Rishi Sunak still repeating anti-trans ‘a woman is a woman’ statement
Prime minister Rishi Sunak has repeated a widely criticised transphobic statement he made earlier this year despite hefty backlash to his comments.
The conservative leader took to Facebook to target trans people yet again in a Monday (4 December) post, writing, entirely unprompted and without context or reason: “A man is a man and a woman is a woman – that’s just common sense.”
He first made the reviled statement during his speech at the Conservative Party Conference in October after claiming that the public was being “bullied” into supporting trans people.
In the very same speech where he denied that trans people exist, Sunak then claimed the Tories had allowed “love” to “cascade down the generations.”
The speech was viewed by human rights groups and activists as yet another example of the UK government’s disregard of the LGBTQ+ community.
Belgium’s deputy prime minister, Petra De Sutter, who is trans, condemned the speech as “hurtful and disappointing.“
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“These words are fueling transphobia and endangering the lives of many people around the world,” she said at the time. “Trans women are women. And in no way a threat to others. Don’t join the real bullies.”
In response to the growing backlash to his speech and the decline in polling proving his unpopularity, Sunak also doubled down on the comments during a European Political Community meeting.
When asked by a reporter whether he regretted the speech, he said: “No, I think a man is a man and a woman is a woman, I think people watching this program will think that that’s common sense and that’s just a fact of biology.
“Of course, this is always going to be a passionate, tolerant country. That’s how we always are but we can’t ignore fundamental facts of biology and saying those things shouldn’t be controversial.”
Rishi Sunak’s history of transphobic comments
While his speech was particularly reviled, Sunak’s erasure of trans people reaches back beyond his time as PM.
In June, the UK prime minister was filmed mocking trans people in a clip shared with PinkNews, mocking Lib Dem leader Ed Davey for supporting trans people.
Additionally, both he and the shortest-serving prime minister, Liz Truss, denied that trans women are women during the August 2022 leadership hustings.
Sunak’s disdain for trans people has run parallel to anti-trans rhetoric spreading across the county. The Home Office admitted less than 24 hours following his CPC speech that politicians are in part responsible for the rise in anti-LGBTQ+ hate crimes.
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