Dear Mr. French,
You have no idea who I am, but I’m a longtime David French fan. I appreciate your intellectual honesty, your willingness to risk scrutiny to stand against your own tribe in defense of truth, and the important nuance to which you routinely invite your readers. I shared a cab to the airport with you once about five years ago. It was a major highlight in my life as an aspiring writer.
Throughout the years, I’ve enthusiastically shared your articles. I nodded in emphatic agreement when you denounced Donald Trump’s appalling rhetoric. I gave you a standing ovation in my living room when you told the truth too many wanted to ignore about Roy Moore.
As a rape survivor, I think I may have actually cried when I read your article about how the church at large is failing to adequately address the sexual abuse epidemic. And I wanted to pull my hair out right alongside you when the (completely predictable and preventable) Jan. 6, 2021 disaster struck.
I am in full agreement with you that the church and the political right have been negligent about addressing the rot in our own camp. I agree that we have got to stop demonizing every hint of deviation from the approved party line. In all that, I’m fully on your side.
But this week I read your piece “Against the ‘Groomer’ Smear,” and my heart sank.
‘Groomer’ Isn’t Just a Smear
I read every word hoping I could find a way to agree with your perspective, and in some areas, I could. I was tracking with you on some of the things you had to say about Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson and the problematic nature of some of the ambiguous text in Florida House Bill 1557. You raised some good points, and I hope people consider them.
But then you got to the part about sexual grooming in today’s public schools. You called the claims of grooming “absurd.” You mocked the people making them. You spelled out, in vivid detail, the components of true sexual grooming, and you declared, in no uncertain terms, that this is not happening through today’s school curriculum.
I don’t know how else to say this, but, Mr. French, you are wrong. I don’t know if maybe you’re just so frustrated with the right’s unwillingness to contend with the rot in our own house that it’s rendered you unable to consider the possibility that any of our expressed concerns could be rooted in legitimacy, or what. But I can tell you that your choice to use your platform and influence to perpetuate this type of ignorance is devastating to those of us who’ve spent our entire lives defending kids from the specific types of grooming you refuse to acknowledge.
By way of explanation, I spent the first 10 years of my life being groomed by a pedophile. I am intimately familiar with the tactics and methods, all of which are brazenly present in much of today’s curriculum. I’ve also spent the past seven years on the frontlines of the great sexual identity debate, fielding horror story after horror story from parents, teachers, therapists, and the poor souls whose lives and bodies have been devastated by this insidious ideology.
Exploiting Kids’ Vulnerability and Sterilizing Them
I’ve noticed that you tend to address the trans issue as sort of a fringe thing that’s not really worthy of collective attention. I’m here to plead with you to reconsider. It’s infinitely worse than you seem to realize.
In kindergarten classrooms across the country, teachers are reading books like Michael Hall’s “Red” to five-year-old students. The book teaches these kids it’s possible to be born in “the wrong body.” You don’t think this is grooming?
You don’t think that telling them this lie and planting this seed of doubt exploits their vulnerability and primes them for future insecurity to be preyed upon by pharmaceutical companies that benefit from their lifelong dependence on puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones that will render them permanently sterile?
I’m going to pause there and repeat this. Permanently sterile. We are chemically castrating children before they’re even legally old enough to pierce their ears without parental consent. Shouldn’t the wholesale sterilization of children give you pause? It’s a human rights atrocity. And a sexual crime.
It’s well and good to rail against the child abuse at Kanakuk Christian Camps. But how can anyone turn a blind eye to what’s happening here in our own backyards? How can you pooh-pooh this or mock the people trying to fight it?
Manipulating Kids’ Trust Behind Parents’ Backs
Guess where these kids are getting their referrals (without parental notification, mind you) for these drugs that will sterilize them? They’re getting them largely from school counselors. One of the grooming components you mentioned, Mr. French, was “trust development and keeping secrets.”
Did you know that these counselors foster the trust of these students, often encouraging them to use alternate names? That they keep this information from the parents? That they convince the students they are more trustworthy than their parents? That the official American School Counselor Association has actually published a guide directing counselors to hide information from parents? Are you seeing the grooming yet?
Do you think sexual violation has to happen at the hands of an individual as opposed to a corporation? We’ve got 13-year-old girls lining up for elective double mastectomies because they’ve been groomed to believe their happiness lies on the other side of self-mutilation. Here’s a snapshot of the grotesque medical scandal currently going on in the United States, with no major media scrutiny, in one single chart from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
In 2020, even amid global lockdowns, cosmetic gender surgeries continued to rise. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 8,548 breast amputations were completed in 2020 on young women and girls, some of them likely minors, and many of them likely dealing with one or more mental health diagnoses. This constitutes a 15 percent increase from 2019. If you divide 8,548 by 261 (business days in a year) that is 32.7 breast amputations per day.
In the United Kingdom, the advocacy group TransgenderTrend documented that in approximately a decade referrals of girls to the “Gender Identity Development Service” skyrocketed, seeing a more than 4,000 percent increase. Abigail Shrier documents in her stunning book “Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters” that the number of females who underwent “gender surgeries” in the United States from 2016 to 2017 quadrupled.
Yes, you’re reading that correctly. You don’t think the adults who encouraged this have participated in sexual violence against these girls? As a journalist friend put it, American public schools have become a “school to sterilization pipeline.”
We’ve got story after heartbreaking story of parents who’ve lost their kids to the gender cult specifically because a school employee encouraged the child to express a secret identity at school without ever telling the child’s parents about it. No grooming here, though?
I personally know a couple who had to move to a different state to save their daughter from the gender cult. They were in danger of losing custody of their daughter for refusing to treat her gender dysphoria with hormones and pronouns. She was groomed into her cognitive dissonance at her local school. Will you tell these desperate parents that they don’t know what they’re talking about? That they’re wrong about the grooming that almost killed their daughter?
Listen Before Brushing Off People’s Concerns
You and I can agree that some of the most vocal spokespeople on the right side of this issue say some really cringe-worthy things. We can agree that so much of political rhetoric is destructively hyperbolic and manipulative. But even a broken clock is right twice a day. And when it comes to the grooming inherent in the gender cult’s indoctrination, if anything, the rhetoric is not urgent or demonstrative enough.
I’m saddened to say that reading your piece made me feel a lot like I did when I was younger trying to get people to care about the abuse I had suffered. I felt like you were telling me I was overreacting, that the justice I cared about pursuing was small beans in the big picture, that I needed to stop being so dramatic and find something more important to care about.
Mr. French, until you’ve sat with these parents, until you’ve worked to find a therapist to treat dysphoria without hormones (which is like trying to find a kidney on the black market, mind you), until you’ve heard a broken young woman tell you about the kids she’ll never have through a voice that will forever sound like a pubescent teenage boy because of the medical interventions the school experts encouraged her to take, until you’ve actually cared enough to hear the stories or examine the curriculum or analyze the trends or investigate the schools, I’m sorry, but you haven’t earned the right to make such certain claims about the grooming.
It’s infinitely worse than you think.