01:28 GMT +314 October 2019
Listen Live
    Woman inside man

    British TV Producer Gets Police Warning for 'Deadnaming' Transgender Activist

    © Photo : pixabay
    Get short URL

    The acrimonious high-profile row comes amid ongoing public debate in the UK about the future of gender recognition

    Graham Linehan, co-creator of the famed British television comedy 'Father Ted,' has been given a verbal harassment warning by police for 'deadnaming' a female transgender activist on Twitter.

    Stephanie Hayden, a 45-year-old lawyer from Leeds, reported Linehan to the police for using her previous male name in public, a practice colloquially known as 'deadnaming.' 

    READ MORE: Switzerland About to Criminalize Homophobia, Transphobia

    On top of that, she reportedly complained to the authorities that Linehan had refused to recognize her newly assigned gender by referring to her as "he" in a number of tweets.

    The individuals reportedly first became embroiled in a personal tit-for-tat after disagreeing on Twitter. 

    According to the UK's Independent newspaper, Ms Hayden said in a public statement that, "I don't take kindly to a public figure tweeting about me referring to me as a man and putting my legal name in quotation marks to suggest it's not valid."

    ​Mr Linehan has previously tweeted calling Ms Hayden "Stephanie/Tony/Steve," which are all references to her past names.

    Police in West Yorkshire spoke to the high-profile writer and forbid him from contacting Ms Hayden.

    ​Mr Linehan, who is also known for other British TV shows like 'Black Boots' and 'The IT Crowd,' is quoted widely in British media as having said in response, "The police asked me to stop contacting someone I had no intention of contacting. It was a bit like asking me to never contact Charlie Sheen."

    READ MORE: Hate Crimes Against Transgender People on Rise in UK: Police Authorities

    As if the case wasn't mind-boggling enough, Hayden is preparing to drag Linehan to the courts on charges of defamation and harassment after the tweets that, according to her were, "deliberately misgendering."

    ​The UK's Telegraph has reported that in the court papers, filed on Monday October 1, evidence to be used against Linehan includes a tweet which he allegedly directed at Hayden on September 26 2018, which reads: "Yes we must always be nice to conmen, sexual predators and misogynists hijacking a noble movement for their own ends."

    ​Hayden, who is now legally female, was born as ‘Anthony Halliday,' and began her medical treatment to become a woman in 2007. She was granted a ‘Gender Recognition Certificate' (GRC) in 2018. As it stands, if someone in the UK wishes to have their gender changed and legally recognized as such, they have to apply for a GRC, which legally requires accompanying diagnosis by a medical professional.

    READ MORE: Swedish Professor Slammed for Saying Men, Women Biologically Different

    Yet, Mr Linehan is hardly the first celebrity to face the charge of transphobia.

    Germaine Greer

    The lauded Australian academic and feminist writer, Germaine Greer, got herself deep in opprobrium back in 2015 when she said that transgender woman are not "real" woman. Following that comment, she was blasted as a "misogynist" and a "transphobe" by online activists, despite being regarded as one of the major voices of the second-wave feminist movement of the 1960s.

    A petition was put in circulation at the time at Cardiff University, Wales, calling for a lecture Greer was scheduled to give there, titled "Woman and Power: The Lessons of the 20th Century," to be canceled. The petition garnered upward of 3,000 signatures.

    Although Greer eventually delivered the lecture despite the campaign to silence her, she later told the BBC's Newsnight that, "apparently people have deiced that because I don't think that post-operative transgender men are woman, I'm not allowed to talk."

    Anne Widdecombe

    The veteran British former conservative party politician and public commentator, Anne Widdecombe, found herself on the receiving end of online allegations of transphobia in early 2018 while participating in the reality television show 'Celebrity Big Brother.'

    READ MORE: Prison System Tries to Erase Transgender People By Ignoring Needs — Activist

    Miss Widdecombe had a small disagreement with transgender housemate, India Willoughby, over the use of towels. After the acrimony had cooled off, Miss Willoughby went to hug Widdecombe, but the latter quickly backed off, leading some to conclude that she was thus guilty of transphobia.

    Amir Khan

    British Boxer Amir Khan earned himself a telling off in July of this year when he uploaded a picture of himself next to Caitlyn Jenner, tagging her pre-transition name, 'Bruce.'

    Many in the blogosphere subsequently concluded that Khan's move was driven by an inherent dislike of transgender people.

    Mr Khan later issued an apology on Twitter saying that, "I made a genuine mistake at the ESPYS calling @Caitlyn_Jenner Bruce was in regards to their sports image, as an Olympian. It's been brought to my attention that this was wrong regardless. Therefore I would like to apologise [sic] to the transgender community."

    social network, warning, internet, harassment, transgender, United Kingdom
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik