Irish Twitter is alight today with both #IrishTimes and #TransRightsAreHumanRights trending in the wake of many, including LGBTQ+ community members, accusing the Irish Times of publishing content on letters and opinion pages that are “thinly veiled transphobia”.
A recently published opinion piece had a headline which read, “Bill to ban conversion therapy poses problems for therapists”. The subheading read, “Forcing sexual orientation shifts must be outlawed but gender identity needs focus.”
Only yesterday, the NXF had a letter published in the Irish Times which tackled these views. Signed by many community groups, the letter demanded an end to ‘conversion therapy’ and quoted Minister Roderic O’Gorman who stated “a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression is not up for debate”.
Concerning to see this thinly veiled transphobia in The Irish Times this morning. The article constructs the false narrative that the work of therapists would be restricted by the vital need to protect trans people from the “abhorrent practice” of conversion therapy. pic.twitter.com/x1609nGPah
— Jenny (@jennymaguir) August 9, 2021
Others have also pointed out their shock at some of the views published on the opinions page including one from Jennifer Langan which talked about “the tendency of some trans-identifying men, specifically porn-addled autogynephiles, to belligerently out themselves as violent misogynists.”
A diverse range of community voices are sharing their outrage and concern on Twitter including Panti Bliss who told their social media followers their disgust over content that is “dangerous” to the Trans community.
I've read @IrishTimes all my life. My parents got it every day. Later, for years, I bought it every day. Then for more years, I subscribed online.
Today I unsubscribed cos of the dangerous trash they keep publishing about trans people. The disgusting letter today the final straw
— Dr Panti Bliss-Cabrera (@PantiBliss) August 13, 2021
Other community activists are taking a stand by unsubscribing from the Irish Times and stating their reasons using the #TransRightsAreHumanRights hashtag.
Today, I unsubscribed to @IrishTimes for reasons outlined below. #TransRightsAreHumanRights pic.twitter.com/RPvguiahrV
— Robbie Lawlor (@Robbie_Lawlor) August 13, 2021
Trinity News has also shared they have “officially ended” their nine-year commercial partnership with the Irish Times, continuing they will no longer produce their print edition.
.@Trinity_News has officially ended our nine-year commercial partnership with the Irish Times.
They will no longer produce our print edition and we will no longer feature their advertising.
— Jack Kennedy (@kackjennedy) August 13, 2021
There is a worrying rise in anti-Trans rhetoric at home and abroad. This coupled with the dire lack of Trans healthcare in Ireland is having a hugely negative effect on Trans people’s physical and mental health – any platforming of views deemed as transphobic only adds to this. As one social media user shared, “transphobia cannot be tolerated”.
Just cancelled my subscription to @IrishTimes . We’ve been thinking about it for ages because it’s getting worse and worse and today’s letter sealed the deal. Transphobia cannot be tolerated, and what we saw in today’s paper was so abhorrent it wouldn’t have made the Guardian.
— Listen to How The Yes Was Won (@hat_dogg) August 13, 2021
At the Oireachtas Sub Committee on mental health back in June, Éirénne Carroll, Chief Executive Officer of TENI shared, “Just three weeks ago I spent my afternoon with the Gardaí assessing my flat because of a death threat that was put in against me just for being visibly Trans and being an immigrant.”
There are journalists I respect at @IrishTimes and I have sometimes spoken to them about cases I work on/my field of law generally.
That ends today. Until the IT apologises for printing that hate-filled screed, accepts the harm it's caused, and undertakes to do better, I'm done.
— Wendy Lyon (@wendylyon) August 13, 2021
The Irish Times has not yet not published a response to the comments made on social media.
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