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This comment by Billy Bragg perfectly sums up…

Index ID: CBBB — Publication date: April 28th, 2024

Note: J.K. Rowling published this on Twitter. Original post:

This comment by Billy Bragg [@billybragg] perfectly sums up what left wing women have taken from left wing men over the last few years. The problem isn’t whether Julie Bindel and I are correct on the issues, but that certain right-wingers agree with us.

If you’ve spent any time at all on the left of politics, you’re familiar with the progressive male class warrior, usually middle-class himself, whose interest in women’s issues begins and ends with sex work, stripping and abortions. He might claim to be a feminist ally and mutter vaguely about ‘equality’ if the need arises, but when a genuine assault on women’s rights erupted under his nose, he cut left wing women adrift without a second thought. He expected us to be so blindly tribal that we’d surrender single sex spaces, jettison the very language we use to describe ourselves, give up fair sport, agree rapists should be locked up in women’s prisons and that lesbians are bigots for not wanting to sleep with the penis-ed, because (horrors!) some people on the right thought these things were wrong, too.

Over the last few years, a huge number of PMCWs have become men’s rights activists in all but name, and it’s been profoundly depressing, if not entirely unexpected, to see how enjoyable they’ve found it. Even while attacking women for finding themselves on the same side as right-wingers, the PMCWs stampeded to join the team that was threatening women with rape and violence, harassing women’s conferences, attempting to block access to gender critical events and physically assaulting female demonstrators. PMCWs are everywhere online, lecturing women reliant on state-run services for not welcoming the male-bodied into communal changing rooms and rape crisis shelters, presuming to police women’s language and tone, turning a blind eye to all statistics on male sexual violence that might contradict the ‘you’re all scaremongering bigots’ narrative and demonstrating that their deepest empathy will always be reserved for those who were born with a penis.

The truth is that the left has fucked up monumentally on gender identity ideology and until it owns the mistake, it will continue to hand the right valid talking points. As more and more PMCWs realise this, they’ll take shameless refuge in accusations that we, the women criticising the injustice and insanity of gender identity ideology, were enabling the far-right. The fact is that they’ve done exactly that, by refusing to accept that there was anything wrong with a movement that was causing serious harm to troubled young people, trampling all over women’s rights and seeking to remove single-sex services for the most vulnerable.

The sense of betrayal women on the left feel towards men like Bragg will take a long time to disappear, if it ever does. I think we all take some grim satisfaction, though, in the fact that evidence of the PMCWs’ misogyny and complicity is a matter of public record, because the panicky back-pedalling and whitewashing that’s just begun is quite something to behold.

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