Labour has chosen trans extremists over JK Rowling

Protesters draped in Rainbow Pride and Transgender flags in London
Protesters draped in Rainbow Pride and Transgender flags in London

There was a brief moment recently in which it seemed the Labour Party might have seen a little sense on gender ideology. With Shadow Health Secretary, Wes Streeting, conceding he had gone too far in the past by repeating Stonewall’s “trans women are women” mantra, and Sir Keir Starmer admitting (while stopping short of an apology) that Rosie Duffield MP was correct in saying only women have a cervix, a correction appeared to be underway.

But, as is becoming tradition with Labour, women have yet again been de-prioritised. In the last few days, the party has reinstated a number of trans policies many had hoped had been shelved.

It looks as though Starmer and his henchmen have chosen to bend the knee to trans activists rather than listen to the likes of JK Rowling, who has become a proud spokeswoman for right-minded citizens across the UK.

Yet it is painfully shortsighted for Labour to fail to recognise that capitulation to these bullies will leave them facing further demands, if elected. A Starmer administration could be railroaded into introducing full legal self-identification; allowing schools to teach gender ideology to five-year-olds; threatening therapists with legal sanctions for declining to “affirm” so-called “trans children” and introducing legislation to render “mis-gendering” a hate crime.

Trans activists will stop at nothing. Having smelt blood, they will go on to rip the throat out of women’s rights, while Labour pretends it is only supporting a marginalised minority.

Rowling’s words should be heeded. Not just because she is a former donor, member and staunch supporter of the party – but because she – with her huge platform and status as a national treasure, speaks for millions of women.

I will vote Labour in this general election. But it is troubling that, no sooner has Wes Streeting spoken a bit of common sense and Starmer seemed to understand the damaging nature of his “cervix” remarks, than they double down again.

Rowling has been on a roll this weekend, highlighting several recent disastrous policies, including self-identification (allowing any man to claim to be a woman and be legally sanctioned on the say-so of a single doctor after just one appointment); removing the spousal veto (meaning women married to men who later decide they are women would effectively become lesbians without their consent), and a review of the teaching of gender ideology in schools. Starmer, a man with hidden shallows, has been pitted against Rowling, a feminist role model whose influence (and charm) far outstrips his. Labour seems to think it can, at one and the same time, capitulate to trans extremists and pretend to prioritise the rights of women and girls.

But we should not forget that it was the Conservative minister Maria Miller who ignited this battle by proposing the introduction of self-identification and even said, in 2017, that the only hostility to her proposals came from women “purporting to be feminists”.

The Tories’ track record on resourcing rape crisis centres and domestic violence refuges is woeful. As Rowling has made clear, challenging this gender nonsense – which affects every woman and girl – is key. But it is nonsensical to think that the Conservatives, simply because they are able to define a woman, will respect what she is.

When Rowling added her voice to those speaking out against gender extremism in 2019, she revolutionised the movement. In choosing to listen to a bunch of misogynistic ideologues rather than one of the finest feminist icons of the modern age, Labour is sowing the seeds of its own destruction.