Some of you living in the UK may have seen a story doing the rounds last week about an ex-pat Brit who was up on a murder charge in Turkey for having killed his wife “after” discovering that she was trans. Though of course, they’ll never admit it, the whole point of this exercise is to encourage people to vent in comments about how killing the deceitful bitch was absolutely the right thing to do, and the poor guy should be let off. There’s nothing like pandering to bigotry for selling newspapers. However, you may have noticed the use of scare quotes above and suspect that there is more to this story than meets the eye. Jane Fae has been investigating. In case you can’t be bothered to click through, here’s a summary.
1. The story is not new. The murder happened in December 2010. So this is pretty clearly manufactured “news”.
2. No one in the UK media seems to have checked with the Turkish authorities to see if the deceased’s alleged transness was indeed a factor in the crime, or even true.
3. The primary evidence for the deceased being trans is an online comment by the murderer which was made in 2006 and in which he also claims to have purchased his wife.
So if we believe that comment then technically it is true that the murder took place “after” the murderer discovered his wife was trans. But that’s after by a period of 4 years, with the additional possibility that he knew she was trans when he “bought” her. As crimes of passion go, this is not terribly instantaneous.
And the point of all this? If this is how our newspapers report on stories about trans people, why would you believe anything else that they say?