The Transgender Debate – sport, toilets and Debbie Hayton

Why do we segregate sport in the first place, between men’s sport and women’s sport?

Kate and Debbie Hayton

Kate is a trans person who contacted LBC following an interview I had given to Andrew Castle on his radio show on Sunday 17 July 2022. LBC swiftly organised an impromptu discussion between the two of us, moderated by Andrew Castle.

Kate (source: Twitter)
Debbie Hayton (source: Twitter)

Kate is a social media influencer; Debbie is a physics teacher, trade unionist and journalist. [source: Twitter] The discussion is transcribed without further comment or analysis.


Kate (K): I’m offended every time Debbie is on the radio, on the television, because she doesn’t represent my community and you always speak to her like she does. I wish you would speak to somebody who wasn’t right wing. At the end of the day, I’ve got bills to pay. I have to worry about the cost-of-living crisis. I have to worry about the rise of food [prices]. I have a job to do. I work full time in an office, well from home next week. These are issues that matter to me.

Andrew Castle (AC): Why do you think that the views that she has espoused are against you and why do your friends think that?

K: Because she props up this idea of this debate about trans people. She’s underneath, underpinning it as the token trans person who agrees with it. So she doesn’t speak for our community.

AC: Now listen, if I was to get her on the radio, would you talk to her?

K: Yes, sure. I would talk to her. She knows who I am.

AC: OK, do you mind, Kate; do you mind if I do that? I’ve got Debbie on the other line because we called her back.

K: Of course.

AC: All right, here’s Debbie. Debbie, did you hear what Kate was saying?

Debbie Hayton (DH): I heard some of it, but I just came in quite late on to that, Andrew.

AC: OK, Kate, have a word with Debbie.

K: OK, Debbie, why did you transition? You wear a T-shirt which says you’re a male on it, you go round telling everybody you’re male. What was the point? What did you transition for? You even said in the Guardian in 2018, I think, that you didn’t like living as a man, so you decided that you would be a more effeminate man. You don’t even speak for trans people. What are you doing, speaking for us? You’re not part of our community. You’ve said it yourself.

AC: OK, Kate, let’s get Debbie’s response to that.

DH: I feel like an apostate! I transitioned to make myself more comfortable with my body. I was uncomfortable with it. I didn’t like my body, so I transitioned medically and surgically and now I am comfortable with my body. That’s why I transitioned: to improve my life, and it improved it massively.

K: So why are you trying to make my life more difficult? All this idea of the sport thing that you keep going on about. Banning transwomen from professional sport is like banning unicorns from horse racing. There aren’t any professional transwomen. It’s a silly thing to be going on about. I’ve got bills to pay. You’re doing all these TV appearances and getting paid a lot of money. This is why you’re doing it, you’re on the grift like all of you. On the grift! Get a proper job; do your normal job …

AC (interrupts): Kate, hold on a second, let Debbie respond to a couple because you’re going at her a bit.

DH: Can I just ask Kate a question? Why do we segregate sport in the first place, between men’s sport and women’s sport? Why do we do that?

K: Patriarchy?

DH: No, we don’t. We do it because male bodies – like ours – and female bodies – like women’s – are different. We have different sporting categories [because] otherwise women wouldn’t win very much in open competition. That’s why we do it, and when we transition …

K (interrupts): OK, so where are all these professional transwomen in sports? Can you name any?

AC (interrupts): Well Kate, there are …

DH (interrupts): This is not relevant. The fact is it’s a point of principle.

K (interrupts): You’ve banned people you want, actually. Not relevant? [Laughs]

DH: I’m not banning anybody. We can compete with men, the same way we’ve always competed with men.

AC: Hold on. Kate, just on this one …

K (interrupts): What about poor Emily Bridges on the bicycle? That was so unfair what they did to her. You are celebrating bringing down another transwoman from her career. Why are you doing that?

DH: If you would let me speak, Kate, Emily can compete with men, with her own sex. That’s what we should be doing. We should be campaigning for separate record keeping for people whose testosterone has been lowered and, also, we should be campaigning for separate changing facilities to maintain our dignity. We shouldn’t be campaigning to invade the rights of another group which we don’t have any right over. This is …

K (interrupts): Honestly, the language like invade is just not needed in things like this. Transwomen are not invading spaces. We have access to spaces: we always do, and we always will. We’re not causing any problems. If you’re worried about cis men, do something about that! Don’t push it all down on transwomen. And also, Debbie, nobody seems to mention this much but you spent quite a lot of time on Russia Today, didn’t you? Are you suddenly going to forget about that past now that we are having issues with Russia? You were quite happy to take their money. I’ll tell you what, you do this to me. Give all the money you earned from Russia Today to Ukrainian charities …

AC (interrupts): Kate, let Debbie respond to some of these quite firm accusations. Debbie, if you’re comfortable talking about that.

DH: I will say that I am being attacked brutally here by someone who is throwing lots of accusations at me.

AC (interrupts): So you must respond. Kate, I’ll come back to you in a second. But Debbie, the floor is yours.

DH: Well, I’ve spoken a lot over the past four years. I am concerned about trans rights: I am concerned about maintaining the right of trans people like me to live our lives in society and be respected in society. As I am. But I also respect the rights of women. I do not think that we should be – and I did use that word deliberately – invading women’s spaces and invading women’s categories. We should be campaigning for our own spaces and our own categories. I’m concerned about children …

K (interrupts): What toilet do you use, Debbie when you go to the toilet. When you’re at school or wherever you teach or you go to these TV studios, which toilet do you go in?

DH: Well, going back to school where I teach, we’ve got male and female toilets and we have additional separate cubicles around the school which is what I use. It’s not difficult, Kate. We should be campaigning for separate sex …

K (interrupts) …

AC: Hold on Kate, hold on a second, Debbie first, then you, then I’m done.

DH: We should be campaigning for separate sex toilets but additional provision for those who don’t feel comfortable sharing with our own sex. It is so simple, Kate. What we should not be doing is trampling over the rights of women.

AC: Debbie, thank you very much indeed, and I really appreciate you coming back on and accepting the possibility of a conversation with Kate. Debbie, thank you. Kate, last word to you before I head to the news.

K: Yeah, segregation of toilets comes from the south of America when they used to segregate black people because they felt they had syphilis.

AC: Erm, um, OK??

Transcribed by Debbie Hayton

By Debbie Hayton

Physics teacher and trade unionist.

10 replies on “The Transgender Debate – sport, toilets and Debbie Hayton”

Dear Debbie, I listened to this with great interest because I like your posts (and you!) and you speak from a position of science and biology and do not mince your words. If Kate is unaware of the furor going on in female sports and with toilets etc, then they are living under a rock. However, I do not feel there is room for any kind of debate in Kate’s world. It is ‘my way or the highway.’ There are many trans people who just get on with their lives and it’s a pity the reasonable among them do not speak out, but I can see why. It takes a lot of courage to swim against the woke tide. Thank you for your support for biological women and for following the science, which is what govts, sporting bodies, school boards and others should be doing.

Liked by 1 person

Thank you, Fiona. I want to be fair to Kate so I added no further comment or analysis in the piece. But I do find it interesting how what I consider to be ad hominem attacks are see to be appropriate devices for a discussion on LBC. I transcribed the segment partly to make it more accessible, but also to learn from it. It was fascinating, as Mr Spock might have said.


Goodness me, different toilets for males and females comes from patriarchy and South African apartheid, and the right-wing Debbie is trying to ban unicorns from horse racing whilst working for Russia Today! Someone with a job and bills has finally put the record straight. Although, hang on, what job, “social media influencer”?


Well said Debbie, i can tell you’re a teacher used to having students throw alsorts of questions at you, many people wouldn’t be able to stay calm and give balanced replies about important issues when attacked. Its like the attacker knows they are wrong so go on the attack because they cannot think of a defence.

Its sad people may choose to ignore or may genuinely not understand historical events even though reputable resources such as encyclopedia brittania are easily accessible online. Many films exaggerate facts, sadly people believe them. I like to study and look for facts and truth, value learning, probably why i did my second BSc for fun of learning (maths with some physics).

Anyone who does research will see over 80 transwomen from all over the world since 1970s have impacted womens sports, winning titles meant for females not males, despite public outrage from men and women alike, it was allowed to continue. Proving it truely was an unfair advantage, these males were often in their 40s or 50s, way past professional athletes prime, yet able to beat females at their peak in their early 20s, ruining potential careers and dreams of many women who worked hard.

Eg Tennis has had many battle of sexes since 1888 where the men were given ridiculous handicaps, eg women start each game at 30 0! Yet the men still won. Many times the men were retired, double womans age who was womens number 1 in the world! This proves separation of tournaments by sex is more important than even by age or disability (some disabled would easily beat others and age depends on ability of the individual).

Point re Emily Bridges, still winning, doing well in male cycling races, is legally male, is legally male on British cycling web as is another transwoman who came second to Emily in an open event. If you let Emily, a legal male, then you have to allow every legal male to enter female sports. Cant people see this discrepancy? A male could contest his not being allowed to compete in female sports if transwomen are, saying its sex discrimination. So if Bridges can ride, so should Bradley Wiggins, Mark Cavendish, sir Chris Hoy…. women might as well go back to needlecraft and baking… is that what trans activists want? Methinks Yes!

Because cyclists win by hundreds of a second i cant find what place man equalled the time of the best gold medalist woman! The 10th place male was still over a second faster than the female gold medalist! Also cycling races for men are usually further than women so its hard to find direct comparison, but i found the below.
World records (cycling times in seconds)
Flying 200 Men 9.2 women 10.3
Flying 500 men 24.758 (chris Hoy) women 28.97
Cycling sprint winners men 9.1 women 10.1
Road trial Mens 234km 55.04.19 women 137km 30.13.49
average mph women 12.1 men 13.7

Liked by 1 person

Debbie, I have a huge amount of admiration for you for being so fair-minded — not just fair-minded, but logical and insightful. As to how much money you are getting paid, and for what, I don’t see how that is relevant to the conversation. Clearly, Kate is jealous because you are financially better off than she is.

I was sorry that a discussion of what’s happening to kids didn’t make it into the conversation. That is the area where trans people are doing the most harm, with the issue of trans women in women’s single-sex spaces coming second. On both topics, you are extraordinarily compassionate in your views.

Kate hasn’t figured out that unicorns don’t belong in horse races. To combine the two animals would destroy the level playing field for horses (although in the case of unicorns, I think they would be at a disadvantage because of their horns).

My question for Kate is, why do you want to be a woman so badly if you have so little respect for natural women? Kate is the kind of person who would presume to speak on behalf of natural women (and never see the irony in doing that). You have the respect for women to allow them to have their single-sex spaces without imposing yourself (although, if any trans woman deserves to be seen as a comrade by natural women, you are that person).

Liked by 1 person

I’m Kate’s twin sister. I’m a cis female. I’ve read the comments and listened to the LBC interview. I’d urge all of you to ask more questions before judging Kate based on a snapshot interview. She isn’t a social media influencer. She is a sister, an auntie, a daughter, a Great aunt, a working class woman. She also has a degree in photography and film. She’s highly intelligent and is full of compassion and kindness. She is one of the most generous and loving female I know.

She was very brave to go on to the radio and then be put on the spot to challenge you over your narrative. Yes, she asked you to explain yourself. She believes that you speak on behalf of her and the trans community inspite of not identifying as a trans female. She’s asking you to stop profiteering from the misery of others like her. She is trying to stay safe in this hostile world where trans people are in danger of being attacked. That’s what she meant when she said she ‘has bills to pay’. She’s not jealous of you at all. She’s challenging your motives to speak about the trans community.

I’m asking you to be more curious about Kate’s questions. You are a teacher and you’re using your status to indicate that you are to be trusted more than a social media influencer. Clever manipulation tactic. I’ve spent the last 20 years teaching; am I more important than anyone else? Of course not.

I’m surprised that you chose to steal a picture of Kate without asking permission and then calling her a ‘social media influencer’. She is so much more than that. Shame you haven’t taken this opportunity to learn.


Thanks for getting in touch, Victoria. Please do pass my regards on to Kate. When discussions are in-person we can have a chat afterwards; we can’t do that when we are both on phone lines.

Regarding the descriptions, I referred to both our Twitter bios. Here are the archived links:
If Kate wants me to add anything to ‘Social Media Influencer’, I would be happy to consider it.

The photos also came from Twitter, and I credited them both in the usual way. I did not add a surname because Kate did not seem to be using a surname on public Twitter. If Kate wouild like me to add it – so that the picture has full credit – then I would do just that.

My Twitter DMs are open if Kate would like to contact me that way.


Victoria, are you saying that you and Kate are fraternal twins — you a woman, and Kate a man before she transitioned?

As a trans woman, I think that Debbie has a right to speak on behalf of trans people, even if her point of view is not in the majority. The entire trans community seems to have signed on to a bunch of lies and pretenses, like “feeling like a woman makes me a real woman”. Debbie, being trans, but not being gullible, is the perfect person to dispute the nonsense.

How Debbie makes her money is irrelevant as far as this discussion is concerned.

It seems pretty clear that you are the more thoughtful of the two sisters. Kate’s comments were chaotic, and she attacked Debbie personally. In this instance, Kate did not represent her point of view very well — and she certainly didn’t give Debbie much of a chance to speak.

The trans community is doing a lot of harm in western societies. The worst thing they are doing is they have given children the idea that they can choose their gender, which is false. Kids are transitioning who do not have gender dysphoria, but for the wrong reasons, and those kids are being harmed. That’s why there are now tens of thousands of detransitioners in the world. Debbie is trying to bring sanity to this situation. Kate, on the other hand, just comes off as selfish and scatter-brained.


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