Benjamin Cohen, CEO of Pink News, announced on Twitter that he believes any transwomen who has visible facial hair – even those who are legally “female”- should be charged and prosecuted as sex offenders if they use female change rooms.
The surprise announcement took place in an exchange with NewStatesman editor Helen Lewis, in response to her op-ed in The Times titled “A Man Can’t Just Say He Has Turned Into A Woman”. Lewis wrote the piece addressing the feminist backlash against UK’s proposed “self identification” Gender Identity process, which would allow any man at the stroke of a pen to be legally regarded as “female” to access women’s change rooms, scholarships, hospital wards, sports competitions, abuse shelters, jail cells, etc.
You can read her piece here (paywall): https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/comment/a-man-can-t-just-say-he-has-turned-into-a-woman-m5lltcgv7
Benjamin Cohen, a gay anti-feminist activist who has used his platform to lobby against the rights of lesbians to hold female-only events on the grounds that they discriminate against the sexual rights of heterosexual males, initiated the exchange after publishing the following article on his Pink News site:
Cohen then tweeted at Helen Lewis from his @benjamincohen account, asking “Why do people like @helenlewis always turn trans rights into “someone with a beard exposing their penis in the women’s changing room?” He included a screen cap with the following quote from her article:
“What the government proposes is a radical rewriting of our understanding of identity: now it’s a question of an internal essence- a soul, if you will. Being a woman or a man is now entirely in your head. In this climate, who would challenge someone with a beard exposing their penis in a women’s changing room?
That’s why feminists have raised the alarm over the move to self-identification, along with some older trans people who fear that “trendsters” will erode the goodwill they have worked hard to aquire.”
Helen Lewis responded, “Hi Ben, as a man I don’t expect you to get how much women value single-sex spaces for safety reasons. But I would expect you to listen.”
Benjamin Cohen responded in no uncertain terms: he believes transwomen with visible facial hair should be prosecuted as sex offenders. He stated: “Your example” [of a male with facial hair disrobing in women’s change rooms] would still be indecent exposure, so why link it to trans rights?”
Legally female transwomen like prominent trans rights activists Danielle Muscato and Alex Drummond stand to be prosecuted for indecent exposure under Pink News CEO Benjamin Cohen’s views.
People hit back after Cohen’s statement.
Benjamin Cohen responded to comments by disappearing from Twitter. The title of his Pink News article was also changed: