Legalizing Deception: Why “Gender Identity” Should Not be Added to Anti-discrimination Legislation

Certain national and international groups are pushing for the addition of “gender identity” and “gender expression” to anti-discrimination laws. According to activists, gender identity is defined as: “An individual’s self–perception or inner sense of being a man, a male, a woman, a female, both, neither, butch, femme, two-spirit, bigender, or another configuration of gender. Gender identity often matches the gender typically associated with the person’s anatomy but sometimes does not” and gender expression refers to: “Any combination of how someone outwardly presents external characteristics behaviors that are socially defined as masculine or feminine, including dress, mannerisms speech patterns and social interactions.”[1]

For example, a bill introduced in the Maryland legislature reads as follows: “An owner or operator of a place of public accommodation …may not refuse, withhold from, or deny to any person any of the accommodations, advantages, facilities, or privileges of the place of public accommodation because of the person’s … gender identity.” This would mean that males dressed as females could use women’s restrooms and locker rooms.

Such legislation is designed to give legal protections to those who reject the sex they were born with and want to be publicly accepted as the other sex -– the so-called ‘transsexuals,’ ‘transgendered,’ ‘gender queer,’ transvestites, and others. Such persons deceive themselves, deceive others, and are being deceived by mental health professionals and surgeons. The public is being deceived by the media and activists into believing that so-called ‘transsexuals’ were born with biological problems that are remedied by surgery and that it is possible to change your sex.

No one can change sex; it is written in DNA on every cell of our bodies. The people demanding “gender identity and expression” protection are physically normal men or women, but according to the “gender” ideologues, what matters is not what sex you really are, but what sex you want to be or think you are. People could be sanctioned for simply using the correct pronouns when referring to a person who is obviously male, but wants to be female.

The following quote from an interview with Dr. Theodore Dalrymple, author of a collection of essays titled: Our Culture, What’s Left of It: The Mandarins and the Masses demonstrates the effect such lies have on the culture:

In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed.[2]

One lie leads to another. A clearly male person presents himself in public as a woman. He has had surgery and hormone treatments to perfect his impersonation and he demands that we pretend this makes him a woman. He wants us to use female pronouns when speaking of him and to allow him to use the ladies’ restroom. He also wants to change his birth certificate and driver’s license. While some persons who present as the other sex are obviously not the sex they pretend to be, others are able to deceive their sexual partners without informing them of their true sexual identity.

Persons who present themselves in public as the other sex say they need such protections because they are afraid of violence. This fear is real. When someone is deceived — particularly in such a personal matter has the sex of an intimate partner or potential spouse — anger is an understandable reaction. Violent acts can never be condoned, but if such legislation is passed those who have been deceived will be denied any legal recourse and the deceivers will be portrayed as victims.

The circle of deception created by this “gender ideology” begins with those who want to be the other sex deceiving themselves. As children they may have been wounded, traumatized, abused, or rejected. They fell into envy and fantasy, imagining “If I were the other sex, I would be safe, loved, valued.” This envy grew into an obsession. They coveted the body parts of the other sex, and despised their own bodies. The idea that they were “transsexual” may have been suggested to them by a mental health professional or they may have seen reports of “sex changes” in the media. They deceived themselves into believing that this would be the answer to all their problems. While some may simply want to be the other sex, others may actually come to believe that they really are the other sex, that nature made a mistake and gave them the body of one sex and the brain of the other. Such a delusion is very difficult to treat, particularly when the person learns that there are surgeons able to fulfill their fantasy and create the appearance of the other sex.

While those applying for surgery may insist that they have the brain or soul of the other sex, they really don’t know what it means to be the other sex. Most can only present a very stereotyped image of their desired sex. They have to constantly monitor their own gestures and mannerisms. They are excited when they are able to deceive others — to pass — but admit that they are often not accepted as the other sex. They want the government to force people to go along with their deception, but even if such laws are passed they will only be able to fool some of the people some of the time.

While persons who want to be the other sex desperately want to believe that they were born with this problem, there is no evidence for this. Some men and women who want to be the other sex failed to identify with their birth sex as children. This condition, known as childhood gender (sexual) identity disorder (G[S]ID), is preventable and treatable. Even without treatment most children with G[S]ID grow out of it; however, a small number persist in their desire to be the other sex.

Not all persons who want to be the other sex suffered from obvious symptoms of G[S]ID as children. Some males are autogynephiles, who began in adolescence to engage in paraphilic transvestite fetishism. A paraphilia is a sexual attraction to something other than another person. In this case a man is sexually aroused by to the image of himself as a woman. As unhappy adolescents, these males engaged in masturbation wearing their mother’s clothing and fantasized about being women. Many autogynephiles marry, have children, and engage in male-typical careers, while secretly engaging in cross-dressing. For some autogynephiles, cross-dressing is not enough; they want to perfect this image through surgery. One autogynephile explained that these are men who want to become what they love.[3] After surgery many autogynephiles continue to be sexually attracted to women and insist they are lesbians. It is interesting to note that some radical feminists are offended by the stereotyped images of women these men present. Some feminist groups have restricted their gatherings to women born as women and living as women.

Those who are obsessed with the idea of being the other sex often resist therapy. They refuse to look at the psychological reasons for their desires. Some mental health professionals, frustrated by their inability to treat this disorder and concerned about their clients’ obvious dysphoria, are willing to go along with this deception. They give in to their clients’ demands and recommend a surgical solution to what they as therapists know is a mental health problem. They deceive their clients into believing that a “sex change” is possible.

The “sex change” surgeons know they can’t change a persons’ sex, they can only create a non-functional appearance of the other sex, but they also know they will be well paid for their skill and so go along with the deception.

The news media report glowing tales of how John became Jane and is now entirely happy. Reporters use the new names and incorrect pronouns. Headlines read “The Pregnant Man” when the reality is that a woman who had her breasts removed and received male hormones to induce beard growth became pregnant by artificial insemination. Doubters are labeled “transphobic.”

Public officials go along with the deception, allowing persons who want to be the other sex to falsify their driver licenses and other documents, even some who have not been surgically altered.

Those who go through mutilating surgery — who sacrificed so much to achieve their fantasy — have to continue the deception even though their unrealistic expectations are often not met.[4] Anne Lawrence, a post surgery autogynephile, explains how the fantasy breaks down:

Autogynephilic transsexuals may also find it harder to fully identify with women after transition than before, because the difference they inevitably observe between themselves and natal women become harder to rationalize after transition. Before transition, these differences can be attributed to the necessity of temporarily maintaining a socially acceptable masculine persona: after transition, when this excuse evaporates, autogynephilic transsexuals may be forced to confront reality. Nonhomosexual MtF transsexuals often seem to expect that, with enough effort, they will be able to pass undetected as natal women after transition; but because their appearance and behavior are rarely naturally feminine, this expectation usually proves unrealistic.[5]

Lawrence also points out that when autogynephiles are not accepted as the sex they want to be they can be vulnerable to narcissistic rage, which is defined as the “disproportionate, compulsive pursuit of revenge that seeks to obliterate both the offense and the offender.”[6] Extending legal protection to persons who want to present themselves as the other sex will give these narcissistic autogynephiles the right to pursue legal sanctions against those who will not go long with the lie that they have changed their sex. Given that “transsexuals” suffer from a “fundamental disorder” in their sense of self and are prone to narcissistic rage[7], there is every reason to believe that they will use such laws to ruthlessly attack anyone who speaks the truth.

If you want to understand the full potential of such wrath, consider the case of John Michael Bailey, whose book The Man who would be Queen provoked retaliation from a small group of persons who didn’t like being labeled autogynephiles. They used the Internet to make outrageous accusations against Bailey, attacking his children, trying to turn colleagues against him, and to have him fired from his job.[8]

Lawrence applies the following clinical description of narcissistic rage to Bailey’s opponents:

…need for revenge, for righting a wrong, for undoing a hurt by whatever means, and deeply anchored, unrelenting compulsion in the pursuit of all these aims… There is utter disregard for reasonable limitations and a boundless wish to redress an injury and to obtain revenge… The fanaticism of the need for revenge and the unending compulsion of having to square the account after an offense…The narcissistically injured… cannot rest until he has blotted out [the]… offender who dared to oppose him, to disagree with him.

Even if only a small number of autogynephiles are prone to narcissistic revenge, they could cause incredible harm to anyone who speaks the truth. They would see injury everywhere, file complaints, and institute lawsuits.

The laws adding “gender identity” to anti-discrimination legislation would allow men and women with serious psychological disorders, some of whom are prone to narcissistic rage and revenge to use the law to persecute business owners who are attempting to protect the privacy of customers in restrooms and locker rooms.

If “gender identity” is added to anti-discrimination legislation, the lie of “sex change” will be taught in the schools. It won’t be long before we will have children’s books about how Johnny’s daddy is now Johnny’s mommy and everyone is living happily ever after. Teachers and other school personnel will expect to be accepted in whatever form they appear. Mr. Brown will come back after summer vacation as Miss Brown.

Confused children with G[S]ID who need treatment are already being pushed down the path to surgical mutilation. Schools are being told that if an elementary school boy or girl believes that he or she is the other sex everyone should go along with this fantasy. The school should allow these troubled children to change their names, dress as the other sex, and use the restrooms of the other sex. Other children will be punished if they object or speak the truth.

And it gets worse. In some places, at age 11 these children who think they are the other sex are given puberty-blocking hormones so that secondary sexual characteristics do not appear. Then they are given hormones proper to the other sex, so that at age 18 they can be surgically mutilated. In other words, the entire educational, psychological, and medical establishment is conspiring to see that these children never receive proper treatment. There is no research on the long-term effects of these hormone treatments on developing the bodies and brain. Do we really believe that 11-year-old children have the judgment necessary to decide to permanently surrender their sexual identity and reproductive potential?

It seems like such a small change –- just add “gender identity” to anti-discrimination laws, but such a change discriminates against the truth and endangers children. We have an obligation to oppose it with all our energy.

One way is to stop using their language. Their words distort and deceive. I am currently working on Lexicon for the profamily movement. We need a common vocabulary so that we can speak the truth about the human person.

If you are interested in participating in the development of such a Lexicon or would like to view my suggestions, email me at dalemoleary@yahoo.com and request the paper “Don’t Say Gender When You Mean Sex.”


[1]GLSEN Jump Start Guide, “Gender-Related Terminology List.” [www.glsen.org/binary-data/GLSEN_ATTACHMENTS/file/000/000/966-1.pdf].

[2] Jamie Glazov (2005) “Our Culture, What’s Left of It,” Frontpage Magazine, August 3.

[3] Anne Lawrence, (2007) “Becoming what we love: Autogynephilic transsexualism conceptualized as an expression of romantic love,” Perspectives in Biology and Medicine, 50, 506-520.

[4] J. Michael Bailey (2003) The Man who would be Queen: The Science of Gender-Bending and Transsexualism, Washington, DC: John Henry Press.

[5] Anne Lawrence (2008) “Shame and Narcissistic Rage in Autogynephilic Transsexualism,” Archives of Sexual Behavior, 37: 457-461.

[6] H. Kohut (1971) The analysis of self: A systematic approach to the psychoanalytic treatment of narcissistic personality disorders, (NY: International Universities Press; H. Kohut (1972) “Thoughts on narcissism and narcissistic age,” Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 27:360-400.

[7] Lawrence, Ibid. A, Beitel (1985) “The spectrum of gender identity disturbances: An intrapsyhic model,” in B. W. Steiner, (ed) Gender Dysphoria: Development, Research, Management (NY: Pleum) pp. 189-206; U. Hartman et al (1997) “Self and gender: Narcissistic pathology and personality factors in gender dysphoric patients: Preliminary results of a prospective study,” International Journal of Transgenderism, http://www.symposion.com/ijt/ijtcf0103.htm.

[8] Alice Dreger (2008) “The controversy surrounding The Man Who Would Be Queen A case history of the politics of Science, Identity, and Sex in the Internet Age,” Archives of Sexual Behavior, 37: 366-421.

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author of One Man, One Woman and The Gender Agenda

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  • http://catholichawk.com PrairieHawk

    Thank you for the eye-opener. I have met “transgendered” people and I can see their intense suffering. I want solutions that will work for them, not perpetuate lies. And it is clear that society cannot afford to allow the lie of transsexuality to become embodied in law.

  • lanceworth

    Mr. Foley,

    Imagine if you woke up tomorrow the same person as you are today, only you inhabited your mother’s body. Transsexuality is not an issue that can be ‘discouraged’. Gender Variance is related to hormonal influences in the womb. The brain is influenced by hormones during development, and a person born with gender variance will have a brain shaped like that of the gender to which they ascribe.

    Quickly said: Gender is between the ears, not the legs.

    It is well known that reparative therapies (as you suggest–for children of all people!) are harmful to mind and heart. They’ve been tried and studied and only worsen things.

    And the pain PrairieHawk mentions above is the pain propagated by the horror of living in the wrong body, misunderstanding (such as is promoted in this article), discrimination and outright hate.

    Articles like this only continue this pain, and the attendant risks of suicide, addiction, and turning away from God. They also make it harder for people who are gender variant to have jobs and homes and be productive members of society. Most of the transWomen on the street are not there through choice, they’re there because they have no other options. Do you wish to encourage prostitution? By all means, continue to publish this.

    “Man looks on the outside, but GOD looks on the inside.” Whose eyes are you seeing through?

  • tinasd

    This article is so full of inaccuracies, half truths, and outright lies by thoroughly discredited “scientists” that it is difficult to know where to begin commenting, but the following is as good a place as any-

    “No one can change sex; it is written in DNA on every cell of our bodies. The people demanding “gender identity and expression” protection are physically normal men or women…”

    Anyone making this statement betrays an egregious lack of understanding of human genetics and its role (or lack thereof) in sexual differentiation and gender identity.

    The fact of the matter is that all people can NOT be genetically classified as XX females and XY males with no naturally occurring variations.

    Not only are people regularly born with genotypes like XXY (Klinefelter’s syndrome), XO (Turner’s syndrome) and various combinations of XX/XXY/XY in the same body (Chimerism), there are also those whose phenotype (observable physical form) does not match their genetics.

    There are in fact individuals with XX genotypes who are born with penises, testicles and develop male muscle/body fat/hair distribution (XX male or De la Chapelle’s syndrome) as well as XY individuals who are born with naturally occurring vaginas and develop breasts and female physiques (Complete Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome).

    There are also conditions related to hormonal and other chemical variations that are characterized by ambiguous genitalia, incongruous genitalia or spontaneous sex changes at puberty, such as Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, 5-alpha-reductase deficiency and 17-beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase deficiency.

    NONE of these people chose these conditions, yet many of them suffer social ostracism from the fact that their internal sense of their own gender may not fit what they look like on the outside…and to add insult to injury, what they look like on the outside is often the result of having their God-given form surgically altered at birth and modified with hormones in a mistaken attempt to reinforce the simplistic and ignorant idea that all people can easily be classified as one of two mutually exclusive “types”.

    This type of surgical/medical intervention in the name of “normalization” is not only the EXACT same treatment sought by transsexuals, it hypocritically flies in the face of the oft repeated fundamentalist mantras that “God doesn’t make mistakes” and “No one can change sex”.

    For all the talk from ignorant fundamentalist religionists about genotype being the essence of one’s true sex, when a person’s natural and non-life threatening genetic variations fall outside of the simplistic XX/XY *only* model, the first course of action is to use medical intervention to FORCE them into living as something other than what they really are, and to hide all evidence of their intersex nature or dismiss it as unimportant…and when these people grow up and get tired of living the sex/gender roles chosen for them- not by God but by man- they are most often dismissed as mentally disturbed transsexuals by these same ignorant fundamentalist religionists, who then refuse to acknowledge genetics as being of any importance.

    It is utterly shameless hypocrisy to pretend that genetics are the ultimate defining factor in sexual differentiation, but then turn around and pretend that only two genotypes exist, throwing out good science and denying the God-given genetic makeup of people who may have gender issues, simply because it doesn’t match one’s antiquated world view that was developed in a time when the science of genetics didn’t even exist.

    As a final note, it is also utterly shameless hypocrisy to characterize all transsexuals as deceptive and mentally disturbed, but to then quote one of them without qualification as some kind of scientific authority to be taken at face value, as this article does when it quotes Dr. Anne Lawrence who is a post-operative transsexual herself, who in her former life was a married father of two children…

    it would seem that the article’s author and his editors have no problem whatsoever with this kind of “deception” and helping to keep it going by not disclosing all the facts, as long as the allegedly “deceptive” transsexual’s opinions help to support their case.

  • profital

    Dear Mr. Foley, Your article has some blatant inaccuracies in it which need to be corrected.
    1) DNA is not an indicator of so-called true sex. There are females who are born females who have a so-called male DNA profile and are XY. Some are fertile as females and some are physically intersexed and after surgery are just like transsexuals after surgery.

    2) DNA is NOT even in all of the body cells. Mature red blood cells do not have DNA.

    3) One’s DNA can certainly be changed.

    http://www.gendercare.com/English/italianopaper1.html

    However, as I mentioned, since DNA does not indicate so-called true sex,
    such steps do not need to be applied. One becomes morphologically of the new sex
    whether they are intersexed or transsexual. In fact, some intersexed individuals whose DNA would indicate a so-called male profile, but who are externally female, do not even know that they are female somrtimes untill after marriage. This occurs forsome intersexed individuals whose DNA would indicate that they are so-called female but are externally physically male.

    Using DNA to try to substantiate your views has been disproven.

  • profital

    Some of the writing I did seems to have skipped. Let me clarify.

    In fact some intersexed individuals whose DNA would indicate a so-called male profile, but who have had babies, menstruated, have no male sex organs, but who are externally female, do not even know that they have a male typical DNA profile, not unlike typical males, sometimes until after marriage.

  • saet

    I doubt I have ever seen a more slanted, misinformed, and biased story written on the subject of gender identity. If the Catholic Church and this author have chosen to take a position on transsexuality, a medical issue, and those who have had, or intend to have, Gender Reassignment Surgery, the very least they could do is to base that position on science. It is disingenuous to ignore the more than 60 years of medical and psychological research done on this issue as the author has done. Shame on you.

  • Mary Kochan

    Since I am the editor, I will respond. I know and have long known about all the syndromes mentioned above wherein a genetic or post-conception accident results in some kind of disorder of intrauterine sexual differentiation. We can acknowledge that unwise and even cruel medical interventions have been done to these people and recognize that they deserve greater sensitivity to be dealt with justly.

    Catholics are not fundamentalists. Nevertheless, the statement that God doesn’t make mistakes is certainly true, but can be misapplied. We live in a contingent universe where our knowledge of causes is limited. What we do know is that regardless of what handicaps a person possesses, regardless of the burdens a person carries because of genetic, developmental, or other factors, every human being is given the grace needed to get from this life to the next.

    Perhaps you have seen the amazing video of the man who was born without limbs, but who is an astounding motivational speaker. There is no known medical reason for him being born that way. He was not a thalidomide baby. In the case of those people we do know what the interference in development was that caused their handicap. We know that their genotype does not match their phenotype. They have the genetic material to have arms, hands, legs, and feet, but something went wrong during development. In contrast, with Acheiropody a known recessive gene is responsible for the handless and footless people. Then, of course there are accidents that can occur at any time of life, an amniotic band can cause an intrauterine amputation of an otherwise properly developing limb. Injuries resulting in amputations can occur post-birth, either by accident or due to human negligence or even assault.

    Disordered sexual differentiation is the same. Our knowledge of why it happens is limited. In some cases we know why it occurs and what genes are involved. In some cases we do not. Sometimes the genotype matches the phenotype and in some cases it does not. Sometimes the accidents are genetic, sometimes they are developmental, sometimes they are both and as with so many things they lie along a continuum. Post-birth accidents can occur, even botched circumcision and mutilating criminal assault.

    Comes the question of the loving response.

    Lets go back to our analogy of people lacking, or having deformities of, appendages. We certainly do not begrudge them whatever medical or surgical intervention can help them. And we agree that our society needs to continue to improve in rendering justice and treating with human dignity every suffering person.

    But now let us consider the case of people who come to believe, even intensely to the point of overwhelming obsession, that one of their limbs does not belong to them, is foreign. Or what about a person who insists that he has a third arm? We are talking about a very real condition called Bodily Integrity Disorder. The disorder can even be found in the brain as a malfunction of the area of the brain that maps the image of the body. Should doctors amputate these unwanted limbs, thereby mutilating an otherwise functioning body part? Or should every effort be made to assist a person with this disorder to accept the reality that this limb belongs to him? What if the person with the phantom third arm should insist that another person closed it in a door and injured it? Should that person have to pay damages for the injury?

    We see here that we can make a distinction between observable conditions, such as a baby born missing an arm and a condition that is in the head of the person, such a someone who insists he or she possesses a third arm. Even if the mindmapping function of a person’s brain is disturbed so as to create certain illusions, they are still just that. They are illusions or delusions that we are not morally obligated to assent to.

    There is a young woman in England who says she is her boyfriend’s “pet” and wears a dog leash when he takes her out. So if she happens to damage property or injure someone, should the law have to accept her “pet” fantasy and require the boyfriend to be responsible for her as you would be responsible for your dog’s behavior? No. It would be another matter entirely were she a mentally handicapped person who was unable to function normally. But she cannot simply choose not to be a responsible person and force the rest of us to recognize it, even if her boyfriend wants to go along with her pretense.

    Ditto for the woman who mutilated herself by removing her breasts and who has now given birth to one child and is expecting another, but who wants to claim she is a man — assisted by media stupidity trumpeting the “Pregnant Man.” Even if her partner wants to go along with the pretense that she is a man, the fact is that she is a mutilated woman with fully functioning female sexual organs (other than when she disturbs their functioning through hormones) and she would have had fully functioning breasts and been able to nurse her babies if some doctor has not gone along with her insanity and removed her mammary tissue.

    The attempt to create a legal framework to force the rest of us to pretend she is a man is what we are talking about here. We are not talking about intersex people with disorders of sexual differentiation that cause ambiguous sexual identity and who may need various medical interventions including surgery.

    As for whether or not it is correct to make use of a quotation from a “transgendered” person: of course it is and we are not being hypocritical to do so. We recognize human beings as more than their medical condition, more than their “sexual orientation,” more than their mistakes and sins. We would never make a blanket dismissal of someone’s argument, research, or oeuvre based on a single aspect of their life or personality. Even after they have made what we see as the huge error of mutilating themselves in a futile attempt to switch genders (yes there are only two of them) we still believe in God’s grace working in their lives, we still believe they should not be subjected to unjust discrimination (all discrimination is not unjust, though) and we still believe in their ability to be contributing members of society, and certainly to contribute to our understanding of their experience.

  • lisanne

    You have validated something I wrote some years ago in response to the concerns of some within the transsexual community about Michael Bailey’s book, and its possible use as a weapon by those who seek to invalidate the legitimacy of transsexuals. My concern was that the extreme response of some members of the community would, in the end, cause far more damage than anything in Professor Bailey’s book. Seems I was quite right, but this gives me no pleasure. Nor does it give any pleasure to Professor Bailey or Dr. Lawrence.

    It is the responsibility of those in science to speak of truth. Michael Bailey wrote a book which, while being an anecdotal, not scientific volume, nevertheless contained observations based upon scientific theory that he accepted as valid. Part of that is the theory of autogynephilia, which many transsexuals are not especially comfortable with. As you are aware a “small group” of people within the transsexual community managed to create a lot of problems for Professor Bailey. But I do not believe that the actions of a small number have changed his basic view. Like Dr Lawrence, Anne Dreger and myself, we believe that transsexuals need legal protections. It matters not whether others believe them to be members of their perceived sex. One can’t legislate acceptance. They need protection because the medically accepted course of action is to normalize them in their perceived gender as much as is healthy for them.

    I understand that one’s religious views may have an effect on personal acceptance. But the laws of the various states within the United States have to consider the secular needs of its citizens. Deny transsexuals the right to be protected against discrimination and abuse and you increase the possibility that such events will transpire.

    The Christianity I know is one that doesn’t judge, and protects those who need the aid of others to survive. Actively seeking to undo the legal protections that already exist, as well as preventing those proposed in the future works against that concept. Lives do indeed hang in the balance when laws protecting the rights and lives of transsexuals are proposed. And to be Christian is to respect all life.

  • Mary Kochan

    The author has asked me to post this on her behalf:

    Christians are obliged to speak the truth in love. We cannot call black white, or white black. I cannot call a man a woman and tell my children to do the same. I cannot stand by and see mutilating surgery performed on those whom I acknowledge are suffering, and say nothing. I spent over six months researching the subject reading personal stories and published studies. My conclusion, those men who claimed to have a womans soul (or brain) didn’t convince me. Their understanding of what it means to be a woman was superficial. A woman is entrusted with the human person, called to motherhood, both physical and spiritual. Those women who claimed to be men inside did not convince me either.

    Mental health professionals, frustrated by the unwillingness of those with such problems to participate in meaningful therapy, may have given in to the demand for surgical solutions, but that doesn’t make it right.

    You ask for legal protection, but what kind of legal protection should we give? Freedom from violence. Of course. Protection due those suffering from a mental disorder. Yes, within limits. The right to change legal documents. No. Government financed operations. Absolutely not. The right to marry a person of their birth sex. No. The right to teach children that it is possible to surgically change a person’s sex. No. The right to speak the truth must be defended.

    Christians are instructed not to judge. A judge hears the evidence, renders a verdict, and passes sentence. I cannot judge an individual, because I don’t know what brought him to this point, what he has suffered. I leave the judgment of personal guilt or innocence to God’s mercy. We are not judging an individuals personal responsibility when we speak the truth about the condition. Indeed, we would be judged if knowing the truth we kept silent.

    Who loves more? The one who sees people suffering, but encourages them to remain in the condition, or the person who calls them to freedom. I am firmly convinced that so called sex changes are a dead end. They can never deliver what they promise and I do believe that no matter how far a person has gone down this road they can always choose a different path.

    Dale O’Leary

  • Pingback: Who’s to Blame? « Enough Non-Sense()

  • profital

    Dear Ms. O’Leary, I agree that we can’t call black white or white black. But I think that a problem here is that you are trying to see in black and white that which is of various shades of gray. There are various classifications of sex from phenotypic sex to so-called chromosomal, to hormonal sex, gonadal sex, and brain sex. The phenotypic sex of a m to f transsexual has definitely been changed from m to f. As I mentioned, the end result (one’s phenotypic sex) in a transsexual can be no different from persons who have arrived there with other conditions. For instance, some XY intersexed persons with an ambiguous phenotype which has been surgically adjusted now have a female phenotype which is not different than a m to f post-op transsexual. In terms of surgical procedures, you may feel that the ends do not justify the means in a transsexual, but only in someone with, for example, an obvious physical ambiguity. I see no advantage, rationale or practicality for focusing on the differing means to which they got there as opposed to the end result and workings of both of them being phenotypic females. I believe that they both should legally and morally be recognized as the facts indicate-now phenotypic females. There is no deception in this. I also do wonder if the 6 months or so with which you looked in to this was adequate to gain insight in to the intricacies of the situation. Although not proven, there is strong evidence for a brain neural cross coding which occurs in some individuals. I also must say that the so-called pregnant man has also been criticized
    by many if not most transsexuals as not being a legitimate comparison.
    There are those who claim to be transsexual who seem to have other issues.
    But for transsexuals who have chosen to change their phenotypic sex, there is no
    benefit to deny them the satisfaction of living according to their phenotype and social function while allowing (and sometimes even encouraging) someone
    with the same, simply because they manifested what was idealized as a more acceptable route to get there.

  • Mary Kochan

    “There is no deception in this.”?!

    I’m sorry to have to go into some gross detail, but this is too egregious in the falsification department to let go. No, so called transgendered male to females have not become phenotypically female. Even if their penis has been tuned inside out to provide a pocket that is a poor mimic of a vagina, there is no cervix, no womb, no ovaries, no fallopian tubes. This is a mutilated man.

    The female to male has to have a prothesis inserted to replicate erectile tissue using a pumping system. The labia are turned into a fake scrotum into which is inserted prosthetic “testicles” — which of course do not produce testosterone or sperm. They are for appearances.

    The entire thing is an elaborate costume. It is fakery all the way around. Elaborate fakery, true, but fakery nonetheless. To make the claim that these people have become phenotypically the other sex is an outrageous lie.

  • Lisanne

    Dale,

    The science of treating transsexuals is not a new development. It’s antecedents date back to before the word transsexual was coined. Early on it was ascertained that a transsexual’s conviction that they were born wrongly sexed was an immutable aspect of their personality. It was also observed that this condition had a serious adverse effect on the individual’s quality of life. Conventional therapies failed to sufficiently diminish the intensity of these feelings. The ultimate result was often severe depression, chemical dependence, and suicidal tendencies. It became apparent to a number of medical practitioners that the viable solution was to determine how such people could live productive lives, freed of the burden felt by their gender incongruity.

    Surgical solutions were devised by doctors as it became apparent that intermediate ones failed to relieve the intense emotional distress suffered by many transsexuals. It is well understood that this could lead to a negative outcome. Therefore candidates for this surgery are evaluated at length to decide whether they are psychologically prepared for the outcome. This is not considered lightly at all.

    While transsexuals do not like the use of the term “choice” there is a choice involved here. Quite often that choice is whether to live or die. This is not a choice for other people to make on their behalf. The perceived notion that society would benefit from taking that choice away is also not a valid one.

    Were there alternative therapies that proved effective a number of those who transitioned would not have done so. Many transsexuals live a significant portion of their pre-transition lives as members of their birth sex. Like as not, a certain amount of socialization takes place. For some, the need for acceptance at that time by some manifested itself in a intense need to be perceived as members of their birth gender. having built up survival defenses for a period of time it is often difficult to let go of them after transition. Especially so when we live a society where some condemn and reject their post-transition identities. Needless to say, the process of transitioning is not an easy one.

    It is not the intent of transsexuals to deceive. In environments where openmindedness is the expected norm, transsexuals are often quite open about their past histories. Others, in places where it takes some courage to live openly as a transsexual, do so because honesty is part of their identity.

    Many of the autobiographicals written by transsexuals are honest to a degree that some might find distressing. Some may confuse their readers into believing that transition was not necessarily the best path for this person. However, their histories are consistent with what practitioners in the field of gender counseling have come to expect.

    Lastly, we live in a society where respecting the rights of others has been the foundation of many of our laws and social practices. Over the course of the history of the United States the inclusion of more groups to the list of those accorded full rights have grown from a small number to practically an entire nation. Transsexuals, being a rather small minority, are still being denied rights and dignity. The limitations you believe to be just and correct would be considered horrific if applied to the circumstances of members of other groups.

    P.S. I share your concern that children, too young perhaps to understand their gender identity are often misdiagnosed with gender dysphoria. The intent here may be well meaning (at least in my observed view) but the wiser course would be to wait and see. The argument for such early intervention is that it eases the social trauma that would accompany a later transition. While this would hold true for children who are truly transsexual it often fails as the diagnosis may not consider other causations at length. Child psychology is a very difficult field, as children lack the complex reasoning skills that develop later.

    Lisanne Anderson

  • makk

    What would Jesus do?

    ENDA is designed to protect people from discrimination. Its that simple.

    People who don’t conform to societies expectations due to any number of circumstances are discriminated against. They are JUDGED and condemned for nothing more than that. They are vilified for not being man enough, or not being feminine enough. They are harassed; they are beaten; they are murdered all because they don’t conform.

    “Christians are obliged to speak the truth in love. We cannot call black white, or white black. I cannot call a man a woman and tell my children to do the same.”

    Who are you to judge what another person is or isn’t? If that person decides they are black, what right do you have to deny them their vision of reality? Since when is your version of what you see the “truth”? If I passed for a white person, would you deny me my whiteness, merely because you knew my heritage? If Ive had a black grandparent, and my skin is no longer ebony, what does that make me and why is it so important to you to judge that? Calling people things other than what THEY identify as isn’t Christian; its bigotry.

    “I cannot stand by and see mutilating surgery performed on those whom I acknowledge are suffering, and say nothing. I spent over six months researching the subject reading personal stories and published studies. My conclusion, those men who claimed to have a womans soul (or brain) didn’t convince me. Their understanding of what it means to be a woman was superficial. A woman is entrusted with the human person, called to motherhood, both physical and spiritual. Those women who claimed to be men inside did not convince me either.”

    If you did any real research at all, you would have found a great deal more evidence supporting medical intervention, than not. How much evidence will you need before you’re convinced?

    “Mental health professionals, frustrated by the unwillingness of those with such problems to participate in meaningful therapy, may have given in to the demand for surgical solutions, but that doesn’t make it right.”

    Medical health professionals absolutely agree that meaningful therapy is important, and they are hardly “giving in” to anyone. Perhaps you need to read what the AMA has to say on the subject before you assert that position.

    “You ask for legal protection, but what kind of legal protection should we give? Freedom from violence. Of course.”

    Then why vote against ENDA? Its whole purpose is to protect.

    “Protection due those suffering from a mental disorder. Yes, within limits.” Huh? What limits and who decides them? You?

    “The right to change legal documents. No. Government financed operations. Absolutely not. The right to marry a person of their birth sex. No. The right to teach children that it is possible to surgically change a person’s sex. No. The right to speak the truth must be defended.”

    Interestingly enough, you have proceeded to judge everyone in this instance. When one person isn’t free, then no one is. Who is to be the judge and jury of this? Who is a woman? What definition will suffice?

    “Christians are instructed not to judge. A judge hears the evidence, renders a verdict, and passes sentence. I cannot judge an individual, because I don’t know what brought him to this point, what he has suffered. I leave the judgment of personal guilt or innocence to God’s mercy. We are not judging an individuals personal responsibility when we speak the truth about the condition.”

    Unfortunately, you’re taking exactly this course. You’re judging who can and cannot be protected by the law. Of course you’re judging an individual’s situation when you use what you consider to be the truth against them.

    “Indeed, we would be judged if knowing the truth we kept silent.”

    Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. You don’t know the truth, and yet you’re ready to persecute anyone that doesn’t measure up to your definition of man or woman. Shame on you.

    “Who loves more? The one who sees people suffering, but encourages them to remain in the condition, or the person who calls them to freedom.”

    My MD called me to freedom. The last thing I need is some poorly informed religious person defining what freedom is to me. If you were really concerned about suffering, you would be arguing FOR ENDA, rather than judging a whole class of people you know so little about.

    “I am firmly convinced that so called sex changes are a dead end. They can never deliver what they promise and I do believe that no matter how far a person has gone down this road they can always choose a different path.”

    Firmly convinced? If you met me in a store, or in a church womans group meeting, you wouldn’t ever know that I was trans…because unless I show you my drivers license, it wouldn’t even cross your mind. You think it doesn’t work? Think again.

    What would Jesus do? He would love us all, just the way we are.

  • Mary Kochan

    No one is disputing that some men can do a very good job of impersonating a woman and that in a social situation they would be able to decieve someone that is what they are. That’s the point, btw. It is a deception.

    We aren’t disputing that Jesus loves, you or anyone else. He loves us all. He loves us as the sinners we all are and He died to set us free from that sin.

    The question of whether we can judge what someone is is a good one. We have to distinguish between the kind of judging that has to do with the condemning people and the highest function of the human intellect which is the making of judgements regarding what things really are.

    Again the question of whether it “works” is a question of making exactly that kind of judgement. You cannot be impregnated by a man, you cannot bear a child. You cannot be a mother. You never could and you never will. You are therefor not biologically a female member of the human species. You are not a woman whose capacity to do those things has been injured in some way as with a woman whose fallopain tubes are scarred so that she is unable to concieve, or a woman who has lost her uterus due to cancer surgery, or some such thing. You are not a woman if you were ever a man. And if you ever had a penis and testes and the abilty to father a child (regardless of whether you had the inclination to do so) you were and therefor ARE a male member of the human species.

    Racial categories are simply not analogous. There are not two races of human beings whose bodies are complemtarilly designed to further the species through reproduction. Racial categories lie along a continuum. Sex does not.

    What you mean by “works” is: Does it permit me to deceive others into thinking that I am a female? And does it work to relieve my dissatisfaction (I realize this is way too mild a word and would happily allow you to supply the one that correctly describes the feeling) with being male? And does it effectively facilitate my fantasy that I have changed my sex?

    It might “work” for those purposes. But does it “work” to make you female? No.

    Should you be protected by law? Certainly — just as any other person is protected. You should be have the freedom to earn a living, to live without being molested, to live free from fear of assault — just as we all should be.

    Should you be allowed to pretend with a man that you are a woman so that the man might unknowingly establish a romantic relationship with you thinking you are a woman? Should the law protect you doing that kind of emotional violence to another human being? Absolutely not. Should the law protect you from felonious assault by a man who was so wronged? Yes, of course. And it does. You already have all the protection you need under the law.

  • profital

    Dear Mary, You are wrong. It is fact that to f transsexuals are they are phenotypic females after sex change surgery.

    A) Ovaries are not considered part of phenotypic sex. They are considered gonadal sex. Women with androgen insensitivty syndrome (AIS)
    are technically phenotypic females (see Jean D Wilson in Principles of Internal Medicine) despite having two testes and no ovaries. (As in m to f transsexuals, the testes are removed).

    B) Internal ducts are not technically considered phenotypic sex either.
    Women with androgen insensitivity syndrome AIS are phenotypic females despite not having a womb, Fallopian tubes or a cervix). (Again see Jean D Wilson in Principles of Internal Medicine, although this is universally accepted).

    C) Phenotypic sex is usually understood as the morphology of the external genitalia.

    http://www.ansci.wisc.edu/jjp1/ansci_repro/lec/handouts/hd3.html

    http://www.umich.edu/~kcourses/f99/mvs443/Reproduction/tsld014.htm

    D) After extensive medical examination, Renee Richards was declared to be female because the record contained ample evidence that “anatomically she was indistinguishable from an hysterectomised and ovariectomised woman.”
    Richards vs. U.S. Tennis Association, NY Supreme Court, 1977.

    E) The neovagina constructed by such surgery “was a cavity, the walls of which are lined initially by the skin of the penis” but later “taking on the characteristics of normal vaginal mucosa. Plaintiff had no uterus or cervix, but her vagina was “the same as a normal female vagina after a hysterectomy”. MT. vs. JT., NJ Superior Court, 1976.

    Again, women with AIS often have a vaginal dimple, but normal vaginal mucosa after surgery. This has occured in transsexuals also. In fact, skin grafts for vaginoplasty usually adapt to their environment and become normal vaginal mucosa. See abstract

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15935544?ordinalpos=4&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

  • Mary Kochan

    Oh, profital, please. I have more of an education in biology than to fall for such patent nonsense. Phenotype refers to the complete expression of the genes. Unless you can find some other way for the normal internal organs of an animal to appear other than as an expression of the genes, you are really in trouble here.

    You have a liver because a liver is something coded in your genes. Now it is possible, say, for a child to be born with liver tissue growing outside of the body or in the wrong place due to an accident of development. But to claim that only the outside, visible parts of the body constitute the phenotype and the internal organs do not is simply ludicrous. This distinction between “gonadal sex” and phenotype does not exist. The phenotype is EVERYTHING genetic expressed internally and externally.

    Again stop relying on various spectrum disorders to make the case. They don’t change a thing — that is why they are disorders (reread my analogy with the missing/extra limbs).

    I should add that AIS is known to be caused by a mutation on the gene that contains the code for the androgen receptor. Therefor the condition is the expression (phenotype) of a genetic mutation.

    In the case of male to female so-called transgendered person, his vagina, regardless of how carefully constructed, is just that — a thing that is constructed, that is not an expression of his genes. It is not his in the way that the vagina of a woman is hers. Ditto with the penis of a female to male so-called transgendered person. Nor has it been constructed to correct a developmental problem as may be the case in surgery to enlarge a partially developed vagina in a person with AIS. The male to female so-called transgendered person did have body parts that expressed his genetic makeup, but he had them removed or mutilated.

  • profital

    Dear Mary,
    I studied biology under Elof Carlson and I am also a physician. There is generally 7 criteria of sex. Genetic sex, gonadal sex, internal genital duct sex, external genital sex, hormonal sex, secondary sex chanracteristics and brain sex. Some consider just 3 criteria. Genetic sex, gonadal sex and phenotypic sex.
    Gonadal sex in medicine is just not equated with phenotypic sex.

    http://books.google.com/books?id=htuKWWGrzGsC&pg=PA64&lpg=PA64&dq=phenotypic+versus+gonadal+sex&source=bl&ots=2kgD6nOtiF&sig=QX8pihJfKUwRZoQN6rmNqFFLmbs&hl=en&ei=-o1JSpe8JeSwtgeInrS9Ag&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=7

    But even if we were to agree that everything which is not a genotype is a phenotype, your statement that “phenotype refers to the complete expression of the genes” is only a half truth. Phenotype is the interaction between the genes
    AND the environment. Embryos have the ability to develop into males or females
    (phenotypically) IRREGARDLESS of their genotype. If the genotype is totally typical-even typically XY, without any alteration in the androgen receptor, environmental factors (pollutants, teratogens and so on) can still cause these individuals to become female or physically intersexed. Surgery is certainly an environmental factor which changes the sexual phenotype from male to female. That was my point in using AIS (and there are 7 degrees of insensitivity)-that phenotypically there is no phenotypic sex difference after a sex change in a m to f transsexual and some persons with AIS. That is a fact. You went on to mention that AIS persons have an alteration in the androgen receptor gene. But I was talking about phenotypic differences, and again as I mentioned, there are XY individuals who are females with no altered genes but with altered environment.
    Surgery can be applied to those with ambiguous phenotypes or non ambiguous phenotypes with EXACT end results.
    The reason is again that embryos have the capacity to become male or female despite their genotype. This is built into the genes, granted, BUT also depends on envrionmental factors. You mention that a “transsexual’s vagina is a thing that is constructed, that is not an expression of his genes”. First, he is not the correct pronoun, although you will disagree with me on that. But you are incorrect in saying that what is constructed is not an expression of the genes.
    Well it is not directly an expression, but it need not be direct to qualify as a phenotype. Again, phenotype requires not only gene expression but ALSO environmental influences. The skin of the patient (which is directly an expression of the genes) is used to initially line the cavity for the vagina.
    But the part which you are incorrectly disregarding is that the skin graft when put in this location undergoes what is believed by some to be metaplasia and becomes normal vaginal mucosa even under the microscope. But regardless of how it does, it is normal vaginal mucosa. It doesn’t matter if the individual is XX or XY or if the individual had a 2 or 3 cm vagina common in AIS (But by the way, some AIS individuals have only a dimple or no vagina at all). The end result is normal vaginal mucosa. In fact the contructed part of the neovagina in
    AIS phenotypic females is NO different than the 2 or 3 cm which was already present. As far as vaginoplasty not being performed in transsexuals to correct a developmental so-called problem, that may not be true either. Although not proven, there is strong evidence (at least 6 papers) that certain brain networks in transsexuals are that of the individual’s psychological sex.

  • profital

    Dear Mary, here is the reference which I wanted to provide to illustrate that
    in medical speak, gonadal sex and phenotypic sex are considered seperate categories.

    http://books.google.com/books?id=zunYrumtsR8C&pg=PA203&lpg=PA203&dq=gonadal+versus+phenotypic+sex&source=bl&ots=3zwAMTpjZu&sig=ion-EhLeTMeQU0eo5jx1FHtNe9Q&hl=en&ei=EY1JSrrAD9L6tgeK4pSjBg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4

    But I don’t wish to engage in semantics as much as make the point that
    genotype + environment = phenotype.

    The fact is that skin grafts when put in the area where the vagina exists in humans actually becomes real and vaginal. As I said, whether it is metaplasia or whether it is due to the fact that in this area in people in general was the cloaca (just covered over in men) which maintains the capacity to develop into the lower vagina, it is a remarkable example of environmental factors causing a phenotype. Another example would be breast tissue. MtF transsexuals who are admnistered both estrogen and progesterone are able to develop breasts which are histologically identical to typical female breasts even with a typical female ductal system which in some cases have been functional (some transsexuals have been known to breastfeed even though they haven’t been pregnant when administered Pitocin).

    But whether a transsexual can be as female after surgery as some born intersexed persons after surgery may not be as much of a disagreeable point we have when compared to whether the end (result) justifies the means (surgery) if applied to a transsexual person.

  • profital

    Mary you wrote

    “You are not a woman if you were ever a man. And if you ever had a penis and testes and the abilty to father a child (regardless of whether you had the inclination to do so) you were and therefor ARE a male member of the human species.”

    This is simply not accurate. I see that you don’t define man or woman here, but would only be based upon chromosomes. A person can definitely go from fertile man to infertile woman.

    But it is also a fact that there are individuals who have had a penis and testes and fertility as a male but were also hermaphroditic and had a uterus and/or Fallopian tubes. They are not a male member of the human species, but they are intersexed.

  • princesswarrior

    This whole article/article defense makes my head hurt just trying to wade through it. Not because of any conviction I feel after reading it, but from the poor science, questionable logic, and religious zealotry that is being passed off as objective journalism. As an editorial piece, which seeks to create an emotional response in favor of the mother church, this is pretty well written.

    I contend, however, that once it departs from emotion it runs into trouble on Biblical as well as scientific grounds, and because the logic is flawed at key points. I am addressing just the theological issues I see as most pressing. The science has been addressed quite sufficiently, and the logic flaws are too much for this response.
    At the outset, let me address the issue of titles and title usage to the author and the editor. Ms Kochan and Ms O’Leary, in my research into your backgrounds and positions, I have seen that you both identify as Catholic Apologists and journalists in the vast majority of the public record. That there is precious little in the way of biographical information, or professional credentialing is cause for concern, but there is a lot to be said from honest self education, so I will accept your self-identification as such. That is what you would want me to do, is it not?
    In the same way, I and others like me who were assigned male gender at birth but have always known we were women, identify ourselves as transgender women (and the man who is pregnant identifies himself as a man). You do not like that, and you would prefer to call me a misguided, or surgically mutilated man, and the gentleman in Oregon a woman, but you have to know that there are also many who object to your calling yourselves journalists, they would rather call you political hacks, religious bigots and drivel merchants.
    Do you think they have the right to call you those things? No, they do not. No more than you have a right to disrespectfully address us in the way you have in this series of articles/defenses. Changing the words does not change the issue. Showing respect is not a sin, but not showing respect is.
    If this was an objective piece, rather than an editorial camouflaged as journalism, as the editor and as the author, you would not have felt a need to defend, quite vehemently in some cases, the veracity of the piece. To paraphrase the Bard, “The ladies doth protest too much, Methinks.”

    Our Lord made no response in His own defense at any point in his life. In addition, he reserved his harshest rebukes, in fact His ONLY rebukes, while on earth, for the leaders of what constituted the equivalent of the church in that day. He did not push anyone away, he did not deny anyone comfort, he did not speak condemnation to anyone save the religious leaders.

    I say this as a lead in to my point…it seems clear to me that the underlying premise to this article is the theological belief that there is a basic immorality in transgender people that makes them unclean and necessitates your efforts to get us to clean up our act or we can never come to Jesus. The truth is, I do not need to clean up my act and come to Jesus. I already came to Him, and He is cleaning up my act as a result, more some days than on others, but that is my fault. He is doing this in the order he sees most fitting, and he has not said anything about my gender change yet. IF that IS something on His list, then there are currently more important things that He is working on, and we have not gotten around to that one yet.

    The part of this piece that bothers me the most is not the factual error, or the logic flaws, or the use of discredited pseudo research. It is that those who represent my Lord feel that they have to hide behind legal and scientific mumbo-jumbo. I see it in a lot of stuff the church does.

    It has a name.

    Hypocrisy.

    Speaking the truth in love is a funny phrase, when you are using people like NARTH, Bailey, Dreger, and Lawrence for your sources. It is unfortunate that the only thing resembling scientific work you could find in support of your position is of highly questionable veracity.

    I learned a long time ago to vet my sources, and make sure they don’t come back to haunt me and let me down when things get hard.

    The American/western church has adopted a very bad habit. In order to keep our desire for a dominant church morality, those who call themselves our leaders have opted to frame every moral issue as a scientific or sociological issue. That is not what proclaiming the gospel is about. It is, in fact counterproductive. Jesus said, “Come unto me ALL who are weary and I will give you rest.” He did not say clean yourselves up, He did not say those of you who have been good this week, He said ALL who are weary and heavy laden. Prostitutes, come. Drug dealers, come. Junkies, Come. Gay people, Come. Transgender people, Come. Bankers, y’all must be worn the heck out, come. Priests and clergy, Come, but it is my way or the highway. AND I WILL GIVE YOU REST. Rest from having to sell yourself. Rest from having to sell drugs. Rest from whatever is wearing you down. Come ahead. We will figure it out, cause my yoke is easy, and my load is light. HE will change those who need to change in the way HE wants them to. No other man has that right to decide for me what I need to change, only Jesus.
    Speaking the truth in love means being willing to tell the hurting that there is rest, in Jesus. That is the truth. It is judgment to tell those in pain they need to change anything before they come to Jesus. Maybe they don’t need to change their life like you did, because they may have junk you know nothing about that will kill them if they do it your way. IT IS GODS JOB to make those changes, and He is a whole lot better at it than you or some old white German guy. And as I read my Bible, He has reserved that task to Himself. He is patient and merciful now because He wants to give as many people as He can the opportunity to bring their burdens to Him and rest.

    This is the age of grace, a time when God has ordained mercy through the cross. You cannot show mercy with a club.

    It is just about time to end my response. I am not to address the remaining points, that has been done eloquently by others, and the pearls have been trampled, but you need to hear this little factoid I discovered:

    2001, Dr. Bailey co-published a paper advocating abortion as an ethical means to terminate the pregnancy if the child was determined to be homosexual while still in the womb. It appears from that same paper that Dr Bailey believes that homosexuality is an evolutionary product and is inherited rather than a choice. (Parental Selection of Children’s Sexual Orientation, Aaron S. Greenberg, JD, and J. Michael Bailey, PhD Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 30, No. 4, 2001)

    In the same paper, Dr. Bailey states, “playing God is a theological objection that derives its force, if any, from religious doctrine. It has no place in a secular moral and policy analysis.” It appears that in your efforts to show that the devil is at work, you embrace the devil himself. You are quoting people who think you have no place in their discussion.

  • mdhoerr

    We are getting distracted by the obviously abnormal cases. No one is saying that there is something wrong with medical intervention when there is a physically observable gender difference that can be confirmed by a third party: chromosomal, gonadal, etc. The question is what to do when the only evidence of gender mismatch is the perception of the person affected, and possibly a brain difference. (Profital says that “Although not proven, there is strong evidence for a brain neural cross coding which occurs in some individuals.”)
    Mary Kochan cites “Bodily Integrity Disorder”. The example she gave was a person who believes he has a third arm where none can be observed. A change could even be seen in the brain as well — in other words, the person who believed that he had a third arm could be said to have a “three-armed” brain, rather than the usual “two-armed” brain.
    To follow the transsexual analogy, then, we would say that this person requires reconstructive surgery to add a third arm, and failing that, we should at least recognize that he is a three-armed person. And since some people are born with three arms, some with two, some with one, and some with none, we should recognize and accept a gray area in “arm-ness”.
    Profital says there are 7 criteria of sex: genetic, gonadal, internal genital duct, external genital, hormonal, secondary and brain. In the case where every criteria other than brain sex is one gender, why should we assume the brain is right and every other indicator is wrong? Even assuming there were a clearly identifiable way of determining that a brain is a different gender than the rest of the body, why is the proposed treatment to change every other physical attribute?
    Again, why don’t we treat the person who believes he has a third arm by giving him one? Why don’t we treat the person who believes her arm doesn’t belong to her by amputating it?

  • Dale O’Leary

    As the author, of the original piece I have found the exchange of information interesting, but I am concerned that some readers may not understand what is going on here. Those pushing for “acceptance” of persons who want to present themselves in public as the other sex — men presenting as women, women presenting as men, with or without surgery (transsexuals/transgendered) — have used the difficulties of persons with disorders of sexual development (DSD) to confuse the issue.
    It is true that there are a number of different conditions – genetic and congenital – that make determining the true sex of a child difficult. Persons with DSD have in the past been referred to as “hermaphrodites” and more recently as “intersexed.” At one time physicians tried to solve the problem by operating on baby boys with damaged or undeveloped penises to make them look externally like girls. This practice has been abandoned. The goal now is to determine the true sex and avoid all unnecessary surgery.
    All this has nothing to do with the question at hand. All persons who claim to have the mind of one sex and the body of another are supposed to be tested to be sure that they do not suffer from a DSD. Persons who want to be the other sex are physically normal males and females. The problem is psychological, but those with this problem resist therapy, particularly when they understand that their resistance will be rewarded by frustrated therapists, who will go along with their request for a surgical solution.
    Another point of confusion is the use of the term “gender.” Many people think that “gender” is simply a polite substitute for the word “sex,” but those who introduced the term “gender” had an agenda. They insisted our “sex” (male or female) may be a biological given, but our “gender” (masculine or feminine or something else) is a social construction. According to this theory, the way we think about being a man or woman is determined by how we were treated as children. John Money, a controversial therapist, who pushed “sex change” surgery, used the tragic case of one twin whose penis was destroyed during a circumcision procedure to forward his theory that “gender identity” (the sex we feel like) could be manipulated. He claimed that this boy was raised successfully as a girl. It turned out that the boy never accepted being a girl and Money hid his failure.
    However, the idea that “gender,” a social construct that could change — could be different from the biological reality “sex” — persisted.
    The “trans” community argued that they were “transgendered” and had the brains (souls) of one sex and the bodies of another. Some wanted surgery and/or hormones to “fix” their problem. With or without surgery, they demanded acceptance as the other sex.
    But that is precisely what we cannot give them. We can’t demand that they have therapy. Even if surgery were banned in this country, they could go aboard and find doctors willing to do it, but we have the right to speak the truth – surgery and hormones do not change a person’s sex.
    Those who have undergone surgery insist they are content, but reading their stories, one sees what they are unwilling to admit. In spite of all their pain and suffering, they never really become the other sex, only imitations. Even were all the laws to change and everyone forced to pretend, they could still read the truth in our eyes. Given all this, the defensiveness and the anger, we see in their comments are understandable.

  • profital

    Dale, you make a few errors.
    One is where you state “determining true sex can be difficult”
    Another is where you state “The goal now is to determine the true sex”

    Since you yourself have digressed to talking about so-called DSD let’s face facts. There is no such thing as true sex other than intersex. If you think true sex is DNA, what about those so-called DSD people who are chimeric?
    Half of their cells are XX and half are XY. They often have so-called true hermaphroditism where they also have one ovary and one testis. So much for
    gonads being true sex. They often have ambiguous genitalia. So much for that being true sex. The doctors try to avoid harmful surgeries which will cut down
    on sensation whil realizing that since there is no true sex, that a GENDER
    assignment may not reflect what is in someone’s brain. (Well maybe brain sex is true sex).
    Another error you mentioned were your claim that hormones and surgery don’t change a person’s sex, when they clearly do change the hormonal and morphological and hormonal sex respectively.
    Still another error is where you claim that they never really become the other sex, only become imitations of the other sex as if procreative function
    or lack of (such as ovaries uterus) defines really.
    P.S. we don’t know that transsexuals are so-called normal. Evidence
    strongly suggests that their brain has an opposite sex to other criteria.

  • Lisanne

    Princess Warrior,

    The credentials of Bailey, Lawrence and Dreger are well established. Attempting to discredit them is ineffective as it is easily disproved. As leading researchers in their various specialties they are very much the best sources, if they are quoted in a proper context.

    It is not the right focus for a rebuttal.

    Dr. Lawrence wrote of an observed phenomenon affecting some transsexuals that was irrelevant to any of Ms. O’Leary’s arguments. Professor Bailey’s difficulties, created by a small group of transsexual activists, bear no relevance to whether transsexuals should be accorded the same rights as every other citizen of a country or state.. Ms. Dreger is a well-respected medical ethicist who recently received a Guggenheim Award for her work. All are members in good standing of professional societies. Their work is published by respected journals.

    Certain activists were, and many still are, very disturbed by Dr. Ray Blanchard’s theory of autogynephilia. They feel it is a misrepresentation of the etiology of transsexualism. It is specifically distressing as it precisely defines criteria for inclusion in this subgroup, based upon age, martial history and several other factors. A significant number of transitioners fall within its parameters. When “the Man Who Would Be Queen” was released it was feared that the term autogynephilia would become vernacular. As stated above, some took their frustration to extremes. The actions they took, as wrong as they were from an ethical perspective, cannot be used as a blanket condemnation of transsexuals. Neither can Alice Dreger’s article on the controversy. That is being misused in this fashion is a expected, but still unacceptable result.

    The need we all have in common as a community is to present ourselves in a manner that shows the world that we are responsible and valuable members of the greater community which consists of the entire world. It’s my hope that eventually we convince enough members of society that it is to their benefit to accept us without caveat.

    Lisanne Anderson

  • Mary Kochan

    Granted profital, that phenotype is affected by environment. But you cannot elide phenotype into morphology and then from there disconnect it from genotype and turn it into a wax nose to shape anyway you want for any purpose.

    And you don’t want to really. For example, you don’t want art teachers to be forbidden from telling their students that Vincent Van Gogh was insane or was experiencing some kind of psychotic episode when he cut off his ear. But what right do we have to judge that he was not in his right mind? By what right do we remove the knife from the hand of a friend who threatens harm to himself? So what if he has determined to alter his phenotype by cutting off his own hand? Who are we to judge that he is wronging himself? You would, though, I am sure.

    Well, was the desire of Van Gogh to remove his ear part of the environment that shaped his phenotype? Was the knife part of the environment? After all you are claiming that the desire of a man to be a woman and the surgery that accomplishes that desire is part of the environment that shapes the phenotype of a man into that of a woman. So everything now is phenotype. Every plastic surgery, every piercing, every tattoo — it’s all phenotype. Phenotype now means nothing.

    But I don’t think that is really where you want to go, even though it is a logical conclusion of where you already went.

    If you are going to use disorders to make your case, what is to stop a man from claiming that inside he knows he is a monkey; maybe he desires to have sexual relations with monkeys. After all, some humans are born with hair and some are born with tails. Why can’t he demand that doctors perform surgery on him to make him a monkey? Why can’t he have the legal status of an animal once the surgery is complete.

    What about people with multiple personality disorder? What about a male with MPD who has female alters? When they are in control of the body, why can’t he go into the ladies room? Why can’t they demand that others “respect” them enough to use their alternate name and go along the identity they assert? What about a female with MPD? Why can’t she register for school and get a driver’s license under the name of her male alter, if she has one?

    But this “transgendered” thing is different, isn’t it? Legally, logically, no; it is not. But really it is. Because it has to do with sex — and the determination has been made that sexual freedom is to be prized above all things — above reality, above freedom of speech, above freedom in any other area of life.

    So we can tell people they are insane and we can refuse to legally recognize their lack of sound mind — unless it has to do with sex.

    Sex is privileged. And it should be. This is one area where you and the Catholic Church agree. Sex is special. CS Lewis hit on this in one of his essays when he asked why there were no stage shows where someone, as suspenseful music played, slowly lifted the lid on a roast but there are stage shows where a woman slowly undresses. But we have to know why sex is special.

    It is special because sex is the way God populates heaven. Kind of a roundabout method, yes. He could have made us all one at a time, the way He made the angels, every one a distinct species. But He has this thing for relationship, for families, for the baby at the breast and the young man on bended knee holding out the ring and popping the question.

    Sex is about life-giving love. God has a thing for that too. Look at the Cross.

    What sex is for goes to the heart of this, because selfishness causes death and is the opposite of life-giving love. The selfishness of a man who would deprive his own children of their father in order to pursue his own desires – whether we are talking about Governor Sanford taking off to Argentina, or a man undergoing “sex change” surgery – is in opposition to the heart of God, who reveals Himself as Father. Any person who for any reason mutilates his or her organs of procreation has turned from life-giving love toward selfishness. And as all the poets and the literature of the ages attest, no one more loathes himself or herself than that “wretch concentered all in self.”

    Interesting that the question should turn to the issue of whether “God loves me just the way I am” – because that is exactly the wrong question. The question to ask is if you love yourself just the way you are. What could evince more self-loathing than intentional mutilation of those very organs that God gave you for procreating, for passing onto future generations of human beings life itself? A man who says he should have been born a woman has told his own children they should not exist – even ones that are born. He has willed non-existence for those eternal beings that God has privileged him to share in giving life to. These are death-dealing wounds – like women who tell their own children they should have aborted them.

    What the Church enjoins is that you love yourself – affirm the goodness of your own existence — so that you may love others as yourself and affirm the goodness of their existence.

    Medicine properly restores to correct natural function, where possible, what accident – including genetic mutation or developmental anomalies — has injured or deformed. Medicine employed for the selfish mutilation of the body, including “transgender” surgery is medicine turned against the human person and perverted in its purpose.

    And now the same is being attempted with the law. The law, which should protect the right to life is being more and more perverted to be employed in the service of death.

    And on top of that we, who are citizens of this once free republic are being told that we have no credentials to speak on what laws must bind us because unless one is a specialist with an elite education one cannot judge this matter. I won’t even put in words the contempt I have for this viewpoint — and I am also mindful that I in no way want that contempt to be seen as falling upon the troubled person who made that assertion. All should note though that these demands end in tyranny. They always have and they always will.

    What finally do we say to the people who have already harmed themselves by undergoing these procedures? We cannot pretend along with you. But, we certainly affirm that you are loved and lovable. We don’t want to see you hurt. It is hard for us to conceive even of how anyone can hurt you more than you have hurt yourselves – but we oppose any kind of injustice or persecution against you. You don’t have to “prove” you are responsible and valuable members of society to be regarded as full members of the human family. All human beings have intrinsic eternal value. We want you in heaven with us. (We even want the irresponsible members of the human family in heaven with us.) But if you try to force us by decree to participate in the deception you have chosen, we will have to oppose you for the good of our families and our children.

  • Terri Kimmel

    “Because it has to do with sex — and the determination has been made that sexual freedom is to be prized above all things — above reality, above freedom of speech, above freedom in any other area of life.”

    And so the crux of the conflict is exposed.

  • profital

    Dear Mary, You wrote-
    “Granted profital, that phenotype is affected by environment. But you cannot elide phenotype into morphology and then from there disconnect it from genotype and turn it into a wax nose to shape anyway you want for any purpose.”

    That is not what I am doing and that is not what occurs on a natural basis to persons who have a so-called normal genotype which nonetheless is not reflected in their phenotype because of the environment. Just as phenotype can be seperated
    in nature due to a teratogen or other environmental factor, it can also be seperated by other means. Again, person A may not have a problem with an XY person who had an ambiguous phenotype due to a teratogen getting feminizing surgery and referring to them legally and morally as a woman, but would have a problem with a transsexual who does that. Person may not have a problem with either case. I am with person B. I also think your writing “sex change” is
    wrong, since sex is not a genotype, but is a phenotype.

    You write-
    And you don’t want to really”

    Well again it depends on the reasoning. I think those who see transsexualism as a mental problem are likely to reach seperate conclusions from those who beleive that the brain may be reversed in sex in transsexuals, and that it (the brain) is the window in to the soul. Some could argue that the brain is the most important sex organ. I also don’t see a person who has schizophrenia or a comparable condition as relevant to this. Due to a malfunctioning brain, such people can indeed think they are a ostrich, a chair or a snowflake . Clearly their brain is malfunctioning. Their brain is not like that of a ostrich, a chair or a snowflake. But it is very likely that a transsexual’s brain is that of the sex they think they are. I don’t see why operations in persons who are intersexed should in priniciple be accepted, let’s say if the only variable which conflicts is genitalia, whereas someone whose only variable which conflicts is brain sex should not be accepted.

  • Mary Kochan

    Quoting profital: “I don’t see why operations in persons who are intersexed should in principle be accepted, let’s say if the only variable which conflicts is genitalia, whereas someone whose only variable which conflicts is brain sex should not be accepted.”

    Several reasons:

    1. As said above it is a perversion of the purpose of medicine which is to serve the good of the human person. It does not do that because it destroys otherwise healthy functioning. (That there is otherwise healthy functioning is clear most especially in the case of people who have fathered or given birth to offspring and who assert they are really of the opposite sex.)

    2. It attempts something impossible, which is to turn a man into a woman or vice versa. Since that is impossible, it is exploitive in the extreme of the people upon whom it is practiced, regardless of their delusion that this is what is being accomplished. It is simply wrong to further someone in a destructive delusion.

    3. Once the surgery, round of surgeries, I should say, are completed, the person upon whom this mutilation has been accomplished (very understandably, given the tremendous investment in money, pain, time and emotional trauma) seeks affirmation from society that the wished for transformation has indeed been accomplished. This involves drawing others into the web of deceit the person has created for him or her self. This desire for affirmation that cannot be given is so adamant that it is even leading to restrictions on freedom of religion and speech and limitations on freedom of association will be right behind.

    Case in point: so called male to female transgendered persons have been rejected by some Lesbians (and feminists who are not Lesbians), with some Lesbian groups limiting membership to “women born women.” They are refusing to accept them as “real women” (and I daresay they should know.) Don’t know if there have been any lawsuits about it yet, but “gender discrimination” legislation should take care of that, right? Because if you can’t convince people, you just need to use a gun to shut them up and make them pretend. (The power of the state in the final analysis is the power of coercive force.)

  • Mary Kochan

    To profital, Lisanne, et al,

    Given that I think the conversation is likely to wind down here soon, I just want to thank you for your participation in these comboxes. You have made this a more interesting and educational experience for our readers (and for yours truly) and we do wish you God’s very best.

  • Terri Kimmel

    I just have some anecdotal comments…

    I have had experiences with two men who were “passing” as women. (I’m sorry, I don’t know the politically correct terminology for this.) The first was a person who had beautiful, long, wavy, golden hair, perfectly manicured fingernails, expensive, designer women’s clothing–and a big adam’s apple, sculpted, muscular, masculine legs, a masculine face shape, big hands, etc. This is someone who lived in the same town as me and I saw from time to time. This person once used the bathroom stall next to me in a department store. No, I didn’t like it.

    Another person with whom I have had contact was a neighbor of my grandmother’s. Same story with the appearance. Grandma, who is old and naive of such things, said to me, “I just can’t figure her out. There’s something very different that doesn’t quite seem consistent, something she’s holding back or hiding. I told her that “she” was born a “he”. How did I know this? The physical transformation was impossible to complete. Grandma lived in a nice neighborhood in a big city. Her neighbor had the money for surgeries, hair color, expensive cosmetics, etc., but still couldn’t pull off the deception.

    I know that human beings are created for more than sexual exploitation and know that a gay lifestyle is intrinsically disordered, but I have had no trouble being friends with gay individuals in the past. They were up front with me and as long as they didn’t expect me to condone their destructive private lifestyles, there was no issue. People who are obviously one thing and want me to believe they are something else are scary, though. If I am expected to play along with this “I’m really a physical woman” fantasy, with what other kind of insanity will I be expected to comply? It violates personal boundaries. It ignores the right of individuals to assess the objective truth of something and live according to reality. It’s extremely dangerous.

    I have no problem accepting that someone’s phenotype and genotype don’t match. I do have a problem being expected to live a lie. I won’t do it. Making it illegal for people to live according to the truth would be a disaster.

    This isn’t about a baseline for respecting human dignity. It’s about legitimizing and institutionalizing a lie.

  • profital

    Mary, you wrote-
    2. “It attempts something impossible, which is to turn a man into a woman or vice versa. Since that is impossible, it is exploitive in the extreme of the people upon whom it is practiced, regardless of their delusion that this is what is being accomplished. It is simply wrong to further someone in a destructive delusion.”

    This is false. It is not true what you are stating. You are buying into the deception. The facts are as in the Renee Riuchards case
    ***Most of the medical testimony indicates she is a woman, not in the sense that she gives birth, but socially and physically. She can’t test out as a woman in every regard, but she is a woman.***
    ***According to overwhelming medical evidence, this person is now female and
    thus entitled to compete.***

    Those are the facts. Deny all you want and lie and make false claims of deception. People still won’t listen to true facts like yourself and some still don’t believe Galileo either. Subsequent posts or other editing by yourself notwithstanding. The morphological sex DOES change from male to female.

  • Lisanne

    It’s been a most interesting dialogue, but I do believe that we have reached the point where the patience of our readers grows small.

    Social change is a slow progress. But it is a necessary one. Tolerance is more important than phenotypes. Science is not going change people’s attitudes. Had I a magic wand that could change transsexual women into biological and genetic ones it would still not change the attitudes of a number of people. It is understandable that this is so. Gender is still a dividing line, and those who cross it can be considered “invaders” by some, and imitations by others. I do rather suspect that if we eventually developed into a society where one’s gender was not an extremely significant part of one self-definition transsexuality would cease to be.

    In the meantime, it is important for our survival that we have the same rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as any other American. We can only be certain of that when various legislation is passed that specifically provide us with the protection of law.

    Perhaps we will.all meet again at some future time. It is even possible that our views might grow closer.

    Lisanne

  • polly

    After a discussion from entrenched positions, that is a lovely sentiment to close on, Lisanne.

  • tinasd

    Where analogies about people born with missing limbs fail-

    if a man were born with no legs and then sought medical intervention to give him mobility, he would not be treated so uncharitably and called “deceptive” and a “fake” for appearing in public with prosthetic legs, and would not be accused of being a “delusional” person “pretending” to be able bodied.

    But when anything even tangentially touching on sex/sexuality is involved, all of the sudden all bets are off and those admonished to leave judgment up to God just can’t seem to leave it alone.

    BTW, if some physical marker is the ONLY thing that gives a medical condition legitimacy and all other conditions are simply mental, you might want to consider that there is NOTHING physically observable that proves that religious belief is anything but delusion and self deception and a mental condition, yet it is still a constitutionally protected behavior.

    This kind of mindless physical essentialism in medical diagnoses combined with a lack of medical knowledge is what caused people like epileptics to be treated as being demonically possessed or victims of their own moral failures before that condition was fully understood, often as part of church doctrine.

    Those who fail to learn from the past are doomed to repeat it, and one day this witch hunt against transsexuals will be seen as just that, another witch hunt where people with legitimate medical conditions were subjected to the worst kind of discrimination and overt punishment (with the church’s blessings) because ignorant people thought they had all the answers.

  • femme

    “John Money, a controversial therapist, who pushed “sex change” surgery, used the tragic case of one twin whose penis was destroyed during a circumcision procedure to forward his theory that “gender identity” (the sex we feel like) could be manipulated. He claimed that this boy was raised successfully as a girl. It turned out that the boy never accepted being a girl and Money hid his failure.”

    I do want to thank you for bringing in John Money. His failed experiment does more to show that one can not control the brain then anything else that can/has been said on here so far. He conned parents into allowing him to change their son into a girl. Even though this child knew nothing of his history, he fought that assignment through out, until it was learned what was done to him.
    It was also learned that the various check ups which Money had preformed with him and his non reassigned brother were to have them engage in pretend sexual positions, one on the other.
    Money was badly discredited, finally, after all the years of lying to the scientific communities with his theory of a child being born as a blank slate, gender wise. One which could be constructed.

    “Persons with DSD have in the past been referred to as “hermaphrodites” and more recently as “intersexed.”

    Interesting that you have gone along with the push to “disorder” a community of people who are intersex. DSD just one more junk science term with no meaning aside to create a new area of study(job creation) for Dreger and her buddies.

    “The credentials of Bailey, Lawrence and Dreger are well established.”

    Lawrence

    Anne Lawrence’s erotic interest surrounding medically-constructed vaginas and genital modification allegedly drove Dr. Lawrence to undergo genital modification in 1996. Dr. Lawrence subsequently learned the hard way that society’s current threshold for acceptable “female” presentation is more nuanced than simply buying a vagina. Dr. Lawrence’s inability to be accepted socially by coworkers and patients culminated in a forced resignation in 1997, after a March 31 incident where Dr. Lawrence examined an unconscious Ethiopian patient’s vagina for signs of genital modification. Dr. Lawrence arrogantly refused to believe a peer who told Lawrence several times that the Ethiopian patient did not have genital modification. It appears that this arrogance and sexualized fascination clouded Lawrence’s judgment enough to cause the destruction of Dr. Lawrence’s 20-year career in anesthesiology.

    Bailey

    Bailey’s initial work on twins led to several papers on the heritability of homosexuality. Bailey has also authored papers with Aaron Greenberg while at Northwestern, arguing that screening for and aborting gay fetuses is “morally acceptable” and a matter of parental rights, as well as arguments for castrating criminals.

    For a thorough overview of Bailey’s ties to the eugenics movement, please read American Eugenics: Race, Queer Anatomy, and the Science of Nationalism by Nancy Ordover, pages 57-124.

    Dreger

    It was Alice Dreger who was one of the prime movers of the shift from “intersex” to DSD, “disorders of sex development”. She did this by consulting with doctors and determining what worked for them and consulted the intersex community after the change had been made. Quite unethical for an ethicist because there is practically no support for this replacement of the term “intersex” with “disorders of sex development” and the ensuing Consensus Statement, which approved this change of terminology which elaborated a set of protocols that are a major setback for intersex people with surgery being recommended between two and six months of age.

    Dreger then published a 60-page tome in defense of her colleague, J Michael Bailey and in that article she once again threw ethics out the window and simply gives Bailey another platform to justify having sex with research subjects: “there is nothing intrinsically wrong or forbidden about having sex with a research subject[….] Some of my colleagues have had sex with their research subjects, because it is not unusual to ask one’s romantic partner to be a subject” (Bailey, 2005).” Rather disturbing ethical standards that Dreger is disseminating in this tome in defense of her colleague.

    Yep well established, and there is much much more about these there.

    “Dr. Ray Blanchard’s theory of autogynephilia.”

    There are several problems with this “theory” (and keep in mind that is what it is not to mention discredited by other experts in the field) , first one being that it’s a one or the other “theory”. In other words a person is set out as either homosexual or if they are not, sexually excited ( autogynephilla) in ideas.

    Another issues is it does not carry over to men who are transexual, but is only used one women who are transexual.

    Yet another problem is that many, many women, who are not transexual by the way, would fall under the sexually excited (autogynephilla) “theory” is used upon them.

    Then what do we do with the young transitioner who , woman who is transexual or Transexual to female who also considers herself lesbian. This would then make her a cross between the two “theories” or visa versa the older person who is now straight. aka attracted to men.

    I expect others can point out more issues with this “theory ” of Blanchard’s but I believe the point that it does not hold up to scrutiny is made.

    “What about people with multiple personality disorder? ”

    What is a disorder and who decides? I think that is the real question. It wasn’t that long ago that PMS would have been listed as one. It wasn’t that long ago that
    Epilepsy was once considered a mental health issue. Once being homosexual was and now it’s not a disorder, once being intersex wasn’t and now it’s called a disorder.

    Odd how that is.

    More odd that when someone mentions a collation between being transexual and issues that affect people who are intersex, it’s called changing the subject or mudding the waters, not a quote but the means, but it’s completely fine to start talking about MPD instead of focusing on transsexuality.

    “Sex is about life-giving love. God has a thing for that too. Look at the Cross.”

    You know it’s rather funny that in the 80s the religious community were focusing on how all people that were gay did was focus on sex, not that it was true. And here I read a sentence that focuses on sex.

    What about all those people that are not able to have children, but marry and live very happy lives? Some adopt one of those many children who are homeless or discarded.
    And are those who then take in these children not mothers and fathers to those children? Are only those who have a direct role in giving life to the child a parent?

    To me a mother, a father are those who teach and take complete responsibility of the full care of a child. Loving them and keeping them safe.

    “God loves me just the way I am” – because that is exactly the wrong question. The question to ask is if you love yourself just the way you are.”

    What if you are a drunk, or a muderer or abuser? And what if you like it, does that make it alright then in the eyes of your god? Is that what he wants? Or does he/she want the person to live a life where they give happiness to others as well as themselves? Does the g_d want you to be happy and love yourself? To do all you can do to be that happy, contented and self relient person?

    “Medicine properly restores to correct natural function, where possible, what accident – including genetic mutation or developmental anomalies — has injured or deformed.”

    Exactly. Medicine allows one to correct things so that one can live life to it’s fullest. What you consider not right, isn’t for you to choose but rather for that person to choose.

    “And now the same is being attempted with the law. The law, which should protect the right to life is being more and more perverted to be employed in the service of death.”

    You’re stretching it once again. The law is talking about protecting a grouping of people from discrimination. From the abuses constantly dold out by the ignorant people in society, never mind the hateful ones.
    Protection so that iot is no longer ok to murder and attempt to murder someone with simple excuse of, well it’s their fault.

    “And on top of that we, who are citizens of this once free republic are being told that we have no credentials to speak on what laws must bind us because unless one is a specialist with an elite education one cannot judge this matter. I won’t even put in words the contempt I have for this viewpoint ”

    What’s real sad is somehow you actually feel you are being put upon. And for that I can’t find enough correct and non judgemental words to discribe my contempt. I will agree that you have no credentials, not if you don’t believe in the protection of a minority. I hasard to think of your thoughts in the early 60s when a similar fight for rights was happening.

    “This is someone who lived in the same town as me and I saw from time to time. This person once used the bathroom stall next to me in a department store. No, I didn’t like it.”

    I don’t get it. You were in a different stall with a closed door? Do you share a bathrrom at home with mixed family members?
    Is anyone, were these or this person forcing you to look between their legs?
    I don’t know about you but I don’t much think about who is in the stall next to me, I’m there to take care of what I need to do. Maybe be you out to spend more time worring about yourself not others.

    “I told her that “she” was born a “he”. How did I know this? ”

    Actually my question was why did you care? Or why did you feel it was your business to gossip?
    My other question would be, was she a good neighbour? Did she treat your garndmother with respect? I sense they had communication and some sort or neighbour relationship, and from what you said your grandmother wasn’t saying this person was rude or anything.
    Ever hear of Julia Child? There are many women out there who don’t , clearly, make you ideal of how a woman looks.

    “I know that human beings are created for more than sexual exploitation and know that a gay lifestyle is intrinsically disordered, but I have had no trouble being friends with gay individuals in the past. They were up front with me and as long as they didn’t expect me to condone their destructive private lifestyles, there was no issue.”

    My guess was what you mistook as friendship was more them just being typically polite and non judgemental in your religious lifestyle. As long as you didn’t bother them or try and enforce your views on them, push your heterosexual lifestyle on them, they were more then willing to say hi, how are you and other polite things aquantences say.
    Have to say though –I find most hetrosexuals are much more destructive then people who are gay. Consider the wife batterer, the serial killer, rapest, child abuser, and world leaders (who are in charge of their armies and send them of to war). You get the point right?

    “Perhaps we will.all meet again at some future time. It is even possible that our views might grow closer.”

    Sadly I doubt it. A bigot will always be a bigot, they just can’t help themselves. It’s part of their lifestyle being that way.

  • Mary Kochan

    At the prompting of profital I have looked up Renee Richards. In the Wikipedia article I found this astounding sentence: “[S]he married and fathered one son.”

    That is in itself enough to show that were dealing with insanity.

    It really does not matter what that court said in . We have often seen insanity in the courts. The courts have denied the humanity of a black man; they have denied the humanity of unborn human beings.

    That fathered son is an eternal being. He will always be the son of that father and when the son has offspring that father will be a grandfather to those children. He will be the male progenitor of every generation that follows in that line of descent until the end of time. A “she” cannot be a father. Which is the reality? That Renee Richards is a “she” or that Renee Richards is a father? The existence of the son gives us the brute fact that provides the answer. The son is not some figment of imagination or fantasy that lives in the head of Renee Richards. The son is the living flesh and blood proof that Renee Richards, in spite of the clothes and surgery and court case, is a male member of the human species.

  • http://groups.yahoo.com/group/tgtoledo marlene

    As a transsexual, I’m not surprised at the falsehoods, lies and violations of your god’s law (false witness) in trying to justify your bigotry. Reminds me of the racists using the Bible to legitimize Jim Crow.

    What’s been missing in this debate is ENDA — a *secular* law extrapolating from the guarantees established by the *secular* Constitution of the United States of America.

    I’ve lost and been denied employment because of my gender identity. I’ve been denied advancement because of my gender identity.

    I guess Catholics like the ones trying to justify their bigotry have forgotten when *Catholics* were the ones being beaten, harassed, and discriminated against because of their religious convictions. All you Papists had to do was join the “true” faith and conform to the majority!

    I’m not going to discuss semantics with the bigots, because no matter now much empirical evidence we put out, they aren’t going to listen… period. Their “experts” have been god-touched, and are thus immune from criticism and exposure — no matter how many times they bear false witness against us.

    So I’m going to talk about the law and how ENDA protects *straights*!

    Say I win the Mega Millions jackpot (unlike the lies told by the religious conservatives, not every TLBG person is highly educated, nor rich!) for a few million dollars.

    I decide I want to invest my new-found wealth by buying every real estate agency in my small college town. I follow it up by buying a few of the smaller manufacturing shops, followed up by nearly all of the town’s bars and restaurants.

    I summon you into my office with your entire family in tow. I proceed to look over your lease, and declare you to be in violation of the new policy, and summarily evict you.

    And because both you and your spouse also work for one of my businesses, you’re also fired on the spot, because you violate my new policy.

    Despondent, you head home, but want to stop for a bite to eat at a restaurant, or possibly drown your sorrows at one of the pubs, but you’re stopped from entering by one of the bouncers, who point to a new sign in the window: “We only serve TLBGs and our allies”.

    Guess what? Unless there’s a city ordinance or state law, there’s not a darn thing you can do about it, and you know why? Because I’m not discriminating against you because of your race, or family status, or your religion (I saw the the crucifixes around your neck earlier), or your sex, or any other condition *other* than the fact you are *heterosexual*!

    Furthermore, ENDA will protect discrimination against those straight men and women who due to whatever reason urges them to either dress or work in a profession which may be construed as traditionally male or female, ie a woman working in construction, thus requiring her to wear a helmet, steel-toed boots, heavy jeans, etc and wants to eat at a restaurant or use the ladies toilet, and is denied both because she looks “too masculine”.

    I in no way, shape, or form am in favor of *forcing* a religious institution such as a church or synagogue to hire someone from the TLBG community! I and many other TLBGs in this country and every mainstream TLBG advocacy group take this position, too!

    What we’re looking for is respect, and most importantly, *equal* treatment under the law, which is MANDATED by our *secular* Constitution!

  • Mary Kochan

    What employment, marlene?

  • jessica

    It seems like the discussion did wind down, and I found it too late.
    However, I’d still like to add my two cents. I think the author makes some interesting points, but fails to address the major issue: legal protection for transgender people.

    The author, and comments by editor Mary Kochan go to great pains to emphasize the following points:
    1. They don’t want to identify a transsexual person by their gender of presentation. They want to call a man a man, and see no way for a person to ever cross boundaries between men and women.
    2. A trans person trying to pass is being deceptive.
    3. They describe how SRS/GRS is “mutilating surgery”—in fact they use they use the words mutilate, mutilating, and mutilated, a total of 16 times in the article and comments. Obsessed much?

    As the above points are (re)iterated over and over, both writers seem to avoid discussing the actual point of the article: how hate crimes legislation and a transgender inclusive ENDA would actually affect them.

    Instead, the author builds up a glorious strawman in the form of maybe being forced to call a “man a woman.” People are free to be as rude or disrespectful as they want, of course, so I doubt you could ever be forced to call someone anything you didn’t want to. However, it’s generally considered polite to refer to a person using the names and words that they prefer, rather than what you think they really are. The author doesn’t want to have to tell her children to call that man a woman, and so she argues, trans people shouldn’t be accorded that level of respect. The problem here is that everyone is part of the same society, and we ought to be working to at least build mutual levels of respect, rather than trying to vilify and demonize the “other”. Respecting the dignity of every human being is something that our Savior was very clear about, and something I think most people can agree with, sectarian differences aside. I think a big problem is that the author is being very clear about how she feels but is also being very disrespectful at the same time. This puts the transgender community on the defensive, rather than feeling like there is a genuine level of communication that is possible.

    As for the strawman bathroom argument posed by the author, not all transsexuals transition, and most of them, at the point where they are not living full time as their gender of identity, would rarely use a restroom inappropriate for their gender presentation. One of the things the author seems to lack is a direct understanding of the stress and difficulty associated with transitioning. One doesn’t enter the women’s washroom when presenting as a male. And one doesn’t enter the men’s room when presenting as female. If you want to avoid trouble, you try to blend in as obviously as you can. I’m sure there are exceptions, where someone just wants to “get in your face over your preconceived notions of gender” or whatever, but that’s not the majority of people, and also not the majority of transsexuals. Most people want to go the restroom to pee, and as far as I can tell, and no evidence to the contrary, there have NEVER been any problems with transsexual people using the bathroom appropriate for their gender identity.

    There are in fact, thousands and thousands of transsexuals that pass very well and integrate seamlessly into society in their identified gender. The stories cited by the author in various research studies have at least one thing in common—a person is presenting at a gender clinic, which means they’re unhappy about something. What you don’t hear about in research papers are all the people who have had SRS and are perfectly happy with the results. Those people aren’t going back to the gender clinic for the rest of their lives. Rather, they’re going about normal, mundane, boring everyday business, and that isn’t particularly exceptional. The underrepresentation of such people makes it sound like all transsexuals are mentally unbalanced and don’t benefit from surgery when the opposite is really the case.

    Additionally, some of the examples in the literature regarding SRS regret usually have to do with the patient having unrealistic expectations regarding what the surgery would do for them. Most transsexuals suffer from depression, usually as a result of being an outcast member of a stigmatized group. After SRS, it is possible for the depression to ease, lighten, or go away completely if societal stigmatization is the only reason for the depression in the first place. If the transsexual doesn’t integrate seamlessly into society, though, the depression persists, and they think that surgery “failed” them. In other cases, co-occurring mental disorders can have negative impacts on how a person views the outcome of their surgery. This is one of the reasons that WPATH has standards of care, including the recommendation of a real life test. The goal is to identify people who might be good or poor candidates for SRS based on other factors in their life, including the ability to integrate into society.

    The goal of transition, though, and that of integrating into society is not about being deceptive, as the author tries to state. It is about being accepted as a member of the gender to which one identifies, not the gender to which one is assigned. Disclosure to sexual partners, etc. is always a good thing, but most transsexuals weigh several competing factors such as love and honesty with concern over their own safety. It is no secret that many transsexuals are murdered because they are transsexual. The stories of Gwen Araujo and Angie Zapata are both testament to that fact.

    To hammer home my point, the author states that anger over being deceived is understandable, but also says that violence can never be condoned. But what are we advocating for with our righteous anger if not violence? What is the logical outcome of the understandable anger? For both Angie Zapata and Gwen Araujo, the outcome was their deaths. I don’t believe the author is advocating violence, in fact she explicitly says that she’s not, but stating that anger is understandable is missing the point by a mile. I think the statement is somewhat disingenuous because most people will try to be honest, they just aren’t going to be oversharing with total strangers. Do we expect that people wear their transgender status on a sign around their necks, visible for all to see?

    Most people aren’t out to intentionally deceive. There are however, limits to what must be disclosed to strangers on a street and I do not think it appropriate for a person to have to identify as trans any more than I have to identify by my weight. Things ought to be disclosed to the people that need to know, but if I’m buying groceries or refilling the gas tank, my weight or my genitalia have exactly zero bearing on either of those things.

    By way of example, the author states that she has children, so I assume she’s married. I also assume that as a Catholic, she’ll stay married. So, with those assumptions, it stands to reason that she’ll only ever have casual contact with any transsexual, that they’ll only ever be friends at most, so what does a person’s genitalia have to do with that? There’s no possibility of intimacy there, so what hypothetical person does the author think they’re protecting? Why is it any of her business what’s under my skirt (or anyone else’s for that matter)?

    Lastly, the author and editor both engage in a serious amount of question begging—as I mention earlier, the two of them use the word mutilate, or some conjugate thereof, a total of 16 times in article and comments. The word has a definite negative value judgment, and neither writer tries to hide her contempt for SRS—“As said above it is a perversion of the purpose of medicine which is to serve the good of the human person. It does not do that because it destroys otherwise healthy functioning.” Because SRS alters otherwise healthy functioning of reproductive tissue, the author believes it is bad. Whether that otherwise healthy tissue is really doing any good for the person who has it probably isn’t a decision best left to an uninvolved, unfamiliar person. If I wanted surgical intervention such as SRS, I would prefer to make that choice with my doctor, not the author. The author makes the claim that SRS is contrary to God’s purpose, or the purpose of medicine, but doesn’t back this up outside of her own values system.

    The author says, “My conclusion, those men who claimed to have a womans soul (or brain) didn’t convince me. Their understanding of what it means to be a woman was superficial. A woman is entrusted with the human person, called to motherhood, both physical and spiritual. Those women who claimed to be men inside did not convince me either.”

    Why is the author the final arbiter of truth? Why should the author need to be convinced of anyone’s femininity or womanhood? Do we all need to prove our sex and gender to the author before being allowed to use the restroom? If not, why should a transsexual? The point is not to convince someone else, the point is for that person to live as authentically as they are able, however they can.
    Which brings me to the need for hate crimes legislation and ENDA. Transsexual people are denied housing, jobs, medical care and equal treatment under many parts of the law because they are transsexual. ENDA is one part of the battle to equalizing treatment for all people, and respecting the inherent dignity and worth of all people. All the strawman arguments aside, begging the question notwithstanding, should someone be denied a home or job because they are trans? Whether you think it’s wrong or not, that doesn’t mean anyone has the right or the ability to treat trans people with that level of disrespect. Trying to make the argument about the ethical issues of gender transition is disingenuous—it discounts the very real suffering and hurt that real people deal with every day.

    It is my belief that the church must deal with the issues, not set up strawmen with the illusion of protecting families or children. The refusal to engage on the issues is a refusal to offer the genuine hope and love of Christ to a world that desperately needs it. We must be willing to see people as fellow humans, and not impose our will on theirs. We must engage with people as they are, where they are, and identify them as they want, not as we want them to be. Until we do, we will become increasingly irrelevant.

  • profital

    Dear Mary, This decision was based on scientific facts. It is scientific fact. Renee Richards WAS male and now IS a woman.
    Renee Richards DID have a child as a male and can’t now as a woman. That is a fact. Renee’s role as a father ended. If Renee’s son was cloned, would Renee or Richard be the father again? Of course not. If Renee dies, and Renee’s son has a son, does Renee (or even as you would say Richard) become a grandfather postmortum? No. The son WAS the son of Richard Raskind. Sonship requires more than a sperm contribution. (By the way, a she CAN be a father. Again, there are intersexed humans who have been able to provide the sperm, have the gonad removed and yet also carry a child to term in their uterus). That is also a fact. There are also amongst the animal species those who have been sequentially fertile as a male and then fertile as a female. There will likely be the same sequential fertile sex roles in humans-perhaps even before human cloning. So what will you be able to say when someone produces gametes and becomes a father (by your definition), then later gets a change of gametic sex and has their fertile eggs fertilized and becomes a mother (by your definition)?
    Don’t think it will happen? Well, DNA from one of your or anyone’s cells can be changed in the lab to an opposite sex gamete. So it definitely CAN and likely will happen. So will cloning.
    But again this doesn’t matter, because God did make male and female even in the animal kingdom. But when a lower animal becomes a father and when they then become a mother, we don’t have any problem recognizing that they WERE a fertile male animal and are NOW a fertile female animal. WE also don’t refer to that current female animal as currently being the father-but that they WERE the father, since their male sex has died off and they are now a fertile female and can now bear offspring as a fertile female. It is only a fact to say that this animal WAS the father, and now is either a fertile female and a mother (or is infertile). So Renee WAS a fertile man, and was the father, had fathered (or rather provided the sperm), but now is an infertile woman. WE don’t mix up past and present tenses like you wish to do.
    I think you are also confusing things when you try to tie in the spirit and sperm and also when you refer to a person as being a son throughout eternity. You are also wrong when you say he will always be a son of
    that father. Look at Abraham. Many were descended from Abraham’s sperm. There were people who liked to claim they were sons of Abraham because they came from his sperm or were blood descendants. John 8:39 “They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham”. Jesus continues in John 8:44 “Ye are of your father the devil”.
    Also in Romans 9:7 “Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children”. Romans 9:8 tells us it is not the natural children-the children of the flesh who are regarded as the true children, but the children of the promise. Sonship (or rather childship) is not simply a physical affair, but it is a spiritual one. But it is not an eternal spiritual one in the way you suggest based upon a necessary permanent tie between the flesh and the spiritual connection. I am a fundamentalist. Only Abraham’s
    adopted children are the true eternal children according to Christian fundamentalist faith. In fact, someone who “father’s” a child in regards to providing the sperm was never the child’s father either if the child was elected toward adoption. The children’s adopting father is, despite no blood or sperm ties. Again, there is where the spiritual eternal connection occurs.
    Again, if I take the DNA from one of your cells, culture it in a lab with an enucleated sperm and progenerate your DNA (which will likely have only an X chromosome) as a male, does that mean you become a father? Does it mean you become a male?

  • Dale O’Leary

    Tolerance involves respecting the right of others to be wrong. Those who think they have changed or want to change their sex have no idea how truly tolerant others are, how people hold back and don’t say that they are really thinking. We don’t accept an imitation as the real thing. They see that in our eyes and it hurts, but what else can we do. We sincerely believe that they irrationally want the impossible. They may be driven by envy, desire, compulsion, obsession or delusions, we don’t know. We don’t hate, we pity, which from their point of view may be worse. We can try to understand what drove them to this, but no talk about phenotypes and DSD can convince us that it is healthy and normal to cut off a man’s private parts.
    They don’t want tolerance, they want us to believe and we can’t. Nothing in all this exchange has convinced me that the men who think they are women have the slightest idea of what a woman is. It isn’t just having a baby, or even having the potential to have a baby. A woman is not a collection of parts, but an integral whole, entrusted with the human person in a particular way.
    We who believe in the good news, we must pray for those with these problems. We must proclaim the freedom promised by the gossip by Philip to the Ethiopian eunuch. He believed and was baptized.

  • Mary Kochan

    profital wrote: “Again, if I take the DNA from one of your cells, culture it in a lab with an enucleated sperm and progenerate your DNA (which will likely have only an X chromosome) as a male, does that mean you become a father? Does it mean you become a male?”

    No. That means that an illicit act was committed. Children have the right to father and a mother and the right to be born from an act of love between them that binds the spouses together to care for that child. Every interference in that, from fornication and rape to adultery and incest to in vitro fertilization to divorce (except where necessary for protection) to fathers abandoning their children to go off and live as women to mothers being sent into battle is an act of selfish violence against the next generation.

    Adoption is a loving act (albeit imperfect) to heal violence that has already been done.

    Many adoptees would take umbrage at the idea that their biological father is not really their father, even with full belief in the fatherhood (in every other way) of their adopted father.

    I have tried to focus this discussion on children a couple of times, on the sacred obligations that we have toward the next generation and the next. Instead more egregious acts of violence toward future generations are pondered for the sake of demonstrating with greater hubris technological disregard for any natural limits.

    Abortion is now proven to cause significant increase in premature births in subsequent gestations by women who have them, but who cares if there are more children suffering the effects of prematurity as long as we have our sexual freedom.

    In vitro fertilization has also been demonstrated to cause health problems, but who cares because we will have what we want without regard for the consequences and that is before we even start to talk about the hundreds of thousands of frozen human beings no one can figure out what to do with.

    But hey, let’s keep figuring out more and more bizarre things we can do to the next generation. Because then we get to argue from what is to what ought and if we don’t yet have the is to give us the ought we want well by golly, we will create it. After all they exist for us, don’t they? I mean it really could not be that we exist for them, that we should seek to serve others. Anything but that.

  • profital

    Mary wrote-”Adoption is a loving act (albeit imperfect) to heal violence that has already been done.”

    Well here we have another BIG disagreement. I think that adoption is higher.
    It is even purer. It is a picture of Salvation. The elect AND the non-elect can be pictured as a product of a marital union, as “flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God”. BUT only in the predestination of adoption do we have a picture ONLY of the elect, salvation and its perfect love.

    Galations 4:27
    ///Rejoice, you childless woman who cannot give birth to any children! Break forth into song and shout, you who feel no pains of childbirth! For the children of the deserted woman are more numerous than the children of the woman who has a husband.///

    Mary wrote-

    “Many adoptees would take umbrage at the idea that their biological father is not really their father, even with full belief in the fatherhood (in every other way) of their adopted father.”

    I wouldn’t even use the word father in this context. An adoption on paper doesn’t mean it was sanctioned in spirit. Again, there were those who were trying to claim that Abraham was their father because of the flesh and blood (biological) ties. Again John 8:44 “Ye are of the father the devil”.
    Again I see adoption as PURE spirit, devoid of the flesh and the blood, the carnality (even though such carnality is santioned only in marriage), the corrupted human nature. It is of PURE spirit- another level.
    This doesn’t mean the result is always that way. But that is the intention
    of the predestination of adoption.

  • http://groups.yahoo.com/group/tgtoledo marlene

    Mary asked what kind of employment I was in.

    Mary, I’ve been mainly in retail, hospitality (housekeeping and laundry). The largest discrimination I encountered was when I was in commercial radio.

    Transfolk have a very high unemployment rate: up to *75%!* Unless you’re covered by a union or a contract, many transfolk who begin transition face summary firing, even though your evaluations are stellar up to when you announce your transition, then the evaluations begin to degrade.

    Unfortunately, most of the transfolk who you see in the media on daytime TV have had the advantage of hiding in the closet for 20+ years until they retire or for those in academia, reach tenure.

    A majority of us are forced to work in lower-paying blue collar/service sector jobs, where unionization is scant, and protections are close to non-existant.

    Many of us either have to work two or three part-time jobs, or work under the table, or even as sex workers.

    Every year on November 20th, the trans community gathers together to hold what’s called the Transgender Day of Remembrance — to commemorate the lives of our sisters and brothers who’ve been murdered because of hate and bigotry. The website is http://www.gender.org/remember/day/ . In 2008, *THIRTY* names were added to the list! We have a murder rate *TEN TIMES* higher than any other minority!

    One person in particular I remember was named Gisberta Salce Júnior. She was a Brazilian who emigrated to Portugal, became homeless and was forced to become a sex worker in order to survive, and she became HIV-positive.

    Over a series of days in 2006, a group of 14 boys from a 10-16 years old, most of whom came from a child protection institute run by the Catholic Church terrorized and brutally raped the poor woman with sticks, eventually killing her by throwing her in a fetid 10-foot deep pit.

    Where was the Catholic sense of morality, which allowed a woman living on the streets to be murdered in such a brutal way? Why weren’t these boys instilled with the morality of the Biblical edict of treating others like you want to be treated?

    The poor excuses I’ve read here trying to justify prejudice,bigotry and discrimination are simply pathetic. Heaven help you if your boy comes up to you and asks why they weren’t born a girl!

  • Mary Kochan

    Hmmm, profital, I was earlier going to mention the Gnosticism thread I noticed but you have made it explicit.

    Is adoption higher, purer than generation.

    The elect are adopted, yes.

    But the Son is generated by the Father.

    Christ told the Magdalene, “I ascend to my Father and your Father and to my God and your God.” Why the odd construction? Why not “our” God and Father. Because God was her Father by grace, but his by nature. God was her God by nature, but his God by grace — only the grace of the incarnation put the Son in position to call the Father God, for he was not a created being, yet he became a man and a body was created for him. By assuming to himself flesh, he took the position of a slave — creaturely — and could call his Father “God.”

    While adoption is an image of salvation, the one flesh union of the man and women that begets a child is the image of the very life of the Triune God, wherein the love between the Father and Son is a Third Person — the Holy Spirit. So the love between and man and woman is so real that you can give it the name of a person nine months later.

    To get back to my point: A human father is the father of a human being, who is an eternal being. Therefore his fatherhood is eternal. He can never not be a father for the being he has fathered is eternal. Remember, we believe in the resurrection of the BODY. We don’t believe in “pure spirit” as a mode of human existence — at least Catholics and other Christians don’t. That resurrected body will eternally depend for its existence upon the human father who originally fathered that human person whether he is the father who raised the child or not.

    The act of fathering the child is the act of a human person, not of some disconnected “body” — but of the person in and through and by his body. Sometimes women expecting or in labor do have to remind their husbands that they were present for the beginning of the whole thing — its not like the body just kind of goes off and does its own thing while the person is somewhere else. That person IS a body/soul. The body is not something that can be discarded or replaced like taking off one set of clothes and putting on another.

    As for Galatians — the abandoned woman was Sarah — please read the context. Sarah pictured (typified) the Jerusalem above. The two sons (of Hagar and Sarah) pictured respectively, those who were in the old covenant and those in the new covenant. However, both the one born according to the flesh and the one born according to the promise were both born from sexual union. So this is not talking about the superiority of adoption over begetting a child. It is talking about the superiority of one covenant over the other.

    None of this is to say that adoption is not a wonderful provision, usually an act of unselfish love, and a tremendous blessing. However, ideally, no child should ever need adoption — the need for it is always tragic. Just as our need for spiritual adoption was the result of the tragedy of sin — which God by grace turns into a comedy — the Divine Comedy.

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  • profital

    Dear Mary, You are in error here. The adopted are generated as well. In fact, you have a misunderstood (Catholic) view of traducianism. God always generates
    any baby. It just so happens that in adoption, the spirit of the child is generated from the paretns who do the adopting. This is unique in adoption. You (and many other Catholics) wrongly assume that adoption is not a generative act and that it is something nice which occurs later. If we examine the greek VERY carefully, hueothesia means the placing or a ceremony of someone who ALREADY has been a child. I might add that it was in many regards lowly for Jesus to take on
    a sinful fallen human nature. It was only because man in his sinful nature was corrupted and subject to decay that God needed to find a human substitute.
    Jesus (although being a second Adam in many ways) did not take on the flesh
    presentation of the first Adam, but of that of decaying humanity. His humanity had to be post-fall human (not pre-fall human) in order to be found guilty
    and punished (for the elect’s sin). Abraham and his children are a picture of
    the relation between God and his chilren. But again, it has nothing to do with
    flesh and blood. It is only those who are of the spirit which are the true children. The resurrection of the body clearly indicates that the new body will NOT be patterned after the earthly, but patterned after the heavenly.

    I ought to say that the MODERN Catholic church has also grossly misrepresented Scripture in their views of certain passages in regards to what they call classical adoptionism.
    Although classical adoptionism was thought of as a heresy, non Catholic fundamentalism still finds errors in the MODERN catholic interpretation in this regard. yet traditional Catholicism and true fundamentalist theology do not disagree.

    See here-

    “I think it should also be mentioned that the original statement by God at Jesus’ baptism was a direct quote of Psalms. The baptismal scriptures were later changed to remove the adoptionist teachings of the Bible. We know this for two reasons. First, some scriptures retain the original wording. You can find them in footnotes in many Bibles.
    Second, Paul references the original, uncorrupted Scripture in Hebrews 1:5. In attempting to show why Jesus is greater than the angels, he writes: “For to which of the angels did he ever say ‘you are my Son today I have begotten you’” (Heb 1:5). Thus, Paul’s readers knew that God said to Jesus, “you are my Son, today I have begotten you” at his baptism, and it was later changed by the Church.”

    http://books.google.com/books?id=UivDgM0WywoC&pg=PA140&lpg=PA140&ots=uR58c_TRa7&dq=adoptionism+is+correct&ie=ISO-8859-1&output=html

    http://books.google.com/books?id=zjvtoyQBcuoC&pg=PA270&lpg=PA270&ots=U2ybbpfFSZ&dq=adoptionism+is+true&ie=ISO-8859-1&output=html

  • Mary Kochan

    profital, you are confusing the ordinary use of the word generation, in the sense of passing life along to offspring that I was using.

    I was not talking about the doctrine of Generationism that says that soul of the infant is generated in some way from the souls of the parents. I do believe that the soul is a direct creation of God which is Catholic doctrine, btw.

    Any doctrine that makes the soul a product of human agency instead of direct creation by God is theologically in error. If I understand you correctly, you are saying that the soul originates in some way from the parents’ organism and that in the case of adoptees, it is the adoptive parents who are the originators of the child’s soul. Either view is heretical.

    Here is a thumbnail explanation for our readers:

    http://www.google.com/gwt/n?u=http%3A%2F%2Fdisseminary.org%2Fhoopoe%2Fdogma%2F2005%2F08%2Fch_xiv_q_84_tra_1.html

  • profital

    Dear Mary, I understand the way you were using generation and disagree. What I am saying here is that the soul of course is created by God, but from and patterned after that of those who will do the adopting. Again, adoption is simply placing in the position of someone who already is a child.
    Also I wuld like to add as another point (and the Catholic church I know gives weight to tradition as well as Scripture, but I
    don’t know if the Catholic Church has changed their view on this or if it will)
    Roman tradition has always stated that a child born of flesh and blood could always be disinherited by the father,
    but a father of an adopted son could NEVER disinherit an adopted son.

  • Mary Kochan

    profital wrote: “What I am saying here is that the soul of course is created by God, but from and patterned after that of those who will do the adopting.”

    “[F]rom” in what way?

    “[P]atterned after” in what way?

    And your proof for this is…?

    And just not to lose track of the thread of logic here, you are bringing this point up to argue that no violence is really done to children if their father decides to abandon them in order to pursue “becoming a woman” contra my point that such a transformation is impossible given that the natural relationship of human fathers to their eternal offspring is an eternal relationship in as much as grace builds upon but does not destroy nature.

  • profital

    OK I will not discuss adoption per se. In regards to sex, I see it as temporal
    in the physical sense. The spiritual bodies we receive will not be patterned after the earthly elements (the earthly elements will all melt with fervent heat) but after the heavenly elements, ASSUMING we are saved. There will not be a need for sex, since sex is for marriage.
    We will be like the angels-with CELESTIAL bodies. To say that there is an eternal relationship doesn’t say anything in regards top if a parent is not in heaven and the child is and vice versa. Perhaps there will be gender (I doubt it), but there will not be chromosomes gonada, hormones and so on. I don’t beleive that I said that there is no harm to a child if a parent changes sex.
    I am just saying that a person was the father physically and we need to refer to past tenses after they change sex.
    I do not believe that essentialism (which is what you are describing) is factual or scientific in this case.

  • Mary Kochan

    Well, profital, since our entire point is that the concept of “changing sex” is one that is incoherent, the temporality of sexual relations is not the issue. Sexual relations find their fulfillment in the ultimate union of the soul with God — that is why there is no marriage in heaven, not because our bodies lose their sexual identity. Jesus is eternally a male person.

    A father is a father of a person, not merely of a body. Just as a mother is the mother of a person. Which is exactly why we can properly call Mary the Mother of God, btw, because her Son is one person with two natures, divine and human. Since all human persons, once existing, will exist eternally (regardless of where they spend that eternity), once a man fathers a human person, he is always the father of that human person.

    I’m not surprised that you are accusing the Church of being wrong on doctrine since you also think it is wrong on morality. The two things usually go hand-in-hand. (I’m not bashing you for it; just noting it.)

  • Mary Kochan

    marlene: thank you for answering my question. I have been thinking about it since I saw your post and I did look at the website you linked to.

    I’ll be responding at greater length soon.

    Take care, all.

  • profital

    Mary wrote-
    “A father is a father of a person, not merely of a body”

    This statement of yours needs correction. it requires us to understand
    Hebrews 12:9 which states-
    “Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?”

    Mary wrote-
    “Sexual relations find their fulfillment in the ultimate union of the soul with God — that is why there is no marriage in heaven, not because our bodies lose their sexual identity.”

    No, this is Catholic doctrine and is flawed. Our spirits are sexless.

    Mary wrote-
    “Jesus is eternally a male person.”

    Again, at best masculine. Jesus BECAME a man (a male person) WHEN HE
    (masculine gender perhaps) took on a human nature. Even God the Father needs
    to correctly be interpreted in regards to Genesis 1:27. When God made male and female in His image, we need to understand the use of the pronoun He. He made them male and female in His image.

    Mary stated-
    “Mary the mother of God”

    No. Mary was the mother of Jesus. You are stating a catholic beleif which is not correct and is the result of faulty exegesis.

    Mary stated-
    “once a man fathers a human person, he is always the father of that human person”

    No. That is wrong. I think we covered that already.

  • lanceworth

    Dale,

    No, actually, the doctors treating the male twin whose genitals were mutilated, then sculpted into a female shape, did not believe in gender. They believed that ‘Brenda’ would be fine.

    They were wrong. He was a man, with a man’s mind and heart… and wound up killing himself over the agony of being misshapen in such a fundamental way. Just like a lot of those with gender and sex conflicts–I know you can’t understand, I know you feel like you’re a better Christian for refusing to–though I don’t understand why. Do you believe that Jesus rejects people, or tells them they’re not who they are? Do you think Jesus would smile on unequal rights? Keep in mind the stage of the world when he was born–don’t you think he might know what it is to be oppressed by political and religious leaders?

    And Mary? I’ll be sure to tell my female friends to take their shoes off and get back in that kitchen. Whether they would be suited to motherhood and whether their bodies can even get pregnant… or else they face accusations from you about ‘not being women.’ I guess I better tell my mom, who had a hysterectomy, she’s not a woman anymore, either.

  • http://groups.yahoo.com/group/tgtoledo marlene

    I’m going to add and clarify Lance’s remarks to Dale.

    This is what’s known as the David Reimer case.

    David was born with a twin brother back in the 1960s. A doctor using a cauterizer to circumcise the boys had an accident with David and partially burned it off.

    The family, being poorly educated and on the lower end of the economic scale, were worried about David when they saw a documentary on a famous doctor who was one of the early pioneers regarding gender, Dr. John Money.

    As Dale has said, Dr. Money’s theory was that gender could be manipulated, so when he saw this perfect opportunity to prove his theory, he must have orgasmed in his pants.

    To make an extremely long story short, Money tried to force David into living as a girl. He failed utterly. Why? Because David wasn’t born a girl between the ears!

    Sex is what you have between the legs. *Gender* is what you are between the ears — the two are separate and distinct!

    It’s also been exposed that Dr. Money forced David and his brother to have sex play together when they were younger in another vain attempt to impose femininity in David.

    This could be one of the reasons why first his brother, then David to complete suicide. Both suffered from severe depression for years. All at the hands of a quack who though he could play god with a child’s psyche!

    This case is concrete proof that gender identity exists, and is deeply seated and cannot be changed, just like sexual orientation is fixed and cannot be changed. So-called ex-gay “therapy” is an utter failure.

    There is an excellent book on the Reimer case: “A Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as a Girl” by John Colapinto. There’s also a companion article in the December 11, 1997 issue of Rolling Stone, located here: http://infocirc.org/rollston.htm

  • xrk9854

    As usual this article continues the Catholic Churches crusade against transgender/transsexual people. This article is full of prejudice, misrepresentations and outright LIES. People are born transsexual. It is a naturally occurring birth condition. To argue differently, after all the science that has been done over the last century, is pure folly. And the “experts” they consulted for this article are either not scientists or are discredited pseudo (junk) scientists. Why don’t you try contacting a REAL expert like Dr Milton Diamond of the University of Hawaii? Probably because you know what you’re printing isn’t truthful. How ironic that the Church which started out as the universal Church has become so narrow minded and exclusive in it’s nature. Either the Church will reform it’s ways or it’s slow decline into irrelevance will continue. Being Catholic myself this saddens me.

  • Mary Kochan

    I don’t think profital, that we could do justice to a discussion of Mariology here. We need to save that for another place or time. Obviously I hold to everything the Church teaches on this subject.

    As for the larger topic here, one thing that strikes me is the very different picture that is presented. On the one hand, these surgeries are so successful that no one would ever guess, hence the websites that feature “success stories” with photo after photo of lovely-looking models, each a high-powered professional in everything from acting to systems analysis to professors to running businesses. On the other hand, transgendered people are routinely being harassed, fired, passed over, bullied, refused service, and even murdered. The stories of the tortures that some of these poor people have endured are truly sad and outrageous. At the same time, some of the websites seem almost to be “recruiting” people with gender identity disorder to take the step of “transitioning” — seems like the murder statistics should be published there also.

    I do want to respond to marlene who questioned why boys being cared for at a Catholic home would be so cruel and violent. My guess is that they were probably being cared for there because they were troubled or deprived in some way. Who knows how long any of them had been there, if they were even Catholic (the Church cares for all without distinction), or what disruption or violence already was part of their histories. I’m sure you know that it wasn’t the teaching of the Church that they were following when they engaged in that horrific criminal assault.

    I’d like to back up to lisanne’s observation that acceptance cannot be legislated. This is true; as Dale O’Leary put it, “they would see in our eyes that we don’t believe.” This brings me to a point that I want to be very cautious about making, but that I think has to be made if this is going to be an honest exchange. It is not mere disbelief that transgendered, cross dressing and gay people see in the eyes of others. And it is not just the pity that Dale mentioned. It is something more and I think that you all probably know it. Even though people try very hard — as Dale put it, “you have no idea how truly tolerant others are, how people hold back and don’t say what they are really thinking” — what they see in the eyes of others is revulsion. It hurts my heart that this is the case, because I know how very hurtful it must be to these people. And I hope that any human being who crosses my path would see loving acceptance in my eyes. But for most people, this is simply revolting. We are talking about healthy, virile, men intentionally having their sex organs removed. That prompts a shuddering revulsion –- a gut reaction — in just about every normal human being of either sex. And I would argue that it is naturally and rightly so.

    The reason this is naturally and rightly so is for a very similar reason — only deeper — that the thought of being dismembered causes revulsion and fear in human beings. Many adult people can still recall the first time that they, in childhood, encountered a person with an amputated limb and the sense of shock and horror they felt. Even as an adult we can be shocked by this. My Marine daughter was in an exercise for dealing with a terrorist attack. A number of actors were brought in to play the part of the wounded. One of the “wounded” was a man whose leg below the knee had been “blown off.” In the haze of the dust, my daughter thought she was dealing with an actor who had his leg folded under him to give the appearance of missing the bottom part of his leg. As she continued the exercise and emergency treatment of this “wounded person”, she suddenly realized that that he was an actual amputee… and shuddered. Did her revulsion mean she “disrespected” him? NO! In fact, she immediately surmised that he was an injured vet — summoning in her the greatest respect — but that did not keep her from experiencing revulsion. People have told of vomiting the very first time they saw their own stumps, or mastectomies. That is revulsion. And it is not under conscious control. But I would argue that it a right and healthy reaction.

    Bodily integrity is essential to the health of an organism. Our discomfiture with dismemberment comes from deep inside, part of the “programming” if you will, for keeping us alive. Now it is true that as we get older, get more experiences in the world, meet more people, we learn to relate to a person who has lost a limb in a natural way — we learn to “look past” the disability and focus on the person. It is important to note that people who are missing limbs are almost never missing them as a deliberate choice. However, to make that choice to remove a limb or even express the desire to do so meets such an instinctual response of recoil in healthy human persons that we know that we know that we know it is insane. (We also recognize the desperation of the occasional rural poor person who has an “accidental amputation” of a foot with an ax for insurance money.) That is why we don’t have a politically correct category called “amputaphobia” to create a mental illness out of our natural healthy desire to keep intact the bodily integrity of our organism.

    People who intentionally violate the integrity of their body demonstrate a mental disorder. A healthy society has to balance their freedom to do so with protection of the society. But beyond that people have to have some kind of sane conception of what the consequences are of what they do themselves. In my extended family there is man who had a wife and two children. He decided a number of years ago that his hobby would be to get himself pierced and tattooed all over, and do other body modifications like stretching out his earlobes. He spent the money his family needed to live on to do these things. He so deformed his appearance that now he is barely able to make a living to pay child support to his wife who finally left him after years of non-support. Does he have the right to do these things to himself? Apparently so. Does an employer have the right to decide that his appearance is more a detraction to the company’s image than some other employee? You bet. If we go from the arena of legal rights to moral rights, though, we have to ask a different question about this man’s responsibility to his children. He can carry on all day long about his “rights” and people’s “prejudices” against his revolting appearance, but at the end of the day, he knew he would be endangering his ability to provide for his kids by doing this and he didn’t care. He made a selfish decision.

    “Transfolk” have mutilated themselves in ways that most sane people find revolting, even those who would defend their legal “right” to do so. The Church does not teach that every single moral wrong must be brought under the control of the law and as a person who believes we are better off as citizens with freedom maximized, I would not seek to penalize these operations, those who perform them, or those who obtain them. That is not to say that anyone has a moral right to do this wrong.

    So what is the situation we have? We have people who have used (in our definition, abused) their freedom and having carried out these operations are attempting with varying degrees of success to live as members of the opposite sex from the one they were born as. They deserve the same protection of the law that we all should have. And they have it. An assault upon one of them is as much a crime as an assault upon anyone else. Robbery of them is as much a crime as robbery of anyone else.

    Robbery gives us an analogy though. The guy who goes into a bar and flashes around a wad of bills, has a few drinks and then exits into a dark alley is a victim of a crime if he is robbed. But we also say that he was acting stupidly, without prudence, without taking sensible precautions. The same is true of the “transfolk” I read about who suffered assault and even murder at the hands of people from whom they hid their condition until after a sexual encounter. The revulsion that a normal male feels for having a sexual encounter with another male is healthy and good. It comes from an orientation of the human species toward procreation as opposed to extermination. It supports the male-female-child family unit as the building block of society. While “transfolk” should be and are protected by law from such criminal assault, this kind of deception understandably provokes rage and can be avoided — just as the guy with the wad of bills can be circumspect and avoid being a needless victim. I’m sure that in some cases the “trans” person is very blameworthy in using the disguise offered by the surgery as a way to trick others and put them in that position. If “transfolk” are not able to recognize the wrongness of that, then it is just more evidence that to put it in common parlance, their dipstick is not touching their oil.

    The Church teaches that as with homosexuals, there should not be unjust discrimination. All discrimination however, is not unjust. To use the example spoken about in the forgoing discussion of the male tennis player who had “sex change” surgery only to become a champion playing in the women’s competitions, it would certainly not have been wrong for him to be disqualified. The stupid court decision notwithstanding, every woman who played opposite him and lost was cheated, playing someone with an advantage in strength that women players did not possess. It would have been just discrimination to refuse to allow him to play the woman’s circuit.

    It would have been unjust discrimination not to allow him to work as a tennis pro, teacher, or coach to adults. It would have been just not to hire him to be a children’s coach IF by doing so the children were going to be exposed against the wishes of their parents to his ideas regarding “sex changes” or to an ambiguous sexual figure. For this same reason, “transgendered” persons can justly be discriminated against in number of areas where their contact with children might raise issues that parents would rather not expose their children to at a tender age. On the other hand, with the exception of situations where an employer has to count on the employee to “represent” the image of the company in some visual way — such as sales, PR, etc. there probably is a certain amount of unjust discrimination in employment. “Transfolk” would be better served by making a very narrowly focused legal effort that does not link them with transvestites, gays, etc. This brings us to another issue of deceit.

    The reply of jessica elucidates the point: “As for the strawman bathroom argument posed by the author, not all transsexuals transition, and most of them, at the point where they are not living full time as their gender of identity, would rarely use a restroom inappropriate for their gender presentation.” In other words, some of them at some point may use a restroom inappropriate for their gender identity. We have to add here that there are some who have no intention of transitioning as well as some transvestites who have made it a personal mission to break down society’s “boundaries” and they freely admit, “mess with people’s heads” (or as jessica put it: “get in your face over your preconceived notions of gender”), do make it a point to use a restroom that is inappropriate for their gender presentation — and what bathroom would be “appropriate” for fully-bearded, well-muscled man in a dress and high heels, pray tell. This all shows tone deafness to the protection society owes to women and children. This tone deafness is exactly what we expect and get from “transwomen.” Despite their claim of being women “in their minds” they possess no native sense of feminine vulnerability or modesty, nor do they have a sense of solidarity with it. Instead to pursue their own agenda they would happily rob real woman of societal protections. The bathroom issue, just happens to epitomize this. Go into almost any public place and notice how the women’s rooms are almost always placed beyond the men’s when both share a hallway. Why is this? It is because the area beyond the men’s room is “off limits” to men. The staff of the business, such as a restaurant, will know immediately if they see a man venture past the men’s room, that he is where he has no business being and challenge him. This is for the protection of women. Oh, but here we go again with our “preconceived notions of gender” that serve the real legitimate interests of real women that “transwomen” would happily trash.

    Like the “radical gay rights” agenda, with which it is now hand in glove, the original appeal is to “just leave us alone.” But being left alone — tolerated — is never enough; a kind of acceptance that a healthy society cannot give is always the goal. So the society must be made unhealthy. And when the adults prove less than malleable to the agenda, the target becomes the children. This is how it always goes. What is demanded ultimately is “reeducation” to a different value system and the parents be damned. We’ve been down this road before. As much as we care for their pain — and we do; as much as the Church cares for their souls — and she does; this agenda has to be opposed. God bless and keep safe all who commented.

  • Mary Kochan

    Subsequent to my closing comments on August 1st, I received an email from profital making a further response and in the interest of fairness am pasting it here with my own comments below. (Note: profital has also issued an invitation to anyone wishing to continue this discussion to join it at http://www.gendercare.com.)
    ________________________________________
    From profital:

    Here is my response to Mary Kochan’s August 1′st comments-

    Dear Mary, You are wrong about Mariology. I rather go with Scripture instead of relying on the flawed doctrines of so-called tradition of a church which by the way continues to change its doctrines. But Mariology will not be discussed in this response.

    In regards to your continued posts on sexual and gender identity, you are greatly mistaken. Renee Richards is NOT a him or a man. Renee is a woman and had no unfair advantage competing against other women who were competing in the Women’s Tennis Association and United States Tennis Association sanctioned matches. In fact, the International Olympic Committee’s scientific and medical advisories have found the same in regards to transsexuals competing as the women that they are. They realize that DNA is not what decides a so-called true sex. But more importantly, they have correctly found that a post-op transsexual woman is indeed a woman and therefore permitted to compete in the world International Olympics.

    http://www.rediff.com/sports/2004/may/18oly.htm

    Yes they are women. They are not men. Thus the IOC has changed their policy to reflect on the truth of the matter and not on unfounded fears and misconcetions such as yours as well as those who engage in hostility toward pos-op transsexual women with violence and who incorrectly believe that they are men. In fact, there ARE plenty of men who do realize that they are indeed married to or dating women and not men when they are with a transsexual woman after her SRS. Your closure of your posts to your forum does not take away from the fact that you have misrepresented the truth.

    In regards to mutilation, SRS certainly is no more mutilating than is circumcision or gonadectomy (the latter interfering with fertility).

    Dr. Thomas Szasz who wrote The Myth of mental Illness commented also about how transsexualism was like amputation of an arm. Yet Dr. Benjamin justly corrected him. The amputation of an arm makes someone less functional.

    The amputation of gonads or penile tissue would only make someone less functional if vaginoplasty was not performed. But as Benjamin properly corrected Szasz, when vaginoplasty isperformed, it actually makes the person MORE functional. Since in legitimate transsexuals, this is the only treatment which is beneficial, it is understandable that Benjamin was troubled that a physician (Szasz) would take such a position and that Szasz is not worthy of a degree since he mentioned no way of relieving the legitimate transsexual’s suffering. (For Benjamin vs. Szasz, see dialgoue published in Transition which is the title of the doctoral dissertation project of Garrett Oppenheim of Confide, Inc. at Columbia Pacific University).

    In regards to pscyho-emotional issues of disgust and revulsion at being amputated, you should know that unlike non-transsexuals, transsexuals do not have the phantom limb phenomenon, which suggests that the brain and nervous system indeed is not wired in accord with the genitals which are present before the SRS.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17420102?ordinalpos=5&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    Regards,
    M. Italiano, MB BS (AM)
    ________________________________________

    My response:

    The original abstract in the original publication of the study about phantom penises to which profital is referring (which currently can be found here: http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/imp/jcs/2008/00000015/00000001/art00001?crawler=true ) mentions that the incidence of phantom penis in “male to female transsexuals” is reduced from 60% to 30% when compared to men who suffered surgical penial amputation for cancer. It is therefore not non-existent and the fact that it must be self-reported by people who have a great deal of interest in being perceived as “real women” cannot be overlooked as a factor that can skew the results.

    That point having been made, it is to some extent beside the point. We understand that there is a disorder. We understand that there is a very strong desire on the part of these people to live as the other sex. We understand that this disorder resides in their head. The question remains as to whether this action of bodily mutilation is moral or not, or whether once it has been accomplished, the rest of us must be in some way legally obligated to pretend that a “sex change” has really occurred. And that is not a question that can be answered by referring to what is going on in the heads of the people who are doing this.

    As for the comparison with amputation and the issue of functionality, profital says: “[W]hen vaginoplasty is performed, it actually makes the person MORE functional.” Once again, that could only be the case if the purpose of the sexual organs was not procreation, since what you have here is the removal of functional organs and the construction of organs that can be said to function in only the most restricted and limited sense. They certainly do not function at all in the way they do in normal intact people. A vagina is not a mere pouch in the body of woman for the purpose of allowing penetration of the male organ, it is the birth canal. To say that someone whose generative power has been surgically removed in order to fabricate a simulacrum of one part of the organs of the other sex has become more functional demonstrates a remove from reality that I trust is evident to most readers.

  • Penny

    Fortunately for many of us Dale O’Leary is the one who’s deceived. His ill-informed abjectifying rant deserves no serious consideration as it has no philosophical, theological, existential, or phenomenological basis whatsoever but rather only betrays an acute personal loathing. O’Leary makes the hugely popular error of conceiving of sex as a natural kind, of seeing male and female as distinct natural kinds. Sex is not written on “every cell of our body” by way of our DNA. Only a very small percentage of of our DNA concerns sex development at all. It should be noted that O’Leary’s fundamentalist natural law position is held by a great many atheists on the left.

  • Commonsense person

    Fortunately for many of us Dale O’Leary is the one who’s deceived.
    no, he is not.
    His ill-informed, no.
    objectifying rant deserves no serious consideration as it has no philosophical, theological, existential, or phenomenological basis whatsoever but rather only betrays an acute personal loathing. … what about yourself…hypocrite…
    wrong… there is plenty of merit…
    O’Leary makes the hugely popular error?
    of conceiving of sex as a natural kind, of seeing male and female as distinct natural kinds, it is only common sense.. you are delusional
    no, it is you who are in error… postmodernist deconstructionism..subvert common sense.. moral holiday.
    . Sex is not written on “every cell of our body” by way of our DNA.
    I am afraid that it is… facts are facts…
    Only a very small percentage of our DNA concerns sex development at all.
    Irrelevant.
    It should be noted that O’Leary’s fundamentalist?
    natural law position is held by a great many atheists on the left.

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