KENIN M. SPIVAK, Guest Commentator
UPDATATED 11:50 AM PT – Thursday, September 15, 2022
The Biden Administration advocates gender mutilation of troubled pre-teens as “gender affirming” care.
The Biden administration is aggressively pursuing a radical left anti-family and anti-religion agenda that includes physical and chemical castration of gender-confused children under the euphemism of “gender affirming care.”
Recent Gallup and Pew polls agree that just 0.6% to 0.7% of all American adults identify as transgender, including pre-op and post-op individuals. About a further one percent of adults identify as “non-binary;” the so-called gender fluid people who have been popularized by television series such as Billionaires (Taylor Mason), and Star Trek: Discovery (Adira). Some non-binary individuals prefer the pronoun “they.”
Polls show a rapid increase in the percentage of children who identify as transgender and non-binary. It is unsurprising that when society pushes a lifestyle as trendy and special, children respond. Peer pressure and social media greatly influence children, including as it relates to smoking, use of alcohol, bulimia, anxiety, depression and even tics. Increased identification as transgender or non-binary is partially the result of greater acceptance, but the trendy factor should not be overlooked. This perspective is supported by data showing that many young people who identify as LGBTQ+ never live as a member of the community, and later identify as straight.
I don’t care if someone is, or chooses to be, LGBTQ+ or any other acronym. My concerns are about government’s choosing a tiny number of transgender boys as winners in athletics, at the expense of girls, compromising free speech and religious freedoms of those who don’t want to say “they,” or compromising our security and safety by ignoring biological sex. Most particularly, I am concerned when the administration proselytizes pre-pubescent children to transition through hormone therapy and surgery. That is child abuse. Further, when the government removes parents from the decision-making process, that makes children wards of the State. That is Marxism. It also violates the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. As a unanimous Supreme Court explained in Pierce v. Society of Sisters (1925), the State may not “unreasonably interfere with the liberty of parents and guardians to direct the upbringing and education of children under their control,” adding “The child is not the mere creature of the state.”
Joe Biden has made sexual reassignment surgery for children, regardless of parental wishes, and shoehorning biological boys into girls’ bathrooms and sports, priorities. On his first day in office, he issued an executive order intended to prohibit public schools from limiting the discussion of alternative lifestyles. He considers anything else “an attack on gay people.” Polls show parents disagree, particularly as to young children.
In his State of the Union address this year, Biden assured younger transgenders that he has their “backs” so they can reach their “God-given” potentials. Shortly after, the administration announced that it would cease funding lunches in schools that don’t let trans students use the bathrooms, locker rooms, showers and sleeping quarters of their choosing. Then, to show its commitment to transgender and non-binary people, the administration decided passport applicants could select any gender, or an “X” gender, even if their selection differs from their citizenship or other identity documents, thereby defeating the purpose of secure identification.
On June 15, the Administration issued another executive order to promote transition procedures for children, including puberty blockers, other hormone treatments, and surgery. The order seeks to end therapy aimed at dissuading children from transitioning, and supports a child’s right to transition without parental consent. In lockstep, the Education Department then proposed a rule to modify the interpretation of Title IX to permit all boys who identify as girls, whether pre- or post-op, to compete in girls’ sports, and to eliminate any requirement that schools notify parents of a child’s gender choice. To stifle debate about transgenderism, mandate pronouns like “they,” and support misogynistic jargon like “menstruating persons” and “birthing persons,” the order also prohibits “offensive speech” and “sex stereotypes.” Numerous polls (see here and here) show that Americans oppose allowing transgender males to compete in female sports, particularly in grades K-12.
The research shows that 80% to 95% of children with gender dysphoria who are given time to process their internal conflicts without puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones will naturally embrace their biological sex. Conversely, the suicide rate among those who have had had sex reassignment surgery is as much as 19 times greater than the rate for society as a whole. There is no evidence that sexual re-assignment improves mental health.
Yet, under Biden administration policies, children who often change their minds about what they want to be, whose brains, logic and emotions are not fully formed, lack the legal right to enter into contracts, need parental approval for a school trip, and can’t vote, drive or drink, nonetheless have the right to chop off body parts, and make irrevocable life decisions that they have no capacity to make. Their parents will have no say in this State-ordered child abuse.
Britain’s only transgender-youth clinic closed after an independent review concluded that it was “not a safe or viable long-term option” and that patients were “at considerable risk” from clinicians’ “unquestioning affirmative approach.” By contrast, as National Review reported, in the United States, gender clinics are becoming more numerous and brazen. The Human Rights Campaign lists more than 40 clinical care programs for transgender youth on its website, compared to one in 2007. Advocates of reassignment are publishing junk science that obscures the psychological motivations and consequences of transitioning.
As a society, we have decided that certain rights are more important that others, including the rights of free speech and religion embodied in the First Amendment, both of which are violated by the administration’s orders. We also have decided that protecting children is a core value.
It is inexplicable that progressives believe that delivering the ability to defeat nearly all women and girls in athletic events to roughly 0.6% of men and boys is an appropriate use of federal power.
But, the impropriety of gutting the purpose of girls’ Title IX sports is inconsequential compared to the life-altering and life-threatening mutilation underway at Biden’s direction. There should be universal agreement that no child, and particularly no pre-pubescent child, should be mutilated by surgical or medical means absent an imminent risk of death, end even then, only when there are no less invasive alternatives. Each child should have the right to complete his mental, emotional, and physical development and to learn who he or she is, before being permitted, as an adult, to pursue a path that will deviate from his or her DNA, and most likely subject him or her to a life of physical and mental torture.
This is not a straight or cisgender perspective about protecting children, it is a human perspective, and that is why, increasingly, post-op transgenders are coming forward to agree.
We thought the mutilation of adolescent sex organs was a barbaric practice limited to antiquity and third world countries. Now it is a barbaric practice sanctioned and promoted by the President of the United States, and radical left clinics, hospitals and doctors to be inflicted on American children. It is incumbent on an enlightened, liberal, people to immediately end this savagery, including its modern cognates of puberty blockers and other hormone regimens. We can respect the right of adults to control their bodies and decide what is in their best interests. However, those who encourage, support or practice such cruelty on children must be removed from any position that allows them to continue to do so.
Kenin M. Spivak is founder and chairman of SMI Group LLC, an international consulting firm and investment bank. He is the author of fiction and non-fiction books and has served as a director and C-suite officer of public and private companies. Spivak has written for National Review, The American Mind, the National Association of Scholars, and Huffington Post. He was chairman of the Editorial Board of the Knowledge Exchange Business Encyclopedia, and a long-time director of the RAND Corporation Center for Corporate Ethics and Governance. He received his A.B., M.B.A., and J.D. from Columbia University