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activism Labour media Politics prejudice women

Forced teaming has dreadful consequences

Imagine Neptunian people are your thing (I know, I know but just imagine… ). Imagine the Neptunian Support Group has been the centre of your life and activity for decades. Then one day, the Neptunian Support Group is offered a load of funding for promoting Plutonian welfare. I mean, Plutonians are nice and all that, but how are you going to react when the charity you volunteer for because of your love of Neptune says you must not do anything without mentioning Plutonians, then progresses into telling you that Neptunians don’t matter, and in a way don’t exist, and you must not mention them because to do so would be ‘Pluto exclusionary’.

It’s bizarre, isn’t it – in no time at all you’d be getting frustrated and saying quite rude things about Plutonians. What if you were then roundly told off for being ‘anti-Plutonian’ when you talk about Neptune? If you were sensible, you’d probably walk away from the not-very-Neptunian not-very-supportive-Support Group at that point and refocus your attention, maybe start another group for Neptunians. What if the former Neptunian Support Group then called your group an ‘anti-Plutonian hate group’, and started trashing anyone who had anything to do with your organisation?

I expect you’ll agree with me that that Neptunian Support Group has done real and lasting harm to both Neptunian and Plutonian welfare by turning what was a lot of good work by very committed people into a bitter war.

One could be forgiven for thinking that the powers that be were aiming to make all those people hate each other but no, it’s just money. It’s always money. For the last 30 years or so, there have been huge streams of funding available, usually coming from the USA, for Plutonians, so Neptunian charity and political organisations have been determined that Neptunians should shut up while they rake it in.

What if, as trusted, benevolent charities, several Neptunian Support organisations have been going into schools and recruitment organisations, teaching them to prioritise Plutonian needs over Neptunians? What if they even have quasi-academics arguing that Neptunians don’t really exist as a meaningful category, and extrapolating on this, have attempted to persuade the government to cancel Neptunian legal rights in favour of Plutonians’? What if their activist base is a bunch of angry kids who’ve been convinced Neptunians are their enemy?

—–

It started out as ‘LGB’ – a grouping of people with same-sex orientation. Then more and more categories – categories that were *not* same-sex orientation were added – to grow the organisations? To attract more funding? Heaped on top of a series of bad decisions made since funding streams changed back in the late 20th century, Stonewall and other organisations have been neglecting and negating actual L G and B people, and yet have decreed that L G and B people should not go off and set up their own organisations.

Guess what he found – T, T and more T. No L, G or B

The main reason Pride marches have hit the news for most of us in recent years has been amateur videos of incidents where members of LGB organisations have been hounded off marches for being ‘exclusionary’. Now, the Labour Party has joined in the trouble-making by making two extremely contradictory decisions.

They have recently accepted ‘Labour Trans Equality’ as a ‘Friends of Labour’ group, and then told ‘Lesbian Labour’ they cannot be Friends because there is already an LGBT+ group affiliated to the party, and ‘it is against the rules to establish new groups that might duplicate the work and status of existing groups’. So you can break away from the many-headed LGBT+ to set up an additional T group, but you can’t have one that’s only L, G or B? Looks like a clear case of discrimination against a protected characteristic to me. Oh my, here come *more* court cases….

The malais is spreading to the mistreatment of other protected characteristics. London has taken to putting apparently LGBT+ friendly road-crossings all over the place, causing people to complain that road crossings no longer look like road-crossings, and reps for disability groups say they are causing confusion and danger. Councillors are following the well-funded habit of being aggressive in ‘defence’ of LGBT+.

Fortunately for the UK, this situation will not last. Gay men have a good voice whatever their opinion.

And lesbian politics has always been a strong force within British feminism. Fortunately, no-one has ever known how to shut them up. One day, someone will ask why so many powerful organisations *try* to shut them up. Maybe someone should have asked that back at the start of the century, when Julie Bindel warned Ruth Hunt (CEO of Stonewall) that tacking the T onto LGB to court funding would cause conflict.

Lesbian Labour

LGB Alliance

Categories
activism Labour media Politics Uncategorized women

Apparently, we came out of nowhere

(in case you’ve forgotten, ‘nowhere’ is ‘the real world’)

Today, the BBC published an article about lesbians, about how same-sex attracted people feel when pushed to accept ‘gender’ instead of ‘sex’, and see their clubs, social sites and groups filling up with members of the opposite sex as a result.

Objecting to that, according to the misogynists over on twitter, is just transphobia. They are *terribly* upset over on Twitter. They say all those women came out of nowhere, that they must be a plot by MI5, or funded by … some rich mysterious person.

Well what else could possibly explain it? Consider the growth of the Labour Women’s Declaration. A couple of years ago, it was a group of 20 Labour Party women, sitting in a circle, planning a statement of women’s rights. Those women contacted their friends, particularly any fellow Labour Councillors they knew, and ‘from nowhere’, 20 women became 300 founder-signatories to the Declaration. The signatories told their friends and now, 2 years on, the Labour Women’s Declaration has, including the founders, over 7000 signatories.

( Here is the LWD’s open letter to the BBC, about that article. )

There is also Lesbian Labour, and groups in the Green, Lib Dem and Tory parties and also (because women are good at networking) a group co-ordinating those party groups; there’s Women’s Place UK (founded by TU women) and Fairplay for Women (sportswomen), For Women Scotland, Merched Cymru, groups for uni staff, for parents, and dozens of others, local groups linked up via the ReSisters Network, all growing and thriving. Out of nowhere.

(If you’re not a woman and you agree that sex-based legal rights matter, not to worry – you can join the LGB Alliance or follow Sex Matters ).

The women’s movement didn’t come from nowhere

If a movement is popular, it will grow. All the women’s rights groups started as small circles of women that quickly and easily grew into hundreds, so that those combined groups are now a huge national force.

Now we see that women’s force breaking through – as we knew it would, because it speaks for a large proportion of the women in this country, and as a result we are seeing increasing numbers of programs, speeches and articles in mainstream arenas criticising the organisations, including mainstream political parties, that have been trying to silence women. Today, something this country has been sadly lacking for decades, the BBC made room for an article about what many lesbians think.

“They came out of nowhere!”

And over on Twitter as the misogynists throw up their hands, wailing that the journalist who wrote the article must have been nobbled. One of their number is offering a private ear to the journalists he assumes have been secretly coerced into talking about lesbians. No guys, it’s just women, standing up for their legal rights, and demanding better safeguarding for their children. Perhaps the reason you didn’t see us coming is that you don’t like seeing women’s views, so you all signed up for ‘terfblocker’ or some such thing, as so many Twit-people do.

Can you imagine being so naïve as to allow someone you don’t even know to ‘protect’ you by blocking, on your behalf, all the social media accounts of your political opponents, and then forgetting they exist?

One of them set up a poll, to prove no-one really believed that article…

Not going too well so far, is it?

If you are laughing now, good for you but, when you’ve finished laughing, do some serious research about how media, including social media and search engines, actually work because in some ways, we’re all being shielded by ‘blockers’ of one kind or another. That’s most likely why the Labour Party didn’t see the Corbyn movement coming, too.

I sometimes think being a politician or being a journalist is the most efficient ‘blocker’ ever. Never mind. We’re all out here in the real world, getting on with politics and stuff while the mainstream political officers and the rest go up their own er… … and I really don’t think many of us work for MI5.

( By the way, if you want to find out more about women’s movement, there is a bookshop called News From Nowhere that probably has some books that’ll help )

Categories
activism Labour Politics prejudice Uncategorized women

Pledges for Gender-Non-Conformists

That is, pretty much anyone except Barbie and GI Joe.