Former AFL star Danielle Laidley is tackling Twitter trolls head-on

Former AFL star Danielle Laidley is tackling Twitter trolls head-on 2
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Danielle Laidley is continuing to proudly wave the transgender flag amid a torrent of ugly online abuse. 

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The former AFL footballer has warned trolls they risk defamation proceedings should they continue to plaster vile assertions about her on social media.

Laidley has only recently returned to social media after pulling her account in May last year when she was charged with stalking an ex-girlfriend.  

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Danielle Laidley spent years living in fear of who she really was. Now she has nothing to hide

Danielle Laidley spent years living in fear of who she really was. Now she has nothing to hide

Danielle Laidley can still kick a footy - in high heels - like a pro years after hanging up the footy boots

Danielle Laidley can still kick a footy – in high heels – like a pro years after hanging up the footy boots

Trolls have made cruel comments about Laidley since her return to social media in November

Trolls have made cruel comments about Laidley since her return to social media in November 

Laidley, who was a 1996 premiership player for the Kangaroos and then coached the AFL club between 2003 and 2009, returned to social media in November with a clear view of taking control of her brand and launching a new career as a creative consultant and public speaker. 

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In a nod to her proud history on the field, she has retained the number 7 on the back of her Instagram profile – her number while playing through the first phase of her life as Dean Laidley with the Kangaroos. 

While the public response to her recent appearance at North Melbourne has been overwhelmingly positive, Twitter trolls have wasted no time putting the boot in.   

Laidley was trolled the instant news of her appearance back at the club made national news. 

‘She is a he and his name is Dean,’ one person tweeted. ‘F**kin weirdo.’ 

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The derogatory tweet prompted Laidley to issue the author a warning that the tweet was allegedly defamatory. 

‘One chance, and one chance only, otherwise you can join the queue,’ Laidley responded along with a list of points outlining what constituted defamation on the platform. 

‘Out of the 4 points listed, I know you have committed at the very least 3.’

Laidley has made it clear she is no longer content to take hits from those that would denigrate her or her new ‘tribe’. 

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Last month Laidley hit out at Victoria Police after she was surreptitiously photographed and the photo was shared about again by members of the force.  

Laidley hits back at one Twitter troll

Laidley hits back at one Twitter troll 

Danielle Laidley and her partner Donna Leckie, who has been trapped in Victoria since Western Australia shut its borders

Danielle Laidley and her partner Donna Leckie, who has been trapped in Victoria since Western Australia shut its borders 

Award winning Herald Sun photographer Alex Copel sets up a shot with Danielle Laidley (left) during a recent photo shoot for that publication

Award winning Herald Sun photographer Alex Copel sets up a shot with Danielle Laidley (left) during a recent photo shoot for that publication 

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It had been another kick in the guts to Laidley after a police officer leaked her image while in custody during her initial arrest in May last year. 

That leak saw Laidley sue Victoria Police, with the matter still winding its way through through the Supreme Court of Victoria.

Other trolls have targetted Laidley over her desire to be with other women. 

Laidley recently stepped out with new partner Donna Leckie, who accompanied her to North Melbourne last month. 

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Leckie is an aged care specialist who had been Laidley’s childhood sweetheart growing up in Western Australia. 

‘What a disgrace – when footballers do black face you cancel them for racism but when men do woman face for sexual gratification you celebrate them,’ another troll tweeted. 

The tweet had come off the back of Laidley’s return to the Kangaroos, with a photo of her and current player Jack Ziebell ‘liked’ close to 1000 times. 

‘I will take the 950+ likes at the top of the story,’ Laidley responded. ‘Perhaps your  confused about gender dysphoria.’ 

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For the uneducated, gender dysphoria is described as a ‘clinically significant distress or impairment related to a strong desire to be of another gender, which may include desire to change primary and/or secondary sex characteristics.’ 

Laidley hit back when her transition was branded a ‘sexual fantasy’ by one troll and a ‘fetish’ by another. 

‘You think we go through this for fantasy. Obviously you know more than medical professionals. Be careful of bringing my family into your mischievous views,’ Laidley tweeted back.      

Laidley cops another spray of venom from a Twitter troll

Laidley cops another spray of venom from a Twitter troll

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Laidley has attempted to educate people who have attacked her online

Laidley has attempted to educate people who have attacked her online 

Danielle Laidley is back on social media and ready to take on the world after years of denying who she really was

Danielle Laidley is back on social media and ready to take on the world after years of denying who she really was 

Danielle Laidley (right) and her partner Donna Leckie were childhood sweethearts growing up in Western Australia

Danielle Laidley (right) and her partner Donna Leckie were childhood sweethearts growing up in Western Australia 

Danielle Laidley impressed with her footy skills while recovering in a rehab clinic last year

Danielle Laidley impressed with her footy skills while recovering in a rehab clinic last year 

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Laidley, who has officially changed her name to Danielle May, has made no secret she is in the process of writing a book about her life and is expected to commute back and forth to Western Australia with Leckie once borders re-open. 

Since being thrust back onto the big stage, Laidley has taken giant leaps to support others who are experiencing a taste of what she has endured. 

‘I hope to stop discrimination against younger transgender people and families of transgender people. Life without barriers,’ she wrote on Instagram. 

‘Don’t be ashamed of your story, it may just inspire someone else.’ 

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Daily Mail Australia revealed this month cruel stories about Laidley’s supposed ‘true self’ had been recycled in footy circles for decades. 

Sources traced them all the way back to the 1980s when Laidley was spotted at a popular Melbourne night spot enjoying herself with some transgender mates. 

Laidley had still been playing for the West Coast Eagles across the other side of the country and was instantly recognised in footy mad Melbourne. 

The story spread like wildfire, with a good spread of ‘mayo’ helping the story gain traction across her career. 

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Footy sources have told Daily Mail Australia Sheehan copped a decent spray from Laidley after he made his comments on Sam Newman’s podcast. 

Laidley declined to comment to Daily Mail Australia.  

Danielle Laidley has been chased about by photographers eager for a snap of her

Danielle Laidley has been chased about by photographers eager for a snap of her 

No longer afraid, Danielle Laidley is writing a book and plans to become a regular within media circles

No longer afraid, Danielle Laidley is writing a book and plans to become a regular within media circles 

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Danielle Laidley remains proud of her past, but is looking forward with her new life and career

Danielle Laidley remains proud of her past, but is looking forward with her new life and career 

Danielle Laidley returned to a hero's welcome when she returned to North Melbourne footy club with her partner Donna Leckie (far right) last month

Danielle Laidley returned to a hero’s welcome when she returned to North Melbourne footy club with her partner Donna Leckie (far right) last month 

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