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The tide continues to turn bit-by-bit towards evidence-based claims and material reality.

The title is from a Twitter thread by biologist Emma Hilton, which links to a published letter calling out the censorship surrounding discussion of sex and gender identity in the sciences. The concise letter The reality of sex was published in the Irish Journal of Medical Science (letter archived here) on January 15, 2021.

The text reads as follows:

The reality of sex

Emma Hilton, Pam Thompson, Colin Wright & David Curtis

We write as medical and biological professionals who are increasingly concerned with how commercial and corporate interests of publishers are being allowed to unduly influence intellectual discourse, especially in relation to biological sex. We represent a variety of backgrounds, with interests ranging from male-lethal genetic disorders in humans to sex behaviours in invertebrates. Human sex is an observable, immutable, and important biological classification; it is a fundamental characteristic of our species, foundational to many biology disciplines, and a major differentiator in medical/health outcomes.

Public discourse around sex increasingly seeks to deny basic facts of human biology. One recent example has been the treatment of Suzanne Moore at The Guardian following her attempts to discuss sex-related issues (embedded link). This denialism is no longer confined to humanities departments and social media hashtags but has made inroads into mainstream culture, in part due to a highly sympathetic media environment. Of particular concern to us is the sight of respected scientific publications, such as Nature, now beginning to echo these popular trends. In a recent article discussing a research study of differential disease burden in male and female patients with cystic fibrosis, the following disclaimer was inserted: “Nature recognizes that sex and gender are not the same, and are neither fixed nor binary” [1]. The Chief Supplements Editor of Nature has confirmed that it is the journal’s policy to add such disclaimers (Herb Brody, personal communication).

We regard the claim that sex is neither fixed nor binary to be entirely without scientific merit—there are two sexes, male and female, and in humans, sex is immutable (disorders of sexual development are very rare and, in any event, do not result in any additional sexes). Such politically motivated policies and statements have no place in scientific journals. It is essential that impartiality be maintained in order to preserve public trust in science as a process dedicated to producing shared knowledge.

We call upon authors and editors to resist non-scientific pressures to suppress honest and accurate discussion of these matters, particularly in the field of medicine where diagnosis, prognosis and treatment can depend on a patient’s sex.

Emma Hilton's thread on Twitter adds a bit more information (archive here) but otherwise is quoting their letter.

The tide continues to turn bit-by-bit towards evidence-based claims and material reality. The title is from a Twitter thread by biologist Emma Hilton, which links to a published letter calling out the censorship surrounding discussion of sex and gender identity in the sciences. [The concise letter *The reality of sex*](https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11845-020-02464-4) was published in the Irish Journal of Medical Science [(letter archived here)](https://archive.vn/5fjPZ) on January 15, 2021. The text reads as follows: > #The reality of sex > > Emma Hilton, Pam Thompson, Colin Wright & David Curtis > > We write as medical and biological professionals who are increasingly concerned with how commercial and corporate interests of publishers are being allowed to unduly influence intellectual discourse, especially in relation to biological sex. We represent a variety of backgrounds, with interests ranging from male-lethal genetic disorders in humans to sex behaviours in invertebrates. Human sex is an observable, immutable, and important biological classification; it is a fundamental characteristic of our species, foundational to many biology disciplines, and a major differentiator in medical/health outcomes. > > Public discourse around sex increasingly seeks to deny basic facts of human biology. One recent example has been the treatment of Suzanne Moore at The Guardian following her attempts to discuss sex-related issues [(embedded link)](https://unherd.com/2020/11/why-i-had-to-leave-the-guardian/). This denialism is no longer confined to humanities departments and social media hashtags but has made inroads into mainstream culture, in part due to a highly sympathetic media environment. Of particular concern to us is the sight of respected scientific publications, such as *Nature*, now beginning to echo these popular trends. In a recent article discussing a research study of differential disease burden in male and female patients with cystic fibrosis, the following disclaimer was inserted: “*Nature* recognizes that sex and gender are not the same, and are neither fixed nor binary” [[1]](https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11845-020-02464-4#ref-CR1). The Chief Supplements Editor of *Nature* has confirmed that it is the journal’s policy to add such disclaimers (Herb Brody, personal communication). > > We regard the claim that sex is neither fixed nor binary to be entirely without scientific merit—there are two sexes, male and female, and in humans, sex is immutable (disorders of sexual development are very rare and, in any event, do not result in any additional sexes). Such politically motivated policies and statements have no place in scientific journals. It is essential that impartiality be maintained in order to preserve public trust in science as a process dedicated to producing shared knowledge. > > We call upon authors and editors to resist non-scientific pressures to suppress honest and accurate discussion of these matters, particularly in the field of medicine where diagnosis, prognosis and treatment can depend on a patient’s sex. [Emma Hilton's thread on Twitter](https://twitter.com/FondOfBeetles/status/1350039627428745216) adds a bit more information [(archive here)](https://archive.vn/8niR4) but otherwise is quoting their letter.

8 comments

[–] [Deleted] 30 points (+30|-0)

Thank goodness professionals are speaking up against the gendercorporation that don’t want to discuss or debate, rather ask the women play nice while they eat our lunch.

Are they part of Project Nettie?

[–] Les [OP] 18 points (+18|-0)

I don't think I've heard of Project Nettie until now. Apprently Emma Hilton is actually directly responsible for it! Thank you for mentioning it.

[–] [Deleted] 11 points (+11|-0)

That’s such a great science/evidence non-political project. Love the hat tip to historical woman of science. ♥️

[–] ActualWendy 5 points (+5|-0)

Thank you for link to Project Nettie. Until just now I didn't know that the sex chromosomes were discovered by Nettie Stevens. A woman.

[–] Listentowomen 4 points (+4|-0)

OMG: This letter, so concise and truthful, brings a great sigh of relief. Every time some modern heroine/hero stands up bravely to the great monied forces of the trans/g.i cult and speaks truth to power, just simply states a scientific fact, sex is binary and based in reality, all of us fighting for recognition of this fact and fighting to end the threat to women/children/lesbians from the cult's never ending demands, then I feel we come a little bit closer to ending this insanity. The struggle is long, but we no longer are alone and screaming into the wind. People are beginning to speak up and listen.

Most of the time we think we are few... actually we are a huge majority, it's just unfortunate that the minority is very loud.

[–] Srfthrowaway 2 points (+2|-0)

I am so happy to see this sanity is published. Maybe the tide is shifting.

[–] HellaDea -3 points (+0|-3)

Was the person with green eyes shadow a man or woman I said man... But idk