Dr Jordan Peterson, a Milo-esque figure, Tells Senate that Protecting Trans Folk Bad for Free Speach

Dr Jordan Peterson, a random asshole who makes nearly $200,000 CAD from his anti-trans Patreon page, somehow snuck into was invited to testify at a Senate hearing on Canada’s bill C-16. Peterson’s previous shenanigans include harassing students and publicly proclaiming gender identity to be a SJW conspiracy to enslave cis white men a cancer on free speech.

MRAs came out of the woodwork to applaud Peterson on the /r/Canada sub-reddit.

Bill C-16, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code, would add Gender Identity and Gender Expression to the Canadian Human Rights Act list of prohibited grounds of discrimination.

This bill is sorely needed in Canada, where TERFs and religious extremists have succeeded in blocking provincial governments from protecting trans and non-binary folk from harassment and discrimination.

Bill C-16 is currently in its Third Reading and is expected to pass into law before the legislative break in June.


Peterson’s disingenuous remarks to the Senate can be seen here:

I really don’t get why people are so upset about how someone else identifies. I mean, so long as they’re not obnoxious about it (and cis people can be obnoxious about it as well as trans).

A friend of mine sent me an article about the rape crisis centre TERFs protesting the bill. Having had occasion to use such services, I really don’t think being a cis woman is any guarantee you’ll be a good counsellor – and being trans is no guarantee you’ll be a bad one.


I wish I could like this comment more.

Another move I’d like to see – there was something a few years ago here in BC that a young trans-person and their lawyer trying to get gender removed from birth certificates. The lawyer pointed out that not too long ago “father’s occupation” was considered a necessary part of a birth certificate, too. Now, we’d be horrified if the government proposed putting it on, so why is gender necessary, either?

It was a pretty compelling argument for me. What statistical/data need is there to know how many girl babies and boy babies are born, as opposed to just babies?


I can think of a few. Sex-selective abortions. Tracking what happens to those babies in their education, career, whether or not they vote.

This is interesting, because I always thought the birth certificate listed one’s sex, not one’s gender identity. It’s not like you can ask the baby how they identify. All you can do is record what’s under the diapers.

Having said that, I don’t know of any birth certificates which list “intersex”, so there’s something which needs implementing. The other thing is to not use birth certificates, which again list one’s sex, as proof of gender.

ETA: stats on what % of the population are trans, what age they assert their gender identity… those sorts of things, which could help with planning support for trans people, are also harder with no sex noted on a birth certificate.


I mainly know Patreon as a place to support artists, either ones who just post art I like or ones for whom Patreon is essential life support. So what does a MRA do for money on Patreon?

I will produce two original lectures a week: one dealing with the psychological significance of Biblical stories; the other providing a more in-depth analysis of thinkers such as Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, Solzhenitsyn and Jung, with detours into the thinking of the other great philosophers and historians of the Western tradition.

The unspoken part here, which he elaborates on elsewhere, is that all of his lectures focus on the men’s rights messages in Bible stories and the work of Jung etc. He states that getting this message to men by posting videos online is “a revolution equivalent to the Gutenberg press.”


Jerk is jerk. Hubristic jerk is hubristic jerk. But at least he seems from what you say to realise that “men’s rights” as distinct from equality is something that belongs in the late Bronze Age.

And that is a really major issue in India and China, to name but two. Canada has large populations originating from both countries.


IMO it would be far better to collect these kinds of stats in anonymized ways.

Gender marked on even uncommonly accessed legal documents like a birth certificate is one way trans employees get outed to their employers. In most US states it is legal to fire someone simply for being transgender.

In the US, there is no consistent legal definition of gender, there is just gender as marked on various legal documents. The gender on a birth certificate is not typically static; in fact, most states require updating the birth certificate in order to update gender on more visible documents like the driver’s license.

This shouldn’t be too surprising because names on birth certificates can also be changed. Birth certificates have official legal usages that go beyond simply documenting a birth.

Most states require sex reassignment surgery in order to update gender on a birth certificate. This is troublesome in too many ways to get into here – ask me later :stuck_out_tongue:

Idaho, Kansas, Ohio, and Tennessee won’t update gender on a birth certificate under any circumstance. If you’re unlucky enough to have been born in one of those states, and living in one of the many states that requires updating the birth certificate before a driver’s license, you’re SOL as far as having a consistent public gender is concerned.

There’s probably hundreds of thousands of people who have inconsistent genders on different legal documents with no simple way to remedy that, and of course hundreds of thousands more who have no legal documents at all matching their socially presented gender.

This whole mess is likely to continue unless we get an Obergefell-style decision which makes getting a legal gender change no more difficult than a legal name change. I actually expect the Supreme Court to have to address this soon, considering the increasing culture war focus around these issues. Though I worry a lot about just what kind of judgment they might hand down at the present time, and how that might affect people for decades to come.


I’m not sure where Canada is on that, but the bill in question seeks to make such firings illegal. I’m trying to think of a situation where a birth certificate is important in an employment situation and can’t. The only time I have to show my birth certificate is to apply for a passport.

The whole “outing” thing is fraught, too. It simply shouldn’t be a big deal. There shouldn’t be anything to “out” – no bigger a deal than admitting you’re from Sarnia. “Outing” implies there’s a contradictory norm to adhere to.

Since gay marriage became legal in Canada, it’s been noticeable how much more of a non-issue it is to be gay. The Ontario premier is gay, but it only gets mentioned in that it’s just a bit of trivia. Nobody cares from a public political point of view.

It’s easy to compare Canada to the US, but this may be one issue where it’s more instructive to compare us to other countries who have already moved forward on this issue.


What an asshole.


I will stick to the U.S. situation here because that is what I know.

When you begin employment you need to give your employer a document proving authorization to work, the most common (for citizens) being either a social security card or a birth certificate. The birth certificate here doesn’t really operate as a record of the events of a birth, as some assume, instead it functions as a proof of citizenship by birth.

It shouldn’t be. But it is.

I lived in Calgary from 2005-2008 and things certainly didn’t immediately become OK for LGBT people after same-sex marriage passed. This sounds like wishful thinking to me. I find homelessness is a good proxy statistic for discrimination and parental rejection, and is close to home because so many of my trans friends have been through periods of homelessness and survival sex work. General stats are hard to find, but in 2013 half of Ottawa’s homeless were LGBTQ, or 23% of homeless Torontans in 2016.

There are certain bubbles where being trans is not as big of a deal as others. If you are trans in academia or certain tech companies in liberal cities, and you don’t date, it might not affect your life at all. To get there you need to be middle class and/or have above average intelligence – those spaces can be hard for people without the right resources to break into. Even if you arrive there, you can’t spend your life living in a bubble, and the bubbles are porous anyway. People have been held by immigration in foreign countries for having a mismatched gender marker, and immigrants facing all sorts of other culture shock as well might not yet have learned how to react when faced with a mismatch on the ID either.

For example, I personally know a trans woman who passed as cis for months until she was outed at her workplace by old documents; then, the Somali muslim immigrants she managed showed less respect for her orders, even outright mocking her a couple times. So now what are you going to do, fire a couple of even less-privileged people because of a document mix up? This is why intersectionality is a thing – but this particular conflict might have never arisen if gender markers had been absent, or easier to correct.

If the ethic is to just ignore the gender markers on IDs, then they aren’t serving the function of identification anyway, and might as well be removed.


Again, you’re confusing gender and sex. And I never said everything for LBTBQ is hunky-dory; only that there had been quite a lot of progress.

And yeah Calgary is in Canada, but Alberta is our version of the US South. It’s like judging the whole of the US by Alabama.

I’m trying to be nice about this, but as much as Canada has its own share of problems re: LGTBQ rights, it’s obvious the US is in a totally different place about that.

Might be worth starting a different thread if you want to talk about the US situation.


How do the situations I’m talking about not apply to Canada? Even Canada minus the inconvenient parts of Canada?

Regardless of your definitions, putting what you’re calling biological sex on IDs will have these effects.

  1. Canada is my country. There are parts I like more and parts I like less, but there are no inconvenient parts.

  2. I already tried to explain the employment rules are different here. How they’re worse in the States is not germane to a discussion about a Canadian bill before the Canadian parliament.

  3. The definitions for gender vs sex aren’t mine – they’re used widely and generally accepted. I’ve heard educational experts, HR professionals, and trans rights activists use them. I’m not inventing anything here.


May I interject?

People commonly conflate sex and gender or use Sex as a proxy for it. This is, for the time being, seemingly hardwired into society… Especially in the Canadian Midwest. This is why it is important to allow amending birth certificates and documents, especially passports, in order to protect.


I’m cool with amending, especially since, as you point out, people are confused about it. I’m not cool with no longer collecting the data just because it gets used incorrectly. Not collecting it may solve one problem, but it will definitely create others.