The foolishness coming forth from the gender theory folks is like the endless parade of clowns coming out of that tiny car at the circus. How many more can there be? When will it stop?
A recent Washington Post column from Monica Hesse tells the tale of an almost-three-year-old Naya and her/his/their parents who’ve taken the wonderfully enlightened approach of letting her/him/they decide her/his/they’s own gender. Like the clowns, we lose count of how many times we’ve heard of such parents.
But those stories are usually presented as novelty. This one is presented as a completely sensible thing to do from a seemingly rational and thoughtful writer from a major national newspaper.
Hesse, an award-winning journalist, tells this story as if it’s not only reasonable, but commendable and forward-thinking. A serious editor at a major paper of record—not The Onion—deemed it worthy of their precious real estate. Both assumed their readers would find it enlightening for their own parenting. Three strikes.
Let me break the story down for you. Naya is almost three years old. She/he/them is being raised by two guys, Jeremy and Bryan. The adults know the sex on Naya’s birth certificate, but that’s their secret. Not even Naya will know. They believe her real gender exists in her mind, not on a major medical and government document. Jeremy and Bryan are presented as wise and brave parents, the kind any child would be fortunate to have.
Please Admire Our Descent Into Insanity
Hesse explains Naya’s two dads “didn’t publicly share Naya’s birth-certificate sex.” You see, sometimes parents and medical staff just look for a penis or vagina on the baby and mindlessly sign the kid up as male or female based on this cursory assessment. Gender theory tells us this method, which has served all cultures at all times in all places pretty well since the beginning of man, can be simplistic and deceptive.
So Jeremy and Bryan posted the following announcement on their Facebook page: “If you interact with our kid, please make an effort to use Naya’s name, rather than a gendered pronoun.” This is because “much of our culture and many of our traditions are based on telling people (directly and indirectly) what they can and can’t do, or should and shouldn’t do, based on their gender rather than their capabilities.”
Why does this matter? Well, Jeremy explains, with equal parts compassion and insight, “And we know this has tremendously negative consequences for both kids and adults.” It makes one wonder how many of Hesse’s readers will see Jeremy and Bryan with the admiration she does. How many will find this parenting approach admirable or asinine?
Thus, do such stories help or hurt the gender redefinition cause? It’s one thing for “progressives” to support the cause in theory. It’s wholly another when they see how it actually presents itself in the real lives of children. Gender theorists and their media enablers don’t seem to appreciate just how wacky their basic assumptions sound to everyday people regardless of where they fall on the political spectrum.
Remember that Thing About Being the Party of Science?
These gender gadflies live in a make-believe world that is not only at odds with reality, it often stands against it. One of the most brilliant and celebrated neuropsychiatrists in the world is Allan Schore, a member of the clinical faculty at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. He doesn’t suffer fools lightly.
In a major 2017 article in the Infant Mental Health Journal on how boys’ neurobiology and neuroendocrinology is very distinct from that of their sisters, Schore laments how gender studies in developmental psychology have “remained divorced from and frequently antithetical to biology.” In other words, the downy stay-puffed softness of gender theory is proudly unattached from the rock-hard sciences of biology, and often directly contrary to it.
He is absolutely right. Contemporary gender theory is pure ideology. It is not informed by any biological science. It’s never been close enough to science to catch a cold. Science is here. Gender theory is over there. These are two very different things that are not on speaking terms.
Gender Theory Is Hilariously Self-Contradicting
We see some of the glaring contradictions of gender theory in Hesse’s article. This happens when one tries to redefine what is real. Let me point out just a few.
If gender theory had a Nicene Creed, the first line its faithful must confess is that there are more than two genders. The wonderfully diverse spectrum of the rainbow and all that. Let’s see how this works itself out in Naya’s story.
Early in her life, her legal guardians came upon an idea. What if, Hesse tells us, Jeremy and Bryan “didn’t tell Naya whether Naya was a boy or girl? What if they just let their kid decide?” So the men “gave Naya clothing from both sides of the Target aisle, and boy dolls and girl dolls…”
Are you catching the glaring inconsistency here? Why confine Naya to only boy and girl clothes and toys? Why should Naya be kept from exploring and sampling the accoutrements of all the other supposed genders, especially by two forward-thinking men who have moved beyond the flat-earth binary?
Why didn’t the critical-thinking Hesse challenge Bryan and Jeremy on confining the child in such a repressive way? Who is there to speak up for poor Naya and her right to all the different options? When you spin reality, you’d better have a good memory. Hesse and these men don’t.
That’s Not the Only Glaring Contradiction
The next fundamental tenet of gender theory is that male and female don’t really exist. They are merely social and artificial constructs. We’re all just people, and it’s only society that dictates we become this or that as male or female.
Hesse asks the question these brave parents are pressing all of us to consider: “What would it look like to become your true self, if the only constraints were your own happiness?” Elsewhere she asks “How do you raise boys and girls to be whatever they truly actually are” (emphasis in original)?
Pay no attention to the fact that she just gendered the poor children in her question about letting them discover what they actually are before they informed her. Note some key words Hesse employs here: “true self” and “actually are.” Do you see another stunning contradiction?
If you assume you are naturally male or female from the womb, you are deceived. You are sadly assuming an artificial construct is actual. But if you choose to be male or female, well that’s your “true self,” the thing you actually are! Everyone else must not only see it the way you do, but respect it. Woe to anyone who refuses.
It’s exactly what we saw with Bruce Jenner. He is only his true authentic self as Caitlyn. In gender theory, subjective self-perception always tells the truth while our objective, physical bodies can lie. Psychology and biology both strongly disagree, from their very foundation. Even more curiously, these are people who almost certainly believe there is no god, and material reality is all there is. If that’s the case, however, then how can a purely physical mind detach itself from its organically, biologically connected body and genetics?
Pressure towards Sex Stereotypes Is Highly Overrated
These two men wanted desperately to protect Naya from one threat: “Would Naya … feel pressured to conform to the stereotype of a birth certificate’s sex designation?” First, Hesse wants us to agree that Naya’s medically determined sex designation is as thin as a piece of paper. Not only can the information our birth certificates provide be mistaken, it can actually be harmful!
Second, she most certainly would not be pressured in that way, unless they are going to adopt her out to the Little House on the Prairie. Who thinks Jeremy and Bryan would allow anyone else to pressure her toward gender stereotypes? Let’s get ahold of ourselves for a moment. Is this even a fear in the first place? How many of us would judge a parent as good if he demanded his boy or girl squeeze into supposed gender stereotypes? They’re called “stereotypes” for a reason and it’s what makes them so distasteful: oversimplified caricatures that contradict the everyday.
I work at Focus on the Family, and have for 25 years. We are as traditional about male and female as anyone. But we have parents here with kids who do all kinds of things, and proudly. I don’t know of anyone here, among my friends or at my church, who forces his kids into rigid gender roles. They encourage their kids to be what God made them to be.
One of our leading partners is a man with a long and distinguished military career. His adult son is a hard-core ballet dancer and that raises concern for no one here. Why should it? That son works here and has for more than a decade. He’s a very good man, no less of one than his father.
An executive assistant for many years proudly featured on her desk a picture of her daughter standing in front of the C-17 military cargo plane she pilots. Not one of her co-workers here believe her daughter, or any woman, would do much better in the kitchen. We all think she’s awesome and would be similarly proud of our daughters, be they pilots, astronauts, surgeons, police officers, army generals, martial artists, senators, or full-time mothers.
Think about Sarah Palin, yesterday’s darling of the religious right. She loves shooting, can handle any-size gun with gusto, and can field dress a moose. Not even the most right-leaning person thought her place was in the laundry room. No one in our camp wishes Margaret Thatcher had been just a little more dainty and domestic. Same with Condoleezza Rice. For all the talk of the dangers of repressive gender stereotypes, they ironically exist primarily in the worried imaginations of the gender theory folks.
Parents Freak Out Over Basic Reality
Deciding her sex was not the big deal to Naya as it was to her two dads. The resolve of Hesse’s story is really quite anticlimactic. Naya was routinely settling down for naptime. She unceremoniously announced to Jeremy that her stuffed animal, “Doggy,” was a boy and should be referred to as he.
Well and good, Jeremy thought. Then he asked, “What do you want me to call you?” Let’s pause on this a moment. It’s one of the most important questions of her life, so big that these guys had to make a huge deal about it, publically instructing every friend, family member, and acquaintance to avoid the subject at every turn.
Never mind that Naya is not yet even three years old. Never mind that Bryan, still at work, would miss her monumental declaration of self-actualization. Did Jeremy consider that Naya might possibly have felt unduly pressured by the suddenness of the question? And just before naptime! Well, what did she say?
She answered simply, as if she were choosing a cookie or the shoes she wanted to wear. Naya said she wanted to be called “she and her and a girl.” Jeremy asked her if that was just for today or for always. Naya said, “Today, tomorrow and when I get to be grown-up, I want to be most a girl.”
It Would Be Funny If It Weren’t So Serious
Now get this grand finale. For all the drama, Jeremy said he would have been happy with any choice, because “there is no right answer.” Really? If I’ve been paying attention, it seems as if there is indeed a right answer. It’s the gender Naya supposedly is in her mind. Wasn’t that what this whole thing was about? None of the adults in this story seem to appreciate the irony-rich soil they are digging in here. It’s clear they haven’t thought this through.
So, it must be said and said crisply without apology. These two men raising Naya are seriously deceived. They are creating an alternate reality, not for make-believe fun, but for the very foundation of how this poor child will understand herself at her most basic level.
Yes, one’s sex doesn’t exist only in one’s genitalia. But it doesn’t exist solely in the mind either. It is present in every last piece of DNA in every cell of our very complex bodies. No dogma can wish this fact away. Our bodies don’t tell lies. Gender theory does, and we would say they are authentically silly ones if the consequences were not so serious.
Hesse and her editors, while all putting themselves out there as intelligent people, are completely taken by mere ideology. It does not exist under any microscope, in any laboratory or medical imaging machine. It is not only at odds with basic biological science, but as Schore explained, antithetical to it.
Live in that make-believe world if you choose, but the moment you bring children into it, your work as a parent and standing as a responsible adult must be called into serious question. A sane society must adopt that position. The moment you virtue-shame anyone who refuses to play along with your delusion, you’ve become one of the most extreme types of fundamentalist. It’s not what reasonable people do. This madness needs to stop.