Kate Weatherly, a New Zealand transgender athlete in women’s downhill mountain biking, has spoken out against FINA’s (Fédération Internationale De Natation) new rules for trans inclusion in women’s events.

In a sense, Weatherly is right, there are bigger issues in women’s sport than the participation of a few transgender athletes.

In the New Zealand parliament last week there was a unanimous vote on a law change arising from a gender identity ideology which runs counter to, and cuts deeply into established knowledge that is foundational to all human societies across time – the knowledge that there are two sexes.

Colin Peacock – usually one of the most reliably discerning voices in New Zealand media – set sail last week on the stormy waters of the gender identity debate. After some curious navigational choices, the good ship Media Watch almost foundered on the dangerous reefs lying between the Scylla of confirmation bias, and the Charybdis of ideological forelock tugging.

We are pleased to hear New Zealand Department of Corrections state – after RNZ’s exposures of examples of grossly unacceptable practices in New Zealand’s prisons – that it aims to be a “world-leading centre of excellence for the management and care of women prisoners”. We trust that aim applies with equal force to all who are in prison.

On October 22, feminist writer Renee Gerlich finished publishing her seven volume Brief, Complete Herstory series, a female centred, colour illustrated history of the world from the Big Bang to the present day. If you have ever wanted a succinct, digestible overview of history, here it is!

In keeping with the natural evolution of viruses, Covid-19 has continually mutated, and this leads to ongoing uncertainties and inequalities. The research so far is highlighting that in this pandemic both biological sex differences, and socially constructed, gendered behaviours are significant factors that need to be clearly separated in much of the research.

Some of us have been worrying for years about the long term, adverse effects of what has become known as the Dutch Protocol. Abigail Shrier’s article about two prominent American advocates of the protocol who are stepping back from it, is timely in New Zealand given two pieces of legislation, currently in Select Committee, may well result in an increase in its application here.

The Multigendered are the living embodiment of the oppression intersection, and governments must ensure that we are able to manage the flow of traffic through our own complex, and shifting, gender intersections.

While we are told birth certificate laws are just about making it easy and less embarrassing for trans people to provide official identification that matches their internal feelings –  under gender identity ideology, it goes further than that – a change in identity now guarantees access to single sex spaces and services – regardless of the feelings of people born into that sex.

Jan Logie, Green MP, gave an excellent speech this week on income inequalities and those doing it tough in the Covid era. How does this impact on women, especially those living in the most precarious situations?

Almost four decades of neoliberalism has hit New Zealand beneficiaries hard, especially large numbers of solo mothers on benefits. They have become the most demonised of beneficiaries, as seen in the impact of sanctioning parents (96% of whom are women) for failing to name the other parent of their child.

Farah Palmer Cup and Olympic Women’s 7s

It’s incredible that the Government is happy to waste so much political capital on laws for which no cogent case has been made.

In the month that Women’s Liberation Aotearoa launches its new website, it seems fitting to recall those feminists who went before us.

Neo-liberalism has been in the driving seat for almost forty years.

The young women’s frustration with being abused, being unable to speak up, and seeing no consequences for male behaviour was clear from the signs, which read: “Our bodies are not your conversation starters”, “My assaulter got a second chance”, and “No more excuses, dismantle rape culture.”

At the Speak Up For Women event in Wellington on 15 July, a person made the claim that the place name “Whakatāne” commemorates a trans man. This whakaaro is a response to that claim. 

When we adults engage with young children, we often marvel at their inborn drive to make sense of themselves and world around them.

We may forgive McConnell’s youthful hubris but his apparent ignorance of history and of contemporary realities is harder to excuse.