LIFE

Transgender Journo Cate McGregor Gives Powerful Speech About Margaret Court

She's warned against a "pile-on" of criticism toward the tennis star.

01/06/2017 8:15 PM AEST | Updated 01/06/2017 8:15 PM AEST

Australian transgender woman Cate McGregor has delivered a powerful speech against former tennis player Margaret Court's belief that there's a national plot using Nazi-style tactics to turn children homosexual.

Speaking on The Drum on Thursday, McGregor called Court's statement on a Christian radio program on Wednesday "gratuitous unsubstantiated nonsense", but said that "it is a strategic mistake for the LGBTI community to pile on to her" with calls to remove her name from Margaret Court Arena in Melbourne.

"Airbrushing a great player out of Australia's sporting history by removing her name from that arena, that would be a mistake," she said.

"I think it is a strategic mistake for the LGBTI community to pile on to her given her views, as repugnant as I find them, are clearly in accordance with the teachings of her faith and they are bona fidely held.

"I think she has absolutely overstepped any support from theology or religion in some of her discursive remarks about the families of transgender kids, which are just nonsense."

Court made national controversy on Wednesday after she told 20Twenty host Neil Johnson she believes "gay lobbyists" are influencing the minds of children to turn them into homosexuals and transgender people as part of a national "plot" which she likened to mind control that occurred in Nazi Germany under Hitler.

She also said she believes "gay lobbyists" and poor parenting strategies in Australia are responsible for confusing young children when it comes to understanding their gender.

The comments come as part of Court's strong public stance on marriage equality after she announced she will also be boycotting Qantas for the airline's support of gay marriage.

In response, McGregor said Court's comments come "in pretty poor taste" when they represent "the Australian Christian churches who have presided over systematic child abuse" as revealed in a Royal Commission in 2016.

Despite this, she said that the "pile-on" of criticism against Court in the past week has strategically helped her by victimising the 74-year-old pentecostal minister.

"I would have thought talking about the LGBTI community in respect of grooming children for sex is pretty poor taste coming from a Christian clergy woman in the current climate," she said.

"If anyone has forfeited their moral authority in this domain it has to be the Australian Christian churches who have presided over systematic child abuse that we have learned about recently through Royal Commissions.

"The free speech element is important though. I add weight to that because the pile-on last week strategically helped her, it gave prominence to her views and it rendered her a victim.

"This woman has to look at her conscience and live with her remarks and ask herself as a Christian when she examines her conscience, has she dealt with us lovingly? She says she loves homosexuals but not their sin."

Lastly, McGregor also took aim at the "strand of fundamentalist Christianity" targeting the LGBTI community, comparing it to kicking "low-hanging fruit".

"We are all sinners according to the teachings of both the Old and New Testaments, we are all broken in our humanity. Everyone of us grapples to live an authentic, decent life," she said.

"To think I arrived at my life decision without a process of agonising discernment is an offensive and gratuitously offensive thing to say to me when she has no experience of my life and my parental background.

"I respect this woman for her achievements. I oppose efforts to boycott the Australian Open or to rename that arena because it smacks of Stalinist airbrushing of someone's history. It is wrong. I would ask her to think heavily and examine her conscience about the impact these remarks have on a very small minority of Australians whose lives are difficult enough without this kind of stuff."

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