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Maya Forstater court case

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Bardonnay Thu 14-Nov-19 06:14:22

Sorry to link to the DM but they've covered Maya Forstater's upcoming court case here:

Maya's account of events is here and her post links to updates about the case:**@MForstater**/i-lost-my-job-for-speaking-up-about-womens-rights-2af2186ae84

HandsOffMyRights Thu 14-Nov-19 06:18:36

I'm going to follow this important case carefully.

Solidarity with Maya.

Sunkisses Thu 14-Nov-19 06:41:34

Thanks for posting this. @HandsOffMyRights is right that this is an extremely important case. That no one should lose their job for believing (and stating) something that the vast majority of the country know is true. That no one can change sex.

Bardonnay Thu 14-Nov-19 06:54:45

It's so Orwellian, it's frightening

teawamutu Thu 14-Nov-19 07:29:15

Excellent article. Love that they produced the offending tweet.

I'm concerned that, utterly sensible and inarguable as it seems, there might be some legal loophole to prevent GC views being treated as a belief. But Maya and her legal team clearly do and they're the experts so here's hoping!

LordProfFekkoThePenguinPhD Thu 14-Nov-19 07:31:26

Keeping an eye on this.

FannyCann Thu 14-Nov-19 07:34:26

My problem is I don't see GC views as belief - they are fact! How that translates to the court case we will see.

LordProfFekkoThePenguinPhD Thu 14-Nov-19 07:35:23

Fairies and mermaids are a belief. Turning water into wine is a belief.

Facts are facts.

littlbrowndog Thu 14-Nov-19 08:28:49

Good luck maya

AnotherLass Thu 14-Nov-19 08:35:41

I just had a look at Maya's updates and I think that this is just some kind of provisional hearing - the proper one isn't going to be till April 2020. Just so people don't get unduly excited

boatyardblues Thu 14-Nov-19 08:36:06

Perhaps the reverse is how they are going to argue it: that the tenet of changing sex is a belief (in the face of scientific fact/evidence to the contrary) and that Maya’s right NOT to share that belief ir be compelled to manifestare are covered by the same EA protections that atheists are covered by.

IWantADifferentName Thu 14-Nov-19 08:50:11

Good luck, Maya. Hopefully, this case will wake people up!

drspouse Thu 14-Nov-19 09:02:19

I think it's helpful to see gender identity as a belief and gender critical feminism as like atheism. You can't prove God exists, but you should be free to pray if you wish.
Nobody has a right to force you to say that God exists.

Datun Thu 14-Nov-19 09:05:46

Interesting. That she is defending it as a belief. Rather than a fact. This is what she says:

1. The belief must be genuinely held;

2. It must be a belief and not an opinion or viewpoint based on the present state of information available;

3. It must be a belief as to a weighty and substantial aspect of human life and behaviour

4. It must attain a certain level of cogency, seriousness, cohesion and importance; and

5. It must be worthy of respect in a democratic society, be not incompatible with human dignity and not conflict with the fundamental rights of other

Given that it's a fact, it must surely meet all the criteria. And I can't see how a belief that a person can change sex can meet all that criteria.

It, as always, comes down to your definition of the word woman. Hopefully, this will be something that can finally be addressed.

If nothing else, it will give publicity to the issue.

thecompletenonsequitur Thu 14-Nov-19 09:06:55

LBC now.

BessyK Thu 14-Nov-19 09:16:20


ChattyLion Thu 14-Nov-19 09:25:50

This could be a fundamentally important case setting protective free speech precedent for women. I am very grateful to Maya Forstater for pursuing it.
Worries me though how ‘believing in facts’ has to be presented as ’a philosophical belief’ in order to get any legal protection for believing facts, though. Have I understood that correctly?

Surely the onus should be on the person who believes the non-factual idea, to justify why another person should be sacked for talking about facts that are true? It’s not legally enough to find written down or spoken facts ‘offensive‘ to justify sacking someone else. So whether believing facts becomes recognised as a ‘philosophical belief’ or not in law, surely Maya F should not have been punished for holding that factual belief.

I think it would be a massive win for freedoms of various kinds though if political beliefs like being gender critical (...believing that gender is a made-up damaging power exercise to benefit men but which causes real harm to women, men and children...) could be established in ‘philosophical belief’ legal protections by this case.

My problem with ‘believing fact’ = ‘philosophical belief’ is that this implies it’s equally ok or defensible to believe in facts or another alternative belief. In effect is this not just saying that ‘it’s all relative’? That there should be no special weight placed on truth and fact relative to other views, which are objectively philosophical beliefs?

Actually I don’t want my doctor (for example) to operate on me, or the judge to convict me, based on their philosophical believings. I would like a facts-based presumption for my own safety, please.

I’m also not sure that I would call it a ‘philosophy‘ that humans can change sex, either. I’m no way qualified to define a philosophy... but I’d probably call genderism a political belief or a religious belief rather than a ‘philosophical belief’. It makes genderism feel too much like the product of decades of academic debate (which is still being stifled) or centuries of independent thought, when actually it’s an anti-factual and also seems to be an anti-debate position, at least in the current way it’s practiced. Where women can be sacked for disagreeing or offering a factual counter-argument.

Datun Thu 14-Nov-19 09:35:13

Yes, I'm not quite sure why she's gone with belief. But I imagine it's something to do with the letter of the law.

MForstater Thu 14-Nov-19 09:49:13

Hi (and thanks for all the spades!! This is happening)

On the belief vs fact thing - the case law Grainger plc v Nicholson was about a man who had a strong belief and commitment to action on climate change . Nicholson's belief was that mankind is heading towards catastrophic climate change (based on science - i.e. climate change is a fact). The second part of his belief was that it is important - we have moral imperative to act - both parts of his belief were held to be protected.

We are arguing that gender critical position parallels this: sex is a material reality (and the truth of this assertion is actively being denied) AND it is important to recognise sex in order to tackle discrimination against women and girls.

This is in relation to discrimination law (which protects people against discrimination based on belief; it does not try to work out if the belief is true).

I'm giving evidence tomorrow and will be 'in purdah' until that is done, so there will be no more updates from me for a while, but hopefully someone will come along and report from the hearing on this thread.

BessyK Thu 14-Nov-19 10:00:38

Lots of men wishing to comment on LBC.

terfsandwich Thu 14-Nov-19 10:05:31

Best wishes from Australia, Maya wine

Bardonnay Thu 14-Nov-19 10:10:14

Good luck Maya. And solidarity!

PencilsInSpace Thu 14-Nov-19 10:10:16

Good luck Maya! flowers

Here is the Grainger case:

para 30 sheds some light I think:

In my judgment, if a person can establish that he holds a philosophical belief which is based on science, as opposed, for example, to religion, then there is no reason to disqualify it from protection by the Regulations. The Employment Judge drew attention to the existence of empiricist philosophers, no doubt such as Hume and Locke. The best example, as it seems to me, which was canvassed during the course of the hearing, is by reference to the clash of two such philosophies, exemplified in the play Inherit the Wind, i.e. one not simply between those who supported Creationism and those who did not, but between those who positively supported, and wished to teach, only Creationism and those who positively supported, and wished to teach, only Darwinism. Darwinism must plainly be capable of being a philosophical belief, albeit that it may be based entirely on scientific conclusions (not all of which may be uncontroversial).

NonnyMouse1337 Thu 14-Nov-19 10:17:38

Good luck!

I, too, was a bit apprehensive about framing GC views as a belief, but thanks for Maya and others fit clarifying the underlying legal principles in pursuing this angle.

Notwiththeseknees Thu 14-Nov-19 10:20:12

Good luck & thank you.

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