Queensland Erases Women
The Queensland government have radicalised me and I am now a state dissident and it’s not as cool as it sounds.
On the last day of sitting of the Queensland Parliament for 2022 Shannon Fentiman, Queensland Attorney General, Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence has introduced the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Bill 2022 that effectively erases women as a sex category by allowing the almost unguarded alteration of sex on Queensland Birth Certificates. I want to be clear that Fentiman is the Minister for Women in the same spirit that Terry Lewis was the Commissioner for the Queensland Police Service.
Self ID in Queensland will mean that a man can falsify his birth documents to say he was born female. This will give him, not just unfettered access to female only facilities, it will give him the protection of “gender identity”, in those facilities so that any natal woman who tries to remove him, or expresses discomfort, can find herself on the wrong side of the law.
The philosophy behind gender identity as a legal characteristic, and its use to falsify sex markers, is based on the premise that any man who engages in the process to change his identity marker is already female “inside”. Fentiman stated that the bill does not only “recognise the existence and validity of trans and gender diverse people; it affirms them”.
The records of the state and the protective infrastructure of women now legally exist to affirm the Government’s religious idea that men can have a soul that is female, and that the motivations of this soul are more powerful than the sexed body in which it is encased.
The implications of the Bill are massive, complicated, and disproportionately affect women and girls. Among women disproportionately disadvantaged by the loss of sex protections are poor, disabled, incarcerated, abused, raped and indigenous women.
I started to become involved in activist feminist networks about 18 months ago opposing the impending self ID Bill that was rumoured to be pushed by The Greens. I gave a speech at a rally in King George Square in August outlining some of the issues women have with the Bill. The feminist group who organised the rally carried out a series of rallies where women have spoken, these speeches have been published on their YouTube channel, and you can judge if you think they are hateful. Fentiman refused to meet with the group’s organiser, or any women opposed to the legislation. She has taken advice only from government funded gender ideology-soaked groups.
As the final meeting for the year the group booked a meeting at the Royal on the Park in Brisbane city. I was invited to give a short speech along with a number of other women, I chose the topic sex, gender and shame. Again, you can see if you think it is hateful.
As the meeting became public, the hotel and the police were getting nervous at mounting talk of protests against the feminist meeting. An article in a local LGBT magazine, Q News said our meeting was an “Anti trans Bitchfest” (they changed to “hatefest” but the URL reveals the original title).
Under mounting pressure and harassment, Royal on the Park cancelled the feminist group’s booking. Royal on the Park is owned by the Sultan of Brunei who has advocated for the stoning of homosexuals and adulterers to death. People who work for him thought I was dangerous. The meeting moved and the men who opposed the meeting, that was conducted elsewhere, still protested the hotel.
Shannon Fentiman has flat out refused to meet with women with concerns about the Bill. Sall Grover, the Gold Coast business woman with a female only app, was one of the few lucky enough to get a reply to an email to the Attorney General, but only after her email had been blocked by the Office of the Attorney General and unblocked after a complaint by Grover to another department.
In the reply, Fentiman said there was no evidence that “trans women are more likely than non-trans women (sic) to sexually assault other women women-only spaces”. By miscategorising “trans women” as a type of woman rather than a type of man, Fentiman removes the assumption of male pattern criminal behaviour from all males that express a trans identity. This erroneous assumption effectively makes men with a protected “gender identity” a priest class among men, where women are legally compelled to assume this self-declared cohort have a female pattern of criminality. What could possibly go wrong?
The argument that women are not raped enough by trans identified males in single sex facilities to justify our own legal category is not Fentiman’s brainstorm, she is not that stupid. This argument is a standard part of an international template of trans rights that places the onus on female citizens to prove that there are no special men that are exempt from male pattern violence. It’s a tactic that seems to be running out of steam internationally.
A UN special rapporteur on violence against women and girls recently admitted that Self ID legislation has safeguarding risks. Reem Alsalem said the proposed self ID laws for Scotland “would potentially open the door for violent males who identify as men to abuse the process of acquiring a gender certificate and the rights that are associated with it". Queensland Governments have never been afraid to be late to a corrupt rort.
Having been run out of town by the Sultan of Brunei, screamed at in the street, and vilified in the press, I was not as prepared for the next turn of events as I should have been.
On the last day of Parliament when the legislation was to sneak through, a local ABC radio host Steve Austin invited Sall Grover on his afternoon drive show to give the gender critical side of the argument. It was very exciting for us to get a small voice heard and I was preparing to record the programme when I received a message to say that ABC management had cancelled the Grover section of the segment.
When the segment came on, a clearly agitated Austin, played only one side of the argument with audio from Fentiman’s speech to Parliament, followed by him reading what seemed to be a press release from the government in a voice of unwilling compliance. Having listened to Austin on ABC local radio for at least 20 years, it was a moment of deep sadness and pure clarity for me.
In the next little while it was revealed there was some strange activity on Austin’s twitter account, and he was being investigated by the ABC for transphobia. There was an allegation that he “liked” women’s rights activist’s tweets and, seemingly contradictorily, that he had “liked” transgender porn on Twitter. Trans activists also sent Sall Grover what looked like screenshots of her “liking” the same transgender porn sites. Sall had a Photoshop expert examine the pictures, and the expert confirmed that the pictures were a shoddy attempt at digital subterfuge, containing all the hallmarks of poor-quality manipulation.
The Courier Mail, who have taken no perceivable interests in women’s issues in Queensland in relation to the erasure of the sex category, and clearly keen to scrape the bottom of every barrel, decided to do a piece on the Austin allegedly being a transphobe and a trans porn liker.
Austin posted that there had been irregular activity on his account shortly before de-activating it. Many women’s rights activists who suggested that maybe we could give Austin the benefit of the doubt, while the investigation played out, got trolled with a new level of state emboldened threats.
Along with the usual litany of cartoon avatars sending us porn and abuse, some of the Australian blue tickers, most of them in some way connected to the national broadcaster, called us nasty names and used predictable tropes, some threatening to “dox” us.
In Australia the hastily organised resistance movement against gender identity, includes a lot of women who have government jobs and perform their activism under an alias. One trans activists started trolling us with information he had gained about our legal names and workplaces. Not quite doxing us, but showing us he could. He called me “Christine” (my first name) to indicate he knew my full legal name and could easily from that access my address and my family contacts.
Soon enough the death threat memes come out with “No Terfs” written above a crow with a trans flag coloured knife in its beak. Another had a warrior with a sword over a dragon’s corpse with the trident in it’s neck, with the words “kill transphobia”.
It is no accident that this Bill erases the rights of women to assemble on the basis of sex, as has happened in other states, it is no accident that serial sex offenders will end up in women’s prisons with a disproportionate number of indigenous women, as has happened in other states, it is no accident that women who oppose the bill are harassed, assaulted, abused and cancelled.
The police in Queensland will now be repurposed to attack women who resist, and the next step from Fentiman, will be the hate crime legislation that will send women like me to prison. There is no Senate in Queensland and Labor hold an absolute majority. The unpopularity of Fentiman’s Bill was clear in the only post she has dared to keep the comments on for any period of time. People don’t like this legislation and it’s not because they are transphobic.
I am prepared to go to prison. I will not call a man a woman, I will not call a mother a father and I will resist the presence of male people in female only facilities.
We must hold our governments to account on their claim that a self-identified cohort of men are exempt from male pattern violence. We need to ask how we are to identify these special males. If it is just a self-declaration, where is the evidential basis of this claim that is being used to remove a woman’s right to enact sexual boundaries around our spaces and our political assembly? What possible words can a declaration contain that will abate male pattern violence? And why don’t we give it to all men, because according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare they commit 97% of all recorded sexual assaults?
You can read the legislation here, and before midday on the 11th of January 2023 you can make a submission to the Inquiry into the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Bill 2022. They will probably ignore you, but when the human rights violations of this legislation unfold, you might want to have it on record that you objected.
Hi Edie. Thanks for your information. Just a question. When you say the legislation passed but they are taking submissions until 11/1/23, I’m a bit confused about the status currently. This is my ignorance probably about process.
It's so disheartening the way the governments are sneaking legislation through and ignoring women and girls rights.