A Word About Kristin Beck

I generally like to stay away from social issues, because frankly, I don’t think they belong in the political sphere. One’s religion, gender, sexual orientation, etc. should be one’s own, and I have a hard time sometimes with the comments I get from people I respect about the issues.

However, I feel I have to mention Kristin Beck – as a military veteran, as someone interested in military issues, and someone with what I like to believe is a shred of human decency, although sometimes I may come off as bloody cold.

I wouldn’t blame you if you don’t know who Kristin Beck is. Kristin Beck is a former Navy SEAL.

What?

Yeah. A kickass operator Christopher Todd Beck, who apparently earned a Bronze Star with valor and a Purple Heart and served in three different SEAL commands – including the exclusive SEAL Team 6 – is now a woman.

In a memoir titled “Warrior Princess,” released Saturday with little fanfare by a tiny publishing company, Beck describes two decades as a member of the Naval Special Warfare command, with seven combat deployments, including service in Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Beck describes the internal struggles – believing he was a female trapped in a male body – that began when he was just a boy.

The inner conflict didn’t fade, even as he pursued his career as an elite commando in an exclusively male profession.

[…]

It wasn’t until after retiring in 2011 as a senior chief petty officer that Beck came out as a transgender woman, identifying as Kristin.

Beck now works as a military contractor in the Tampa, Fla. area. One of her previous bosses, retired SEAL and astronaut William Shepherd, wrote the book’s foreword, praising Beck’s courage.

What is there to say about this?

Christopher Todd Beck served with distinction. He earned his medals, was wounded in combat and retired as a Senior Chief. He held his doubts about who he was in check. He did his job – apparently with honor. And when he finally left the service, he decided to finally be honest with himself and others, and became a “she.”

I commend Kristin Beck for this. I honor what she has done, and I refuse to pass judgment on what she is – or believes herself to be. It’s none of my business. It shouldn’t be any of ours, either, but it’s an interesting and fascinating story that she felt she needed to tell.

OK. Fine. Tell it.

What I’m not fine with, and what I’ll never be fine with is some of the ignorant comments that have come out of this story.

This is proof that there is just no way of knowing what a person is capable of doing. This is a fine example of why I trust no one around my 6 year old daughter! You never know what is going through someone’s mind, not even the government can filter this sort of thing out…….not that it matters now does it? No more don’t ask don’t tell, now it’s all show and tell. Where’s my magic 8 ball, I need some answers quick! — shitbag #1

Was this guy/girl wounded while on active duty? Like, a shot to the head or something like that. This is just disgusting and those who would tolerate this sickness are just as disgusting.shitbag #2

I’m glad these types of comments are generally in the minority, but it disgusts me to no end to see someone who has risked his life for his country, got wounded in the service of his country, served his nation honorably and did things most people couldn’t possibly accomplish. I’m fairly sure the two shitbags above weren’t SEALS and couldn’t possibly become SEALS.

Just thank the woman for her service and move on. You don’t want to read about her transition? Then don’t! You want to question why this is front page news? You’re well entitled to do that.

But to spew the kind of poison these two shitbags – as well as others on that site – have spewed is disrespectful to an honorable and challenging career.

55 responses

  1. Her life, her business, her happiness, her honors… wants to tell her story – you want to read/hear it buy the book. You don’t, drive on- ’nuff said.

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  2. Spot on! I’d love to hear Shitbag #1 and #2 say those exact words to her face or yours. I love nothing better than seeing righteous wrath administered by the proper authority.

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    1. Jim, that comment on your page about whether or not she should get her retirement benefits really pissed me off. I tried to be nice, because it’s your page, and I don’t want to shit on it, but this twat is actually trying to make a case that Kristen doesn’t deserve her benefits, because she’s a “different person?” I know this is a friend of yours, but I’d like to cunt punt her.

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  3. Heh.

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  4. I’m sorry, Nicki, but this “guy” is a “guy”. It makes no difference what he “feels” or how many surgeries he’s had or how many hormones he takes. Unless and until he can change his DNA to that of a female…he’s male. That said, I couldn’t care less. If he wants to pretend to be a girl, I couldn’t care less. If he wants to swish around looking for a boyfriend, I couldn’t care less. If he wants to wear his hair long, wear lipstick and mascara, dresses and high heels, I couldn’t care less. However, make no mistake–he’s not a she, and he’s living his life as a lie…which I also couldn’t care less about.

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    1. I’m in agreement with you, ppad. One can physically mutilate oneself if that is what makes them contented. That being said, this person served his country honorably. Case closed.

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    2. That’s his business and his choice… or her… If he wants to live his life as a woman, that is is business as well. It is not up to us to pass judgment on his life. It’s his life, after all. I’m fine with whatever he/she chooses. I’m more pissed off with people who begin to talk of pedophilia, or rant about it being disgusting, sick, etc. or maintain he shouldn’t receive his retirement, because he’s somehow a “different person” now.

      FUCK!

      The guy did more in his military service than most of us could ever hope to achieve in a lifetime! Give him credit for that, and move on if you don’t approve of his choice.

      That’s really my only point.

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    3. See, this is one of those opinions which, while I support your right to have and say in public, really shouldn’t be said aloud for the sake of common courtesy. You say you couldn’t care less, but then you go out of your way to state that, no, this person is in fact male, and by golly you’re going make a point about that.

      Here we have a SEAL who says, “My name is Kristin. Please treat me like a woman.” Your response is to say “Yeah, sure, Christopher.” Don’t you see how obnoxious that is? This isn’t PC, this is *basic human courtesy* .

      Kindly call people by the names (and pronouns) they give themselves.

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  5. I missed the “take her retirement” comment… Jeeze, I deal with felons at the VA everyday. If they earned their benefits in honorable service to the nation and after that service they become a felon they still get their treatments, benefits, even disability pay. Hell, we have state prison guards and county deputies escorting Vets currently in prison into the hospital for treatment and checkups they can’t get at the prison infirmary… But then this all illustrates a fundamental difference in today’s populace… damn few “put their mortal bodies between their nation and the war’s desolation…” “in places you have never heard of, against people you do not know, for reasons you no longer care about..” to crib from two different poems.

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  6. OK, Erin, I’ll keep my opinions to myself.

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    1. Jan, I was actually talking to pappad, not you. Sorry for the confusion.

      And to clarify: I don’t care if you feel, in your heart, that Kristin is forever a man. That’s fine. That’s your right. Just grit your teeth and call her “she” in polite conversation, because it’s basic human courtesy.

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  7. Not necessary, Jan. This is a place FOR expressing one’s opinions. If Erin doesn’t like you opinion (or mine), Erin is free to disagree. Just as I am free to disagree with Christopher/Kristin’s insistence that he’s now a “she.” Females have XX chromosomes. If his are XY, then he’s a he…period…dot…end of discussion. That said, I don’t CARE what he calls himself.

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    1. Might want to do some research into some of the various flavors of genetics and such. It is nowhere near as cut and dried as you apparently think it is.

      You are free to disagree with what Kristin has done. But when you insist on using her former name and referring to her as a “he”, then I respectfully submit that what you are displaying is nothing short of rudeness.

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    2. Smarter; realize they are born this way

      So, I guess you did your research at the thousands of things that DO happen in the womb during pregnancy? Every condition is accepted as gold, except for anything to do with gender or sexuality and the fact that some babies are born with BOTH male and female parts. when that child grows up, they want to be what THEIR BRAIN SAYS THEY ARE. Same thing with Transexuals. Your gender is what is between your brain – YOU are just lucky that your parts are the same as what y.our brain says you are. Nowadays, children are transitioning early so the Kristen Beck stories will be few and far between. Get educated before you spew your opinions. Transgender people know prior to puberty what they are or aren’t – do the research. and, no, I am not transgendered, just educated and a researcher by nature.

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  8. I understand that I’m barging into a community in which I’m a stranger and perhaps unqualified to participate but I just need to note, respectfully and for the record, that there is an incredible amount of mis-information, and absence of accurate information, about transsexualism in the public conversation.

    Many many skeptics innocently offer opinions which are based entirely on, respectfully, ignorance. for instance, the comment about XX and XY is just simply not true. It’s sixth grade biology talking. there are, in fact, XY women and XX men (and I do not mean, here those who have acted to transition their sex)..

    there is, in point of fact, a specific physiological process which provides the mechanism for how children are, on rare occasion, born transsexual. I urge those of good will and intellectual honesty to avail themselves of more information before knee-jerking to the more traditional positions.

    I stand willing to further the discussion with anyone who has an interest in learning more.

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    1. Please feel free. This isn’t a closed community. Welcome.

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    2. Smarter; realize they are born this way

      Excellently and intelligently stated, and said much better than I tried up there!

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  9. I, for one, would be MOST interested for someone to explain how it’s possible for someone with XX chromosomes to be a “genetic male.”

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  10. Specific to the chromosome question: I’m not a scientist but I have followed a good friend who is literally a rocket scientist who is also intersex and has poured herself into understanding the subject. As I understand it, in layman’s terms, chromosomes don’t MAKE you male or female. Their only purpose is to signal the mother’s body how to provide hormones to the fetus in order to masculinize the male fetus. (That is, all of us are female initially and the Y chromosome will signal the mother’s body to provide testosterone in order to mascilinze the fetus where the Y is present)
    If this process is properly executed, you get a “normal” male child. But sometimes, for various reasons, that process goes wrong.

    A second important aspect – and I’ll provide a link to a brief academic discussion of this – is that the hormone bath which mascilinizes the gonads (and related body characteristics) happens in the first trimester and the hormone bath which masculinizes the brain happens in the second trimester, about 2 months later. If one of these happens and not the other (for whatever reason), you get a transsexual baby.

    Here’s the link on that:

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  11. Now, as a more general comment, I want to share with you a thesis which derives much more from logic, reasoning, and dare i say common sense, than it does from academic knowledge. I’ve shared this as much as i could in threads about subjects like this and usually the folks who are most adamantly opposed to transsexualism (considering it a “choice” or a “perversion) ignore it completely. I’ve never yet had anyone offer a serious attempt to refute it. I hope that it proves to be self-evidently correct. I share it not to chalk up little victories in my head, just for the sake of winning an argument, but rather because I want to equip people of good will to be able to share this reasoning in turn with those they come in contact with who may be skeptical.

    I’m convinced that the great majority of those who are critics of people like Kristin Beck are not hateful people, they are just folks who have never really thought critically about the issue and have been content to just regurgitate the “traditions” of society. It’s my hope that when such people DO think critically, they will have a change of heart.

    Here it is:
    (one caveat: there are examples of transgender behavior that fall outside this thesis. I have no trouble admitting that some people CHOOSE gender non-conformity just as some choose to be, for instance, Gotjh. This is meant only to address the specific physiological condition we know as transsexualism)

    Following are four commonly accepted and well documented medical and scientific facts which no rational person, no matter how ill-informed or religiously committed, object to:
    1. Birth “defects” (conditions which vary from the statistical norm) do, in fact, occur.
    2. Birth “defects” which affect the human brain (e.g. autism, et al) do, in fact, occur.
    3. Birth “defects” which affect the sex-specific construct of the human body do, in fact, occur (what were once incorrectly called “hermaphrodites” and are now properly termed “intersex”). these conditions range from obvious, visible, “abnormalities” (such as having a penis and ovaries, or vice versa) to less visible conditions such as the XX male or XY Female, or AIS.
    4. The human brain is a gender-specific organ. That is, the female brain is physically and operationally different from the male brain

    these are all, scientifically speaking, statements which are not in any dispute at all, nor am I aware of anyone who seriously questions the fatualness of any of these.

    Now, simple logical reasoning mode engaged: in light of those 4 facts, it is not only possible but indeed, inevitable that occasionally an individual will be born with a birth defect (1) which affects the sex specific areas of their body (3) and in this case, their brain (2, 4) in such a way that the sex-specification of that organ differs from the sex specification of the other sex-specific parts of their body.
    In other words, it’s no more unlikely that one would be born with a female brain sex and male gonads (or vice versa) than it is that one would be born with both ovaries and a penis. In fact, quite possibly more likely given the most popular hypothesis about how this occurs, as described above.

    Please feel free to ask any questions I may have left you with.

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    1. Tammy, I do want to thank you for the explanation, as well as your own theory. It does match what I’ve read on the subject and also some things I’ve seen on TV about it.

      There are instances where a child is born with both sets is sex organs, and the doctors will take an educated guess as to which gender the baby is in order to remove one set of organs. Sometimes the doctors are wrong, and you wind up LITERALLY with a man inside a woman’s body or vice versa. I think it was 60 Minutes that had a feature about these children. One mom remembers taking her little baby boy home after the doctor guessed as to the true gender of the child and taking off the corresponding set of sex organs, and realizing that no matter WHAT she did to raise him as a boy – masculine toys, clothes, activities, etc. – her son had very distinct female characteristics and acted like a female. Nothing she could do. Doctors later started to realize they took off the wrong set of organs. But there was nothing they could do. At that point, the baby is too young, and you can’t tell until the child starts to talk, respond, etc. what gender the child will be.

      Now, these are relatively rare cases. The more common ones involve the brain not receiving what it needs from the mother’s body to be sufficiently male (as Tammy mentioned, we’re all XX from the start). And while the sex organs do develop correctly, the brain doesn’t correspond. And these people grow up to be miserable, feeling like an alien in their own bodies without knowing what’s going on.

      Kristen Beck wasn’t accidentally assigned the wrong gender, but it does sound like her brain continued to develop like a female brain even though the chromosomes assigned male genitalia during the first trimester.

      I can’t imagine ANYONE would CHOOSE to be gay, or to be the opposite of their physical gender. I imagine it’s absolute torture not to know what is wrong with you, to constantly feel wrong, to naturally gravitate toward the same sex to the chagrin of families, ostracized by friends, communities, churches, bullied, disowned, called a freak…

      OK – there probably are some weirdos who truly choose this. But I can’t imagine most normal people would select consciously to be ridiculed, disowned, beat up, tossed out by their parents, etc.

      Chris Beck accomplished what most people could only dream about. He did so with all this conflict going on in his own mind, but without complaint and without drawing any kind of attention to his issues. He did his job superlatively and earned honor and respect, even with all the doubts in his head. When he left the service, he was finally able to act on what he knew to be the truth, and he came out as Kristen. This doesn’t change her accomplishments or her experiences. She feels right and at home in her own body now. Good for her.

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      1. Pretty good theory at least, but I’m not certain I buy into the idea that there’s such a thing as a “female” brain as opposed to a “male” brain and the differentiation occurs due to a “hormone bath” at some critical stage of fetal development. I’m more inclined to believe that sexuality is a function of socialization. This is stepping very close to the idea that sexual preference is “genetic,” which is NOT logical. If it WERE “genetic” it would have been bred out of the human genome a LONG time ago because it’s a trait without any survival benefit. I MIGHT buy it if anyone could show me where a transgender male ever had fathered a child or a transgender female ever BORE a child.

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        1. You have to remember this is an anomaly and is pretty rare. I think it’s a pretty good layman’s theory. As far as the so-called “hormone bath,” (I’m not sure that’s a technical term, but I’ve definitely encountered the principle before), there’s pretty hard scientific evidence out there that it’s correct, and would explain a lot.

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    2. Actually, I have seen this someplace before. It was on an episode of Nova on PBS 30-odd years ago explaining what happens after conception that the fetus starts out as a female. I had almost forgotten about this bit of human biology.

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      1. Then we have no case when it comes to claiming that “life begins at conception,” because we know that the SPERM determines the ultimate sex of the baby that results from conception. Remember that little tidbit of science from human biology–that the FATHER determines the baby’s sex? This “mother produces a ‘hormone bath’ business” flies in the face of EVERYTHING we’ve been taught about fetal development over the past century or so. I’m sorry, but I’m not buying it. The LGBT “community” has been trying for a couple of decades now to make the case that “gayness” is genetic–without much success, I might add. This seems like another effort on their part. Being “gay” was considered a psychosis by the psychiatric and psychological associations for 100 years until 1977, when–quite by coincidence, I’m certain–the PSA’s board of directors had homosexuality REMOVED from their lexicon of neuroses and psychoses shortly after enough “gay” psychologists/psychiatrists were elected TO that board to constitute a majority. I’m VERY suspicious of this whole business. I don’t care what hole someone chooses to use for sexual gratification–as long as it’s kept private and I nor my children or grandchildren are compelled to be subjected to the acts themselves or to graphic depictions of them. Children should be allowed to BE children for as long as possible without their innocence being ripped away from them.

        However, to the issue at hand. I don’t care if someone wants to pretend to be a girl–or a guy, for that matter–if they are genetically not. I merely want them to acknowledge, to themselves if to no one else, what the TRUTH is, and, so far, the truth seems to be that they are sick. Remember that little saw about “Know the truth for it shall set you free?” How would you feel if you were young and met someone you were attracted to and wanted to eventually marry–only to find out later that he/she was “transgendered” and you’d NEVER be able to produce a child and raise a family that was genetically really yours?

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        1. The fact that the sperm carries the genetic material that determines gender is not invalidated by current research. The sperm determines whether it’s XX or XY, but does not determine how the brain develops, especially if there’s an anomaly. Science advances. That’s what it does. It examines new theories and does research to explore them. What is it you’re so disturbed by? Doctors used to treat maladies with leeching too, and that was once considered cutting edge science. Science evolves.

          And what, exactly, does any of this have to do with children’s innocence being ripped away? You’re jumping from a scientific discussion about whether or not this person being a woman mentally for most of her male life is a physiological phenomenon or a “choice” of some sort to “OMG!!! MY CHILDREN ARE BEING EXPOSED TO TEH GHEY!” I don’t see what that has anything to do with it.

          How would you feel if you were young and met someone you were attracted to and wanted to eventually marry–only to find out later that he/she was “transgendered” and you’d NEVER be able to produce a child and raise a family that was genetically really yours?

          The same as I would feel if I found out the person I married was unable to have children for other reasons – no sperm, uterus removed because of cancer, ovaries damaged… whatever.

          And quite frankly, having a family that’s “genetically yours” doesn’t matter to me all that much. I love my adopted daughter just as much as I love my biological son, and I see no difference between them in terms of genetically mine vice not, even though I gave birth to one and not to the other.

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        2. I was merely pointing out, Nicki, that this business of the uterus producing a “hormone bath” that determines a child’s sexual identity is seemingly bogus and very likely another effort on the part of the LGBT “community” to explain their own perversions by using “science.” I’m of the opinion that homosexuality is the result of some trauma, early in a child’s development, often trauma that they aren’t even aware of or capable of recalling. We have friends whose son was a normal child until he reached puberty. His parents (mother and step-father) encouraged him to participate in interscholastic sports because he seemed good at them on the playground. He adamantly refused and wouldn’t give a reason. While visiting an aunt, she overheard him talking to his estranged father on the phone where he said, “I don’t want to go out for the team because I have to have a physical and I don’t want the doctor to find out what we did!” Turns out, his own father had been routinely raping him on his infrequent weekends with him and he thought a sports physical would show what had happened to him. He went into therapy and admitted to molesting a young neighborhood boy. He’s currently living the “gay” lifestyle, though I’d call it ANYTHING but gay.

          I have an adopted daughter myself and I love her every bit as much as I love my biological son. There is no difference in that aspect of our relationship. However, I also know that she will never be able to contribute to my genetic “heritage,” which is the closest thing any of us will ever have to immortality, because she doesn’t HAVE any of my genes. That doesn’t mean I don’t love her and treasure her just as much as I love my son, and it doesn’t mean that I won’t love and treasure her eventual children as much as I love and treasure my genetic grandson. My use of that example was poorly considered and I apologize for it.

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        3. You are, of course, entitled to your opinion vis-a-vis scientific evidence. There is PLENTY of data to support the theory that folks with gender identity disorder have anomalous brain functions that are not the same as regular males and females. This hasn’t anything to do with homosexuality. As for the child you describe, it’s a tragic story that doesn’t establish a causative link between the abuse and the victim’s sexual orientation. For every abused homosexual you show me, I can bring over three who had completely normal childhoods. But again, these are completely different issues.

          I don’t see any LGBT agenda to change science. Science is science. It’s objective, but constantly changing with subsequent discoveries. That is is nature. The more we learn, the more we must adjust our thinking.

          My daughter won’t be carrying on my generic heritage either, but that really doesn’t bother me. I’m just gratified that she’s growing up to be a responsible, intelligent, hard-working adult. Whatever happens after I’m worm food… Meh. I have no control over it. I wonder if this genetic heritage desire is a male thing. It’s very important to my dad as well and a lot of other men I know. He’s convinced that our purpose is to procreate. I feel our purpose is to find joys in our own lives, achieve, succeed in our goals, etc. I’m not trying to insult you. I’m just postulating.

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        4. No “insult” inferred, Nicki. You may be right about it being a “male thing,” which may be why men are more often avidly seeking “procreative” activity than women seem to be. I have every respect for science. Unfortunately, as we’ve seen in recent years, it’s been infused with political ambition and perverted thereby in lots of ways. So I’m more skeptical than ever of those who claim “scientific” backing for their opinions….certainly for “scientific” backing for what are actually SOCIAL issues and have little to do with actual science. There’s really no such thing as “social science” though we’ve been taught that there is for most of my adult life–even as far back as my high school years, when I was JUST as skeptical of the claim as I am today. Bear in mind that one of my undergraduate degrees is in “Sociology.” I “earned” it by learning to parrot my professors’ pronouncements…not by actually buying much of what they were selling. I read extensively instead….including the books assigned by my professors. Books like “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” and “Custer Died For Your Sins.” Both, as you can imagine, are pretty militant and reveal a side of human nature that’s pretty distasteful…but which exists, nonetheless.

          As a police detective, I learned even more about “human nature.” But none of it has much to do with “science.” Human beings are unpredictable. They often do NOT behave in a fashion you might expect.

          The complexity of the human psyche is simply unknowable given the current state of neuroscience, psychology or psychiatry. Anyone who tells you that it’s known in all of it’s parameters is a liar. The same psychiatrist that gets on the stand, for example, and tells you that some perp was “insane” at the time he committed a crime would get on the same stand and testify that he was perfectly sane, depending upon who is paying for his “services.”

          Well, I’ve strayed far afield with this, so I’ll sign off. I merely urge you AND your readers to NOT accept something just because someone tells you that “science” has solved the problem and knows the answers.

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  12. Pappad, I really hate to be the one to parse out a response like this as most people hate to read these but it’s the only way to give a fair response.

    “Pretty good theory at least, but I’m not certain I buy into the idea that there’s such a thing as a “female” brain as opposed to a “male” brain”

    Ask anyone familiar with post-mortem study. Anyone who’s been party to an autopsy knows they are physically different and the science is almost universal that they are functionally different.

    “… and the differentiation occurs due to a “hormone bath” at some critical stage of fetal development.”

    I can only report to you what the prevailing consensus of science is. they have not only observed these things in action but caused them to happen during experimentation. It’s pretty conclusive. I don’t really know how to persuade you any more than I’d know how to persuade you the Earth revolves around the sun and not vice-versa (not being condescending, just saying that if one says “I think the scientists are wrong” then…there’s no real answer for that)

    “I’m more inclined to believe that sexuality is a function of socialization.”

    Let’s be clear on our terms, to avoid confusion. “Sexuality” is the gender you are attracted to. “Gender identity” is the sex you think you ARE. The two are often confused (thanks to the unfortunate “LGBT” acronym) but are not only not the same but not even interrelated (other than possibly having a similar cause)

    Beyond that, assuming you are speaking in fact of gender identity – let’s be clear that Gender Dysphoria is cross-cultural. That is to say, the customs and mannerisms associated with being male or female vary between cultures, and they are indeed a product of socialization BUT trans people are found in every culture and each experience the dysphoria in the context of their own culture. In the M2F example, the mental distress is being precised as male when one knows themselves to be female, and thus they are comforted by the customs and such like associated with their identified gender in their own culture.

    “This is stepping very close to the idea that sexual preference is “genetic,” which is NOT logical. If it WERE “genetic” it would have been bred out of the human genome a LONG time ago because it’s a trait without any survival benefit.”

    This is perhaps THE fundamental reasoning mistake most laymen make when discussing evolutionary forces. The argument that if a mutation has no evolutionary benefit it will be “bred out” ignores the reality that a mutation is, by definition, an aberration. For instance, blindness has no evolutionary benefit – yet children are still occasionally born blind. Because the “defect” is a result of a legitimate biological process occasionally malfunctioning.

    “I MIGHT buy it if anyone could show me where a transgender male ever had fathered a child or a transgender female ever BORE a child.”

    Happens ALL the time. Because most of us are browbeaten into denial from an early age. I’m a transsexual (M2F and i have two sons, and the vast majority of trans people I know parented children before coming out.\

    Extrapolate this through the course of human history, in which almost all of it were cultures in which only the very rich were allowed to be “eccentric” enough to act like the opposite gender and the percentage of trans people who would, if they lived long enough, be parents would approach 100%

    So even by your flawed reasoning, the children of transsexuals are EVERYWHERE.

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    1. You’ve deliberately misread what I meant, here, I believe. I meant that if a transgender “female” could bear a child AFTER the change or a transgender “male” produced a child AFTER becoming “male,” I might be inclined to believe this stuff. THAT’S never happened…not even once.

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      1. Um… why would that matter? The surgical transition comes LONG after the brain development. The person is born with a brain that’s wired differently, so the cosmetic change is made later in life to match the mental basis. So it’s perfectly possible for those folks to reproduce, and of course they wouldn’t after their bodies have been altered!

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        1. My point was that I recognize the fact that there are genetic males “out there” who, for some odd reason, sexually DESIRE other males…I’ve been propositioned by a few of them in my youth. My question is, WHY? Human anatomy is NOT designed for male-on-male sex OR female-on-female sex, for that matter. What’s the “attraction?” Just because a bodily orifice exists does NOT mean that one MUST poke one’s Johnson into it.

          If one is married and decides he (or she) is a “man (or woman) trapped in the body of the opposite sex” then undergoes “reassignment” surgeries, WHY would that person desire to CONTINUE a sexual relationship with his/her spouse? Wouldn’t that make him/her gay? What of his/her spouse? Wouldn’t that make HIM or HER gay, too? I’m sorry, but this issue is ‘way too complicated to make much sense.

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        2. Not being gay, this is not a question I can answer with any authority. I just don’t know. What I DO know that it’s not just about sticking body parts into other people. Physical love is a manifestation of emotional love. It’s not just about breeding. It’s about being as close to a person as you can possibly be on a physical and emotional level. I don’t know why some men fall in love with or are physically attracted to other men any more than I know why you may be attracted to blondes or some of my buddies in the military are attracted to obese hose beasts. Homosexuality has existed as long as man has. It’s none of my business. If this is what gives them joy in life, more power to them.

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  13. “As far as the so-called “hormone bath,” (I’m not sure that’s a technical term, but I’ve definitely encountered the principle before),”

    Definitely not a technical term – just a phrase i sort of coined myself, or picked up from another layperson, which gives a good mental image of the technical process going on. It is, however, a highly documented pre-natal event (eventS actually)

    “PBS 30-odd years ago explaining what happens after conception that the fetus starts out as a female. I had almost forgotten about this bit of human biology.”

    Yes, that bit of the puzzle is indeed really old news.

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  14. “Then we have no case when it comes to claiming that “life begins at conception,” because we know that the SPERM determines the ultimate sex of the baby that results from conception. Remember that little tidbit of science from human biology–that the FATHER determines the baby’s sex? This “mother produces a ‘hormone bath’ business” flies in the face of EVERYTHING we’ve been taught about fetal development over the past century or so.”

    Not so at all! Follow the progression here:

    Sperm fertilizes egg – result? a fetus with “default” arrangement, which is female. This is a description of the physiological characteristics, NOT the chromosomes. chromosomes do not determine sex absolutely and are not a “sex characteristic” per se.

    “Ah”, but you say, “doesn’t the father determine the sex of the child?””

    Yes, in a NORMAL pregnancy with no abnormal events, this is true. The sperm is either carrying an X or a Y chromosome. In a normal pregnancy, if it’s “X” then the fetus will not be exposed to more than trace amounts of testosterone and the infant will develop as a “normal” female. if it is Y then the mother’s body will be signaled to supply testosterone, at two different points during the term, and you will have a “normal” male infant.

    Specifically, the male supplies the chromosome which signals for the proper sex development, so the father’s contribution “decides”

    BUT

    Once the decision is made, the mother’s body ACTS on that decision in order to achieve the “decided” result.

    so nothing you were taught about the father’s contribution deciding the sex of the child was in contradiction to what I’ve said. It’s simply that what you were taught is NORMAL (statistical use of the term) biology, they did not and could not practically teach you about EVERY POSSIBLE aberrational event which may happen during the course of a pregnancy, of which there are tens of thousands. SOME of those dealing with whether or not the proper hormones, in the proper amounts, at the proper time, are present.

    ” The LGBT “community” has been trying for a couple of decades now to make the case that “gayness” is genetic–without much success,”

    That may or may not be proven true, but the case i am making has nothing to do with genetics. it has to do with the reality that biological functions sometimes do not function as they are meant to. That can happen for any number of reasons For instance, there was a medication many pregnant women were prescribed in the late fifties and early sixties which has been associated with a much greater incidence of trans offspring. but laying that aside, consider fetal alcohol syndrome. Those babies are born with abnormalities because something went wrong in the womb, which we know, now, to be associated with alcohol consumption. obviously, there condition is NOT genetic – but it exists all the same.

    Even if science eventually proves that being trans (or gay) is not at all in any way genetic, that would not undermine my argument in the slightest way, nor would it disprove the claim that trans people are born with that condition.

    “However, to the issue at hand. I don’t care if someone wants to pretend to be a girl–or a guy, for that matter–if they are genetically not. I merely want them to acknowledge, to themselves if to no one else, what the TRUTH is, and, so far, the truth seems to be that they are sick. Remember that little saw about “Know the truth for it shall set you free?” How would you feel if you were young and met someone you were attracted to and wanted to eventually marry–only to find out later that he/she was “transgendered” and you’d NEVER be able to produce a child and raise a family that was genetically really yours?”

    you seem to be laboring under several misconceptions which go beyond the science discussion which I will refrain from digressing on for the time being

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  15. ” I’m of the opinion that homosexuality is the result of some trauma, early in a child’s development, often trauma that they aren’t even aware of or capable of recalling”

    A. Being trans and being homosexual are entirely different things.

    B. Your thesis is about as good an example of a completely illogical argument as one can imagine. Basically you are saying “I know that you are gay because of an event i’m sure happened despite the fact that no one including even you has any evidence ever happened.”

    That might help YOU sleep better at night but it has nothing at all in common with rational thinking.

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  16. oh, and in my humble opinion, my “immortality” will not be found in my sons passing on my genetic material, but in my sons passing on the character and ethics that make then and hopefully their children better human beings.

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    1. THIS I ardently agree with!

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  17. “Well, I’ve strayed far afield with this, so I’ll sign off. I merely urge you AND your readers to NOT accept something just because someone tells you that “science” has solved the problem and knows the answers.”

    Of course not. I did not submit the thesis to say “It’s settled, deal with it” but rather to say “If it’s wrong, demonstrate logically HOW it is wrong.”

    As yet, that hasn’t been done. Opinions, suppositions, and skepticism do not constitue logical argumentation.

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    1. Tammy, I think you’ve provided some very interesting discussion on this topic. I hope you continue to be a contributor to this blog. I, for one, am glad to have you here.

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  18. Me, too, Nicki. However, we know that about 2% of the population (any population, despite what the Iranian President thinks) is gay. I’m sorry, but “gayness” and “feelings of being assigned the wrong sexual identity” ARE remarkably similar. Putting aside, for the moment, the extraordinarily rare instances of hermaphroditic births, what is it that makes one psychologically “female” or “male?” It’s, in essence, to which sex one is sexually attracted. In other words, who do you want to have sex WITH? Or, at the very least, which sex do you want to share your life with? Personally, I’ve never understood a guy looking at another guy’s hairy ass and thinking “Gee, I want some of THAT!” To me, that’s as insane as someone hungering to cut out another’s heart and eat it. I realize that some guys HAVE such feelings, but I don’t think I’ll EVER “understand” them. Maybe Tammy can cast some light on it for me.

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    1. I disagree. It’s not just about whom you want to have sex with. I do know several transgendered people who began as one gender, felt wrong, transitioned to the other gender, and their feelings for whom they loved and wanted to have sex with did not change. Those are two different things.

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  19. “You’ve deliberately misread what I meant, here, I believe. I meant that if a transgender “female” could bear a child AFTER the change or a transgender “male” produced a child AFTER becoming “male,” I might be inclined to believe this stuff. THAT’S never happened…not even once.”

    And? A certain small percentage (but a larger percentage of the population than are transsexuals) of people without gender identity issues are physically incapable of reproduction. This fact does not render their sex non-existent.

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    1. Still, there are millions of fertile people who’ve never had sex “reassignment” and ZERO fertile people who have. Once sexual reassignment takes place, there has NEVER been an instance of that individual either bearing or fathering a child…not one.

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  20. “My point was that I recognize the fact that there are genetic males “out there” who, for some odd reason, sexually DESIRE other males…I’ve been propositioned by a few of them in my youth. My question is, WHY?”

    The way their brain is wired from birth, in almost every case. In VERY rare instances you find one who’s just so addicted to extreme sexual experience that they will do or try pretty much anything for a new “high” (which is a function of addiction behavior, not sexual orientation) but those are the exceptions.

    “Human anatomy is NOT designed for male-on-male sex OR female-on-female sex, for that matter. What’s the “attraction?” Just because a bodily orifice exists does NOT mean that one MUST poke one’s Johnson into it.”

    Of course not. and yet hetero males are all too willing to put their “johnson” into the female mouth or anus and most of those who object to homosexuality see no problem with that. Isn’t that inconsistent?

    In any case, the attraction is NOT built around “a hole! Let’s stick something in it!!”” Any more than your attraction to your wife is built around the fact that she offers convenient access to a vagina.

    Rather, their attraction is the same sort as yours, they are attracted to the PERSON, their smile, their sense of humor, their compassion, whatever…the use or non-use of whatever holes exist are nothing more than an accommodation to the physical limitations of the situation, not the object of the relationship.

    (and yes, there ARE gays who have casual physical encounters, just as there are heterosexuals who do likewise. shall we invoke the horny hetero male who will happily get an anonymous blow job from a woman he’d never be seen with in any other context? On both sides, these people are not representative of the whole)

    “If one is married and decides he (or she) is a “man (or woman) trapped in the body of the opposite sex” then undergoes “reassignment” surgeries, WHY would that person desire to CONTINUE a sexual relationship with his/her spouse?”

    Many don’t. There’s more to a good relationship than sex.

    “Wouldn’t that make him/her gay? What of his/her spouse? Wouldn’t that make HIM or HER gay, too? I’m sorry, but this issue is ‘way too complicated to make much sense.”

    Taking the male-to-female segment for example, studies vary in there results but somewhere between 40 and 60% of post-transition m2f identify as lesbian (thus putting the lie to the claim that a transsexual is merely a homosexual in deep denial)

    However, laying that aside – when a married individual transitions they couple may:

    1 remain a romantic AND sexual couple, with the partners deciding their love is strong enough to make an exception to their orientation (one couple I know, the wife said “I’m not a lesbian, I’m a hetero making an exception”)

    2. Remain a romantic couple who do not engage in sexuality (or alternately, have an open marriage on the sexual level) because they cannot get comfortable with a lesbian encounter.

    3. remain in a platonic “sisters/best friends” relationship built on their history and mutual affection, but freely date others.

    4. split amicably with mutual respect

    5. split acrimoniously because the spouse is unable to love and respect her spouse in spite of past professions of unconditional love. Or alternately, because the transitioning spouse insists on the freedom to “start over” despite having an understanding spouse.

    Point being, there’s no “one-size-fits-all” outcome. Couples find the place they can live with and move forward, just as couples placed in all sorts of other difficult situations do. Whether or not it “makes sense” to you carries no logical weight. life is messy, complicated, confusing. and not just when it comes to gender identity and sexuality. We all do the best we can with what we have to work with, and none of us are in a position to say to another “you are responsible to live a life I can put up with”

    I know, the knee-jerk response is “think of the children! what if my child or grandchild is exposed to your nonsense!?!?”\

    what if? nothing – that’s what if. kids are exposed to drunk uncles and they don’t necessarily become drunks, they are exposed to thieving peers and don’t necessarily become thieves, they are exposed to all sorts of unconventional things through the course of their life and do not necessarily parrot that behavior, conversely, some kids turn out unconventional themselves having lived an entirely straight-laced existence. How do you explain, for instance, an Amish kid who declares themselves to be gay? It happens.

    so in the final analysis, don’t assume that just because it’s hard for you to process it is therefore not legitimate.

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  21. ” However, we know that about 2% of the population (any population, despite what the Iranian President thinks) is gay.”

    Indeed. And only something like .1% is transsexual.
    (VERY hard number to pin down, BTW)

    “I’m sorry, but “gayness” and “feelings of being assigned the wrong sexual identity” ARE remarkably similar.”

    In origin? Yes. In effect. Not remotely. In fact, some of the least tolerant of trans people around are gays. They don’t understand or relate to gender identity issues any more than you do, as a rule. If they are accepting it’s on the basis of “fellow travelers on the road of being discriminated against” rather than understanding how it feels.

    also, as noted above, there’s no correlation at all between what you are attracted to and gender dysphoria. some who transition actually shift orientation, some don’t. I believe you suffer from too-narrow a field of view, in that you define all human relationships by the rubric of who’s sticking what in which hole.

    ” Putting aside, for the moment, the extraordinarily rare instances of hermaphroditic births,”

    Roughly as rare as being transsexual. The word, though, is intersex…and frankly, logic suggests that being trans is merely a subcategory of being intersex…just with a different region of the body affected by the “defect”

    ” what is it that makes one psychologically “female” or “male?” It’s, in essence, to which sex one is sexually attracted.”

    Not REMOTELY. For reasons already mentioned and more. A certain percentage of the population, both cis and trans, are in fact asexual – they have no sexual desire for either gender. does these people then lack a biological sex? Gay men do not AT ALL which to be perceived as women (in fact, some of them LOATH women and would consider it no greater insult than to be thought one) while others mimic women for parody sake (drag queens)

    On the other hand, a very significant portion of lesbians have no use for men in any sense and would vomit at the idea of BEING one.

    I’m sorry, your reasoning is entirely too heavily driven by a focus on the sexual act.

    “In other words, who do you want to have sex WITH? Or, at the very least, which sex do you want to share your life with?”

    How do you reconcile your view with the fact that there is no consistent pattern of behavior on that point? limiting the sample to the M2F transsexual, post transition, the range of behavior is wildly diverse. There’s no correlation that suggests that sexual activity, if it exists at all, has any relationship to self perception.

    Speaking from personal experience, without going into too much detail in an already too-long post, I assure you that your thesis is hopelessly flawed. if I had been offered a deal whereby i might complete a successful transition but the price i must pay is to cease all sexual activity, and to never have intimate feelings for any other person again, i would have made that deal – and still would. it’s not “Plan A” but it is an indication of priorities.

    ” Personally, I’ve never understood a guy looking at another guy’s hairy ass and thinking “Gee, I want some of THAT!” To me, that’s as insane as someone hungering to cut out another’s heart and eat it. I realize that some guys HAVE such feelings, but I don’t think I’ll EVER “understand” them. Maybe Tammy can cast some light on it for me.”

    In short? “Understanding” how it feels is not necessary. i’ll you need to understand is that there’s a huge variety of humanity and some of it can’t be understood without experiencing it. for instance, do you understand what it’s like to be autistic? Bi-polar? even insane? no, unless you ARE these things, you don’t know and cannot imagine what it’s like to think and feel as they do.

    What makes you a mature and wise human being is whether or not you accept that limitation and show respect and compassion ANYWAY, or whether you conclude that this which you cannot understand is therefore not valid and only a fiction.

    I have no illusion that anyone who is not themselves trans can possibly imagine what it’s like in my head. i’m just looking for the folks who can wrap their minds around the objective proven facts and accept that, in spite of their inability to “relate”, that the condition in question is real – as real as being autistic, or having cancer, or being a redhead – and respect the individual who has that condition.

    It involves, at the very least, a willingness to question the traditions of society, as we have done throughout human history (e.g, race relations for the most recent obvious example)

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    1. “There’s no correlation that suggests that sexual activity, if it exists at all, has any relationship to self perception.”
      Then WHY go through surgical mutilation at all? Does one have to have a vagina to feel like a “real” woman? Does one have to have an ersatz penis to feel like a “real” man? If so, and sexual activity isn’t an issue, why have the surgeries?

      I’m perfectly willing to accept that these people exist and have every right to “pursue happiness.” I don’t quarrel with that in the least. If all the LGBT “community” wished for was acceptance, I wouldn’t have the least quarrel with them, but you and I BOTH know that’s not what’s going on in this country. Have you SEEN an “LGBT Pride Parade?” I have, and there’s little that I’ve seen in my life that’s more offensive. This is the ONLY segment of our society that self-identifies based solely on HOW and with whom they choose to have sex.

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  22. “Then WHY go through surgical mutilation at all? ”

    A. I take exception to the use of the term mutilation, and that seems to be purposefully disrespectful. A nose job or breast implants are not considered “mutilation. Likewise, taking a fully functional set of male plumbing and turning it into a fully functional (reproduction aside) set of female plumbing (and if you think said plumbing is subpar then you are lacking in accurate information) is NOT “mutilation” unless one considers the male item inherently superior in the first place.

    B. Because your body is about MORE THAN HAVING SEX! How long are you going to frame EVERY thought that passes your mind in terms of having sex? I’m sorry, I don’t mean to get upset but come on – if you were never going to have sex again (for whatever reason) would you then be completely placid about having your penis and testicles remove since they serve no other purpose?

    C. why does a woman who lost here breasts to cancer often seek to have them restored via plastic surgery? Because a person needs bodily integrity if it can be achieved. I want my body to LOOK like a woman’s body, as my brain insists it should, even if only i ever see it. Because it’s a simple matter of inner peace with one’s self.

    “Does one have to have a vagina to feel like a “real” woman? Does one have to have an ersatz penis to feel like a “real” man? ”

    Yes. There are, of course, those among us who have to make peace with falling short of that due to circumstances beyond our control (economics, other health issues) but it is making peace in the same sense that a person who’s lost a leg makes peace with their body being less than whole. give them a chance to put a flesh and blood leg back on that stump and the answer is always YES!

    Ditto the trans person. if we have the chance to be made RIGHT as our mind perceives the rightness, then that’s a slam dunk “yes.” Not for what we might DO with the theoretical vagina, but because we are SUPPOSED to have one. it’s personal bodily integrity on the most basic level.

    ” Have you SEEN an “LGBT Pride Parade?” I have, and there’s little that I’ve seen in my life that’s more offensive.”

    In my conversations, i find that the majority of L/G people are quite embarrassed by those events. Or at least, by some participants. Truth is, a lot of them are a bit trapped on that issue.

    Let me illustrate. one of the big discussions in the trans community, as equal rights are advocated for, is the discussion of the so-called “transgender umbrella”. This is, in the interest of maximizing the number of potentially injured parties for the sake of political activism (which, by the way, is the only reason the prominent L/G folks bother with the “T” at all – pumping up the number of “victims”) some advocate the inclusion of EVERY sort of “gender non-conforming” behavior, up to and including drag queens.

    Others among us rightly observe that a gay man in drag (e.g. RuPaul) has nothing at all to do with transsexualism and including him and those like him under “trans” seriously clouds the issue. This is my position. but when we say that we get accused of being elitist and classifying others as “not trans enough”

    Similarly, a lot of gay folks find the stunts at those parades very embarrassing, but feel obliged to not be heard criticizing their fellow gays.

    one things is certain, the number of gay folks who would NEVER be caught dead acting like those you saw do outnumber those who would be a gigantic margin.

    ” This is the ONLY segment of our society that self-identifies based solely on HOW and with whom they choose to have sex.”

    Not really, no. Every time you distinguish yourself from gay people, you classify yourself based on your sexual orientation.

    Beyond that, they do NOT in fact say ANYTHING (identity wise) about HOW they have sex. They identify according to WHO they are attracted to…what they DO with said person is a matter of salacious speculation on the part of the non-participant.

    Again, with respect – try to think in terms that DON’T involve sex as the answer to every question.

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    1. Tammy, I will also submit this: to most guys, the thought of anything sharp coming NEAR their Johnson, let alone removing it for a reason other than imminent death, IS mutilation. I doubt anyone is trying to intentionally show you disrespect, but rather address the issue from THEIR point of view. I would hope no one is being intentionally antagonistic.

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      1. True, Nicki. However, I recognize that SOME times, “plastic surgery” is desirable. My own sister had a radical mastectomy on her right breast in the early 90’s. As she was coming out of the anesthesia, I told her that I’d found her a part-time job at Hooters which she cussed me about for making her laugh. She was OFFERED an implant–which she declined–and a couple of years later, had to undergo the same procedure on the other side. Being naturally well-endowed, it affected her self-image fairly drastically, but she survived and even thrived. She’s alive today because she opted to do those surgeries…for which I’m grateful. I’ve had my eyelids surgically altered because they were starting to droop and affect my vision. Would I rather NOT to have been subjected to EITHER surgery? Of course…but my sister’s and mine were both NECESSARY. Hers to save her life and mine to improve my quality of life because being unable to read any longer would be like cutting my own throat. But, when you talk about whacking off one’s Johnson in order to “look” like a woman, it sends shivers up and down my spine.

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  23. “Still, there are millions of fertile people who’ve never had sex “reassignment” and ZERO fertile people who have. Once sexual reassignment takes place, there has NEVER been an instance of that individual either bearing or fathering a child…not one.”

    I can’t see how that matters in the slightest way. Particularly not as a concern of a third party. I can relate to the trans person who delays transition in order to parent a child or whatever, but I can see no vested interest in a third party saying “you can’t father a child so you are unworthy!!!”

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  24. “Tammy, I will also submit this: to most guys, the thought of anything sharp coming NEAR their Johnson, let alone removing it for a reason other than imminent death, IS mutilation.

    Indeed. And does not THAT alone argue that M2F SRS is NOT something a MAN would ever do?

    “. However, I recognize that SOME times, “plastic surgery” is desirable….…but my sister’s and mine were both NECESSARY. Hers to save her life and mine to improve my quality of life ”

    So why are you so eager to reject my testimony that for people with my condition, replacing an unwanted, often detested penis with a vagina improves OUR “quality of life”? Do you feel that your choice of surgery on your eyes should be subject to the review and approval of other people? Or do you expect that civilized people respect your personal bodily integrity and your right to make your own choices as concerns it? Would you be happy if people ROUTINELY held long discussions about the ethics of your choices with the implication you had “mutilated” yourself?

    ” it affected her self-image fairly drastically, but she survived and even thrived. She’s alive today because she opted to do those surgeries”

    A shockingly high percentage of trans people who see no hope of transition take their own lives. It is, in point of fact, a life-saving process for most of us. I’m 49 now, I went full-time 3.5 years ago. I can testify with great confidence that had i not done so, i would be dead today or very very close. We literally, in many (not EVERY) case CANNOT find the will to live if we have to go on in the wrong body.

    Do you have to UNDERSTAND that? No. But I would hope you could be compassionate and accepting of that which you do not understand. That doesn’t seem too much to ask.

    “Would I rather NOT to have been subjected to EITHER surgery? Of course…”

    Indeed. likewise. You know what? I’ll bet her surgery was covered by insurance, assuming she had any – good chance yours was too.

    Me? Here’s what i have to look forward to:

    Hair removal – $5-10k depending
    HRT – done with medical supervision, several hundred dollars a year until surgery
    BA – (I may be fortunate enough to grow my own but most struggle with that) something like $8k
    SRS – minimum of $18 k once you factor in travel and so forth and often half again more, not counting time off from work.
    FFS (Facial Feminization surgery) i do not anticipate doing this, but many of us are so masculinized in the fact that they have to in order to get out of the “freak show” mode in terms of how people react to them) costs about as much as SRS.

    The fun part? in the VAST majority of cases, if we are fortunate enough to be insured (I’m not), NONE of this is covered.

    I work at Walmart and make less than $15k a year. I BARELY support my family. Where’s that money coming from? Every day i have to convince myself to get out of bed and chase the tiny, faint, pinprick of light at the end of the tunnel that somehow, some way, i’ll be able to do just a little of that.

    As we speak, I do my HRT without medical supervision, which involves some risk to my health (even a non-zero risk of death) – but to NOT do it is certain death.

    Again, i’m not asking you to understand, or to relate – i’m asking you to accept that things which you do not understand are still, nevertheless, legitimate.

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    1. Again, I’m perfectly willing to accept the fact that you were not comfortable with being a male. Live your life however you wish.

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