A serious drift

Jonathon Van Maren writes:

French clinicians are also now taking a stand. In an open letter published four days ago on the L’Express website (and covered almost nowhere in the international press), over fifty medical professionals and prominent academics, including doctors, legal experts, educational experts, philosophers, sociologists, psychiatrists, judges, and psychoanalysts, excoriated transgender ideology and condemned “sex reassignment” in children. Published in association with the Observatory of Ideological Discourses on Children and Adolescents, the letter is worth reading in full:

The link doesn’t work, but we can read the translation JVM shares.

We can no longer remain silent about what appears to us to be a serious drift committed in the name of the emancipation of the “transgender child” (the one who declares that he was not born in the “right body”). Radical discourses legitimise requests for sex change on the basis of feelings alone, which are set up as the truth.

That right there is an important point that doesn’t get enough attention. Feelings are…not necessarily reliable as to the truth of a matter, even the truth of one’s own physical or mental state. Feelings can mislead. I think we all know this if we think about it, which often takes some nudging. Mere lack of sleep can cause very bleak moods, and if we don’t know this we can draw wild conclusions, then wake up the next morning wondering what the hell got into us. Feelings are not necessarily the truth, not even our own feelings about our own inner state, however paradoxical that may sound.

Perhaps thinking it might provide an answer, the Scottish Government has issued new LGBT inclusion guidelines since 12 August, under which children from primary school age will be able to change their names and gender at school without their parents’ consent. Without their consent and even without their parents being informed if the child requests it.

Sure, because children of six or seven know so much more about “gender” than their pesky stupid benighted parents do.

What is happening in our neighbouring countries could very quickly happen in France: the protean diffusion of these beliefs has resulted in a considerable inflation of requests for sex changes among children and more particularly among teenage girls in recent years...

Trivialised speeches claim that we could do without the biological reality, the sexual difference between men and women, in favour of chosen singularities based solely on “feelings”. These misleading ideological discourses are transmitted on social networks where many teenagers with identity problems come to seek solutions to their malaise. In the name of “self-determination” – a slogan that appeals to all progressives — children and teenagers are convinced that they can change their sex with the help of hormone treatments or even mutilating surgery. This rhetoric, spread by activists in many Western countries, uses fallacies designed to deceive.

How did we get here? And do we (still) have the right to react without being insulted or threatened? How can these rights to self-determination be a fulfilling progress? This phenomenon, the “transgender child”, is in reality a contemporary mystification that must be vigorously denounced because it is a matter of ideological embrigadement [recruitment]. They would have us believe that, in the name of the well-being and freedom of each individual, a child, freed from the agreement of its “reactionary” parents, would be able to “choose” its so-called gendered identity.

But the child is a being under construction, his or her future is in constant evolution before reaching a stage of maturity. Neuroscientists, developmentalists, psychoanalysts, child psychiatrists, paediatricians and all specialists in early childhood are unanimous on this subject.

So the child doesn’t necessarily have a stable “gender identity,” and anyway we don’t really know what “gender identity” is. Where does gender identity stop and marketing begin? Is gender identity really anything more than the accumulated ideas of what women wear and look like and say and do, ditto men? If it’s not, can we really be confident that it’s a thing as opposed to a string of impressions?

We denounce this abduction of childhood. It is now urgent to inform as many citizens as possible, of all professions, of all sides, of all ages, about what could well appear tomorrow as one of the greatest health and ethical scandals, which we would have watched happen without saying a word: the commodification of children’s bodies. For by persuading these children that they have been “assigned” a sex at birth, and that they can freely change it, they are made lifelong patients: lifelong consumers of hormonal chemicals marketed by pharmaceutical companies, recurrent consumers of ever more surgical operations in the pursuit of the chimerical dream of a fantasy body. 

Don’t we think pharmaceutical companies have already made a pretty decent haul, what with the opioids and everything?

Confusion reigns, largely maintained for the purpose of manipulating humanity in its deepest substratum: its evolution, its temporality, its wanderings and its doubts. In the name of rejecting a supposed gender assignment, we are in the process of witnessing, embarrassed, without understanding anything, an identity assignment. Thus Claude from the Club des cinq, once described as a tomboy, is now presented as transgender. We could laugh about it if it weren’t symptomatic of our era, which is struck by political radicalisms that pre-empt all debate.

We could laugh about it if it weren’t trashing so much of the world we need to live in.

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