Mhairi Black can clearly see which way the wind is blowing. ‘I did always feel a wee bit uncomfortable,’ the SNP’s deputy leader at Westminster has said of the cult of personality around former first minister Nicola Sturgeon. ‘We shouldn’t be relying on one face or one person,’ Black told Times Radio, adding that she had always ‘had issues’ with the way Sturgeon ran the party, and that she ‘didn’t miss her’.
Isn’t it funny that Black felt so uncomfortable about such things but has only spoken out now? Whatever Black thinks about Sturgeon, she was a clear supporter of her ex-boss’s deeply bonkers and unpopular legislation that could have allowed men to invade women-only spaces and be placed in the women’s prison estate, simply for deciding that they are women.
Black has raged about ‘transphobic’ individuals who dare to suggest that trans women are not, in fact, women. She has also dismissed women who disagree with her views on transgender rights as ’50-year-old Karens’ and compared feminist gender campaigners to ‘white supremacists’. Such criticism is hard to take from someone who became an MP at the age of 20 and was an undergraduate when she was first elected in 2015. Perhaps she should think twice before vilifying those of us who fought for many of the rights she enjoys, including being able to marry her female partner.
Still, we won’t have to put up with Black’s utterances for long. In July, Black announced that she will stand down at the next election, describing Westminster as ‘one of the most unhealthy workplaces you could ever be in’ and ‘a toxic environment’. But Black’s own attacks on gender critical feminists like me have hardly helped to make things more amicable.