Americans traditionally prided themselves on being a rational, liberty-loving people, much unlike our cousins across the Atlantic who spent much of the 19th and 20th centuries bathing in blood spilled in the name of partisanship and ideology.
What makes some of our present day cultural trends so perilous — and Donald Trump so attractive, even to those of us who think he’s a bit of a megalomaniac — is the extent to which the American Left is no longer honoring the basic premises which undergird our American civilization.
Up is down, and right is left, wherever and whenever the cause is “just” according to the barometer of the elites and their cultural disciples.
Put more simply, Save Jerseyans, too many Westerners are abandoning reason whenever it doesn’t fit their political agenda.
Take the example of 8-year-old Joe Maldonado, a North Jersey kid who was born a biological girl but who has since “decided,” at a tender age, that she’d rather be a boy. At least one Gannett paper (see the photo on the right) is running it as Wednesday’s cover story. Since this is a newspaper chain, predictably, the slant of the story isn’t objective but heavily (and transparently) supportive of this kid’s alleged choice.
I say “alleged” because the story itself makes it pretty clear that mom did her research and decided that this tomboy was really an honest-to-goodness boy who deserved the right to do all the things that little boys do including join the Boy Scouts (emphasis added). A doctor never made the call. No judge issued an order. Joe Maldonado’s story became a story for the arbiters of social progress when the Scouts – a favorite vent for the Left for everything they hate about American society – told Joe’s mom that the child couldn’t join the scouts since, well, he doesn’t have a penis.
My words, not theirs.
After all, for most of human history, while global civilizations have held widely varying views on sex, orientation, race and class status, they’ve universally agreed that male genitalia makes someone male and female genitalia gives rise to the opposite gender inference.
We all grew up with effeminate boys who went on to marry women and produce families as adults (I’m thinking of a friend who fits that description as I write this), and we’re all equally familiar with the boy or girl who came out as gay in college as a young adult and shocked the shit out of all of his (or her) opposite sex high school sweethearts. As liberals love to remind us, sexual orientation is indeed a tad more complicate than the equipment God gave you (although I’m editorializing a bit again since we all know they don’t think God, or any deity, has any claim on any of this).
Gender, however, is different. In a few ways, and there’s consensus on that point at least if no other. In fact, an August study released in The New Atlantis, co-authored by the former Chief of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital and an Arizona State University professor of statistics and biostatistics, concluded there is no scientific basis for transgenderism.
“The hypothesis that gender identity is an innate, fixed property of human beings that is independent of biological sex — that a person might be ‘a man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’ — is not supported by scientific evidence,” explained the researchers in their comprehensive report.
Of particular relevance to the aforementioned case of an 8-year-old Jersey kid rejected from a Secaucus scout troop?
“Children are a special case when addressing transgender issues. Only a minority of children who experience cross-gender identification will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood,” continued the authors….
There is little scientific evidence for the therapeutic value of interventions that delay puberty or modify the secondary sex characteristics of adolescents, although some children may have improved psychological well-being if they are encouraged and supported in their cross-gender identification. There is no evidence that all children who express gender-atypical thoughts or behavior should be encouraged to become transgender.”
In other words, as anyone who has a kid, is around kids (or was a kid) should know, 8-year-olds aren’t done developing yet. There’s a reason why we don’t let 8-year-olds get tattoos or purchase cigarettes, either; they’re not yet prepared to make mature decisions because, gasp!, they’re not even close to done maturing.
Do some little boys prefer dolls to army men? And girls want to roll around in the dirt rather than wear princess dresses? You bet. Some of them may grow up to feel genuine attraction to the same sex. And there’s nothing inherently wrong with any of it! And the authors readily concede that a lack of scientific evidence does not mean sexual orientation and gender identity are “choices.”
Choice is loaded a word worth deliberating upon. We can’t understate the adult vs. child distinction, not just from a scientific standpoint but from a legal perspective, too. Homosexuality shouldn’t be much of an issue because adults can do what they want to do. Almost everyone believes that. But should a child get to decide the time is right to remove his genitalia or change her name? Is there any wisdom in that conclusion? Drawing on common sense, before even considering the scary studies pertaining to gender regret scenarios?
IMHO, Save Jerseyans, for a parent to put in an 8-year-old’s head that there’s something inherently wrong with his or her biology such that it’s in perpetual conflict with his her or mind, or heart, is scientifically baseless parenting and, what’s more in my humble opinion, a nakedly obvious species of child abuse. An act far more potentially injurious than anything the Scouts are capable of doing.
Now, to be fair, some of this stuff is simply shitty parenting. Many young parents (I know a few personally) aren’t culture warriors; they’re laboring under the delusion that being their kids’ best friend is priority #1, and somehow “letting children find themselves” is the same thing a “being able to be whatever you want to be” in America.
Wrong, of course. Parents can’t be friends. Parents parent so that their kids grow into adults who are capable of being their friends.
At last, we’ve come full circle in our discussion.
These bad parents picked up those bad ideas from somewhere, and that somewhere is usually the Left’s academic, cultural, entertainment and media institutions. “Becoming what you want to be” in America traditionally referred to using your God-given abilities to rise as far, or sink as low, as your own industry can propel you. Today? It’s mutated to mean “you ARE whatever you want to be,” conflating outcomes with opportunity, and more than just an example of crazily-dangerous sophistry, that mantra is also a ruinous abdication of adults’ natural mandate to protect children from others and yes, from themselves.
Even a freshman English student should be able to pick up on the qualitative difference between those phrases. Becoming versus ARE. What we can achieve in spite of ourselves, reaching our highest nature on the one hand, and wholly rejecting our nature as something awful that needs editing on the other.
Complex… yes! These are huge topics. There’s plenty to talk about here on other fronts: for example, how the scouts’ constitutional right of free association is being ignored entirely in this debate, or how a civilization can survive when absolute moral relativism is the new religion/science.
I’ll resist the urge to go much broader. My primary interest in this post is to eat what’s on our plate by asking what all of this means for American sociology generally, even before the inevitable Supreme Court showdown. Liberals smugly claim to be the defenders of science and reason in modern America but, in debates like this instant transgenderism battle (one which typically revolves around bathroom or locker room access), what it increasingly resembles is an attempt to use children as pawns in an ideological fight among adults.
The global warming debate revolves around a heated discussion of the data; the transgender debate is emotion in search of validation with very little though afforded to the potential victims. Rather than advocate further scientific research to get to the bottom of why a few kids feel the way they do, or behave in a certain matter, and how best to help these kids, advocates are fully prepared to permit children to take powerful, life-changing drugs and make irreversible decisions…. to what end?
To validate liberalism?
Revolting and dangerous could just as easily describe the potential consequences of this madness as well as the actual people driving it all. The quality of our 2016 political discourse should be all the proof you need that I’m right.
Irony: the moral relativists who coined phrases like ‘gender fluidity’ are presently creating commissions to declare what qualifies as news.
Not ready to take a stand one way or the other? That’s more than okay. If nothing else, folks, I hope my ranting convinced you that this issue is a whole hell of a lot bigger than whether one child gets to join a scout troop. We’re debating both big things AND also how these things should be debated, and discussed, in the public discourse. Don’t take any of it lightly. Resist the urgings of those driven by agendas to trivialize these momentous considerations. There’s too much at stake whether your 68 or 8.