I should be able to march into the Ladies over there just because it is a nicer facility than the Gents and I feel like identifying as a woman at the moment. Ralph Palmer, the twelfth Baron Lucas, is a Tory peer, Epsilon semi-moron, and transphobe. He appears to have worked as an accountant, and voted for idiots on horseback to be allowed to torture foxes. In the House of Lords he used his well-paid and undeserved platform to attack trans women. Much hilarity arose on his suggestion that women washed their underwear in toilets, when they were menstruating, rather than “Put it in a ziploc bag and take it home,” like my friend does. His tweet asking “I should like understand how menstrual flooding is handled, and what makes for good practice” appears to have been deleted.
His transphobia is malicious as well as buffoonish. Why are we seeking to make women feel unsafe in the toilet provision we make for them—unsafe and uncomfortable? No-one desires that. He claims to want to break down gender boundaries, but acts to prevent trans people doing just that. He criticises Stonewall and the Fawcett Society for being trans inclusive and supporting Gender Recognition Reform.
Lord Blencathra’s worst transphobia needs whited out. Select text to see: when will you stand up to the small, militant, transgender fascist lobby and say that the rights of 32 million real women and 800,000 wheelchair users are more important than the rights of tens of thousands who identify as transgender? He refers to us as “hulking male brutes” terrifying women. He would keep us out of all women’s space until we had satisfied the Real Life Experience for two years. David Maclean, also a hunt supporter, should take care about calling people fascist, looking to his own party’s glass house. He avoided capital gains tax on his house, saying it was his main home, but claimed £20,000 in parliamentary expenses to do it up, claiming it was his second home.
I have heard racists claiming that if only they were asylum seekers they would get anything they wanted, and now Blencathra claims that wheelchair users need only identify as trans, then a whole industry would have moved into high gear to get us access to anywhere we wanted in the country, and no doubt we would have had the police running around as well, checking out wheelchair transgender hate crimes.
Emma Nicholson said that trans women should undergo physical changes before being allowed in women’s space- surgery or at least hormones. She claimed that the Equality Act required that. The minister, Olivia Bloomfield, pointed out that was not true, and that trans people should be treated according to the gender they present.
Baroness Grey-Thompson wants trans folk consigned to gender-neutral toilets, and talked of “horrible” sex abusers.
Not all the Lords in that debate were transphobic.
Baroness Brinton said, The data does not show us that transwomen are more dangerous than anybody else. On the contrary, there is considerable evidence that LGBT people, especially transpeople, are more likely to be attacked, more likely to suffer abuse and hate crime and more likely to be at risk of suicide because of the pressure. I just hope that we can pause for a moment and consider how a transwoman, portrayed as a possible danger to families by some, might feel.
Baroness Elizabeth Barker said the debate continued without moving on. I do not think that we are doing women any great favours by increasing their fears without an evidence base on which to do so. Where there are toilet scares, she says, lesbian women who look very butch get challenged going into women’s toilets… it is men whom women should fear: it is not trans women who are the perpetrators of the crimes against them. It is tragic that needs to be said.
The debate is here.