Transgenderism: Core Issues.

 

The Following is an answer  to some questions and challenges I received on my own personal blog about who the “facts and the biology” favor in the whole Transgender debate. It is a topic that is of course important because of its many political implications.  The individuals to whom I am replying here are Libertarians and so the issue is addressed from that particular vantage point.

 

 

“I have  seen some objections by a few self identified Libertarians to the ideas expressed in my last piece. I found some of it somewhat  surprising.

The Credo of Libertarianism is  “live and let live”. a person’s decision to make whatever surgical alterations to their body that they choose  to, and to perceive themselves however they wish is a right that everyone  must  recognize within a free society. But to the extent that the Transgender  Movement becomes a true political movement, it literally seeks to add the force of law to the dogma that a person may select their own sex. The basis for it comes through the attempted appropriation of  civil rights concepts.  As we know, modern civil rights law is designed not merely to address the behavior of the government  but also of private individuals.  a political movement that mandates the recognition of  these gender  “transitions” by other private citizens as a civil right, becomes a movement that literally seeks to impose a particular  perspective on to private individuals. Such a policy, I submit, is not remotely consistent with either Libertarian or Conservative values.

The other point of contention was over the more basic question of whether the self selection of one’s sex is possible in the first place.  Now based upon my own study of the movement in question, the closest thing to a  solid logical basis for its general claims concerning sex  involve appealing to  the existence of Androgen disorders, and other types of  syndromes that impair the proper biological development of sex. The argument in a nutshell is that because in the case of these rare disorders sexual differentiation is impaired and does not follow the normal human genetic pattern, the entire dualistic division of the sexes  is bogus

First of all, this argument does not seem to grasp the concept of a disorder.  These are medical disorders, and the language of pathology is used in the medical literature of all of these conditions. In most cases the conditions are also accompanied by other adverse medical symptoms.  The idea that a general concept of human physiology ceases to exist as a consequence of  an irregular medical disorder  is in my estimation quite an odd one. What if this reasoning was extended to other general concepts of human physiology and the irregular disorders associated with them?  We would not know what the regular functioning of the body even looked like.  Now of course the people actually afflicted by these rare sex conditions are essentially never the ones that are the subjects of Transgender discussions. Those discussions  revolve around individuals who are in every biological sense either male or female.

If concepts are rendered entirely meaningless as a result of rare exceptions that  deviate from well established natural processes, then it is not just medical science but all of natural science that is in trouble. In a reply I received on this site, one respondent even attempted to make arguments on the basis of sexual ambiguity in other animal species.  The distinction between warm blooded and cold blooded animals has  proven over time to be a blurry one with some animals manifesting characteristics that do not allow us to neatly place them into either category.  Does this mean that  I can make the decision to classify myself as a cold blooded animal if I want to because “the entire  distinction is no longer valid”? I think we understand that I could not.

Finally there  is the popular appeal to brain chemistry.  I have yet to receive   from a contemporary  Feminist  an explanation of how one reconciles this approach with the notion  that sex roles are largely conditioned by society.  Is  the male  with a preference for stereotypically ” feminine things” and the female with a preference for stereotypically “masculine things”  this way because of neurology? If so,  this is an admission that stereotypically feminine and masculine behavior are hardwired into human sexual nature.   Is transgenderism a desire to associate with  labels that signify absolutely nothing in particular?  Sex is in any case not fundamentally  a neurological condition, it has many other manifestations. The core concept  of sex concerns physical roles within  procreation. a person may be born impaired in this area but the point is that they are typically coded for one of these two specific roles.

 

Again, every individual has the right to live the lifestyle that they choose  and to be respected as a human being regardless of that choice. But this does not require that individuals or laws (binding private citizens) be obligated to recognize the reality  that those individuals choose to embrace. True tolerance is about respecting others when we do not agree, not compelling others to agree with us..”

 

 

 

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