Thursday, June 28, 2018

Apparently transgender accommodations have something to do with Obergefell

Nathanael Blake
Nathanael Blake disappoints
A Nathanael Blake writes: 3 Years Of Experience Have Only Proved That Obergefell Was A Big Mistake. Personally, I am always eager to entertain an argument in opposition to marriage equality. If for no other reason I want to see if some conservative Christian has come up with something new. Once again I am disappointed. Proved? Where is the proof? Where is the evidence?

We are told that Mr. Nathanael Blake (that is the correct spelling of his first name) lives in Missouri and has a PhD in political theory from Catholic University of America. The last time I paid attention to Blake he was nattering on about the evils of nondiscrimination laws which he referred to as “discrimination laws.” Blake's doctoral dissertation was titled: Natural Law and History: The Use and Abuse of Practical Reason. One can only imagine the number of graduate students at Catholic U who have opined about natural law. Aquinas himself would succumb to the tedium.

Let us begin with the requisite victimization of our author:
Opposition to same-sex marriage is now a minority position, and our cultural elites treat it as beyond the bounds of reasonable discourse. The losers are expected to convert or to shut up, and many have. Younger conservatives may wonder why we fought over this at all. But nothing over the last few years has changed my mind. Indeed, I have become more certain that same-sex marriage is a legal and cultural mistake.
In spite of his graduate degree in political theory Mr. Blake is confused with respect to what a conservative is. Nevertheless, what I want to hear is how marriage equality has affected Mr. Blake's life. I will even settle for a reasonable argument of societal impediment. We never quite get there. When, oh when, are these people going to learn that the hackneyed term “cultural elites” has no meaning? Do they feel persuasive by parroting Sarah Palin who has the intellect of a a box of Cap'n Crunch?

The next paragraph describes how Justice Kennedy erred as a matter of constitutional law. That is followed by a paragraph about those mean gays who expect service in public accommodations when denial of service is barred by local law. Oh the temerity of some queers! I guess that we are done with Obergefell because next comes this remarkable bit of religious sophistry:
And, immediately following the triumph of the campaign for same-sex marriage, the LGBT movement began to aggressively promote a transgender agenda that encourages alienation and disassociation from the realities of our embodiment. From this, too, dissent will not be tolerated. The LGBT lobby is even outraged by mild cautions from sympathetic observers who have realized that blindly affirming all claims to transgender identity puts some children at risk.
My version of history is a bit different. In the wake of Obergefell there was a wave of laws seeking to punish LGBT people. Furthermore President Obama sought to make transgender and gender nonconforming youth safe in public schools. The Department of Education issued guidance accordingly. Well, that was too much for Christian conservatives to handle. We all just know that God created men and women. Additionally the pope, as amateur psychiatrist, was running around decrying gender theory and then gender ideology as if he knew what the hell he was talking about.

That “disassociation from the realities of embodiment” nonsense is from Ryan T. Anderson, music major turned philosopher and apologist for the Catholic Church. Anderson has no training or experience to know the first thing about gender dysphoria. His aim was to conform opinion to the teachings of the Church. The Church does not approve of transgender people which means, in essence, that the Church does not approve of people with a certain medical condition.

Blake concocts outrage on the part of the LGBT community. What “outrages” me is all of the bullshit from people who know nothing. Gender dysphoria is treated by psychiatrists and there is no intervention known to medical science to address the condition. That is the simple fact. The only thing, for some people, that mitigates the symptoms is gender affirmation. None of these Christian critics of transgender people have any alternatives and they are not qualified to offer alternatives. A handful of physicians who are noisy Defenders of the Faith promote a type of conversion therapy without the research to demonstrate that it is at all effective or even safe. Unmitigated gender dysphoria puts people in severe distress that can lead to self-harm.

What also outrages me is the use of things like Blake's “sympathetic observers.” Only one thing matters for an adult, a child or a parent: The best guidance available from a clinical specialist who has actually evaluated the individual. Everything else is toxic noise from people who disapprove of trans people for religious reasons.

And I am still waiting to hear why three years later, the Obergefell ruling is a failure.

What we get is more of this:
It would have been better if advocates for same-sex marriage had been faithful to the Constitution, committed to the rule of law, tolerant of disagreement and accepting of the realities of human embodiment. It would have been better, but they would still be wrong. Regardless of the good or bad behavior of the LGBT movement, same-marriage is wrong in itself because it fundamentally misunderstands the reality of what marriage is.
For people like Mr. Nathanael Blake the “reality of what marriage is” amounts to the teachings of the Catholic Church and that is not the reality of civil marriage.

This goes on and on and on. It reads like an amicus brief from Robert P. George:
…Such views are now denounced as bigotry. We are told not to think in heteronormative terms, but marriage is heteronormative by nature. …
Which amounts to more self-victimization. It is also an expression of arrogance. The truth is that we really do not care what anyone thinks of our marriages. We neither seek nor require anyone's approval. The religious set are obsessed with the notion that we want their blessing and then resent the fact that we do not when the realization sinks in.

There is some of this, too:
We are in a crisis of marriage and family. Much of our political and cultural dysfunction is the fallout of broken families and failed relationships — abandoned children and lonely, hurt men and women. Again, this was not caused by same-sex marriage or the LGBT movement, but accepting their ideological framework will impede amelioration. The healing truths that our culture needs are incompatible with an ideology that muddles the differences between men and women, and that rejects the unique value of the natural family.
What I gather he is saying is that we cannot improve society while same-sex marriage exists. I do not know if he is accusing marriage equality or transgender people for supposedly muddling the differences between men and women. Neither is an “ideology.” How do we go from a medical condition or civil marriage to an ideology?

Allow me to reduce this to utter simplicity for Mr. Blake. Two men who are married do not play at being husband and wife. They are two husbands. As a matter of scientific fact, everyone has both gender and natal sex. For most of us the two constructs are congruent. Their incongruence is what gender dysphoria is. Gender generally prevails over natal sex and that does not produce male-female confusion.

Blake's tirade (I have skipped over most of it) comes to a conclusion with:
The sexual revolution promised more than it could deliver, but our culture is still dominated by those who believe that the next hit of sexual liberation will finally bring happiness. Amidst these continued failures, who will provide the social capital to eventually build up what has been destroyed?

It will be those on the losing side. It will be ordinary men and women who believe in and live by a full understanding of marriage, no matter how unpopular such beliefs become.
Nathanael Blake that, after three years, Obergefell proved to be a mistake. About 1,600 words later and he has not delivered. Opinion based on religion is representative of ideology. It is not fact and it is evidence of nothing. Proof requires evidence. After three years, not one so-called traditional marriage has been affected by marriage equality. Mr. Blake cannot demonstrate anything to the contrary.  Massachusetts had, and continues to have, one of the lowest divorce rates in the nation. In fact, it has improved since the state first recognized same-sex marriage. That is called evidence. E-v-i-d-e-n-c-e.

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