If Alice were an 18 year old American college freshman, she would be protected by Title IX from any hint of sexual harassment or molestation. Even if she consented to climb into bed with a guy she had already had sex with many times, voluntarily peeled off all her clothes and had a black belt in karate, if she changed her mind at any time in her romantic encounter, the government would defend her as if she were a hothouse flower outdoors in a hurricane. If she spent her evening getting drunk with her partner, he alone would be held responsible for any advances while she would remain a helpless victim with no agency. Under the same rubric of Title IX, if Alice were a younger girl in elementary or high school, she would be expected to change in a locker room or shower in a communal facility with bi-gender members of the opposite sex. The government now demands that young Alice be cool with seeing boys on hormone therapy with both breasts and penises. How odd that so much more is expected of Alice as a child than when she is actually old enough to be responsible for her own behavior as well as enlist in the army and be killed for her country.
The media coverage of transgender bathrooms usually leaves out the locker room and focuses instead on debunking the likelihood of bathroom rape. That contingency is not the most salient argument for segregating sexes according to their biology. The interjection of civil rights and equality into this LGBT campaign is a canard since physically disabled children have never been defended by the government against the so-called “stigma” of using separate wheelchair-accessible bathrooms. Why should unisex bathrooms be considered more discriminatory than that? Considering the likelihood that there are more disabled youngsters in the population than the tiny percentage of transgender children, why wouldn’t the government be more interested in protecting their civil rights first?
The LGBT politicization of this issue is unfortunate for all children regardless of their gender identity. It doesn’t benefit adolescents to pump them full of hormones prematurely or to glamorize transgender-ism by showering the sixty-something, multi-millionaire, publicity hungry Caitlin Jenner with accolades and awards for ‘bravery.” Presidential equivalency of bravery with selling your story on reality t.v. in a money-making deal is a slap in the face to women whose bravery is precariously tested daily in military and civilian lines of duty. Forcing the mainstreaming of conditions that are not fully understood by the psychiatric or medical professions is like selling medications before they have been approved by the FDA. The majority of teens who contemplate transitioning to another gender change their minds by the end of adolescence; why not hold off issuing proclamations of what they are entitled to do until they have reached a final resolution of who they want to be?
There is a giant chasm between teaching respect for people who are different and pretending that there are no real differences between people. In every school in America there are students who get extra help in all categories of learning - are they stigmatized by being sent to different classrooms? Are the students who are less athletic stigmatized by not making the team? Is the obese girl who isn’t picked for prom queen denied her civil rights? Aren’t all these children subject to bullying and haven’t we already instituted campaigns to discourage such behavior? Why the need to separate transgender children into their own category deserving of unique treatment not afforded to any of these other kids. By government withholding of funds from schools that don’t allow transgender integration into locker rooms and showers of their choice, we have made this “different” group different from all others. Predictably, other children and their parents will resent this special treatment and the government interference will backfire against the very children they purport to protect.
Alice might be surprised to learn that in Obamaland, no student needs to provide any medical or psychiatric support of their gender dysmorphia. Biology does not count as objective evidence and things are only what one says they are. Lewis Carroll was familiar with this type of thinking and prescient in understanding the dilemma of identity when he wrote “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland:” “Dear, dear! How queer everything is today…I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night? Let me think: was I the same when I got up this morning?…But if I’m not the same, the next question is, who in the world am I?” Most adolescents struggle with these questions whether they refer to gender or a host of other issues. In Carroll’s masterpiece, Alice eventually becomes aware that Wonderland is an illusion; in Obamaland, we no longer have the freedom to parse our own conclusions and we are all forced to obey the rules issued by the King. Oh dear, oh dear - things are getting curioser and curioser - and what unforeseen consequences they may bring.
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