Postmodernism, a prevailing philosophy in the United States, argues that Truth cannot be objectively known. Truth consists of narratives constructed by people biased by their own ascribed statuses. Therefore, what may be true for one may not necessarily be true for another, but both people’s truths, even when mutually exclusive, hold equal validity.
If this makes no sense to you, much of the world around you might not make much sense to you either. As it happens, this young philosophy fuels the madness of transgender identity and the movement to affirm it as a valid lifestyle.
After Bradley Manning, Bruce Jenner becomes the latest high-profile person receiving gender reassignment surgery. Jenner, a track and field Olympian, born a man, dominated headlines recently because he mentally identifies as a woman. With the help of modern medicine, Jenner plans to live the rest of his life pretending to be a woman. Postmodernism argues that because Jenner believes himself a woman, he is so. My argument that Jenner can never be a woman, but can only be a mutilated man, offends the postmodern sensibility. On the political left, where postmodernism thrives, activist groups pressure lawmakers and society to recognize gender dysphoria as a legitimate lifestyle, instead of a mental disorder fed by postmodernist tenets. Their work, aimed at helping the gender-confused by convincing society to be complicit in a lie, may do more harm than good.
Dr. Paul McHugh, a retired psychiatrist in chief from Johns Hopkins Hospital, wrote a bold piece for the Wall Street Journal describing gender dysphoria as a mental disorder that leads to dire consequences when treated with gender reassignment surgery. To this end, McHugh quotes a 30-year study from the Swedish Karolinska Institute.
“The study revealed that beginning about 10 years after having the surgery, the transgendered began to experience increasing mental difficulties. Most shockingly, their suicide mortality rose almost 20-fold above the comparable nontransgender population…The high suicide rate certainly challenges the surgery prescription.”
A prescription that Johns Hopkins, America’s premier medical institution, refuses to condone.
Other studies, too, highlight the same phenomenon. The Williams Institute, an LGBT research group at UCLA, finds that the transgendered attempt suicide at twice the rate of lesbians and gays combined. Transgendered men, like Jenner, lead the pack. Transgender rights activists pounced on McHugh, making mostly ad hominem attacks. The statistics, though, speak for themselves.
The reach of this aspect of postmodern thinking even affects young children. 5-year-old Mia Lemay insisted, since she was 2, that she identified as a boy. Her parents, Mimi and Joe–who presumably would not allow Mia to eat ice cream for breakfast as she willed–decided to rename their daughter Jacob, cut her hair, and insist that her preschool treat her as a boy.
“Ultimately, Jacob made that decision in his mind and his heart,” Mimi says. “If we don’t come out now and talk to people and… show people that transgender children are normal and wonderful…then I’m afraid that he will go into the world and meet with hostility.”
Mia/Jacob did not receive gender reassignment medication or surgery, but some parents pursue this course for their children. McHugh explains:
“…[T]here is the subgroup of very young, often prepubescent children who notice distinct sex roles in the culture and…begin imitating the opposite sex. Misguided doctors at medical centers including Boston’s Children’s Hospital have begun trying to treat this behavior by administering puberty-delaying hormones to render later sex-change surgeries less onerous—even though the drugs stunt the children’s growth and risk causing sterility. Given that close to 80% of such children would abandon their confusion and grow naturally into adult life if untreated, these medical interventions come close to child abuse.”
Parents convinced to submit to the will of a toddler, a grown man’s decision to mutilate himself so that he can better pretend to be a woman, and the many people working ardently to change society’s view of the transgendered, do so under the powerful sway of an utterly silly ideology–postmodernism. A 5-year-old girl is not a boy because she says so anymore than Bruce Jenner is a woman, or than I was Luke Skywalker as I proclaimed as a little boy. Truth exists, despite what postmodernists say. Understanding postmodernism for the sham that it is will reintroduce us to clarity and sanity. Or maybe that’s just my own, personal truth.