National broadsheet The Australian newspaper has come under fire over its “conservative,” “biased” and “boring” coverage of gender politics and transgender young people this week, as the publication continues to stoke outrage around the issue.
The criticisms come two weeks after The Australian‘s former editor-in-chief, David Armstrong, revealed that he was cancelling his subscription to the paper due to its overtly-conservative agenda.
Last week, former Courier-Mail columnist and ABC regular, Benjamin Law offered to donate $36 to anyone who cancelled their subscription with the newspaper to protest The Australian’s recent reporting on transgender issues.
“Despicable: the @Australian has now set up a dedicated page to demonise and spread misinformation about trans and gender-variant youth,” Law tweeted, “Promoting fringe anti-trans extremists while campaigning against medical experts and kids hospitals.”
Law was reacting to The Australian’s recently-created “Gender” section of the newspaper’s website, which consists almost entirely of negative coverage of trans and gender issues.
One recent story relied on the former deputy president of Fred Nile’s Christian Democratic Party, John Whitehall, as a source.
“Castrating children” was the phrase used by Whitehall to describe people who seek gender reassignment surgery. Gender reassignment surgery is not performed on people who are under 18 in Australia.
The article also claimed that Greens and Labor MPs want to legislate the “lie that birth sex can be changed.”
“Fears grow for trans kids – the trans medical model will ‘come under pressure’ as young adults ‘regret’ their decision,” another headline reads.
“When pick-a-gender meets the law – Guys, if you take a lend of someone else’s gender, they may ask for it back one day,” reads another.
The Australian has responded to ABC’s Media Watch, who called-out the publication on Monday for its discriminatory, “one-sided” coverage.
A statement from the editor of The Australian, John Lehmann, responding to Media Watch states, “The Australian seeks at all times to provide balance and to obtain diverse views.”
“We consider it correct to report legitimate questions raised by someone whose professional qualifications are in the same general domain as the practice under scrutiny – the health of children and adolescents.”