Regular Zelo Street readers may remember the appalling slur doled out by the Sun’s grouchy contrarian pundit Rod Liddle to Labour’s then prospective Parliamentary candidate Emily Brothers, who is blind and transgendered, last December. Liddle, whose departure from the editor’s chair at the BBC Radio 4 Today programme came as a great relief to all those who wished it had happened earlier, was trying to be funny. And failing.
His exhibition of bigotry was as brief as it was straightforward: “Emily Brothers is hoping to become Labour’s first blind, transgendered MP. She’ll be standing at the next election in the constituency of Sutton and Cheam … Thing is though ... being blind, how did she know she was the wrong sex?” Laugh? I thought I’d never start. On Emily’s behalf, Trans Media Watch (TMW) complained about Liddle’s column.
[UPDATE 1330 hours: the press' handling of Trans issues does not seem to be improving over time. At the suggestion of a regular reader, Zelo Street readers are reminded of the role of the Daily Mail's tedious and unfunny churnalist Richard Littlejohn in the sad saga of trans schoolteacher Lucy Meadows, who ultimately took her own life.
The attitude of Rod Liddle and his paper suggests little has changed in their understanding of Trans issues - or, perhaps, that should be the understanding that is transmitted to readers]