By Jonathon Van Maren
I’ve noted several times already that whether we like it or not, we are going to have to deal with the ongoing colonization of schools and the attempted invasion of families by the transgender movement. They are not planning to leave us alone. They are planning to force their ideology into our institutions, and they will eventually try to force their ideology into our Christian schools, as well. Additionally, they are attempting to gaslight parents by claiming that therapy and counselling that helps children with gender dysphoria accept their bodies is actually conversion therapy, when it is actually precisely the opposite of conversion therapy—it is the trans activists, of course, who push “transition” or “conversion.”
Because this movement will inevitably impact Christian communities, it is essential that we keep an eye on what they are up to. And this terrifying analysis from Wesley J. Smith in the National Review is another example of precisely what I have been warning about on this blog:
The American Journal of Bioethics is a mainstream professional publication with wide distribution among members of the bioethics movement and within the medical intelligentsia. If advocacy appears in AJOB, it is considered respectable; it is considered defendable; it is considered justifiable.
Which is why the article I am about to describe should alarm the h*** out of everyone. A bioethicist named Maura Priest, from Arizona State University, argues that children with gender dysphoria have the right to have their puberty blocked medically — and that if parents don’t consent, the state should push them aside and do it anyway. From, “Transgender Children and the Right to Transition:”
The formal argument runs as follows:
- The state has a duty to protect minors from serious harm inflicted by their caretakers.
2. Harm that leads to suicide is a serious harm.
3. Transgender youth with non-supportive parents are at a high risk of psychological harm leading to suicidal tendencies.
4. Therefore, the state should pay special attention to, and has a duty to protect, transgender minors from psychological harm inflicted via their caretakers.
Notice the argument being utilized here. Again, this “bioethicist” is claiming that parents who do not want to see their children permanently physically changed with hormone blockers, chemical or physical castration, infertility, and mastectomies are the ones “harming” their children! As I wrote earlier this month, trans activist are going to accuse parents of causing the suicides of their own children and use that as an excuse to claim that the state—following the demands of trans activists, of course—step in.
In fact, the only available evidence on transgender suicide rates actually contradicts their fundamental claims. The University of Birmingham analyzed 100 studies done on people who had undergone sex change surgeries and found “no conclusive evidence” that these surgeries have any psychological benefits—and you can bet they were hunting for them. One of the only existing long-term studies, done by the University Hospital and University of Bern in Switzerland, looked at the quality of life fifteen years after sex change surgeries and found that, nearly universally, recipients of these surgeries reported a lower quality of life as well as many negative side effects.
In other words, the evidence indicates that ideologically-driven activists like Priest, who masquerade as evidence-focused academics while pushing an agenda that is genuinely harmful to children, do not have a leg to stand on. More from Smith:
Rather than treating the condition [of gender dysphoria], she would reinforce gender dysphoria in those so afflicted. Which is why Priest argues that the state should propagandize dysphoric children to want this radical intervention, and moreover, to strip objecting parents of their right to decide:
My strategy for defending the formal argument above revolves around arguing in favor of two normative claims:
1. Transgender youth should have access to treatment that is not dependent upon parental approval.
2. There should be state-sponsored, publicly available information regarding gender dysphoria, transgender identification, and means of appropriate treatment.
More specifically, Priest argues that schools should propagandize for transgenderism and provide medical and psychological interventions without parental consent:
Implementing this policy only is half the battle. Transgender youth without supportive parents are not helped unless they access health care clinics and counseling that will help with the transition. Hence, there is an additional duty of the state to help facilitate sharing this information with vulnerable youths. I argued that one of the first places this should be done is in public schools. In addition, information should be available at publicly funded health clinics.
Eventually, as you knew she would, the ironically named Priest shouts her bigotry against traditional faith values:
One objection to my proposal is simply a concern about the intrusion it imposes on the autonomy of the family. Imagine that parents have religious values against children expressing transgender dress and behavior. Are not parents allowed to raise their kids according to their own religious values? And if so, how can I argue that parents must be forced not only to accept, but to facilitate, transition?
The mistake here is in thinking that parents have rights to raise their children according to their religious values, full stop. Like nearly all rights, the right of parents to raise children according to their own values is not absolute. Rather, parents have such authority up to and until the point at which a given decision or practice threatens serious harm. According to some religious sects, after all, girls who are raped should be put to death. Obviously, parents have no right to do this regardless of whether doing so accords with their religion.
Good grief. Refusing to allow your child to be the subject of experimental interventions is equivalent morally and should be legally, she says, to killing a child who was raped? That’s just flat-out nuts.
Don’t just roll your eyes and say this will never happen. Bioethics radicals intend to impose their views in law, medical ethics, and public policy. And as I wrote above, AJOB isn’t a fringe publication. By publishing Priest’s piece as a “target” article, accompanied by shorter commentaries supporting or disagreeing with her advocacy, the editors are declaring that advocacy to push parents of children with gender dysphoria aside in deciding how to care for and treat their disturbed children is a respectable argument.
Smith is right. Priest is not some fringe academic that we can afford to ignore. She is speaking for the entire LGBT movement, and they are looking at our children.
For anyone interested, my book on The Culture War, which analyzes the journey our culture has taken from the way it was to the way it is and examines the Sexual Revolution, hook-up culture, the rise of the porn plague, abortion, commodity culture, euthanasia, and the gay rights movement, is available for sale here.