Boris Johnson being ‘urged to declare war on woke’ as criticism over trans rights rollback piles up

Reiss Smith June 16, 2020
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Tories are condemning LGBT kids by axing vital anti-bullying funding

We regret to inform you that Boris Johnson is at it again (Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)

Boris Johnson is reportedly being advised to declare “war on woke” amid his tepid response to the Black Lives Matter movement and reports his government plans to roll back trans rights.

The Financial Times reports that members of the prime minister’s inner circle are urging him to declare a “war on woke”, positioning his government against progressive causes to appeal to a right-wing conservative base.

Back in September it was alleged that Downing Street was considering whether it could weaponise so-called “culture war” issues such as trans rights in order to win votes.

Since then, and certainly since the Conservatives won a decisive majority in the December election, there have been rumblings that the government is preparing to ditch planned advancements to trans rights.

These rumours were all but confirmed Sunday (June 14) when The Sunday Times revealed that reforms to the Gender Recognition Act are to be scrapped, and that plans are afoot to police trans people out of single-sex spaces – a move which has been compared to US anti-trans bathroom bills.

It has been suggested the government will try to “placate” the LGB community with a pledge to ban conversion therapy.

Mermaids says bathroom ‘safeguarding’ tallies with its own intel.

The government has not confirmed or denied these reports, telling PA that the details of its response to the GRA consultation are yet to be finalised.

However the trans charity Mermaids said the Times report tallied with information it has received from sources in Parliament.

It added that the the “concern” being expressed by lobbyists around trans rights and single sex spaces, “without basis or evidence, is nothing more than anti-trans bigotry dressed in outdated quasi-feminist clothing”.

“Trans people have been using toilets, trying on clothes in changing rooms, accessing domestic violence facilities, and generally getting on with their lives for as long as single-sex spaces have existed and there is absolutely no evidence we’re aware of, from the police, local authorities, shops, refuges or anywhere else besides, that predators have used the provisions of the Equality Act 2010 to gain access to women’s spaces,” Mermaids said.

“If even a scrap of such evidence existed, you can be certain the anti-transgender lobby would be promoting it.”

The news has been met with fury by member of the LBGT+ community including pansexual Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran, who demanded equalities minister Liz Truss explain her “retrograde” plot to parliament immediately.

Boris Johnson’s obsession with Churchill statue is a ‘distraction’.

The attack on trans rights comes as the UK grapples with racism in both its past and present.

On Sunday (June 14), Johnson announced a Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities in response to the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests.

He confirmed the news in a column for the Telegraph which led with a defence of the Winston Churchill statue which was recently vandalised in Parliament Square, leading to a weekend of riots from white anti-Black Lives Matter protesters.

Labour MP David Lammy criticised the announcement and its contents, noting: “The Labour party isn’t talking about statues. The Lib Dems aren’t calling for Winston Churchill’s statue to be removed, neither are the Greens. The only person that wants to focus on Winston Churchill’s statue is the Conservative party, and frankly it’s bizarre.

“They want a culture war because they want to distract from the central issue.”

More: black lives matter, Boris Johnson, GRA Reform, Trans

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