Australian national newspaper condemned for new ‘anti-trans’ section
An Australian national newspaper is being condemned for its “appalling” coverage of transgender issues in a new section on its website dedicated to gender.
Headlines in the section include “They’re castrating children”, “Transgender project ‘out of balance’”, “Sex not a matter of belief”, and “Corrupting kids’ thinking”.
Critics say the articles “demonise and spread misinformation about trans and gender-variant youth,” promoting fringe anti-trans extremists while campaigning against medical experts.
On Monday (August 12), Equality Australia said: “The Australian newspaper’s obsession with humiliating trans people is disgraceful. The rights and existence of trans people is not up for debate.”
— EqualityAustralia ? (@EqualityAu) August 12, 2019
Gender author Jo Hirst pointed out that the paper’s selective coverage of transgender issues omitted many crucial facts, including evidence and research from The Australian Guidelines for Transgender Children.
Writer Benjamin Law pledged to donate to The Gender Centre on behalf of anyone who cancelled their Australian subscription.
In August, if you unsubscribe—or get someone to unsubscribe—from the @australian, I’ll donate $36 (the cost of a monthly sub) to @thegendercentre who do vital work supporting local trans youth.
Provide proof of unsubscription in the replies and I’ll donate on Aug 31. ? (1 of 2)
— Benjamin Law 羅旭能 (@mrbenjaminlaw) August 11, 2019
Adding to our society’s human misery. If you had ANY idea about the effect of hate speech…???…but perhaps you actually do, and you just don’t care. Vile
— Kathryn Skidmore (@kathy_skidmore1) August 10, 2019
Bernard, when the trans teens that I talk to every day come to me and ask why people are angry at them, threaten them with homelessness and abuse them, this is the kind of content that instigates it.
I’m too disappointed and sad about this to be angry. Because I’m tired.
— Joan A. Westenberg (@Jonwestenberg) August 10, 2019
I have one question. Why? Why does the Australian, a once highly regarded newspaper, feel this is a needed thing?
— Libbi Curtis (@LibbiCurtis) August 10, 2019
They just hate the Trans community and it fits into their agenda so they want to encourage people to “take a side”
— ? Sleeping Giants Oz ? (@slpng_giants_oz) August 10, 2019
did you guys somehow run out of racial minorities to vilify
— thomas violence (@thomas_violence) August 10, 2019
The 18 articles currently listed on the ‘gender issues’ page have received so much online criticism that Lane is now refusing to read his mentions on Twitter.
Resistance to trans-inclusive policies
The Australian‘s strong anti-trans coverage reflects a growing backlash towards transgender rights in Australian media and politics.
The far-right One Nation party is working alongside anti-LGBT lobbyists Binary Australia to push against such policies in schools amid claims that children are being “indoctrinated” by “radical gender activists.”
The group are distributing “Anti-PC packs” which tell parents to quiz their children’s schools about which toilets trans students use, whether “biological males” are allowed to do sports with girls, and where trans kids are permitted to sleep on group trips.
The campaign mirrors the tactics of UK-based anti-transgender activists, with lobby group Transgender Trend launching similar school resource packs in 2018.
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