Marilyn M. Singleton, MD, JD
In today’s brave new world, imagine receiving a letter from the school principal about your only child: Your son will not be home tonight but your daughter will be home in a few days.
Science deniers are teaching and molding our children. Regardless of scientific data about genetics and biology, some folks—including our august politicians—contend that people can change genders. Science lesson: there are 2 genders. The X chromosomes and Y chromosomes determine sex. With rare exceptions of random abnormalities, female is XX and male is XY. People who undergo sex reassignment procedures do not become the opposite sex; they merely change their outward appearance.
For several years, California law has allowed students to participate in sex-segregated school programs, activities, and facilities, including bathrooms, locker rooms, and athletic teams, consistent with their gender identity, regardless of the gender listed on the student’s records. Privacy alert: when in gym class locker rooms, most high school girls don’t want to undress in front of boys who identify as girls. With regard to safety and competitive fairness, biological males retain their natural advantages over female athletes despite testosterone hormone suppression. Ignoring reality, the House of Representatives passed the “Equality Act” which requires schools to allow biological males who identify as girls to compete in female sports, ironically disadvantaging women.
Parents are left out of the equation, as the government usurps their right and duty to raise their children. In Wisconsin, the “Guidance and Policies to Support Transgender, Non-binary & Gender-Expansive Students” mandates that children of any age can transition to a different gender identity at school, by changing their name and pronouns, without parental notice or consent.
Going three steps farther, California permits children to receive contraceptive hormones and abortions without parental consent based on the student’s right to privacy. Now the California Teachers Association wants to extend student privacy to the provision of hormones to students who want to change their gender. Such a decision should not be within the purview of teachers, particularly when trading heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, and infertility for what could be a phase or manifestation of an unrelated emotional problem in a developing brain is at stake.
A number of studies found that 85 percent of children experiencing gender nonconformity or gender dysphoria before the age of 10 years did not assume that gender role in adolescence. Because of our “limited ability” to predict whether gender nonconformity in a child will persist in the future, pursuing medical intervention in children was not recommended.
In adolescence, there is some question whether there is “social contagion” involved with gender issues. Some 87 percent of parents reported that along with the sudden or rapid onset of gender dysphoria, the child either had an increase in their social media/internet use, belonged to a friend group in which one or multiple friends became transgender-identified during a similar timeframe, or both. The study concluded that rapid onset gender dysphoria was a maladaptive coping mechanism, similar to anorexia. “‘Gender dysphoria’ may be used as a catch-all explanation for any kind of distress, psychological pain, and discomfort that an [adolescent] is feeling while transition is being promoted as a cure-all solution.”
Would ethical physicians even consider acquiescing to the demands of patients with body integrity disorder? This condition also begins in early adolescence when the patient feels the need to have a healthy limb amputated.
Nonetheless, the age at which children are medicalized is getting younger. Puberty-blocking drugs are routinely given to prepubescent children. Girls as young as 12 are injected with testosterone, while teen boys are treated with feminizing hormones. The rate of “gender-confirming” surgeries are increasing each year and are being performed on minor children. Girls as young as 16 have had their breasts, uterus, and ovaries removed. Given the uncertainties and fluidity of childhood gender issues, invasive medical intervention crosses the line into child abuse.
How far will the “educators” go to expose children to alternative gender and “queer” life choices? Public libraries are hosting “Drag Queen Story Hours” for children aged 3 to 11. Some schools bring the drag queens into the classrooms where students are a captive audience. According to the organizers, the point of the Drag Queen Story Hour is to “give kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models.” I remember a time when drag queen entertainment was reserved for night clubs. Teaching tolerance and acceptance of others is an admirable goal, but exposing children needlessly to adult fare goes too far.
And No, I’m not an unwoke LGBTQaphobe. Take it from a drag queen: “I have no idea why you [mothers] want drag queens to read books to your children. What in the hell has a drag queen ever done to make you . . . admire them so much, other than put on makeup and jump on the floor and writhe around and do sexual things on stage? I have absolutely no idea why you would want that to influence your child.”
Home schooling never looked so good.