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Ireland has become an exporter of gender ideology

An architect of Irish trans policy has been elected Human Rights Commissioner of the Council of Europe

Artillery Row

Last week Ireland’s Tánaiste (deputy prime minister) Micheál Martin TD welcomed the election of Professor Michael O’Flaherty as Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, after a vote by the Council’s Parliamentary Assembly in Strasbourg.

A press release from the Department of Foreign Affairs listed some of Professor Michael O’Flaherty’s many achievements, the most recent being his role as director of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency.

But conspicuous by its absence was the role O’Flaherty played as rapporteur for the original 2006 Yogyakarta Principles (YP) which are marketed as the authoritative underpinning of gender identity ideology and which are having such an insidious and malign influence in many countries around the world as they affect women, children, lesbians and even gay men. This ideology attempts to usurp the reality of there being just two sexes with the harmful promotion of the unevidenced belief in a “gender identity”.  

In 2011 when O’Flaherty took over as human rights commissioner in Northern Ireland he was still an ordained priest  in the Diocese of Galway the Belfast Newsletter reported. The Irish Times noted that O’Flaherty was a “gay advocate” and that he was a “de facto ex-priest” because he was not yet formally laicised although the process was underway. 

The Irish Times said that Prof O’Flaherty was “chiefly responsible for drafting the Yogyakarta Principles on the application of international human rights law in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity.”  But although sexual orientation — whether one is heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual is well understood and accepted — the idea that one can have a “gender identity” which differs from one’s sex is completely unrelated especially in the suggestion that hormones and surgery may be needed to make the body conform to the mind’s belief.

Up to six weeks before Ireland’s gender recognition bill became law it required an endocrinologist or psychiatrist to provide a supporting statement that an applicant was “transitioning or has transitioned to the applicant’s preferred gender.”  Following a meeting of the Irish Cabinet on June 3 2015 it was announced this would no longer be the case and there would be no need for a supporting statement from a medical practitioner.

So, without any public consultation on this change Ireland ended up with a “self-id” Gender Recognition Act which was passed just six weeks later. All that’s required is that an individual fill out a simple form and have it witnessed by a person authorised to take statutory declarations, such as a solicitor. There was no time to hold a public consultation on such a momentous piece of social engineering legislation and women, the largest stakeholder which might be expected to have serious concerns about permitting men to “identify” as women, were not asked for their consent.

In the most extraordinary article penned for The Irish Times in February 2015, some five months earlier, O’Flaherty opined of the then bill that “Doctors need to be removed from the picture, as their involvement suggests that gender is a matter of biology” and “The second problem concerns the requirement that applicants have the intention of living in the preferred gender for the rest of their lives, and the related impossibility of applying for gender recognition more than once. These provisions are at odds with the lived experience of some people, whereby gender is a shifting identity over the course of their lives.” 

O’Flaherty also claimed:

The Bill’s provisions regarding children are a cause for concern. No possibility at all is provided for recognition of gender in the case of children under the age of 16. For children aged 16 to 18, a very complex regime is laid out, requiring the intervention of a court and of two doctors, as well as parental consent.

O’Flaherty wasn’t the only Irish person involved in the original YP which were followed in 2017 with the YP+10.  Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson was another of the signatories. Robert Wintemute, Professor of Human Rights Law at King’s College London also signed but has since changed his mind about certain aspects:

He says women’s rights were not considered during the meeting and that he should have challenged some aspects of the Principles. Admitting he ‘failed to consider’ that trans women still in possession of their male genitals would seek to access female-only spaces, Wintemute, who is gay, says: ‘A key factor in my change of opinion has been listening to women.’

Wintemute has since become a trustee of the LGB Alliance and believes that the legal “change of sex” has to come with conditions. 

The Yogyakarta Principles are widely cited as if they have legal clout e.g. by the Irish Office of the Inspector of Prisons. But as the Department of Foreign Affairs confirms, “…they are not an international treaty or otherwise binding on States.”

It’s clear the Principles go far further than simply providing an expert exposition of international human rights law as it currently applies”.

They contain some of the most far reaching demands which most people would be entirely unaware of but which we can see being steadily incorporated into domestic legislation around the world such as taking “all necessary legislative, administrative and other measures to fully respect and legally recognise each person’s self-defined gender identity.” (Principle 3). 

The later YP+10 (2017) want to see an end to the registration of the sex and gender in identity documents and state that “while sex or gender continues to be registered” add  Principle 31 that States shall: 

Ensure that a person’s criminal record, immigration status or other status is not used to prevent a change of name, legal sex or gender” and “Make available a multiplicity of gender marker options”.  States shall also, according to Principle 24: “Issue birth certificates for children upon birth that reflect the self-defined gender identity of the parents.

Canada, which has earned the dubious distinction of being known as Tranada, hosts ARC International, (Allied Rainbow Communities) a Canadian corporation in Nova Scotia. It claims that:

These Principles are an invaluable tool for activists working on sexual orientation and gender identity issues, and affirm binding international legal standards with which all States must comply.

 ARC says it has played a key role in the various phases of the Yogyakarta Principles:

We initiated the project, convened a coalition of NGOs to implement it,…track the ongoing use of the Principles, are participating in the development of an activists’ guide, and conduct ongoing training and support for organizations using the Principles.

Vast amounts of money are channelled through the Arcus Foundation and other philanthropic bodies to activist groups around the world. Arcus Foundation was founded in 2000 by Jon Stryker, heir to the Stryker medical device fortune. In 2008 Arcus gave its first large donation to ARC International, via the Tides Foundation. 

Arcus’ lengthy listing of grantees, including ILGA , the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association shows just how much money is being disbursed by one foundation alone. Meanwhile those with a DSD, a Difference in Sex Development, frequently point out that the I for “intersex” has been hijacked by the translobby, as of course have the L,G and B.  The mainstream media frequently publish the pronouncements of groups such as ILGA. 

Feminist academic Sheila Jeffreys pointed out a few years ago that

The YPs substitute gender, the male fetishistic understanding of what women are, for the term sex and thereby eliminate any protections for women as an oppressed class of persons based upon biological sex.

Speaking on a recent podcast O’Flaherty says we should be ashamed of ourselves in Europe regarding our response to asylum seekers with some drowning in the sea and the treatment of minorities such as Roma and Travellers:

We’ve been looking back a lot in Ireland for instance recently around things: ‘How did that happen? The industrial schools, the Magdalene Laundries? How could we let that happen under our noses?’

What will we say in future about how gender identity ideology was promoted throughout legislation and society resulting in lifelong harm to children, and women made fearful of men breaching our boundaries, colonising our spaces, sports, and even our name?

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