By Jonathon Van Maren
Last week, I noted in this space that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears to have finally grown a spine and is standing up to the transgender movement. But there is more good news on this front. Johnson’s decision to speak up is, according to radical feminist Julie Bindel writing in the Daily Mail, just another sign of a growing trend towards sanity:
This was the week in which Britain finally came to its senses. We reached a tipping point when people on all sides decided the madness had to stop.
On Wednesday, the Prime Minister declared that ‘biological males’ should not be allowed to compete in women’s sports — and he also dared to suggest that parents should have a say in their children’s potentially life-changing decisions about gender identity.
Separately, a key public watchdog announced on Tuesday that women must have safe spaces, including female prisons and domestic violence refuges, that neither men nor trans women can enter.
Also this week, a former Cabinet minister, Damian Green, said to a BBC interviewer who had criticised him for saying ‘biology is real’: ‘You’ve said that I’ve asserted that “biology is real” as though that’s something controversial. I think once we start saying scientific facts are not real then we really are in a difficult place.’
Many of these conversations would have been unthinkable only a few weeks ago. Boris Johnson would have been monstered as ‘transphobic’ by his screeching critics, and Green would have probably had to resign for his ‘bigoted’ defence of science.
Bindel is right, and this is not just happening in the UK. In the US, criticisms that have been largely contained to sites like this one—or blogs or social media groups where desperate parents gathered to exchange information about their gender dysphoric children—are finally, finally breaking into the mainstream media. The Washington Post, for example, just published an article titled, “What I wish I’d known when I was 19 and had sex reassignment surgery.” An excerpt:
Surgery unshackled me from my body’s urges, but the destruction of my gonads introduced a different type of bondage. From the day of my surgery, I became a medical patient and will remain one for the rest of my life. I must choose between the risks of taking exogenous estrogen, which include venous thromboembolism and stroke, or the risks of taking nothing, which includes degeneration of bone health. In either case, my risk of dementia is higher, a side effect of eschewing testosterone.
What was I seeking for my sacrifice? A feeling of wholeness and perfection. I was still a virgin when I went in for surgery. I mistakenly believed that this made my choice more serious and authentic. I chose an irreversible change before I’d even begun to understand my sexuality. The surgeon deemed my operation a good outcome, but intercourse never became pleasurable. When I tell friends, they’re saddened by the loss, but it’s abstract to me — I cannot grieve the absence of a thing I’ve never had.
This is precisely the sort of thing that whistleblowers like Abigail Shrier have been yelling their heads off about for several years—and in response, trans activists simply demonized them as ugly haters who didn’t care if kids killed themselves. As Andrew Sullivan noted: “A real sign of a shift when the [Washington Post] allows a debate in its pages.”
The Los Angeles Times, another newspaper completely committed to the LGBT agenda, is also cautiously acknowledging that the transgender debate may not be as cut and dried as activists have insisted it is for the past decade—and the article details the concerns of a transgender psychologist who admits that the skyrocketing number of children identifying as transgender is extremely concerning. This may seem like a small admission—but from the LA Times, it isn’t. Jesse Singal, a liberal columnist who was excoriated for first raising the alarm on this issue several years ago, observed that it is “[c]ourageous for the LA Times to run this, and another sign that coverage of this beat is trending toward sanity.” I wouldn’t give them that much credit, but it is encouraging.