BBC removal of Lily Cade from transphobic article "isn't enough"

The BBC cut Cade from the article alleging some cis lesbians have been pressured into sex by Trans women following Cade's calls for violence, but still have not removed the article.

Still of Lily Cade in interview
Image: YouTube

The infamous anti-Trans article by the BBC, published Tuesday, October 26, has now been amended to remove contributions from Lily Cade, self-described “artist of sex”, after she wrote and published five blog posts calling for violence against Trans women.

Cade has been accused by several women of sexual abuse over a number of years and is openly transphobic, and up until now, deemed a credible source by the BBC.

PinkNews reports that Caroline Lowbridge, the author of We’re being pressured into sex by some trans women, was aware of the sexual assault allegations against Cade prior to publication.

Despite this prior knowledge, Lowbridge and the BBC decided to use Cade as a source anyway and also did not see fit to include any mention of these allegations in the anti-Trans piece. These are just two in a series of dubious choices regarding this article, which the BBC are still defending as “an important piece of journalism”.

An addendum has been added to the original digital publication, which reads:

“We have updated this article, published last week, to remove a contribution from one individual in light of comments she has published on blog posts in recent days, which we have been able to verify.

“We acknowledge that an admission of inappropriate behaviour by the same contributor should have been included in the original article.” made a very generous interpretation of Lowbridge’s article, saying, “The piece, published last week, questioned whether a lesbian is ‘transphobic if she does not want to have sex with trans women.'”

As pointed out by an open letter of complaint to the BBC with over 20,000 signatures, the article “dangerously frames” lesbians being pressured into sex “as a widespread issue” when the reality is that this is “a matter of incredibly rare, isolated experiences”.

Trans Activism UK are the voices behind that open letter, and they have responded to this latest move by the BBC, removing Lily Cade from the article, saying “The BBC quietly removing Lily Cade isn’t enough.”

“While the BBC have removed the quotes and statements by Lily Cade from the article, they did not mention Lily Cade by name in the retraction, or the nature of her genocidal transphobic manifesto in the days following the BBC’s article, the nature of the sexual assault allegations against her by cisgender lesbians, how they undermine the core point of the original article (that sexual assaults of cis lesbians are specifically being done by Trans women as an overall societal group), or that Caroline Lowbridge was well aware of those allegations prior to the publishing of the article and chose to bury that information, as alleged by Chelsea Poe.”

The statement goes on to say: “By choosing to remove all mention of Lily Cade, rather than contextualise her as a cisgender lesbian accused of the same crimes levied in the piece against Trans women, the BBC is again choosing to bury the rebuttal argument that anyone from any background can be an abuser, and that to paint this as a Trans woman specific issue is painting a minority group with a single brush stroke… This is not sufficient as a correction, or apology.

“The BBC needs to own up to the fact they have published something deeply dangerous, platformed dangerous individuals, and should not be allowed to quietly sweep this under the rug.”

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