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?

Published in Culture
Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 81 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    • #61
  2. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    Yes, the two procedures vary widely in degree, but the underlying point is the same.

    BTW, do you consider cosmetic surgery “body mutilation”?  What about surgery for a cleft palate?  The body is “mutilated” in the process.  It’s a matter of perspective.

    • #62
  3. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    Fair enough.

    But, also to be fair, “body mutilation” is a loaded term for the kind of reconstructive surgery we’re talking about. [As I see Stad just pointed out.] I remain quite skeptical of the wisdom of performing surgical (or even hormonal) modifications in purely psychological cases, but I’m not sufficiently confident in my skepticism to flatly condemn it in every case. I just don’t have that strong a sense of the degree to which a truly sexually dysmorphic individual is harmed by his or her psychological problem. (And, one more time, I think the truly dysmorphic are very rare, and that most who claim some kind of dysmorphia are kidding themselves and/or us.)

    I do think the modern trans movement is ludicrous and self-indulgent.

    • #63
  4. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    Fair enough.

    But, also to be fair, “body mutilation” is a loaded term for the kind of reconstructive surgery we’re talking about. [As I see Stad just pointed out.] I remain quite skeptical of the wisdom of performing surgical (or even hormonal) modifications in purely psychological cases, but I’m not sufficiently confident in my skepticism to flatly condemn it in every case. I just don’t have that strong a sense of the degree to which a truly sexually dysmorphic individual is harmed by his or her psychological problem. (And, one more time, I think the truly dysmorphic are very rare, and that most who claim some kind of dysmorphia are kidding themselves and/or us.)

    I do think the modern trans movement is ludicrous and self-indulgent.

    Point taken. Mutilation is a loaded term, Hank, but it’s also precise. I understand where @stad is coming from. It would be very persuasive to see a person who comes through the gender surgery successfully; it makes you wonder about what is appropriate or not. I don’t have a problem with cosmetic surgery (but I’m not interested); I just think it’s silly. Cleft palate is correcting a clear malformation (if that’s the right word) and making it comply with a normal palate. I don’t think all these surgeries are in the same category. Changing one’s sex is a fundamental change in a person’s very being, and that’s my problem. None of us wants to see these folks suffer. But to remedy something that stems from a psychological issue is another thing.

    • #64
  5. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    Fair enough.

    But, also to be fair, “body mutilation” is a loaded term for the kind of reconstructive surgery we’re talking about. [As I see Stad just pointed out.] I remain quite skeptical of the wisdom of performing surgical (or even hormonal) modifications in purely psychological cases, but I’m not sufficiently confident in my skepticism to flatly condemn it in every case. I just don’t have that strong a sense of the degree to which a truly sexually dysmorphic individual is harmed by his or her psychological problem. (And, one more time, I think the truly dysmorphic are very rare, and that most who claim some kind of dysmorphia are kidding themselves and/or us.)

    I do think the modern trans movement is ludicrous and self-indulgent.

    Point taken. Mutilation is a loaded term, Hank, but it’s also precise. I understand where @stad is coming from. It would be very persuasive to see a person who comes through the gender surgery successfully; it makes you wonder about what is appropriate or not. I don’t have a problem with cosmetic surgery (but I’m not interested); I just think it’s silly. Cleft palate is correcting a clear malformation (if that’s the right word) and making it comply with a normal palate. I don’t think all these surgeries are in the same category. Changing one’s sex is a fundamental change in a person’s very being, and that’s my problem. None of us wants to see these folks suffer. But to remedy something that stems from a psychological issue is another thing.

    Susan, I understand. And I agree with you in the vast majority of cases. It’s the hypothetical handful who suffer extreme psychological distress that can’t be remedied through any others means about which I’m thus far agnostic. I’ll leave it at that, since I don’t feel confident that I understand enough about the plight of this (again, hypothetical) subset to hold a strong opinion one way or the other.

     

    • #65
  6. Jim Beck Inactive
    Jim Beck
    @JimBeck

    Morning Stad,

    What a complex problem.  There are people who deny that a limb of part of their body is their own, and there are patients who wish to have the parts which they feel are not their own taken off, like an arm or leg.  A difference between these people and the trans people is that no one in society at large suggests that the people who are denying their arms or legs are on to something.  We feel compassion toward those who are so confused and distressed about their body enough to have parts removed.  We may also feel that if folks have the means to fly to somewhere to be surgically changed that we may not like it, but it is their arm, etc.  However, if a doc removed an arm from a patient to alleviate suffering (let’s stipulate that it did alleviate the suffering), that doc would be thought to have acted contrary to his obligations to the patient and the community.  So in the cases of the trans surgeries, there may be cases where the patient does improve, but shouldn’t we think that the doc has broken faith with what should be good practice?  Johns Hopkins was the first hospital in America to do sexual reassignment surgery (in the 60’s), they stopped because those patients who had the surgery had overall worse outcomes than those who did not, especially suicide.  Also by our acceptance of the trans choices, we are suggesting that they are on to something about the nature of self and sexuality.  Our acceptance of this idiosyncratic confusion is harmful to ourselves and society at large, even if we think we are acting out of compassion for the suffering of those who are confused.  It is hard to know how to respond lovingly to someone who is mentally confused, especially if they are someone you love.

    • #66
  7. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Jim Beck (View Comment):
    Morning Stad,

    What a complex problem. There are people who deny that a limb of part of their body is their own, and there are patients who wish to have the parts which they feel are not their own taken off, like an arm or leg. A difference between these people and the trans people is that no one in society at large suggests that the people who are denying their arms or legs are on to something. We feel compassion toward those who are so confused and distressed about their body enough to have parts removed. We may also feel that if folks have the means to fly to somewhere to be surgically changed that we may not like it, but it is their arm, etc. However, if a doc removed an arm from a patient to alleviate suffering (let’s stipulate that it did alleviate the suffering), that doc would be thought to have acted contrary to his obligations to the patient and the community. So in the cases of the trans surgeries, there may be cases where the patient does improve, but shouldn’t we think that the doc has broken faith with what should be good practice? Johns Hopkins was the first hospital in America to do sexual reassignment surgery (in the 60’s), they stopped because those patients who had the surgery had overall worse outcomes than those who did not, especially suicide. Also by our acceptance of the trans choices, we are suggesting that they are on to something about the nature of self and sexuality. Our acceptance of this idiosyncratic confusion is harmful to ourselves and society at large, even if we think we are acting out of compassion for the suffering of those who are confused. It is hard to know how to respond lovingly to someone who is mentally confused, especially if they are someone you love.

    An eloquent and compassionate description, @jimbeck. Thank you.

    • #67
  8. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Stad (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):
    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.

    I hear you, Stad, and understand your point. I’d have to say, however, that body mutilation is a far cry from using leeches. Just sayin’. . .

    Yes, the two procedures vary widely in degree, but the underlying point is the same.

    BTW, do you consider cosmetic surgery “body mutilation”? What about surgery for a cleft palate? The body is “mutilated” in the process. It’s a matter of perspective.

    No. Cleft palate is a deprivation of a healthy palate. That is something medical professionals have as their whole purpose for existence — to restore to wholeness and health (or as near as possible) something which is lacking. Cosmetic surgery could be said to address a lack of aesthetics, although there is an element of deception in that, too, especially when the “fixed” attract a mate and have kids who inherit the undesirable trait. I think many have found the “work” they’ve had done regrettable in the long run.

    Some people have conditions (which cause major suffering and even death) which are not fixable. My daughter is one of them — she has a spontaneous mutation (not inherited) causing a serious neurological condition. No one is ever going to “fix” this in her lifetime, although treatments for symptoms have dramatically improved recently which will prevent the worst disfiguring effects that might occur.

    My objection is to doctors willing to mutilate that which is otherwise healthy in service to a lie. No XY-man is ever going to be a woman and no XX-woman is ever going to be a man, no matter how much cutting occurs.  When faced with something physically incurable (although, in this case, perhaps, psychologically treatable), what is “best” for the sufferer? I would say self-acceptance and trust in God.

    That boy who became a “drop-dead gorgeous” woman is living a lie. My guess is he’s happy with the results at the moment, but it can’t last. Even self-deception is eventually overcome by the truth.

    In the meantime, I have low regard for doctors who kill and maim, including abortionists and sex-“change” scammers. Practitioners of false promises.

    • #68
  9. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    G. Gordon Liddy says that tattoos are self-mutilation and therefore a sign of low self-esteem.

    • #69
  10. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    RufusRJones (View Comment):
    G. Gordon Liddy says that tattoos are self-mutilation and therefore a sign of low self-esteem.

    Well, then G. Gordon Liddy isn’t going to get to see my butt dragon!

    ~flings self on bed to weep~

    • #70
  11. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    TBA (View Comment):

    RufusRJones (View Comment):
    G. Gordon Liddy says that tattoos are self-mutilation and therefore a sign of low self-esteem.

    Well, then G. Gordon Liddy isn’t going to get to see my butt dragon!

    ~flings self on bed to weep~

    Thanks, TBA. I needed a giggle.

    • #71
  12. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I remain quite skeptical of the wisdom of performing surgical (or even hormonal) modifications in purely psychological cases, but I’m not sufficiently confident in my skepticism to flatly condemn it in every case.

    I agree.  I think if the subjects were scrutinized even further (or if our knowledge were more advanced), the actual numbers of patients requiring surgery would drop dramatically.

    Oh, and the left would still demand “bathroom choice” . . .

    • #72
  13. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    But, also to be fair, “body mutilation” is a loaded term for the kind of reconstructive surgery we’re talking about. [As I see Stad just pointed out.]

    I agree.  The use of loaded terms tends to distract from the discussion.  We do it too, whenever some of us refer to doctors who perform abortions as ” baby killers” or “murderers”.  While I might personally believe such is the case, I never use those terms whenever I engage in an intellectual with a liberal – which is becoming rarer and rarer . . .

    • #73
  14. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Jim Beck (View Comment):
    There are people who deny that a limb of part of their body is their own, and there are patients who wish to have the parts which they feel are not their own taken off, like an arm or leg.

    I deliberately did not mention this type of mental illness because I felt it would cloud the debate.  To me, sexuality and the associated physical and mental aspects of it is a totally different thing from people who think their limbs are not their own, or are the cause of all their probelms, or whatever.

    At the risk of destroying my own argument, I believe folks who want their own limbs amputated are totally bonkers, and under no circumstances should they undergo the surgery.  Heck, enough of them go ahead and do it themselves . . .

    • #74
  15. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    TBA (View Comment):

    RufusRJones (View Comment):
    G. Gordon Liddy says that tattoos are self-mutilation and therefore a sign of low self-esteem.

    Well, then G. Gordon Liddy isn’t going to get to see my butt dragon!

    ~flings self on bed to weep~

    It’s time to start the healing process.  Please, we need a Butt-Dragon Tattoo post – with pics of course . . .

    • #75
  16. Jim Beck Inactive
    Jim Beck
    @JimBeck

    Afternoon Stad,

    I think you and I disagree about the nature of trans sexuality.  With the exception of those few with heraphroditism, humans are from conception male or female and from that start have different lives from their earliest development.   Folks may suffer under the confusion that they are in the wrong body, but this is a mental perception and not a physical reality.  There are no mismatches between gender and brains.  The problem is how do we affectionately live with confused people and how do we deal with confused folks in a society where we allow people  to do things to themselves which in the long run will be harmful.  Our conflicted society which strives to be nice or to be seen to be nice has added to the dismantling of our culture by giving the trans movement a credibility and and almost heroism to those confused about their sexuality.  We are encouraging confused people to imagine that their delusions have substance and that their efforts to right the biologic wrong are noble, this is a great wrong.

    • #76
  17. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Jim Beck (View Comment):
    There are no mismatches between gender and brains. The problem is how do we affectionately live with confused people and how do we deal with confused folks in a society where we allow people to do things to themselves which in the long run will be harmful.

    All I’m saying is that there are extreme cases where the confusion might be, or can only be, solved with surgery.  So maybe the underlying question is, “Are we doing enough in the psychological arena to ‘cure’ these people, and do we allow surgery in those we declare cannot be cured through psychological treatment?”

    • #77
  18. Eridemus Coolidge
    Eridemus
    @Eridemus

    Essentially the ACLU is telling the country how we must think, feel, and act.

    Isn’t this ALWAYS how liberals attack others and their (unenlightened) values? The bullying substitutes for law when they cannot change it, but gets even more strident when partially installed. I think this is done to ring and isolate holdouts & to prepare for further pushes.

    You want women and men to be ok with being different? Pray after a disaster without amending laws they dislike? You want to not appreciate a flood of foreign culture? You want to pack your kid a peanut butter sandwich? Then you don’t help the approved cause and they engineer a social atmosphere to say that you have no business thinking and feeling at odds with whatever they are pushing. Even when laws are not in place, your support is required to prepare for change…otherwise, your very thoughts are a threat to “the future.” And if they get their way, they stretch their ambitions still further with no defined end in sight.

    • #78
  19. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    Sometimes it seems right to be 100% against something, often because of the need for pushback against the 100% position of those who favor it.

    But a 95% position allows for both the possibility of being wrong and the possibility that sometimes one bad thing is less than the alternative.

    There are people mentioned earlier, who hate – for example – one of their limbs. Such people are obviously nuts. But it is a fact that some of them are able to function much better after they lose that limb. It is possible that in rare cases amputation as a last resort is superior to no resort and a life of agony.

     

    • #79
  20. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    TBA (View Comment):
    . It is possible that in rare cases amputation as a last resort is superior to no resort and a life of agony.

    As we’ve pointed out, it seems impossible to determine when and if this is the right step.

    • #80
  21. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    TBA (View Comment):
    . It is possible that in rare cases amputation as a last resort is superior to no resort and a life of agony.

    As we’ve pointed out, it seems impossible to determine when and if this is the right step.

    And do you really want doctors training for this sort of thing? My guess is they’re not going to be at the top of the class. Similar to abortionists.

    • #81
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.