Author Ian McEwan made comments about trans people and identities in a speech at the Royal Institution on 2 April 2 2016
A member of the audience asked him to clarify these remarks in a Q&A after the event
Remarks received a negative backlash across media outlets and social media
It’s extremely sad to hear such uninformed views from such a respected author.
'It’s extremely sad to hear such uninformed views from such a respected author. When people express views that are hurtful or dangerous, they should expect to be challenged and we’re pleased someone called him out. What’s confusing is that he admitted in his response that we are complex beings – yes we are. The complexity of gender identity extends beyond genitalia.
Trans people need and deserve acceptance and equality. This sort of commentary doesn’t just denigrate the trans experience, it denies its very existence, and that’s especially hurtful for a group of people who have spent their lives fighting to be heard and understood. It’s a bitter irony that he made these comments on the Trans Day of Visibility. It shows just how much work we have to do before everyone is accepted without exception.'