Every parent reading this should immediately stop and go watch HBO’s “Transhood” (2020) documentary. It will enlighten, depress, and alarm you all at once, and it’s the best way to understand the crisis that’s happening with so many of America’s children.
The film follows four families in Kansas City, Missouri, all of which include a child who identifies as transgender. It takes place over five years. Two of the children, 12-year-old Jay (a girl who identifies as a boy) and 15-year-old Leena (the opposite), have been placed on hormone pharmaceuticals by their parents in order to suppress their natural puberty.
The other two, 7-year-old Avery (a boy who identifies as a girl) and 4-year-old Phoenix (the same) are not receiving hormone drugs but they are dressed in female clothing and referred to as girls. Avery’s hair is dyed purple and pink. Phoenix’s entire wardrobe is draped in rainbow.
In the most shocking scene, Leena, who wants his penis to more closely resemble a vagina (a procedure that literally involves splitting the phallus longways in half), visits a surgeon, Dr. Marci Bowers, who tells him, “The thing is, a penis is basically the same thing as a clitoris. Everything a girl has, a boy has and everything a boy has, a girl has.”
Bowers is a man who identifies as a woman. And he should immediately have his medical license revoked for lying to a child, encouraging him to permanently mutilate his sex organs.
But, if you can believe it, there are plenty of other confounding moments.
Avery, the 7-year-old, is very obviously used by his weird mother as a prop for her political activism. Avery is prostituted out on the cover of National Geographic, like an animal.
He’s also dragged to Washington, D.C., for a protest and to sign copies of an illustrated book, under his name, about being a transgender child. Avery hates all of it, and without a flicker of irony, his mother tells him, “The problem is you do approve things and then you change your mind.”
Avery: “I just don’t want to even have a book. I’ve done too much in this world to ruin my life enough and now everyone in this world is going to know if I sell my book, it’s going to get on the news along with me for, like, the 50th time at this point, and it’s just going to make my life worse.”
Avery’s mother: “A couple years ago you wanted people to know. But now?”
Avery: “Yeah, I did but that was a stupid, silly mistake and now I don’t.”
To that end, 4-year-old Phoenix, who begins the movie by wearing dresses and referring to himself as “a girl-boy,” ultimately reverts back to identifying as male. This boy’s father says early in the documentary, “I don’t really feel like Phoenix ever was a boy,” only to say later, “There’s a lot to it where I don’t know if [Phoenix’s mother] Molly or I made the right decisions.”
In another scene, the mother of 12-year-old Jay sobs because her insurance won’t cover her son’s hormone replacement shots. The doctor administering the treatment appears taken aback, because, she says, “Usually if something is medically necessary, insurance will cover it.”
Not a clue in sight, I guess.
To the contrary, the signs telling these parents that this is not okay are everywhere. Avery at one point says, “Why do I have to grow up? I just want to stay a kid.”
In another scene, 15-year-old Leena discusses a classmate, a boy, who broke up with her. “When I was dating Brian, it felt like an authentication,” she said. “I’m dating a straight man and he sees me as a woman and I was so excited because, like, that’s all I wanted.” She said that Brian eventually told her “that he was using me as a cover up because he was unsure of his identity in the sexual world.”
It’s a rude awakening to this young person — affirmed by his parents and medical providers that he’s not the sex he was born as — that “straight” boys are highly unlikely to view other biological males as female.
In another, a woman who identifies as a man is seen cutting the hair of teenage Jay, while explaining, “I’ve had a complete, total hysterectomy.”
Any sane person would feel compassion for both the children and for the confused parents. But only a stupid or sick person would believe that the best way to treat a gender-dysphoric child is to affirm his or her mental state with irreversible hormone treatments and surgeries, before the child is even old enough to sign a consent form.
It’s worth repeating that these aren’t random people I found on Tik Tok. They’re children featured in a documentary on HBO. That’s how big this problem has become.