Okay. Here is what we say in response.

  1. What Rights do you say Trans People don’t have? 
  2. It is not a human right to have everyone else treat you the way you want to be treated. 
  3. It is not a human right to be granted access to things reserved for categories of people that you don’t belong to. 

#WomensRightsAreHumanRights – see how this works? (would it help if I wrote it in capitals or repeated it five times?)

Hardly anyone answers the first question. If they do…

There are some misconceptions here. People talk about “dignity” as if it was a human right to be treated with dignity. If it were, the human rights mob would be mopping up the catcalling van drivers.

People also talk about equal treatment, but this doesn’t extend to whatever health care you want to have, for instance. There are plenty of people who hate their body, but don’t get to have treatment.

There isn’t a human right to make someone say things they actually don’t believe, either. Coerced speech is a breach of others’ human right to free speech.

You might also hear mentioned the “spousal veto”, which means that before a trans person can get a GRC, they need their spouse’s consent or to get a divorce. As only a few thousand GRCs have been issued, often to unmarried people, it doesn’t affect many people, and it seems only reasonable to give the spouse the chance to get out of a profoundly altered marriage – otherwise, it would breach their human rights. In addition, the several years it takes to get a GRC is ample time for the transitioning spouse to get their divorce sorted. 

The closest thing to a human right that trans people might see as being breached would be access to appropriate medical care, which is certainly patchy in the UK. It is a pity that Stonewall doesn’t devote more energy to sorting that out, isn’t it? 

Forward to using pronouns doesn’t hurt anyone

Back to introduction

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