Monday, March 6, 2017

Transgender gibberish at Witherspoon - So what else is new?

Emily Zinos
Emily Zinos via Twitter
Lost in the self-serving self-victimization of bigoted, ignorant and self-absorbed Christian parents of her classmates was the plight of one gender nonconforming six-year-old child

At uber-Catholic Witherspoon Institute's blog, Emily Zinos writes: “Biology Isn't Bigotry: Christians, Lesbians, and Radical Feminists Unite to Fight Gender Ideology.” It is tedious. Yet another Defender of the Faith© with unknown academic credentials explains everything you need to know about gender dysphoria in conformity with the teachings of the Catholic Church. Zinos is an advocate for transgender discrimination on behalf of the anti-LGBT Minnesota Family Council.

The title of this little diatribe needs a correction. Lesbians should be lesbian (singular). That would be Miriam Ben Shalom who seems to have an inexplicable problem with transgender people. As a consequence she has lost whatever credibility she once had in the LGBT community. The supposed feminist is also an outlier. The subtitle reads:
Public schools have a duty to serve all children, but a school cannot serve children and a totalitarian ideology all at once. For the sake of children’s well-being, Christian mothers are uniting with their radical feminist and lesbian sisters to reject the idea of “gender identity.”
It is idiotic to call the existence of a medical condition an ideology but that is precisely what Pope Francis insists on doing. To then call the acceptance of the overwhelming conclusion of the medical and counseling communities “totalitarian” is, well … spectacularly stupid yet this is the teaching of the Church; gender identity doesn't exist (as demonstrated in this case by Zinos' defensive quotation marks). As Ryan T. Anderson (editor of this same blog) has stated, everyone is created cisgender and heterosexual. It is Palinesque willful ignorance.
As a mother of seven, I have no doubts about my conviction that biological sex is a fundamental reality; giving birth many times over has made an incredibly persuasive argument in that regard. Though I’ve been blessed with a large community of Catholic and Christian friends who share my views, in secular circles more and more people have come to see embodied sex as merely a social construct. So you can imagine my surprise when I found that I had allies in the feminist and lesbian community. Though we disagree on a multitude of issues, the Hands Across the Aisle coalition has found common ground in our shared womanhood, our concern for sex-based rights, and our collective refusal to redefine sex as gender identity.
I am trying to figure out how birthing children provides some form of education regarding sexual identity. She also doesn't realize that we learn much more from people who disagree with us (as long as they are intellectually honest). Ms. Zinos presumes to instruct us about what secular people believe by parroting the term “social construct” which she clearly does not understand. Neither sex nor gender identity are social constructs.

Hands Across the Aisle is an anti-trans group. While no individuals are identified as organizers it generally mirrors the religious fundamentalist views of Heritage Foundation. Indeed, the lead blog post is a February 17 piece written by Ryan T. Anderson titled: “Biology Isn’t Bigotry: Why Sex Matters in the Age of Gender Identity.” Anderson, who works for Heritage, seems to be obsessed with transgender folks lately. That is presumably because the pope seems obsessed with trans people lately. That “common ground” links to a pseudo-intellectual post titled “Gender Identity Harms Women” which is without attribution. Were that true (and it is not) then it must also harm men. The very notion that accepting the fact that a small segment of our society has gender dysphoria represents an effort to “redefine sex as gender identity.” is patently preposterous. This is all just religious based crackpottery.
The belief that one’s internal sense of self determines maleness or femaleness and that subjective feelings take precedence over an objective physical reality constitutes a severing of mind from body. Our sex is who we are: it can’t be amputated from our body like a limb. But the true believers in gender ideology are hard at work, pulling in converts to this gnostic worldview that shuns the material that we humans are made of: the body. You can be assured that an ideology like this will, to use Pope Francis’s words, lead to the “annihilation of man” in our culture, in the law, and in the lives of those who fall prey to the tenets of this weaponized “civil rights” movement.
In point of fact the Pope lacks the training and experience to exude expertise on sexuality. We try to leave that to the clinicians who are professionals. Uncritical acceptance of a religious leader's utterances blur the line between faith and superstition. The use of the word “weaponized” is hackneyed and annoying. It is meaningless. And, yes, trans people do have certain civil rights that should not be compromise by religious zealots. This will become clearer in the near future.
In October 2015, I received an email from my children’s school principal that a gender non-conforming kindergartner had arrived. A whole host of demands quickly followed this announcement. The bathrooms, the locker rooms, the uniforms—every aspect of the school’s practices that differentiated between the sexes would have to be made gender neutral. It was just the beginning of a wild ride into a world where schools have become “indoctrination hubs” and biological sex no longer exists.
All this hyperbole over one gender nonconforming six-year-old. I know nothing about this child but accommodating his or her individual needs is not going to tilt the earth off its axis. Nor is this the end of “biological sex” as we know it. Ms. Zinos is exhibiting a wholly irrational fear that she is feeding with her own hyperbole. Zinos wants this kid to be noticed, isolated and marginalized because of her irrational fears which coexist with extreme religious beliefs.

It's all part of some grand conspiracy. 

A series of surreal events unfolded at our school.

Parents were told that students from kindergarten to fifth grade would have to be taught that gender identity, sex, and gender expression were all free-floating concepts, through insipid children’s books and propaganda framed as anti-bullying activism. These demands were, of course, a Trojan horse for trans advocacy in the classroom. This is a common tactic.
Again, this woman is simply irrational. This entire paragraph is hyperbolic nonsense. I have left the links intact. This first is to a polemic at Witherspoon by two Christian conservatives over that National Geographic cover including a trans girl. Oh, the horror of it all. That “insipid” book seems to have been written by the mother of a trans girl (Cheryl Kilodavis) who attempts to explain to people, some like Zinos, some things about trans kids. Odds are pretty good that Zinos hasn't read this book and never will. She really should but religious conservatives tend to avoid anything that might challenge their religious beliefs. “Insipid”, by the way, means uninteresting. How would she know? The third link is to GLSEN's Day of Silence. If anti-bulling programs are “propaganda” the word becomes meaningless. What she calls a “common tactic” is a rather benign page at the Human Rights Campaign about inclusive curricula. She, of course, wants just the opposite.
Parents were told—by the school’s lawyer!—that free speech creates a “hostile environment” when it critiques the transgender issue. Letters that parents wrote to the school board for public comment were heavily redacted. In some cases, 90 percent of the letter was blacked out.
This is relatively irrelevant but Zinos is incapable of writing so much as an intellectually honest sentence free of hyperbole. The First Amendment does have limitations. As a matter of courtesy and common decency parents should have exercised some restraint. Yet, some are intent on infliction their religious bullshit on everyone else. People have no problem being amateur psychiatrists in defense of religion. It makes no sense whatsoever.
Parents hosted a presentation (which they had to pay for themselves) to provide a counterpoint to the biased treatment the school had given the gender identity issue. Well over a hundred local pro-LGBTQ protesters came to the presentation, prompting the local police to send a sergeant and two patrolling squads as protection.
The link is to an hour+ video from a Minnesota hate group. What they are doing is providing religious arguments posed as “counterpoint” to information provided by professionals.

They are determined that this six-year-old should suffer discrimination.

Finally, even after a de facto gender inclusion policy was passed, a complaint was filed against the school with our city’s Department of Human Rights, claiming the school had refused this transgender child the ability to “transition” safely at school. In a totalitarian regime, nothing but total capitulation is acceptable.
That first link is to a GLSEN model policy (in contrast to the school's actual policy). The second link is to a rather good article from April, 2016. Apparently anything that this irrational woman doesn't like is totalitarian.

I am going to quote just one more portion and then fill in some details:
First, schools will teach children to accept an ideology that is predicated on the lie that biological sex plays second fiddle to a self-proclaimed, subjective gender identity, and that the sex of one’s body is mutable or even irrelevant. This isn’t just an idea that you can tuck away in a unit study or an anti-bullying presentation. It will inevitably find its way into every aspect of a school and make a deep impression on the developing minds of children. For example, girls, under the regressive mandates of anti-bullying and gender inclusion policies, would have to agree to call boys in their locker room “girls,” effectively losing their rights to free speech and to privacy from males. And science—particularly biology—would die a quick death at the hands of a concept that necessarily eradicates observable facts about human sexuality. Gender ideology in the curriculum is a lie enshrined as truth.

Second, institutionalizing gender ideology will require that schools ignore the evidence that it causes real harm to children.
Aside from the fact that none of this makes the least bit of sense, none of these links are to peer-reviewed literature. The first, by the way, is an equally nonsensical polemic, written by one of the bloggers at Heritage Foundation. The last cite is to a piece at the tiny Christian group, American College of Pediatricians which SPLC labels an anti-LGBT hate group.

The bottom line is that gender identity is not an ideology. It is a reality recognized by the medical community for at least a half-century. It's not new either. Ancient Hindu texts refer to transgender people as a third sex. Accepting the reality of gender identity is certainly not a threat to biology. Claiming otherwise is just an irrational reaction to something that this woman doesn't like. Recognizing that some children are gender nonconforming sure as hell doesn't harm anyone. That would occur if we refuse to accept what is a scientific reality.

Gender is a continuum and a very small segment of our society experiences extreme discomfort caused by a disparity between sex and gender. It is called gender dysphoria and it is a condition. It is not a disorder. The only known treatment for gender dysphoria is gender affirmation which relieves the discomfort. Most of the discomfort that they then experience is due to bigotry.

This story is about David and Hannah Edwards. Their gender nonconforming child was enrolled at Nova Classical Academy, a charter school in St. Paul. MN. At the time their boy showed showed some preferences for female apparel and activities. The Edwards' disclosed issues surrounding their child's sexuality to the school.

Shortly after the school year started, the child was experiencing bullying. In response the staff organized a gender diversity training program to coincide with the school's anti-bullying week but school leadership intervened and prevented the training largely on the premise that it was controversial.

Over time it became apparent that the Edwards' child was a transgender girl. She went through a social transition everywhere except the school. In all other venues she was living as a girl. Presumably she was in the care of expert clinicians. Eventually, as she transitioned in school, some of the other children were making her transition very difficult through ridicule and bullying.

The environment became increasingly toxic. This included meetings with parents (like this imbecile) who aired the pro forma unscientific religious rhetoric. Over at the Heritage Foundation blog they ran a piece specific to this case. It was the gratuitous idiocy about innocent little children being corrupted by political correctness.

At one point the school and the Edwards reached agreement on a training program which was abruptly canceled. School leadership were apparently unable to stand up to the Christian bullies who were calling them bullies. It was the usual projection that we see in these cases. Parents convince the school that they should be able to opt their children out of the training which compromised the entire effort.

Finally, the Edwards' withdrew their kid from the school but filed suit to prevent this from happening to another child. All this because of one gender nonconforming six-year-old. Zinos is full of self-victimization. Ultimately it was the child and her parents who were victimized by religious zealots.

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