Sunday, June 05, 2016

A significant issue in the build-up to the USA Presidential election concerns the rights of 'trans' people to use the toilet (in America 'bathroom' or 'restroom') they feel most appropriate for their 'gender identity'

That story has not been mentioned by CBBC Newsround, though a few weeks ago the programme did cover something about Republican candidate, Donald Trump.

All the fuss about toilets has given 'trans' a much higher profile than before, giving the impression that they are a sizable minority. But how true is that impression?

The answer to this very much depends on what exactly is meant by a 'trans' person. If the term is used to mean 'transsexual' then only a tiny proportion of the population are trans. However there has been a trend recently to phase out references to 'transsexual' and use the more general term 'transgender' which activists see as more appropriate for people of all ages, including young children. After all, isn't it unlikely the BBC would have made a documentary aimed at kids aged 6-12 if Leo had insisted in calling himself a transsexual?

Broadcasters, book publishers and many LGB allies have been persuaded into believing in the concept of 'gender identity' as opposed to birth sex. Unfortunately parents, too, have been taken in by all this. On seeing indications that their children are interested in the 'wrong' sort of toys, colours or clothes they're encouraged to rush off to quack clinics or 'support' groups, which then are all too happy to confirm that the kid is 'trangendered' and, in so doing, possibly condemn these children to lifetime drug dependency as well as unnecessary invasive surgery.

A more sensible approach is to disregard gender non-conformity except where a child repeatedly expresses the opinion that they are the opposite gender. In other words it may be necessary and appropriate, in rare circumstances, to give children an early sex education lesson, carefully explaining what makes a girl physically different from a boy. It's most unlikely young children will persist in their delusion if parents take time to explain things.

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