Transgendered People Befuddle the Religious Right.

In its ongoing effort to isolate and condeme groups, the religious right seems ready for an all out demonization of transgendered people.  There are efforts to pass legislation about which bathrooms schools designate for transgendered children.

The reason for this hysteria is the difficulty in understanding a reality not discussed in the Bible.  The Bible talks of male and female.  If a person is both, the right’s source of truth simply labels it sin.

So far as we know, there have always been transgendered people.  There have been humans that did not clearly see themselves as either men or women and who saw themselves change their self identity over time.  That the Jewish/Christian faith did not treat this fact as a part of the human experience we should celebrete is a weakness.

Whether trans children use girls’ or boys’ rest rooms is not the least bit important.  What is important is we do not allow rejection of such people.  We need to include every category of human beings and harness the energy and creative talents of each.  To do otherwise is to lus all worse off.

Today, and every Sunday for a long while, conservative preachers would make productive use of their pulpits.  They should preach that humans are not all completely female or male in spite of what the Bible says.

There are those not completely either and we should be greatful they are among us.

http://www.religiondispatches.org/dispatches/candacechellew-hodge/7258/the_religious_right_s_new_target__transgender_people/

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About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years. There is more about me at Wikipedia.com.
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21 Responses to Transgendered People Befuddle the Religious Right.

  1. Michael Ross says:

    I have the DNA and parts of a man but today I feel like a woman. I can the use the woman’s locker room. In California I can. Can it get any more insane than this?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPuaUrd8bUQ&feature=player_detailpage

    • Avatar of realist realist says:

      Yeah, that happens all the time. Men feeling like women and wanting to use the women’s locker room is among the biggest problems faced by gyms nationwide. Now that’s insane.

  2. Henry says:

    Jon: “Transgendered People Befuddle the Religious Right.”

    I guess the “religious right” also have good company, Mr. Mac.

    http://redriverfreethinkers.areavoices.com/2013/03/18/transgendered-people-and-religion/#comment-201904

    Definitely befuddled.

  3. Brad says:

    The Religious Right always has to have an enemy to fight, and a scapegoat to blame for everything wrong. Once they lose a battle with one enemy, they move on to someone else.

    • Avatar of realist realist says:

      You’re right. Can you think of any minority group that the far right doesn’t have a beef with? Maybe left-handed people, but now that I think about it, don’t some think left-handers are inspired by the devil? Gotta be against them.

  4. Beau Weber says:

    “in spite of what the Bible says.”?

    Are you then advocating that a preacher should speak contrary to the Word of God (on whatever topic) if it seems contrary to your own worldly wisdom?

    By definition that person would cease to be a preacher of The Lord’s.

    • Wolfy32 says:

      The bible I don’t think spoke anything about transgender people…

      • Michael Ross says:

        Men and women are to be distinct in many ways. Here are two:

        “Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him, 15but if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her? For her hair is given to her for a covering. 16But if one is inclined to be contentious, we have no other practice, nor have the churches of God.” (1 Corinthians 11:14-15)

        “A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD your God.” (Deuteronomy 22:5)

        Function in the home, church, and society are others. Male headship. female subordination. These are biblical patterns. Any society that loses sight of these is headed for collapse. How much time do you think we have left?

        • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

          Michael 8:33 “These are biblical patterns.”

          That’s my point. There is no room is some Christian thinking for gender ambiguity. Yet, the real world is full of it. Always has been there but Bibical writers chose to ignore its presense amoung them for whatever their own reasons were. Conservative politicans refuse to admit it’s there for their own purposes.

          It was not that long ago when interracial marriage was a religious and political taboo. After while it, too, became ambiguous because of millions of “black” children fathered by slave owners.

          To keep genders completely separate, the religious right has its work cut out.

          • Henry says:

            Jon:“Always has been there but Bibical writers chose to ignore its presense amoung them for whatever their own reasons were.”

            Perhaps. This could have been a function of societal practice taking care of the issue before it could be commented on. There were on occasion eunuchs riding around in chariots.

  5. Wolfy32 says:

    Well, like gays, I don’t think transgender is really a religious issue. It may be a social issue, which includes religious perception, however, it’s not onlya religious issue.

    Why is it not possible that men are born with a genetically structured female brain?

    We know males and females have different brain structures. and just as gender can change in the womb from female to male in physical parts. Why would it not be possible that the brains maybe don’t catch up? Maybe the genetic component for brains gets stuck and one is left stuck as a female, or vise versa.

    There’s all kinds of genetic mutations, from two headed people, to 11 toed people. Why is it so wrong that a brain structure maybe didn’t align with the physical make up.

    Much of the bible was spent accepting the social outcasts. The leopers, or others that were different. And now the bible is used for the complete opposite. To support making those that are different to continue to be outcasts.. What if transgender people were just leopers? Would we still think of them as outcasts?

    Ostrasizing is not anything new generated from religion. Religion is just another tool to support weeding out the genetic mutations. I believe in this case religion is used to support Darwinian theory.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Wolfy32 3:49 “Much of the bible was spent accepting the social outcasts. The leopers, or others that were different.”

      Interesting–I had exactly the opposite impression, writers went out of their way to demononize those who were different through no fault of their own.

      Lev 21: 17-23 he who hath blemish; he shall not come nigh to the bread of his God…that he profain not my sanctuaries.”

      • Jinx says:

        Jesus was far more accepting of those who were different than the rest of the yahoo’s in the bible. I love the Ghani quote that roughly goes ” I like your Christ, he is so unlike your christians” Whether you believe Jesus is a god or just a damn good prophet, he seems like a humanist.

      • StanB says:

        Jon, make up your mind please. You yourself have said that Jesus seemed to accept outsiders so Jesus would be tolerant of gays.

        You argue both sides of the issue too often to be credible.

    • Jinx says:

      Wolfy, you hit the mark! The physically female but genetically male embryo begins to physically change to male around 6 weeks due to what physiologists call an ‘androgen bath’….and the brain begins to change to a male as well. Any mediating factors, from inherited genes and gene switches to poor nutrition and/or environmental exposure to medicines, alcohol, heavy metals, etc. can stop and start this bath. The result is hermaphrodites, transgenders, gay, lesbian, etc. There is considerable cross disciplinary real science research supporting this no matter what Henry and M.R. and other like them think…….it is all about the brain and its hormone bath!

      • Henry says:

        Jinx:“The result is hermaphrodites, transgenders, gay, lesbian, etc.”
        If the embryo supposedly has these distinct GLTB identities from the “bath”, then can the embryo be ethically aborted? There seems to be acceptance of these distinct, supposedly well-formed identities, but rejection of the more obvious human identity.

        What I am hearing seems to be more from a politically influenced agenda than from science or medical ethics.

        • Wolfy32 says:

          Henry, we’re not debating abortion at this point. There is an arguement there, but, that’s just going to confuse the current discussion. The point at this time, is there is genetic factors, that people have no control of, the bible is unable to explain and / or accept or reject.

          • Henry says:

            Thanks, Moderator Wolf. The genetic factors was a digression from the original topic. I am continuing on with that digression, questioning the inconsistency of weight assessed to the genetic factors. However, you are now crying foul.

      • Henry says:

        Jinx: “There is considerable cross disciplinary real science research supporting this no matter what Henry and M.R.”

        Please don’t forget or exclude our good friend Mac.

      • Wolfy32 says:

        I agree Jinx. There is the possibility that our “sin” of curiousity / seeking knowledge, and becoming sentient, has most likely led to the corruption of our genetic code over time. After all, if we had remained pure in terms of animals vs. sentient creatures, we would probably not have developed metals, or alcohol, or signals that bombard us daily etc.

        The mutations of nature are things outside of our control now that these things are all normal parts of our lives.. I believe Christ is fully about acceptance.. Yes the old testament is about rejection and only accepting the elite. However, Christ be he man or God, was tired of it all and sought to change it. I think it changed for a while, but, desciples were quick to bring things back similar to the way they were once Christ was gone. Some things changed, much did not.

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