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Anyone up to speed with the Lindsay Shepherd case (the Canadian TA)?

(137 Posts)
ConfessionsOfTeenageDramaQueen Sat 23-Jun-18 21:23:11

For those who aren't Lindsay is a 20-something TA at a Canadian University. Last November she was teaching a class on pronouns and, during the class, showed a 5 minute clip of a debate (that had been broadcast on Canadian TV) that featured a panel of speakers discussing gender pronouns in the context of trans issues.

The panel consisted of a few people including a trans-man, and Jordan Peterson.

After the class a student mentioned the clip to someone who reported it to the local LGBT group on campus who complained to the faculty who hauled her into a disciplinary meeting, which she had the presence of mind to record.

The meeting is 40 minutes long but I implore you to listen: not only does it give an insight into the Orwellian mindset of these two male professors, but their comments are absolutely dripping with sexism:

I'd be interested to know what others make of this case.

Typeractive Sat 23-Jun-18 21:32:33

When the incident was properly investigated by the University, it emerged that there had in fact been no complaint from any student, the professors had trumped it all up so that they could summon Lindsay Shepherd to their nasty little kangaroo court.

I'm really glad she had the presence of mind to record them. Bullies.

boatyardblues Sat 23-Jun-18 21:33:10

This has been covered in previous threads & the general consensus was she fought her corner well.

ConfessionsOfTeenageDramaQueen Sat 23-Jun-18 21:46:57

I hadn't seen the previous threads - are they recent? It's in the news again because she's now suing the university.

TransplantsArePlants Sat 23-Jun-18 22:01:32

TA = Teaching Assistant, not Trans Activist

Childrenofthestones Sat 23-Jun-18 23:21:58

Shes brilliant.
It must have taken balls of steel as a TA to take these bullies on.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Sun 24-Jun-18 00:13:22

There's a short interview with Lindsay last December here.

fmsfms Sun 24-Jun-18 00:50:00

Jordan Peterson is also suing the University

tobee Sun 24-Jun-18 01:12:46

This is so appalling. She comes across so well. They come across as bullies who are trying to brainwash her. They keep regurgitating the same argument. It's disgusting that this is what universities think they should be about. In 2018. Actually it's a disgraceful. It seems to render the purpose of university education redundant.

blackdoggotmytongueagain Sun 24-Jun-18 01:14:02

yeah - I was TAing at the same time and found the university's stance appalling. They did back down and she got an apology. It's interesting. At the time I supported her unequivocally (and I still support her) but she seems to have been stuck on a pedestal by a less salubrious following that can make her appear less free speech and more bigoted, which is a shame. (I don't mean JP - I don't follow the knee jerk dismissal of his stuff). She hasn't made too many friends with her controversial choices since the incident, if I'm honest. She's tried very hard to use deliberate controversy to big up her fame - the speaker series she was involved with have had some very controversial figures. (I don't believe in no-platforming in universities - but the deliberate choices of highly inflammatory speakers have made me wonder a bit about whether she was actually deliberating courting controversy using the clip, and the 'innocent grammar lesson' thing wasn't quite true...)
anyway. Yeah I follow the story as I am very aware of the pro-trans massive in Canadian academia, and I am curious as to outcomes. I follow Lindsay on twitter. I am... on the fence. But she's an interesting figure in pro-free-speech terms.

jgrobinson Sun 24-Jun-18 01:24:36

Interesting to hear your insight blackdog. I haven't worked if she was a right-winger from the start, or whether she was driven to the right by the SJW response to her. E.g. white tears:

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 01:25:32

I think it is both understandable and a shame that she is being nudged in the direction of the right wing as a result of this crap TBH.

I watched some of her interviews on YouTube and I find it uncomfortable how she is being courted by the rightwing and how she is vulnerable to this in a way because the left is condemning and vilifying her.

Watching the development is a case study in radicalisation. She reminded me of things Blair white says about her past as a SJW.

It seems Lindsay started out as being quite open and due to the crazy level of attention, much of it negative she is hardening her views. I don’t know if she’ll commit to rightwing views or not but certainly she’s been courted by it and is vulnerable to the tactics given she is receiving support from them when others she previously identified with are being horrible.

She’s human, that’s not surprising.

tobee Sun 24-Jun-18 02:00:33

In a way though, is what she may or may not have become irrelevant though? Or even how she was then or what her intentions are? It's the wider picture. Universities come up with bullshit about no platforming being necessary to protect students "in their home" from views the student union/university as a whole deem to be undesirable, at that time. Even if universities are bodies that invite students to take courses, and kick them out when they are not adhering to their ideology, you'd have thought being seen as a place of learning, open debate and inquiry, developing minds would override that?

It makes me think back to the case of Patrick Harrington. A bnp member who was infamously a student at the very left wing Polytechnic of North London in the 1980s.

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 02:04:06

Oh yeah, I agree. Who she is, what she may or may not have become is irrelevant regarding what happened. In fact these judgements regarding guilt by association and ideology are part of the whole problem. The original issue was whether or not her behaviour was unprofessional.

I just find, as a separate issue, watching what is happening now interesting!

mancheeze Sun 24-Jun-18 02:23:24

Lindsay Shepherd got lucky once. The reaction to Jordan Peterson by the admin was ridiculous and way out of line and I can't STAND Jordan Peterson as I know him as a men's rights activist.

However, if you continue to follow Lindsay, you'll see she says some pretty stupid things too.

I suppose they are two idiot ships that met in the night.

blackdoggotmytongueagain Sun 24-Jun-18 02:38:32

Mmm I actually do find the’what if’s’ interesting too though - largely because it is so non-U to dare not to prostrate yourself at the feet of the trans ideology, and so your choice of advocates are severely limited. So it’s... I dunno - tempting? when a group welcomes you with open arms and gees you up to dig your heels in. I actually think Lindsay’s story would have been easier to support unequivocally if she had migrated towards perhaps Meghan Murphy and Feminist Current, instead of being picked up by the right wing/ ‘free speech’ers.
I follow the UVic Womyn’s Centre too - they naturally leaned towards a woman centred solution after effectively being shut down by trans ideology - it’s ‘easier’ for me to align myself with that model, but it doesn’t mean that I’m not sympathetic with LS. In her position, she needed support and it was provided by a different group...

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 02:44:49

I agree blackdog whilst lamenting the reasons for that! I lament that it is understandable how she has been vulnerable to the shift to the right and that part of that is characterisation by the left as being rightwing...

Hence ‘case study in radicalisation’

I also agree that non of that matters re whether her original actions were ‘unprofessional’...

I found the banging on about ‘scholarly academic standards’ re Peterson <ahem> interesting given the lack of scrutiny given to the trans side and the infamous suicide stats - which absolutely do not pass muster according to the lengthy mansplain of peer review.

blackdoggotmytongueagain Sun 24-Jun-18 02:44:56

It is interesting to consider in terms of the current mn debacle too. Like Wilfred Laurier, mn are attempting to curtail speech that is perfectly allowable in real life. The clip Lindsay showed was from a mainstream show. The university declared it unacceptable in the same way that mn are not allowing posters to discuss stuff that is in the mainstream media ( specifically the stuff where Susie Green publicized her child and their experiences). And trans activists often accuse people standing up for women’s rights if being right wing bigots.
Mnhq and Wilfred Laurier’s knee jerk reactions are not a million miles apart. Wilfred Laurier did apologize though.

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 02:46:50

One part I do understand is being hamstrung by perceptions of legal responsibilities as a result of unclear laws...

It is the one point I have sympathy re the university over TBH.

blackdoggotmytongueagain Sun 24-Jun-18 02:51:56

<I wasn’t teaching at WL - but it could literally have been anywhere>
I don’t think the legal claim is a great idea. But if I squint a bit I can sort of see that it’s going to take ‘big’ legal challenges to change the course of Canadian legislation and it would be tempting to try and instigate. I don’t think she has a chance though. She should have moved universities after the apology and got on with it - but that’s probably projection!!!!

blackdoggotmytongueagain Sun 24-Jun-18 02:54:08

Totally that. The lack of clarity everywhere is insane. One side is seeking clarity and the other side is demanding obfuscation. And when you have people like Morgane fecking Oger deliberately throwing their weight around, it’s even worse.

jgrobinson Sun 24-Jun-18 04:20:12

She should have moved universities after the apology

She would have no chance of an academic career in Canada. Possibly she could have gone to the US, but even there most institutions would not hire her. So there's not much point doing a PhD.

That point also bears also on her political drift. Feminism won't provide a sustainable career, whereas the right-wing movement will.

Dragoncake Sun 24-Jun-18 08:58:27

I read about the case here when it happened but somehow missed the outcome of the investigation and fact that there were no complaints shock This is horrifying. That poor young woman.

It led me to look into Peterson, with whom I disagree on various things. But who surprised me by being nowhere near as extreme as the Guardian had led me to believe.

UtherSonofUther Sun 24-Jun-18 10:53:59

I think she was a lefty before this whole thing happened, but I'm not surprised she's seeking to hear other voices, even the more "contorversial" ones. She's suing the university because after the apology there's been a toxic environment around her, with open hostility so she won't be able to build a career in academia, at least in Canada, because of the actions of her senior professors. I think JP is suing as well, not sure on what grounds but might be defamation (one of the woke professors compared him to Hitler...).

fmsfms Sun 24-Jun-18 16:00:31

@jgrobinson Sun 24-Jun-18 01:24:36

"Interesting to hear your insight blackdog. I haven't worked if she was a right-winger from the start, or whether she was driven to the right by the SJW response to her."

These days not being a far left SJW is the same as being Right Wing, Far Right, Alt-Right, Nazi, Fascist etc - hence why Peterson got grouped with Milo and Hitler in her disciplinary

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