Canadian father jailed after publicly objecting to minor daughter taking testosterone

"A father who has long objected to his minor daughter taking testosterone as part of an experimental gender transition has been jailed in British Columbia for contempt of court." - C.Post

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Bert Perry's picture

Mom and social services and some doctors are in favor, Dad is vehemently against this.  I don't have a "ringside seat" to all this, thank God, but suffice it to say that I can only pray that if anyone is pushing an agenda here with this poor girl, that they will have reasons to repent very quickly.  

I'm torn on this.  Apart from everyone continuing in most regards as they were called to Christ and "God created them male and female", I can't see an explicit Biblical prohibition of voluntarily transitioning, as much as the notion of destroying healthy body parts (especially private parts) horrifies me.  Forcible castration a la the harems of the Ottoman Empire was a cruel sin that deprived people of the possibility of family life and their gender/sexual identity; but that's not what the person who transitions today seems to want.

But that said, if someone is mis-diagnosed as gender disphoric, than that falls pretty close to the Ottoman harems in terms of moral issues.  It also strikes me that those who are victimized by that just might not take that gently--and arguably, they shouldn't.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

josh p's picture

When you say this:
“ I can't see an explicit Biblical prohibition of voluntarily transitioning, as much as the notion of destroying healthy body parts (especially private parts) horrifies me.”

Do you mean that you can’t see a biblical reason to try and implement laws against it or that you don’t think the Bible prohibits transitioning?

Bert Perry's picture

Josh, I'm by no means in support of transitioning--it horrifies me--but in wrestling with the Scriptures, I'm not yet coming up with what I consider a good, tight argument against it beyond "male and female He created them" and 1 Cor. 7's admonition to continue the state wherein one is called.  Maybe that's sufficient and I don't realize it yet, but it strikes me that the debate is coming to our churches, and I'd better be prepared.

And I'm stuck.  So show me what I missed!  :^)

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

josh p's picture

I'm thinking the prohibitions against effeminate behavior as well as a woman wearing a man's clothes would be quite clear (I realize that we are talking the mosaic law there but the principle reflects something intrinsic). The assumption there being, they are defying their God-given gender. But yes "male and female" is enough I believe. 

Bert Perry's picture

....within the limitations of "how does the Torah actually apply here?"  So here's what I see:

1.  God created them male and female.  Absolutely--but if transition surgery/other measures are intrinsically wrong, why doesn't Christ condemn even the Harem-style castration He refers to in Matthew 19:12?

2.  "that which pertaineth to a woman..."  Again, a hint that sex is immutable, but unless we want to prohibit cutting the corners of our beards and bacon cheeseburgers, we need to have a little bit of restraint in how we apply the Torah, no?

3. Matthew 7--probably the best argument IMO, that we ought to stay in the state where God assigned us, but even there, our detractors are going to point out that slaves are free to try to buy their freedom, and those who need to marry are free to leave their single state.  No?

We might argue that general revelation has some good arguments against this, starting with the revulsion that most people have with the notion of bottom surgery--or for F-M trans, the top surgery.  You then have the reality that these things are permanent, disfiguring, and eliminate the possibility of normal family life--it's hard to "be fruitful and multiply" if your testes or ovaries are in a biohazard bag.

Finally, we've got the reality--one trans person contested this one on this site a few weeks back--that when they try to measure the effectiveness of surgical therapies for gender dysphoria, they've yet to find any measurable benefits.  So the question "you did what to yourself for bupkus?" comes to mind.

Or, perhaps we ought to consider it in the views of the ancients, where their version of "bottom surgery" was often lethal due to infection, and was generally a means of subjugation.  The notion that someone would do that to themselves (apart from Origen I guess) would have been seen as preposterous.

(it's a bit like abortion that way--the ancients practiced a lot of infanticide, but given their surgical infection rates, the notion that someone would risk an unnecessary surgery was absurd to them....hence we don't see clear prohibitions against abortion per se)

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

josh p's picture

1. "Male and female" is not mosaic law so is therefore normative for all of mankind. As far as why Christ didn't address castration- His purpose was not to correct social evils. There are a whole host of social injustices He did not address. 

2. Yes I agree this is not open and shut. I have had this conversation with the "It's sinful for women to wear pants" crowd many times. I think it's clear however that the principle remains even if the application varies. 

3. Matt. 7 is indeed clear. I'm not sure if I understand your point about slaves but slavery is wrong. "Identifying" with the gender that God made you is both good and right. 

Yes your point about "Be fruitful and multiply" is good and also not strictly mosaic. It was commanded to Adam as well as Noah upon exiting the Ark. It is universal in scope. 

I do think there is a fairly interesting comparison with abortion because it's not overtly outlawed (unless memory fails me). However, murder is because God made them in His image. At the same time He made them "male and female." Gender is foundational to Adam and Eve and their progeny as they serve together to glorify God. 

Lastly, I think 1 Cor. 11 has something to say here. In that passage, Paul makes clear that gender has implications even in the way that worship is conducted in the local church. He even talks about how "nature itself"  teaches that a man should not have long hair and that it's a dishonor for a woman to shave her head (no I don't believe that has anything to do with prostitution). 
Basically, I believe the Bible is very clear on the issue but one has to look at the whole of the scripture to make the most solid case possible.