Women are sharing why transphobia has no place in feminism


The deadline is approaching to fill out the government’s consultation on reforming the Gender Recognition Act.

The consultation aims to gauge public opinion on laws relating to trans and non-binary people, with the possibility of making it easier for trans people to legally change gender.

At the moment, there is no legal option for non-binary people, who consider themselves neither male nor female, to legally define as anything other than "male" or "female".

The law also dictates that married trans people also have to receive consent from their spouse to change their gender. It also states that a trans person must receive a diagnosis of gender dysphoria - a medical illness - to transition, despite the fact that being trans is not considered an illness or a disability.

The most crucial part of the consultation relates to “self-declaration”, which refers to trans people declaring their own gender. LGBT+ charity Stonewall say that greater emphasis on self-declaration within the law would make life much easier for trans people looking to legally change gender and live as their authentic selves.

Though some campaigners, who describe themselves as feminists, are opposed to self-declaration. Despite countries like Ireland and Malta introducing self-declaration measures without any significant problems, these campaigners suggest that allowing trans people to self-declare their gender could put women at risk. This has led to bitter divisions within the feminist movement, which is widely trans-inclusive.

Responding to these claims, pro-trans feminists have taken to Twitter to voice their support for the trans community and distance themselves from a minority strain of feminism that seeks to exclude trans people or undermine trans rights.

This thread is particularly powerful.

Others feminists expressed their solidarity, throwing their support behind LGBT+ charity Stonewall and its first female chief executive Ruth Hunt.

Feminist Emma Watson posted a photo of herself triumphantly wearing a t-shirt with the slogan "Trans rights are human rights".

Whereas so many others urged their followers to throw their support behind the trans community, who experience horrific levels of harassment, hate crime and attempt suicide at an alarmingly high rate compared to the general population.

Read LGBT+ charity Stonewall's information relating to the Gender Recognition Act here.

More: We asked 14 trans activists how cis people can be better allies in 2018

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