by MIA ASHTON AND MICHAEL SHELLENBERGER
Republicans are hyping the stories of a handful of detransitioners, people who had sought to change their sex either through drugs or surgery and then changed their minds, even though detransition is rare, according to the New York Times.
“As Republican-controlled state legislatures have passed over a dozen bills banning transition care for minors this year,” wrote Maggie Astor, detransitioner Chloe “Cole and fewer than 10 activists like her — people who transitioned and then changed course — have become the faces of the cause, according to a New York Times review of news coverage and legislative testimony.” But, noted the Times, “Most people who transition do not change course.”
Astor went on to claim that just 2 to 13 percent of individuals who transition decide to detransition, but those numbers are almost certainly wrong. The 2% number appears to have come from a study of trans people in Sweden between 1960 and 2010, a population very different from the trans population today. At that time, adult males made up the bulk of referrals to gender clinics, whereas in the last decade, there has been a surge of adolescent females identifying as transgender and seeking medical treatment.
The 13% number does come from a more recent 2015 study. It is of 17,151 trans-identified individuals. And they are all from the U.S., not Sweden.
But the data is drawn from the US Transgender Survey of 2015 and only includes trans-identified individuals who temporarily detransitioned and thus excluded permanent detransitioners.
What’s more, the number of minors diagnosed with gender dysphoria rose sharply after 2015, from 15,172 in 2017 to 42,167 in 2021, in the United States, according to a report by Reuters. This can be explained in part by the Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria (ROGD) hypothesis, which disproportionately affects natal girls.
Researchers are also likely to undercount detransitioning because so many detransitioners tend to, understandably, avoid going back to the same health care providers who transitioned them, undermining the extent to which we can rely on medical records.
As such, the evidence simply does not support the Times’ central claim that detransitioners are just 2 to 13% of the trans-identified population.
And there is good reason to believe that the absolute and relative number of detransitioners may grow, not decline. There is, according to the best available research, a four to eight-and-a-half year lag time between transition and detransition.
As trans people mature into adulthood, many will regret sacrificing their ability to have children and achieve orgasm, both of which are core parts of achieving long-term romantic relationships.
Another reason to believe regret will rise is that adolescent-onset gender dysphoria appears to be a social contagion. While some claim that the rising number of trans-identified youth is due to greater social acceptance, as occurred with left-handedness and homosexuality, neither of those disproportionately impacted adolescent girls. By contrast, many recent social contagions, including anorexia and bulimia in the 1980s and self-harm in the 2000s affected predominantly teenage girls, similar to what we’re seeing with gender dysphoria today.
Debates over the medical mistreatment of gender dysphoric youth are raging in Europe and the United States. England’s only pediatric gender clinic, the Tavistock, has been ordered to close its doors after an independent review found young people were being fast-tracked into medical treatment. Many displayed autistic traits and or were same-sex attracted, and thus may have been misdiagnosed with gender dysphoria.
There are profound ethical questions over whether minors can truly consent to life-altering medical procedures, particularly given growing evidence that trans is a media-and-activist-driven social contagion.
And yet the article in the New York Times, like many in the mainstream media, ignored all of these scientific and moral concerns to write a simplistic attack on those raising such concerns as bigots and political opportunists. Why? Why are so many journalists, liberals, and progressives, who identify as more empathic to the needs of the vulnerable than conservatives, so quick to dismiss the lived experiences of detransitioners?
How LGB Became LGBT
For many if not most liberals and progressives, being trans is like being gay or black: it’s innate, and not something people choose. Trans people are “born that way.” And it is immoral to discriminate against any person for how they were born, since that’s not something people control. We no longer prevent whites and blacks, or same-sex couples from marrying, the logic goes. We should thus not prevent trans people from using drugs or surgery to realize their true sex.
Similarly, just as psychologists no longer engage in “conversion therapy,” to convert homosexuals into heterosexuals, psychologists must no longer engage in conversion therapy to convert trans people into “cisgender” people.
But trans people aren’t born that way. That’s not our opinion, that’s the whole premise of transgenderism. Trans people are born the wrong way, according to trans activists, most progressives, and mainstream news journalists, including, perhaps, the New York Times writer who dismissed detransitioners as puppets of Republicans.
Whereas the gay rights movement asked society to accept homosexual people for who they are, and allow them to love, have sex with, and marry whomever they choose, the trans movement asks society to reject people for who they are, and help them medically imitate members of the opposite sex.
Trans people were born into the wrong sex, the thinking goes, but can change their sex through drugs and surgery. As such, anybody who tries to prevent people, whether adults or children, from using drugs and surgery to change their sex is in the grip of an outmoded morality, at best, or immoral and cruel at worst.
But it is not possible to change sex because one’s sex is innate and immutable. The interventions offered in gender clinics, such as cross-sex hormones, the removal of healthy breasts, penis amputations, or the creation of a “penis” using the skin and flesh stripped from a forearm only serve to create the appearance, to varying degrees, of the opposite sex.
While the definition of sex is obvious to many people, it is not obvious to many others. Recently, the editor of Scientific American was corrected through a “community note” on Twitter after falsely claiming that there are more than two sexes of a bird species.
It wasn’t always this way. Before there was an LGBT movement there was just an LGB movement. While it may seem inevitable, in hindsight, that trans people joined lesbian, gay, and bisexual people to form a single movement, it wasn’t. Indeed, there was significant resistance, particularly from lesbians, to including men who identified as “trans women” into their movement.
Many of the adult men who identify as trans women are sexually aroused by the idea of themselves as women, a phenomenon known as “autogynephilia,” which is considered a paraphilia, or sexual fetish. Sex researcher Ray Blanchard coined the term in 1989.
Autogynephilia is undoubtedly a difficult paraphilia to live with, and sufferers deserve to be able to access help without fear of being shamed. However, the problem faced by such men is the difficult task of asking for societal acceptance for expressing their fetish publicly.
“If a guy decides he’s coming into work as a woman from now on,” explained Blanchard, “it’s one thing for him to say: ‘I’m coming to terms with the fact that I’ve always been a woman inside,’ and quite another for him to say: ‘I’ve moved on from just masturbating wearing women’s clothes to wearing them all the time.’”
Denying the sexual aspect of their autogynephilia became a way for these men to engage in their paraphilia publicly, and to reduce the potentially threatening nature of it to those around them.
When sex researcher Dr. J. Michael Bailey’s book The Man Who Would Be Queen was published in 2003, providing a truthful and frank description of autogynephilia, the reaction from trans activists was swift. The vicious campaign to ruin Bailey’s life and career was led by three men who identify as women, two of whom had spoken openly about the erotic nature of their cross-sex identities just a few short years before. But times had changed, and dramatically. Mention of autogynephilia was now strictly forbidden.
Some of these men also became aggressive in demanding their inclusion in the LGB movement.
As we already know the M.S. Media are the Lap-Dogs for the Democrats and Globalists