TERFs, gender, sex, etc.

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Comments

  • Should the court, however, accept biased submissions? or submissions with an agenda?

    According to the coverage I read of this case, early on, the evidence from any charities advocating for transgender rights was thrown out and not heard, while the anti-transgender group, Transgender Trend* were invited to submit evidence - Pink News news story link. Which makes me wonder what other evidence was found inadmissable.

    The lawyer for the plaintiff, Paul Conrathe has an agenda - according to yesterday's papers the next thing he and Kiera Bell are planning to challenge is discussion of transgender issues on social media - Observer article from 6 December 2020. Jolyon Maugham of the Good Law project commented on this lawyer in the context of this case on Twitter here (link) and the similarities of Conrathe's challenges to abortion in various cases. Another Twitter user has listed the number of challenges to transgender that Paul Conrathe is involved in here - link to thread reader - and according to that thread, Conrathe is linked to the far right hate group Alliance Defending Freedom.

    The Tavistock / GIDS have shot themselves in both feet by not evidencing and publishing their work. If they'd been able to quantify the number of young people diagnosed with gender dysphoria in the UK and to then be able to say x% of those young people are referred to GIDS, y% of those young people wait out the maybe four years to an appointment, and z% of those young people are given puberty blockers. From the stories in the press, the service is chaotic and other charities are getting involved so many of the young people on the waiting list are prescribed puberty blockers before reaching GIDS - link to i-news story from August 2020. However, this case seems to part of a concerted attack to shut down the service and all transgender treatment entirely. The proscription on treatment with puberty blockers under the age of 16 is effectively limiting treatments available.

    * link to story in Schools Week criticising Transgender Trend materials
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    Should the court, however, accept biased submissions? or submissions with an agenda?

    Each party's submission would seek to put that party's case in the best possible light. A court would read each and the oral arguments presented and then pick though the elements of each and how those relate to any previous cases in the are. But apart from those pretty obvious points, I don't know how to interpret your statement.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    To add that at some point, a court will say that it largely accepts the submissions of Party A rather than of B, because those of A are more in accordance with previously decided cases, or any relevant statute.
  • It seems incredible that treatment options that were available on one day, are suddenly not available the next day. Of course, assorted transphobic groups are thrilled, and no doubt are pressing for more. But how can the treatment of transgender youth be flipped like this? Has there been any assessment of what effect this will have on people suddenly deprived of treatment? It seems scandalous to me, but the UK media are largely transphobic, so won't view this with sympathy. Ditto the government. No wonder trans people are talking of being erased. I dread to think of the damage this will do.
  • I have heard of kids and their parents actually sitting in a hospital waiting room, to see if their next blockers are permitted, because of the ruling. What an absolute disgrace, to treat people's health like this.
  • I have heard of kids and their parents actually sitting in a hospital waiting room, to see if their next blockers are permitted, because of the ruling. What an absolute disgrace, to treat people's health like this.

    Health care by politician. Just like the United States.
  • Curiosity killedCuriosity killed Shipmate
    edited December 2020
    Gee D wrote: »
    Should the court, however, accept biased submissions? or submissions with an agenda?

    Each party's submission would seek to put that party's case in the best possible light. A court would read each and the oral arguments presented and then pick though the elements of each and how those relate to any previous cases in the are. But apart from those pretty obvious points, I don't know how to interpret your statement.

    I was querying the ruling of some charities inadmissable, specifically those charities asked to give evidence for GIDS/the Tavistock by the defence, i.e. Stonewall and Mermaids*, which are known to support transgender people. While at the same time an anti-transgender charity, Transgender Trend, was invited to give evidence. That suggests to me that the evidence heard was biased towards anti-transgender organisations.

    * I have huge reservations about Mermaids, but not as many as I have about Transgender Trend

  • Gee D wrote: »
    Should the court, however, accept biased submissions? or submissions with an agenda?

    Each party's submission would seek to put that party's case in the best possible light. A court would read each and the oral arguments presented and then pick though the elements of each and how those relate to any previous cases in the are. But apart from those pretty obvious points, I don't know how to interpret your statement.

    I was querying the ruling of some charities inadmissable, specifically those charities asked to give evidence for GIDS/the Tavistock by the defence, i.e. Stonewall and Mermaids*, which are known to support transgender people. While at the same time an anti-transgender charity, Transgender Trend, was invited to give evidence. That suggests to me that the evidence heard was biased towards anti-transgender organisations.

    * I have huge reservations about Mermaids, but not as many as I have about Transgender Trend

    There are many things that puzzle me about this case, which I'm sure has something to do with the fact that this area of law isn't my specialty and I don't practise in the UK. I have no idea whether the Court received evidence from TT, or just submissions on the law, or whether UK adminstrative law procedure is such that TT could have filed something like a position paper that introduced evidence and made submissions at the same time (e.g., something along the lines of "we don't think this should be allowed to happen, for the reasons given in the attached article by Paul McHugh").

    Bias isn't really a live issue when it comes to submissions of counsel - the expectation of course is that counsel will make the best pitch possible for their client. But in my world there is a hard line between evidence and submissions - witnesses give evidence, and counsel makes submissions, and counsel cannot give evidence in their submissions. Likewise counsel's submissions have to be based on the evidence that is before the Court.

    Bias is very much an issue when it comes whether a court should accept a witness's evidence. If the accused is Jewish, and it comes out in evidence that the Crown's star witness is a virulent anti-semite, the jury is entitled to take that into account in deciding whether they believe that witnesses's evidence.

    In Canada, for expert opinion evidence, the question of bias is relevant to whether the evidence will even be admitted in the first place. (One of the reasons for this is that number of innocent people were wrongfully convicted of crimes against their children some years ago based on the evidence of a biased forensic pathologist.) If an expert witness is going to qualified (i.e., allowed to testify), the Court has to be satisfied that the proposed expert has expertise, that the proposed evidence is within the scope of this expertise, and that the proposed expert understands that their duty is to assist the Court in understanding something where it requires the assistance of an expert rather than to simply serve as a spokesperson for a position or a "hired gun" for one side of the dispute. On that standard I don't see how anyone could qualify a spokeperson for TT as an expert witness. But again, I don't know enough about UK administrative law procedure to know whether that test would apply or whether the rules of evidence are more relaxed. The issue with relaxing the test of course is the risk of the court relying on evidence that is of such poor quality that it shouldn't have been admitted in the first place.

  • I've found some of the answers to the questions in a Google Drive screen capture of the application for judicial review (link) - which says that Stonewall and Mermaids applied to be interveners - third parties allowed to make submissions to the case - but were ruled not to be offering additional evidence.

    The status of Transgender Trend was of also of an intervener- from the judgement paragraphs 103 - 104: pdf link:
    The third Intervener is Transgender Trend Ltd., an organisation that provides evidence based information and resources for parents and schools concerning children with GD. Davies-Arai is the director of that organisation and she has filed a witness statement in these proceedings. She set out concerns about the lack of evidence as to the impacts and effectiveness of PBs and in relation to which patients it is most likely to help. Much of her evidence focused on the increase of referrals to GIDS of teenage natal girls and the cultural factors, including material on the internet and social media, which may play a part in this. She said that GIDS does not offer young people with GD a range of ways to interpret their experience, and the GIDS pathway offers a minimal challenge to the beliefs and ideas of the young person.

    (The other two interveners were interested hospitals).

    (There is Dutch research on the increase in numbers in natal girls, linked earlier.)
  • Thanks - I haven’t tried to make my way through the whole decision yet. I do wonder what her qualifications for giving evidence would be.

    I don’t know why the Court ruled that the other organizations were not allowed to present evidence though I find often courts are less likely to grant status when an intervener is supporting the government’s position - the sense is that the government is able to represent itself just fine without others’ help. Or possibly they felt that their positions were already supported by evidence filed by the other parties whereas TT was the only party representing its position.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate

    I was querying the ruling of some charities inadmissable, specifically those charities asked to give evidence for GIDS/the Tavistock by the defence, i.e. Stonewall and Mermaids*, which are known to support transgender people. While at the same time an anti-transgender charity, Transgender Trend, was invited to give evidence. That suggests to me that the evidence heard was biased towards anti-transgender organisations.

    * I have huge reservations about Mermaids, but not as many as I have about Transgender Trend

    The reported case was not one which would normally hear and receive evidence. It was a case of judicial review of the decision of the board below - had it correctly applied the law to the evidence before it. In other words, largely an appeal.


    It seems incredible that treatment options that were available on one day, are suddenly not available the next day. Of course, assorted transphobic groups are thrilled, and no doubt are pressing for more. But how can the treatment of transgender youth be flipped like this? Has there been any assessment of what effect this will have on people suddenly deprived of treatment? It seems scandalous to me, but the UK media are largely transphobic, so won't view this with sympathy. Ditto the government. No wonder trans people are talking of being erased. I dread to think of the damage this will do.

    ISTM that the real answer to what you're putting forward is political action, not through the medium of a case such as the one starting this discussion. The court has set out what it understands the legal position to be presently. Practices on judicial review in England (don't know about other constituents of the UK) and here have been diverging for the last half century, but there may be provision for further appeal. If there is no further appeal, or an appellate court does not overturn this decision, it's back to the politicians - and there's no harm done in starting that process now.
  • But this judgment is already a political one, that is, a conservative one.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    Many judgments have consequences in the body politic, but the judgment remains legal.
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    More dispatches from the North - Rape Crisis Scotland (the national office that runs our rape crisis centres) was forced by harassment and abuse to go off Twitter for employee safety due to being targeted by an anti-trans 'gender critical' mob.

    What happened is that the anti-trans zealots started circulating disinformation about the new Forensic Medical Services (Victims of Sexual Offences) (Scotland) Bill. The bill allows people who have been raped or sexually assaulted to get a forensic examination without having to report and go through the police - so a very good thing. An anti-trans politician - Labour MSP Johann Lamont put forward an amendment to the bill changing 'gender' to 'sex'. This amendment was canvassed for on transphobic grounds (and Lamont also took Rape Crisis's name in vain, though they had explicitly opposed what she was doing). The scaremongering online was so effective that Rape Crisis Scotland got targeted and brigaded for pointing it out and explaining the real situation.

    The intent of all this seems to have been to misgender trans women doctors and paint them as a potential menace (there are no trans women working as forensic medical examiners in Scotland - but why let that get in the way of a good witch-hunt?). Ironically the amendment in question was meaningless in law except as an anti-trans dogwhistle because someone who has a Gender Recognition Certificate does count as that sex in law.

    Every political party in Scotland barring the Lib Dems and the Greens (and one very principled Labour MSP Monica Lennon) voted for this anti-trans dogwhistle. It was Monica Lennon who stood up in parliament and explained how the amendment was based on transphobia. The SNP and Labour otherwise voted with the Tories on this.

    When is the penny going to drop about these folk calling themselves 'feminists'? Feminists don't go around attacking Rape Crisis Centres, but reactionary populists who've got high on disinformation do.
  • I discovered today that a friend of mine, a self-described "butch lesbian", frequently gets harassed in public toilets by anti-trans women accusing her of being a man. :rage: She's made of tough stuff (crofter) and is more than capable of telling them to GTF but still... some people.
  • Louise wrote: »
    The bill allows people who have been raped or sexually assaulted to get a forensic examination without having to report and go through the police - so a very good thing. An anti-trans politician - Labour MSP Johann Lamont put forward an amendment to the bill changing 'gender' to 'sex'.

    I was deeply confused as to why the bill needed the word "gender" or "sex" in it anywhere, and I think I chased far enough down a rabbit-hole of links to discover that this refers to the right of a rape victim to request a medical examiner of a particular gender to perform an intimate examination.

    Mr Lamont wishes to change this to "a particular sex". You point out that this doesn't actually do anything, because for example trans women with a GRC count as "female sex" everywhere where the term "sex" is used in law, and that this is just anti-trans bluster.

    To the extent that Mr Lamont wishes to empower cis-female rape victims to request a cis-female examiner perform the examination, this seems to be a close cousin of the changing room argument.

    I don't really know how to address the discussion, because I don't really understand all the reasons people might have to prefer a particular examiner. "I was raped by a man, so I don't want some strange man examining my bits, because it will remind me of the trauma" sounds like a perfectly reasonable request. "I'm a woman, and I want to be examined by another woman for privacy / modesty reasons" sounds reasonable. But what about "I don't want a person with a deep voice / particular regional accent / skin tone / some other feature that reminds me of my attacker". Or, as I've heard in the context of women choosing an OB/GYN, "I want whoever's rummaging about down there to have the same bits, so they understand what it's like".

    I'm a man. I have no particular preference for the sex/gender of the person who, for example, performs a prostate exam. I don't think that having the same anatomy is an important feature. But I can't say that a person who does think it important is necessarily wrong.
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    Johann Lamont is female - it's an alternative spelling in Scotland for Joanne.

    Rape Crisis Centres Scotland's chief exec addressed this here:

    https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/forensic-medical-services-bill-important-step-forward-treatment-rape-survivors-scotland-gender-row-misses-point-sandy-brindley-3061543

    What Ms Lamont did, did nothing to help women get more female examiners or more choice of who to be examined by, and just for pointing this out, Rape Crisis were vitriolically attacked online by anti-trans zealots to the point where they felt their staff safety was being compromised.

    This was a dog whistle which did nothing to help women. The frontline experts in helping survivors of sexual violence wanted nothing to do with it for good reasons and were targeted as a result.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    I'm a man. I have no particular preference for the sex/gender of the person who, for example, performs a prostate exam. I don't think that having the same anatomy is an important feature. But I can't say that a person who does think it important is necessarily wrong.

    I had a very necessary prostatectomy in the days before keyhole surgery was available. The principal surgeon was a man, but his assistants included a woman, and the anaesthetist was also a woman. That's just how it was and none of it bothered me.
  • Words fail me @Louise .

    Rape Crisis Centres are specialists in their field. I wish they could be appreciated properly
  • Many people absorbing Biden's executive order on discrimination over gender, sexuality, etc. All I've seen are some anti-trans people on Mumsnet wailing and moaning, and saying that women are being abolished. Early days, however.
  • I didn't realize that the Supreme Court had anticipated this in the Bostock vs Clayton county ruling. This meant that LGBTQ employees could not be discriminated against, in line with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act . I'm still staggered that a right wing court produced this, but presumably Biden has reinforced this.
  • CrœsosCrœsos Shipmate
    I didn't realize that the Supreme Court had anticipated this in the Bostock vs Clayton county ruling. This meant that LGBTQ employees could not be discriminated against, in line with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act . I'm still staggered that a right wing court produced this, but presumably Biden has reinforced this.

    Well, the Supreme Court's four liberals (Ginsberg, Breyer, Sotomayor, Kagan) plus Gorsuch and Roberts produced it. The court's most conservative members (Alito, Kavanaugh, Thomas) were in dissent.
  • Great ructions over the demotion of Joanna Cherry from the Scottish front bench at Westminster. There are many explanations for this, e.g., Cherry is a Salmond ally, but also she has been to the fore in anti-trans propaganda, or "gender critical". I don't really get the intricacies of SNP politics, but Sturgeon recently released a video criticizing terfs so adding 2 and 2 gets you to here. Foul rumour has it that Cherry wants Nic's job.
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    edited February 3
    She almost certainly does want to be leader but is also part of the pro Alex Salmond faction. She has backed all sorts of anti-trans campaigners online - some of them very very worrying in other ways too - and her latest was supporting one who was suspended from twitter for [redacted for safety - you'll need to look it up yourselves] She often invokes m'learned friends and is a QC so I won't add the other things I've seen. [edited for safety]

    The faction who lionise her seem to do lot of attacking and demonising young SNP campaigners on social media and off, especially young LGBT folk, and the backing of the person suspended from Twitter [for reasons you would need to look up] was the last straw, so young activists (and older) were resigning and leaving in numbers. This seems to have led to the leadership finally coming off the fence and starting to resist her.

    [edited to be on the safe side - L]
  • Just reading some comments by gender critical feminists, and it's remarkable how many such feminists take an anatomical view of persons. Thus, if you have a penis, you are a man.

    It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements. Similarly, the explosion of gender non-conformity stems from the notion of identity, not anatomy. Hence, I don't want you to measure me, or anatomize me. My identity is my affair, or my experience. I suppose this represents a clash between very different post-Enlightenment views of humans. As Sartre almost said, do I exist for myself, or as another, for others? Is my experience the core of my being, or being measured by another? You can see why it stirs strong emotions.
  • It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements.

    Has anyone ever thought there was a correspondence between anatomical measurements and sexuality?

    There were "measurements" of sexuality that looked at arousal responses to various kinds of porn, though, weren't there? So then, if you're a man, then the degree that you respond to naked men vs naked women is a measure of how gay you are.

  • It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements.

    Has anyone ever thought there was a correspondence between anatomical measurements and sexuality?

    There were "measurements" of sexuality that looked at arousal responses to various kinds of porn, though, weren't there? So then, if you're a man, then the degree that you respond to naked men vs naked women is a measure of how gay you are.

    This because studies need to find something measurable. It doesn't follow that that's at all how people think of their sexuality, or that it exactly corresponds to self-reported sexuality (or are those the same thing?). In the medical and epidemiological community during the height of the AIDS crisis, the word "gay" was deprecated in favor of "Men who have Sex with Men" (MSM), because that's what mattered for the transmission of the disease: you don't have to think of yo urself as gay to have sex with men, and what you think of yourself is irrelevant if you do, as far as tracking and fighting AIDS is concerned.
  • It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements.

    Has anyone ever thought there was a correspondence between anatomical measurements and sexuality?

    There were "measurements" of sexuality that looked at arousal responses to various kinds of porn, though, weren't there? So then, if you're a man, then the degree that you respond to naked men vs naked women is a measure of how gay you are.

    Yes, I think such tests were common for a while, and are possibly still used, for example, to test for paedophilia. I'm not sure it's an advisable method for adolescents to establish if they're gay or straight.

    But it's an example of a mechanical and external approach to sex/ gender. Your penis showed a 30 degree elevation, when shown a photo of the sergeant, but only 15 degrees when shown a picture of the dinner lady.
  • It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements.

    Has anyone ever thought there was a correspondence between anatomical measurements and sexuality?

    There were people when I was at school who purported to believe that the direction the penis pointed while at rest was indicative, or which testicle hung lower than the other.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    It's a bizarre largely British disease.
    It strikes me that the shift in the last few decades has been towards a more subjective view of persons. Thus, how do you know if someone is gay? You don't do anatomical measurements.

    Has anyone ever thought there was a correspondence between anatomical measurements and sexuality?

    There were people when I was at school who purported to believe that the direction the penis pointed while at rest was indicative, or which testicle hung lower than the other.

    When I was at school it was whether or not you fancied Kate Bush.
  • Steve LangtonSteve Langton Suspended
    edited September 12

    [Transphobic post - Louise Epiphanies Host]
    On another forum recently I was very firmly told by another participant that "God makes people transgender". Wondering what kind of God he believes in who would do that to people??
  • PomonaPomona Shipmate
    edited September 12
    (quote from transphobic post L- Epiphanies Host)

    On another forum recently I was very firmly told by another participant that "God makes people transgender". Wondering what kind of God he believes in who would do that to people??


    I'm not sure what you mean by this. People who say this don't believe that being transgender is a bad thing, so what do you mean by 'would do that to people'? The existence of anti-trans people doesn't mean that being trans is bad.
  • RuthRuth Shipmate
    edited September 12
    (quote from transphobic post - L Epiphanies Host)
    .
    On another forum recently I was very firmly told by another participant that "God makes people transgender". Wondering what kind of God he believes in who would do that to people??

    A god that expects the rest of us to behave better than we do.
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    edited September 12
    Hosting
    Steve Langton, Commandment 1 applies on this more closely hosted board. This applies to the -phobias like transphobia as well as the isms. If people want to consider the question of God making trans people it won't be done on transphobic terms.

    Thanks
    Louise
    Epiphanies Host

    Hosting off
  • RuthRuth Shipmate
    ::facepalm:: at myself for quoting that!
  • To the extent that God made people (whatever you think that means), He made all the people. Unless you're proposing a cabal of rival creators, each rushing around making particular kinds of people, then the same God made all of us - whether we're gay, straight, black, white, cis, trans, or whatever else we are.
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    edited September 13
    orfeo wrote: »
    There's actually evidence for a positive correlation of virtually any human characteristic with any other human characteristic.
    '

    Um, no. This is nonsense unless you provide something to back it up.

    Uh yes. And you don't get to call things nonsense just because you don't know about it. You can do your own courses in psychology, morphology, genetics, general science education too. You may start with wikipedia if you want: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_correlation , gene environment interaction, behavioural genetics. Randomly, this is about human characteristics and online behaviour: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167404817302523

    Ha. I never saw this.

    Though it's fun finding out that only a couple of posts later, someone pointed out that your logic was wrong (and not your psychology, morphology, genetics or general science education... I have a science degree by the way).
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    And as to the more recent revival of this thread... if you believe in God, then you believe God made everybody. With all their good points and flaws.

    I mean, God seems to have had a fair hand in me being tremendously myopic. Though a Winnie-the-Pooh character lamp might also have played a part. So why does God create short-sighted people? Why does God create people with one leg shorter than the other? Why does God create children who are allergic to common foods?

    Singling one way that God makes people for special comment doesn't seem particularly insightful.
  • orfeo wrote: »

    .... Singling one way that God makes people for special comment doesn't seem particularly insightful.

    So you agree with me that the person claiming God 'made' trans people was not particularly insightful...? The ignoring of these other aspects like your myopia and my autism was one of the major reasons I saw that comment as decidedly ... er ... lacking....
  • Let me see if I've got this right. You post something that is typical of the rubbish that is regularly posted to attack trans-people, and you find that decidedly lacking? Without even indicating that you disagreed with what you posted.

    You've been away for a while. It looks like you really, really need to refresh your understanding of the guidelines for Epiphanies, as well as the 10Cs more generally. Because that's just not on.

    Alan
    Ship of Fools Admin
  • PomonaPomona Shipmate
    orfeo wrote: »

    .... Singling one way that God makes people for special comment doesn't seem particularly insightful.

    So you agree with me that the person claiming God 'made' trans people was not particularly insightful...? The ignoring of these other aspects like your myopia and my autism was one of the major reasons I saw that comment as decidedly ... er ... lacking....

    All the autistic people I know would very much see their autism as a positive thing, and definitely not comparable to myopia. Being trans is also not comparable to that. Why would it be, and why wouldn't God make someone trans? It would be helpful if you had a point to discuss.
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    edited September 15
    orfeo wrote: »

    .... Singling one way that God makes people for special comment doesn't seem particularly insightful.

    So you agree with me that the person claiming God 'made' trans people was not particularly insightful...? The ignoring of these other aspects like your myopia and my autism was one of the major reasons I saw that comment as decidedly ... er ... lacking....

    No, I do not agree with you at all. Because what is not particularly insightful is you trying to take that person's statement that no doubt occurred in a context and make a big deal out of it over here.

    Your current argument, and attempt to co-opt me in it, is no different in kind from taking Black Lives Matter and complaining that All Lives Matter.
  • Steve LangtonSteve Langton Suspended
    edited September 15
    [arguing with admin outside Styx. - awaiting admin response - can people please leave till an admin can get here? Thanks! L Epiphanies Host]

    According to the guidelines, "This forum is for serious discussion of these topics and will be allowed to reflect all widely held views, even if they are considered offensive by some."

    Alan Cresswell, please re-read what I have written and try to get it right. I am not disagreeing with myself - I am disagreeing with the person I originally quoted, and with the glibness with which he says 'God made people...' a certain way while essentially ignoring the implications for that of questions like those orfeo asked in his post. And BTW I think I'm largely agreeing with orfeo at least that there are questions there that need asking and should not be glibly ignored.

    Pomona - I have to assume that you are rather young and have no real experience of how it was to live with autism before it became as widely known as it is now; yes once autistic people and lots of the general public understand what is going on it can be lived with and often turned to positive advantage, but it's not as simple as you suggest. For fifty years when it was not widely understood I had significant problems, and for many people more severely affected than myself it is still a real disability. It is in fact quite akin to myopia, giving the autistic person problems of perception in some important areas. In dealing with autism realism is more useful than politically correct attitudes.

    I will admit to having deliberately 'flown a kite' to see how people reacted - having seen the reactions I'm composing a somewhat more detailed explanation of what I'm thinking and should be back with it in a day or so; right now is the busy bit of my week and I'm waiting till I can give it proper attention.
  • @Steve Langton that post that's been hidden contains several aspects contrary to the guidelines here. See my post on the relevant thread in the Styx and respond there.

    Alan
    Ship of Fools Admin
  • Pomona wrote: »
    All the autistic people I know would very much see their autism as a positive thing, and definitely not comparable to myopia. Being trans is also not comparable to that. Why would it be, and why wouldn't God make someone trans? It would be helpful if you had a point to discuss.

    I know some autistic people who don't see autism as an entirely positive thing, if that helps? But I don't think it actually matters. I don't think it matters whether someone sees being autistic as entirely positive or not, or whether they see being trans as entirely positive or not. They are whoever is is that they are, and they are a child of God, made in His image. Whether they're completely happy with whatever they were given, or would rather be something else isn't relevant.
  • Pomona wrote: »
    Being trans is also not comparable to that. Why would it be, and why wouldn't God make someone trans? It would be helpful if you had a point to discuss.

    I have often heard trans people refer to themselves as "a man born in a woman's body" or some similar language, and of course many trans people undergo significant surgery to make their body look more like how they expect it to look.

    I don't really want to put you on the spot, so feel free to ignore this if you don't want to answer - but would it be fair to say that a trans man in general (and perhaps you in particular if you want to answer) would have preferred to have been born with a cis male body?
  • PomonaPomona Shipmate
    Sorry, didn't want to answer in case there was another admin ruling being awaited. I'm in the middle of moving house during an ME/CFS flare, so may have to get back to you on that @Leorning Cniht . But a short answer would be similar to what @Gwai said about autism - every individual experience is different. The media has latched onto the 'born in the wrong body' narrative as the 'correct' one but it's just more that it's a simple and linear narrative. Many jurisdictions require some form of hormone treatment and/or surgery in order to change legal gender (though fortunately the UK is not one of them, though you need a diagnosis of gender dysphoria from a gender clinician - which can take years to get). It's not exactly a choice in that case. Some places even require full genital surgery including sterilisation in order to change gender legally - until recently this was the case in most of Europe. In the UK where medical treatment is not required for this, it is easier (but still too difficult) for trans people to get the option that's right for them, especially nonbinary people who often do not want to look particularly masculine or feminine but maybe just want a low level of HRT and minor surgery. Ultimately it depends on the level of body dysphoria (caused by body parts/the body as it is) vs the level of social dysphoria (caused by the disconnect between your gender and the gender others view you as). Not all trans people have a problem with the body parts they have and unlike what the common jokes about trans people suggest, it's really common to not feel the need to have genital surgery. Sometimes surgery is more about cis people's discomfort with trans bodies.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    edited September 17
    In the light of @Steve Langton 's clarification of his view, albeit in the Styx "Is Epiphanies Underused?" thread, I would like to observe that:

    a) Christian belief is that all people are created by God;
    b) Trans people exist;

    Therefore:

    c) Christian belief is that God creates Trans people.

    To rebut this, one must posit that either a, or b, or both are false.

    Which one are you claiming is false, @Steve Langton?
  • PomonaPomona Shipmate
    Also re @Steve Langton 's comments, it is only ever cis people who use the term 'sex change' and trans people simply do not see hormones and surgery as some kind of switch that changes their sex or gender. Most trans people would say that they were always their gender, it was others who assigned them as a different gender. I would say that 'sex change' and other terminology that places surgery (typically genital surgery) as being at the heart of what it means to be trans are very inaccurate and borderline offensive - I'm aware that they are often meant innocently, but it's a fundamental misunderstanding of what being trans means that particularly harms trans women and directly plays into the 'you're not a real woman unless you have a vagina' trope.

    Trans people themselves usually just talk about individual surgeries, often talking about 'top surgery' and 'lower surgery'. Remember that most trans people don't really want to talk about the state of their genitals in public, or with a stranger. Don't ask people if they've had 'the surgery' - for a start, which surgery??
  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host, Epiphanies Host
    Pomona wrote: »
    Also re @Steve Langton 's comments, it is only ever cis people who use the term 'sex change' and trans people simply do not see hormones and surgery as some kind of switch that changes their sex or gender. Most trans people would say that they were always their gender, it was others who assigned them as a different gender. I would say that 'sex change' and other terminology that places surgery (typically genital surgery) as being at the heart of what it means to be trans are very inaccurate and borderline offensive - I'm aware that they are often meant innocently, but it's a fundamental misunderstanding of what being trans means that particularly harms trans women and directly plays into the 'you're not a real woman unless you have a vagina' trope.

    Trans people themselves usually just talk about individual surgeries, often talking about 'top surgery' and 'lower surgery'. Remember that most trans people don't really want to talk about the state of their genitals in public, or with a stranger. Don't ask people if they've had 'the surgery' - for a start, which surgery??

    This. A trans friend of mine in Cape Town posted on social media last week that for them to be transgender is to feel the need to move across the socially imposed boundaries of your assigned sex at birth. Trans agency is the ability to change what your body means to yourself and others
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