Transgender Symbol (trans youth)

The religious right is desperate to mischaracterize
transgender persons.

“The more that people promote false propaganda, the more likely it is that it will be accepted as truth. Pushback is essential.”

A pseudonymous author, “Johann R. Porter,” has screeched: Women are banned: medical journal succumbs to transgender craze. The zealot’s outlet is the pretentious blog of Brian S. Brown’s hate group; International Organization for the Family.

The post is idiotic and not worthy of my time — or yours. However, it includes the following:

To what extent the once leading medical journal is still to be taken seriously after this coy avowal of transgender ideology is a matter for each reader and physician to decide.

“We end up with a mixture of religious zeal, confirmation bias and doctrinal certainty.”

Porter is right, in one sense. Circa 2010, the Obama administration issued guidance to public schools urging them to accommodate transgender students. The religious fanatics went batshit crazy; a state of derangement that has never subsided.

At about the same time (or slightly prior) medical science found evidence to support earlier transitioning. Previously, doctors tried to prevent minors from transitioning; an approach that caused suffering and deaths. More young people are transgender but the population of transgender persons remains at 0.5% to 0.6% overall.

The fact that trans youth have increased while the overall population of trans persons remains reasonably constant proves that trans youth would have otherwise transitioned later in life. Moreover, transgender kids who are supported in their gender identity are healthy, happy, secure and productive.

The Obama era guidance combined with an increase in transgender youth made the religious fanatics even batshittier — to the point of insanity. Moreover, their pressure groups tend to feed on each other (the echo chamber effect). Furthermore, transphobia is believed to create an electoral wedge issue (much like marriage equality once served GOPers).

“The existence of these few kids is terribly disturbing to people whose lives are not affected by transgender youth in any meaningful way.”

Thus, transgender youth are, indeed, a craze because their existence drives religious fundamentalists crazy. The religious crazies are defending scripture no matter how imbecilic it makes them look.

Furthermore, consider the craze that they have manufactured in proportion to its presence and effect. They are producing a whole lot of noise, drama and negative activity over very few kids. These same zealots are even trying to reduce the transgender population.

“… being transgender is no more of an ideology than conforming to the general belief that aspirin relieves headaches.”

The existence of these few kids is terribly disturbing to people whose lives are not affected by transgender youth in any meaningful way. Therefore they are resorting to efforts to ban the existence of trans youth as a matter of law and public policy.

The ultimate projection:

Sane, rational people understand that people are transgender to mitigate the effects of a medical condition. Therefore, being transgender is no more of an ideology than the general belief that aspirin relieves headaches.

“An argument is not true because it has not been proved false. The argument is false because the counter-argument has been proved true.”

Assigning motives to the aberrant behavior of humans is a risky proposition. I indulge in doing so with the realization that I am offering an hypothesis in contrast to facts supported by evidence.

With that disclaimer there are two motivations for calling transgender persons adherents to an “ideology.” Neither make much sense:

  1. Religious fundamentalists base most of their decisions in life on religious dogma. Moreover, they tend to be neither sane nor rational when it comes to those who do not conform to the doctrine which they subscribe to as incontrovertible truth.

    Therefore, it is easy to assign ideological adherence to the actions of others.

  2. Characterizing transgender persons as ideological adherents is a straw man argument. It is much easier to attack an ideology than to attack a scientifically valid means of treating a medical condition. At the same time they are arguing from ignorance that the science isn’t valid.

    An argument is not true because it has not been proved false. The argument is false because the counter-argument has been proved true.

We end up with a mixture of religious zeal, confirmation bias and doctrinal certainty. It’s all very toxic, particularly to gender-diverse youth and their families. It encourages prejudice and discrimination.

Therefore, people like me are going to continue to challenge spectacular stupidity. It is important. The more that people promote false propaganda, the more likely it is that it will be accepted as truth. Pushback is essential.

By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.