Oh bloody hell. Before you read this, just know that it contains some absolutely garbage opinions, okay? And the reading of said opinions might cause your blood pressure to spike / actual mental distress.

Still in?

Okay, here we go: the Daily Telegraph has today published a piece from Tim Blair in which he attacks the very nature of identity, arguing – somewhat incoherently – that Caitlyn Jenner, as a transgender women, is no different to Belle Gibson, who lied to everyone about having cancer.


Bruce Jenner is a 66-year-old man who has lately taken to wearing frocks and referring to himself as Caitlyn,” he writes, and honestly, it only gets worse from there.

Blair’s entire argument seems to be that if anyone and everyone can ‘get away’ with whatever identity they claim, regardless of basis in actual fact, then why are we even bothering to vilify Gibson? Surely she, as someone who “identifies as a cancer sufferer”, be only receiving of our praise for her bravery?

No, you giant bellend.

Blair brings up Rachel Dolezal, the American woman who was the subject of widespread vitriol (not to mention a few Halloween costumes) when it emerged that she was pretending to be black. But her entire story seems to escape Blair’s argument, because he instead uses her as another example of someone we should praise. (“Again, we are meant to salute her bravery.” ????? Literally nobody said this, Tim.)

He then equates this to light-skinned Aboriginal people “claiming full Aboriginality”, which he says is a “denial of reality”. Probably, in Blair’s world, you’re supposed to prove your race against a Bunning‘s colour card.

But here we get to the real kicker, his ‘trump card’, if you will, although if the US elections go the wrong way we’ll need to find another descriptor: the video that went viral in April where Joseph Backholm visited the University of Washington and asked students about his identity.

It’s seen as something of a ‘slam dunk’ for bigots (he’s executive director of the Family Policy Institute of Washington), because Backholm, a 175cm white guy, managed to get college kids to say he was a 195cm Chinese woman. But if you actually watch the video (already teaming with bias), the students are being led down a path of unrelated questions to arrive at that conclusion.

And finally, Blair gets to Gibson.

“If young white woman Gibson had claimed she was Aboriginal, Australians would be expected to believe her. If Gibson had taken to wearing tradesman’s apparel and wandering into men’s toilets, we would be asked to respect her gender choice.”

And then later:

“Why does Jenner win awards for courage while Gibson is damned as a fraud and pursued through the courts? Should we not heed the compassionate, caring words of that University of Washington student: “I feel like it’s not my place, as another human, to say someone is wrong or draw lines or boundaries”?

“It’s just plain discrimination, is what it is, and I urge Gibson to take legal action against those who deny her believed reality. She’d have every chance of winning. As an 80-year-old Nigerian elf lady, I know exactly what I’m talking about.”

Meanwhile, transgender people are *actually* discriminated against, and remain at a significantly higher risk of depression, anxiety, self-harm and suicide than heterosexual and cisgendered people. Up to 50% of trans people have attempted suicide at least once. 

But yeah, lets continue paying total fuck knuckles for opinions that actively work to encourage this kind of bigotry and mental ill-health. Sound good? Cool. BREAK.

Source / Photo: Daily Telegraph / Instagram.



Hey mates, if you are feeling suicidal / in crisis, please call Lifeline in 13 11 14. For 24/7 counselling, call BeyondBlue on 1300 22 46365. To find out more about mental health and LGBTI people, read this report.