Leaving the Greens

The Green Party is losing women:

Dozens of activists have quit the Green Party in protest at the election of a transgender campaigner as head of its women’s group.

That is, at the election of a trans woman as head of its women’s group. Quite a few women think that positions of that kind should be for women rather than trans women. We think that because women are still far from being equally represented in top jobs, let alone over-represented, so to make a man who identifies as a woman (which is not the same as just plain being one) the head of a party’s women’s group is insulting to women.

The exodus, involving at least 40 women, follows the appointment in December of Kathryn Bristow, who was born a man but now identifies as a transwoman.

If you’re born male you’re a man, however you identify. Identifying as something doesn’t change physical reality.

[H]er critics claim Ms Bristow’s new role means women are losing representation within the party.

Because it does. Obviously.

Some even fear that its focus on trans issues could overshadow its traditional campaigning against environmental catastrophe.

“Even”? It’s not a huge leap.

A source suggested Ms Bristow’s appointment has added to internal strife that erupted five years ago when the party referred to women as ‘non-males’, adding: ‘Many women in the Green Party have had enough of being told what to think. 

‘We’ve fought hard for over a century to have a seat at the political table. Trans people face their own challenges and need spokespeople, but so do women.’

In emails from departing supporters seen by The Mail on Sunday, furious female activists among the 52,000-strong membership criticise the party’s stance on women’s rights.

The party’s grassroots have been further outraged by an email sent to LGBTQ+ members urging them not to include motions for discussion on items such as ‘women’s sex-based rights’ which were labelled as ‘non-inclusive’. 

Yes, and discussion on black people’s rights is non-inclusive, discussion on lesbian and gay rights is non-inclusive, discussion on workers’ rights is non-inclusive, discussion on immigrants’ rights is non-inclusive. Any kind of specificity is non-inclusive. The fact remains that there are particular sets of people who are deprived of rights because they are in one (or more) of those sets, not because of generic human-ness. Workers don’t have to be inclusive of bosses and women don’t have to be inclusive of men.

Ms Bristow rejects the claims. She tweeted: ‘My rights as a trans person don’t conflict with anyone else’s, as that’s not how human rights work. Fighting for trans liberation is part of everyone’s liberation, because we all must be free for any of us to be.’

Of course that’s how human rights work. If it were otherwise we wouldn’t need human rights at all. If nobody ever exploited or dominated or oppressed anyone else, human rights wouldn’t even be a concept. We need the concept because the more powerful do all that to the less powerful. All our human rights conflict with people’s rights to exploit and harm us. That is how human rights work.

Last night, a Green Party spokesman said: ‘We are unequivocal in our support for trans rights.

‘We recognise that transwomen are women, transmen are men and non-binary identities exist and are valid.’

They “recognise” a falsehood, and their doing so conflicts with women’s rights.

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