Rethinking Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation in Light of It

I was holding off writing this simply because I've had, and still have, a great deal on my plate and have been, and still am, trying to work on things in order of survival-priority. However, there's a great deal happening in this gender-identity sphere right now. It's pulled this post forward.

As Arkansas bans treatments for transgender youth, 15 other states consider similar bills

I found this video interesting and informative.

Straight Guys and Trans Girls

For me, the fact of inter-sexed people has always been the pivotal issue. It's a fact that the human race is not born simply binary. There's a spectrum upon which everyone falls. In addition, that spectrum is not fixed but subject to constant changes, individually and societally.

The hard, "conservative" position that there is only a strict, unchanging binary is simply untenable. It's intellectually dishonest. It's a contrived, arbitrary cultural construct with no basis in reality.

Yes, there is the Y chromosome, but that is not the be-all and end-all of the matter. Real people range from one end of that "binary" to the other and every place in between. They range that way physically, psychologically, socially, and culturally.

I will share my own testimony concerning myself right here to help make the point. I am gender nonconforming. I'm not a trans person, but I'm still gender nonconforming in that I totally disagree that men can't or shouldn't wear open bottom clothes known as skirts and dresses. Men have worn skirts and dresses throughout more of prehistory and history than not. It was only recently and in only certain societies that the prohibition against men in open bottom clothes arose.

The truth of the matter is that open bottom clothes for men are actually healthier. The testes require cooling in order to properly perform their function to the fullest. I'm not sure of all the different changes in the environment and culture that have contributed to it, but males, and I use the term loosely rather than the hard-binary, have much less naturally occurring testosterone in their systems than in previous generations. The slide downward has been happening for several generations now. When I was a fairly young man, it was said that we weren't half the men our grandfathers were, testosterone speaking.

In addition to fully opposing the ridiculous rule against open bottom clothes for men (by the way, Jesus wore open bottom clothes), I also totally reject the ban by "macho men" of pinks and violets and such for males. I love those colors. That doesn't make me trans, not that I'm saying people can't be freely trans. They can.

The "masculine" was hijacked somewhere along the line to exclude any signs of "weakness." Well, those think typically considered feminine in a male don't make that male necessarily weaker. There are plenty of very strong people who like soft, comfortable, delicate, even "frilly" things for and on themselves.

The video did a good job concerning sexual orientation and gender identity. I don't need to go into it further. It's a fact that many trans women and men pass, meaning one can't readily tell there's been a transition but rather take the person as having been born that way.

Over the last few months, I've become a great deal more sympathetic. It's been a process of facing the fact that arbitrary dictators have been mentally and physically indoctrinating generations into believing there are only male and females and each is born fixed and shouldn't even ponder what their true, natural selves might be absent that extremely harsh indoctrination.

Personally, I think the whole process started so that rulers would have more subjects and larger armies so those rulers could further enrich themselves at the expense of everyone else.

As for the new laws discussed in the linked article, it's true that children change their minds. However, more don't than do and by magnitudes of order.

There's no perfect solution right now. One size doesn't fit all. But believing only in the hard binary is to live in denial of truth, and that's never good.

An SOCE win

IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE ELEVENTH CIRCUIT

No. 19-10604

D.C. Docket No. 9:18-cv-80771-RLR
ROBERT W. OTTO, JULIE H. HAMILTON,
Plaintiffs-Appellants,
versus
CITY OF BOCA RATON, FLORIDA,
COUNTY OF PALM BEACH, FLORIDA,
Defendants-Appellees.

Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Southern District of Florida

(November 20, 2020)
Before MARTIN, GRANT, and LAGOA, Circuit Judges
...

Defendants say that the ordinances “safeguard[] the physical and psychological well-being of minors.” Together with their amici, they present a series of reports and studies setting out harms. But when examined closely, these documents offer assertions rather than evidence, at least regarding the effects ofpurely speech-based SOCE. Indeed, a report from the American Psychological Association, relied on by the defendants, concedes that “nonaversive and recent approaches to SOCE have not been rigorously evaluated.”7 In fact, it found a “complete lack” of “rigorous recent prospective research” on SOCE. As for speech-based SOCE, the report notes that recent research indicates that those who have participated have mixed views: “there are individuals who perceive they have been harmed and others who perceive they have benefited from nonaversive SOCE.” What’s more, because of this “complete lack” of rigorous recent research, the report concludes that it has “no clear indication of the prevalence of harmful outcomes among people who have undergone” SOCE.8 We fail to see how, even completely crediting the report, such equivocal conclusions can satisfy strict scrutiny and overcome the strong presumption against content-based limitations on speech.

[footnotes:]

7 The dissent’s claim that a “mountain of rigorous evidence” supports the ordinances is in serious tension with this acknowledgment of the lack of rigorous research on nonaversive SOCE. Dissenting Op. at 42.

8 We focus our attention on the APA’s 2009 task force report because it “performed a systematic review of the peer-reviewed literature” to assess SOCE. Many of the other reports cited by the dissent—including those from the World Health Organization and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—primarily rely on the APA’s task force report to draw their own conclusions about SOCE. So we choose instead to discuss the APA’s report directly. Additionally, we discuss the APA’s 2009 report, rather than its 1998 resolution, because the 2009 task force was specifically asked to “[r]eview and update” the 1998 resolution. Finally, we note that very little of the APA report considers evidence solely related to purely speech-based therapy.

What to do about gender dysphoria: If you are a progressive, as I am, you should never jump on a bandwagon full of people telling you that anything and everything any non-progressives believe or say is wrong

The truth shall set you free. The following is NOT anti-progressive:

... the original study had been celebrated by the media and was then used in social media against anyone with a dissenting viewpoint to accuse them of being against science.

This "does show that the cultural moment in which we're living suggests that there's only one allowed conclusion to this question," he said. "And the only allowed conclusion is that transition is the best solution. The biggest data set now shows and that's what this study uses, the biggest data set shows that there's no benefits, psychological benefits to patients of hormonal and surgical transition."
...
"Right now, parents are being told that they need to put their children on the prescribed puberty-blocking drugs, Cross X hormones, etc, etc," he said. "That is entirely an unstudied experimental treatment protocol. And so I think in particular we need more research on what we can do for young people, children who feel uncomfortable in their own bodies and how we can help them feel comfortable once again. But we shouldn't be running to prescribe puberty-blocking drugs and Cross X hormones. Parents should know the facts about this as well."

Prestigious Psychiatry Journal Retracts Findings, Admits Sex-Reassignment Surgery Didn't Fix Mental Health

The study, published October 4, 2019 in the American Journal of Psychiatry, purported to show that “gender-affirmation” treatment improves transgender mental health. The study utilized data from the Swedish Total Population Register, with information from more than 9.7 million Swedes, or about 95 percent of the country.

The claimed findings from the study led to headlines in mainstream media outlets proclaiming things like “Long-Term Mental Health Benefits of Gender-Affirming Surgery for Transgender Individuals” (American Psychiatric Association), “Sex-reassignment surgery yields long-term mental health benefits” (NBC News), and “Transgender surgery linked with better long-term mental health, study shows” (ABC News).

But University of Texas sociology professor Mark Regneus pointed out last year that the study “found no mental health benefits for hormonal interventions in this population,” and the claim that “gender-reassignment” surgery helped mental health hinged on the outcomes of only three people -- from a total dataset of 9.7 million people.

The authors of the study have now conceded that “the results demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care.”

Moreover, the authors also note that gender-confused people who undergo “gender-reassignment” surgery are more likely to be treated for anxiety disorders than those who don’t have such surgery.

Authors of study showing benefits of ‘gender-affirming’ treatment issue ‘correction,’ admit they’re wrong

As the post's title states, if you are a progressive, as I am, you should never jump on a bandwagon full of people telling you that anything and everything any non-progressives believe or say is wrong.

The same hold true for non-progressives vis-a-vis progressives.

Why I founded the Christian Commons Project

This is why I founded the Christian Commons Project in 2007.

... the food to feed people and the money with which to buy that food has to come from somewhere. And just as it has for the past few decades, it’s the alliance between anti-hunger organizations, the USDA, and corporate America, or the hunger industrial complex, that provides. It is this paradigm that is filling the vacuum left by Trumpian sociopathy, and as James Bailey, a management professor at George Washington University says, “Every crisis creates a void. And whatever force fills that void, inherits power.”

We should all be concerned that, in the post-pandemic era, the hunger industrial complex becomes more robust at the expense of the movement for fair wages, strong nutrition programs, and universal health care. We should be concerned about the growth of charity because, frankly, the unholy alliance between food banks and corporate America has shown itself to be more interested in maintaining the problem of hunger than actually solving it. Hunger is, after all, good for business.

The COVID Crisis Is Reinforcing the Hunger Industrial Complex