Discussion on Transgenderism: What Is It All About?

I set off this transgender debate/discussion with an email regarding my post on Judge Brown-Jackson (judge-kentaji-brown-jackson-what’s-a-woman). I prefaced my email with the following statement: The trans agenda has exploded in the last ten years.  It is dangerous.  We must be aware and protect our children from this.  Once kids are indoctrinated, there is no line of defense left.

It’s a provocative statement, and I know folks don’t like being provoked. But is it true and what’s wrong with forcing others to contemplate such matters more fully? The interest in hot button cultural issues like transgenderism, abortion and the like, is not so keen as I wish; however, I am not sitting idly as our Republic and the principles it has stood for most of my life crumble. I may come across as dogmatic (my liberal relatives say “totally inflexible”), but such cultural issues will define the future of our nation. It is a duty to speak up.

Please take a stand and keep an open mind. That’s all I ask. You can help end the “normalization of delusion” or you can stand on the sidelines and throw up your hands as our Republic crumbles–and perhaps in not too many years. Don’t ignore the issue and don’t simply take pot shots (to “own” your opponent). Try to influence a few others, respectfully and civilly. Accept the blowback if it comes. The future will be better because of your efforts.

I received responses from several on both sides. I include their comments verbatim. My critics seem to care about transgender folks. They wonder why can’t I just let them do what they want. What’s it to me? Yet, I care also–about the individuals involved and about the impact to our culture.

Most do not fully realize the consequences of “gender affirmation”. Do mistakes in this choice matter? Certainly not everyone who goes down this path is correct. Are all the paths you chose always clear? We don’t let minors drink alcohol, buy a gun, or drive without restrictions for good reason. Yet folks today say adults should abdicate control and let minors (as well as other adults) make a life-changing decision on their own. We should simply support them without question? They are never wrong? Never confused? Never in a distressed state of mind when making their decision? Some in the public sphere even advocate gender affirmation for kids who still believe in Santa Claus (kids this age often believe whatever they are told). My critics, I think, haven’t considered the issue carefully enough. They often provide a reflexive response that we who disagree are bigots for not affirming these choices.

I have already written much about this topic; for earlier posts: https://seek-the-truth.com/category/trans/

My First Critic’s Concerns & My Response

Thanks for the response.  As always, I appreciate an opportunity to discuss important issues in an open forum.  I respect your comments and take them seriously, but obviously disagree.  My response to your comments are in blue and interspersed with yours. 

The “Transgender agenda”, as with the “Gay agenda”, is to have a society where people who don’t fit those binary boxes are allowed to live their lives based on the hand that nature dealt them without being condemned by ignorant conservatives for something they never had a choice in. 

Or maybe it is to escape the limitations they don’t like? Maybe they mistakenly believe gender transformation is the simple solution to solve many of their other problems? Kids especially don’t yet have the experience or mental capacity to make such momentous decisions. None of us should make life changing decisions without looking at pros and cons and without input from others we trust. I am not saying all trans folks are disappointed with their lives and looking for an escape, but no doubt it is true for many. Why not try gender change? That could finally be the answer. Or maybe not.

Gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation are not a matter of choice, they are a matter of biology. Biology is complicated and sometimes messy and the result doesn’t always fit neatly into binary boxes. That’s why conversion therapy and “praying away the gay” doesn’t actually work. 

Is it actually biology? My understanding is that colleges now teach that sex (male/female) is biological but that gender (how you identify) is your choice based on societal influences.  They often say gender is a spectrum, and some say there are an infinite number of genders.  There appears to be no general agreement on how many genders there are. This is all pretty new and changing, so you’re correct it doesn’t fit neatly into a box yet.  But that further demonstrates it’s not science. It makes very little sense actually.   Perhaps, you can understand why this would be disconcerting for many. 

Not sure who is advocating for “praying away the gay”.  I don’t look for simple solutions.   As I quoted another in a post “we need to walk with those on the journey”.  There have always been a few transgenders among us, but the numbers are exploding today.  Most of the people who today are identifying this way are caught up in a fad.  We are not doing what is best for them by patting them on the head, fulfilling a wish which they believe will end their disappointments, and attacking anyone who wants to just slow down the train, especially for minors.

Some people are born with normal genitalia that match there chromosomes but still fail to identify with the gender that their chromosomes and genitalia imply.  I don’t know why that is the case, but I’m pretty sure it isn’t just to piss off conservatives. 

There are also hermaphrodites who develop male and female genitalia and children who are born with undifferentiated genitalia.  Generally, the medical response to this has been to use sex assignment surgery to give them female genitalia and assign them as female (because it is easier). However, many of these “assigned” children grow up identifying as male.  As it turns out, sexual identity isn’t just a difference in genitalia, it involves differences in the brain as well.

Of course I’m not sure what he would make of Swyer syndrome. That’s where someone with XY chromosome physically develops as female. All fetuses start out as female. During development, male fetuses receive a dose of hormones from the mother that causes them to start developing males characteristics.  In the case of Swyer syndrome, a mutation causes the fetus to be insensitive to this signal and it continues to develop as female despite the Y chromosome.

Hermaphrodites are common among lower life forms: fish, earthworms, and flowering plants. I know of no examples among mammals other than the abnormalities you mention.

Exceptions are often raised, but generally not relevant to the larger issue.  The group you mention, those with Swyer syndrome, is exceptionally small, and they are not the ones who are advocating for trans issues.  In other words, this is a distraction.  These folks are not what this debate is about.  The real issue is folks deciding to change their gender based on their feelings (whether natural or not).  From my earlier post:

Of course, critics will say there are exceptions to the rule, and tell us we ignore science when we overlook exceptions. Some people do indeed have abnormal chromosome structures, some people are born with both male and female genitals, some women have masculine traits, and some men have feminine traits. All this is true. But do exceptions justify changing a definition? Don’t we say that humans walk on two legs and animals walk on four? We make these generalizations despite the fact some are born without legs or some lose their legs in accidents. Biologists, who Judge Brown-Jackson reminds us are a very special authority, define us as bipeds and our furry pets as quadrapeds despite the exceptions to those rules. We don’t qualify all the exceptions when speaking of a species general characteristics, so we also shouldn’t rewrite the meaning of man and woman based on rare exceptions.

The Transgender agenda”, as with the “Gay agenda”, is to have a society where people who don’t fit those binary boxes are allowed to live their lives based on the hand that nature dealt them without being condemned by ignorant conservatives for something  they never had a choice in.

This is the argument made ad infinitum.   I have written about a half dozen posts on trans issues and every single defense contends trans folks are discriminated against, condemned, hated, etc.  You yourself mentioned “ignorant conservatives” who condemn, “pathetic parents”, and “pissed off conservatives” who can’t handle reality. These charges are rarely true. However, this is a good way to win an argument: paint your opponents as narrow-minded bigots without compassion.  Everything such people say can be ignored. But the fact remains: gender change is being affirmed in such a casual manner that it is doing a disservice to those caught up in it.  If pointing that out is considered narrow minded bigotry, so be it.

In a post a few months back (https://seek-the-truth.com/2021/07/15/more-on-transgenderism-it-is-not-about-hate/), I analyzed the exact same argument from a Vice article which said those who are concerned about transgenderism are hateful people, and so should be ignored. It began with the following:

The National Review apparently believes that trans people are mentally ill and need to be “cured.” Maybe they should stop being such f—ing intolerant bigots?

It’s not a good way to start a debate, but I will set aside this one statement and keep an open mind. I am not an intolerant bigot myself, but I definitely want to hear why the author thinks people like me are intolerant bigots.

If you read my entire post analyzing this article, you will see that the opposition is not so simple minded and intolerant and has many legitimate concerns about this growing trend.

It isn’t a threat to your children.  If your children have normal gender identity and sexual orientation, learning about transgender and gay people isn’t going to make them  transgender or gay because being transgender or gay isn’t a product of learning; it’s a product of biology. The worst that might happen is they learn to not hate people who don’t fit neatly in the binary boxes (and that isn’t actually a bad thing). On the other hand, if they are transgender or gay, trying to force them into a binary box where they don’t fit is just going to make them miserable. It’s a pathetic excuse for a parent who would have their child live a lie because the parent can’t deal with the messy biological complexities of human gender identity and sexuality.

Yes, it is a threat.   Simply labeling their opponents as intolerant, hate-filled bigots isn’t enough to win the argument.  The new method today is to indoctrinate children. 

How about this? In 1994, then Senator Biden along with Senator Edward Kennedy, supported a bill which would ban sex education for grades K – 12.  The bill passed overwhelmingly.  https://thefederalist.com/2022/04/05/joe-bidens-reversal-on-sexual-exposure-for-kids-shows-just-how-extreme-the-democratic-party-has-become/ In 2022, Florida passed a bill which banned sex education for kids in grades K – 3, a less restrictive bill.  That bill was deemed the “Don’t Say Gay Bill”.  The bill does not contain the word “gay” or the phrase “don’t say gay” anywhere in it.  This was another canard. How times have changed. Why do you object to withholding what you define as “messy biological complexities of human gender identity and sexuality” from kids under ten years old?

You should want to know: what’s the real game? What’s the real goal? Our children are the goal. The government wants kids, the most impressionable, indoctrinated in its political ideology. They want this because they are beholden to teachers unions who now run the schools (maybe they will start caring about the kids when they begin paying dues, as one Union leader said). Many teachers and schools openly say they aren’t your kids; they belong to all of us. The schools want to teach them values, mainly liberal values. Increasingly parents are being excluded from objecting (the shocking truth about this in one of my earlier posts on the topic: https://seek-the-truth.com/2021/07/03/transgender-delusion/).

Don’t be fooled. The trans activists will tell you it takes a village to raise kids. Parents are the problem in their view. The village knows better apparently. They are more openly objecting to parents because they see parents are the ones who are keeping this new gender ideology from being propagated. Parents pushed back against this notion and threw out the Democrats in Virginia in 2021. They will do it again if not stopped. This is liberals biggest fear.

Kentaji Brown-Jackson might not be able to define a woman but, lucky for us, Madison Cawthorn can. It’s “XX chromosomes, no tallywhacker”.  Thank you Mr. Cawthorn.

I am not sure what Madison Cawthron said or did recently regarding women.  I do know that Maryland Governor Larry Hogan expressed his outrage at the Florida bill and then had his pants taken down when he admitted he hadn’t read it: https://thecapitolist.com/maryland-governor-doesnt-read-parental-rights-in-education-bill-lambasts-it-anyway/  There isn’t much to the bill’s wording, so I don’t know why Governor Hogan was spouting off about something that would have taken only a couple minutes to read.  Here’s what I had in my post regarding the Florida bill:  

We have seen so much outrage over this bill, but the bill itself is really weak sauce. The bill supports parental rights and restricts sexual education for kids in third grade and below. Ask yourself why kids in these grades need sexual education from their schools? How about schools teach reading, writing, and arithmetic? Let parents teach the rest. Parents should pass on values, not schools; that’s the real issue being debated. I would be fine if the bill prohibited any kind of sex education for kids through grade twelve, but as it stands it is only for the youngest of kids. Here is the heart of this bill:

So-Called-Don’t-Say-Gay-Bill (link to complete text)

You know politicians are desperate when they believe they can win only by lying about their own agenda. The stars at the Oscars were so “brave” to say the word “gay” ten times over, but that has nothing to do with the Florida bill. I don’t care if you use the word “gay”. I’ve used it several times in this post. Live your life as a gay person if you wish. I can’t stop you. I won’t try to dissuade you unless you want to hear my point of view.

When Americans are shown the actual text of the Florida bill it is supported overwhelmingly, including a majority of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents.

Another Critic Weighs In

My thoughts are again in Blue.   I look forward to your response and corrections to my mistaken views.

In your blog you happen to mention your childhood, aka “back in the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth”,  there was male and female, simple binary categories of gender.  You may also remember during that time there was no internet, and even if there were we didn’t have computers, no microwave oven, no cordless phone.  Have you recently tried watching any television shows that were popular when we were growing up?  I have, and if I can get beyond the laugh track that must tell viewers when shows are intended to be funny, I am boggled by how simplistic they are.  As much as these modern tools were intended to simplify our lives, which they have, life has become more complicated and our we have discovered things we thought were static sometimes aren’t.

The technology has certainly evolved rapidly, so it is easy to compare the technology of fifty or even a few years ago and know with certainty that we are so much more advance today than back then.  There is no doubt about this point.  However, this doesn’t extend to the realm of ideas quite so easily. Are today’s new ideas superior to the ideas of the past?  Have the ideas progressed as much as technology? How are we to compare the ideas of Aristotle with the ideas of today?  How about the ideas of Archimedes, Aquinas, Shakespeare, Locke, or other great thinkers of the past?  Are their ideas moot today?  I think not.  The ancients stack up extremely well compared to some of the so-called thinkers of today.  Folks like Rep. Occasio-Cortez, LeBron James, Joy Behar, and so many others have millions of followers on social media, but not much substance to offer.  That’s not to say we have no great thinkers today, but the folks that so many follow and look to for words of wisdom today should not be leading anyone.

You conclude the left’s reason behind supporting the LGBTQ+ community is simply for votes, full stop.  You are saying it isn’t possible the left and right have similar values when it comes to an individual having rights of self-determination or that parents’ have rights to determine how their children are raised and maybe this is a differentiator between the two.  The right certainly uses this as the arguments for COVID vaccines, Florida protecting parents’ rights with the law known as “Don’t Say Gay”, antiabortion laws protecting the “rights of the unborn”, critical race theory laws protecting parents’ rights, and there are probably a lot more examples of using those rights as the justification of laws.  The difference I see is the right restricts people who aren’t lockstep in their ideas.  Usually this is seen in authoritarian governments or theocracies, such as the Taliban, not in a democracy such as we have in the US.  It might be a good time to look at the right agenda, which as far as I can tell is to oppose the lefts agenda.

I’m saying the LGBTQ+ folks are getting a huge boost from politicians who view them as a voting block.  For the most part, those politicians do not care about the LGBTQ+ agenda. If they did, why wouldn’t they stand up to China when they ask that gay references be removed from Harry Potter movies? https://redstate.com/nick-arama/2022/04/13/hollywood-hypocrisy-we-say-gay-unless-china-doesnt-want-us-to-n549860.  Mine is certainly a cynical view, but it explains much of the problem.

I’m also not saying parents don’t have the right to raise their children with their own values, whether they agree with us or not.  You and I seem to agree on this point, at least. I believe many folks, including you, are sincere in wanting to do what is best for transgenders.  That view is not threatening to those on my side of the argument. However, my view is that this agenda itself is a great threat to America. The true agenda is not at all “inclusive”; it is “exclusive” of folks with differing opinions as should be clear from this discussion. During this conversation folks like me have been labeled “authoritarian”, “haters”, “ignorant” , “intolerant bigots”, and “pissed off”. The fact is we are as concerned about the trans individuals as you are.  If you read my posts on this topic, you will see we advocate to “walk the journey” with them.  If my opinion is not welcome, then I say live your life as you please. Just don’t demand my affirmation; don’t accuse me of hate, anger, etc. when I don’t agree. “Affirmation from all” is the authoritarian demand.

You can say the Florida bill is “restrictive” of schools, even authoritarian, but ask yourself why should schools have carte blanche to teach our kids anything about any topic they deem fit?  I don’t want sex education in schools.  Ignore my concerns, and my kids leave your school district.  The schools need limits and parents need input and insight into what is taught.  Many disagree with this notion; you may as well, but it’s not complex, and it is not hateful, angry, or authoritarian.

The Florida bill is actually weak tea.  It says anything taught to kids in grades  K-3 must be “age appropriate”.  It also protects the rights of parents.  Today, schools are attempting to withhold a child’s profession of transgenderism from parents.  Schools won’t give kids a Tylenol without parents permission, yet they claim they are standing up for the kids by withholding from parents discussions about gender identity, something that could impact the kid the rest of his/her life?  Think this through carefully.

Sex education and gender identity need not be part of school curriculum at all.  That’s the parents realm.  Schools should teach them reading, writing, math, history, language, arts, etc. They are not doing these basics well, so why add to that list?   Eliminating sex education for kids under 10 years old in Florida is a problem?  It’s authoritarian?   You’ll need to explain that view further. 

You say authoritarian measures are found more on the right than the left.  I disagree.   As I mentioned earlier, in 1994, Senator Joe Biden and Senator Edward Kennedy introduced a bill to limit sex ed, specifically to “assure that Federal funds are not used to promote or encourage sexual activity of any kind.” So if Florida’s law is authoritative, the 1994 law which passed the U.S. Congress overwhelmingly with Biden’s and Kennedy’s support is a mega whopping authoritarian bill.  Liberals like Biden and Kennedy are authoritarians too?   You may say they have progressed in 30 years.  I say they have regressed. We, including Biden, were closer to right in 1994 than today.

The Florida law known as “Don’t Say Gay” is simply a bad law.  It is true the law doesn’t have the word gay in it, but it is vague and will result in frivolous lawsuits against school districts which are so risk averse it will cause teachers to avoid what is an age-appropriate current event discussion to protect themselves and the district.  You have referenced this poll several times from the Floridian Press that supposedly shows how most Americans are for this legislation.  The article clearly points out a major problem.

The individuals were presented with the highly criticized portion of the legislation that earned HB 1557 the infamous title, “The Don’t Say Gay Bill.”  Respondents across racial and political lines appear to support the ban, and at any grade level beyond K-3 as well.

If you are an art teacher, teach art.  If you are an math teacher, teach math.  And so on.   Why does a teacher’s personal, non-school related, life need to be brought into the classroom at all?  I knew nothing about my teachers personal lives or political views when I went to school.  I didn’t need to.  Sure, we were curious at times, but it was none of our business.  It still isn’t. If something arises regarding the teacher’s sexual orientation or views on sex, etc. the teacher tells the kid to talk to his parents.  If the teacher knows his/her area of expertise and can teach it well, that’s all that really matters to me.  The kid doesn’t need to know about the teacher’s personal life and the teacher doesn’t need to share.   Values are the purview of parents, not the school (unless you choose to send your kids to a school, a parochial school for instance, which affirms your values).  However, today, too many schools are undermining the values of the parents.  That’s the goal of many schools and that’s what I object to.

What is the “major problem” you are referring to? I have missed your point on the “major problem” with the link I provided:

A new poll shows that 60% of Americans back the “Don’t Say Gay,” bill, especially the language regarding sexual orientation and gender identity being limited in K-3 classrooms. Among the political groups represented, 69% of Republicans, 62% of Democrats, and 57% of Independents. Parents seemed to support the bill at a higher rate than the national average (68%).

The result is the title of the article was clickbait and misleading.  I think the rest of this paragraph is obvious, but I’ll point out anyway and as anyone familiar with polling knows wording is very important.  The results of asking someone about Obamacare versus Affordable Care Act (ACA) will drastically change the results.  Most people are in favor of the ACA, but Obamacare is a socialist plot against America.  Similarly, calling the Florida legislation “Don’t Say Gay” versus HB1557 Parental Rights in Education law might get different reactions.  In this case cherry picking a particular component and then generalizing (the apples to oranges pattern).  This is like asking KBJ about the definition of woman.  Senator Blackburn was going to take her very specific context-sensitive response and generalize it in a way that would have distorted it in an unintended way.  KBJ saw that and correctly avoided the confrontation.  

Right, the phrasing of poll questions make all the difference. Florida’s law is labeled the “Don’t Say Gay Bill” and people make a judgment because of the label, a label that is a mischaracterization.  Give people the actual contents of the Florida  bill and they favor it by a 2-to-1 margin.  What am I missing here?   Also, unlike China’s government, Florida’s government allows people to say the word “gay” (see the link above).   Let’s have some consistency from critics here.

Judge Brown-Jackson avoided the confrontation because it would have disappointed her base for her to define “woman” and thereby undermine the house of cards on which the transgender movement relies (that gender identity is basically a sliding scale and that there are and should be no limits to defining your true sexual identity).   She is going to vote as a liberal.  The answer to the “What is a Woman” question is the proof (I explain this reasoning a bit further in my post: https://seek-the-truth.com/2022/04/08/judge-kentaji-brown-jackson-whats-a-woman/)

Here is another good link from Dr. Sebastian Gorka to further explain the problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0Zoupr_USQ.  During the last 20 years, our culture has destroyed the meaning of being a man.  This damages the development of so many boys and young men today.  Now, we are destroying the notion of what it means to be a woman.  This normalization of insanity and delusion is leading to the destruction of our republic.

What most Americans don’t want is sex education in schools and because of the way the law was written it can be interpreted as going way beyond sex ed and get into other areas such as gender.  Do you want schools not to be able to teach biology?  You’ve mentioned the removal of ladies and gentlemen.  Instead of saying husbands and wives would you be OK with them saying husbands and husbands, wives and wives, husbands and wives?  I say no to the suppression and yes to inclusion, but the result may end up with some crazy long introductions, sort of like your LGBTQ, ABCDEFG alphabet soup you might end up with something.  In that same vein think of Merry Christmas.  Why suppress it when you can be inclusive and wish people Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanzaa, Merry XYZ and other holidays during that time.  If someone doesn’t know what a celebration of some of the holidays look like then maybe they could reach out to a Temple, Mosque, Church, or other religious facility and learn about it and maybe participate in a celebration.  Maybe they’d get a better understanding of how other people celebrate.

By all means, teach biology.  The problem is that the new gender theory is not biological.  If I believed it were supported by genuine science, I would be for including it in the curriculum.  In my post on Judge Brown-Jackson, I recommended Senator Blackburn ask the judge one more question: What’s a gender?  I suggest that to expose there is no consistent answer; it depends on each individual’s beliefs, not biology. That’s not science.  Facts don’t care about your feelings.  The facts of biology say mammals can be divided into male and female.  Feelings and emotions say humans can also be divided along gender lines, and your gender depends on how you feel today.  That’s not biology.

The Disney greeting: “Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls” is concise and 100% inclusive.   Everyone falls into one of these four categories.  Of course, I realize not everyone agrees with that assessment.  Disney can change it to “Friends, Romans, and countrymen” or whatever else they like.  Any greeting could work. The problem is Disney is changing the greeting to accommodate the LGBTQ+ folks views on gender theory, which isn’t really based on science.  I do have a problem with that type of thinking because it hides more sinister motives.  I don’t want to suppress anything. I have no desire to control or manage Disney’s (or anyone else’s) speech. Their new greeting is not the problem.   I just call out nonsense when I see it.  Disney can do what they want, but I can also criticize their motivations and actions. 

Similarly, wish people Merry Christmas or Happy Hanukkah or whatever else you choose.  Or don’t say anything if all that bothers you.  I have no problem with any greeting as long as it is not in support of  some ritual I find problematic (child sacrifice or Satanic worship,  for example).  But if you are motivated by some silly reason then I reserve the right to criticize.  Don’t suppress me either. If I say nothing then I give tacit support to something I find problematic.

I heard today that a woman in Texas was arrested for murder over abortion and the charges are dropped.  Authorities are calling it a self-induced abortion.  Texas has restricted abortion; however, they explicitly exempt a woman from criminal homicide charge for aborting her pregnancy.  The recent 15-week law doesn’t apply to her because that law is enforced through civil litigation, and she was charged with a criminal offense.  The 15-week law also only applies to those who helped facilitate the abortion and not the person.  Could there be unintended consequences of the HB1557 Florida law?  Something that hurts people in the LGBTQ+ community or if there are legitimate reasons for the law that are not covered because it was written so vaguely that it can’t possibly be enforced.

There could be unintended consequences as there could be for any legislation.  I have no disagreement there.  What’s your point?  Don’t pass the Florida bill because there could an unintended, not-yet-defined, consequence?   It’s a straightforward, clearly worded bill in my estimation. It is just a watered down version of the 1994 bill President Biden supported long ago. 

Could there be unintended consequences to the following? A society which does not protect the most vulnerable is a society that is in deep trouble.

https://www.christianpost.com/voices/the-golden-state-has-become-the-gangrene-state.html

Under this proposed new legislation, mothers would not be held criminally responsible for actively or neglectfully killing their hours-old to weeks-old infants. And depending on how a court defines the word “perinatal,” that timeframe could be expanded up to a year or more. This bill would also protect anyone who aids or assists the mother in exercising her “right” to kill and, furthermore, allows her to sue any law enforcement department which arrests or charges her for hurting or killing the baby.

Fad or mental disorder?  Those aren’t the only options and as a matter of fact the American Psychiatric Association call the condition gender dysphoria, and it is neither an illness nor disorder. The diagnosis was created to help people with gender dysphoria get access to necessary health care and effective treatment. The term focuses on discomfort as the problem, rather than identity (from the Mayo Clinic website).

It was at one point considered a disorderhttps://www.hli.org/resources/dsm-5-gender-dysphoria/.  No matter how it is classified today, folks should proceed with caution.  Some may be confused about their condition.   Read Abagail Shrier on this topic.  She has studied and written about transgenderism extensively.  For example, she discusses a real problem for teenage girls who often become gender dysphoric after one in their friend group does. (I have more examples in prior posts as well: https://seek-the-truth.com/category/trans/)

You conclude that more people are coming out as non-binary because of influences on them and it looks like a fad, like bell bottom jeans or a particular hair style.  Has it occurred to you that there are more people coming out because it might be safer now?  In the military during and before “don’t ask, don’t tell”, if someone were outed, they could be discharged and lose their career.  It didn’t mean there were fewer gays in the military, it just meant they were closeted.  From a security perspective this would have put us as a country in a more vulnerable position.  After it was allowed to be openly gay in the military fewer people were open to blackmail making it safer.  I haven’t done a study, but it likely didn’t make them any less of a soldier to be out of the closet.  The only difference were the ones who couldn’t adjust to the new reality and the intolerant people who didn’t want gay people in the military by definition are homophobic and bigoted.

Yes, more are coming out because it is safer.  I accept that.  You should accept also that the numbers are growing so rapidly because so many are caught up in a trend.  Many who are not transgender think they are for a time, especially kids who don’t know enough about sexuality (or many other things) to decide.  Anyone who denies or questions a child’s profession of their identity is attacked–even the child’s parents.  Kids are often wrong or confused or just latching on to anything convenient. Proceed with extreme caution before moving forward with “gender affirmation” surgery or treatment.  This is life-changing and often irreversible.   As a parent, I can tell you my kids make many mistakes and often need to be corrected.  I do not humor or take as gospel every new pronouncement they make, even for things much less significant than a new gender.  They have their freedom, especially as they age, but I have my responsibility as a parent to guide them to the right choices. 

Also, don’t tell Hollywood you suggested it is safer to come out now because they think with people like me lurking about, it is still really unsafe. 

I’m not sure you specifically said it, but if not, you might expect the LGBTQ+ population to be similar in all generations and your statistics clearly show more Gen Z are self-identifying as LGBTQ+ than previous generations.  I don’t have evidence, but my hypothesis goes back to “simpler” times and is a matter of conceptualization.  In the beginning we believed there were heterosexuals and homosexuals – a simple binary approach to sexuality.  The older generations understand the binary approach and it looks like you said as much in your latest email, but your, and possibly my lack of understanding doesn’t make it wrong for people younger than us.  Each generation brings new understanding to the world.  Our generation doesn’t understand the online communities that are prevalent today, but that makes it different and not wrong.  In other words, old dogs, and learning new tricks.  Those that aren’t identifying as LGBTQ+ now aren’t likely to do it in the future.  As more people come to the modern understanding the numbers will go up a bit, but likely since the more recent generations are leading the change it will be distorted until the current older generations are gone.  This may be disappointing to you, but I don’t think it is a fad.

Yes, we continually have new ideas.  Some are good; some are garbage.  You seem to think ideas progress over time in the same way as technology.  I don’t accept that notion. The problem is human nature.  Human nature hasn’t changed in thousands of years.  We haven’t improved our human nature or become any smarter just because we have more technology and more access to information.  Many have tried and many believe we can fundamentally change our human nature.  They are wrong.  New ideas are just as easily regressive as progressive.  

I return to what G.K. Chesterson said about learning from prior generations.  The problem with today’s generation is they are under the mistaken impression they must rewrite the past and learn things anew for themselves.  The prevailing political liberal ideology is to tear down everything traditional and start over.  That’s where these crazy ideas all start.  Chesterton cautions against rejecting the ideas of our ancestors and says they should be changed only after very careful consideration.  His wisdom is still very relevant, but is being ignored today.

“Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking around.” — G.K. Chesterton, “The Ethics of Elfland,” Orthodoxy (1908).

Duty to Oppose

I waited three additional days without another response from my critics. I am sure my critics are busy. Perhaps they have said all they wanted already. Should I receive a response later, I will add more of their comments.

Instead, I share a note from a fellow parishioner on my side of the argument. The old saying is: no good deed goes unpunished. For raising concerns, he and I have been labeled “pathetic parents”, “ignorant conservatives”, “authoritarians”, “intolerant bigots”, and “pissed off conservatives” who can’t handle the truth. We don’t agree with these characterizations, but we accept the slings and arrows.

Do Catholics seek to stifle the freedom of expression of those who identify as transgender? Shouldn’t we just let them do to themselves as they please in the same way that we allow people to smoke or drink though these actions can also result in self-harm? What is our spiritual responsibility as Catholics regarding the LGBTQ+ movement? And what is our civic responsibility as Catholics? This spiritual duty is primary, but the civic duty flows from it and should not be ignored.

First, regarding our spiritual duty, we know as Catholics that God created us male and female. The Author of humanity has revealed to us the moral law as a means to our happiness and flourishing. When we depart from this law, we falter and fail. The world is not miserable right now because so many are attempting to follow the moral law and are failing, let alone that people are being forced to follow the moral law and are oppressed. No, the misery comes because we have by and large ignored the moral law and are merely reaping what we’ve sown.

How has God revealed the truth to us about our identities as male and female? First, He has revealed this through natural law which is available to all people. As Catholics, we have the deep teaching on this subject as specially revealed in the Bible and developed throughout Church history. Most recently, we have the masterful Theology of the Body, a series of teachings left for us by Pope St. John Paul the Great. But none of these great teachings is necessary for us to know the simple biological fact that we are a sexually dimorphic species: We are male and female. This is how we all got here. I realize that some people are born with chromosomal abnormalities such as XXY, Klinefelter Syndrome, but these cases are exceedingly rare and have nothing to do with the current craze of transgenderism (which is both a mental illness among the few and a fad among the many).

When the topic of transgenderism arises among faithful Catholics what I hear is not an attack on the confused individuals who identify as trans. Instead, I hear a deep concern for their spiritual and physical health. These souls have been misled by this craze and if we end up being the only people who don’t play along with their delusions then we will also end up being their only true friends. One of the spiritual works of mercy is to admonish sinners and so whether we like it or not and whether we shirk the duty or not, this is something Catholics should do out of love. However, the concern I hear among Catholics is primarily exhibited on behalf of the children caught in this craze who have limited culpability or who are lacking culpability entirely.

I’ve seen this myself as a middle school teacher. More and more kids every year are identifying as gay or trans or non-binary. I’m talking about 6th graders here (children who are at an age when many of us felt somewhat ill at ease in our bodies). Is this because of a sudden surge in children with actual gender dysphoria? Hardly. Instead, it is a fad being played out on social media and reinforced by traditional media, by corporations, and by politicians. And the adults conducting this social experiment are doing real harm to children. All Christians and all people of good will have a duty to admonish these adults and to do what we can to protect children from their influence. These children are not the victims of bullying by conservative Christians who want to suppress their freedom. We are, instead, the best allies they have against the malicious or confused adults who are trying to manipulate them. Christ said that it would be better to have a millstone tied around one’s neck than to lead one of these little ones to stumble. If this verse applies to anyone, it certainly applies to these social engineers.

This brings me to our civic duty as Catholics to stand up to this madness. To clarify, we’re not talking about kids bullying other kids for not adhering to traditional gender roles. Schools generally operate on a zero tolerance policy for any kind of bullying and have done so for at least the two decades that I’ve been a public school teacher. Bullying like this will probably continue on some level–kids being as they are–but what is far more likely in the current climate is that a kid who politely stands up for traditional gender roles and sexuality will be the one to be bullied, and bullied not just by other students but also by teachers, administrators, and guidance counselors.

So what is at stake? Adults are lying to children by encouraging them and enabling them in their delusions. Adults start these children on a path that often leads to hormone “therapy” and can lead to the mutilation of healthy breasts and genitals. This process sometimes takes place with the cooperation of parents, but just as often in defiance of parents. In some cases, dissenting parents have even lost custody of a child who identifies as trans. Look up Jeff Younger (https://seek-the-truth.com/2021/07/03/transgender-delusion/) for just one egregious example. These children are presenting themselves to adults as transgender and instead of the adults getting the kids the help that they need for what is clearly a psychological problem, they play along, calling the boy she if he wants or the girl he. Girls are taught how to “bind” their breasts in order to hide them. Boys are taught to “tuck” their genitals in order to hide them. Common sense would lead us to help these children become comfortable in their bodies, to reconcile their thoughts to reality. But common sense has become altogether uncommon, especially among our ruling elites.

The next phase will be puberty blocking agents and the injection of cross hormones which can have a lifelong impact. If a young person is unfortunate enough to be able to AFFORD surgery, he or she can be permanently mutilated, mastectomies for girls as young as 13, castration for minor boys, and “gender nullification” for those who identify as non-binary in which all genitalia are removed. This is what we care about and this is why we have a duty to oppose it.

The topic here is gender dysphoria, but there is a parallel affliction which can shed light on this one. Some people claim to suffer from a disorder which psychologists call body integrity dysphoria or body integrity identity disorder. In these cases, healthy people claim to be alienated from parts of their body and want to be set free of these parts by surgery. The parts they want removed vary from healthy limbs to healthy sense organs. Sadly, and despite the Hippocratic Oath to do no harm, there are surgeons out there who will provide these services. Most people, though, even people who would go along with the transgender craze, recognize that there is something horribly wrong about a person cutting off healthy legs or removing healthy eyes. Most people would still seek to dissuade others from such self harm. (As in the case of transgenderism, the persons so afflicted should be helped to feel comfortable in their bodies, to have their thoughts reconciled to reality.) Unfortunately, those of us willing to dissuade others from the self harm of transgenderism are labeled transphobe bigots. We are routinely censored. And, in this climate, we risk losing our jobs.

Abigail Shrier is a liberal journalist. Based on the success of some of her past exposes, parents, mostly liberals themselves, began to contact her to see if she would report what they saw as a kind of mania that had overtaken their children, especially their daughters, a trans craze. At first, Shrier looked for another journalist to pass the story to. When that didn’t pan out, she decided to take on the story herself. Her investigations eventually led to the book Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters. Numerous attempts have been made to censor this book from Amazon employees to Target execs to ACLU lawyers. They want to ban Shrier’s book as hate speech, a book that never would have been written were it not for the love of parents for their children.

Oppression and totalitarianism do surround the transgender issue, but it is average citizens who are the victims whether conservatives or classical liberals like Shrier. Teachers around the country are beginning to lose their jobs for “misgendering” students, that is to say, for correctly gendering students, for telling the truth. The same could happen to me and there are few if any protections for freedom of conscience for those who refuse to play along with the current regime of lies. Women’s spaces such as bathrooms, locker rooms, and swim meets have been invaded by confused or predatory men. In Loudoun County, Virginia, a male student identifying as trans followed a female student into the girls’ bathroom where he violently raped her. This incident was covered up by school administrators and school board members. They moved the rapist to another school to protect HIM and there he committed another sexual assault. This story broke the news thanks to the Daily Wire. (https://www.dailywire.com/news/loudoun-county-schools-tried-to-conceal-sexual-assault-against-daughter-in-bathroom-father-says). If it had been up to the mainstream news, none of us would know anything about it.

This is nothing like allowing adults to smoke or drink and harm their bodies as they so choose. This is about the media and Big Tech and Hollywood and the Academy and government and corporations pushing an ideology that is harmful to all, especially children, while forcing adults to play along. If we refuse, we can be censored or canceled, we can lose our jobs, we can even lose custody of our children. But we must refuse. We have a duty as Catholics and as good citizens to stand up to their lies and speak out against them every chance we get.

My Closing Thoughts

Along with Abagail Shrier, Father Mike Schmitz is a good source of information on this topic.  He is the one who proposes we “walk with them on the journey”, clearly not a message of hate, anger, ignorance, or apathy.  The Vatican has also written extensively on this topic.

Male and Female He Created Them: Towards a Path of Dialogue on the Question of Gender Theory in Education,” 

The Vatican Draws a Line on Gender, and Transgender Catholics Push Back | Religion & Politics (religionandpolitics.org)

Fr. Mike Schmitz Tackles the Transgender Question In This Helpful Video | (churchpop.com)

Scott Newgent, a trans person (Scott transitioned from female to male) recently wrote an expose on what the trans life is like for him.  Scott’s piece clearly indicates the choice should be made with great trepidation. He makes some of the same points as I and my fellow parishioner do. Forget What Gender Activists Tell You. Here’s What Medical Transition Looks Like (quillette.com).  The common response from liberals is the recommendations and thoughts of the one experiencing the life are the most genuine.  I ask my liberal friends: what do you think of Scott’s thoughts? 

Blair White is another outspoken trans person who discusses the trans condition.  Blair warns others not to follow his path (Blair was originally male and transitioned to female) unless absolutely certain and only after reaching adulthood.  What is happening today is a fad that many, who are unhappy with their current life and problems, are following in order to find a solution to those problems. 

Why are Blair and Scott urging caution and slow steps while so many others today are for pushing kids into the trans lifestyle based on their own professions alone?

More choices does not mean you are more free; more choices simply means more bad choices are available. Christianity is not just one more equally valid choice among so many others, as our media purports.  It is the choice that will free our kids from many of these destructive choices facing them.  As a Catholic, I believe Christianity in general, Catholicism in particular, must stand above all the other choices or our culture is doomed. Please take a stand on this issue and make your voice heard as well. The Vatican paper referenced above makes the following point:

Human identity is consigned to the individual’s choice, which can also change in time. These ideas are the expression of a widespread way of thinking and acting in today’s culture that confuses “genuine freedom with the idea that each individual can act arbitrarily as if there were no truths, values and principles to provide guidance, and everything were possible and permissible”

Our different understandings of “freedom” is a contemporary problem. It seems that word has surfaced multiples time during this discussion. I wrote about the meaning of freedom last year because it is important to find a common understanding and debunk some of the phony ideas of freedom. My identity might be as an alcoholic, but does living out such an identity make me more or less free?

One of the more disturbing aspects of contemporary debate today is the lack of appreciation for freedom. People enjoy their own freedom for sure, but they don’t like when others have freedom: the freedom to criticize, the freedom to disagree, the freedom to offend, the freedom to prove you wrong, the freedom to to defeat your ideas. It is all too much to bear. Continue reading “What is Freedom?”

Schools are a problem when they undermine parental values. Instead, schools should complement parental values. This is why we sent our kids to parochial school for eight years. This is why we don’t want our public schools teaching values inconsistent with our beliefs. The Vatican paper supports this notion with the following:

In the light of all of this, the family must not be left to face the challenges of educating the young on its own. The Church, for its part, continues to support families and young people within communities that are open and welcoming. Schools and local communities are called, in particular, to carry out an important mission here, although they do not
substitute the role of parents but complement it.

Across this educational alliance, pedagogical activity should be informed by the principle of subsidiarity: “All other participants in the process of education are only able to carry out their responsibilities in the name of the parents, with their consent and, to a certain degree, with their authorization

Steven Crowder has also talked extensively about the very high rates of suicide among trans which is much higher than the rest of the population. Gender surgery does not reduce this problem. Perhaps a different solution might help reduce the rate? https://www.louderwithcrowder.com/high-transgender-suicide-rates-due-to-bathrooms.

Our kids are always the last line of defense for our culture and we must keep them from being immersed in these values.  The polls show that vast inroads have already been made.   

A Politician’s Closing Thoughts

Is the person in the following clip genuine? About many issues, I think not. About this one, perhaps she is. Who knows for sure?

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2022/04/20/wh_press_secretary_jen_psaki_gets_emotional_republican_culture_warriors_are_using_vulnerable_kids_as_a_wedge_issue.html

Whether she is acting genuinely or not, Psaki’s reaction underscores my point that our opposition relies on emotional appeals. This is not an argument of science and logic. My critics say it is biology, but they haven’t backed their claims with any actual biological data; it seems only something they wish to be true.

If wishes were horses
Beggars would ride:
If turnips were watches
I would wear one by my side.
And if if’s and and’s were pots and pans,
The tinker would never work!

Also, Psaki attacks her opponents, the tried and true response to almost every political issue these days: her opponents are bigots, narrow-minded, motivated only by politics, and should not be believed on any issue. My critics used the same tactic. Such personal attacks are used when folks cannot or do not want to address all the particulars of the topic discussed.

The cynic in me thinks this agenda is being driven by our political elite who see it as an opportunity to build a political coalition. Many of our opposition are well intentioned and believe they advocate what is best for the LGBTQ+ folks; however, the political elite pushing this agenda don’t care what is best for our kids.  They do know how to win a fight though.  If our kids can be taught that transgenderism and all the other sexual variations in the LGBTQ LMNOP ACBXYZ rainbow are all normal, then they will have bypassed Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, and Generation X who have not glommed on to these views.  They are moving on from simply smearing their opponents to stealing the hearts and souls of our children. They realize we aren’t easily swayed or shamed by innuendoes. Our values are strongly rooted, but our children are much more impressionable and can be indoctrinated. Don’t let them be indoctrinated.

One thought on “Discussion on Transgenderism: What Is It All About?

  1. You: Please take a stand and keep an open mind.

    Me: How can you take a stand and still keep an open mind? Taking a stand states that your mind is not open. You believe what you believe, so everyone should believe what you believe, whether they believe it or not!
    I do not give a damn what you believe, but trying to make everyone believe what you believe is Not the American Way of doing things. Everyone is created equal, according to your belief, but yet you want to change everyone’s mind to believing what you believe. That is not being equal, that is saying Your way is superior! Only, your way is not superior, or everyone would naturally believe as you do. They do not. And every day more and more people are losing that belief. There is not just one way to live. There are 8 billion ways to live. Yours is only one of them.
    Your relatives say you are inflexible. They are right, as in correct.
    America started by stealing the land from those who already lived there. They did not treat the people they found there as equals. In fact, they tried to commit genocide on them. They were not willing to share, even when the original people were willing to share. You say, “America is an idea!” The idea, according to you, is that America is superior to everyone else in the world. But it is not! America is a joke, built on the slaughter of others. If that is your idea of “equality,” someone needs to step on you the way you stepped on, and crushed, the people who were here first. Maybe then you will understand how truly inferior you are.

    Like

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