Of the many issues there are with indulging men who were born men but who say they “identify” as a woman (and vice versa), one of the most disturbing is how statistics on violent crimes committed by men can be skewed in the wrong direction depending on how they are recorded, both on official crime logs and in media reporting.
Such could ultimately be the case in one disturbing incident out of Tallahassee, Florida after a man who says he identifies as a woman was arrested last week after police say he threw gasoline on a woman inside a Taco Bell and lit her on fire. Here’s how it was reported by the AP and CNN:
Authorities in Florida say a woman poured gasoline on another woman and set her on fire inside a Taco Bell restaurant.
News outlets report 32-year-old Mia Williams, who identifies as a woman, was arrested Thursday and charged with premeditated homicide, aggravated assault on an officer and resisting arrest with violence.
Police records say the attack occurred Wednesday night in Tallahassee. The victim was seriously injured and was still in the hospital as of Friday. It’s unclear if the victim was a customer or employee.
The Miami Herald notes that police think Williams may be a serial arsonist. Here’s how their report started out:
A Tallahassee woman may have gone on an arson spree Wednesday and Thursday, starting at a Taco Bell where a woman was set on fire, cops say.
On Wednesday, Mia Williams, a 32-year-old who was born male but identifies as female, walked into a Taco Bell, doused a woman with gasoline and then set her on fire, Tallahassee police said.
The rest of the Herald piece referred to Williams as “she” and “her.” This was their original headline:
Most media reports I read about this incident followed GLAAD guidelines on reporting on transgender crime suspects:
If a transgender person’s transgender status is irrelevant to the crime, do not make special note of it. Transgender status, like any other minority status, is only relevant to a crime story if it played a role in the crime itself.
Incorrect: Man in women’s clothes arrested for robbing Brooklyn gas station
Incorrect: Transgender woman arrested for robbing Brooklyn gas station
Correct: Woman arrested for robbing Brooklyn gas station
The only important piece of information in identifying a person’s gender is how they currently identify. Always use the gender and pronoun that corresponds with the way the accused person identifies. If how the person identifies is not known, ask the person, or use the pronoun consistent with how the individual lives publicly within the community, rather than the gender and pronoun that might be on law enforcement reports.
Incorrect: A man was arrested on Friday morning in his Brooklyn neighborhood while dressed as a woman.
Correct: A transgender woman was arrested on Friday morning in her Brooklyn neighborhood.
The woman Williams targeted was a Taco Bell employee, according to the probable cause affidavit. The restaurant had previously had problems with Williams. He was not supposed to return to the location (he head previously been issued a trespass warning) but returned anyway last Wednesday. He jumped over the counter and started turning lights on and off before the victim threw water on him. He fled the store and went to a gas station.
He then returned with a blue bottle which contained gasoline and threw it on the victim, setting her on fire.
The victim suffered third degree burns on 25% of her body, according to the report.
Williams is listed as a “black male” on the report.
If you believe progressive LGBTQ groups who insist on calling transgender persons by the gender with which they identify, the PD should have listed him as a woman on their report. It’s unclear what the PD’s guidelines are on recording the gender/sex of transgender crime suspects, or if there is any consistency nationwide as to how these situations are supposed to be handled, but in countries like Scotland, the issue has been raised already.
On the other hand, that media outlets here in the U.S. largely follow the GLAAD guidelines on reporting on these types of crimes is extremely troublesome. Male violence against females is male violence against females, not female violence against other females.
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 16+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –