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Trans Substantiation, Part 4
The stirring conclusion
Thank you for bearing with this week of emails. I promise this won’t be a regular imposition, nor do I anticipate re-visiting trans issues with much regularity in the future. If you did enjoy any of the content, please share and subscribe.
I began this series with my own identity crisis. Identity crises in youth are normal, even normative – if you’re entirely at ease in your own skin all throughout childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood, there might be something wrong with you! Our duty as adults is not to keep kids from questioning their identity – that is a normal developmental process, part of coming of age. Our duty is to prevent youthful experimentation from ruining the rest of their lives. This is why, for example, we have laws preventing children from getting tattoos or taking out home loans. As much as nine year olds would love cavorting poolside at their brand new condo while tatted up to their eyebrows in dinosaurs and unicorns, these are decisions we do not let them make until their frontal lobe is somewhat more developed. Please, go ahead and play house, just don’t take out a mortgage. Play with your appearance, just make sure the dye can wash off. Yes, play with sex roles and stereotypes – just don’t cut your breasts off.
What can we do as a society to better protect our children? For starters, just as children are banned by law from making many other life-changing decisions, we need to legally prohibit pediatric hospitals and gender clinics from prescribing cross-sex hormones and performing sex-change surgeries on minors. Gender dysphoria treatment in minors should be limited to counseling and psychiatric services with the admirable goal of getting each person to accept their body as it is, not surgically transform it into a caricature of what it is not. That this is even controversial to state astounds me; that the nation’s most powerful institutions, including the leading pediatric hospitals across America, would loudly oppose any such legislation mystifies me.
What can you do as a parent to protect your child? Try your best to ground your child in a true, beautiful, and meaningful sense of identity. I began this series with my own story. Before superficial identity politics took over all the universities, my love for art led me to discover that, as radically different as my favorite artists and I may be – different sexes, different races, different eras, different lives – we are all created by the same eternal, unchanging Lord. This – or, at the least, a secular approximation invoking our common humanity – used to be taken for granted in our children’s education. It no longer is. No surprise that we are seeing a crisis of subjective identity run amok. I’m afraid if I were in school today I would be taught nonsense like the only reason I identify with Tennyson is because we’re both white, or that since the overwhelming majority of my favorite writers are women I must be non-binary. It would only be a matter of time before my well-meaning teachers turned me into a white supremacist with a surgically enhanced bust. Do not let that happen to your kids. Do not let your child build her identity on superficial, shifting sands of race, or blatantly misogynistic sex stereotypes, or even New Kids on the Block fandom. Of course she will experiment with all sorts of supplemental identities, that is a normal part of life, but never let her forget the identity that matters most. Find that solid rock, and make your stand.