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Valley of delusion

Reality may be starting to push back against the transgender craze

Valley of delusion

A person holds a transgender flag at a rally to mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in New York. (Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images)

It was bound to happen sooner or later. At the church where I help serve dinner for the downtown community once a month, I meet all kinds: street people, addicts, gays, and the occasional cross-dresser. This individual flaunted the figure and clothing of a teenage girl, with the facial hair and facial structure of a man. It wasn’t just the face, though; no one would have taken this person for anything but male, no matter the accoutrement.  

We had a pleasant conversation, but later, when making a request for our guest, I used the pronoun “he.” I was immediately corrected: “She.”  

“Uh, OK, sorry,” I said. An apology may not have been warranted, but it was automatic. And that was not the time for an extended conversation on gender confusion.

A small exchange, but it indicates the direction we’re headed. How far we can travel in that direction is not so indicative. After reading about it for the last several years, and talking with the one transgendered person I know by name, I’ve come to some conclusions about the social phenomenon known as transgenderism.

My understanding is that a small fraction of the population, less than 1 percent, suffers from genuine confusion about their sexual identity—the brain, somehow, disagrees with the body about whether one is male or female. This confusion, formerly classified as a “disorder,” appears to be a legitimate psychological problem that might, at least in some cases, be successfully treated.  

But in 2013 the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black made a star out of Laverne Cox, the first openly transgender person to appear as a series regular. Beginning in 2015, Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner made a very public transition overwhelmingly backed by the media (Wikipedia no longer has an entry for “Bruce Jenner”). “Trans,” once the junior “T” of the LBGT acronym, became the new civil-rights frontier. The advocacy group GLAD, formerly Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, changed its name to GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, in order to underscore trans inclusion.  

Trans became trendy, especially among the young. The rate of self-identification with the opposite gender, or no gender, has mushroomed among school-age children. According to an extensive survey conducted two years ago, as many as 25 percent of California kids are questioning their biological sex. 

Given that teens naturally struggle with defining themselves, this is extremely dangerous. Permanent sterility is only one of the possible health consequences of puberty blockers, hormone therapy, and transition surgery, and there’s no evidence that psychological well-being is any better. Recent studies indicate the opposite. I predict that in 10 years, or less, we’ll see a monumental backlash from 20-somethings whose lives were permanently altered, or even ended, by this delusion.

For the last two years, GLAAD’s “Accelerating Acceptance” report has shown declining acceptance of transgenderism, especially among young people.

But even now, reality is beginning to push back. Female athletes resent getting trounced by biological men in women’s sports events. Committed feminists resent being labeled as “terfs” (trans-exclusionary radical feminists) when they ask what it even means to be a woman. For the last two years, GLAAD’s “Accelerating Acceptance” report has shown declining acceptance, especially among young people who are usually the first to hop aboard a civil rights bandwagon. In every demographic, young men and women reported discomfort with learning a family member was LGBT, or having such a person as their child’s teacher or family doctor, or sitting beside an LGBT individual at church. In some demographics, the acceptance level dropped almost 50 percent in a year’s time.  

Andrew Sullivan, a gay activist with some conservative leanings, believes the trans community’s high-handedness has alienated middle America. He’s for dropping the T altogether, because the interests of Ts and LGs conflict in significant ways, and he fears trans activism will wipe out the progress gays and lesbians have made.

The pushback may signal a return to sanity, or a reaction against the efforts of activists to herd an entire culture into this uncharted territory. It could get ugly. Our challenge and calling is to see the herd as sheep without a shepherd, and worthy of our compassion as God’s anxious and confused image-bearers.


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  • VISTA48
    Posted: Mon, 08/05/2019 12:45 pm

    This is a tightrope walk. It is difficult sometimes to balance compassion for confused and hurting individuals while still resisting (or fighting against) the LBGTQ agenda. Part of the problem is that the agenda is pushed so aggressively that the individuals get lost in the chaos. As it is, the push towards transitional therepies and sex reassignment surgeries while villifying all other treatments seems to champion the agenda at the expense of the person. 

  • Rich277
    Posted: Tue, 08/06/2019 10:02 am

    2+2=5. Some people see George Orwell’s books as a warning; others see them as training manuals.

  •  Xion's picture
    Posted: Tue, 08/06/2019 11:34 am

    "This confusion, formerly classified as a “disorder,” appears to be a legitimate psychological problem..."

    According to whom?  Not according to the Bible.  Neither is there any scientific evidence.  25% of California students may be confused, but science and their own bodies tell them what they already know.  We all acknowledge that physical brain disorders exist, but the Bible is clear that homosexuality and all of its offshoots are voluntary, a choice, a behavior, a sin. 

    Professing Christians have been in retreat for over a century on everything discussed in Romans 1.  First we accepted creation as our Creator.  I can't even mention this in our church without backlash.  Now we are accepting all of the consequences of that erroneous thinking.  LBGTQ is fundamentally a war on God, by declaring war on their bodies.  All of this will pass away, but the Word of God stands for ever.

  • Andy Knudsen
    Posted: Sat, 08/10/2019 02:31 am

    I agree with the spirit of your comment - sinful behavior is a choice.

    However, I do not think that people necessarily choose to be confused, just like people do not necessarily choose to be tempted. That is because we are born with original sin so that our natures are hopelessly turned against God.

    Ephesians 2:1-3 says "And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind."

    Thanks be to God for bringing us to life from our spiritual death - Ephesians 2:4-7 says "But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus."

  • not silent
    Posted: Fri, 08/16/2019 03:42 pm

    Not all the physical illnesses we know today are mentioned in the Bible; but very few Christians would tell someone with a physical illness that it's not real because the Bible doesn't mention it or insist that their physical problems were all due to personal sin.  Sometimes an illness MAY be directly tied to a sin, but not always.  Sometimes a physical illness is genetic, sometimes it is environmental (like an infection), and sometimes it is due to psychological distress or anxiety. 

    Mental illness can also be tied to a person's own sin, but it can be the result of genetic or other physical factors in combination with environmental issues, like abuse or trauma. Gender confusion is not the same as homosexuality, though they can coexist. Someone I knew personally experienced gender confusion, but she was not gay. She did not choose those feelings, and she did not understand them-as far as she knew, she was born that way and just had to live with it.  We all have choices of how to act, but she was just a kid with very little guidance or awareness.  Many years later, she found that her feelings of gender confusion were caused by past abuse. I am not saying or implying that all cases of gender dysphoria are just like hers; in fact, I doubt that they are.  I suspect that some cases of gender confusion could be caused at least partly by hormonal or genetic factors. 

    God has given us instructions for how to live, and his commandments protect us from pain.  I think we as Christians often get this backwards when we start the conversation with condemnation instead of showing people that God's laws are there to PROTECT them. It's probably very hard for people to seek God when it seems like God made them with certain feelings-because they didn't choose them but have had them as long as they can remember-but they keep hearing that God hates them because of those feelings.  

    We have allowed Satan to warp our message in a way that makes us feel self-righteous and pushes others away-much like the religious leaders in the time of Jesus. I am not suggesting we deny sin; but, If all we preach is condemnation, we will just reinforce the incorrect idea that God hates people and wants to keep them from love and pleasure. Jesus never denied sin, but he offered grace and healing THEN he said to "go and sin no more."  There are a lot of people out there who are in pain, mentally and physically; and they are desperately seeking a way to numb that pain.  If all they see in us is condemnation, they are going to turn away from us and go towards the solutions the world offers.  However, if we use compassion and mercy, I think it will be easier for them to see that God loves them and that he gives his laws for our protection. 


  •  nevertheless's picture
    Posted: Tue, 08/13/2019 08:37 pm

    Thank you Janie B. Cheaney. One may always hope. I predict the left will use it to bludgeon believers in Christ long before they realize that it was a travesty.  

  • KK
    Posted: Sun, 09/01/2019 12:01 pm

    It boggles my mind how blind folks are about the illogic of transgenderism, that if the body and mind are in disagreement in any other way, we treat the mind, but in this case we change the objective aspect, the body? It makes no sense. Thank you for your reasoned arguments; every little bit helps me in how I approach this issue and those struggling with it.