What Makes You, You?

 

What makes you, you? And what does it mean to be true to yourself?  On a personal level, we all wrestle with these questions. But the way we answer these questions has cultural consequences as well.

One view of “self” claims that “living authentically” means being true to your desires. “If it feels good do it.” Or, in more modern parlance, “You do you, man.”  The corollary, of course, is that to deny myself my desires (or to expect someone else to do so) is essentially denying yourself the chance to be who you really are.

You find this view of “self” in the arguments in favor of redefining marriage.  “If you have the right to marry the person you want to marry, I should have the right to marry the person I want to marry too.”

Justice Kennedy echoed this sentiment in the Obergefell decision that redefined what marriage is as a legal matter. “The opportunity to marry is integral to human dignity.”

The unspoken premise underlying this argument is that there is no objective reality that should prevent me from being able to be who I want to be and do what I want to do.

My feelings define what is true.

It is clear, however, that that this does not extend just to marriage.  Only minutes after marriage was redefined, we were told that the ability to self-select ones gender was the next crisis of human dignity.

The sentiment is identical.

“If you have the right to be the gender you feel you are, I should have the right to be the gender I feel I am.”  The arguments appeal to the libertarian in us all because, “Hey, if you can do what makes you feel whole, it’s only fair that I get to do what makes me feel whole, right?”

The challenge with these arguments is that they require us to affirm a person’s worth by affirming their desires before pausing to ask whether it’s objectively true or good.

“Hey, if believing 2 + 2 = 4 makes you happy, I should be able to believe that 2 + 2 = 137 because that makes me happy.”

“Right on, Bro.”

The idea that each of us is the sum of our feelings will inevitably lead to irrational outcomes (more of which can be seen here).

But it does something more—and worse—as well.

While we all have impulses and desires, we all understand that many of our impulses and desires are not helpful because we have something else as well: the ability to reason.  That ability to reason allows us to consider what qualities make for an honorable and upright life, which, necessarily allows us to make judgments about what habits, behaviors, or choices are inconsistent with what we know to be virtuous.

However, in a culture which believes people live authentically solely by fulfilling their desires, the use of our reason to conclude that some feelings should be suppressed is judgmental and denies others human dignity.

And who wants to be guilty of that?

We can all understand the appeal in believing that the purpose of my existence is fulfill my desires. I mean, who doesn’t think that sounds good?

Still, despite the insistence of modern progressives that the path to personal fulfillment is being true to our desires, we live in a world in which our desires are trying to destroy us.  We know this because those of us who are indulging our desires most intentionally and consistently are also the most miserable.

So I ask again, what makes you, you? Are you a rational being capable of making choices despite how you feel, or you are defined by your desires?

By viewing ourselves as the sum of our desires, we deny ourselves the chance to be something better.  And, at some point, we’ll discover that we are now convinced that feeling female actually makes it so.

Making Homeless Women Pay for the Left’s Self-Righteous ‘Values’

by Silence*

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is preparing to impose a mandate next month that will require homeless shelters to provide admittance based only on gender identity.

As reported by The Hill, this effort is being made in favor of ending protections for sex-segregated group shelters for the homeless:

“Transgender women are women regardless of whether they were born male … We, obviously, need to protect women who have been sexually abused,” David Stacy, government affairs director at the Human Rights Campaign said. “But if we don’t treat people consistently with their gender identity, then a woman who was abused by her boyfriend could be housed with a transgender man who looks like a man and has a beard.”

Here are several extreme assumptions you must accept for this statement to make sense:

  • That transgender people usually “pass” as the opposite sex.
  • That there exist no biological women with facial hair or “masculine” appearances except for women (trans men) who’ve been on hormone therapy.
  • That housing transgender women with biological females is somehow safe for women.
  • That housing transgender men with biological males is somehow safer for transgender men, who are biologically female.

These assumptions, however, are generally invalid. Here’s why.

First, most people who transition as adults don’t pass. Even if your friends are being nice to you. If you have time to kill, you can read about “passing privilege,” which is a supposed privilege a transgender person gets when they are assumed by others to be the opposite biological sex. For a trans woman, this means no one realizes they’re male. Not only don’t most transgender people pass as the opposite sex, it’s considered transphobic and bigoted to assume that they should.

Whatever you may have been told, transgender advocates don’t believe that transgender people should have to try and look like the opposite sex in order to be accepted as that sex in every way. In the words of their supporters, they want women and girls to get over the discomfort of seeing male genitalia in our locker rooms, so much so that they’ve reclassified our complaints about their presence as hate speech. They want us to accept the nudity of a “range of bodies that might not fit the cisgender ideal” wherever same-sex nudity is accepted.

In other words, what the transgender movement really wants is for males not to have to bother imitating women when they want to walk into a women’s facility.

Second, there are a lot of women who don’t look stereotypically feminine. Maybe they’re tall, don’t wear makeup, wear heavy farm or work clothes, have short hair, or have a medical condition that causes excess facial hair. It didn’t used to be a public policy issue when they got hassled, though they did. Transgender activists bring them up as if the point of these policies was concern for women. Unfortunately, the relentless focus on expanding male access to women has only raised suspicions against women who don’t look stereotypically feminine.

Third, all transgender women are biologically male. It’s as safe to force women into shared housing with them as it is to force women into shared housing with any other male. Resistance to this isn’t an overblown fear of transgender people. It’s a sensible fear of common male violence and voyeurism. Every parent who’s sent their daughter to prom, every woman or girl who’s had a man stare down her shirt in public, understands.

A gender identity shelter policy in Canada already allowed a male sex predator, Christopher Hambrook, to sexually assault women at two different shelters after two prior convictions for sexually assaulting a woman and a girl. Canada’s policies allowed 53-year-old Stefonknee Wolscht (formerly Paul), to take his sick age-play fetish (Warning: offensive content) into a women’s homeless shelter after he fell on hard times (after leaving and threatening his former wife and seven children).

The transgender activism community is well aware of all of it. They have stacked the political and media deck by labeling negative examples like this as hate speech against trans people, not an accurate report of male violence against women that was a foreseeable consequence of their policies.

But you don’t have to cross the border for worrying stories.

Just this July, in Oregon, Isabel Rosa Araujo claims to have gotten a “transmisogynist” homeless woman “banhammered” from a women’s shelter for objecting to Araujo’s presence. Araujo, name aside, is neither a woman nor Latino. A white man, formerly known as Phillip Vincent Haskins-Delici, Araujo has previously admitted to hitting his own mother while living with her and has recently written on Facebook about assaulting two different homeless men in recent months.

Araujo has posted recent photos of himself wearing a dog collar with long, metal spikes, posing with guns and knives, and sporting a “Die Cis Scum” tattoo. This June, he posted a rant about “cis gay scumbags,” talking about gay male politicians, and a line drawing of a girl reading a book titled, “HOW TO KILL TRANS-PHOBIC F***ERS.”

“Izzy Hell Araujo,” formerly Ahuviya Harel (Warning: offensive content), formerly Phillip Vincent Haskins-Delici, is a “woman,” as far as the Obama administration is concerned. Araujo has the legal right to get women kicked out of women’s shelters if they complain that he makes them uncomfortable because he’s obviously a man. Look at some of what else I found posted on his social media profile and tell me how little you’d have to care about homeless women to make them share a shower with him.

Grouped Photos

Araujo

What will it take before liberals prioritize women’s safety? I wonder.

Fourth, transgender men are female and it’s as safe to put them into shared housing with lots of men as it is to put any other women into shared housing with men.

The transgender rights movement has known that women who live as men are in danger in all-male homeless shelters since at least 2003, as shared in the report, “Transitioning Our Shelters,” by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute:

“Although a female-to-male trans person (trans man) might identify themselves as a man… the reality for many is that surgery and hormones are expensive, passing is out of reach, and men’s services are not safe for a trans man who may not pass. If an FtM (female-to-male) has not been approved for testosterone, or had a mastectomy, (and even if he has…) then he is at risk for physical, verbal, and sexual assault in men’s dorms/ bathrooms/ and showers. There have been incidents of gang rape toward FtM’s in men’s shelters. Some FtM’s may choose to face these risks in a shelter that validates their identity… but they should not have to. … FtM’s need women’s services to open their doors and their policies.”

Yet the transgender policy community continues to tell transitioning women that they are protected by “male privilege” from being treated like any other woman.

That’s not true. Transitioned women won’t be in danger because of transphobia in men’s shelters, but rather misogyny. They’ll be in danger because men will see them as sexual objects in ways that they won’t see other males. Hormone treatments can’t fix that and the transgender movement doesn’t care enough about their safety to be honest with them.

The transgender activists’ response to this problem so far has been that women’s shelters should let in everyone who says they should be there. Now they’re talking as if transgender men, who are female, should be required to stay in men’s shelters. Either way, homeless women’s safety and privacy are at risk.

All the cost and burden of this policy is shouldered by destitute women who need a safe place to sleep, and women’s charities that rarely have enough resources to meet the need.

All the rewards go to Democrats who support these policies, along with liberal advocates like the ACLU or the Human Rights Campaign. They get praise for standing at the leading edge of social justice policy. Big business uses this banner to cheaply and hypocritically blunt public criticism from the left. Fading celebrities use boycotts over transgender inclusion to gain popularity. They can be celebrated for pushing to end single-sex facilities without having to donate to improve or expand shelter for the homeless, or making men’s shelters safer for males who don’t conform to sex stereotypes.

How did this happen? Why do so many news stories claim that these policies have been in place for years with no problems, when it they were hardly discussed before the last two years? If I’m telling the truth, why aren’t the women’s shelters up in arms about this? Why aren’t the women’s organizations speaking out?

The answers are related. It seems to be about money.

The 2013 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) contained a little-discussed provision requiring all organizations and local governments accepting some of its hundreds of millions of dollars in funding to offer access to services based on gender identity. Policies were very quietly put in place across the nation — and at organizations that take VAWA money, like the YMCA — requiring access to sex-segregated facilities to be based on gender identity.

After seeing the Obama administration threaten school districts and state governments with losses of federal funding, witnessing the silencing that goes on, women’s secular anti-violence and shelter networks fully surrendered. Now they can sign as many letters as they want to saying yes to these policies, but they can’t say no to them, either.

If the women’s shelters have to pick between helping some women and occasionally letting in a violent man like Phillip Vincent Haskins-Delici, or having to close their doors and help no one, who can blame them? They’re acting under duress. As are the women’s nonprofits, who now face a philanthropic community fully committed to spending big money on transgender politics.

Think on this: When a person can’t say no, she can’t mean yes.

Homeless women can’t say no to this. The shelters that serve them can’t say no to it. The women’s groups who usually advocate for them can’t say no to their funders and political allies.

Please, stop making us say yes.


Note from the Author:

“For reasons of personal safety and livelihood, I cannot disclose my real identity. But I can tell you this much: I’m a progressive feminist who has spent years working on the front lines of the left. I have opposed conservatism my entire political life in the most strident of terms; under other circumstances, I wouldn’t admit to even reading this site.”

There Was a Certain Rape: A Look Inside the Transgender Movement

by Silence

For reasons of personal safety and livelihood, I can’t tell you who I am. But I can tell you this much: I’m a progressive feminist who has spent years working on the front lines of the left. I have opposed conservatism my entire political life in the most strident of terms; under other circumstances, I wouldn’t admit to even reading this site.

Yet, I’ve known for a while that questioning the official narrative of transgender activism (a cause championed wholeheartedly and without question by nearly everyone on the left) can get you blacklisted from media and political work.

People I thought of as friends and colleagues have turned into thought police, and anyone who dares to question the official line is intimidated into capitulation and silence — or forced to find another line of work. So I’m writing you like this, here, to ask you to think carefully about the public safety impacts of the story you’re about to read.

On March 26th, 2016, there was a certain rape. Let me be more specific: a prominent transgender (born male) activist raped another transgender (born female) person and bragged about it on the Internet.

Both the details of the event and the larger circumstances matter, because the truth matters.

Transgender activist and admitted rapist Cherno Biko is still making appearances on behalf of the transgender movement.

Cherno Biko is a transgender woman. As Co-Chair of the Young Women’s Advisory Council for New York City, Biko is deeply embedded in a movement that strongly invests in forcing all public speech to contort itself around the idea that transgender women, who are biologically male, are instead biologically female and always have been.

In New York City, where Biko lives, it is a crime, punishable by a fine of up to $250,000, to intentionally refer to a transgender person in a way that causes offense.

Transgender ideology itself hinges on the assumption that a person is transitioning to live under gender roles normally prescribed to the opposite sex. The public has been led to believe that ‘transgender’ is another word for ‘transsexual’, someone who has an overwhelming compulsion to have a full surgical transition. But this is false.

Here’s what happened:

During what started as consensual intercourse, Biko told the victim – whom we’ll call “J” – that he wanted to get “J” pregnant with his children. Biko then removed his condom, and continued the act over the victim’s objection. (“J” is a transgender man, but otherwise biologically and anatomically female.)

“To be honest, I’m relieved that I can now speak directly to these issues, from the perspective of both a victim and abuser,” Biko wrote afterwards. This expressed relief was short-lived. That sentence was removed, and, as of July 28, read as follows:

“As I began to learn more about consent I discovered that under [New York State] law it is impossible for a person who is mentally unstable to give consent. I struggled with this idea because it leaves no space for varying degrees of mental illness or for people who experience mental illness but have never been diagnosed like myself.”

In a space of days, Biko moved from admitting culpability for a serious crime to playing the victim.

Here’s Why It’s Rape

In this case, a biologically male person raped a biologically female person, for the purpose of forcible impregnation. Even Chase Strangio of the ACLU, notorious for stating that there’s no such a thing as a male or female body, knows what kind of bodies I’m talking about when I say that someone with a penis pulled off a condom and tried to get someone else pregnant during heterosexual intercourse. What types of bodies get pregnant? Everyone knows.

Transgender dogma is such that Biko’s victim, “J,” has been conditioned to believe that, although they were born female, they have acquired male privilege over biologically and anatomically male individuals like Cherno Biko, and are therefore expected to protect them in cases such as this.

But even if “J” pressed charges, knowing the nature of laws regarding transgender speech in New York City, how could a prosecutor clearly describe what happened to a judge and jury? Transgender individuals often strongly object to using either medically accurate terms for their body parts or even veiled references such as “male genitalia.”

Even in the event of a conviction, presuming that Biko’s official documents inaccurately list his sex as female, New York State laws would likely require housing Biko in a female correctional facility.

According to the Correctional Association of New York, of the women in prison in the state, “three-quarters have histories of severe physical abuse by an intimate partner during adulthood, and 82% suffered serious physical or sexual abuse as children.” Is a person with intact penis and testes and a penchant for forcible impregnation really a suitable cell or shower mate for the already-abused women held in New York State facilities?

In the likely event that nothing changes and Biko continues to roam free, what will this mean practically? The victim of Biko’s crime admitted that Biko was unable to pay $80 for potential HIV exposure. What if Biko were to lose his housing and require the services of a homeless shelter? The Obama administration has declared that all formerly single-sex crisis shelters must accept individuals on the basis of gender identity, and has made clear that questioning such claims opens shelters to civil rights complaints.

Is a person with intact male genitalia and a penchant for forcible impregnation a suitable women’s dormitory resident, when the other women there have nowhere to go?

Men can be raped, too. Yet, a male body cannot be subject to impregnation.

These simple, commonly-understood facts have been wholly uncontroversial until recently. When and why did it become taboo to look at a situation like this and accurately describe it?

When transgender woman Dana McCallum raped his wife after being served with divorce papers, everyone seemed most interested in making sure the word “male” was never attached to the perpetrator. Former colleagues issued no statements and McCallum’s writing was scrubbed from the feminist media site where it had previously appeared.

Will Biko’s name and work disappear just as quietly? Is that even possible, given his status as a media darling?

On March 31, 2016, Biko spoke at the White House for Trans Day Of Visibility. On June 14, 2016, Biko attended The United State of Women, hosted by President Obama, and First Lady Michelle Obama. That is, Biko attended two White House appearances, and not his first, since remorselessly raping “J.”

Maybe “J” is worried about Biko’s well being. Though maybe “J” also knows, like I do, that speaking out against prominent transgender activists often brings an avalanche of death threats, rape threats, and threats of economic retribution.

Will the transgender movement ever wake up to the consequences of the stifling silence they’ve created, now that a self-described rapist has represented them twice this year at the White House?

To date, the transgender community doesn’t seem to want accountability. They want problems to go away as quickly and quietly as possible. When Allison Woolbert was outed as a former child rapist under Woolbert’s birth name, Dennis, the transgender community acted largely as if it had never happened. Woolbert’s prominence in anti-violence initiatives prompted very little soul-searching.

When Chad Sevearance-Turner, the lead organizer of the Charlotte, North Carolina, effort to end sex-segregated private spaces in the city, was revealed to be a registered sex offender, he, too, was simply quietly retired from that campaign, as reported in the Charlotte Observer.

According to the transgender movement, the State of New York, and the Obama administration, Biko is a woman, who can be in a state of undress anywhere that any biological female can be in a state of undress. According to gender identity laws ending sex-segregated private spaces, even Sevearance-Turner has only to declare himself a woman to be allowed to undress in female-only spaces.

In New York City, where Biko lives, it’s a potential violation of the human rights laws to publicly mention a transgender person’s former name. Will Biko be able to change his name again and claim this protection?

Gender identity policy changes that go beyond issues of preventing housing and employment discrimination aren’t mainly (and never were) about bathrooms. Bathrooms are simply where the legal definition of “same-sex” collides most often with the paths of the general public.

But promoters of the transgender policy agenda insist that it’s wrong to discuss the possibility that predators could misuse its proposals. They’ve done this so effectively within the policy and media elite that the only questions now come from the right.

They’re the same people who will read this article about a brutal rape, and complain that the real violence is that Biko has been “misgendered” by being referred to as male, just so the facts could be clearly communicated.

This doesn’t have to be a partisan issue. Let’s just promote common sense.

Seattle City Council to Vote to Ban Same-Sex Attraction Therapy

 

The Civil Rights, Utilities, Economic Development and Arts Committee of the Seattle City Council has unanimously approved a measure that would outlaw all therapy or counseling for minors that does not fully affirm their chosen sexual orientation.  The legislation is expected to be approved by the full Council at its August 1 meeting.

The therapy in question, often called sexual orientation conversion therapy, or conversion therapy, generally involves a licensed therapist or counselor working with a client who is experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction.  This move by the Seattle City Council would block parents and guardians from allowing their children to participate in this type of treatment.

Mayor Ed Murray stands in full support of the legislation.

Once adopted, the City of Seattle would levy fines of $1,000 on any licensed therapist caught offering any sort of counseling or therapy to children that doesn’t affirm their chosen lifestyle and sexuality.

With passage, the City of Seattle would join just three other cities in the country — Cincinnati, Ohio, Miami Beach, Florida, and Washington, D.C. — in efforts to remove the rights of parents to seek proper and appropriate treatment for their children.

Seattle residents and concerned citizens are encouraged to contact the Seattle City Council to share thoughts on why this ban would be harmful to children and to the promotion and benefit of healthy sexuality.  The public is also welcome to attend the Seattle City Council meeting on August 1st from 2-3pm.

 

 

Two Washington Congresswomen Attempting to Ban Same-Sex Attraction Therapy

 

A group of 28 U.S. Representatives and four U.S. Senators, including Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Representative Suzan DelBene (D-WA), have requested that the federal government ban same-sex attraction therapy.

In a letter addressed February 10, the Senators said that they “urge the Federal Trade Commission to take decisive action to stop the unfair, deceptive, and fraudulent practice of conversion therapy under the authority provided to your agency in the Federal Trade Commission Act.”

Reparative therapy, also known as conversion therapy, same-sex attraction therapy, sexual reorientation therapy, or sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), has been successfully used by doctors and therapists to help patients overcome their same-sex attractions.

According to the Family Research Council, “Most ‘sexual reorientation therapy’ today consists of ‘talk therapy’ – a client simply talking with a counselor about his or her feelings, experiences, relationships with parents and peers, etc.”

Reparative therapy is detested by some secular health professionals who believe that all sexual orientations are normal and healthy. Despite reputable scientific research that demonstrates there is no evidence that people are born gay and that sexual orientation among young people often changes, opponents of reparative therapy allege that it, as well as other approaches that discourage homosexuality, are harmful to patients because it encourages them to reject their true sexual identity.

Parents should be able to seek medical help for their children who are struggling with their sexuality. Medical professionals subvert parental rights when they celebrate and encourage a child’s same-sex inclinations against the moral convictions of the parents.

Likewise, banning reparative therapy takes away the prerogative of families to seek treatment that is in the best interests of their children. Patients are also deprived of the means to seek and procure treatment that may help them overcome their struggles.

Sen. Murray and Rep. DelBene should not be able to prohibit loving parents from seeking treatment for their children. With the help of medical professionals and faith leaders, parents and patients – not politicians in Washington, D.C. – are in the best position to decide what is in the best interest of their children.

Legislation prohibiting this activity has been tried in Washington’s legislature before.  Will you stand with us to block it again?

Opinion: ‘Knock Someone Up in Texas’ Tweet Displays Left’s Logical Fallacies

 

On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that Texas cannot place restrictions on abortion clinics on the basis that it would create an “undue burden for women seeking an abortion.”  With that ruling, Texas’ HB2 was overturned.

Had this not been the outcome, opponents had said that Texas’ law would have shut down abortion clinics all over the state. Justice Ginsburg even insinuated that the law was intended to close options for abortion to women rather than provide them with safe and accessible facilities.

Since the ruling, numerous reproductive rights activists have expressed their delight and support of the ruling, calling it a “win” for women. Regardless of your perspective, it can be said that the ruling is one of the most significant and most progressive for the pro-choice movement since the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey case.

Hillary Clinton and President Obama voiced their support of the SCOTUS decision immediately.

Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Trevor Noah tweeted out its own distasteful expression of support:

The left’s previous shouts of joy and tweets of approval were short-lived as the torrent of angry and agitated tweets began in response to The Daily Show’s joke. “Irresponsible” and “embracing rape culture” were some of the descriptors used among the countless tweets in response.

But the seemingly contradictory ideology of the pro-choice movement should be noticed.

If the upset pro-choicers were questioned whether or not The Daily Show was treating the SCOTUS ruling and sex with flippancy, their answer would most likely be a resounding “yes.”  Yet the people who are aggravated and upset about the flippancy with which The Daily Show is treating pregnancy or sexual intercourse are the same people who are themselves demeaning the sanctity of life.

Proponents of abortion might respond, “Sanctity of life? There’s no life in that womb. That’s not a person.” But studies show that as much as 20-35% of babies born at 23 weeks and even some at 20-22 weeks survive without major medical impairments. The idea that “there’s no life in that womb” isn’t feasible.

The question needs to be asked of those on the left: if pregnancy doesn’t matter, if abortion is a legitimate option for the sake of convenience and should be readily accessible, if biological consequences of sex are avoidable, then why does it matter if someone goes and “knock[s] someone up in Texas”?

Logically, it is unwise and hypocritical to use a particular line of reasoning in an argument and then become upset when someone else takes up the same reasoning – a logical fallacy known as ad hominem tu quoque.

Let’s be consistent.

Megan Gentleman is a student at Liberty University and serves as a summer intern at the Family Policy Institute of Washington.  

Opinion: Why Schools Aren’t the Place to Learn About Transgenderism

 

The state’s new health and physical education standards have provoked a strong backlash from parents and citizens who are outraged that children will be taught about gender expression, gender identity, and sexual orientation in elementary school. For example, children in third grade will now be taught that they can choose their own gender. Their fourth grade peers will learn about the range of sexual orientation.

Astonished by what their children will be taught under the new standards, parents are left wondering whether public schools are the appropriate forum for dialogue about gender identity and sexual orientation – especially in the elementary and middle school.

Parents should be concerned. The latest science supports what we used to regard as commonsense – that teaching young students about gender identity and alternative sexual lifestyles will be a confusing and harmful experience for them.

The American College of Pediatricians warns against parents, doctors, and teachers encouraging children to undergo gender transition.  “Endorsing gender discordance as normal via public education and legal policies, will confuse children and parents, leading more children to present to ‘gender clinics’ where they will be given puberty-blocking drugs.” The American College of Pediatricians likens the normalizing of transgenderism among children to “child abuse.”

Despite this, Washington’s public education system stands firmly behind its decision to push gender identity and gender expression on students as young as five years old, despite strong warnings from the medical community.

The vast majority of children who struggle with gender identity will eventually outgrow their confusion and accept their biological sex. According to statistics provided on page 455 of the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-5, as many as 98% of boys and 88% of girls who struggle with gender dysphoria as children will no longer identify as the other gender after finishing puberty.

Cross-sex hormones present unsafe health risks for the individual undergoing transition. These hormone treatments increase the risk of high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke, and cancer. When children undergo cross-sex hormone therapy, their growth is often inhibited and their fertility is often irreversibly impaired.  The suicide rate among those who have undergone sex reassignment is twenty times higher than that of the general population.

Teaching gender identity and sexual orientation in schools normalizes the behavior. Once the behavior is normalized and students are told they can choose their own gender, we will undoubtedly see an increase in children pursuing harmful hormone therapies and irreversible gender reassignment surgeries.

If public schools rationalize gender dysphoria to young students, why are we to assume that more children won’t be subjected to the associated risks, as the statement by the pediatricians association suggests?  Children who would have otherwise never “struggled” with gender dysphoria may now be taught to question their own identity.

Moreover, teachers are rarely equipped to teach about topics relating to gender identity and sexual orientation.  Requiring them to teach this information may cause them to violate their own beliefs.  Additionally, how can parents be sure that their convictions and values will not be undermined by what their children are being taught in school?

Schools should heed the warnings from doctors and researchers. Children are harmed when they are taught that alternative gender identities and sexual orientations are normal. Conversations with children about gender identity and sexual orientation should be left to parents and doctors, not schools.

Blaine Conzatti is a columnist and 2016 Research Fellow at the Family Policy Institute of Washington. He can be reached at Blaine@FPIW.org.

Alaska: Running Alongside the Lower 48 in Gender Inclusivity

 

Gender neutrality and transgenderism are certainly hot topics in the realm of bathroom and locker room policies, but high school sports are now starting to see the impact as well. Despite President Obama’s threat to remove federal funding from schools that did not facilitate gender neutral bathrooms, the official law as it relates to gender still differs from state to state.

For example, while a high school in Illinois is happy to have a biological female on their boys’ lacrosse team, a school district in Texas is implementing an amendment in August that would require students to “use their birth certificate when demonstrating their gender in regards to athletics.’

Despite its geographical distance from the rest of the lower 48, the state of Alaska is dealing with the same issue. Nattaphon “Ice” Wangyot, an 18-year old male, was allowed to compete in the girls’ track championships because he identifies internally as a woman.  Wangyot competed in the Class 3A girls’ sprints, placing third in the 200-meter dash with 27.3 seconds and placed fifth in the 100-meter dash with 13.36 seconds.

Wangyot’s time edged out female competitors, including Saskia Harrison.  “I’m glad that this person is comfortable with who they are and they’re able to be happy with who they are. But competitively I don’t think it’s completely 100 percent fair.”

Peyton Young, another Alaskan high school athlete, echoed those sentiments. “I don’t know what’s politically correct to say, but in my opinion your gender is what you’re born with. It’s the DNA. Genetically a guy has more muscle mass than a girl, and if he’s racing against a girl, he may have an advantage.”

Alaska Family Action was also in attendance to protest Wangyot’s competing in the girls’ division. The group shared that they were there to “protect their girls,” fearing that allowing males to compete against females diminished the chance for girls to win and get noticed for scholarships.  Track meets and similar sporting events are prime opportunities for athletic talent scouts to get a visual on prospective scholarship recipients. However, if males are able to compete against females, this may threaten the equal opportunity that exists for biological girls on the playing field.

When asked about its policy regarding athletics, Alaska Schools Activities Association Executive Director Billy Strickland cited “practicality,” as the reason that ASAA leaves the decision up to the individual school districts to decide if an athlete can compete in a gender-specific sport.  The ASAA doesn’t have a state-wide policy for transgendered athletes.

Wangyot was aware of the controversy brought about by his admission into the girls’ sporting events. “The people who are going to think, ‘It’s not fair to play with the boys’ — well, you don’t know that. It’s not easy. It’s not like I wake up and ‘OK, I’m a girl right now.” Wangyot’s own school has worked with him in order to allow him to continue enjoying sports on a team he feels that he identifies with better.  This past year, he was allowed to compete on the girls’ volleyball and basketball team.

With all the fight for gender neutrality, has the fight now posed a threat to high school females who rely on athletic programs for scholarship opportunities?  Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Washington Schools to Teach Gender Identity Curriculum in Kindergarten

 

Kindergarten used to be a place for children to learn how to add, subtract, and read.  Next year, Washington school children as young as five years old will instead be learning about gender fluidity and the differences between gender and sexual identity.

The newly-minted health and physical education standards, released by the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), will be implemented in schools across the state for the 2017-2018 school year.

As reported by The Daily Caller, the new standards require students to learn about gender identity and expression beginning in kindergarten.

  • Beginning in Kindergarten, students will be taught about the many ways to express gender.  Gender expression education will include information about the manifestations of traits that are typically associated with one gender. Crossdressing is one form of gender expression.
  • Third graders will be introduced to the concept of gender identity.  These children will be taught that they can choose their own gender.
  • Fourth graders will be expected to “define sexual orientation,” which refers to whether a person identifies as heterosexual, homosexual, or bisexual; they’ll also be taught about HIV prevention.  Children in fourth grade will be told that they can choose their sexual orientation.
  • Fourth and fifth graders will learn about the relativity of gender roles and why such roles are social constructs that are not inherent to who we are as male or female human beings.
  • Seventh graders will be expected to “distinguish between biological sex, gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.”
  • High school students will critically “evaluate how culture, media, society, and other people influence our perceptions of gender roles, sexuality, relationships, and sexual orientation.”

These changes to education standards will transform public schools into a conduit for promoting the latest gender theories plaguing universities across the country.

Perhaps the most concerning element about the new standards, however, is that OSPI has no plans to notify parents of these controversial changes.  In a phone call this morning with FPIW, OSPI communications manager Nathan Olsen confirmed the changes and said that the state does not plan to issue a press release or otherwise inform parents of the changes.

When asked by The Daily Caller “whether a student who rejects the idea that ‘gender identity’ is distinct from ‘biological sex’ could end up failing a course on account of their beliefs, Olson replied that it “would be handled at the district/school level.’”

Parents should be concerned about whether these standards are age-appropriate, as well as whether the manner in which these topics will be taught may undermine the values held by their family.  It is frightening to think that students who hold traditional beliefs about gender and sexual identity may have to choose between accepting politically correct talking points or failing assignments and being ostracized by school administrators.

We encourage all concerned parents to attend the next school board meeting in your school district (find information on your school district here).  Ask if your local school board plans to implement the state’s radical new curriculum for elementary school classes in your child’s school and, if you aren’t satisfied with the response you get from the school board, we’d encourage you to run for the school board and to let us know of your intention.

You can sign the petition to show your opposition at this link, and support FPIW as we work to return sanity to the classroom and culture.

New York City Announces Protections for 31 New Genders

 

Do you have a hard time selecting from the traditional two sexes of male and female? Is it difficult for you to conform to the “societal construct” of the gender binary?

We have good news for you! Last week, New York City’s Human Rights Commission created a new list of 31 protected gender identities from which New Yorkers can now choose.

The list includes classic gender identities such as ‘two-spirit,’ ‘pan-gender,’ ‘third sex,’ and ‘gender gifted.’ If it’s been a while since you’ve been to school and you’re unfamiliar with modern gender language, our very own University of Washington offers a convenient guide to gender identity terminology here.

Crossdressers, drag kings, and drag queens are also included as fully-protected identities under the ordinance. Businesses that don’t respect and accommodate any of the 31 protected gender identities could face fines of up to $250,000.

New York’s list of gender identities is so progressive that it contains gender identity labels which didn’t even exist more than a few years ago. Go check your dictionary to see if it defines terms like ‘gender gifted’ or ‘gender blender.’

You can read the full list of newly-minted protected genders from the New York City Human Rights Commission here.