It’s a difficult debate in the feminist movement: How do we see influential second wave feminist figures like Germaine Greer whose transphobic comments have no place in the feminism of today?
I for one believe feminists like Greer belong in our history, and not in our present tense. Greer cannot be part of the intersectional third wave of feminism, and we shouldn’t want her to be.
Freedom of speech does not mean freedom of hate speech without protest, and Greer’s transphobic comments are a form of hate speech that we would not tolerate against any other minority group.
We cannot subscribe to a kind of feminism where Greer gets to choose who is and isn’t a woman, this is exactly the kind of imposition of identity we’re all supposed to be fighting against, and it’s hugely saddening that Greer’s ideas of sisterhood fall short at some of the most marginalised women she should be fighting for.
This is including those brave enough to form the #MeToo movement which she recently described as ‘whingeing’.
Transphobia and victim blaming are not feminism, which has to advocate for all women, and if this protest can help Germaine Greer and her supporters to realise this.