In Response to Fowler’s Critique of My Arguments, Part 4

Read Erdvig’s original article here.

Read my original refutation here.

Read Fowler’s critique here.

Read Part 1 of this article here.

Read Part 2 of this article here.

Read Part 3 of this article here.


On “Unfortunate Disconnects”

Fowler may think that he does not condone violence against the queer community, but such attitudes as his allow those who do to exist. If he believes that gayness is a sin, is he likely to much protest the WBC’s “God Hates Fags”? If he believes it is a sin, won’t he glancingly disapprove of the murder of Matthew Shepard, but not the motive for it? He will certainly tolerate and accept the attitudes of those who are violently homophobic and transphobic, for he holds them himself, and will only protest, and only a little, at the extremity to which those attitudes are carried out? If you want a slippery slope of acceptance, worry about this one.

Fowler also claims a “pursuit of truth and a desire to fulfill the Great Commission.” By all Biblical evidence, his homophobia and transphobia are expressly hindering that goal.

In Response to His Questions:

The earliest point when there was a semantic distinction between sex and gender was 1978. It has been a standard practice to make this distinction since at least 2001, outside of the gender studies field. See Part I.

It is not known precisely how much influence environment plays in gender identity. It seems to be immutable by age 4—but it’s pretty hard to study this in younger children, due to lack of verbal skills and of knowledge of social markers of gender. Environment does play a huge role in what is perceived as being masculine or feminine, or in what vocabulary persons will use to describe themselves. However, after the fetal period, during which hormones are widely thought to influence gender development, it is generally agreed that environment has a negligible effect on core gender identity.

“Are there transgender individuals who are happy to be transgender?” I’m not sure “happy” is exactly the right word. Dysphoria sucks, and transphobia is scary. It’s not easy. We don’t make this up. Life would be a lot easier for trans* people if they weren’t trans*. But I think that there are many transgender individuals, and I know that I am one, who are proud that they had this struggle to shape their personalities, and who, if they could find a magic pill that would make them cisgender according to their birth sex, would not take it. If I weren’t trans*, I would have a lot less empathy and a lot less courage, and I’m glad that I’ve had the experience I did so that I could learn from them. I guess that could count as happy.

“Do transgender individuals claim that there is absolutely no reason to think that the elevation of transgenderism, etc. will ever have an effect on children who are what you refer to as cisgendered but who are bullied for other reasons, thereby leaving them vulnerable to suggestion?” What??? Bullying does not leave people vulnerable to suggestion in any such degree. It would be a highly unusual bullying situation that would focus on getting someone to identify with a gender not congruent to their birth sex. In fact, I have never heard of such a situation. What is much more common is that a trans* kid is bullied or underinformed into performing assigned gender at the expense of their true gender. If anything, “the elevation of trangenderism, etc.,” will serve to remove homophobic and transphobic epithets from the bullies’ lexicon and just generally lessen the acceptability of bullying behavior. In short, bullying is not going to cause anybody to become trans*, no matter how much trans* acceptance there is.

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Posted in Delmore-Erdvig-Fowler Dialogue, Politics, Queer Stuff

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