Back in the late 1980s, Disney began airing commercials that spawned a catch-phrase. After a Super Bowl or other major sports event, someone would ask the champion what his plans were and he’d holler out “I’m going to go to Disney World [or Disneyland]!”
I thought of that commercial when I heard about Bradley Manning’s announcement now that he’s been convicted.
“So, Bradley, you’ve just been sent to prison for 39 years! What are you going to do next?”
As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning, I am a female.”
No, Bradley, you are not a female. When you have died and your skeleton and DNA are all that remains, science will identify you as a man. What you are is deeply confused. Just as those athletes are going to Disneyland, you’ve just announced that you’re retreating to your own private fantasy world. The only difference is that you’re going to get the taxpayer to pay for your vacation from reality.
I’ve been hammering at this point for a long time — namely, that biology is not some imaginary construct. It’s real and cannot be wished away. Yet that is precisely what our Progressive culture is trying to do. Kevin D. Williamson has absolutely the best analysis I’ve ever seen of the Leftist belief that “wishing can make it so” when it comes to “gender identity”:
We have created a rhetoric of “gender identity” that is disconnected from biological sexual fact, and we have done so largely in the service of enabling the sexual mutilation of physically healthy men and women (significantly more men) by medical authorities who should be barred by professional convention if not by conscience from the removal of healthy organs (and limbs, more on that later), an act that by any reasonable standard ought to be considered mutilation rather than therapy. This is not to discount the feelings of people who suffer from gender-identity disorders — to the contrary, those feelings must be taken into account in determining courses of treatment for people who have severe personality disorders. But those subjective experiences do not render inconsequential the biological facts: A man who believes he is a woman trapped in a man’s body, no matter the intensity of his feeling, is no such thing. The duty of the medical profession is not to encourage and enable delusions, but to help those who suffer from them to cope with them. It is worth noting here that as a matter of law and a matter of social expectation, the fiction of sex change is treated as the paramount good: We are not expected to treat those who have undergone the procedure as men who have taken surgical and hormonal steps to impersonate women (or vice versa) but as people who have literally changed sex, which they have not — no more than Dennis Avner, the famous “Stalking Cat” who attempted to physically transform himself into a tiger, changed species.
Please note that Williamson is not hostile to people who feel a disconnect between brain and body. Instead, he is hostile to a society that rejects reality wholesale in an effort to make a very small minority of people comfortable. (If you’re thinking “The Emperor’s New Clothes” here, you’re on the right track.) The other thing you should note is that many people who undergo gender identity, despite achieving their dream of looking like a person of the opposite sex, are still unhappy. Their discomfort with their old body was a symptom of some deeper psychological disturbance, and a little slice and dice on the operating table (not to mention dangerous hormone treatments) won’t change that more profound despair.
This government-mandated societal delusion is costly. The intangible cost is that it creates massive cognitive dissonance in an up-and-coming generation that is being trained to deny reality. It’s also costly because insurance companies are pressured to pay for gender delusion treatments. Heck, even prisons are now paying. This means that you, the taxpayer, will pay for “Ms.” Manning to get special “gender re-assignment” treatment in prison. All of which caused a wonderfully snarky friend of mine to send me an email with his own plea for “re-assignment”: “If the gov’t is required to pay for prisoner’s trans-gender therapies, which I understand cost an average of $20,000, then they are also required to pay for my trans-ethnic reassignment therapy too. Since I identify as Polynesian, I will need money for my tanning therapy, hair treatments, and for me to learn a Polynesian language.”
Following my friend’s quite reasonable take on the government’s insistence that everyone must pay so that we’re free to be whatever we want (free because someone else will pay if we claim victim status), I’m pretty darn sure that I’m Claudia Schiffer trapped in a short, only moderately-attractive, middle-aged woman’s body. Put another way, my real identity is super model, not soccer mom. This disconnect (or, to use a fancy term, body dysmorphia) causes me profound mental anguish. I’m subject to age-ism and look-ism inconsistent with my true identity, and daily battle the glances of myself that the mirror reveals. I have a right to be whole. I recognize that I’ll always be short, but I think it will take only about $100,000 in plastic surgery (facelift, cheek implants, jaw implants, hair weaves, breast implants, butt implants, a little bit of liposuction, colored contact lenses, wardrobe consultations, etc) in order for me to look as my mental self-image tells me I should look:
Natan Sharansky, the former Russian dissident and current Israeli citizen, wrote about one of the hallmarks of a totalitarian society: its mandate (enforced with fines, imprisonment, and even death) that all citizens accept government statements of fact as true even when the citizens’ own senses prove absolutely that the government’s imposed reality are false. People cease to believe in their government, which is manifestly lying to them; they become cynical; and, eventually, they become desperate to end the cognitive dissonance that makes it impossible for them to deal with the real problems and issues they face in their lives. At that point, of course, drink, drugs, and revolution all become reasonable options.