There is a very small percentage of humans who are genuinely gender-conflicted. People with hermaphroditism and other obvious physical or genetic problems in uncomfortable scenarios are part of our human family. We must honour their value, and respect their dignity.
But the rest of us, a vast majority, have a different problem. We are allowing political correctness to dilute the objectivity of gender, and idolising the right for each individual to freely choose. Gender is becoming fluidly subjective. What ideology drives this? Freedom is one of the rights of humanity. So is being whatever you put your mind to be. But when we venture to redefine ourselves contrary to the evidence, we venture onto dangerous ground. Gender is being relegated to simply a lifestyle choice based on feelings. You are whatever you feel, and it’s subjective.
In May this year, paediatrician Professor John Whitehall urged caution when considering whether young people should be allowed to undergo sex-change. “It’s a dangerous fad,” he said, “fuelled by powerful ideologies”. I agree.
Marriage is also become subjective. In Australia, marriage is currently “man and woman”. There is mounting pressure to simplify this to “human and human”. Some are even questioning why we are limiting it to merely two in the relationship - why not polyamory? or even human-animal marriage? Marriage is losing its meaning, lacking an objective boundary to define it.
What do we say to “transabled” people like Jewel Shuping, who in 2008 used drain cleaner to become the blind person she felt that she should be? How do we help a “transracial” like Rachel Dolezal? Can a “trans-age” adult enrol at preschool if they feel young? Can a child buy alcohol because they feel they’re old enough? How far should we go to facilitate a human’s belief that they are a cat, or a helicopter?
Somewhere along the way, we must accept that there are objective ways of defining ourselves and our relationships. Isaiah warns us, “What sorrow for those who say that evil is good and good is evil, that dark is light and light is dark, that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter.” Isaiah 5:20. Our loving designer, God, tries to prevent the sorrow that awaits us outside of the Biblical boundaries of gender and marriage. Imagination is not the sole determiner of reality. Truth trumps illusion. We need objectivity.