A demonstration against Graham Linehan’s planned appearance on tonight’s episode of Prime Time is due to take place outside RTÉ’s studio in Donnybrook at 18:30 PM this evening. The protest is being organised by This Is Me, Ireland’s Transgender Healthcare Campaign.
The Father Ted writer has been scheduled to appear on an episode of Prime Time in which ten panellists will examine the “exponential growth in the number of young people seeking to change their gender”, as well as the “implications of the proposed new law allowing them to do so without their parents’ consent”.
Since a trailer for the programme released last week announced the inclusion of Linehan, many members of the Irish public have objected to RTE’s decision. Thousands of people have signed a petition calling for the public broadcaster to cancel Linehan’s appearance on the show given the writer’s history of comments regarding the transgender community.
Last year, Linehan urged people to oppose the National Lottery’s funding of Mermaids, a UK based charity that supports trans children and teenagers, claiming the organisation pushes an “extreme ideological agenda”.
Additionally, Linehan has likened trans activism to ‘nazism’ and was given a police warning over transphobic harassment on Twitter.
The event’s Facebook page, which was launched last night, reads:
“In response to RTE – Prime Time edition due to air tomorrow Tuesday, Jan 22nd in relation to transgender identities and subjects surrounding and their decision to feature a known transphobic individual (Graham Linehan).
“RTE’s most recent statement with regards to this matter claims that trans minors may soon have the potential to legally change their legal gender status via the Gender Recognition Act. However, the proposal of the Gender Recognition Act review clearly states that the obstination of a Gender Recognition Certificate for minors will be permitted on the basis of parental consent only.”
The description continues:
“We are now worried about the misinformation that will be broadcast and the colossal damage that this WILL cause to the transgender community of Ireland.”
The description concludes:
“Trans lives are not up for ‘debate’. You either accept our existence or you do not!”
If you are affected by the transphobic or homophobic discourse in the media, GaySwitchboard (01 872 1055) and LGBT Ireland (1890 929 539) offer confidential support each night. You can also find a support group near you on TENI.ie
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