‘Posie Parker’ — AKA Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull — is currently pulling her anti-transgender bandwagon through this sunburnt country: sweeping plains, ragged mountain ranges, drought and flooding rains, the lot. But rather than undertake, say, ‘A provocative journey through the dark history of the creation of white Australia, exposing the hidden genocide of the Aboriginal people’, Keen-Minshull is instead busy drumming up support for something called ‘femalism’. As I understand it, this involves reinvigorating a concept otherwise termed ‘biological sex essentialism’ (or something).
Keen-Minshull’s current publicity tour was preceded by similar ventures in the UK and US, which also witnessed protest. In Chapter 6, ‘Drag Queen Story Hour and the Anti-LGBT+ Backlash’, of Hope Not Hate’s State of Hate 2023: Rhetoric, Racism and Resentment report [PDF], they write:
In January 2023, at a demonstration in Newcastle, Lisa Morgan, a speaker at a rally organised by Keen referenced Adolf Hitler’s term “the big lie” and drew a parallel to those supporting trans rights today. Hitler’s use of the term helped spur on antisemitism in Germany. As the theme of transgender people’s rights will likely continue to be a salient topic in the mainstream media as well as among the far right, Keen is likely to have continued success and grow her platform.
Keen-Minshull’s tour kicked off in Sydney yesterday, was in Brisbane today, and carries on through Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Hobart and Canberra. In response, a number of different groups have organised protest activities:
• Tuesday, March 14 : PERTH – Fight the Right: protest the speaking tour of right-wing UK transphobe Kellie-Jay Keen (National Union of Students Queer/LGBTI, United Against Bigotry & Racism and Rainbow Rebellion WA)
• Thursday, March 16 : ADL: Protest Transphobia! Oppose anti-trans right wing bigot Kellie-Jay Keen (National Union of Students Queer/LGBTI, Rainbow Rights Adelaide and Adelaide Campaign Against Racism and Fascism)
• Saturday, March 18 : MELB – Fight the Right: protest the speaking tour of right-wing UK transphobe Kellie-Jay Keen, (National Union of Students Queer/LGBTI and Campaign Against Racism and Fascism)
• Tuesday, March 21 : Tasmania Supports the Trans and Gender Diverse Community (Equality Tasmania)
• Thursday, March 23 : CBR: Fight the Right: protest the speaking tour of right-wing UK transphobe Kellie-Jay Keen (National Union of Students Queer/LGBTI, ANU Women’s Department, ANU Queer Department, Campaign Against Racism and Fascism – Canberra, Equal Love Canberra)
Keen-Minshull is also planning on popping over to Aotearoa too.
See also : Why we need to protest transphobic hate speech, Nova Sobieralski, Green Left, March 8, 2023 | Why we need to protest Posie Parker, Jacqueline Blackburn, Red Flag, March 5, 2023.
In Sydney yesterday there was reportedly a ‘clash’ between Parker fans and those who are not — see : Protesters clash at anti-trans rally in Sydney (Isabel McMillan, news dot com dot au/NCA, March 11, 2023) and Protesters clash with anti-trans groups in Victoria Park (Elliot Lawry, Honi Soit, March 12, 2023) — but this would seem to have been confined to members of the two rallies (each comprising one or two hundred people) shouting at one another across police lines. Notably, today’s event in Brisbane attracted the participation of fellow grifters Monica Smit and Kirralie Smith (also present in Sydney) along with a number of (radical) feminist speakers, who addressed an audience of around one hundred. As in Sydney, a larger crowd gathered to express opposition.
Finally, as is the case with every other right-wing grifter, Keen-Minshull’s publicity tour has harnessed support from important elements of the tabloid and right-wing media, along with attention from various PHONys, Tories (most notably Katherine Deves) and of course Ordinary Mums & Dads™. Otherwise, the tour will presumably continue to attract positive interest from right-wing media and modest support from fans (along with opposition).
File Under : Unusual Alliance in Bathroom Battle
• A Room Of Their Own: How Anti-Trans Feminists Are Complicit in Christian Right Anti-Trans Advocacy, Heron Greenesmith, The Public Eye, July 14, 2020.
• How a fight over transgender rights derailed environmentalists in Nevada, Jael Holzman, Politico, February 6, 2022.
• Woman’s Place and Kellie-Jay Keen (aka Posie Parker), Woman’s Place UK, June 22, 2022.
• Collaboration between transphobic feminists and the far right — some facts, Ben Tausz, Workers’ Liberty, September 13, 2022.
• Policing Adult Human Females: Let Women Speak!, Heather Brunskell-Evans, Savage Minds, October 15, 2022 (‘High-profile left-wing feminists conclude that Let Women Speak is not fit for feminist purpose. I disagree.’).
• How Transphobia Built a Coalition of Eco-Radicals, White Nationalists and Right-Wing Think Tanks, It’s Going Down, December 1, 2022.
• Who is Posie Parker? The anti-trans founder of Standing for Women, Xander Elliards, The National, February 5, 2023.
• Inside the Secret Working Group That Helped Push Anti-Trans Laws Across the Country, Madison Pauly, Mother Jones, March 8, 2023.
There’s a second anti-fascist callout, Protest Transphobia, for Naarm / Melbourne 11am, Parliament Steps on Saturday 18th March https://twitter.com/TransQueerSoli/status/1634805087532089345