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TRANSGENDER WOMAN WINS RIGHT TO HAVE CONTACT CASE REVIEWED

Should a transgender model appointed to the role of LGBT adviser to a major political party be sacked for historical tweets about wanting to ‘gay bash’ a television star and calling a Twitter follower a ‘hairy barren lesbian’? The model had also previously been sacked by a cosmetics company for saying that “all white people are racist.”

All of this comes just shortly after the Court of Appeal has ordered the review of the case of an ultra-orthodox Jew who left her community to start a new life as a woman. A Judge had, 2 years earlier, ruled that she should not have any direct contact with her 5 children. Her particular community had never before experienced a transgender woman.

The 2 instances, for very different reasons, bring into stark relief the dichotomy between what we were and what we have become, and how much (if at all) should this result in a change in the way that we are treated? In the case of the model, let’s say for arguments sake,  that the ill-judged comments were Tweeted 7 or 8 years ago, and that she is now a paragon of society. It’s got to be right that the comments should not affect her ability to fulfil a public role now? In the case of the Court litigant, should her ‘new’ identity affect direct contact with her children, ‘who live in a very different world’? The woman, known in Court only as J, eloquently summed up the dilemma by saying she understood and ‘had sympathy’ with the community’s rejection of her, but that didn’t mean that she should be denied contact with her children. Surely, she’s got to be right about that?

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