Stonewall and their extreme gender ideology allies across the West are struggling to put the Reformation into reverse gear, and we are now being dragged back into something akin to the religious totalitarianism of the medieval Church. The new fundamentalism mirrors the old one in primarily targeting the rights of women, of people who are same-sex sexually-oriented, and of children; and it parallels the Church of the Middle Ages in its vituperative and sprawling attack on freedom of speech and belief.
Let us take a closer look at the similarities between Stonewall (together with the culture and hot-heads it has helped to create) and the medieval Church, and examine how the modern rainbow Counter-Reformation is going. Stonewall is overtly complicit in most of the outrages listed below, and where it is, that is stated explicitly. Stonewall’s ideology has also encouraged the toxic culture that has led to vicious social media attacks on women, dishonest hit-pieces attacking gender-critical writers, and the attempt to ban gender-critical books. Indeed, Stonewall seems to have made little or no attempt to publicly condemn any of the latter, as any responsible charity certainly should.
Acts of Faith have made a comeback. St Anselm promoted the notion of “credo ut intelligam” (“I believe in order to understand”), and this re-emerges in The Latter-Day Gospel According to Stonewall. We are apparently to suspend all our critical and rational faculties, together with our interest in empirical evidence, and instead just … believe. It is our sacred duty to simply believe, without any evidence at all, that there is some untestable inner sense of being male or female that should prevail over anything as trivial as biological evidence and the clearly-established definitions of the words “male/female”, “man/woman”, “boy/girl” in our common public language.
We must believe, as an act of faith, that men can give birth, that women can have penises, and that biological men can be lesbians. We must believe that transwomen are women and transmen are men, and chant these phrases whenever doubts arise, or write them repeatedly in Twitter posts. We must have faith that there are multiple “genders”, when there is no evidence that any of them actually exist. If you express any doubts about these infallible doctrines, then you are guilty of “hate”: and you must believe that the definition of the word “hate” has not changed at all and that no gaslighting is taking place. St Anselm’s converse maxim, intellego ut credam (“I think so that I may believe”) is blatantly transphobic, of course, because it automatically permits doubts to be entertained in areas that are matters of faith and railroading, and where there must be “no debate”. Consideration of evidence and arguments before accepting a conclusion is so last-century, after all.
The sale of indulgences by the medieval Church also invites comparison with Stonewall’s blessed Diversity Champions Scheme. Indulgences are a well-established concept in the Catholic faith as a (normally non-pecuniary) penance paid for the remission of the consequences of sins. Under Pope Leo X, however, indulgences became commercialised, and people were paying sums of money to the Church in the hope of reducing the time they might have to spend in Purgatory: money that the Pope used to rebuild St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. Perhaps not such a far cry from Stonewall’s Diversity Champions Scheme, where the faithful pay annual subscriptions of £2,500 plus VAT in return for gender ideology micro-management and policy colonisation guidance on how to get included among the Supremely Righteous, otherwise known as Stonewall’s “prestigious” Workplace Equality Index of the top-100 Stonewall-compliant employers. Please note, however, that your Diversity Champions Scheme dosh, together with your lengthy written submission detailing your grovelling and obsequiously uncritical compliance with Stonewall’s credo, are by no means a guarantee of salvation and automatic inclusion in the Top-100. “For many are called, but few are chosen.” So much for the Wokeplace Inequality Index.
Our new Stonewall religion has its own version of transubstantiation, which declares that any biological man literally becomes a woman to the observer just by declaring he is a woman…
There is surely something masochistic about organisations paying a lobby group large sums of money in order to allow said group to influence them so completely that they become one of the 100 most subserviently-obedient members in the country. Do we not see in this the modern-day self-hating flagellant: yet another throwback to the self-mortification practised in the medieval Church? If you are going to mortify your rational mind by forcing it to believe extreme gender hogwash, why not also mortify your flesh while you are at it?
The coerced medieval belief in transubstantiation also revisits us today via Stonewall. Traditional Catholic teaching on this core doctrine maintains that, following the Eucharistic Prayer in Mass, the bread and wine literally become the body and blood of Christ, even though the outward characteristics and appearance of the bread and wine remain unchanged. The Church teaches that how this happens is a “mystery”. Expressing doubt in the transubstantiation could have got you declared a heretic in the Middle Ages and was a perilous thing. Our new Stonewall religion has its own version of transubstantiation, which declares that any biological man literally becomes a woman to the observer just by declaring he is a woman, with the same principle applying to any biological woman. Of course, how this could happen is a “mystery” as well, given that the individual concerned undergoes no change at all in his or her outward appearance or chromosomal constitution. Denying today’s gender transubstantiation will make you into a despised heretic, just as denying eucharistic transubstantiation did in the Middle Ages: which brings us on to the next parallel.
The persecution of heretics is what happens when you are singled out for punishment as a response to not believing what you are told you must believe. Heresy is treated as though it were a moral failing rather than a genuine good-faith response to the evidence. The degree of hatred and cruelty meted out to the heretics of the Middle Ages was unspeakable. Today’s gender heretics cannot believe the extreme gender teachings of Stonewall and similar groups. The modern response to heretics is for the faithful to accuse them of “hate” and “bigotry”, to try to whip up odium towards them on social media by means of misrepresentation and the spreading of half-truths and downright lies, and to try to get them cancelled from any means of making a living. At least heretics these days aren’t at risk of being burnt at the stake. However, having seen more than once an extreme gender activist express the wish that a gender-critical woman “die in a grease fire”, I suspect the threat of legal consequences to be the only barrier currently standing between the pathological hatred displayed by some gender zealots, and a distinctly medieval outcome.
Today, the Church of Gender Woo-Woo has managed to resurrect its own version of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum.
Today, the Church of Gender Woo-Woo has managed to resurrect its own version of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum. This “List of Prohibited Books” was set up by Pope Paul IV in 1559 and identified heretical works that people should not be permitted to read. Today’s Index lists those books that question extreme gender ideology, mostly written by feminist academics, intellectuals and activists: books that extreme gender activists think must be banished from the Earth. Hence the campaign to remove them from online and high street bookshops and from public libraries. Exposing people to arguments and evidence always threatens totalitarian ideologies. While gender extremists police their new Index, sections of the LGBT+ lobby and partner organisations campaign to include explicit sex “education” materials and hyper-sexualised, stereotype-promoting Drag Queen Story Time literature in public libraries and schools. The Hips on the Drag Queen Go Swish, Swish, Swish is still being sold on Amazon, advertised for a reading age of 4 to 8.
Without all the spineless careerists and woke useful idiots who show obeisance to the Church of Stonewall, zealously promoting its pernicious proselytisation programmes, Stonewall would certainly not have been able to cause the catastrophic social damage we already see, following its facilitation of the coup d’état that let “queer theory” and extreme gender ideology hijack our courageous and proud historical lesbian and gay rights movement. This was an action that boosted Stonewall’s cash registers after legal equality for LGB people had finally been achieved across most of the West. As a result, Stonewall is now helping to create the most homophobic, misogynistic and anti-child-safeguarding culture to emerge in the West over the last half-century. We LGB people are now even forced to fight for the right to assert our very identity as “same-sex attracted” rather than “same-gender attracted” people; for our right to decline sex with transgender-identified members of the opposite sex without being accused of “hate”; for the right of women and girls to keep male-bodied men and boys out of their protected spaces, where any non-trans-identified predator could claim he is trans as a way of accessing them; and to assert that children cannot consent to harmful medical procedures that will very likely lead to their sterilisation and the impairment of their capacity to enjoy sex later on as adults.
So it is that, in the 21st century, the oppressive ethos of the Inquisition has come to scourge us once again, hammering at our door with false claims and threats of sanction. The troublesome heretics, however, will see off this monster. We will do so because we love our children, we love our communities, we love our freedom, and we love the proclamation of truth over the dissemination of falsehoods. Those ghouls bearing the spirit of humankind’s darkest and most evil past, who come to necrotise all we love, will have a fight on their hands that they never imagined possible.
Gary Powell is a gay man and has been active in gay politics since 1980. He is the Research Fellow for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity at the Bow Group and the European Special Consultant to the Center for Bioethics and Culture.