Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Michael Brown - Dangerous by choice

Michael Brown
Michael Brown is generally on my ignore list. Brown seems to be a smart man. Yet when confronted with a question he invariably chooses the explanation that most closely conforms to scripture regardless of evidence to the contrary. In doing so, Brown squanders his intellect. Case in point is his Tuesday polemic titled: “Why Transgender Activism Will Not Succeed in Changing America.” Brown writes:
Transgender activism will never succeed in reshaping our society for one simple reason: It is not natural. Biological differences are too deeply instilled in the human race. Male-female distinctives are too obvious and real. It is futile to declare war on gender.

It is one thing to be asked to empathize with those who struggle with gender identity confusion. It is another thing to declare that biological categories do not determine reality.
I do not know whether or not I qualify as a trans activist. Nevertheless, I most certainly do want to change the United States of America through education. I saw an interesting post today citing a progressive Catholic group. They express the need for Pope Francis to become better educated about gender. Michael Brown shares the pope's ignorance which is based on the inability to appreciate the scientifically settled fact that gender and natal sex are different constructs.

Neither the pope nor Mr. Brown are likely to offer a treatment plan for a physical condition let alone an intervention that differs from the scientific consensus. Both lack the erudition (and medical license) to treat someone for pancreatic cancer. Yet Brown and the pope profess expertise in the treatment of gender dysphoria. What makes Michael Brown think that the treatment of gender dysphoria requires less training and experience than someone treating cancer?

More specifically, there is no known medical intervention to treat gender dysphoria. Why does Brown assert that he is more knowledgeable than all of the medical professionals who treat the condition? When Brown refers to people with gender dysphoria as “confused” that is a statement from ignorance. Brown does not have “MD” after his name and he is not a board certified psychiatrist.

Arrogance or faith? It doesn't matter why Brown does what he does. The important thing is that he is misinforming people in a way that has the potential to be very harmful to children.

Medical science does not know how to treat gender dysphoria directly but the symptoms (which can include extreme anxiety and depression) can be moderated. Without diminishing the symptoms people, particularly children, have a significant potential for self-harm? Gender affirmation reduces anxiety and depression to near-normal or normal levels. People don't become transgender to war against gender. They do so because they get relief. Even with all of the bigotry that they endure, trans folks find it easier to live as their gender than to live as their sex. That should give Michael Brown pause. It does not.

If Brown has a better idea then he should do the applicable research and publish to a peer-reviewed journal. His article would be groundbreaking and of immense importance. If he does not have a better idea that withstands scientific scrutiny then he should [deleted] shut up and defer to the professionals.

What people like Brown need to understand is that real lives are at stake. Treating kids with gender dysphoria as if they are confused is no less risky than an unlicensed amateur treating cancer. Brown and his fellow travelers need to stop playing with other people's lives in order to conform their world to scripture.

There are two dissenting psychiatrists who provide cover for religious conservatives. One is in his late eighties and retired. The other does not treat people with gender dysphoria. These two have done no original research (opting for literature reviews) let alone any research that has been published to a respected peer-reviewed scholarly journal.

Brown has a PhD. Presumably he knows the difference between real scholarship and bullshit. Yet he gives no indication that he has even bothered to read the relevant research on gender. That makes him dangerous, … by choice.

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