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Mhairi Black called a ‘rug muncher’ by homophobic troll while defending trans people from JK Rowling. But her clapback was perfect

Emma Powys Maurice June 8, 2020
Mhairi Black: ‘Transgender people face appalling levels of prejudice’

Mhairi Black, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty)

The lesbian Scottish National Party MP Mhairi Black had a very simple response to a homophobic troll who called her a “rug muncher” as she defended trans rights.

Black took to social media following an anti-trans tirade from Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who suggested that granting trans rights would lead to the erasure of lesbians.

Mhairi Black’s own lived experience is quite different, however. The MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South revealed that, actually, it is the abuse she receives from people like Rowling that makes her feel “erased as a lesbian”.

“The only time I’ve felt erased as a lesbian is when anti-trans activists have shouted me down and sent me the vilest abuse whenever I express support for my trans siblings,” she tweeted.

“Never once have trans women treated me with the ferocity of the straight people claiming to be saving me.”

At this point one troll felt he needed to wade into the discussion with the extremely eloquent and persuasive counterargument of “Rug muncher”.

Totally unfazed by the abuse, Black shot back in true Scottish form: “That’s the point you dafty.”

The SNP politician has previously touched on the abuse she receives over her appearance, which is often fuelled by transphobia.

“Do I pass as a woman? I’m regularly told I want to be a man, just by the fact I dress differently,” she said in an interview with JOE. “I’m not trans, I’m a woman, but my entire life I’ve felt excluded from female groups and spaces.”

She has spoken of her frustration at seeing “the same tired, homophobic guff just rebranded against transgender people”, revealing that the toxic anti-trans rhetoric in the UK has led to her being challenged when using a women’s bathroom.

“I’ve been challenged going into female toilets before, course I have. Are you kidding?” she previously told The Herald. “I’m the sort of person who can deal with it, but there was one time I didn’t even have to and it was one of the most powerful things I’ve experienced.

“There was a woman beside me who said [to the person questioning me], ‘Who the hell do you think you are, who are you to police this?’

“That is exactly what I needed in that situation. I didn’t have power, but the woman beside me did. In this debate, I’m the person with the power and I’m not leaving trans people behind.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More: feminism, Homophobia, JK Rowling, lesbian, Mhairi Black, SNP, transphobia

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