Written evidence submitted by A Member of the Public [GSP0001]
How can you tackle sexism, harassment and violence against women in parliament if you aren't looking at the actual causes? There is a fashion for replacing sex with gender today but they do NOT mean the same thing anymore.
It is well known that 'gender' is considered a separate 'identity' today, which appears to refer to societal stereotypes. The issues that women face have nothing to do with how they "identify". If men want to harass female MPs then they are unlikely to stop harassing them on days they chose to identify as a man. In case you think that's ridiculous, check out Philip Bunce who identifies as a woman - but not everyday, just on some days.
Many years ago gender actually was just a synonym for sex but it no longer means that so if you replace 'sex' with 'gender' when researching this issue, you will exclude the actual causes and effective measures you can take to counter the problems. It hasn't been a synonym for sex for some years now.
"Sex has a biological basis, whereas gender is fundamentally a social expression. "
How can you tackle sexism - one of the avowed reasons you are doing this - if you're not looking at the issues caused by sex but those caused by 'gender'? Women have always been treated differently because they have to be the parent who physically carries the children and births them out of their bodies. Women, for biological reasons, tend to be the weaker sex physically. This has nothing to do with the way those biological women may view themselves. The suffragette women saw themselves as full humans who were entitled to the vote, that didn't affect the way that men saw women who to them were just wives and mothers and not entitled to the same rights as men - identification didn't affect their status one iota because they were biological women and treated on that basis.
What is the point on making measure to make better for women when all men have to do, to be included in those measures, is 'say' they are women too? One example: "Emilia Decaudin, ...introduced an amendment to the NY State Democratic Committee by-laws, in order to remove all sex-based language from party rules. The 20-year-old student, who identifies as a transwoman, ...successfully got the NY State Democratic Party to dismantle the “one male, one female” rule from Democratic State Committees—A rule which the women’s suffrage movement fought to put into place. The rule guaranteed females an equal seat at the Democratic table."