One of the unique and wonderful things about the United States is that small states, ignored most of the time, can now and again set the big, important states on the straight and narrow path. South Dakota this week sent a bill to its governor that would require students to use the bathrooms and showers assigned to their birth genders.
While the coastal class clobbers bigoted South Dakota on social media, the parents of that state have spoken. Their representatives have accepted the time-honored definition of gender and defied the transgender mafia. That choice must be celebrated and defended.
Ten years ago, the idea that children’s bathrooms should be gender-based was generally taken for granted. Now it is a bigoted and outdated principle. But how did this happen? Was there some great scientific breakthrough that proved traditional concepts of gender had been debunked? Was some observation made, codified by peer review, that showed without question gender is not, and cannot be, determined at birth? In fact, no such discovery based on anything even approaching the scientific method has ever found any such thing.
The Trans Lobby Suppresses Research
Recently New York Magazine published a very long story about a respected sex researcher who had been fired for holding and practicing theories about gender dysphoria that may not be spoken anymore. In short, a kangaroo court “independent” investigation found Dr. Kenneth Zucker guilty. His crime was approaching childhood gender dysphoria as a condition most children overcome and urging parents to push their children toward their determined sex.
To Zucker’s opponents, mainly trans advocates, the treatments he provided at Toronto’s Gender Identity Clinic amounted to conversion therapy. They saw no difference between his scientifically based sex research and religious-based attempts to turn gay people straight. The problem with this analogy is that the majority of children who display gender dysphoria do not go on to transition to a different gender. Zucker was not converting anyone. He was working with children to determine if their feelings truly represented a desire to change gender, or if they could be handled without recourse to such a dramatic step.
For trans advocates this is heresy. Indeed, their preferred approach, known as “gender affirmation,” is to treat every child confused about his or her gender as if he or she will eventually transition to a new gender. These advocates are free to argue their position with facts and science, but that is not what is happening, as Zucker’s case shows.
The Center for Addiction and Mental Health, which operated the Gender Identity Center and was Zucker’s employer, bowed to pressure to launch an investigation into his work. But this was not an investigation in any real sense. Rather, it was a bald-faced attempt to destroy the career of a man who had dedicated his work to helping children.
As New York Magazine put it: “if you look closely at what really happened — if you read the review (which CAMH has now pulled off of its website), speak with the activists who effectively wrote large swaths of it, examine the scientific evidence, and talk to former GIC clinicians and the parents of patients they worked with, it’s hard not to come to an uncomfortable, politically incorrect conclusion: Zucker’s defenders are right. This was a show trial.”
Trans Advocates Place Politics Above Children
What must be understood is that these activists, less interested in science or the well-being of children than in their own bizarre delusions, are the same people fighting South Dakota’s new proposal. They believe gender is nothing more than a metaphysical state of mind—a religion of gender, if you will. These activists are willing to harm the mental well-being of children to justify their own belief system. These activists are willing to lie to destroy those who disagree with them.
South Dakota’s schools are not and should not be houses of trans advocate worship. There is no scientific basis upon which to conclude that a seven-year-old born a boy is actually a girl and should be treated as such. School districts, localities, and states do not have the expertise to help children suffering from gender confusion. Scientists like Dr. Zucker do. And his warning that pushing children into gender transition is dangerous should be taken very seriously.
Part of the problem is that when confused children are told that they are, in fact, a different gender, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Their parents, schools, and teachers become their advocates. They become the center of a civil rights struggle. But what happens, as is usually the case, when those children change their mind? What pressure do they feel to live up to the hero status foisted upon them by the trans advocate community?
Frankly, these trans advocates couldn’t care less. It is the job of such children to confirm their belief system, not the job of adults to protect vulnerable children. This is not about the kids; this is about men who want to live fairy tale lives as women. This is about adults who threaten to boycott the state of South Dakota for allowing boys and girls to have their own bathrooms.
Sadly, some Democrats in the South Dakota legislature are willing to accept this bribery. They actually argue that the well-being of their state’s children matters less than the income they get from people visiting Mount Rushmore. It is shameful that such a consideration should even be uttered in this context.
We Can’t Hide Behind Politeness Any More
Part of the reason trans advocates have been so successful in their attempts to redefine gender is that most people are uncomfortable with the entire discussion. It is far easier to simply live and let live, knowing that a person’s gender identity has little effect on you, than to actually tackle this complex issue. After all, most people wish to be polite. So they smile and nod, and use appropriate pronouns, never truly believing what they are saying.
But this luxury of politeness is one we can no longer afford. All of us must loudly and strongly support South Dakota’s brave efforts to put children first. It is bad enough that trans advocates will lie and cajole to destroy a respected scientist like Zucker. But it is far worse—unimaginable, in fact—that we should allow and encourage our children to suffer from delusions. South Dakota is right to refuse to sacrifice boys and girls on the altar of critical gender theory.
Will there be some children in South Dakota who are uncomfortable using the bathroom assigned to them? Possibly. But gender dysphoria is a serious and uncomfortable condition. Lying to children about their ability to know and understand their own gender at ages as young as 6 or 7 is wrong. Our schools must not be a party to these lies by affirming delusions.
Sadly, at the moment South Dakota is an outlier. While it strives to become the first state to protect children from transgender ideologues, many states are doing exactly the opposite. They are being praised to high heaven for their progressive stance. But this is why we have states. Luckily for us, one state is confounded by common sense and is refusing to bow to radical pressure.
Our children are not social experiments. And they certainly must never be so for radical activists obviously willing to undermine science. Like it or not, this is a fight that can no longer be ignored. A good place to start is by standing with South Dakota.
Copyright © 2016 The Federalist, a wholly independent division of FDRLST Media, All Rights Reserved.