It’s amazing that Jewish space lasers and Satan-worshipping, child-abusing Democratic cabals and 9/11 hoax drivel could strike a person as more believable than gender fluidity.
But here we are, with U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, promoter of all of the above, doubling down on transphobia. The occasion? The House of Representatives voting to pass the Equality Act, which would ban discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation.
As you’ve likely read, U.S. Rep. Marie Newman, a Democrat from LaGrange, gave a speech on the House floor in favor of the Equality Act. In the speech, she mentioned her transgender daughter.
“The right time to pass this act was decades ago. The second best time is right now,” Newman said. “I’m voting yes on the Equality Act for Evie Newman, my daughter and the strongest, bravest person I know.”
Taylor Greene, a Georgia Republican, gave a speech opposing the bill. That prompted Newman to place a transgender rights flag outside of her Washington, D.C., office, which happens to be across the hall from Taylor Greene’s office. Newman tweeted a video of herself planting the flag, saying she put it there so Taylor Greene “can look at it every time she opens her door.”
Taylor Greene then hung a sign outside her office for Newman to see. It reads: There are TWO genders: MALE & FEMALE. “Trust The Science!”
Then Taylor Greene sent a tweet referencing Newman’s daughter: “As mothers, we all love and support our children. But your biological son does NOT belong in my daughters’ bathrooms, locker rooms, and sports teams.”
In Taylor Greene’s defense, she has admitted to falling for baloney in the past.
In early February, when she was (unsuccessfully) trying to hang onto her congressional committee spots, she famously told her House colleagues, “I was allowed to believe things that weren’t true.”
Unfortunately, believing things that aren’t true takes on an added layer of risk when you’ve been elected to the United States Congress — the risk being that you stake out positions based on lies and do real damage to your country and your constituents in the process.
Which is why I’m choosing to take Taylor Greene’s “Trust The Science!” sign as an invitation to share with her the science. So she can trust it.
In 2019, Scientific American ran a piece headlined, “Stop Using Phony Science to Justify Transphobia: Actual research shows that sex is anything but binary.”
“The popular belief that your sex arises only from your chromosomal makeup is wrong,” author Simóne D Sun,a doctoral candidate in the Tsien Lab at New York University’s Neuroscience Institute, writes. “The truth is, your biological sex isn’t carved in stone, but a living system with the potential for change.”
Sun spells out a half century of empirical research, along with the roles of complex genetic signals, hormones, chromosomes and a small group of cells called the bipotential primordium.
“Defining a person’s sex identity using decontextualized ‘facts’ is unscientific and dehumanizing,” Sun writes. “The trans experience provides essential insights into the science of sex and scientifically demonstrates that uncommon and atypical phenomena are vital for a successful living system. Even the scientific endeavor itself is quantifiably better when it is more inclusive and diverse.”
Cleveland Clinic, an internationally renowned medical center, offers a helpful primer on its site, headlined: “Research on the Transgender Brain: What You Should Know.”
“Though differences in brain structure and function are important markers for gender determination, it isn’t always as simple as male or female,” the primer reads. “This is consistent with the growing understanding that gender exists on a spectrum, with people identifying not only as male or female but also as genderqueer, genderfluid or nonbinary.”
The Mayo Clinic’s “transgender facts” site is also, as advertised, filled with facts.
In 2018, the American Academy of Pediatrics created a policy statement for parents and clinicians caring for transgender and gender-diverse children and adolescents.
“‘Sex, or ‘natal gender, is a label, generally ‘male’ or ‘female,’ that is typically assigned at birth on the basis of genetic and anatomic characteristics, such as genital anatomy, chromosomes, and sex hormone levels,” the policy statement, written by a doctor, reads. “Meanwhile, ‘gender identity’ is one’s internal sense of who one is, which results from a multifaceted interaction of biological traits, developmental influences, and environmental conditions. It may be male, female, somewhere in between, a combination of both, or neither (ie, not conforming to a binary conceptualization of gender). Self-recognition of gender identity develops over time, much the same way as a child’s physical body does.”
I interviewed Jason Rafferty, Rhode Island-based pediatrician, child psychologist and the author of that AAP statement, shortly after he wrote it. I asked him if he anticipated any pushback from pediatricians.
“No,” he replied. “The messages of this policy statement are very much in line with the core principles of pediatrics, including the importance of using a nonjudgmental, family-based, developmentally appropriate approach. It emphasizes that transgender and gender-diverse children — like all children — need support, love and care from family, school and society. When supported and loved as they grow and develop, kids mature into happy and healthy adults.”
The science has spoken. Over and over and over again.
And the people tasked with passing legislation and advocating for policies and otherwise shaping the world our kids are inheriting really ought to familiarize themselves with it. And trust it.
The Equality Act, by the way, passed the House 224-206. Let’s hope senators find it in themselves to read and trust the science before they vote it up or down.