#ThisNeverHappens happens again
In 2018, before BBC’s Woman’s Hour turned into People’s Hour, it interviewed trans activist, and Jolyon Maugham teacher, Alex Sharpe, who spent much of the interview saying that predictions that self ID could lead to dangerous men saying that they’re women for nefarious reasons were “utterly bogus and massively concocted. It's a campaign of fear, it's a moral panic that's been generated by gender critical feminists.”
This led to the #ThisNeverHappens hashtag, which gets an airing every time a story breaks of a man who said he’s a woman in order to commit a crime or as a defence after being caught committing a crime.
#ThisNeverHappens has happened again.
Michael Hari is a far-right terrorist with a history of violent behaviour.
He was convicted of child abduction in 2006 and in 2017, when a neighbour complained about his loose dogs, Hari allegedly attacked him and put a gun to his head. However, the trial has been postponed because of more pressing court matters, such as his alleged attempts to bomb an abortion clinic, and his role in the bombing of an Islamic Centre in Minnesota. Prosecutors have requested that he be sentenced to a full life term.
However, with sentencing now just a couple of weeks away, Michael has asked a judge to legally acknowledge that he is a woman called Emily Claire Hari, that ‘gender dysphoria fueled her “inner conflict” when she was convicted in the bombing’, that he should therefore receive no more than 30 years in jail, and he has ‘asked for an amended prison placement [that is, to be housed in a women’s jail] based on her transgender identity’.
‘“She strongly desired making a full transition but knew she would be ostracized from everyone and everything she knew,” Hari’s defense attorney, Shannon Elkins, wrote. “Thus, as she formed a ragtag group of freedom fighters or militia men and spoke of missions to Cuba and Venezuela, Ms. Hari secretly looked up ‘sex change,’ ‘transgender surgery,’ and ‘post-op transgender’ on the internet. Hari was living a double life.”’
You may think this is a shameful and desperate attempt by a very dangerous man to evade justice. But you probably don’t work for The Independent.
There have now been several examples of dangerous men saying they’re women in order to receive lesser prison sentences and/or to be housed in women’s jails.
Last year a judge in the UK jailed a man, who used a hammer to threaten a shop worker, to six months in jail. But one hour later he changed his mind and said, because the man identified as a woman, he should be immediately released.
And they exclude the analysis we ran this April and May, which found at least eight trials took place in the UK in those months of men who identify as women, and one of a man who identifies as non-binary. Seven of the nine defendants were convicted paedophiles, the other two were guilty of extreme violence and terrorism. Their judges expressed sympathy for at least three of them, due to their ‘gender identities’, and two even avoided jail because of this.
But don’t worry - #ThisNeverHappens.