The Liberal Premier of Victoria, Australia, has raised the trans flag along with the Progress Pride flag outside the offices of the Victorian government in solidarity with the transgender community after a women’s rights event in Melbourne was protested by trans-activists and neo-Nazis.
Premier Dan Andrews tweeted a video of the flag raising with a message assuring the transgender community that “we'll always respect you. And we'll always have your back.”
The decision to fly the trans flag outside the offices of state government came after British women’s rights campaigner Kellie-Jay Keen held a Let Women Speak event on the steps of the Victoria Parliament in Melbourne Saturday. The event was met with the usual counter-protest of trans rights activists and an additional protest of neo-Nazis clad all in black doing the Nazi salute.
Despite Keen and others who participated in the protest making it clear that they were in no way associated with the neo-Nazi group, who at one point appeared to be ushered through the police barrier and allowed to march onto the steps of parliament, Andrews lumped both groups under the banner of “anti-trans activists.”
“I won't share a photo because they simply don't deserve the attention. But yesterday, anti-trans activists gathered to spread hate. And on the steps of our Parliament, some of them performed a Nazi salute,” Andrews tweeted Saturday. “I wish it didn't have to be said, but clearly it does: Nazis aren't welcome. Not on Parliament's steps. Not anywhere. So to every trans Victorian, I say this: Our Government will always support you. And we'll always respect you. Because your rights are not negotiable.”
“How dare you conflate women standing up for female only spaces like prisons, DV shelters & rape crisis services with Nazis that only turned up because violent anti fascists were already there & YOUR POLICE FORCE let them in. We are not your political football,” responded Angie Jones, one of the Let Women Speak event organisers.
One feminist replied informing Andrews that the trans flag bearing stripes of blue, pink and white was designed by a male who “committed fetish burglaries, stealing women's underwear to masturbate into, and wrote erotic short stories, one of which involved an adult man marrying a girl who doesn't age.”
Researcher Gary Powell sarcastically compared Andrews to Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, whose support of trans rights resulted in her popularity plummeting.
“Dan Andrews doing that Nicola Sturgeon political manoeuvre that she discovered to be so popular with the electorate. This is a bogus middle-class ideology that has no traction with working-class families, who put the safety of our children & the safety of women first,” said Powell.