Thursday, October 10, 2019

Competition: Who can write the most moronic anti-LGBTQ piece for the Federalist?

According to Nathanael Blake: U.K. Court Decision Affirms Transgenderism Is A Religion Of Complete Self-Worship. No. Uh-uh. Blake is claiming that transgender people are adherents to some sort of religion comprised of self-worship. That leads me to Blake's subtitle:
Catholicism preaches the real presence of Christ veiled in the bread and wine; transgenderism professes the real presence of the woman veiled in the male body.
There are several logical fallacies in that single sentence. These include an appeal to heaven, an a priori argument and biologizing. It is simpler to call it bullshit and to question how Catholic dogma has any relationship to a medical condition.

Perhaps people with gender dysphoria must suffer in service to the catechism. Most of them are probably not Catholic. I also have to wonder what religion has to do with the outcome of a legal case that Mr. Blake doesn't like. Blake proposes to be an arbiter of morality with an immoral approach to people he disapproves of.
Consider the case of David Mackereth, an English doctor whose Christian faith has been officially declared impermissible. Mackereth was fired for refusing to “‘refer to a man six foot tall with a beard’ as ‘she.’” A judge upheld his firing, declaring that “belief in Genesis 1:27, lack of belief in transgenderism, and conscientious objection to transgenderism in our judgment are incompatible with human dignity and conflict with the fundamental rights of others, specifically here, transgender individuals.” This ruling is part of a new religious establishment, complete with penal laws.
None of the above is remotely true. While I am completely ignorant of law in the United Kingdom, that doctor is free to believe anything that he likes. He can practice his faith. So can Scientologists and probably Satanists. Mr. Blake is advocating Christian Sharia. One true faith that everyone must adhere to. That is simply not the case in the industrialized world.

Hunter Schafer
via HBO
Many faiths exist and they have different precepts. In a civilized society we do not allow one set of beliefs to do violence to others. According to the post, the transgender woman who Mackereth insisted on misgendering is six feet tall and has a beard. That is entirely irrelevant and it is intellectually dishonest. The simple fact is that Mackereth would misgender a transgender woman who looked like Hunter Schafer, a trans actress who stars in HBO's Euphoria.

Mackereth can believe anything that he likes. I don't know about the UK but, in this country, employers, including government employers, have an absolute right to manage workplace speech. It is necessary to set rules in order to have cohesiveness and productivity. Beyond that, I find this extremely petty. People refuse to use gender appropriate pronouns to demonstrate their disapproval of a transgender person.

That disapproval might be — and often is — the result of religious belief but the practice of religion, in no circumstances, requires the adherent to be uncivil to others. Their disapproval is gratuitous; irrelevant until it is deployed to belittle its target. It is no different than calling me a “Christ killer” in the workplace. It is no different than a Catholic calling a Protestant a heretic in the workplace. It is not just stupid. It is entirely unnecessary.

Blake continues:
The judge’s language is awkward but nonetheless revealing insofar as it acknowledges it is an affirmation of faith to declare that a tall, bearded man is, in some mystical sense, a woman. The claim that a male can be (or become) a woman is religious, not scientific.
Pretty idiotic. Bringing science into the discussion makes him seem even more moronic. The overwhelming scientific consensus holds that gender is a separate construct from natal sex. Most people have congruent gender and sex. Some people — a very small minority — have incongruent gender and sex. That condition —gender dysphoria — can cause enormous suffering. According to medical science, there is only one means of treating the condition: Gender affirmation.

The lack of empathy is appalling. What religion teaches people to be inconsiderate and cruel bullies? Imagine the plight of the transgender co-worker. He or she is marginalized and the target of opprobrium. It is really necessary to pile on?

The ignoramus claims knowledge that he does not possess. He professes to know something about the beliefs of transgender people who, he further claims, share a common doctrine:
The central doctrine of transgenderism is the belief that human will determines reality as we create ourselves. A man who identifies as a woman is therefore a woman and has always been. Social, chemical, and surgical alterations are merely the outward affirmation and outworking of this inward truth, and the imperfections of physical transition do not negate the metaphysical truth of gender identity. Not all people who identify as LGBT accept this radical ideology, but the loudest voices preach it aggressively.
Being transgender is neither a philosophy nor doctrine. It is a means of treating a medical condition. Treating transgender people as adherents to a doctrine is a dishonest (and rather sloppy) way of creating a straw man argument which is yet another logical fallacy.

Being transgender is not an ideology and there is nothing radical about the only means of treating a medical condition. The only thing that transgender people share in common is the existence of a medical condition which has been known to medical science for well over 100 years.

Blake indulges in magical thinking; making arguments from authority comprised of a deity and religion. This causes him to redefine almost everything out of convenience. The very title of this polemic redefines reality. The poor man is incapable of constructing an expression of disapproval without changing the very nature of his subject. He continues to do so with this:
These mystical doctrines of transgender ideology exemplify modern self-worship, in which the human replaces the divine dictates of revealed religion as the source and creator of meaning. Catholicism preaches the real presence of Christ veiled in the bread and wine; transgenderism professes the real presence of the woman veiled in the male body.
He is just repeating himself by claiming that transgender people are adherents to mysticism, strange doctrines and an ideology resembling religion. No, stupid. They are people dealing with a medical condition. There are no volunteers in the transgender orbit. Blake is suggesting that transgender people will cease to exist if only they would divorce themselves from the ideology or philosophy. It is an incredibly idiotic claim.

Apparently some people feel the need to justify a set of beliefs that really is an ideology based on mysticism. Which is harder to believe: That the “real presence of Christ is veiled in the bread and wine” or that transgender people are so because of a medical condition? I have friends who believe the first of those choices. Personally, I have no doubt whatsoever that it is the latter of the two. Nor do I believe that Moses parted the Red Sea. Beliefs based on faith have little traction with me.

Faith-based beliefs have no place in any discussion of medicine. It is a call to the medieval conviction that all ailments are the result of demons.

Evidence-based science is only limited by the methodology employed to produce the evidence. I am guilty of confirmation bias just like everyone else but my judgment in that regard is pragmatic. At least I hope so.

Mr. Blake is not nearly as smart as he seems to think he is. Later on, in his continuing commitment to creating straw men:
Modern self-worship struggles to address the problem, and transgender ideology is not the only point at which moderns are caught between self-worship and self-loathing. Environmental misanthropy provides another example.
“Environmental misanthropy?” Presumably an inferential dislike of humankind because of an ideology that does not exist. Pointless esoterica is an ideology. Being transgender is not.

This bullshit is too tedious. I'll skip to the end of this seemingly endless exercise in unproductive rhetoric.
The judge in Mackereth’s case got it backwards. The teaching of Genesis 1:27 that God made humans, male and female, in the image of himself is the firm foundation for human dignity and human rights. The real threat comes not from a Christian doctor’s refusal to pretend a man is a woman, but from a mystical ideology that worships the self.
I keep saying that all of this angst is based on a conflict with Genesis 1:27. People have doubted that. “That can't be true!” It is perfectly true. It takes balls for Nathanael Blake to claim that mitigating a medical condition is a mystical ideology. Psychologists call that “projection.”

What is the point of Nathanael Blake's polemic? If it is to demonstrate the author's extreme superstition, it succeeds. If Blake is trying to express anything meaningful about transgender people, it is a dismal failure. Blake knows nothing about his subject.

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