getting opposite "feels" for trans people

The national conversation on transgendered persons has boiled down to feelings.

Some feelings are of the "creeped out" strain.

Some feelings are of the religiously guided form.

But feelings are not a useful guide to policy on civil rights.

Because some of the people do not have "creeped out" feelings.

Some people are religiously guided to acceptance.

Feelings do not move towards solutions on a political level.

Fortunately, our country is guided on the principle of no state church. All religions are treated equally. All minorities are entitled to the same civil rights as the majority.

So if feelings and religious sentiments are not valid considerations for guiding civil policy, what is left? Facts and figures of the observable and reproducible variety.

Transgendered persons are a normal variant of the human species, just like intersexuality, homosexuality, asexuality, and bisexuality. For all of these, the outworking of these genders and sexes does not harm anyone else, including willing intimate partners. This is a fact. Fear of national judgment by the deity of your understanding is a feeling not a fact. Fear of nor disgust with non-majority sexuality/gender identity is a feeling not a fact. Not understanding that sexual organs does not always correspond to gender identity could lead to those feelings, and education can solve that.

Facts are that ostracism of minorities from their fully entitled civil rights leads to higher suicide rates among adolescents and poorer mental and physical and even economic health, inhibiting the pursuit of "life, liberty, and ... happiness."

Comparing those with harmless minority gender identities/sexuality with harmful proclivities is a category mistake which can cause mental, emotional, and physical damage to the harmless minorities. One lawmaker compared a trans person to an anorexic, saying both need treatment. However, an anorexic is slowly committing suicide, whereas a trans or gay adolescent is also more likely to attempt suicide than his or her peers. For the first, intensive intervention is necessary to prevent death, for the other, social acceptance, recognition and accommodation will also prevent death.

Some people are born with an arrested sexual attraction to children who can never be consenting partners. When pedophiles and pederasts have intercourse with children it is always rape. In pure numbers, most convicted pedophiles are heterosexual. Their sexual compulsion as rapists brings them often to occupations of trust around children, often in churches and education settings. Children need to be protected from them. This is a fact. Children do not need to be protected from transgendered people. Transgender homicides and suicide are very high for their population. They need to be protected from society, which is why they are entitled to their full civil rights.

We are entitled to our feelings, but when it comes to policy, we have to look at data. Trans people have been using restrooms for ages without issues. Suddenly, those civil rights they have enjoyed, though usually without the majority's knowledge, are being threatened, putting them at risk of violence in public restrooms by those with wounded feelings. Those are facts. Facts need to guide our discussion on civil rights.



Cartoon and more great artwork from David Hayward, the Naked Pastor.

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