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Amnesty International say - 'no such thing as a ‘biologically female/male body’'

(524 Posts)
FarNorth Thu 03-Dec-20 18:04:33

This is a post on mumsnet, quoting Amnesty International, who recently signed a controversial letter about sex and gender.
(The underlining is mine.)

"A week ago I saw that Amnesty had responded to a complaint about the open letter signed in Ireland and in that response had said the above.
I wrote to Amnesty as a long time supporter and queried whether this was their official stance, and have today received a reply.
This is an extract - see esp para 3.

“We stand over the letter, which we signed to stand in solidarity with the trans community and against those spreading hate.

There are attempts to decontextualise certain phrases used in the letter in a way that misleads and confuses people, which is a common tactic used against many of our human rights campaigns. For example, the letter asks for media and politicians to not give legitimacy to those spreading vitriol or misinformation. This is being framed as a call to take away their political representation, which anyone reading the letter will clearly see is not what it means.

Another example is the letter’s referring to those ‘defending biology’. Allowing self-determination of our bodies is a basic principle of feminism and human rights. There is no such thing as a ‘biologically female/male body’ - a person’s genitalia doesn’t determine their gender. Those that seek to exclude and disenfranchise groups of people, or force people into one gender or their other on that basis, are working against basic human rights principles.

We feel much of the current media reporting and conversations on social media with regards to self-identification is misguided. Restricting the rights of transgender people, and omitting the use of inclusive language will not advance or protect women’s rights.“

David0205 Thu 03-Dec-20 18:33:49

In that case there is no basis for gender based sport!. If any male can self assign female to compete it finishes female sport

They are talking rubbish I’m fully expecting women’s sport to continue

janeainsworth Thu 03-Dec-20 18:46:35

I can accept that a person's genitalia doesn't determine their gender.

But no such thing as male and female bodies??
We are animals, and biology is biology. Do they believe that a dog or cat or a rabbit with male or female genitalia can't be classified as male or female?

Galaxy Thu 03-Dec-20 18:50:49

Crikey the backtracking and distancing that is going to take place when all this comes out in the wash will be something to behold. You would think they would see the writing on the wall with the Keira bell judgement.

Feelingmyage55 Thu 03-Dec-20 18:55:05

When delivering a baby, what is the midwife going to say? It’s a ...... baby!? I’m confused. I know someone who is trans. It is simply never mentioned, not in a dark or repressed way. They just are who they are. Full stop. Is that not enough. I’ll duck below the parapet.

Blossoming Thu 03-Dec-20 19:06:04

It’s woke crap, in 20 years time they are going to look so stupid.

Blinko Thu 03-Dec-20 19:08:13


When delivering a baby, what is the midwife going to say? It’s a ...... baby!? I’m confused. I know someone who is trans. It is simply never mentioned, not in a dark or repressed way. They just are who they are. Full stop. Is that not enough. I’ll duck below the parapet.

I think/hope there will come a day in the future when we can all just be who we are, regardless of gender or genitalia. What I find troubling is that people feel the need to undergo invasive and traumatic surgery and hormonal treatment in order to 'fit' with societal norms. Very worrying indeed.

Galaxy Thu 03-Dec-20 19:13:37

To be fair amnesty have been a beacon of misogyny for some time now, their views on prostitution for example.

petra Thu 03-Dec-20 19:30:11

I'm afraid we are loosing the 'woke' battle. 2 cases in recent weeks have shown this. Suzanne Moore has been hounded out of the Gaudian ( you have to laugh at that) and a master at Eton has been sacked.

TerriBull Thu 03-Dec-20 19:39:41

Not only was Suzanne Moore hounded out of The Guardian, but like other dissenters from what has now become an orthodoxy, she and her child/ren received rape threats on line, as do other women who choose to challenge such concepts hmm There's only one school of thought on such subjects and as we know nothing is up for debate anymore shock

Galaxy Thu 03-Dec-20 19:43:27

No we are not losing it just is going to be a hard road and many women, brave women will be hounded out. But we have come a long way. No debate is over, the Keira bell case was discussed on newsnight, and that would not have happened even 6 months ago.

Spinnaker Thu 03-Dec-20 20:04:27


It’s woke crap, in 20 years time they are going to look so stupid.

Well said !

Smileless2012 Thu 03-Dec-20 20:13:02

I hope it doesn't take as long as 20 years.

NanKate Thu 03-Dec-20 20:23:33

If we carry on down this slippery slope we won’t be able to call ourselves ‘grandmother’ or ‘grandfather’. It’s truly frightening.

SueDonim Thu 03-Dec-20 21:11:37

So everyone can get prostate cancer and everyone can get endometriosis? That’s a win for science. hmm hmm

Still, at least this report is a small pushback.

Doodledog Thu 03-Dec-20 21:26:21

I have cancelled my Direct Debit to Amnesty. I have been losing patience with them for some time. I stopped my contribution to Stonewall via what little I spend on Amazon a while ago for the same reason.

ginny Thu 03-Dec-20 21:35:23

A person does not need to be defined by their biological body, they can live as they want, be who they want. But surely the fact remains that in general there are two different kinds of biological body.
I’m wondering too, why are sports divided into male and female .

MrsThreadgoode Thu 03-Dec-20 22:07:37

sports are separate due to the different strengths of men and women, which is why ‘we ‘ don’t want transgender men in women’s sports.

25Avalon Thu 03-Dec-20 22:14:25

But we already do have transgender women (who were once male) in Women’s Football. They do have to be on hormone treatment and have an assessment.

FarNorth Thu 03-Dec-20 23:11:55


But we already do have transgender women (who were once male) in Women’s Football. They do have to be on hormone treatment and have an assessment.

Indeed we do have transwomen (who are all still male) in women's and girls' sports such as running, cycling, rugby, weightlifting - they win prizes easily.
In the USA, this can mean girls losing out on sports scholarships to university.

In non-professional sport, there is no need for these men to be on hormone treatment or have any sort of assessment.
Even in professional sport, a man who has lowered testosterone still has a much higher level than women.
He also still has a stronger physique making his competing against women completely unfair.

Davidhs just google 'transwomen in women's sport', or something similar, and you will find out what's happening.

trisher Thu 03-Dec-20 23:42:36

The issues of sex testing in sports have led to many instances of humiliation and even mutilation for women. So the situation is neither as simple nor as clear cut as some people claim. Many competitors have been castigated because their physicality did not conform to what was considered female. Developing countries have pressured women into surgical procedures to ensure they presented as "normal"
Interestingly the only study of hormonal levels in male athletes found that there were overlaps between male and female athletes
16.5% of men had low testosterone levels, whereas 13.7% of women had high levels with complete overlap between the sexes
Quite how women's sport could be restricted entirely to people who identifed as women from birth it is difficult to see. None of the measures tried so far have been successful and some have actually caused harm to the people involved.

CocoPops Fri 04-Dec-20 02:59:40

"There is no such thing as a biologically female/male body" say Amnesty International.

Loislovesstewie Fri 04-Dec-20 05:38:06

I am furious about this, my BIOLOGY is female; my gender may well be something I wish to choose. I might FEEL as though I am male and wish to transition but that is NOT biology. I have nothing against trans people, they are entitled to do what they want to their bodies because it is theirs to do with as they wish; but please can organizations stop pretending that the vast majority of us who are biologically male/female are wrong. These organizations don't get that they stand the risk of alienating the vast majority of the population by their #woke nonsense.

Sorry had to vent as I am getting really fed up with this. Women are being erased from society; we are becoming 'people who menstruate', mothers are now 'birthing parents'etc, it's time to stop!
Oh, and having been seriously sexually assaulted in a place where I should have been safe I want toilets to be for biological females only.

vegansrock Fri 04-Dec-20 07:10:22

Amnesty have gone way down in my opinion now. They said they were “disappointed” with the Keira Bell judgement. Weren’t they supposed to be. campaigning group for political prisoners? I won’t be supporting them again.

Galaxy Fri 04-Dec-20 07:56:29

The pretence that we suddenly dont know what biological sex is and that this cant be established in individuals is deeply dangerous in particular to transmen and transwomen. In order to receive adequate healthcare for example sex is very important and will impact on most treatment they receive. We also need to stop conflating intersex and trans as the intersex community have begged that this does not happen. Sex is a protected characteristic under the equality act pretending it does not exist is deeply offensive and would not happen for any other protected characteristic.