Just when i thought the the NZ media was getting more sympathetic towards transgender people a notorious Right wing rag (The New Zealand Herald) published an ideologically biased family first press release as if it were actual content. in this article the author notorious right wing hate speech merchant Bob McCoskrie claimed that Transgender people were mentally ill and confused he based his arguments biological essentialism despite the medical irreverence of this theory. he backed up his hate speech by using the example of Walt Heyer a Christian ex Transgender person who now campaigns against allowing transgender people to access basic treatment.
A further argument put forward by the article in question was the idea of denying transgender access to suitable medical treatment until adulthood (ie after puberty) this is problematic in so many ways. first of all many transgender people are aware that they are transgender from a very young and secondly forcing Transgender people to go though puberty as the gender they do not identify with is cruel and contributes to an unsafe environment for transgender people. as Transgender woman who has gone through puberty as a boy I speak from experience when i say that this is simply unacceptable and I am please with our allies within the trade union movement who are helping us make a stand against such bigotry.
One of the most problematic aspects of Family First is that is an ideological hate group that masquerades as a family friendly charity in order to spread it's messages of hate against woman LGBT people and sex workers to an audience that is much wider than a small group of bigoted religious nut-jobs could otherwise hope reach. Family First has managed to influence some conservative working class family's and has contributed to an unsafe family environment for many Transgender people in this country.
Transgender people are already forced to live to live in an extremely unsafe environment and when the mainstream media give transphobic hate groups a platform for their bigoted ideas an already hostile environment becomes even more inhospitable. i would however like to commend the New
Zealand trade union movement for helping to make our lives more dignified. I know we must never underestimate the power of solidarity we are stronger together and i hope that the fight for Transgender dignity and basic civil rights in one that will be won within my lifetime.