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November 26, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Referring to gender-confused individuals by their actual sex is now “hateful” conduct on par with racial slurs, according to new Twitter guidelines defining grounds for banning users from the platform.

The company’s “Hateful conduct policy” says Twitter’s mission is to “give everyone the power to create and share ideas and information, and to express their opinions and beliefs without barriers,” with special concern for “the voices of those who have been historically marginalized.” It also claims to believe “free expression is a human right,” and that public conversation “requires representation of a diverse range of perspectives.”

“We prohibit targeting individuals with repeated slurs, tropes or other content that intends to dehumanize, degrade or reinforce negative or harmful stereotypes about a protected category,” it now reads. “This includes targeted misgendering or deadnaming” of transgender people. Punishment ranges from being asked to remove “violating content” and a “period of time in read-only mode before [violators] can Tweet again,” to “permanent account suspension” for repeat violations.

“Deadnaming” refers to calling someone by his or her given legal name rather than a new opposite-sex name, such as Bruce “Caitlyn” Jenner or Bradley “Chelsea” Manning.

The change was officially made in October but is just now gaining notice in the media, The Blaze reports.

The homosexual news site PinkNews reports that pro-LGBT Twitter users are ecstatic about the news, but others are alarmed at the potential to stifle debate on transgenderism, and silencing users who assert the scientific consensus that biological sex is rooted in an individual’s chromosomes and reflected in hundreds of genetic characteristics.  

Earlier this month, Twitter cited Meghan Murphy, a Canadian feminist blogger who has criticized pro-trans efforts for their potential to undermine the rights of actual women, for “harassment” because she tweeted “men aren’t women” and “how are transwomen not men.” She protested “that a multi billion dollar company is censoring BASIC FACTS and silencing people who ask questions about this dogma,” and was subsequently banned.

“In light of my years of negative experiences trying to engage progressives on issues like pornography, prostitution, male violence, and now gender identity, I’ve unfortunately come to see many of them as cowardly, hypocritical, lacking in political and intellectual integrity, and disingenuous,” Murphy wrote in response.

“While of course there are leftists who are critical of the sex trade and trans activism,” she continued, “far too many of those who represent progressives (in North America, in particular) — politicians and leftist political parties, as well as activists and representatives of the labour movement — will not speak out about these issues nor will they defend the women being ripped to shreds for speaking out.”

Like Facebook, Twitter is the subject of numerous ongoing controversies about restricting conservative content and users, including LifeSiteNews.