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THE TRANSGENDER DEBATE.

by Clifford Longley The Tablet Thousands of transgender people and their supporters take part in London’s first ever Trans Pride march through London, Sep 2019 Photo: WIktor Szymanowicz/NurPhoto/PA Images St Valentine’s Day may not be the ideal moment to meditate on the relationship between sex and gender, except perhaps to cry “Vive La Différence!” But it can’t be escaped. The Government is conducting a consultation on reform of the law, and the controversy over transgenderism has come up repeatedly in the Labour leadership hustings. All four candidates have been asked if they would support a reform of the law to allow people to chose their own gender, without first having to comply with medical or psychological criteria. With minor reservations, all four said they would. There is a undoubtedly a strong current running in that direction, by no means only on the left. My only qualification for offering an opinion on the matter is that of someone who was, a long time ago, a male single parent of three children. A family household without an adult female could not function within a normal – that is to say, more or less traditional – set of rules about gender roles. I was brought up within those rules, and never questioned them until I had to. Indeed since university I have often rued that it seemed to be the ugliest men who got the prettiest girls (not being particularly ugly myself). I read somewhere that a woman’s largest sex organ is her skin, covering her whole body. I doubt that could ever be said of a man. My main conclusion is that for the vast majority of the population, including myself, gender is not fluid. It is stable and we are comfortable with it. I did not condition my son into being male nor my daughters into being female. There were no other options, nor did we want any. But it is an undoubted fact that there are some who are born male who devoutly wish to be female. They are not feminised men – they are hard-wired so that their image of themselves does not fit the category they were assigned to at birth. Their sex and their gender do not match. This is mysterious, but it is what nature has done to them and ought to be respected. I do not think it has anything to do with masculinity or femininity, which, as I have said, are social constructs. And I do not know – and I am not sure anybody does – what all this has to do with sexual orientation. In other words a transgender person can be gay or straight (though those expressions may need more careful definition than we usually give them). The major problem that has been raised by the campaign for the rights of transgender persons to self-identify concerns those who were born male and still have all the male sexual apparatus, but who wish to identify as female prior to or apart from the appropriate surgical procedures. They wish to have access to exclusive female facilities such as public toilets. Unsurprisingly, not all women like the idea. It is unhelpful simply to dismiss that attitude as “transphobic bigotry”. In theory at least, a sexual predator with fully functioning male reproductive organs could enter a place reserved for women, just by claiming to be one. I, a father of girls, would strongly oppose that. Penises, erect or flaccid, do not belong in female toilets. They can be instruments of sexual violence. In such a setting, they are threatening. The other problem with gender self-identification is in competitive sport. Penises come with testicles, and testes produce testosterone, the predominantly male sex hormone. It is established medical understanding that testosterone is what triggers puberty in boys, and they then grow on average taller and stronger than girls of the same age, along with other changes. So an adult transgender female – formerly male – will still have years of development behind her under the influence of a normal male level of testosterone. She will still be taller and stronger than a non-transgender female of the same age. The problem isn’t solved by imposing limits on her testosterone levels now or in her recent past, as some of the governing bodies of sport are doing. She doesn’t shrink to a smaller size and shape as a result. It isn’t her levels of testosterone now that makes her faster and stronger. It is the levels throughout her past life. So it is likely she will outperform non-transgender women. Is that fair? How sporting bodies solve this is their problem, but it won’t be sorted be hurling insults around. These issues raise strong emotions, which makes their calm discussion difficult. Significantly, all the Labour leadership candidates agreed that they do need to be discussed, and that there are difficult areas. That surely implies that there have to be some limitations to self-identification, for the good of all sexes and genders including those in transition. But otherwise, why can’t we all just live and let live? PAT SAYS The writer has presented us with food for thought. And he is right to call for live and let live. But when it comes to the NHS and treatment life saving treatments for cardiac, neurology and organ donation should take precedence over sex change ops, in my opinion. MY PECTORAL CROSS There were some comments on the blog yesterday about my pectoral cross – calling it ostentatious and very Catholic. It is not ostentatious. It is made of iron and is silver plated. It was bought on Ebay in its iron form for £40 and the silver plating cost another £20. It was designed and made by a prisoner in Auschwitz – and that is its principle attraction to me. It shows, on one side the crucified Jesus and above him the Father”s sending the Holy Spirit. On the reverse in German, is the prayer from the Mass: It is unashamedly Catholic. I am a Catholic. Not a Roman Catholic but a Catholic. The Catholic Church is greater than the RC denomination.

69 replies on “THE TRANSGENDER DEBATE.”

People are people are people and should express themselves as appropriate. Messing about with bits and pieces should only be done after careful consideration As they say in the sale when it’s gone it’s gone. Nice cross! Primarily the cross is not just a piece of jewellery hi

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Fast-tracking the process of gender transitioning is going to result in a lot of irreparable heartache for very many people: most who transition change their minds.

Even so, no trans-person who is undergong this process should be allowed to use toilets assigned for either males or females until they have fully, and surgically, transitioned.

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Bishop P., apparently as high as 80% of genderdysphoric children do not persist in this state into adulthood. With this knowledge, it would be seriously irresponsible to fast-track a gendertransitioning process for the young. I don’t know the merits or demerits of putting a pre-pubesscent genderdysphoric person on puberty blockers to assist a later stage of surgical gender reassignment. The jury is still out on that one.

Check out http://www.transgendertrend.com/children-change-minds/

By the way, I apologise for the evil remarks I made yesterday about the lady who was assualted. No excuse.

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Magna I think that source should be treated with caution for obvious reasons!
That said I have been on training given by the gender clinic in London who said that many of the people (they didn’t give exact statistics as I remember) who begin the counselling process realise that changing gender is not the solution for their own issues and don’t proceed.
I would think the statistics would be different for children and adults and while I can’t pretend to understand their situation have met many trans people who were very happy with it.
The statistics are complex for trans people because they have high levels of violence and prejudice aimed at them, and are likely to experience this from a young age. This violence and prejudice predisposes them to mental illness (as does any violence and prejudice) and their high levels of mental illness allow the anti-trans camp to criticise them further. I cannot overstress how complicated this is, which makes apparently clear numbers like you quote unfeasible.
Anecdotally they are very brave to take an irrevocable decision with no way of knowing how it will be in the future. Almost nobody else makes that sort of decision, but who has never regretted marrying their spouse, for example.
I used to work in a children’s mental health service and was surprised at parents who were right behind even quite young children who wanted to transition. I was also surprised at some children who were very clear from almost being able to talk that they were born the wrong gender. I also found I admired those parents, and the quandary is terrible if you want to hold back a very young child in case, at the possible price of greater unhappiness.

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12.05
Happy to oblige. 😄
All the easier to put my hellish trident where the sun will never shine. 😎

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12.46
You mean ‘your God’. A projection of YOUR ideas, YOUR preferences, YOUR biases, etc
An idol that has no objective existence.
Therefore no apology necessary.

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”You mean ‘your God’. A projection of YOUR ideas, YOUR preferences, YOUR biases, etc An idol that has no objective existence. Therefore no apology necessary”
the gift that just keeps on giving hahahaha

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“And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him (Luke 12:10)

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1.18

You clearly don’t know what that passage means: it is not literal speech.

Teacher’s comment: unlikely ever to do any better than the mediocre.

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12.20
I think every source in this debate should be treated with caution, because I have not come across any neutral ones. Even the ‘science’ seems polarised at times, driven from one, often religious slant or another.
Where are the human ‘success’ stories in this: the people who fully transitioned years ago and are happy with the decisions they each made to seek surgical gender reassignment. And then where are those who fully transitioned, too, but regret allowing surgical intervention. I am cognisant of that some of the latter may regret full transitioning for social rather than personal reasons: bigotry, morsl denunciation, discrimination, mockery, physical violence, etc.
It seems to me that crucial facts are being withheld in this debate to help ensure tailored outcomes.
I am not opposed to gender transitioning, up to and including surgical gender reassignment, if this is appropriate for an individual. My position is not ideological, since as a Catholic I am not prepared to toe the Pope Francis line on this subject for its own sake. I have studied his arguments and, frankly, I consider them more than anything else pious twee based on simplistic Genesis notions of sexual binary. I am almost sorry to say this, but there is something innately comical when churchmen turn to the writing of the Ancients for moden medical wisdom.
My concern is primarily the mental and physical well-being of gender-dysphoric children vis a vis a wider world that can be very hostile to them.

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1.34
A-hah, hah, hah 😅😅😅
Coming from you, that’s priceless.
Entertaining, though…in a Year Ten way. 😉

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9.28

That’s the point: someone truly gender-dysphoric would not identify as male.

What constutes malehood? Penile genitalia alone?

The debate has moved far beyond the anatomical stage.

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“Penises, erect or flaccid, do not belong in female toilets.”

I imagine all the seminarians at Maynooth will wholeheartedly agree with that.

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Oh wow! That photo is a classic! Our Fanny, Prying Priapic Paullie, Gorgeous, Jockstrap Jones, Mick the Extractor, Hugh “The-Dawg-Ate-Me-Homework-Sor” Cowboy Connolly, the Deacon Who Disappeared From Tuam, Robert “Didn’t-Last-Pissing-Time” McGivme and a whole passel of others about whom engrossing commentaries could no doubt be written – where to begin. Ah, “Those were happy days in so many many ways …. “ before the DooDoo hit the fan.

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That photo is a pictorial record which bears everlasting and inestimable testament, to the superlatively sterling and utterly stellar quality, of priestly formation in Gaynoof. What a gallery of the spawners and the spawned.

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12.53

The ladies in their finest.

Don’t they just love dressing up?

Any excuse to wear female-esque clothing.

Maybe they’re gender-dysphoric, too.

And seeking the chop. 😉

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What next? Magna and Pat – you are exhausting your mutual admiration posts! Pat, go and Google for accurate information. There are many researchedcarticles in this issue. Search for them. When are you and mags transitioning (from hatred to respwct, mercy and forgiveness)!! Just asking…🎎🎎🎎🎎

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Frankly, who is truly surprised? We should be suspicious of the kind of manipulative egotist who sets out to be a saint. Mother Teresa was another one. It’s a Catholic version of the Führerprinzip: an exercise in propaganda rather than reality.

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11.50
Dirty old bugger.
Never, ever trust the ‘holy’ men, especially those who are internationally lauded for their, er, sanctity, and for their good deeds.
We already know that JPII was a paedophile protector and paedophilia/ephebophilia enabler. And we know that Benny boy ignored reports from around the world that priests were kiddie-fiddling.These men are not fit to be role-models for anyone, especially in moral terms.
I wonder how many other Romanists in the Pantheon of Cod Sainthood were abusers; I’d bet there were many.
There is only one role-model: Christ. Forget the rest. They are charlatans.

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then should have partnered him with a man for one show. see the amount of phone calls coming into RTE. Michael Voris would have a field day

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12.48

Um, a little photoshopping might help here?😕

Would love to see Voris, and his rug, in a spin.

Apparently the two are inseparable, even in the bath. 😉

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Magna Carta 22nd Feb 2020 — 11:24 am — ” … Even so, no trans-person who is undergong this process should be allowed to use toilets assigned for either males or females until they have fully, and surgically, transitioned.”
………………………………
The real answer there is Gender-Neutral Restrooms, properly constructed with suites of one-person washrooms fully, and solidly. partitioned – such as they have, here in London, at the Wallace Collection, and the London Local Authorities are intending to install.
They solve the trans-gender problem and also give protection against perverts and robbers.

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”I am a Catholic. Not a Roman Catholic but a Catholic”
Catholic noun
Definition of Catholic
1 : a person who belongs to the universal Christian church
2 : a member of the Roman Catholic church
PROTESTANT
1 : a member of any of several church denominations denying the universal authority of the Pope
2 : a Christian not of the Roman Catholic or Eastern church

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I too appreciated Clifford Longley’s typically thoughtful article, which contrasts with the dogmatic certainty of bishops such as the repellent Thomas Paprocki who appropriate judgment on what they regard as what’s left of the Catholic moral high ground. See the latest in Jean Vanier to see how rocky that is. Despite trying to take on board different points of view, I remain very uncertain and so keep my mouth shut. What is clear that our understanding of gender and sexuality is work in progress. If the Church cannot be part of that, she might as well have remained stuck in the medieval notion that women were defev

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My overriding sense when it comes to people who are transgender and transitioning, is one of admiration and respect for them. I think they are people who are incredibly brave and courageous to do what they think is right for them. It is not an easy route, having to negotiate not only the medical aspects, but also the community, social and family aspects. Many people ridicule them and make fun of them, even discriminate and abuse them. So, undertaking the journey that they take will mean that they have to have great courage and strength. I doubt if I would have the strength of personality, character and courage to do what they are doing. So, before anything else, and notwithstanding some of the issues which have been raised on this issue, I give them my respect and admiration for their strength of character and courage, and I wish them well.

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St Luke’s institute website has also vanished it just says error for about a month now even if it was changing its page it wouldn’t take that long and why would it need to ? That place has had a lot of money pumped into it by the Bishop’s conference it’s like a Blackpool hotel inside with a help yourself to as many cookies as you like kitchen. It needs shutting down, the psychological test for seminarians should be simple, brief and done by a totally secular qualified professional not a team of religious amateurs or those professionals in their pay. All the ones who cause problems all passed their psychological tests so clearly it’s not fit for purpose

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The Government should not include the COE or the Catholic Church in their consultation process on this matter, not with their record on child abuse and cover-ups, etc. What an insult that would be to transgender people.

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3.05
The Government should, of course, include RCs in its consultation, whether clerics or not. But absolutely no cleric in the capacity of representing the views of the Church.

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How could Abp Turtle provide an informed opinion? They would have been called Copenhagen capons in her day.

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Clifford Longley says that he ‘did not condition my son into being male, nor my daughters into being female.’
What Clifford is alluding to here are the cultural constructs of masculinity and femininity, not the sexual binary of birth. The implcation here is that Mother Nature herself did that job, naturally, for Clifford, assigning an easy masculinity and femininity to his kids respectively. Sorry Cliff, but that’s cod Natural Law: it wasn’t Mother Nature who bought your son and daughters items of male and female clothing long before they could even think of such things, never mind ask for them; it was YOU, Cliff.
And it wasn’t Mother Nature who bought your son that twin holsters and guns for Christmas, and your daughters the Calamity Jane cake make-up; it was YOU, Cliff.
Adults do, most definitely (and in a way more weighted than they could know) help construct children in culturally acceptable ways (Shades of Stepford Wives somewhere here) which can make life for children with gender-dysphoria, especially if professionally undiagnosed, a living hell.
And you, Cliff, are no exception to this.

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Pat I don’t know how to break free. I’m presently in a Sexual relationship with a Senior Maynooth Priest. He told me I was God’s beautiful child and he loves me. I don’t know how to stop the relationship and he has a bad temper for example in the rectors talk 3 years ago he called you a fake bishop. He likes to take me into the Carton Suite for sleepovers. Pat what should I do, if I report he will retaliate and punish me.

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