The Scottish Transgender Alliance (STA) warned of "rising transphobia in the British media" today, following an article in Sunday's Observer by Julie Burchill.
The freelance columnist has come under fire for comments about "bedwetters in bad wigs" and "shemales" in an article penned in defence of fellow writer Suzanne Moore.
Ms Moore was reportedly hounded on Twitter after suggesting that women were expected to look like "a Brazilian transsexual."
STA said that many trans women live in fear that they will be harassed or abused just by walking down the street.
"Such comments being legitimised by the media make that fear all the more real," development worker Nathan Gale said.
Lib Dem minister Lynne Featherstone weighed into the debate and called for Ms Burchill and Observer editor John Mulholland to be sacked.
A Guardian News & Media spokeswoman said: "We are taking such reactions extremely seriously and we have asked our independent readers' editor to urgently investigate the matter."
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