Pauline Hanson’s Senate colleagues have slammed the One Nation leader after she called for the “rolling back” of transgender law reform.
Senator Hanson put forward legislation earlier this year she claimed is necessary to “balance” the curriculum and “prohibit the indoctrination of children” in schools.
She claims “biased” teachers are teaching students “skewed versions of history and science, and sexualised school programs” including “unsubstantiated human-induced climate change”, gender fluidity and “non-traditional sex”.
Experts criticised the bill as a very poorly-drafted stunt, however on Monday Hanson railed against both climate science and trans rights in a Senate speech.
“Gender fluidity theory is widely taught in schools, even though it is a medical and scientific fact that inheritance from your father of a Y chromosome makes you a biological male and inheritance from your father of an X chromosome makes you a biological female,” Hanson said.
“Most parents do not support the promotion of gender fluidity theory being taught in schools, and they are quite right because it is dangerous.
“Parents ought to have the right to challenge indoctrination when it occurs.”
Pauline Hanson then accused “preoccupied” teachers of “transgendering” their students.
“The preoccupation with gender identity among some teachers and in some schools is correlated with an increase in children identifying as transgender,” she said.
“[This] is why I say these educators are transgendering our children.”
She called for the repeal of Australian laws “where biological sex has been redefined to include chosen gender identity”.
“These policies provide a small number of transgender people with rights at the expense of the majority, particularly girls and women,” she said.
“In 2017, President Trump rolled back the transgender rights put in place by Obama. We should do the same.”
Queensland Labor Senator Nita Green, who is gay, said Hanson’s bill would “undermine evidence-based teaching and allow the teaching of fringe conspiracy theories” like climate denialism to children.
“In the middle of a recession, in the middle of the worst jobs crisis since the Depression, all they care about are these tired culture wars,” Green said.
“The bill is offensive to teachers, who, like other essential workers, have been working incredibly hard during this pandemic.”
Green also slammed Hanson for her “hurtful” comments about trans people just days after last week’s Wear it Purple Day. The national day aims to “show young LGBTIQ people they have a right to be proud of who they are.”
“It is about creating safe spaces in schools, universities, workplaces and public spaces to show young LGBTIQ people that they are seen and they are supported,” she said.
“In Australia, 75 per cent of LGBTI youth will suffer bullying because of their identity. Eighty per cent of those people will experience that bullying at school.
“These kids are vulnerable. I was one of those kids once, and now I am standing in the Senate to tell them this important message.
“They have every right to be proud of who they are. They have every right to feel safe and to feel supported.
“If you’re an LGBTIQ kid, it doesn’t just get better; it gets really awesome.”
Pauline Hanson schools bill ‘belongs in the bin’
Coalition Senator David Van said the government opposed Pauline Hanson’s Bill which would “do nothing” to support the education of children.
He said the bill demanded schools provide “a balanced presentation of opposing views” but that was ill-defined.
“What constitutes ‘balance’ is a subjective test and is awfully difficult to implement even as a legal standard, let alone as a teaching standard,” he said.
“The proposed amendments run a substantial risk of being subject to constitutional challenges.”
Greens Senator Mehreen Faruqi said Pauline Hanson’s legislation “belongs nowhere but in the bin”.
“It’s clear this push for so-called ‘balance’ is driven by her contempt for transgender people,” Faruqi said.
“This bill is nothing more than a publicity stunt. [It’s] a poorly considered attempt to bully teachers and curriculum developers into jamming the curriculum full of right-wing conspiracy theories.
“Teachers, working with educational experts, do a great job of supporting students, often working without the resources they need.
“They certainly don’t need One Nation’s meddling and bullying.”
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