Transgender Tragedy Continues

 

Transgender student Nicole Maines listens during a hearing before the Maine Supreme Court. A lawsuit accuses a school district of breaking a state law in 2007 when it stopped letting Nicole Maines use the girls’ bathroom and required to her use a staff bathroom after a student’s grandfather complained. Maines was born a boy.

Last week the American Civil Liberties Union sued Alabama state officials in a federal district court on behalf of three transgender individuals. The plaintiffs all suffer from gender dysphoria: Darcy Corbitt and Destiny Clark are men but want to obtain Alabama driver’s licenses that describe them as female; John Doe is female but seeks to change her driver’s license to one identifying her as male.

In this latest court case, the ACLU is challenging the constitutionality of Alabama’s Driver License Policy Order No. 63, which requires that a person either submit an amended birth certificate or “a letter from the physician that performed the reassignment procedure.”

To this onlooker, Alabama is trying to ensure that changing one’s gender on a driver’s license is not done frivolously, but is the result of a life-changing commitment to the person’s changed gender identification. The ACLU says, however, that the state of Alabama is violating the Equal Protection Clause of the US Constitution, because only transgender people are targeted; it also accuses the state of insisting “…gender is determined solely by the appearance of external genitals at the time of birth unless modified through certain surgical procedures….”

This lawsuit reminds us that there are several tragedies that have emerged due to the way that transgenderism is being addressed in our culture; those tragedies are unfolding for the transgender person, for the individual citizen and for society at large.

Citizens of the US, to begin, are being forced to accept and acknowledge the people who identify as transgender. In the cited article, Margot Cleveland explains the expectations that transgender individuals have for the greater population:

The government also cannot force citizens to endorse the view that sex is ‘assigned’ at birth, that sex is mutable, or that sex can be changed. The government cannot force citizens to convey an ideological message that a transgender person is a sex other than his or her biological sex—a message with which many vehemently disagree. And a state cannot require its citizens to say something is true that they know is false or endorse a government message about sex perception with which they strongly disagree.

Yet that is exactly what the ACLU seeks to do in its lawsuit against Alabama, arguing ‘a person’s gender identity is what determines the gender a person lives as, and how the person should be recognized for all social and legal purposes.’

Essentially the ACLU is telling the country how we must think, feel, and act. One could argue that the First Amendment protects us from that kind of demand.

An even worse tragedy is taking place regarding the transgender population. Schools and the medical community are complicit in convincing vulnerable students that gender fluidity is normal, even though there are many questions about gender confusion:

Then again, compelling juvenile minds to believe they understand complicated medical conditions that psychiatrists themselves still have not resolved is par for the course. If public schools have succeeded at anything over the last 60 years, they have painfully revealed that they can convince impressionable minds of many things that are just untrue. But so long as students graduate feeling good about their dismal knowledge, subpar reading levels, and their politically correct indoctrination in to absurdity, who cares about reality?

And finally, the worst tragedy is seen in the steps taken to “cure” this disorder. The data regarding the people who have taken steps to change their gender is alarming:

  1. “90 percent of these diverse patients had at least one other significant form of psychopathology” reported Case Western Reserve University’s Department of Psychiatry in a study of transgender outcomes at their clinic. In other words, 90 percent of the patients were suffering from a mental illness that gender surgery did not alleviate.
  2. 61 percent of the patients treated for cross-gender identification (359 people) had other psychiatric disorders and illnesses, notably personality, mood, dissociative, and psychotic disorders according to a 2003 Dutch survey of board-certified Dutch psychiatrists.
  3. A 2013 University of Louisville survey of 351 transgender individuals found that the rates of depression and anxiety symptoms within the study “far surpass the rates of those for the general population.” About half had depressive symptoms and more than 40 percent had symptoms of anxiety.

What are we doing? Are we perpetuating a myth in the name of progressive propaganda and social justice? Is there no way to stop the assaults on our children, our citizens, on these suffering people who see themselves as incomplete, and on society as a whole?

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  1. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    I have been asked to post this comment anonymously:

     

    It’s obvious (to me) that there’s an underlying psychological issue that is not being addressed while the cross dressing is being supported and encouraged and celebrated.

    So much so that really, how could a child change his/her mind when everyone around them is telling them how brave they are, and how horrible people who don’t support their decision are. It’s hard not to imagine them carried by a wave of support and admiration all the way to the operating room.

    • #31
  2. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I believe adults with all kinds of body dysmorphia issues should be broadly free to act upon them, however unwise I consider their decisions.

    Really? Are you in support of doctor assisted suicide, then? Why or why not?

    How do you feel about a surgeon severing the spine of an otherwise healthy person who believes she’s paraplegic?

    No, I support neither doctor-assisted suicide nor doctor-assisted non-medically-required crippling and dismembering.

    That’s why I said broadly free. I believe people should be broadly free to engage in free speech and the free-market. That doesn’t mean I support unfettered free speech, including slander and libel and fraud and incitement to violence. Nor do I support unfettered free-market activity: I don’t think you should be free to sell heroin or fissile material or anthrax spores, for example.

    But I broadly support a person’s right to decide how he’s going to look, and what cosmetic and elective surgery he wants to pursue.

    • #32
  3. dnewlander Coolidge
    dnewlander
    @dnewlander

    Merrijane (View Comment):

    “…it also accuses the state of insisting ‘…gender is determined solely by the appearance of external genitals at the time of birth unless modified through certain surgical procedures….’”

    Even if you believe gender is a fluid thing, sex is not. I can never understand why they conflate the two terms—except that some are obviously trying to get others to mistake one for the other. The most egregious example of this is doctors who don’t note a transgender individual’s actual sex in their medical records. For reals? People who are genetically men have different risk factors than women and vice versa, even outside of lifestyle differences. You are doing them a disservice by not acknowledging that fact.

    Words have gender. People have sex.

    • #33
  4. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    dnewlander (View Comment):

    Merrijane (View Comment):

    “…it also accuses the state of insisting ‘…gender is determined solely by the appearance of external genitals at the time of birth unless modified through certain surgical procedures….’”

    Even if you believe gender is a fluid thing, sex is not. I can never understand why they conflate the two terms—except that some are obviously trying to get others to mistake one for the other. The most egregious example of this is doctors who don’t note a transgender individual’s actual sex in their medical records. For reals? People who are genetically men have different risk factors than women and vice versa, even outside of lifestyle differences. You are doing them a disservice by not acknowledging that fact.

    Words have gender. People have sex.

    We need a new lexicon.

    Unfortunately, the left is busy creating one.

    • #34
  5. kylez Member
    kylez
    @kylez

    Maines was born a boy.

    No, Maines is a boy. He’s a boy wearing makeup.

    • #35
  6. kylez Member
    kylez
    @kylez

    To me, the only answer (aside from being adults and telling them to stop) is to remove them from regular public schools. Put them in schools for disturbed children. We’ll see how quickly they decide their cured.

    • #36
  7. Paula Lynn Johnson Inactive
    Paula Lynn Johnson
    @PaulaLynnJohnson

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    By the way, we have several gay male friends who know the situation well. Several of them told us that at a young age they thought they wanted to be a girl and are now horrified at the thought.

    This mirrors the experience of a friend of mine and her son.  He went through a phase in elementary school where he wanted to wear dresses.  His Mom allowed it, but only at home after school.  The phase passed.  He’s now a young man and very comfortably and openly gay.  The actor Rupert Everett described living through the same type of experimental phase.  But now both parents and kids are taking these experimental phases as proof positive they need to start “transitioning”.

    • #37
  8. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    By the way, is it a COC violation to state the humorous names for these two operations?

    I’d prefer you didn’t, Stad. BTW, if you read the case, Alabama is stating that people must have the gender change surgery; that’s what this is about.

    Ahhhhh . . . I stand corrected – and it wasn’t even my wife who did it this time!

    • #38
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Paula Lynn Johnson (View Comment):
    The phase passed. He’s now a young man and very comfortably and openly gay.

    Good to see you, Paula. Yes, the motivation for doing otherwise is perverse and self-serving. People don’t have the patience to let their kids simply grow up and grow into their lives.

    • #39
  10. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Stad (View Comment):
    Ahhhhh . . . I stand corrected – and it wasn’t even my wife who did it this time!

    Since I know you love your wife, I’ll take that as a compliment!

    • #40
  11. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    But I broadly support a person’s right to decide how he’s going to look, and what cosmetic and elective surgery he wants to pursue.

    If this means you support a person’s right to sex “reassignment,” we’re in disagreement.

    My point is, mentally ill people may choose whatever they like — they can be a pink unicorn living on Mars in their own minds — but medical professionals should be prohibited from mutilating healthy human tissues for any reason. First, do no harm.

    • #41
  12. Hypatia Inactive
    Hypatia
    @Hypatia

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I believe adults with all kinds of body dysmorphia issues should be broadly free to act upon them, however unwise I consider their decisions. But I have zero interest in contorting the rest of us into some contrived stance of approval. And that goes doubly so for pronoun usage.

    My thoughts exactly, Hank. This is a free country–and I am also free to reject their expectations of me.

    Mayhem should be illegal. Period.  Look up “trans-abled.”  Should people whose “body dysphoria ” makes them “self-identify” as paralyzed, blind, deaf be able to get handicapped parking stickers?  Should they be able to attend colleges for the blind or deaf?

    • #42
  13. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Hypatia (View Comment):
    Mayhem should be illegal. Period. Look up “trans-abled.” Should people whose “body dysphoria ” makes them “self-identify” as paralyzed, blind, deaf be able to get handicapped parking stickers? Should they be able to attend colleges for the blind or deaf?

    You have a good point, Hypatia. Where does the desire to be a victim end? Or does it?

    • #43
  14. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    But I broadly support a person’s right to decide how he’s going to look, and what cosmetic and elective surgery he wants to pursue.

    If this means you support a person’s right to sex “reassignment,” we’re in disagreement.

    My point is, mentally ill people may choose whatever they like — they can be a pink unicorn living on Mars in their own minds — but medical professionals should be prohibited from mutilating healthy human tissues for any reason. First, do no harm.

    Yes, we probably disagree. I’m undecided about whether or not doctors should be allowed to perform sexual “reassignment” surgery, and in which cases.

    I know that there are physically androgynous people, though they’re rare. I can easily imagine that hard choices might be made in those cases to settle the person into one or the other sex and allow him or her to live a relatively normal life.

    I don’t understand the psychological dysmorphia, the conviction that some people have that they should really be the sex they aren’t. My suspicion is that this is also quite rare, but that it’s a trending fad right now thanks to all the attention we give it. (I would guess that most cases are men who are sexually aroused by the thought of appearing to be women; that it’s another fetishistic expression of male sexual drive.)  I don’t know how much distress it causes the few who actually feel this dysmorphia acutely, or whether outcomes for sex “reassignment” for that small group differ from the more general case (assuming my assumptions above are correct).

    So, as I say, I’m undecided about so-called sex-change surgery. I think it’s easy to make a case that deliberately crippling someone is just wrong, that doctors shouldn’t do it, and that the person requesting it is psychologically compromised and a danger to himself or herself. While I think people with serious sexual dysmorphia are also psychologically compromised, it isn’t as clear to me that it is always wrong to cater to their peculiar problem. I think I’d want to know a little more about particular cases before reaching that conclusion.

    (Having said that, I do think that people with any kind of dysmorphia should seek counseling first, and surgery rarely, and only after exhausting other options.)

    • #44
  15. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    My suspicion is that this is also quite rare, but that it’s a trending fad right now thanks to all the attention we give it.

    I’m not so sure, Hank. We have a lot of different groups promoting these actions, particularly with children. Unless highly regarded groups, such as the medical community, come out and say that surgery is not a substitute for this mental problem, I fear it will continue.

    • #45
  16. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    So, as I say, I’m undecided about so-called sex-change surgery. I think it’s easy to make a case that deliberately crippling someone is just wrong, that doctors shouldn’t do it, and that the person requesting it is psychologically compromised and a danger to himself or herself.

    Well, I’m glad we have clarity. However, I think you underestimate the permanent damage (one might even call it “crippling”) caused by sex-change surgery. There are 16-year-old girls having double mastectomies to transition to “males” (not even accounting for the hormone horror). Have you ever met a breast cancer patient whose had a double mastectomy? It involves months of physical therapy and, often, permanent pain.

    It is appalling to me that any doctor would perform such an elective surgery and that our medical community even allows it.  This isn’t like getting a nose job.

    Freedom is for excellence, not for indulging every last disturbed person’s delusions. It is not compassionate to join in the lie. Once begun, where will it stop?

    • #46
  17. Merrijane Inactive
    Merrijane
    @Merrijane

    dnewlander (View Comment):
    Words have gender. People have sex.

    As a former English major and editor, I know that’s the way it used to be. But language and word meanings evolve, and “gender” as it is widely used today no longer only applies to words—perhaps because in English, gender never really applied to words anyway.

    However, I resist the current movement toward conflating “gender” with “sex” because it removes an important distinction between how people view themselves and what they are genetically.

    • #47
  18. Merrijane Inactive
    Merrijane
    @Merrijane

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I would guess that most cases are men who are sexually aroused by the thought of appearing to be women

    This may be, but these cases probably don’t go for a complete sexual reassignment surgery. Because that would, after all, remove their ability to be sexually aroused. I suspect this is the reason for the whole “women can have male genitalia” argument and the desire to allow them not to have to have surgery to change their sex on licenses.

    • #48
  19. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Merrijane (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I would guess that most cases are men who are sexually aroused by the thought of appearing to be women

    This may be, but these cases probably don’t go for a complete sexual reassignment surgery. Because that would, after all, remove their ability to be sexually aroused. I suspect this is the reason for the whole “women can have male genitalia” argument and the desire to allow them not to have to have surgery to change their sex on licenses.

    You can always tell a MTF transgender from a real woman because they’re the only ones who voluntarily (not for pay) dress in pantyhose, stiletto heels, and corsets. One of the first thing women liberated themselves from was uncomfortable clothing.

    • #49
  20. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    My suspicion is that this is also quite rare, but that it’s a trending fad right now thanks to all the attention we give it.

    I’m not so sure, Hank. We have a lot of different groups promoting these actions, particularly with children. Unless highly regarded groups, such as the medical community, come out and say that surgery is not a substitute for this mental problem, I fear it will continue.

    Susan, I probably wasn’t clear in my comment. I meant that I suspect that people who truly feel acute psychological distress about their sexual dysmorphia are probably actually rare, but that it’s the fashion right now to claim some kind of alternative sexual identity. I think most people who self-identify as “trans” are attention seekers caught up in a faddish game — and encouraged by a growing and self-righteous community of wannabe victims.

    Merrijane (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I would guess that most cases are men who are sexually aroused by the thought of appearing to be women

    This may be, but these cases probably don’t go for a complete sexual reassignment surgery.

    Merrijane, I’ve tried to do some casual research in the past and found it hard to get numbers related to “trans” issues. I’ve read that these individuals are, by a wide margin, predominately male. I’d expect that: pretty much everything to do with sex (except being paid for it) is male-dominated, because sex is a much stronger driver for men than for women. But I suspect you’re correct, that most self-identified “trans” men don’t actually get surgery. I also suspect that most of them aren’t actually confused about their sexual identity, but rather are indulging a sexual fantasy.

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    Well, I’m glad we have clarity.

    WC, you and I certainly agree about many — perhaps most — cases, and I agree that it’s appalling that the medical community is willing to cater to people for whom counseling and a few more years of life experience would probably be most beneficial. As I’ve suggested, I think most of the “trans” movement is a blend of faddish self-indulgence and ginned-up hysteria — so much so that I avoid using the “LGBT” acronym: the first three letters describe actual sexual preferences; the last is largely a farce. In my opinion.

    • #50
  21. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    You can always tell a MTF transgender from a real woman because they’re the only ones who voluntarily (not for pay) dress in pantyhose, stiletto heels, and corsets. One of the first thing women liberated themselves from was uncomfortable clothing.

    No kidding! And going to elastic waistbands and sneakers–yes!

    • #51
  22. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    Merrijane (View Comment):

    dnewlander (View Comment):
    Words have gender. People have sex.

    As a former English major and editor, I know that’s the way it used to be. But language and word meanings evolve, and “gender” as it is widely used today no longer only applies to words—perhaps because in English, gender never really applied to words anyway.

    I sometimes think language devolves. Words parroted by people who can’t make distinctions are soon rendered vague.

    • #52
  23. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    . . . but medical professionals should be prohibited from mutilating healthy human tissues for any reason. First, do no harm.

    But you cannot do no harm without taking the person’s mental health into consideration too.  There used to be a thorough regimen of mental evaluation and treatment prior to even the beginning of hormone therapy.  Now, the pipeline has been greased, and a large number of post-op transsexuals still have mental issues upstairs.

    There is one man who physically transitioned all the way, found being female wasn’t right for him after all, then transitioned back.  (No word on whether they kept you-know-what on ice for a while after the initial surgery.)  Anyway, this guy has become an advocate for treating people who want to be the opposite sex (or think they are) for mental illness.

    • #53
  24. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Additional food for thought:

    Many of our friends have adopted children from Russia as we did.  One couple we know (had lunch with them a week ago) adopted a little boy, who from the beginning exhibited a preference (for lack of a better word) for all things female – dolls, clothes, you name it.  As he grew older, he underwent all the evaluations and ended up going through the process.  He is now a drop-dead gorgeous “she”, is going to college, and is living a normal life as a woman.

    It wasn’t easy for her to undergo the process here in South Carolina, but I think there are other parts of the country where you can find a signup sheet for the operation in the doctor’s office, no questions asked.

    • #54
  25. Ralphie Inactive
    Ralphie
    @Ralphie

    ” A lawsuit accuses a school district of breaking a state law in 2007 when it stopped letting Nicole Maines use the girls’ bathroom and required to her use a staff bathroom after a student’s grandfather complained. Maines was born a boy.”

    To point out the obvious is complaining.

    • #55
  26. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Stad (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    . . . but medical professionals should be prohibited from mutilating healthy human tissues for any reason. First, do no harm.

    But you cannot do no harm without taking the person’s mental health into consideration too. There used to be a thorough regimen of mental evaluation and treatment prior to even the beginning of hormone therapy. Now, the pipeline has been greased, and a large number of post-op transsexuals still have mental issues upstairs.

    There is one man who physically transitioned all the way, found being female wasn’t right for him after all, then transitioned back. (No word on whether they kept you-know-what on ice for a while after the initial surgery.) Anyway, this guy has become an advocate for treating people who want to be the opposite sex (or think they are) for mental illness.

    I think you made my point, Stad. Surgeons should not be cutting up bodies when the problem is in the mind.

    • #56
  27. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Stad (View Comment):
    Additional food for thought:

    Many of our friends have adopted children from Russia as we did. One couple we know (had lunch with them a week ago) adopted a little boy, who from the beginning exhibited a preference (for lack of a better word) for all things female – dolls, clothes, you name it. As he grew older, he underwent all the evaluations and ended up going through the process. He is now a drop-dead gorgeous “she”, is going to college, and is living a normal life as a woman.

    It wasn’t easy for her to undergo the process here in South Carolina, but I think there are other parts of the country where you can find a signup sheet for the operation in the doctor’s office, no questions asked.

    Stad, I’ve been thinking about your comment here. I realized that it doesn’t change my mind, and it’s difficult to come to that decision. Mutilating a person’s body doesn’t make mutilation right. When the surgery is first done, there’s no way to know how it will turn out. In the case of the boy who was adopted, it “worked out” for him. There are probably others for whom it works out, too. That doesn’t make it the right thing to do. Life gives us many challenges and limitations: physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual. We can take those on with our whole being–but I don’t think it’s right to desecrate our being, so to speak, to make those challenges go away.

    • #57
  28. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    I think you made my point, Stad. Surgeons should not be cutting up bodies when the problem is in the mind.

    And my point is there are problems in the mind that cannot be fixed through therapy alone, thus surgery becomes a last ditch effort.  As shown by the statistics, it is not completely successful in every case.  The real discussion then becomes, do we stop surgery altogether because it’s not 100% successful, or do we screw over the people for whom surgery would provide comfort?

    • #58
  29. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    Dennis Prager had a conservative psychiatrist on his show that wanted everyone to know that if people really have gender dysphoria they suffer like hell.

    • #59
  30. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    That doesn’t make it the right thing to do.

    And I would argue it doesn’t necessarily make it the wrong thing to do, either.

    When you look back at the long history of medicine and psychology, there have been procedures and theories that made sense at the time, but were abandoned when more information became available.

    Take leeches for example.  Bloodletting (either with leeches or simple bleeding through a tube) used to be thought of as the cure for everything, but was abandoned when we figured out removing blood was making whatever illness worse.  However, leeches have made a minor comeback, in use to help restore circulation things such as in reattachment surgery.

    We may discover a better why of dealing with the problem in the future, but we are where we are now, so we have to deal with it the best we can.

    • #60
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