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Are we allowed to talk about women and/or lesbians?

(289 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

LRDtheFeministDragon Wed 24-Aug-16 23:09:50

I'm referring to the deleted thread from Chat today. It was started to discuss issues arising from some of the statements made by Edinburgh University's ex-LGBT rep, which were anti-semitic, misogynistic and lesbophobic (amongst other things.

This rep identifies as trans. Various posters (both trans and not) were either ignorant of their preferred pronouns, or didn't use them consistently. I can believe some people also deliberately misgendered them; I didn't see. The debate, so far as I understand it, ended with the claim that we should not use 'they' in statements of the form 'This group, they are like this' or 'This group, they do that'.

This may be a valid debate. I don't know. But it seemed to me it was a complete derail of the original debate, and one that replicates the exact type of erasure that LGBT students at Edinburgh were experiencing when they were being made to feel unwelcome.

MNHQ's deletion message included this: We understand folks will want to talk more about pronouns and trans issues in general on another thread perhaps - but we would ask that you do so in way that doesn't rehash or repeat this thread.

HQ, could you please let us know why you think everything has to be dominated by discussions like this? Can't there be some way of restricting them, so they don't take over every attempt to discuss misogyny or lesbianism or bisexuality?

There were posters on that thread sharing very personal experiences, and to delete the thread with the claim that we've discussed pronouns in the wrong way seems insulting.

WaitrosePigeon Wed 24-Aug-16 23:11:46

<thumbs up to LRD>

MatildaOfTuscany Wed 24-Aug-16 23:13:37

Just to be clear for people who didn't see this thread - apparently we are not allowed to complain about a person referring to women with vaginas as cuntscum because failing to use "she"/"they" etc is literally the worst crime you could commit on the internet, so all discussion of this individual must be shut down. (Person in question also called Jewish students "Zios" and lauded violence against the police).

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MatildaOfTuscany Wed 24-Aug-16 23:14:59

Just to be clear, in case I get deleted for misgendering - I am using the word "person" in the sense it is used in moral and political philosophy - to mean someone capable of moral agency. You see, I don't know what words I am allowed to use and what words I am not allowed to use in this Orwellian newspeak hell you're foisting on us.

ClaudetteWyms Wed 24-Aug-16 23:15:24

Yup, what they said.

Italiangreyhound Wed 24-Aug-16 23:16:15

Shutting down legitimate discussion happens a lot around the world. I thought we were free in this country to discuss things that impact us? Are we not?

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Wed 24-Aug-16 23:16:33

MNHQ's deletion message included this: We understand folks will want to talk more about pronouns and trans issues in general on another thread perhaps - but we would ask that you do so in way that doesn't rehash or repeat this thread.

There was one person on that thread who wanted to talk about general trans issues and pronouns... Everyone else wanted to discuss why Edinburgh University was not condemning the very public very unpleasant acts of one of their elected representatives.

BeyondLovesSweetDee Wed 24-Aug-16 23:18:28

Following this thread.

I (and more so special who has since been banned) posted about bisexuality re this person and their former position. Specials posts were heartfelt and I feel it was important that they stand. But no, discussion was derailed to the point that the whole thread went.

Greaterthanthesumoftheparts Wed 24-Aug-16 23:18:54

Ok now I like to think I'm pretty much a love and let live type of person, feel free to search my posting history, I ha e nothing to hide.

On the 'thread that presumably must not be mentioned' aka ttpmmbm I posted something very reasonable as did many other posters. And I might add I have never questioned before a mnhq decision.

So, why is a whole thread, where there was legitimate debate deleted, rather thanindividual problem posts.

I would like to ask MNHQ if any of my individual
Posts required deletion, and if not, why delete the entire thread due to certain individuals breaking talk guidelines??

BeyondLovesSweetDee Wed 24-Aug-16 23:19:47

It's not the first bullshit deletion message of today though angry

Egosumquisum Wed 24-Aug-16 23:19:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LRDtheFeministDragon Wed 24-Aug-16 23:20:26

italian - I know we have freedom of speech. I mean, I'd like MNHQ to talk to us about where and if we could talk on MN about these issues.

I'm perfectly fine with debates about pronouns going on around me, if that's what's wanted. What bothers me is that MNHQ appear to have read an OP about a LGBT rep who was engaging in discriminatory and threatening conduct to lesbians, Jewish students and women, and still somehow concluded the thread was 'about' pronouns.

MorrisZapp Wed 24-Aug-16 23:21:00

There has to be a tipping point. The intelligent, politically engaged women of MN aren't going to take this pish lying down.

Banning us from discussing the erosion of our rights is just the ultimate dick move. I'm deeply suspicious of your reasons for doing so.

HopeClearwater Wed 24-Aug-16 23:21:03

I was following that thread with interest and fail to see what justified deletion of the whole thing. Discussion was totally and unnecessarily shut down imo.
Agree with you, LRD

AyeAmarok Wed 24-Aug-16 23:21:08

Oh did that thread get pulled? For that reason? There was a lot of offensive stuff on there (to women). Shouldn't be surprised it got pulled for the opposite reason.

Priorities seem very skewed on here at the moment.

NauticalDisaster Wed 24-Aug-16 23:21:46

Why are you silencing our voices, MNHQ? Pulling the thread just after reinstating it was a poor decision. even if you don't want us to post on it anymore why not reinstate it but lock it for new posts? It was a good discussion.

ThatStewie Wed 24-Aug-16 23:22:04

The deletion message misrepresents the discussion on the thread. Many of us were discussing Edinburgh University's decision to allow an elected student union official to engage in misogyny and anti-semitism, as well as harass and threaten female students. One person on the thread was complaining and, frankly, deliberately derailing the thread to talk about pronouns. To suggest that numerous posters were engaged in deliberate misgendering and transphobia is fallacious and unkind.

LRDtheFeministDragon Wed 24-Aug-16 23:22:36

The full message is here (drawing attention to the last line!):

We're afraid we felt we had to delete this thread as we feel like it has strayed way outside of our Talk Guidelines. We do regard deliberate, malicious misgendering (as opposed to accidental slip ups) as transphobic. Thank you to everyone who took the time to post thoughtfully here. We understand folks will want to talk more about pronouns and trans issues in general on another thread perhaps - but we would ask that you do so in way that doesn't rehash or repeat this thread. Thanks.

MorrisZapp Wed 24-Aug-16 23:23:20

Personal abuse? Oh no you figgy didn't, lady.

AskBasil Wed 24-Aug-16 23:23:58

Could you please define what you mean by the word transphobic, Mumsnet.

situatedknowledge Wed 24-Aug-16 23:24:11

I didn't see the personal attacks, but surely those could have been deleted and the valuable and I think important issue re EUSA be continued to be aired?

Egosumquisum Wed 24-Aug-16 23:24:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Brekekekex Wed 24-Aug-16 23:24:22

I'm with you, LRD.

And I'm pretty taken aback that Special was banned. I was on the thread from beginning to end and thought she was polite and reasonable.

I'd like to think that we can talk about threats to women's rights, and the abuse and erasure of lesbians from minorities rights movements, on this site in particular, without constant derailing and deletions.

AskBasil Wed 24-Aug-16 23:24:30

Is there a dictionary definition? Or is it just made up as we go along?

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