Over the past six years I have attended numerous meetings concerned with women’s rights and the threat posed to them by transgender ideology.
In the unlikely event that any of those in thrall to said ideology had even started reading this post, I’m confident that a number will have stopped doing so on reading the words ‘transgender ideology’, muttering that “trans people aren’t an ideology” or some such thing. For those sticking around, let me explain: transgender ideology (also called just ‘gender ideology’ or ‘gender identity ideology’) refers to the belief that everyone has a gender identity, which is independent of and takes priority over one’s biological sex in determining whether one is, in fact, a man or a woman. In the case of men who claim to identify as women, it follows that they should be accepted as women by everyone in all circumstances and the same goes for women who claim to be men. Thus, it is not people who call themselves ‘transgender’ who are an ideology. The word ‘ideology’ refers to the belief that people can claim to be what they are not and that such claims should be taken seriously without any consideration of the costs to anyone else.
Of the meetings and events on this subject that I have attended, the majority have attracted noisy protests, where activists have gathered to try to intimidate, shout abuse and drown out the attendees, most of whom were women. At every event, the angry male protesters were joined by women who participated in the bullying and the abuse.
I recently uploaded a video to my YouTube channel disputing the claims of Matt Walsh and other conservative men that feminism is responsible for transgenderism. His reasoning seems to be that, because feminists argue that expectations of how women should think, behave and present themselves are largely socially constructed (and referred to as ‘gender’), some men are inevitably going to demand to be accepted as women and vice versa and it serves us right for being so bolshy as to reject limiting, regressive stereotypes of femininity in the first place.
I won’t repeat the points I made in my video, save for one:
Leaving aside the differences between various schools of feminist thought, the fundamental purpose of anyone’s feminism is, surely, to challenge, to combat and try to overcome whatever stands in the way of improving women’s lives and well-being, wherever we are disadvantaged. Any ideology that hurts women and girls isn’t feminism. This isn’t to deny that many women who call themselves feminists support and promote transgender ideology. I contend that those women shouldn’t call themselves feminists and that supporting gender self-ID isn’t feminism.
Contrary to what some suggest, this is not the No True Scotsman fallacy, which occurs when you generalise about a group of people and exclude from the group, anyone who has a quality or trait or does something that doesn’t fit your generalisation. If I say, “no true Scotsman, even if he were born and raised in Scotland of Scottish parents, would put sugar on his porridge,” you can see why it’s ridiculous – why it’s fallacious.
But if I say, “no true vegan would drink cows’ milk”, that is not ridiculous and it’s not fallacious because the definition of a vegan is someone who chooses not to consume or make use of any animal products.
If you accept that the basic definition of a feminist is someone who supports women’s social, economic and political rights then, surely, no true feminist would support the right of men to declare themselves women, given the negative impact this can have on women (not to mention children and gay men).
So why do they support so-called ‘trans rights’?
From the fauxminists, as I call them, I’ve seen only one answer, which is that those men who claim to be women are indeed women – a kind of woman – because that is their ‘gender identity’ and that is what matters. That they are male and that the majority are heterosexual doesn’t matter; that the majority do not have genital surgery doesn’t matter; that most have a natural physical advantage over most women in sporting competitions doesn’t matter; that most are easily discernible as male and, as such, likely to cause discomfort and alarm if they access female-only spaces, doesn’t matter; that a great many manifest male-typical behaviours doesn’t matter.
Their female supporters prioritise the feelings of a small but ever-growing number of men over those of most women and no true feminist would do that unless they are using a redefinition of the word ‘feminism’, much as they use a redefinition of the word ‘woman’ to the circular, incoherent and meaningless “anyone who identifies as one”, which isn’t a definition at all.
However, I am less interested in discussing the definition of feminism than I am in trying to understand why any woman – whether she calls herself a feminist or not – supports gender ideology.
I have a few ideas – some of them informed by women who once supported what they called “trans rights” and no longer do – and I intend to talk about them in a video I am planning to make very soon. My opinions are unlikely to find favour with those women who still consider themselves to be ‘trans allies’ but I have arrived at them in the absence of any input from such women themselves and am open to changing them in light of their explanations. I have repeatedly posted an invitation on X (formerly Twitter) for women who support gender self-ID to give their reasons. Not a single one has availed herself of the opportunity to enlighten me, so this post is my last-ditch attempt at drawing an explanation from any of them for the following:
Why are you OK with male-bodied people being permitted to crush the dreams of young sportswomen by competing in women’s sports and winning the titles and honours that female athletes have trained hard for?
Why are you OK with men being appointed or elected to positions originally intended to increase female representation and address the specific issues affecting women?
Why are you OK with men calling themselves ‘lesbians’ and hijacking lesbian social groups and dating apps?
Why are you OK with boys and men accessing the public toilets and changing rooms designated for females, when doing so makes girls and women feel uncomfortable, embarrassed and unsafe?
Why are you OK with violent men – including rapists – being incarcerated in the female estate?
Why are you OK with physically healthy children being turned into lifelong medical patients and given interventions with potentially very serious effects on their health as well as resulting in sterility?
Why are you OK with young people, who’ve yet to reach full maturity, drastically changing their healthy bodies with irreversible surgeries?
And, finally, do you really believe that those of us who are not OK with any of the above are bigots whom it’s OK to try to threaten, intimidate into silence, cancel, shout over, get banned from social media, fired from our jobs and assault?
I’m hoping for serious, thoughtful responses that will make me reconsider the evidence I have accumulated over the past six years and, if I get any, I will include them in the video I am planning to make.
But I won’t hold my breath.
To receive email notifications of future blogs at Peakers Corner, please subscribe. See top of right-hand column.
Follow me on Twitter @MPMacLachlan
Subscribe to my YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/c/PeakTrans
Many thanks to Helen for these words, which originally appeared as a post on Facebook.
I was horrified last night watching the footage of ‘antifa’ attacking people who had attended an advertised protest outside Wi Spa in Los Angeles after women complained of a man exposing his penis in the women’s area of the facilities.
When antifa and other anti-fascist groups started, they were about defending communities from racist and fascist violence and attacks. It is sometimes necessary and reasonable to use violence to defend yourself or others from physical attack. In the 70’s-90’s fascists were graffitiing and firebombing the homes of black people, firebombing left-wing and anarchist bookshops, physically attacking black people in the street, attacking trade unionists and anti-racists, gay-bashing and so on. The police did nothing to stop those attacks and in fact regularly colluded with the racists/fascists. In those circumstances there was little alternative but for people to join together to fight back in order to stop fascists attacking people, so groups like antifa were created. At the end of the 90’s a fascist detonated bombs in Brixton, Brick Lane and a gay pub in Soho, maiming and killing people. By what measure are some on the left falsely comparing women fighting against sexism with racists and fascists? There are no feminist dictators, there is no campaign of violence and intimidation by women.
I don’t know when Labour fell headlong down the gender ideology rabbit hole – to my shame, I was all but oblivious to this until about two and a half years ago. What became clear though, was that inexplicably, Labour had fallen in love with a neo-liberal, postmodern, anti-materialist ideology that was antithetical to Socialism. I thought Corbyn would see through this nonsense. Not a chance. Introducing himself with ‘pronouns’ prior to the last general election was … well … surprising. As well as stating the bleeding obvious – we all know you’re a bloke mate!
The manifesto offered a glimmer of hope – although how on earth they thought they could deliver their promise to reform the ‘Gender’ Recognition Act AND defend women’s rights under the Equality Act 2010 was baffling. Nevertheless, we breathed a sigh of relief. There was some recognition that sex – and women as a sex class – actually existed. Like good Socialists should, they acknowledged material reality.
A leadership contest predictably followed the election in December 2019. Most of the leadership and deputy candidates enthusiastically endorsed a ‘trans’ pledge solemnly declaring witches should be burned at the stake. Starmer did not sign – and so again there was a glimmer of hope. Continue reading
“We are not deliberately creating ‘hateful’ images, but making legitimate points about important issues in the news, to show different angles, and initiate discussion.”
Earlier this year I wrote a blog post about how the Morning Star newspaper had caved in to pressure from its trade union paymasters and apologised for a cartoon entitled ‘Endgame’, which had appeared in its print edition. I didn’t realise at the time that the paper had, as a result of the debacle, dispensed altogether with the services of the cartoon’s creator, Stella Perrett, who’d been contributing cartoons for free since 2015. Here’s a reminder of the cartoon, which is no less pertinent now than it has ever been.
A year ago today, on hearing of Magdalen’s death, I wrote and posted a personal tribute to her. Soon afterwards, I was honoured to be invited to her funeral by her mother, Deborah Lavin who, sadly, was to survive Magdalen – the youngest of her three children – by just nine months.
At Magdalen’s funeral, I met some of those close to her and heard so much more about her than she’d ever revealed by either her online persona or her presence at the occasional meeting and in the pub afterwards. On this first anniversary of her death, I’d like to share some more reflections of her.
The dictionary provides us with a concise definition of anti-Semitism as ‘hostility and prejudice against Jews’. The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance – an inter-governmental organisation set up some years ago to focus on issues related to the Jewish holocaust – provides a comprehensive list of examples. The mention of George Soros’ name and objecting to any of his political and philanthropic activities doesn’t feature in that list of examples.
Catholic journalist and commentator, Caroline Farrow – about whom I have written one post already, on the occasion of her being sued by the notorious transgender litigant, Stephanie Hayden – is the latest to be defamed in this manner.
Her accuser is none other than the repugnant and obsessed James Billingham, about whom I have also blogged previously. In this instance, Billingham uses his sock-puppet, @TheOnlySprout, to tweet a screenshot of a Facebook post by Caroline promoting a CitizenGo petition, which was launched after an article written by Soros himself in the New York Times: Mark Zuckerberg Should Not Be in Control of Facebook.
On a day when people are lamenting the “rescheduling” – reportedly due to lack of ticket sales – of Rachel McKinnon’s eagerly anticipated talk, which was due to take place in London soon, I’d like to continue milking my attempt to improve McKinnon’s Wikipedia page, the result of which can be seen here.
It has brought even more joy to people than I anticipated. I’m also a bit surprised at the lack of knowledge about Wikipedia in some of the responses I got. I’d like to address these for anyone wishing to pull a similar stunt – quite a number of people say they are inspired by my work.
I want to say first of all that when I edited the page I did so in the full knowledge that the edits would be reversed in minutes, if not seconds. People were disappointed when they looked at the page hours later and declared my amendments had “gone already!” No, they are far more efficient than that.
My thanks to the awesome Liverpool ReSisters for permission to reproduce their recent Twitter thread here.
This month marks a year since Liverpool Resisters’ #stickerwoman action which started a curious chain of events which made international news, raised awareness, recruited countless women, and exposed @lpoolcouncil as misogynist charlatans.
In the context of a badly run Government consultation into gender self-id, a policy which would have huge implications for women, women’s voices were shut out by the establishment. Feminists were harassed and abused. The public had no idea what the government was planning.
As part of a national grassroots campaign, a small act of resistance took place. A tiny be-penised sticker, stuck to a statue on Crosby beach, stating a biological truth “Women Don’t Have Penises.” A short, common sense statement designed to get people to start asking questions.
The wokerati and big wigs of Liverpool were up in arms, virtue signalling and out-outraging each other about this “hate crime” whilst remaining strangely silent about – and even supporting – TRA abuse, vandalism and intimidation of women on their own doorstep.
Mayor Anderson embarrassed himself, egged on by a notoriously misogynist “doctor” and was exposed as being completely ignorant of the issues at hand. He took personal offence at being held to account on social media for which he would seek his revenge (on women).
A self-proclaimed “baby of the chamber” declared on behalf of the people of Liverpool that “trans women are women” and that unisex toilets should be introduced. He stopped short of calling for all biology books and dictionaries in the city to be burned.
Every councillor was made aware of the wider implications of self-id as well as the increased risk of sexual violence and voyeurism to women and girls from unisex facilities. In a huge “fuck you” to the women of Liverpool, they voted for it anyway, with no consultation.
The Mayor paraded his arrogance in the council chamber. Misogyny dripped from every pore on his bloated, purple face as he shouted at and abused a lone woman who spoke up for women and children. Cheered on by lackeys who are *paid* to represent the people (not the trans lobby).
There is not one solitary councillor in Liverpool who is willing to stand up for women’s rights, or our ability to have a say in matters that concern us. For the safety and well-being of children. For freedom of speech or debate. For truth.
Every single one of them knows what a woman is. Every single one of them voted through a motion which lies and has implications for all of us. How can they be trusted with any other issue?
So, where are we now?
The public are waking up to the realities of trans activism – the regressive stereotypes, the safety implications, the misogyny and totalitarianism which seeks to silence women by any means necessary.
Far too many men fighting to remove women’s safe spaces have been exposed as sexual predators and paedophiles. Women and girls are losing out on sporting opportunities. Detransitioners are increasingly speaking up.
Women have been proved right with all of our concerns.
And Resisters groups have sprung up across the country.
We are not going away, our movement grows stronger.
WOMEN *STILL* DON’T HAVE PENISES!
Published on this site 29.08.19
To receive email notifications of future blogs at Peakers Corner, please subscribe. See top of right-hand column
This is a repost of a piece I originally published on 07.05.19 and which mysteriously vanished for reasons I can’t work out.
“hypocritical disgusting judgmental bigot”
“narcissistic bigoted harasser”
“toxic individual who peddles bigotry”
“very nasty bully”
“disgusting judgmental bigot”
“sad middle-aged individual hater”
“should be sectioned under mental health act”
“sewer of shite”
These are quotes from some of the tweets read out in Court 37 of the Royal Courts of Justice in London last week, at a hearing to consider an application for an interim injunction against Caroline Farrow by Stephanie Hayden. Given that Hayden was the one seeking the injunction, having turned up at her home to serve the papers in person just a few days earlier, you’d be forgiven for thinking that these tweets were by Caroline about the claimant but actually it’s the other way round. Amanda Jones, counsel for the defence, said there were about 70 tweets that were “immensely abusive of the defendant by the claimant”.
But, according to the claimant – who was representing himself – none of them passes the threshold of harassment under Section 3A of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, which applies to “conduct that goes beyond mere annoyance, oppressive to a criminal standard”. They are just “robust criticism”, which was justified on the grounds that the defendant was a “public figure commentating professionally on serious, social, moral issues”, (a description more befitting an MP or at least some well-known TV pundit, I would have thought.)
Mrs Farrow’s tweets about Hayden, on the other hand, “far exceeded” that same threshold.
The first one he read out – and described as “particularly concerning” – said,
“Their fixation and lies are terrifying. I hope Hayden dies me or does whatever they are threatening so then I can be left alone.”
Hayden, who on reading the tweet out loud stressed the word ‘dies’ and paused after it, acknowledged it could be a typo but claimed to be unable to see how it could be typed in error.
Most revealingly, Hayden omitted to mention that Caroline had later quote-tweeted herself, pointing out that it was a typo. Thankfully, her barrister did so while making the obvious point that “I hope Hayden dies me” doesn’t make sense; “I hope Hayden sues me” does.
The second tweet Hayden read out described Hayden and others as “psychopathic narcs”, who were always “on her case”. This, said Hayden, in a plaintive tone, was, “just a random, defamatory allegation thrown out there”.
I will say at this point that, in spite of her supposedly being a “public figure”, as Hayden said several times, I’d only been aware of Caroline Farrow since the Susie Green debacle and only woke up to the hate campaign against her after seeing one of the most disgusting and vicious tweets I’ve ever seen directed at an individual. It was the work of another trans bully and it occurred to me on seeing it that he’d managed to surpass even his own loathsome self this time.
After seeing that, I did a bit more searching and was staggered at the amount of hate and abuse she gets from more people than I could count. What had she done to justify this level of vitriol? I looked and found nothing. I saw that other people who asked for evidence against her were ignored. That, of course, doesn’t mean Caroline is innocent. It does mean that people are confident enough on Twitter to make nasty allegations without needing to provide proof of them. Therefore all the rest of us have to go on is Caroline’s own account, which makes her sound sane and reasonable compared to her rabid detractors. This is why I stand with her against them.
So I take Hayden’s assertion about the tweet he deems “oppressive to a criminal standard” with a pinch of salt. As Ms Jones pointed out, the language “psychopathic narcs” was the only example Hayden gave of what he called “harassing and defamatory”.
One thing that surprised me about the Judge’s response to what Ms Jones called a “positive avalanche of abuse over a number of months”, was to complain that he didn’t know what these tweets were “rightly or wrongly” a response to i.e. what had provoked them.
It occurred to me then that the judge hadn’t even asked that question of Hayden – ‘What had “rightly or wrongly” provoked Caroline’s tweets about him?’ – and I began to be concerned about his objectivity.
In fairness, he did say something about it being the defence counsel’s task to resist an application about her client’s alleged harassment of the claimant rather than make a case against “her”. He also conceded that it was “conceptually possible” for two people to harass each other. At some point during the proceedings, he asked whether there had been any consideration of the possibility that both claimant and defendant undertake to stop tweeting about each other. There had not, said Ms Jones. The claimant had made no such proposal and Mrs Farrow’s requests that Hayden and others stopped tweeting about her were not only disregarded but Hayden reaffirmed his right to “freedom of expression”, while again promoting the idea that Caroline is a public figure. Of course, it’s so much worse to be “harassed” and “defamed” by a public figure.
How it didn’t begin
According to the claimant’s narrative, the problem with Caroline Farrow started at the beginning of February with this tweet (see right) which she used to suggest Hayden might visit her “with or without Dr Adrian Harrop and whack her over the head”.
That, said Hayden, was the basis on which Mrs Farrow interacted with him for the next three months, accusing him of being “some kind of violent stalker intent on harming her, her husband and kids”. But it was her “obsessive” tweeting from 24-28 April and the suggestions that Hayden might behave in a criminal manner that finally provoked him into seeking an injunction to stop her tweeting about him.
The example Hayden read out was this one, referring to fists and a golf club.
The judge’s immediate observation was that the pronoun ‘he’ is used for Hayden but I’ll get to that later.
Hayden, it transpires, was convicted in 1999 for affray with a golf club. The conviction is now ‘spent’. This means that under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, which aims to rehabilitate offenders by not making their past mistakes affect the rest of their lives, it shouldn’t be taken into account in sentencing, in the event of Hayden being convicted of something else 20 years later. Nor should it be considered a bar to employment in some fields but not others.
As someone who spent much of my working life in charitable organisations working with vulnerable people, I can say that even spent convictions were taken into account in the recruitment of both staff and volunteers. No way would we take on someone with a conviction for violence or dishonesty, however long ago it was. The fact that someone made a “mistake” once, doesn’t mean they wouldn’t make another one or that someone shouldn’t be wary of them. I, for example, will be wary of my assailants and their supporters as long as I know they are alive and so should everyone else.
That said, I agree that someone with a spent conviction shouldn’t be constantly reminded of that conviction, shouldn’t have it mentioned publicly at all if they have done nothing to invite such behaviour. This, as I learned from Caroline’s counsel, is not the case with Hayden.
Ms Jones pointed out that, contrary to what Hayden had claimed, the tweet about storming into her church on 1 February was not the start of the conflict, nor is it the reason why Mrs Farrow fears violence from Hayden. In fact, some of the tweets from Hayden’s “avalanche of abuse” date back to the beginning of December.
Significantly, she pointed out that Stephanie Hayden and Adrian Harrop had, on several occasions, chatted on Twitter about playing golf near people they dislike, including Harry Miller, who’d provided a witness statement. A tweet by Harrop asking if he could “hire a digger” (a reference to Harry’s business) somewhere in Lincolnshire near to where Harry lives and works was followed up with a suggestion that he and Hayden take a golfing holiday there. On being asked if there was a Catholic church nearby, Harrop responded with a picture of Father Farrow’s church saying that was the only church he was interested in visiting. Father Farrow is Caroline Farrow’s husband and the church is about 200 miles away from the area they were talking about playing golf at where, we learned from Ms Jones, there are no golfing facilities anyway.
No doubt Hayden and Harrop thought this banter – which Caroline Farrow understandably interpreted as a deliberate attempt to intimidate and frighten her – was just hilarious. I’m sure they got off on the idea that she was frightened by these two bullies because, judging by their previous behaviour online, that is the kind of people they are. But far from “just having a joke”, as Hayden whined when it was his turn again, what I personally believe is that they were deliberately trying to goad her into a response that Hayden could use to justify legal action against her because – in my considered opinion – that’s what he’s all about.
By the way, we also heard that Adrian Harrop had tweeted that Caroline is a “bigoted Catholic cunt”.
I suppose I should mention another allegation by the claimant, though this one is so preposterous that I’m almost embarrassed for Hayden. Apparently, there was an Instagram account set up to mock Hayden called ‘Troon of the Bailey’. I’d never heard of it before the hearing, never saw it and it no longer exists. Hayden suggested that Caroline was behind the account and also that she was a poster on the Kiwi Farms forum where there is a mammoth thread dedicated to Hayden in their ‘lolcows’ section. There wasn’t a scrap of evidence to connect her with either and I have no note of whether the judge even bothered to comment.
In contrast, a grotesque website called ‘Tombstone Teeth’ or some such thing, which was set up to abuse, harass and taunt Caroline, did publish information that must have come “from the claimant or those to whom he unwisely entrusted information”, said Ms Jones, while making it clear that it was not actually Hayden’s blog. Indeed, Hayden had strongly condemned the site. By remarkable coincidence, it disappeared on the day of the hearing.
The transgender issue
When I first heard the claimant give “the transgender issue” as the fundamental reason for all the conflict, I was surprised because it sounded to me like an admission that Hayden and others were behaving so hatefully towards Caroline simply because she disagrees with transgender ideology, rather than because she had done any number of unspeakable and unspecified things to other people.
Then I remembered that same ideology is underpinned by a belief that anyone who disagrees with any part of it is, by definition, evil, stupid, bigoted, hateful, dangerous and less than human. Therefore to abuse or promote violence against critics is perfectly justifiable. Time and again on social media we see those who assert that “trans women are women, trans men are men” turn away from debates that involve critical thinking and resort to name-calling and ascribing to critics views we do not hold, because it suits their purpose to do so.
Of course, anyone who challenges that core tenet or any other aspect of transgender ideology is a “bigot” in the eyes of people like Hayden and Harrop and it is more than a little ironic that those who are so quick to label others as such are the most intolerant of views they disagree with.
In court, Hayden alleged that Caroline attacked him on the basis of his protected characteristic of gender reassignment.
“I am a transgender woman who is recognised by the law of this land, regardless of the defendant’s beliefs – religious or otherwise – as a woman.”
It is clearly beyond the capability of the likes of Hayden, Harrop and possibly even of Mr Justice Bryan to comprehend how offensive it is to hear him claim to be a woman on the basis of some subjective feeling of his. Hayden knows nothing of what it is to be a woman and wouldn’t look out of place in a team of road-digging navvies. As I listened to this hulking scallywag claim to be a woman, it struck me – and not for the first time during his testimony – that he was the very personification of the term ‘legal fiction’. Standing a few feet away from where the petite Caroline Farrow was sitting, looking stunning in a red dress with her blonde hair hanging loose, the contrast between them seemed cruel and if he’d been a decent sort, I would have pitied him. But by bringing her to court, Hayden invited the comparison.
Hayden said that in the course of the past week, Caroline had persistently “misgendered” him and had referred to him as a “childless, gay man”. This conduct, said Hayden, “has to be examined in the context of who I am”.
This, of course, is typical post-modernist trans-speak, where what one is in reality, is to be disregarded by everyone else in favour of what one wishes one were. One must go along with a falsehood or be labelled a ‘bigot’ and – as Hayden and friends have demonstrated – much else besides.
While conceding that it isn’t a criminal offence or a tort to describe a [trans-identifying] man as a woman and vice versa, if I followed his argument correctly, Hayden suggested that it could be deemed harassment when it was part and parcel of “a course of conduct that could be objectively construed as harassing another”.
He used the analogy of a public square a few times during his testimony. On this occasion it was to point out that if Caroline was shouting in a public square, “Stephanie Hayden, you’re a childless gay man,” she would likely attract the attention of the police.
The judge swiftly intervened to point out the obvious, which is that such behaviour might just be deemed a public order offence and nothing to do with “misgendering”.
Personally, I couldn’t see the point of the analogy. It’s not as if the large, male-bodied Hayden would be likely to fear a physical assault from a small woman like Caroline. That would only make sense the other way round.
I wish that some of the abuse and falsehoods said of me on social media had been shouted in a public square instead because the mere sight of me would give the lie to the suggestion that I am a “giant, terrifying beast” who is strong enough to put a 25-year-old man in a headlock, beat the hell out of them, etc, etc.
Anyway, on behalf of Caroline, her counsel responded that she didn’t accept that using a male pronoun about Hayden is harassment. “It is a legitimate position for anyone to take that a person who is born a man stays a man… Forced speech should never be part of an injunction.”
Ms Jones repeated that you couldn’t take the tweets considered offensive by the claimant as such without considering the context. However, her argument about the lack of full and frank disclosure on Hayden’s part – though it made sense to me – didn’t seem to be taken on board by the judge at all.
In his summing up Mr Justice Bryan nearly sent us all to sleep as he made reference to case after case after case but the most extraordinary thing about his summation was that he kept referring to emails when what this entire case had been about was tweets. Could it actually be that this judge doesn’t understand how Twitter works? That he thought the tweets that Hayden and Caroline had made about each other from behind the block (at least on Caroline’s part – I don’t know about Hayden) were emails sent to each other? This certainly helped to give the impression that he’d already decided on his verdict before the hearing ever took place and all he did on the day was tweak it a bit.
His decision was to award Hayden the interim injunction against Caroline on the basis of the volume of tweets (or maybe he thought they were emails?) that Hayden claims she made within a specific timeframe of a few days in April, while asking for a voluntary undertaking from Hayden which, as I understand it, pretty much mirrors the injunction in all relevant aspects. As Posie Parker amusingly observed later that day, “Fancy taking someone to court to basically get an injunction on yourself.” If all he wanted was for Caroline to stop tweeting about him, he could have offered a deal to stop tweeting about her if she agreed to reciprocate but he wouldn’t do that because he is after something more and perhaps this case will actually go to trial. I certainly hope there is no out-of-court settlement and I’m sure Hayden wouldn’t want one. No, really!
Obviously, I’ve had to miss out a lot of what was said – my shorthand is only so fast, there was legal stuff said that I didn’t fully understand and the hearing went on for over three and a half hours. I had to leave just before the end.
A transcript of the Judge’s summing up is now available here.
One thing I forgot to mention earlier is that I understand that Hayden’s claim is not only for harassment but also for defamation, which is curious, given that the Defamation Act 2013 s.1(1) states: “A statement is not defamatory unless its publication has caused or is likely to cause serious harm to the reputation of the claimant.”
What reputation does Hayden have that could be harmed? This video of what happened after he left the court provides a clue:
And here we have an explanation as to what is going on.
Yes, I can totally see why Hayden is worried about his reputation.
- Judge stops transgender Twitter row BBC 02.05.19
- High Court Judge bans a transgender lawyer and a Catholic mother-of-five from mentioning one another on social media following an ‘out of control’ Twitter row Mail 03.05.19
To receive email notifications of future blogs at Peakers Corner, please subscribe. See top of right-hand column.