The Trump admin’s anti-trans proposal would hurt 7 million other Americans, too.
There are a lot of things wrong with the Trump administration’s proposal to define gender and sex as an overlapping constant, bestowed upon all children from birth. One is the utter inhumanity; another is the Orwellian idea that they could somehow make an entire group of people disappear just by controlling words. But perhaps importantly is the fact this proposal isn’t based on actual science; it’s based on an overly-simplistic introductory middle school idea of science.
Consider the fact that ~2% of people are born Intersex, meaning that their hormones, gonads, genitals, and/or chromosomes naturally don’t conform to male/female anyway.
That’s some 6–7 million Americans right there, which is about the same population as REDHEADS.
You can’t legislate away the existence of gingers — they will always be there. People will continue to exist on a spectrum beyond the binary of blonde and brunette. But by formally writing them out of your laws, based on junk science, you’ve now made life increasingly difficult (and exponentially more miserable) for millions of people who don’t fit neatly into your categorical boxes.
And for what purpose? What is actually gained by defining humans to such limiting standards? You’re not serving anyone better; you’re not improving the quality of anyone’s life. You’re just making things complicated and awful, so a certain subset of people have to suffer, just because.
That’s what this bill would do.
But the greatest irony? This is exactly the kind of behavior that anti-”Big Government” Republicans have always claimed to fear.
The GOP has spent decades telling Lovecraftian horror stories about bureaucracy — about the theoretical “Real Americans” who would slip through the cracks lest any kind of organizational anything be formalized. And now they’re proposing the very same practice that they tried — just to spite trans people. Republicans want to use big government to restrict the freedoms and expression of 0.6% of the population just because they’re different, and that scares them.
Trans people are not Intersex. But I know that there are some people who will never come around to loving, accepting, or respecting trans people, no matter what. I think that’s shameful and inhuman — but in the interests of rhetorical “civility,” I’ll say fine, okay. That’s your prerogative.
But if you are one of those people, and you think this bill’s a good idea, then I beg you to consider those 7 million Intersex people — who already have to deal with growing up with a body that falls outside the binary.
Think about the parents and doctors who then will have to decide to mutilate the body of a newborn child and force it to conform to a gender that chose for it, against their will, and how that child will have to relive that trauma in puberty, when their natural body prepares to mature.
There are even children like those in the Dominican Republic who ARE born with Y chromosomes and testosterone, but whose penises don’t express themselves until puberty, so they end up being raised as girls.
Imagine how mortifying your own puberty experience was. Now imagine that, times a million, because your body doesn’t work the way it said in those little instructional pamphlets they gave you in health class.
Even if a body doesn’t work the way that someone else decides it should, it can still work. It can still be beautiful, natural, and yes, functional. Legislation can’t take that away, and nothing is gained by trying.
If I can’t convince you to get behind the rights of trans people, then maybe you’ll stop to consider the lives of those 7 million intersex Americans, to see just how bad this could be.
And there is absolutely no kind of cold, objective logic that would justify that level of abuse and neglect. The lives of Intersex and trans folk matter just as much as anybody else’s.