Trans activists have condemned the BBC for publishing an article of testimonies by lesbian women who said they were pressured to date transwomen — i.e., biological males who identify as females — including those who still had intact male genitalia.
The long-form piece written by BBC journalist Caroline Lowbridge and published on Tuesday titled ‘We’re being pressured into sex by some trans women’ detailed the anecdotal evidence of some lesbians being pressured to date and even have sex with biological males who identify as women, also quoting another survey that claimed dozens of lesbians had been coerced to have sexual relations with transwomen.
The article quoted lesbians as saying they had been accused of being transphobic, perverts, far-right extremists, and “inciting violence towards the trans community” for not wanting to date or have sex with transwomen, some of whom still had intact male genitalia.
Some said they were coerced into having sex with trans women for fear of being labelled transphobic or excluded from the LGBT community. It also quoted a statement by the United Kingdom’s and Europe’s largest LGBT charity, Stonewall, which pivoted towards advocating for “trans equality” in 2015, as implying that anyone not wanting to date trans people was like not wanting to date fat people or ethnic minorities, and was a form of prejudice.
Running ugly stories – and suggesting they are representative of how a minority behaves – is the very essence of bigoted hate speech. But that is just how the institutionally transphobic BBC is these days. https://t.co/YZZRIUBhst
— Jo Maugham (@JolyonMaugham) October 26, 2021
The news outlet, often accused of left-liberal bias, highlighting these lesbians’ lived experiences, however, faced a backlash from Trans Activism UK, who accused the BBC of giving a platform to transphobia and called the article “incredibly dangerous”.
The open letter, signed by more than 16,000 people, complained: “The article itself routinely implies that transgender women are not women, uncritically quoting people who call transgender women men without at any point clarifying that this is ignoring their legal status as women in the UK.”
Trans Activism UK also alleged that it used accounts from “known transphobic hate groups” and alleged that the gay, lesbian, and transgender charity LGB Alliance — which broke from the wider LGBT movement and Stonewall over its focus on transgenderism and seeks to further LGB rights — was an “anti-trans hate group” which is “actively biphobic, homophobic and discriminatory towards the LGBTQ+ community as a whole”.
The group then accused the BBC of “continually platforming anti-trans hate groups, and anti-trans perspectives, without covering the perspectives of the transgender community themselves” and that the broadcaster was breaking with its pledge to be impartial.
BBC Diversity Boss Reveals Fourfold Overrepresentation of LGBT Staff — But Insists More Must Be Hired https://t.co/K8T3NCYDIT
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) July 2, 2018
Trans Activism UK then demanded the BBC “rectif[y] this act with a sincere apology, amendment of the article to clarify the falsehoods and damage within, and commits to realigning with their original mission statement” of impartiality.
Several Twitter Blue Ticks, including the anti-Brexit lawyer Jolyon Maugham, went as far as branding the liberal broadcaster — which already over-represents transgender and LGB employees compared to Britain’s general population — as “institutionally transphobic”.
A BBC spokesman responded to the accusations, saying, according to The Times: “The article looks at a complex subject from different perspectives and acknowledges it is difficult to assess the extent of the issue. It includes testimony from a range of different sources and provides appropriate context. It went through our rigorous editorial processes.
“It is important that journalism looks at issues even where there are strongly held positions. The BBC is here to ensure debate and to make sure a wide range of voices are heard.”
On Thursday, #IStandWithLesbians began trending on Twitter, with the LGB Alliance — the group branded a “transphobic hate group” by Trans Activism UK — describing the criticism of the article as “both revealing and depressing”.
“What we find baffling is that none of the critics of the BBC article have bothered to deal with the examples Lowbridge cited of prominent activists effectively erasing homosexuality and bisexuality (as defined in our laws),” the LGB Alliance said.
The BBC has come under fire for a program aimed at prepubescent children which claimed that there are "over 100" gender identities. https://t.co/Nh1d56kSva
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) January 25, 2021
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