Let’s Just Say It: Transgenderism Is a Mental Illness - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Let’s Just Say It: Transgenderism Is a Mental Illness

It isn’t a civil rights cause, it isn’t a new form of free expression, it isn’t a natural societal evolution.

It’s insanity. And facilitating it, as in the case of the supposed “medical professionals” increasingly pushing it on children, is evil.

We’re seeing this in more and more vivid detail as the transgender craze — and it is a craze, make no mistake about that — broadens and touches more and more lives. It’s becoming harder and harder to sustain the myth that chemical castrations and hormone baths and disfiguring surgeries lead to normal lives.

More and more, we know that they don’t. Not that we didn’t know already.

What we know is that post-op transexuals have staggeringly high suicide rates. Over-the-top suicide rates. A 2020 study indicated that some 82 percent of transgender individuals thought about suicide and 40 percent actually attempted it. And that’s for people who’ve “done the work.”

Why doesn’t “gender-affirming medical care” help? Because lopping off body parts doesn’t address the problem, which is in the mind.

And the soul.

Dr. Paul McHugh, the university distinguished service professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, described why. McHugh said, “Transgendered men do not become women, nor do transgendered women become men. All (including Bruce Jenner) become feminized men or masculinized women, counterfeits or impersonators of the sex with which they ‘identify.’ In that lies their problematic future.”

You can’t go from a man to a woman just by getting a boob job and chopping off your testicles. You might be able to present as one, but your chromosomes won’t change, and because of that, you’re going to be a medical patient your entire life as you fight your own biology.

And ultimately, you will lose. If your body is exhumed and examined many years after your death, archaeologists will see your biological sex in your remains — not the “gender” by which you identify.

Encouraging people to live a lie is not kind. It’s not the road to health and happiness. Transgenderism used to be called something known as “gender identity dysphoria,” a mental condition. The condition didn’t change; the politics did. The Left was looking for something new it could use as a cultural aggression and transgender mental illness fit the bill — it was suitably shocking and grotesque, its protagonists were suitably transgressive, and it promised suitable expense and profiteering, for a good long run.

The problem is this goes too far. This hurts too many people. Lives are at stake.

Over the weekend, I had a column about Matt Walsh’s testimony in front of a Tennessee General Assembly committee hearing on a bill that would ban “gender-affirming medical care” for children. In that piece, I had a link and an excerpt from a harrowing first-person story by Jamie Reed, a case worker at Washington University in St. Louis’ gender clinic. She’s as culturally and politically left as it’s possible to be, but after seeing the abject quackery passing itself off as health care in that clinic, she had no choice but to blow the whistle on the entire industry.

And it’s an industry.

Our corrupted medical profession has recognized that turning children into transexual Dr. Mengele experiments holds the potential for vast profits over the course of a lifetime. The never-ending battle against one’s own biology necessitates endless consultations, prescriptions, and procedures. Video Walsh uncovered from Vanderbilt University’s launch of its own gender-affirmation division outlined as much.

And what’s just beginning to happen here is well underway across the pond. In the U.K., they’re shutting down the Tavistock Centre, which was the country’s designated transgender house of horrors for kids, after countless tales of pushing confused children into a life of nonstop medical and mental problems:

A new book reveals how Dr Matt Bristow, who worked at the Tavistock Clinic’s Gender Identity Development Service (Gids) for five years, raised concerns that boys and girls who said they wanted to change sex might simply be gay.

He warned gay children were ‘pushed down another path’, towards transitioning, and that there was a ‘reluctance’ from the Gids leadership to engage properly with sexuality.

And the doctor claimed that many heterosexual members of staff ‘just didn’t realise’ that many gender non-conforming behaviours applied just as much to children who grew up to be gay, lesbian or bisexual as to children who would grow up to be trans.

Examples include things like cross-dressing, feeling different, not necessarily fitting in with other children of their own sex, or having friends predominantly of the opposite sex, he said.

Staff at the centre even joked there would be ‘no gay people left at the rate Gids was going’, it was claimed.

Dr Bristow, who was openly gay when he joined the service, said when he raised concerns it was suggested to him that homosexual staff ‘weren’t professionally distant enough’. Gids deny this claim.

It’s about time gay people began distancing themselves from the transgender movement. Transgenderism destroys the gay argument, you know — gay people say they were “born this way,” and while that’s been difficult to prove biologically, it at least makes some sense. But transgender people were certainly not “born this way.” Except for a very tiny portion of the population suffering from, essentially, genetic mutations, people are born either male or female, and transgenderism is a conscious choice to repudiate nature.

It isn’t even driven by sexual desire. It’s driven by self-hatred. It’s driven by mental illness. That’s why none of the therapeutic corruption of the medical establishment has thus far been able to reduce the suicide rate.

But in this horrific age, when speaking the truth is so often “controversial” and forbidden, simply reporting the facts is a revolutionary act.

Things have gone so sideways that the New York Times, which has a near 100-year-old record of printing convenient lies, going all the way back to the cover-up of the Holodomor by its “Pulitzer Prize-winning” Moscow correspondent Walter Duranty, is now under fire from its own employees for publishing material questioning the propriety of the transgender industry. An open letter from more than 200 of the paper’s contributors to Philip B. Corbett, associate managing editor for standards, expresses outrage at the “bias” against transgenderism in its reporting on the issue. From the letter:

For example, Emily Bazelon’s article “The Battle Over Gender Therapy” uncritically used the term “patient zero” to refer to a trans child seeking gender⁠-⁠affirming care, a phrase that vilifies transness as a disease to be feared. Bazelon quoted multiple expert sources who have since expressed regret over their work’s misrepresentation. Another source, Grace Lidinksy⁠-⁠Smith, was identified as an individual person speaking about a personal choice to detransition, rather than the President of GCCAN, an activist organization that pushes junk science and partners with explicitly anti⁠-⁠trans hate groups.

In a similar case, Katie Baker’s recent feature “When Students Change Gender Identity and Parents Don’t Know” misframed the battle over children’s right to safely transition. The piece fails to make clear that court cases brought by parents who want schools to out their trans children are part of a legal strategy pursued by anti-trans hate groups. These groups have identified trans people as an “existential threat to society” and seek to replace the American public education system with Christian homeschooling, key context Baker did not provide to Times readers.

The natural destination of poor editorial judgment is the court of law. Last year, Arkansas’ attorney general filed an amicus brief in defense of Alabama’s Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act, which would make it a felony, punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment, for any medical provider to administer certain gender⁠-⁠affirming medical care to a minor (including puberty blockers) that diverges from their sex assigned at birth. The brief cited three different New York Times articles to justify its support of the law: Bazelon’s “The Battle Over Gender Therapy,” Azeen Ghorayshi’s “Doctors Debate Whether Trans Teens Need Therapy Before Hormones,” and Ross Douthat’s “How to Make Sense of the New L.G.B.T.Q. Culture War.” As recently as February 8th, 2023, attorney David Begley’s invited testimony to the Nebraska state legislature in support of a similar bill approvingly cited the Times’ reporting and relied on its reputation as the “paper of record” to justify criminalizing gender⁠-⁠affirming care.

Douthat’s piece was published in the Opinion section, which lost one of the paper’s most consistently published trans writers, Jennifer Finney Boylan, following the Times’ recent decision not to renew her contract.

As thinkers, we are disappointed to see the New York Times follow the lead of far-right hate groups in presenting gender diversity as a new controversy warranting new, punitive legislation. Puberty blockers, hormone replacement therapy, and gender⁠-⁠affirming surgeries have been standard forms of care for cis and trans people alike for decades. Legal challenges to gender⁠-⁠nonconformity date back even further, with 34 cities in 21 states passing laws against cross⁠-⁠dressing between 1848 and 1900, usually enforced alongside so-called prohibitions against public indecency that disproportionately targeted immigrants, people of color, sex workers, and other marginalized groups. Such punishments are documented as far back as 1394, when police in England detained Eleanor Rykener on suspicion of the crime of sodomy, exposing her after an interrogation as “John.” This is not a cultural emergency.

These same 200 will no doubt declare that “climate change” is an emergency. But 40 percent of those people whose lives are directly affected by climate change are not attempting suicide.

Or at least one assumes they aren’t. As it is quite difficult to find anyone whose life is definitively impacted by anthropogenic global warming, it might be difficult to generate a representative sample so as to measure suicidal ideation and action.

The screeching at the Times, which is as friendly a legacy media outlet to transgenderism and other such causes as anyone could possibly hope for, over its relatively benign coverage, is part and parcel of trans advocacy’s operative spirit.

It’s all accusations, threats, and demands.

Straight men are bigots for refusing to date “trans women.” No one stops to notice that the demand is for a straight man to engage in a homosexual relationship with another man; that point isn’t even allowed to be made. Instead the fundamental dissonance is dismissed as bigotry.

You’re similarly a bigot if you find it unacceptable that biological men should declare themselves women and then compete in organized sports. The Lia Thomas debacle showed how utterly dysfunctional the moment is; here was a man swimming against women in women’s events and displaying male genitalia in locker rooms as he leered at women in similar states of undress — and to oppose such lunacy is to be filled with “hate.”

The gaslighting, the screeching, the threats of violence even against famous cultural figures like Dave Chappelle and J.K. Rowling…

It’s all insanity.

These people are insane. They don’t need empowerment. They don’t need facilitation. They don’t need bespoke pronouns. They certainly don’t need to be afforded status as a civil rights cause.

What they need is therapeutic mental health treatment. Because transgenderism is a mental illness. And the sane are making ourselves crazy attempting to go along.

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Scott McKay is a contributing editor at The American Spectator  and publisher of the Hayride, which offers news and commentary on Louisiana and national politics, and RVIVR.com, a national political news aggregation and opinion site. Additionally, he's the author of the new book The Revivalist Manifesto: How Patriots Can Win The Next American Era, available at Amazon.com. He’s also a writer of fiction — check out his three Tales of Ardenia novels Animus, Perdition and Retribution at Amazon. Scott's other project is The Speakeasy, a free-speech social and news app with benefits - check it out here.
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