A new campaign group has taken out a full page advert in The Herald newspaper today calling on MSP’s Joan McAlpine and Jenny Marra to resign for what they call “emotional abusive gaslighting” against the trans community.
The advert, which appeared in the Friday edition of the paper and is written in Scots dialect, says the MSPs are “using their power to roll back trans rights” and urges readers to sign a petition calling on them to stand down.
It comes from the group Anent Transphobia (Against Transphobia), run by Iain Nicol, who told us:
“I’m a feminist and LGBT ally. Heartbreakingly, I lost a trans friend at the beginning of the year. I’ve been concerned for a number of months that Joan McAlpine is spreading misinformation and fear, mis-using her position as Convener of the Scottish Parliament committee overseeing the next census.”
“I was particularly galled when I heard that these two MSPs had set up an anti-trans event on Trans Day of Remembrance. I felt compelled to speak out against the trans community being marginalised and maligned like this.”
The event referred to was a ‘Declaration on Women’s Sex-Based Rights’ at the Scottish Parliament, which both MSPs reportedly co-sponsored. Prolific anti-trans speakers were invited to attend, including Dr Sheila Jeffreys, who has said “transgenderism” is a “masochistic sexual obsession” harmful to women, and Dr Heather Brunskell-Evans, co-editor of ‘Inveting Transgender Children and Young People’.
There was significant upset that the meeting was to take place on Trans Day of Remembrance (TDoR), a day marked internationally to recognise and remember the hundreds of trans people killed for being who they are.
Swift and widespread criticism of the event followed, with Labour’s LGBT wing accusing their MSP Jenny Marra of spreading “driving prejudice”. A joint letter from 5 Scottish LGBT organisations was also sent to all MSPs saying there is no “incompatibility” between trans rights and women’s rights.
The Declaration event did not take place on TDoR, although it’s not clear if it will be resurrected for another date.