Flat White

Why I stand shoulder to shoulder with Deves

21 April 2022

4:00 AM

21 April 2022

4:00 AM

The death threats that Katherine Deves is now receiving are a direct result of the corrupted journalism that is performed in this country by political hacks that are a blight on the organisations they work for.

The difference between sex and gender is central to the argument gender critical feminists are trying to place before the Australian people while journalists haul over Deves’ tweet history with vicious glee. Our arguments centre on the fact that sex is a stable, scientific, and material category, while gender is in the realm of culture, feeling, and politics. Sex has always been the vessel in which women’s rights were contained and the changing of that vessel to gender is proving to have devastating consequences on women and girls.

After years of warning about the dangers of prioritising gender over sex in law, it would be nice to actually place gender-critical arguments before the Australian people. But that is the last thing the Australian media want.

Samantha Maiden, political editor of News.com.au, has taken quite the sustained and virtuous stand against Deves. Maiden has accused Katherine Deves of ‘linking trans kids to autism’. For a start, it is unlikely that Deves would even believe in the existence of a ‘trans kid’. Most people on the gender-critical side of the gender debate would recognise that there are gender diverse and gender dysphoric children, but ‘trans’ is not a word they would usually apply to children.

For many trans adults, like Buck Angel, trans cannot be separated from the medicalisation of gender dysphoria and that medical treatment is a decision many of us believe, only adults should make.

Apart from the weaponising of gender diverse children for political ends, Maiden is quite wrong in problemetising the link between gender diverse children and autism because this link is well established. Dr David Bell, one of the whistleblowers from the UK Tavistock children’s gender service in the UK, has long been pointing out that a large portion of the children in the massive increase in referrals to gender clinics are on the autism spectrum.


Dr Bell was also one of the first people to point out that gender identity ideology contained a kind of homophobic erasure of gender non-conformity. Dennis Kavanagh from the Gay Men’s Network in the UK has recently been cancelled from twitter for suggesting the medicalising of feminine boys is a more difficult kind of homophobia to fight than that prevalent during the AIDS crisis.

Dr Bell’s concerns have been proven correct by the recent Cass review, an independent review of gender identity services for children and young people. The Cass review found that the Tavistock gender clinic was ‘not safe for children’. It seems just as Australia is singing the praises of medicating gender variance in children, the rest of the world is realising allowing activist to influence medicine was a terrible mistake.

The replacement of sex with gender in law and policy does not mean that the boundaries of men and women are less rigid, it means that those boundaries are defined by the executive arm of government run by the ruling culture. This diverting of the democratic process via civil liberty legislation and a captured media is part of a power shift to an expanding executive of unprecedented control. The power of this movement all rests on the ‘harm principle’ in human rights legislation, as it is the only substantial principle that can rightfully limit political speech. Unfortunately, the ‘trans kid’ is a vital cog in the power structure that elites are loathe to release.

We are now being trolled by media who are insisting that a few males in women’s sport is no big deal, that we need ‘nuance’ to protect the mental health of feminine males and children. In reality, the media hacks don’t give a toss about mental health and they certainly don’t care about children. The rise in gender identity ideology has meant that children with chronic and persistent gender dysphoria are facing longer waiting lists and poorer quality care.

The mental health of young women is of course entirely disregarded. We didn’t hear a peep in the mainstream media of the brave mother of a UPenn swimmer who said there were tensions behind the scenes when Lia Thomas was competing in the NCAA swimming championship. The woman, who spoke to Women’s Declaration International, was in tears recounting how she had to ask her daughter if she had enough towels to cover her body in the change room.

When the young swimmer told her mother that she just had no choice but to accept she had to undress in front of Thomas, the mother said; ‘I still can’t believe that I had to tell my adult-aged daughter, “You always have a choice about whether you undress in front of a man.”’ What I have in common with the UPenn mother and Deves, is that I absolutely refuse to teach my daughters to over-ride her sexual boundaries with kindness.

Naively, the Pen University mother contacted the premier civil rights organisation in Biden’s America to see if her daughter could find protection in title IX. Title IX is the principal piece of legislation that protects American women and girls from discrimination. The ACLU told the UPenn mother that they will ‘never defend cis women against women’; the word ‘women’ now being exclusively reserved for men.

Capital-backed ‘teal candidate’ Alegra Spender said Katherine’s views that gender identity movement is authoritarian are ‘disgusting’. But the erasure of sex in law is no joke for women, and I challenge even the heads of the Jewish communities in Australia to listen to the testimony of the mother of the Penn Uni swimmer and say there are no comparisons with fascism. When we say ‘never again’ we don’t just mean mass murder, we mean the silencing of resistance to fascism and authoritarianism which always leads to violence in the face of dissent.

One day I will be gone, and I want my daughters to know that I stood up in the face of this institutionally approved sexual abuse. This is why I stand shoulder to shoulder with Katherine Deves. People say we are on the wrong side of history, they may be correct, but it will depend on who writes this mystical future history. If the people who are dissolving sexual boundaries write our history, I despair for our grandchildren.

Edie Wyatt has a BA Hons from the Institute of Cultural Policy Studies and writes on culture, politics and feminism. She tweets at @MsEdieWyatt and blogs at ediewyatt.com

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