The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) reportedly changed a victim’s statement in order to avoid the backlash that could have been sparked if they had allowed her to publicly misgender her rapist.
According to a report from the Times of London, the BBC published a story about a woman who claimed that she had been raped — but her alleged attacker was a transgender woman.
“The BBC changed the testimony of a rape victim after a debate over the pronouns of her transgender attacker,” The Times reported. “The woman referred to her alleged rapist as ‘him’ but insiders said that her words were changed to avoid ‘misgendering’ the abuser in an article on the corporation’s website.”
The report went on to say that throughout the statement, every incidence where the pronouns “he” or “him” had been used, the BBC altered the language to read “they” or “them” instead.
“A source said the quote was the subject of heated debate prior to publication. Some journalists argued that the quote should remain intact, while others said it should reflect the trans woman’s preferred she/her pronouns,” The Times’ report added.
“The woman reportedly told the BBC: ‘I was too young to argue and had been brainwashed by queer theory so he was a ‘woman’ even if every fiber of my being was screaming throughout, so I agreed to go home with him. He used physical force when I changed my mind upon seeing his penis and raped me,'” Mediate reported.
The same statement, as published by the BBC, reads: “[They] threatened to out me as a terf and risk my job if I refused to sleep with [them]. I was too young to argue and had been brainwashed by queer theory so [they were] a ‘woman’ even if every fiber of my being was screaming throughout so I agreed to go home with [them]. [They] used physical force when I changed my mind upon seeing [their] penis and raped me.”
The article in question was published by the BBC in November of 2021, and was titled “Get the L Out,” and it addressed the issues surrounding lesbians who felt as though they were being pressured to engage in relations with transgender women who were still biologically male.
“I’ve had someone saying they would rather kill me than Hitler,’ says 24-year-old Jennie*,” the BBC article read, noting that “Jennie” — whose real name was redacted to protect her identity — had been called everything from “transphobic” to “TERF” (Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist) — and had been openly threatened with violence.
“They said they would strangle me with a belt if they were in a room with me and Hitler. That was so bizarrely violent, just because I won’t have sex with trans women,” Jennie added.
Another woman who was interviewed for the piece — called “Chloe” — said that she felt coerced into penetrative sex with a trans woman who was still biologically male because she had been drinking and did not believe she had consented. But afterward, because she was afraid of how people would react to her complaining about it, she said nothing.
“The language at the time was very much ‘trans women are women, they are always women, lesbians should date them’. And I was like, that’s the reason I rejected this person. Does that make me bad? Am I not going to be allowed to be in the LGBT community anymore? Am I going to face repercussions for that instead?’ So I didn’t actually tell anyone,” she explained.