Gender Identity and Rampant Stupidity

English: Diagram of a cross-section of the hum...
English: Diagram of a cross-section of the human male reproductive system. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Where I grew up, there were two genders. You were either a boy or a girl depending on which reproductive organs you had. You could be a girl who liked to play soccer, lift weights and hang out with boys, but you were still a girl and vice versa. It’s not the same way in the US. I have heard it said that Gender is different from sex. While sex is fixed at birth, Gender is what you identify yourself as. That’s poppycock. Allow me to explain.

If all goes well in a woman’s pregnancy, she is going to give birth to a child with one of two types of reproductive system. Let’s call them type A and type B. Type A includes ovaries, mammary glands, a uterus and several other organs. Type B includes a Penis, Scrotum and Testicles. Let’s call individuals of type A ‘women’ and individuals of type B ‘men’. (Just for simplicity)

Women and Men often have distinct physical, emotional and behavioral characteristics. As a result, society comes to expect them to behave in certain ways and want and do certain things. Every once in a while, however, there comes an individual who wants to buck the trend – a woman who wants to study engineering instead of medicine and a man who wants to be a nurse instead of an engineer, for instance. Despite their uncharacteristic behavior, they still share the same type of reproductive system as their more traditional peers. As a result, society still classifies them as ‘men’ or ‘women’ based on their reproductive system.English: Schematic drawing of female reproduct...

There are certain things that could go wrong in this system. Let’s look at case studies.

Sandy: Sandy has reproductive system A and so is cultural classified as a woman. However, she wants to be a man. Since the age of 2 she has dressed in the clothes of her male counterparts and asked to be referred to as ‘he’. She acts in accordance with the culturally accepted characteristics of men. i.e. she dresses, walks, talks and acts the way men do on average.

Ginny: Ginny also has reproductive system A but she believes herself to be a man. She acts very much like Sandy.

Carl: Carl has reproductive system type B. He does not want to be a woman, but he does want to act like one. He wants to wear skirts, be a ballerina, wear makeup, etc. But he doesn’t mind having the reproductive system that he has.

Of the three, Carl is the one with no real problem. Sure, he’s weird, but so are girls who study engineering and don’t like teddy bears (in my opinion). One might argue that there is something about him that goes deeper than desiring the unconventional, that while it is normal for girls to pursue engineering, it is disturbing for one to wish to behave like a man. That’s an issue for another day. As far as I’m concerned, he may dress as he wishes. He may pour ketchup on his head and dress solely in banana leaves for all I care.

Sandy is different. She has a female reproductive system. She does not want it. She wants a male one. She wants to be something that she is not. Now, if she were a dancer and she wanted to be an architect, I would tell her to go to college and get a degree. But, no. This is akin to a black girl wanting to be white. She might want it really, really, badly. She might bleach her skin and dye her hair and wear colored contacts, but she’ll only look different. There’s this really cheesy saying about ‘you being the best person to be’ that I would want Sandy to know about.

Ginny’s case is even more serious. She believes herself to be something she is not. Every time I see my psychiatrist, she asks questions to make sure I’m not deluded. Of course, I give the same answers every time, but she has to check because believing something that is obviously not true is a serious illness.

Those who say that gender is what you self identify as want to make it so that people like Ginny and Sandy, instead of getting counseling to find out why they are so dissatisfied with who they are are affirmed, praised and ‘accepted’. So that they can get whatever hormones and surgery will give them the illusion of being what they wish. What cruelty!

In my world, there is what you are and there is what you wish to be. So people like Sandy are not ‘biologically female but male in gender’. They are biological females who want to be males. The cruelty is that rather than trying to help them, some people try to aid them in deluding themselves by coming up with such ridiculous classifications. You can wear an estrogen patch and have your genitals removed (and God knows I wish you no harm) but before you permanently disfigure yourself, I recommend that you try other options.

Let me make it clear: I believe you can go about getting surgery to change your sex if you like. You can also bleach your skin and have all your hair removed. But there is no difference between sex and gender. If you invent one, don’t demand that we share it.

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Tracy

I’m Tracy

5 thoughts on “Gender Identity and Rampant Stupidity”

  1. I have a friend who had a sex change operation several years ago. That person was born in gender A and now represents in all aspects both mental and physical gender B. For all I know the change has put that person in balance and peace. I do not see that as disfiguring oneself at all. The person I mentioned had to go through a complex psychological evaluation, before the operation, for what should be the best possible treatment in that particular case. Such is the law here in Finland.

    In my opinion there should be such evaluation for anyone who wants plastic surgery. Most often it is done with such poor reasons like cosmetic enhancement. The people who have these operations claim to make their self esteem better, but I doubt if it actually has any long term effects. I do not know if there is scientific research done how well the cosmetic surgery corresponds with the emotional expectations of people engaged. A some sort of indication of this should be how many people who have had some cosmetic surgery develope a need for more cosmetic surgery. And sometimes they truly are horribly disfigured. However, a sex change operation is hardly just a cosmetic enhancement. It certainly was not that in the case of my friend.

    I agree with you, that what ever the ailment, we should concentrate on treatment that deals with the reason and not just the symptoms. In that sense the person who does not feel comfortable as being themselves should primarly be helped to become comfortable with themselves. However, sometimes it is not that simple. Sometimes it actually is easier to use the scalpel, than to delve into the complex structures of the mind. Should we not trust that the psychological experts of our time are capable of this? If their judgement is not to be trusted in this issue, then whose judgement should we trust?

    Why do you think the black girl would want to be white? That is where the reason of ailment is. Is it not? Could it be, that the surrounding society gives the whiteness some sort of higher positive value, than to the blackness? Is the bleaching of her skin actually an attempt of getting closer to the social norm of the US? I for one have never heard of any white person trying to become more black.

    We humans have this tendency to put everything in boxes. We try to deem what is the norm and what befals outside of the norm. And then deem the latter as “weird”. But is it our place to accept the people who are “weird” as they are, or to tolerate them being “weird”, or perhaps not to tolerate any sort of weirdness? Would it help their situation, if we would not accept them as they are? I think the answer lies in natural ethics. That being “weird” is just OK as long as it does not harm anyone.

    Who has the right to set the gender roles? Why should boys be more interrested in technology than medical care? Majority of doctors in this world are male while majority of nurses is female, but in wich of these two professions do you need more physical strength? I can tell you it is the latter. Yet, women seem to be capable of handling it quite well. The professional orientation of a person should not have anything to do with their reproductive organs. I think that one of the main contributing factors for people not being happy in their born gender is the expectations of the society from these genders.

    You said: “…because believing something that is obviously not true is a serious illness.” This is to me as an atheist a very interresting, but also a completely new view. Since, to me gods are “obviously not true”.

    Sorry about the long answer once again, but your most interresting posts are about complex issues.

    1. I think it is a sad thing that anyone should feel the need to change something so fundamental as this. However, my point is not that it should not be done at all, but that it should not be done lightly. Wanting to be different is a psychological issue and should be treated as such where possible.

      I’m glad your friend is okay.

      By the way, what I have seen is that there tends to be more female doctors and nurses than male when both sexes are given enough freedom to choose. And there tends to be more men in technology related fields. I don’t know why.

      Being different in a strange way (weird) isn’t just being different from the majority, but being different from the vast majority. It’s okay in certain circumstances. There’s nothing wrong with being one of 5 million people interested in a particular career. But there are some cases in which being different is a problem. Wanting to change the color of your skin or gender or suffering from homicidal thoughts or delusion, for example. It’s okay to be different as long as you’re not different in a bad way.

      Since, to me gods are “obviously not true”.

      I believe that anyone who says such a thing can’t have thought about the topic well enough. It is obviously not true that I don’t exist. However, it is not obviously false that there exists an extremely powerful, immaterial being who created the whole world. It is something that intelligent people on both sides have argued about for centuries. To regard it as a simple issue is a mistake.

  2. Hey, it is nice that we are in agreement about the severity of the issue. I also think that it is a change that should not be approached lightly. I doubt if many people do. Gender identity is a big question for all of us. Is it not?

    I am all for freedom of choise. We start to learn gender roles from very early on in childhood and it is perfectly natural. I see no evil if such roles are given by the parents, or the society around, unless these roles mean one gender has to submit to the other, or that what reproductive organs we have decides what gender roles are awailable to us in professional, or family life.

    It is nice that we also agree on wich kind of “weirdness” is condemnable and how this should be determined, if I read you right.

    “An extremely powerfull immaterial being, that created the world” or several of them is a possibility, that can not be ruled out. It is impossible to verify and consequently also impossible to rule out totally how ever unlikely. It is an illogical and unsubstantiated claim made by many different religions, that very much seems to be the result of ignorant conclusions of many ancient cultures. A model of explaining the inexplicable typical to the human mind. Such Platonic demiurge as the Deists would suggest could exist, since we could not have any knowledge of it. However, that kind of a god is not much of a consequense to us humans as a suggestion, in comparrison to the very andropomorphic gods presented by religions.

    Yes, intelligent people of many different religions have come up with a number of claims about the many different gods allmost all mutually exclusive, that to me are obviously not true. And most of them are obvious bogus to you too. Are they not? There is no one religious claim, or explanation of any god, that was mutually accepted by the intelligent men of all times, not even when they had a lot less information about the universe, than a layman -such as myself- has today. Gods themselves have had no word in this conversation, but a great number of men have claimed to speak on behalf all the different gods. Exploitation of peoples religious feelings is a very common political and sociological phenomenon, but no god ever intervened in it, dispite their nature often described as benevolet. Did they? To me the suggestions of gods given by different religions are “obviously not true”, because of the poor cases all those “intelligent people” presenting their cases have given on behalf of their gods. Because what they have to offer is to me obviously from the imagination of men and has nothing to do with any possible cause for the universe, or our world in it.

    There have been for centuries and actually still today there are intelligent people arguing (in the name of their religion), that the world is only few thousand years old. Regardless of the fact, that all of modern science shows us this is not so. If the scientists are right and their holy scriptures are wrong, are their religious claims also false? The mere fact, that someone tries to argue for something does nothing to prove their point, wether she/he was intelligent or not. However, depending on how wild claims they are arguing for with minimal, or no evidence at all, it might lead to questions of their intelligence.

    I agree with you once more, that it is not a simple issue wether there are gods, or not. However, nor are the gender roles and their causes, we are under by the surrounding society and our biology, simple issues at all. For centuries there have been people who are discontent in the gender roles they were put to by the surrounding society as a result of their reproductive organs. For example, in some of the original cultures of the Native Americans some men assumed the traditional roles of women. In modern western society women are increasingly occupying professions traditionally limited to men only as soldiers, political leaders and even priests. Is that “weird”? Only hundred years ago it was totally “weird”. Our cultures are evolving all the time. For greater freedom=tolerance and through higher level of information to better morals, I hope.

    1. Name one incident where a native american man assumed the role of a woman and was considered a woman. A woman performing the tasks “traditionally limited to men” has absolutely nothing to do with biology and the disposition of a man or woman’s physiology. Just more nonsense from people who bow to political correctness.

  3. My thought is, where do we draw the line? If a person claims to be born a pedophile, should we let them get away with their “lifestyle”? Hell no! Gender identification is just another symptom of the degradation of society where sin is propped up as supposed “choice” or “feeling”. Try letting a grown man into a woman’s restroom with my kids, and they will be seeing the business end of my boom stick. This gender identification shit is just bullshit. And this political correctness bullshit needs to stop!

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