Thursday, June 8, 2017

ACPissed ACPeds

Dr. Jack Turban
Dr. Jack Turban
The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) responds to an article in Psychology Today by Dr. Jack Turban. ACPeds is a minuscule, right wing Christian hate group that should not be confused with the real peer organization, The American Academy of Pediatrics. Needless to say, Turban's article is highly critical of ACPeds because they are at odds with medical science.

Some background:

I wrote about Dr. Turban on April 9 regarding a piece that he wrote for the New York Times. We have also exchanged some email which has added to my understanding of trans and gender non-conforming children.

Turban is a research fellow at the Yale School of Medicine. BA in neurobiology from Harvard magna cum laude. MD, Yale. He is also a resident child and adolescent psychiatrist at The Massachusetts General Hospital & McLean Hospital in conjunction with Harvard Medical School. His research and writing are focused on child and adolescent psychiatry, with a concentration on pediatric gender identity.  In other words, the guy is a pro. He is a clinician who works with these kids on a daily basis. His only agenda is the best care for patients.

I highly doubt that the American College of Pediatricians could offer views from a scholar with a comparable background

According to ACPeds:
The American College of Pediatricians is a professional organization confident in the science we present and in the traditional ethics we uphold. Although we are concerned with many issues confronting children today, we are typically challenged for being critical of affirming youth as LGBT. Ultimately, labels such as “hate group”, “miniscule”, “right wing” and others serve only to deflect attention away from facts that undermine a desired agenda. In the past, we have simply directed critics to the relevant content on our website. On May 8, 2017, however, Psychology Today published an article by Mr. Jack Turban that is not only libelous, but also denies the fact that untold numbers of American children are being experimented upon, and many of them permanently sterilized, under the guise of treating a largely transient disorder known as Gender Dysphoria of Childhood. This warrants a more public and focused response which may be read here.
I choose, at this time, to respond solely to ACPeds blog post which is factually inaccurate.  They are merely repeating the same nonsense that was the subject of Dr. Turban's  criticism. For example, they again claim that gender dysphoria in children is transient. This seems to be based on a 30-year-old "Sissy Boy Study" which, among other things, conflate sexual orientation with gender identity.

Dr. Turban's piece in Psychology Today is titled: “The American College of Pediatricians Is an Anti-LGBT Group.” The subtitle reads: “A small but clever anti-LGBT group created a legit-sounding name.”

One devastating quote from the piece did not originate with Turban:
Dr. Scott Leibowitz, medical director of the THRIVE program at Nationwide Children's Hospital and chair of the sexual orientation and gender identity issues committee for the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, did not parse his words, "It can hardly be a credible medical organization when it consistently chooses to ignore science and the growing evidence base that clearly demonstrates the benefits of affirmative care with LGBT youth across all ages."
Turban clearly outlines ACPeds' positions on various LGBT issues. Why is it that right wing organizations always claim that quoting their own words is libelous? The idea that Turban's piece is defamatory is preposterous. They continue:
In addition to this targeted response, Dr. Cretella, President of the American College of Pediatricians, stated,
We challenge our critics to go beyond name calling and to instead join us in creating two bipartisan research teams. One research team to publish a Cochrane Review on the WPATH standards for Childhood Gender Dysphoria, and a second team to investigate and publish on the benefits and risks from sexual orientation change therapy when provided by licensed mental health professionals.
Cretella's challenge is disingenuous nonsense. ACPeds lacks the resources to contribute to research, let alone a Cochrane Review. Moreover, they lack the investigators to perform disinterested research (agnostic to the result). Substantial research already exists in both areas and the APA has already published research on the efficacy of so-called reparative therapy. They concluded that is it ineffective and potentially harmful.

Furthermore it is difficult to engage in a cooperative effort when one party is intellectually dishonest. On their website they claim as a core value:
Recognizes that there are absolutes and scientific truths that transcend relative social considerations of the day.
Yet they consistently promote positions that are at odds with the prevailing scientific consensus. This includes (as Dr. Turban points out) the supposed benefits of reparative "therapy" and the assertion that gay parents are not good parents. Moreover, in spite of being highly opinionated, to the best of my knowledge ACPeds has never formed its positions based upon cited research that is peer-reviewed and published to a respected scholarly journal. Dr. Turban provides a factual analysis of ACPeds positions (including their rejection of gender-affirmation) and how those positions are at odds with prevailing research that is peer reviewed and published to mainstream scholarly journals.


  1. Based upon budget and membership ACPeds is minuscule when compared to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
  2. ACPeds is an anti-LGBT hate group. According to SPLC: "ACPeds has a history of propagating damaging falsehoods about LGBT people, including linking homosexuality to pedophilia, and claiming that LGBT people are more promiscuous than heterosexuals, and that LGBT people are a danger to children."
  3. ACPeds is a right wing Christian operation.
They can claim that these allegations distract from the real work of the organization. In point of fact, they indicate that the real work of the organization is to promote an  anti-LGBT conservative Christian agenda. That is antithetical to sound medical practice and scientific discovery.
The part that I need for my new computer is on its way but I will not receive it until next Wednesday. Meanwhile, email that would be filtered and distributed to local folders is piling up. I am way behind.

Blogging from a Kindle with a Bluetooth keyboard is challenging. So bear with me. If I haven't answered email I apologize.

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