Two Southern Baptist Leaders Want Convention to Pass Resolution Against “Transgender Identity”

Denny Burk
Denny Burk

A college professor and ethicist would like for the Southern Baptist Convention to pass a resolution opposing “transgender identity” — described in a recent Time cover story as “America’s next civil rights frontier” — when the convention meets next week in Baltimore.

Denny Burk, a professor of biblical studies at Boyce College, undergraduate arm of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., announced on his blog that he and Andrew Walker, a Ph.D. candidate at Southern Seminary who works as director of policy studies for the SBC Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, have submitted a statement to the SBC Resolutions Committee opposing efforts to “normalize” the transgender experience.

“The public consequences of normalizing transgender are upon us,” Burk explained. “School systems across the country are beginning to allow boys who identify as transgender to make use of girls’ restrooms and locker rooms (see here and here). The state of New Jersey has made it illegal for licensed counselors to help a child embrace a gender identity that matches his sex. Medical professionals recommend sex-change surgeries for some transgender persons, and some parents are pursuing surgeries for minor children who experience conflict between their gender and bodily identity.

“Just last Friday [May 30] Medicare lifted its ban on sex reassignment surgeries. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) has at different times seen majority support in both houses of Congress and would make it illegal for employers to make personnel decisions based on gender identity — a measure that would restrict the religious liberty of Christian employers.”

The proposed resolution, which may or may not be reported out of committee and if it is could be altered before presented for vote on the convention floor, affirms “God’s good design that gender identity should be determined by biological sex and not by one’s self-perception — a perception which is often influenced by fallen human nature in ways contrary to God’s design.”

It condemns “efforts to alter one’s bodily identity (e.g., cross-sex hormone therapy, gender reassignment surgery) to bring it into line with one’s perceived gender identity.” It also opposes “all efforts by any court or state legislature to validate transgender identity as morally praiseworthy” and attempts “by media and entertainment outlets and public schools to mainstream transgender identity in the eyes of our children.”

On May 29, Laverne Cox, star of “Orange is the New Black,” a Netflix comedy-drama set in a women’s prison, became the first transgender person to land on the cover of Time magazine. A month earlier fans protested Cox’s omission from the publication’s annual list of 100 Most Influential People.

In a story titled “The Transgender Tipping Point,” Time interviewed Cox about her personal journey as well as her fight for transgender rights.

“Transgender people — those who identify with a gender other than the sex they were ‘assigned at birth,’ to use the preferred phrase among trans activists — are emerging from the margins to fight for an equal place in society,” Time’s Katy Steinmetz said in a press release.

One of the biggest obstacles they face, she said, is living “in a world largely built on a fixed and binary definition of gender.”

“In many places, they are unwelcome in the men’s bathroom and the women’s,” Steinmetz said. “The effect is a constant reminder that they don’t belong.”

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: Associated Baptist Press
Bob Allen

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