Summit Ministries, an Evangelical group (their list of faculty will tell you everything you need to know about their theological orientation — definitely straight, white, Republican Evangelical) dedicated to “equipping and supporting rising generations to embrace God’s truth and champion a Biblical worldview,” recently conducted a survey of 1,000 Americans on their views about transgenderism. Here are the “(anally) probing” questions they asked (in the order they were asked):
- Do you believe it is possible to distinguish between men and women?
- Do you believe a person’s biological sex and their gender are two separate things?
- What are your personal opinions about transgenderism? 1) I believe it is a healthy human condition that should be celebrated. 2) I do not believe it is a healthy human condition, but I stay silent on the issue to not offend others. 3) I do not believe it is a healthy human condition, and I am willing to say so.
- What is your opinion of schools teaching about sexual identity and sexual behavior with elementary-age students? 1) It is a perfectly appropriate use of instruction time. 2) It is inappropriate in a school setting. 3) It is dangerous because it could be used to groom children for sexual encounters at a young age.
- Should underage minors be encouraged to undergo permanent gender alteration, or wait until they are adults?
- Should medical professionals performing gender-altering be required by law to disclose the common, long-term medical, and psychological impact of such procedures?
Everywhere Americans look, the media and education culture is bombarding us with relentless, daily messages in support of transgenderism without limits. Despite this intensity, these stunning numbers show plainly that the vast majority of Americans aren’t buying what they’re being sold. A huge majority of Americans don’t think this issue belongs anywhere near our kids. Yet, we also see a powerful chilling effect that this propaganda is having on society, as this research shows that tens of millions disagree with what they see, but are afraid to say anything about their views. We trust this poll will spark all-important conversations so we can properly address these issues as a nation.
- 64% of American voters who have an opinion about the issue do not believe transgenderism is a healthy human condition
- 34% stay silent on the issue to not offend others
- 30% are willing to speak out on the issue
- 36% of American voters who have an opinion about the issue believe transgenderism is a healthy human condition
- 72% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue do not believe schools should teach about sexual identity and sexual behavior with elementary-age children
- 42% believe it is inappropriate in a school setting
- 30% believe it is dangerous and could lead to children being groomed for sexual encounters at a young age
- 28% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue believe it is a perfectly appropriate use of instruction time
- 93% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue believe it is possible to distinguish between men and women.
- 7% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue don’t believe it is possible to distinguish between men and women
- 90% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue say minors should be required to wait until they are legal adults before undergoing permanent gender alteration
- 10% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue say minors should be encouraged to undergo permanent gender alteration
- 90% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue believe that medical professionals performing gender-altering procedures be required by law to disclose the common, long-term medical and psychological impact of such procedures
- 10% of American voters who have an opinion on the issue believe that medical professionals performing gender-altering procedures should not be required by law to disclose the common, long-term medical and psychological impact of such procedures.
All based on loaded questions. All based on narrow question constraints. All are based on demographics that conveniently ignore religious identification. And most of all, all based on 1,000 Americans — sixty-seven percent who are forty and older — out of a population of 333,000,000 people (260,000,000 if you remove children from the mix).
Further, Americans are largely ignorant about science in general, and sex and gender specifically. This is another issue where Evangelicalism, Mormonism, and Conservative Catholicism have inhibited or prohibited meaningful discussion on these issues. As a society, we must come to terms with the fact that transgender people exist; that they are family members, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. We must come to terms with the fact that gender and sex are far more complex than we would like to admit; that it’s time to put our Adam and Eve view of the world into the dustbin of history with the Bible from whence this belief came.
That said, we need to have a vigorous debate about when it is appropriate to teach children about sex and what they should be taught when they are. We need to have a national discussion about gender reassignment surgery and puberty blockers. Sadly, current discussions are dominated by extremes. So let’s discuss this issue folks — politely, openly, and honestly. I know that a number of my readers are LGBTQ. Some of the most active commenters on this site are transgender. I consider them my friends. I have long been a supporter of LGBTQ rights, though, I must admit, that I am troubled by some of the things I hear in some corners of the LGBTQ world. I have six adult children and thirteen grandchildren. It is likely (in fact, I know this to be true), that one or more of my children or grandchildren might not fit neatly in the gender/sex categories which I grew up with and dominate the society I live in. As these issues come closer to home for me, my liberal sensibilities have been challenged. It’s easy to support LGBTQ people from a distance, but when it’s one of your own? I pride myself in being supportive of all people, regardless of their sex or gender. I am a fiery advocate for LGBTQ rights. I am proud of the fact that I have LGBTQ friends. Yet, fifty years of religious indoctrination and social conditioning are hard to shake. I wish I could have a Men in Black mind-wipe, as I’m sure many of you wish too. However, that’s not going to happen. We must confront our biases and prejudices head-on. And make no mistake about it — we all have them. Even Jesus, Christians. Just look at how he treated Gentiles. 🙂
Bruce Gerencser, 65, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 44 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.
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