Eric Teetsel, the author of the Kansas GOP resolution on transgender identity, was given space in the Kansas City Star to make his case for the Republican position. Kudos to the Star for so doing.
Teetsel is president of the Family Policy Alliance of Kansas. Last month, he and participants at the Republican state convention affirmed “God’s design for gender as determined by biological sex and not by self-perception,” and resolved to “oppose efforts to validate transgender identity.” According to Teetsel, they also declared that “public schools should not undermine the values of parents who do not agree with transgenderism; and that students have a reasonable expectation of privacy and safety at school.”
Having done so, Teetsel observes, Kansas Republicans were greeted with a firestorm of media criticism, including a “shamefully inaccurate” column in the New York Times. Wrote the Times’s Jennifer Finley Moylan of the resolution, “It’s about making the dignity of certain human beings illegal. It means, should this resolution become law, that it will be a crime for the tiny transgender population — already one of the most maligned and marginalized in the nation — to exist “with validity” in the Sunflower State.”
Teetsel contends that the Republican resolution on transgender identity is not at all the hateful, anti-science dogma opponents have called it. “Just the opposite is true,” writes Teetsel, “In fact, the resolution affirms ‘the dignity of every human being, including those who identify as LGBT.’ Compassion and concern for the well-being of others is what motivated the statement. There is no love in a lie.”
Teetsel argues gender dysphoria is not genetically determined. There are many cases where patients have been able too reconcile their perceived gender identity with their biological gender identity. Giving experimental puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to children too young to mature out of their gender dysphoria does no one any good. As a case in point, Teetsel cites studies including a Swedish one that showed a suicide rate 19 times higher than the norm among those who have had gender reassignment surgery. Changing one’s sex, Teetsel suggests, does not solve one’s problems.
“We didn’t ask for this fight, but it’s here,” concludes Teetsel. “The rapid and widespread attention received by the Kansas GOP resolution indicates just how entrenched what I believe is a lie about human gender identity has become in a short amount of time. But it also tells of the thirst that good citizens still have for truth. Let’s be people who have the courage and compassion to tell it.”