Trans lobby sent me death threats, claims professor The Times 06.12.18

The original article is here.

An academic who accused the transgender movement of undermining women’s rights says she has found urine splashed on her office door and has been harassed by late night phone calls and rape threats.

Rosa Freedman, an expert on human rights law at the University of Reading, believes that she is being targeted by trans activists because she has publicly opposed demands to let men who identify as female legally declare themselves women.

She said yesterday that the harassment had escalated to “scary” levels, giving the example of a call at 3.30am from an anonymous number telling her that she “should be raped and killed”.

That came after she found what she believed was urine on her university office door. “I spent time cleaning it up because I could not bear the smell or the shame of what had happened,” she said. Asked whether she believed that trans activists were behind the incident, she said: “Put it this way, despite being involved in pretty topical and political research throughout my career no one has ever pissed on my door before.”

She also said that she had to hide in bushes to avoid a group of activists who she claimed were following her as she made her way to an event organised by A Woman’s Place, a campaign group that has been holding meetings across the country to discuss the impact of government proposals to amend the Gender Recognition Act.

Organisers have said that details of the meetings have to be kept secret until the last minute because activists were trying to shut them down.

Professor Freedman, 35, said: “It was dark and secluded and bloody scary to have a bunch of students — many male — following me. Last week I discovered criminal damage explicitly encouraging me to leave the university because of my views that a woman is defined by law as biological not psychological.

“If this is how a university professor is treated, little wonder that women who work in jobs without protection regarding academic inquiry, eg. factories, shops, schools, restaurants, hospitals, and beyond . . . feel unable to speak up to protect women’s rights.”

The University of Reading said it was investigating the alleged incidents.

Professor Freedman was one of a group of female academics who were accused of “hate crime” by a transgender researcher at Goldsmiths, University of London. Natacha Kennedy invited thousands of members of a closed Facebook group to draw up a list of academics who disagreed with their theories on gender.

Professor Freedman is expected to appear before the Scottish parliament’s culture committee today as it discusses plans to change the census to allow people who identify as neither male nor female to choose a non-binary option.