I do not for a moment want to minimize the very real struggles of those who identify as transgender nor do I want to ignore those individuals who have genuine biological or genetic abnormalities.
I simply want to state once again – really, I want to shout it from the rooftops – that perception does not change reality, and so Bruce Jenner is no more a woman than Rachel Dolezal is black.
In the last week, a steady stream of articles has drawn comparisons, both positive and negative, between Jenner and Dolezal, with not a few stating that Dolezal’s actions are harmful to the transgender cause. (The opening lines of Ben Shapiro’s fairly comprehensive article, detailing many other claims made by Dolezal and dripping with sarcasm, are classic.)
Obviously, I have no idea whether Dolezal genuinely believes she is black or simply chooses to identify as black, but what’s clear, if all the reports are true, is that she is not black.
How can I be so dogmatic?
It’s because skin color is verifiable.
It is not based on perception.
It is not based on feelings.
It is based on provable data.
The same is true when it comes to gender (again, putting aside the question of how to best help those with biological or genetic abnormalities that are not so easily categorized as male or female).
Some people are genetically and biologically male while others are genetically and biologically female, and to alter their physical appearance through cosmetic surgery no more changes their real identity than wearing leopard skins transforms a human being into a big cat.
The same is true when it comes to hormonal treatments: You can pump up Bruce Jenner with all the female hormones in the world but that does not make him into a woman. (To date, we have not been presented with any evidence that he is a genetic female in any form.)
In the words of Dr. Paul McHugh, one of the nation’s most respected psychiatrists yet a man despised by many in the transgender community as out of date and out of touch,
“Transgendered men do not become women, nor do transgendered women become men. All (including Bruce Jenner) become feminized men or masculinized women, counterfeits or impersonators of the sex with which they ‘identify.'”
Not only so, but in many ways, the transgender movement is based on fundamental contradictions.
Otherwise, if it is gender stereotyping to say that boys like to play with guns and girls like to play with dolls, why are we told that our little boy is actually a girl if he likes to play with dolls? (I’m oversimplifying things here to make a point, but I trust the point is clear.)
Why did Chastity Bono say a few years back that, with hormonal therapy, she could better relate to being a man because she became more easily angered? Is this what distinguishes males from females?
If it’s gender stereotyping to say that women (rather than them) like to wear pretty nail polish, why does Bruce Jenner’s desire to wear pretty nail polish confirm that he is female?
And if perception is reality, why go through years of hormone therapy and surgical procedures to alter one’s very real biology rather than say, “I’m a female with what appear to be male organs,” or, “I’m a male with what appear to be female organs”?
The very fact that so much effort is made to change one’s physical realities (including voice pitch, the shape of the Adam’s apple, and a host of other things) reminds us that gender is not simply what someone perceives it to be. As noted by Joseph Backholm, “The irony is that a sex change itself reinforces the gender stereotypes they claim to be rejecting.”
Please understand that I am not a Johnny-come-lately to these issues.
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SOURCE: The Christian Post