Author page: Beth Desmond

Imagining a World Parliament

Recently I found myself considering the possibility of a World Parliament – something like a cross between the European Parliament and the United Nations – whose members would be elected proportionally to the population of each country. What would the political makeup of such an assembly be? As far as I’m aware no-one has yet bothered to try and work it out,…

World Parliament Constituency Breakdown

Southern America (30) Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru Conservatives: 14 (BRA 12, ARG 1, PRU 1) Socialists: 6 (BRA 3, ARG 2, BOL 1) Nationalists: 5 (BRA 4, PRU 1) Liberals: 3 (ARG 3) Social Democrats: 2 (BRA 2) The strong socialist presence in South America is drowned out by the large number of Brazilian conservatives. Caribbean South America (10)…

Dan Didn’t Start The Fire

If you’ve held more than a passing interest in British vloggers in the past ten years, you’ve probably heard of Dan Howell. Since 2009, the now 27-year-old from Wokingham has been uploading videos to his YouTube channel,  formerly titled “danisnotonfire”, which now has over 6.5 million subscribers. Between 2013 and 2016 he also jointly presented a show on BBC Radio 1 with…

Sonic Fox and Trans Allyship

Much of the transphobic (and specifically transmisogynistic) rhetoric which is currently so prevalent, both on Twitter and the wider media, centres around the idea that trans women are inherently violent. It is claimed that trans women, along with cis men – even more so than cis men, some imply –are perpetrators of male violence. It is these claims which are frequently used…

The Spectator and Media Transphobia

The next time you hear transphobes claiming that their bigotry is born from a desire to “stand up for women”, simply point to their allies. It’s hard to imagine, say, Black Lives Matter running a joint event with UKIP, or Stonewall being bankrolled by the Coalition for Marriage. And yet so-called “feminists” are happy to join forces with those who actively work…

Trans Rights and Public Opinion

Polling organisation YouGov has just published the results of a survey conducted between the 16th and 17th December, concerning the public’s opinions on transgender people and trans rights. Some of the results are unsurprising. Labour voters, Lib Dems, Remainers and young people tend to support trans rights; Conservatives, Leavers and older people tend to oppose them. On the initial question – whether…

Trans rights are human rights

“The Work Outing”, possibly one of the best-known episodes of late-2000s sitcom The IT Crowd, holds a special place in the hearts of my housemates and me for two reasons. The first is Roy’s famous “I’m disabled!” line after he is found using the disabled toilets, which those of us with disabilities are often fond of quoting, and the second is the various excerpts from the fictional…