The Corner

PC Culture

BBC Segment on the Definition of ‘Woman’

A woman has the symbol for women painted on her face during a protest against violence against women in Buenos Aires, Argentina, June 3, 2017. (Marcos Brindicci/Reuters)

Someone in Britain ought to buy Anna from Warwickshire a drink. On a BBC news segment “Your Questions Answered” with the leader of the Liberal Democrats, Jo Swinson, Anna asked Swinson to define what a woman is.

SWINSON: Well, I know I’m a woman. And I think we do– we know what we are. And I think all women are important and their rights need to be protected, whether they are black, Asian, white. Whether they are gay or straight or bi; whether they have a very privileged upbringing, or they don’t have much money, whether they are cis [newspeak for actual women] or trans [newspeak for men who self-identify as women] whether they have a disability, we are all important, in all of those different ways.

ANNA FROM WARWICKSHIRE: So how can you tell what a woman is?

SWINSON: Well, I mean I’m just of, sort of, trying to understand, you know, what you’re getting at. I think we know when we engage with each other, we know if we are a woman. And I can tell you that I am, right? So, you know, we’re not going to start a scenario where we go and perform inspections on people, are we?

ANNA FROM WARWICKSHIRE: No. What if a man wears a dress to work twice a week? Is he a woman?

SWINSON: Not necessarily.

ANNA FROM WARWICKSHIRE: But could he be?

SWINSON: I think that people can understand their own identity. And I think it’s right to respect people in terms of their gender identity. And that’s for them to say.

[Emphasis/brackets added]

Then later:

ANNA FROM WARWICKSHIRE: Obviously we respect people, and everyone has a right to express themselves. . . but under self-identification [laws] what’s to stop a male sex offender walking into the changing rooms and saying, ‘Do you know what? Today I identify as a woman.’ Should we be kind and let him?

SWINSON: So, in a sense, I’ve gone into gym changing rooms, right? And I’ve never been asked for a certificate. Right? I’ve never been asked. So that’s not what you currently have right now. If anybody goes into a changing room and is acting in a way that is any way predatory or anti-social then the institution, the gym, or wherever it is, the swimming pool, should be able to take action on that basis. But what has happened.

ANNA FROM WARWICKSHIRE: But it’s a safeguard isn’t it, Jo? What we have is a safeguard from men, don’t we?

So, there we go. Jo Swinson, the leader of the third-largest political party in the United Kingdom, does not know what a woman is, and has promised complete reform of the Gender Recognition Act, which she does not understand the consequences of. Thanks again, Anna, for such excellent questions.

Madeleine Kearns is a William F. Buckley Fellow in Political Journalism at the National Review Institute. She is from Glasgow, Scotland, and is a trained singer.

Most Popular

White House

Impeachment Doesn’t Require a Crime

Senate Republicans, by and large, have reached an unspoken consensus about President Trump and Ukraine. He should not have put a temporary freeze on congressionally authorized aid to Ukraine, should not have dabbled with using the aid to get Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden or a nutty theory about Ukrainian ... Read More
White House

Impeachment Doesn’t Require a Crime

Senate Republicans, by and large, have reached an unspoken consensus about President Trump and Ukraine. He should not have put a temporary freeze on congressionally authorized aid to Ukraine, should not have dabbled with using the aid to get Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden or a nutty theory about Ukrainian ... Read More
Film & TV

Larry David Goes MAGA

For a liberal Democrat, Larry David sometimes comes off as America’s reactionary id. Last night, on a superb tenth-season opener of Curb Your Enthusiasm, David made an extended joke about the (in)famous Make America Great Again cap. To a certain extent, I think the joke here is on Larry David. David’s ... Read More
Film & TV

Larry David Goes MAGA

For a liberal Democrat, Larry David sometimes comes off as America’s reactionary id. Last night, on a superb tenth-season opener of Curb Your Enthusiasm, David made an extended joke about the (in)famous Make America Great Again cap. To a certain extent, I think the joke here is on Larry David. David’s ... Read More
World

Alarmists Were Wrong about the Soleimani Strike

Two weeks ago, the United States seemed on the brink of starting another war in the Middle East after a drone strike killed Iran’s most notorious spymaster, Qasem Soleimani, as he departed an international airport in Baghdad. The shadowy general, in charge of the Iranian equivalent of the CIA, was one of the ... Read More
World

Alarmists Were Wrong about the Soleimani Strike

Two weeks ago, the United States seemed on the brink of starting another war in the Middle East after a drone strike killed Iran’s most notorious spymaster, Qasem Soleimani, as he departed an international airport in Baghdad. The shadowy general, in charge of the Iranian equivalent of the CIA, was one of the ... Read More