In an attempt to show its dedication to fighting transphobia, Oxfam released a cartoon that offended a large amount of other groups, including both white women and Asian men.
Self Proclaimed TERFs
Oxfam faces backlash from “gender critical” activists, including self-proclaimed ‘terfs,’ over an LGBT+ Pride advert depicting them negatively.
“Terf” stands for “Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist” and describes a group of feminists whose ideas are considered detrimental to trans rights.
The charity’s now-deleted tweet conveyed a message of equality for all gender identities, accompanied by a cartoon video highlighting the challenges faced by LGBTQIA+ individuals.
In the video, a cartoon of three angry figures overshadowing rainbow-coloured figures stirred controversy, particularly due to the depiction of a woman labeled ‘terf.’
Demonizing Older Women
Critics argue that the image demonised older women and implied hate towards them, leading to accusations that Oxfam supports hate groups.
Some, like TalkTV presenter Mike Graham, claim Oxfam veered away from its mission to help poverty-stricken nations, focusing instead on gender identity politics.
Social media users expressed their disappointment, labeling Oxfam’s portrayal of a middle-aged woman as a ‘terf’ as hateful, misogynistic, and against free speech.
In addition to accusations of misogyny, the advert also faced criticism for its depiction of an Asian man, with some calling it racist.
Oxfam addressed the controversy with the statement, “We fully support both an individual’s rights to hold their philosophical beliefs and a person’s right to have their identity respected, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and sex characteristics.“
The charity asserts that there was no intention to target any specific individual or group with the controversial slide, “In efforts to make an important point about the real harm caused by transphobia, we made a mistake.”
Oxfam admitted to making an error in conveying the harmful effects of transphobia and pledged to rectify the situation by editing the video, “We have therefore edited the video to remove the term terf and we are sorry for the offence it caused.”
Oxfam pledged its support for everyone’s right to free speech, “Oxfam believes that all people should be able to make decisions which affect their lives.”
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Jacob Lund