette called you out yesterday on your lies. You exited that conversation with your tail between your legs. Colette’s full name is here. You’re hiding behind a first name, which is probably false anyway and writing what are more than likely lies about her. If you say they are truths, then show the proof.

        Reply
          1. SOQ

            And WTF do you know about transphobia?

            Who are you to lie and smear other people just because you do not agree with their opinion?

            What gives you the right to daily come onto this site with your bitchy vindictiveness?

            Go away you absolute nasty clown.

        1. Oro

          I don’t think that’s reasonable G. They disagreed with each other but neither showed real proof, so it’s not certain who is telling the truth. It’s a she said / she said situation. On the point of anonymity, the standard setting on this website is anonymity, Colette volunteered her identification, but that doesn’t necessarily put her on a higher standing than Sara by virtue of that. By that logic any disagreement you have with, oh I don’t know, Frilly would automatically put you on the lower level of credulity, which I don’t think you’d accept as fair amirite?

          Sara’s story is reasonably believable, in that there are items in it which hold some truth, and Colette’s version of events is anecdotal “oh no I don’t go to those” all well and good but that’s not categorical proven just because she said so.

          Reply
          1. Colette Colfer

            Interesting that you consider the ‘Sara’ story to contain some truth despite the fact that we know absolutely nothing about ‘Sara’. Also, the fact that I do not go to wine receptions does not preclude my wish for ‘Sara’ to out the lie by inventing some makey-uppy wine reception, which of course does not exist in the first place. My argument about the compulsion to believe clearly stands true. Again – thank you. It seems a lot of people are reading all this and they can make up their own minds.

          2. Oro

            Identifying yourself is not the only measure of newsworthiness or reliability, otherwise my other comment (that you chose to ignore lol) wouldn’t be true.

            You’ve complicated this even further, how you’re saying the wine receptions don’t exist? So you don’t go to wine receptions, although specify which one so you can confirm 100%, and also the receptions never happened in the first place? Forgive me for being confused, because, you’re confusing me.

          3. GiggidyGoo

            Well, Oro, that must be the most ridiculous post on this subject. Sara accused Colette of something. She didn’t and as far as everyone can see, including you, can’t back it up. Do you expect Colette to say that the accusations are true? ‘She said, she said’ is a load of codswallop.
            Look up anecdotal too.

        2. Oro

          There’s also something about the following two lines, taken from one of Colette’s comments upthread, that doesn’t inspire much in terms of her credability.

          “Sara, that’s very strange you met me at a wine reception as I don’t go to wine receptions – I can’t stand them.”

          “If you’d like to state which wine reception you are thinking of I’m sure the readers would be very interested to hear… then I can 100% clarify as to whether or not I was there.”

          Now to me these two quotes can’t coexist rationally. You either go to wine receptions or you don’t. The first is categorical….No I don’t go to Wine Receiptions. The second is contradictory of that first position…Let me know which event specifically, I might actually have attended. Doesn’t pass the smell test unfortunately.

          Reply
          1. bisted

            …I gave up early after four tries to post a comment about Colette Colfers attempt to call atheism a religion…I suspect this stems from the time that dreadful green used to post a weekly column…

          2. GiggidyGoo

            The simple answer to your questions Oro, is that Colette was luring Sara into a false sense of security (making her think the same as you did), and see how far Sara would go with statements she has so far been unable to back up.
            Try harder Oro.

          3. Oro

            Lol yes your fallback 5D chess response.. I forgot how you try and manipulate your common (and they are common) mistakes into “oh that was a trap” haha. You must be setting traps in oh….almost every comment you make in that case G. Such a smartie.

          4. Oro

            Btw the simpler answer to my question is that Colette is either confused, or lying. She didn’t answer my direct question about why she has several versions of events for the same thing, and the answer is she’s tied herself in knots already and she’ll only have to keep digging, so she’s ignoring it. As I said, it doesn’t pass the smell test.

          5. Colette Colfer

            I didn’t refer to atheism as a religion. I did refer to it as a belief system. Interestingly it’s classified as a ‘religion’ in the national census statistics.

      2. Colette Colfer

        Can you name the junior editor you are referring to? I think it’s important that you do this. Who are you? What’s your real name? I am using my real name here. You are engaging in lies and deceptions. Everyone can see what you are doing. It is your own undoing. You are proving the points I’ve made in my article. I am the ‘heretic’, the ‘blasphemer’ and so you try to bring me down. I appreciate you making my case so well for me. Do you really think I would be so stupid as to claim my article had been accepted and state that publicly on Twitter if it was a lie? Do you not think they have a legal team? I’m not engaging with you any more unless you use you real name.

        Reply
        1. Steph Pinker

          Don’t worry Colette, the ego has landed and already doxxed herself on a few occasions –

          … rather a Vacuous individual, so don’t let it rent space in your head.

          It’s an interesting article and a good read, thanks.

          Reply
        2. SOQ

          @ Colette Colfer

          Just a FYI- when these individuals can’t, or won’t, debate the topic at hand- they will try and drag you down into a personal confrontation. It doesn’t matter if it is true or not- it usually isn’t- the tactic is about discreditation.

          In the case of this ‘Sara’ individual, scroll to the top of the comments and you will see that his / her post was the first and roughly five minutes after your piece went up. 2:15 and 2:20 respectively. (S)he does this on a regular basis- always with an abrasive nasty comment to set the tone.

          Enjoyed the piece myself- it is a topic which is coming up all over the place at the moment, and one which is definately worth discussing.

          Reply
          1. Johnny

            Your style of debate.

            … And WTF do you know about transphobia?

            Who are you to lie and smear other people just because you do not agree with their opinion?

            What gives you the right to daily come onto this site with your bitchy vindictiveness?

            Go away you absolute nasty clown…..

            All day.
            Every day.

          2. Colette Colfer

            Thank you – and thanks to those who raised constructive points or expressed appreciation for the article. I have to say, I find the personal attacks fairly strange. Interesting though to see the tactics that are employed as a way to discredit people who think differently. I’m taking notes on it all for – hopefully – future writings.

          3. Colette Colfer

            Sara,
            do you think I care-a
            about your insults and your lies
            when you hide behind a disguise?

  30. Eliza Mann

    I find it very strange that anyone would claim that this eloquent article is “unreadable.” Can you please explain what was hard for you to read/understand? So far no one has managed to convincingly criticize Colfer’s main points–that gender identity ideology has many similarities to religious systems, but that, unlike the various religious communities she has studied, its adherents do not seem to accept others’ skepticism. Furthermore, this belief system has managed to become dominant in many institutions with little pushback, which strikes Colfer as not only unique but also worrying. Please correct me if you think these are not your central points, Colette. And if anyone wants to take a stab at refuting those actual points, rather than attacking the author, please do!

    Reply
      1. Chris

        “this is unwatchable” – yet you sought it out. What is the reason for your spite? I’d posit jealously, you’re very un-creative. Spite, lies & vitriol is your bag, and you wear it well.

        Thanks for the link, I found it enjoyable.

        Reply
    1. Derek

      If you really want someone to reply to your points I will. It’s fairly easy as Colfer’s theory is pretty badly thought out.
      The comparisons to religion I’ve dealt with in another comment below. But specifically on the point you raise about scepticism:
      The idea that religions accept other people’s scepticism is frankly laughable. In a world whose entire history has been shaped by religions conflict do I even really need to explain why this is nonsense of the highest order?

      Reply
    1. Micko

      400 posts eh?

      Glad I stayed out of it. ;-)

      Interesting that this topic never got to this level before.

      In fact, most of the previous BS “trans discussions” barely reached 100 posts (on searching, there were some exceptions of course, but seems that generally before 2019, it wasn’t a hot topic for most folks)

      You’d have to ask if the ideas and beliefs we invest so much of our time in, are actually making society better… or worse?

      Reply
  31. Derek

    Ridiculous and poorly thought out article. Likening “chants” and “holy days” to their religious supposed-equivalents is frankly bizarre. Many rights movements “chant” at protests. And any non-religious groups have celebration days. All of these apply to gay rights, black rights. A half decent academic making this argument might explore what other groups have these aspects and explain why one is a religion but the others aren’t.

    For instance, I’ve watched a bunch of gender critical women singing their own “hymn” at a protest. Hang around on their forums and you’ll often see them boycotting (M&S for example). I guess they are a religion too.

    I have to agree with an above commenter. If this was an undergrad essay I’d give it a third.

    Reply
    1. SOQ

      New levels of ‘ridiculous and poorly thought out’ troll bulling of others on broadsheet.ie first up perhaps?

      If you argue that all gay and trans people should think the same then you are both homophobic and transphobic- ¿Comprende?

      Reply
      1. Derek

        I don’t understand the grammar of your first sentence so can’t reply. Are you trying to say I’m a troll?

        I’ve never argued that all gay and trans people should think the same so not sure what you’re on about.

        Feel free to address any of the points I actually made in a follow up comment. I’m happy to debate this with you.

        Reply
        1. SOQ

          Did did not read the full comments on this thread before posting now did you?

          Nice of you to pop in- first time obviously- England is it?

          Reply
          1. Derek

            No I’m Irish. Again you did not deal with any of my points. I’m going to have to assume you can’t.

            I did read the thread. Here’s a comment from your good self:

            “Just a FYI- when these individuals can’t, or won’t, debate the topic at hand- they will try and drag you down into a personal confrontation”

            Kinda seems familiar. You ignore my points and call me English.

          2. SOQ

            Assume away- nobody gives a fupp- new name so, same tacky one-upmanship.

            Do one clown.

          3. Derek

            Here’s a comment from your good self:

            “Just a FYI- when these individuals can’t, or won’t, debate the topic at hand- they will try and drag you down into a personal confrontation”

            “Do one clown”

            The standard of debate here is amazing.

          4. SOQ

            The Derek / Sara tag team… same IP no?

            I very much doubt if it is different devices or VM’s on separate ISP or VPNs.

          5. Derek

            It’s not the same IP. And if you could check it you would know that. Presumably you’re trying to imply that you can check IPs. Please post your proof.

            Of course you won’t as we won’t have the same IP.

            Another reminder:l of your conflicting comments:

            “Just a FYI- when these individuals can’t, or won’t, debate the topic at hand- they will try and drag you down into a personal confrontation”

            “Do one clown”

    2. Colette Colfer

      The tendency of people who ‘believe’ or subscribe to this theory is to engage in a typically ad hominem fashion in order to discredit arguments or those who do not subscribe. There is the concept of a civil religion which I’m sure you are aware of. None of the belief system which have been mentioned in order to discredit my point involves an idea which can be compared to transubstantiation. No other religion/belief system I have encountered in all my years researching religions have put such pressure on people to participate/believe.

      Reply
      1. Derek

        “The tendency of people who ‘believe’ or subscribe to this theory is to engage in a typically ad hominem fashion in order to discredit arguments or those who do not subscribe.”

        You mean like SOQ’s responses to me above? I think you will find that ad hominem attacks are an (unfortunate) characteristic of internet debate and not some religious characteristic.

        “ . There is the concept of a civil religion which I’m sure you are aware of.”

        Yes I am aware of that concept. Do you have any point to make about it? I’m afraid Colette it’s not much use to a debate to drop in a concept without laying out its relation to the debate.

        “ None of the belief system which have been mentioned in order to discredit my point involves an idea which can be compared to transubstantiation.”

        Neither does gender identity. You use the impersonal “can be compared” to imply that it’s an objectively valid comparison. But realistically we can rewrite this as “Colette Colfer compares…”. You may see parallels between transubstantiation and gender identity theory but the comparison is extremely tenuous. As a trans right advocate myself, I can tell you that I don’t believe there is a magical genetic transformation. I’ve also never met any TRA that believes it either. As someone who claims to study religions or religious communities from the inside you seem quite comfortable to draw conclusions about TRA’s beliefs from the outside.
        For instance you talk of a “gendered soul”. I have never once heard a trans rights advocate use terminology like this. The term “gendered soul” was coined by GC feminists, critics of gender identity theory. As someone who is a professional at studying religions or religious communities, how seriously would you take a colleague who claimed to be trying to understand the religion but used the language of the religions detractors? If a colleague was studying Catholicism in Belfast at the height of the Troubles, would you take their conclusions seriously if they used the language that Protestants used to describe Catholic beliefs? I highly doubt it.

        Reply
        1. Colette Colfer

          I didn’t use the phrase ‘gendered soul’ – however, I did make a comparison to the idea of a soul. Would you say that gender identity is something that exists as something separate to the body? That was my point in making that comparison. I am happy to hear your perspective on gender identity. Also, you say you don’t believe that people change genetically but do you believe that people can change sex? Can a man become a woman or a woman become a man? I want to stress that I do not see religion as something negative. Religions can be hugely important. Belonging to a religious group can confer enormous benefits to a person (in terms of health and psychology). My main point in the article was about the compulsion to believe. If people do not subscribe to the theory they are often insulted or ostracised. Does everyone have to believe there is such a thing as gender identity?

          Reply
          1. Derek

            “I didn’t use the phrase ‘gendered soul’ – however, I did make a comparison to the idea of a soul. Would you say that gender identity is something that exists as something separate to the body? That was my point in making that comparison. I am happy to hear your perspective on gender identity.”

            No gender identity is not separate to the body. And as someone involved in TRA activism and knowing a lot of TRAs, I can tell you the only people who have ever suggested that TRAs think this are GC feminists. So again I ask why are you presenting yourself as someone who engages with the communities she studies while describing one of those communities from the perspective of their detractors?

            Keep in mind that we cannot see sexualities, we cannot touch them, we cannot know someone’s sexuality by looking at them. Does that mean that gay people believe they have a soul with a gay sexuality? Of course not. Identities, attitudes, beliefs, knowledge, etc. Are all part of the mind, an abstraction of the physical processes in a physical organ (the brain). Just because you can’t see a gender identity or measure it, does not mean that someone who states they have a gender identity believes in magic and souls.

            “ Also, you say you don’t believe that people change genetically but do you believe that people can change sex? Can a man become a woman or a woman become a man?”

            This question shows a lack of even basic understanding of gender identity. You’ve conflated being a man or woman with biological sex. The most basic tenet of gender identity is that gender and sex are not the same thing and that manhood or womanhood is not exclusively determined by sex. Again you are claiming to be coming from the perspective of someone who attempts to understand a community from within, while at the same time are showing you have made what seems to be almost zero effort to engage with this particular communities ideas.

            “ . If people do not subscribe to the theory they are often insulted or ostracised. Does everyone have to believe there is such a thing as gender identity?”

            But as with all your points that supposedly display that gender identity is a religion you dismiss these points when raised for other similar communities. As you can clearly see, I made one post on this comment section and was immediately told to “Do one, clown”. Now maybe you think being told to “Do one”, and being called a “clown” are polite conversation but I’m pretty sure you can recognise this as an insult. Why is it that when a non-TRA displays no intellectual engagement and jumps straight to an insult is this uninteresting and not indicative of anything but if a TRA did it it would be a sign of them protecting their religion? And it is in no way limited to TRAs. Go on Twitter and post that two gay men shouldn’t be allowed raise children, or that black people have tendencies towards criminality, or that Putin was right to invade the Ukraine. The responses will not be “oh we respectfully disagree”. The responses will be insulting and there would most definitely be attempts to cancel you. But you will want to handwave this away and portray the modern internet culture (which I agree is awful) as separate to what you perceive as TRA attempts to protect their “religion”.

            Let’s summarise your attempts to use features to categorise gender identity as a religion:
            – chants: shared by every single protest movement. Gay rights, black rights, liberalism, conservatism, trade unionism, the list is endless.
            – holy days: both gay rights and black rights have these, nationalist movements have them (independence days)
            – heretics/insulting opponents etc.: this is common across all social and political debates online. As displayed by how I was insulted the moment I posted here. So gay rights and black rights movements and nationalist movements all have toxic internet debates complete with cancellations and doxxing etc.

            You could attempt to fall back on transubstantiation again but no TRA actually believes that. It’s a very tenuous connection that seems to encode “manhood” or “womanhood” as substances or essences in some old fashioned aristotlean philosophy.

            I could equally (and equally tenuously) claim that coming out is akin to baptism and therefore gay rights movements have an extra religious element that other groups don’t have and therefore is a religion. The idea that a tenuous link to transubstantiation is the defining factor that carries gender identity from being a movement to being a religion is completely arbitrary.

  32. Colette Colfer

    Derek thanks for your response. I understand that for you manhood and womanhood are not simply determined by biology but would you accept that for some people womanhood and manhood are determined by biology? I take your point that this doesn’t mean that gender identity is a soul but I was just making the point that there is a parallel. I agree about nationalist movements having parallels to (civil) religions – also with use of flags and remembrance days etc. I agree that in some political movements there can be a pressure to agree but I personally have never experienced this – either in politics or in religious groups – other than with gender identity theory. I’ve used the evidence of the HEA, Census, Blood Transfusion Board but I could equally add many many other public bodies who have adopted gender identity thoery. Would you agree that it is a belief system? That it is based on a theory of gender identity and that not everyone agree with this theory? Does everyone have to subscribe to this theory? Does everyone have to have a gender identity?

    Reply
    1. Nigel

      ‘but would you accept that for some people womanhood and manhood are determined by biology?’

      For some (most?) people gender and sex are in sync. That’s why they call it gender dysphoria when they aren’t, and its very existence shows that there is more going on than just biology.

      ‘I was just making the point that there is a parallel.’

      Paralell lines don’t meet, that’s why i’s important to remember that saying one thing resembles another is not saying that they’re the same, and pointing out superficial resemblances obscures far more numerous and fundamental differences.

      ‘Would you agree that it is a belief system? ‘

      Since it is based on medically recognised conditions, it is not a belief system, but a new way of thinking about something that people believe is very fixed and settled.

      In terms of not everyone agreeing with a theory – before this we had people who didn’t and still don’t agree with evolutionary theory, people who don’t agree climate change, and now people who don’t agree covid. All of tese things have been fractious and ugly, all have these have involved pressure to agree, going both ways, all of these have accused each other of being ‘like religions.’ Oddly enough, the core of anti-evolutionaries was and is fundamentalist Christianity – a literalist reading of the bible – and that core carries through into anti climate-change and anti-covid believers.

      Derek – I’m not a TRA, though I often get labeled as one, but I try to to my best in these arguments – great to have someone who really knows their stuff stepping up.

      Reply
    2. Derek

      “but would you accept that for some people womanhood and manhood are determined by biology?”

      Yes

      “I take your point that this doesn’t mean that gender identity is a soul but I was just making the point that there is a parallel.”

      My point is that there is not a parallel. At least not in any sense that would make gender identity even semi-religious. As you have pointed out, the religious soul is considered to be non-physical. Since gender identity is NOT considered to be non-physical the supposed parallels are non-existent.

      “I agree that in some political movements there can be a pressure to agree but I personally have never experienced this – either in politics or in religious groups – other than with gender identity theory.”

      It depends what you mean by pressure to agree. How is this “pressure” and the supposed desire of the pressurer (supposedly to force the pressuree to agree with them) articulated?

      What I see is not pressure on GC feminists to agree, but harshly worded criticisms of their opposing stance. I’m not minimising the rudeness and harshness of these criricisms, but unless the pressurer explicitly says the pressuree must agree with them, then i think this idea that TRAs are trying to force others to think exactly like them is just how you’ve chosen to frame things.

      But there are inherent problems to this way of framing things because it means that all debate is pressure to agree. Am I pressuring you to agree with the TRA stance by debating you? Are you pressuring me?

      In reality the gender identity issue would be like the gay marriage issue. 1/3 of Irish voters voted against it. I doubt most gay people are too enamoured with the fact that 1/3 of adults don’t see them as worthy of marriage rights and would love them to change their opinion. But once the legal victory was won, nobody felt like they needed to be pressured or forced to agree with gay marriage. And if trans rights were not under intense attack i think most TRAs would give much of a damn if a section of the population didnnkt believe that trans women were women and trans men were men.

      “Would you agree that it is a belief system?”

      I’d need you to lay out the features of what you consider a belief system to be and how gender identity fits that system and whether other similar movements that fit the criteria are belief systems or not. My suspicion is that you are trying to arrive at “gender identity is a religion and is different to other movements” by the back door. So I need to be very clear as to what I’m agreeing or disagreeing with before I answer that question.

      “That it is based on a theory of gender identity and that not everyone agree with this theory?”

      What’s the “it” here? Are you asking if gender identity theory is a theory? Yes. Does everyone have to agree with it? No.

      ” Does everyone have to subscribe to this theory?”

      No

      “Does everyone have to have a gender identity?”

      “Have to have” as in forced to agree they have one? Or do you mean “does everyone have a gender identity?” The answer to the first is no. The answer to the second is a not particularly interesting ontological question. The absence of a gender identity could be construed to be a gender identity itself. It’s similar to arguing over whether an asexual person has a sexuality which is “asexual” or does not have a sexuality. I personally would not find that an interesting debate and do not have a strong opinion on it.

      Reply
  33. Colette Colfer

    Good to know that you do accept that for some people womanhood is defined by biology. Gender dysphoria is a medical condition but gender identity is not. It is possible for people to have a gender identity without having gender dsyphoria.
    Ultimately I do believe that in Ireland people are being compelled to have a gender identity. This is apparent in our health and education systems as well as in sports, the media, and cultural organisations. Every questionnaire that asks about gender identity rather than about gender points to the compulsion to believe.
    In Ireland, gender is a protected characteristic under our equality legislation. Gender, in our equality acts, is defined as male or female (biology). And yet, this seems to be discarded in favour of gender identity across entire sectors and government departments as well as in public and private institutions. I note the proposal is to delete the word ‘woman’ from documents on the new National Maternity Hospital (as an aside).
    I have no problem with people having gender identities. I don’t see them as something that are rooted in physicality or the body but accept that you do although I would like to hear more about this as I don’t fully understand how they could be. Someone can have a gender identity that does not align with their gender for example. This suggests that it is not rooted in the physical.
    I saw images yesterday of people wearing all black and in balaclavas surrounding the statue of Emmeline Pankhurst in Manchester – purely in order to stop women meeting to discuss the importance of sex-based rights. So there is a silencing happening.
    You use the word ‘accuse’ in relation to my comparison with religion. There is an assumption, again, of religion as being something that is necessarily bad. The word religion is linked to the word religare which means ‘to bind’. Belief systems bind people into communities. Belonging to a religious group can confer emotional or psychological benefits.
    It’s good that you both are open to discussion. I find so much that in relation to this topic in particular people are unwilling to engage in civil discussion and resort immediately to name calling or accusations. I’m happy to hear more thoughts and to explore it further.

    Reply
    1. Derek

      “Good to know that you do accept that for some people womanhood is defined by biology. Gender dysphoria is a medical condition but gender identity is not. It is possible for people to have a gender identity without having gender dsyphoria.”

      Yes I know that.

      “Ultimately I do believe that in Ireland people are being compelled to have a gender identity. This is apparent in our health and education systems as well as in sports, the media, and cultural organisations. Every questionnaire that asks about gender identity rather than about gender points to the compulsion to believe.”

      Surely someone who has been compelled to believe in gender identity would know what gender identity is. I have 4 immediate family members. They have all answered various surveys from various organizations. By your logic they have been compelled to believe in gender identity. Yet not one of my immediate family members have the faintest idea what this debate is about. It’s quite extreme hyperbole to call the presence of a question about gender identity in a survey a “compulsion to believe”.

      Also how do you see the difference between gender and gender identity? We have been asked our gender for donkeys years before anyone but niche academics were talking about gender identity. Was that a compulsion to believe? Is gender the same as gender identity? If not what’s the difference?

      “In Ireland, gender is a protected characteristic under our equality legislation. Gender, in our equality acts, is defined as male or female (biology). And yet, this seems to be discarded in favour of gender identity across entire sectors and government departments as well as in public and private institutions. I note the proposal is to delete the word ‘woman’ from documents on the new National Maternity Hospital (as an aside).”

      Can you give an example (a few examples would be best) where the Equal Status Act has been invoked based on gender identity rather than biological sex? I need these examples to see what you are talking about. Because all youve mentioned so far are gender identity questions in surveys. There is no discrimination involved in asking about gender identity instead of gender so the Equal Status Act is not relevant here. If you can provide some examples we can discuss this further.

      “I have no problem with people having gender identities. I don’t see them as something that are rooted in physicality or the body but accept that you do although I would like to hear more about this as I don’t fully understand how they could be. Someone can have a gender identity that does not align with their gender for example. This suggests that it is not rooted in the physical.”

      That’s not what it suggests. To be more precise it not only suggests but states that gender identity might not align with the physical characteristics that have usually been used to determine whether someone was a man or a woman. That is different to saying that gender identity does not have a physical basis.

      “I saw images yesterday of people wearing all black and in balaclavas surrounding the statue of Emmeline Pankhurst in Manchester – purely in order to stop women meeting to discuss the importance of sex-based rights. So there is a silencing happening.”

      I think the optics of the balaclavas were awful but there was no silencing. I saw a very long video of the women’s meeting. How were they silenced? Take away the balaclavas and it would just be a standard peaceful protest. Again it is extreme hyperbole to claim women were being silenced. Why not be precise and say it was a peaceful protest with some (very unfortunate) elements of intimidation.

      “You use the word ‘accuse’ in relation to my comparison with religion. There is an assumption, again, of religion as being something that is necessarily bad. The word religion is linked to the word religare which means ‘to bind’. Belief systems bind people into communities. Belonging to a religious group can confer emotional or psychological benefits.”

      Even if you respect religions it’s pretty clear you are using the comparison to portray TRAs in a negative light. You are basically saying you don’t respect their opinions so must try and discover another reason they might hold the opinion. Oh of course it’s because it makes them feel part of a group. That’s the only reason they hols the opinion so I actually don’t have to engage with it or treat it with respect.

      Actually I shouodnt put words in your mouth. I’ll ask you directly:

      Do you believe TRAs hold their beliefs primarily to get the benefit of being part of a group.

      If so, Do you believe people who hold GC beliefs do so to benefit from being part of a group?

      ” I find so much that in relation to this topic in particular people are unwilling to engage in civil discussion and resort immediately to name calling or accusations.”

      Again I disagree. There are many contentious debates that are toxic online.

      And I’m sure you acknowledge that my initial post on this topic was met with an abusive response.

      Reply
      1. Sara

        You might be missing the point. The whole point of Colfer’s article is attention seeking. She’s a chronic attention seeker. Check out her twitter account.

        Reply
        1. Mad

          +1

          It’s the same with a lot of the guest writers on here sadly. Frilly, Fluffy and Boyle being the most obvious examples. Langwallner excepted

          Reply
      2. Colette Colfer

        Gender was a term used primarily in linguistics – grammar – up to the 1950s when it was adopted by John Money for use in his treatment of intersex patients at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore in the US. He came up with the concept of ‘gender role’ and also of gender as ‘assigned at birth’. In our Equality Act, gender is defined as biology – male and female. The concept is fluid and is understood – even in different government departments – in different ways. Gender identity is something that is separate to gender – if understood in this way. Gender identity is not necessarily rooted in biology. Surveys would probably show a lot of confusion about the term. Age differences too – older people haven’t been exposed to Gender Identity Theory as much and so there is likely to be a differential here. Certainly the concept was not around when I was growing up. People can agree or disagree on the theory – as far as I’m concerned. But I’m not a fan of it being imposed on the population and certainly I think it should be openly discussed and debated and this is not happening to the extent that I believe it needs to be. As for religion and belonging and community – yes, some people who subscribe to Gender Identity Theory do, very much, feel part of a community. Some children have been advised, for example, that their new family are those who share their beliefs on gender – if questions are raised by the family of origin. But for now I’ll bow out of the conversation. It’s good to hear the different perspectives. Thanks for engaging. As for Sara – Sara, I’m taking all of your insults as projections. It’s very telling. Lol. Take care all. And thanks to Broadsheet for publishing the article. I’m still so curious to know why the Irish Times didn’t run with it after it was accepted and scheduled for publication.

        Reply

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