Bishop Joseph Strickland
(L-R) Bishop Joseph Strickland and Catholic radio host Terry Barber

via Rumble

Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas has a great deal to say about transgender people. Look, I get that a religious point of view might differ from secular opinion. However, transgender persons comprise a very vulnerable minority group. They do not deserve this negative attention which is harmful to their lives.

I would not mind so much if the blowhards would explain that their views differ from science. In contrast they offer dogmatic pronouncements as objective truth.

Strickland regurgitates the dogmatic boilerplate: Gender theory is a sign that ‘error’ is taking over society. A representative of Rumble has told me that they will not tolerate these prejudicial videos. We will see about that.

I will get back to the video. Bur first:

A quick backgrounder on Bishop Strickland. Last September Strickland said that good Catholics cannot vote for Democrats. Speaking as an individual Strickland might not have crossed the line on nonprofit involvement in politics which is prohibited under U.S. law.

Nevertheless, Strickland never really speaks as an individual. The faithful presuppose that he is speaking on behalf of the Catholic Church and they have a religious duty to be obedient to the bishops.

As an aside, to the best of my knowledge, two Catholic priests have served as members of Congress: Robert Drinan and and Robert John Cornell. Both were especially liberal Democrats.

Right off the bat, “gender theory” is religious BS. It is harmful. The intent is to assert that transgender people are wed to a doctrine or a philosophy and that gender is not a scientific reality.

In truth, gender is overwhelmingly accepted by science as a separate construct from natal sex. It is settled science. What Strickland is implying is that transgender people should be counseled away from a theoretical doctrine (as in “conspiracy theory”).

Strickland goes on to condemn “the progression of error” and supposed chaos that is supposedly spreading throughout, supposedly, many parts of society due to what he insists is gender theory and the denial of human dignity.

It is an ironic point of view. Ironic because, whatever chaos exists around transgender people, it is manufactured by conservative Christians and the Catholic Church in defense of scripture. The Church has been explicit in its references to Genesis 1:27.

Strickland claims that “chaos ensues when God is left out of the picture.” Apparently, the scientific fact that some people have a medical condition for which the best treatment is gender affirmation removes Strickland’s god from his environment.

Furthermore Stickland is trying to promote the ridiculous idea that human dignity is raised to a higher level when people have extreme prejudice of people whose sexuality the Church does not approve of. The Church has a very troubled history along those lines. Different targets but the same effect.

According to Strickland, religious dogma is objective truth and people who accept transgender persons as worthy people just as they are “have lost their way.” Strickland goes on to say that his truth is not bigotry. Devoting 25 minutes to the denigration of vulnerable transgender people is not bigotry?

Strickland does what many dogmatists do. Strickland says that his opinions define incontrovertible truth regardless of evidence to the contrary. Then he essentially claims that people who do not accept his opinions as truth are evil and immoral (making “chaos”).

Chaos is most certainly not defined as disagreement with some blowhard incapable of separating objective truth from religious doctrine. The short definition of chaos is complete disorder and confusion.

It’s just my opinion but, if anyone is confused it is Bishop Strickland who is dismissing an entire body of evidence-based scientific findings. Strickland is saying: “Two plus two equals five if I say it does.” Is there a better example of chaos as confusion and disorder?

Again, I have no problem with any of this if it is in context. Only four words are required: “As Catholics we believe …” What would be so terrible about admitting that his belief system is based on faith rather than evidence?

To do so would be refreshingly honest. It would also remove some of the stink of bigoted transphobia.