Back in January, the U.K. government blocked highly controversial legislation in Scotland that would allow individuals to change their sex on their birth certificate from the age of 16 without any medical certification or official diagnosis of gender dysphoria.
Cates was an outspoken supporter of the U.K. government’s move to derail the contentious legislation, arguing that the bill would have made it “vastly easier” for predators to exploit loopholes in the bill to gain access to women and children.
In a debate in the House of Commons, she said: “We should not be asking how easy it is for someone who is uncomfortable with their sex to obtain a GRC; we should be asking how easy it is for a predator to get access to children. The bill would make it vastly easier for a predator to get access to children by changing their gender with an eye to exploiting loopholes to access children and women in particular.”
Cate’s contribution to the parliamentary debate was so impassioned that it prompted a strong response from a male MP who accused her of transphobia and bigotry, which prompted accusations of misogyny toward Cates from some quarters.
4) She has successfully lobbied the U.K. government to strengthen protections for children online.
Along with MP Sir Bill Cash, Cates successfully lobbied the U.K. government to amend its Online Safety Bill to include potential prison sentences for managers and directors of social media companies who knowingly allow harm to come to children on their platforms. In an article for the Daily Telegraph back in January, Cates explained:
“For children, the internet is a modern Wild West, a lawless and predatory environment where they daily encounter content intended to draw them into self-harm, addiction, and sexual abuse … If you think that tech bosses are going to wake up one morning and suddenly decide to prioritize child safety then I have a bridge to sell you. As regulations for other sectors show, only the threat of personal sanctions for senior managers will drive the significant culture change that is required in Big Tech boardrooms.”
5) She has called for a tax system that incentivizes women to have children.
Cates generated a lot of attention last month when she gave a speech at an event for under-35-year-olds in which she argued that Britain’s tax system penalizes parents. Her comments attracted so much wider discussion that she had to further clarify them, for the publication Politics Home, in which she wrote:
“Over the last few generations, we have privatized family life. Having children is now seen as a personal choice, a luxury, like buying a Porsche. You shouldn’t get one unless you can afford to maintain it … Having children and raising them well is the most significant contribution most of us can make to society. If we care about the success of our nation, we should be doing everything we can to encourage young people to have children and to support them through our tax system as they seek to do a good job of raising the next generation.”
Cates also argued that marriage “is the best institution that societies have developed for the successful raising of children” and pointed out that while marriage in high-income groups has remained high with divorce rates low but among low-income groups, marriage rates have collapsed.
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“Marriage has become a middle-class secret and as a political class we have failed to be honest about its advantages for children,” Cates wrote.