From the Daily Telegraph, March 15:
Norrie May-Welby, 48, was born a man but had a sex change operation in 1990, at the age of 28.
After becoming unhappy as a woman, May-Welby decided to become a "neuter". The 48-year-old is now officially recognised as a person of no specific gender....
May-Welby emigrated to Australia at the age of seven after being born in Paisley, Renfrewshire.
Officials there altered the Briton's birth certificate to include the new no-gender classification after doctors were apparently unable to determine the sex of the expat's body.
May-Welby said: "The concepts of man or woman don't fit me. The simplest solution is not to have any sex identification."
Had s/he only changed his/her name to Pat....
This is someone (something?) just looking for attention. Sheesh.Posted by: Janet at March 17, 2010 2:44 PM
I do believe that transgendered people have many struggles & I have a great deal of compassion for them.Posted by: CC at March 17, 2010 2:49 PM
I don't think this person was ever truly transgendered, in the "woman born in a man's body"/"man born in a woman's body" sense. Some people spend their entire lives, from very early childhood onward, feeling as though they should be the other sex. Surgery is a relief for them. This person...people having no gender is not normal. Even intersexed people are some combination of male and female.Posted by: Marauder at March 17, 2010 2:56 PM
"The concepts of man or woman don't fit me.."
Hmmm..I wonder if he (he was born a male folks..no matter what he does to himself) ever had a positive, male, role-model while growing up?Posted by: RSD at March 17, 2010 2:57 PM
God is not a God of confusion.Posted by: Phil Schembri is HisMan at March 17, 2010 3:01 PM
"This person...people having no gender is not normal"
come now, Marauder, we can't be making judgments about what is normal. How can we judge this man for disfiguring himself into a semblance of a woman and then...well, I don't want to speculate on what he did to further his transformation.
Suffice it to say, he remains a man despite his hideous voluntary mutilation. People tolerating the neurosis he exhibits is his biggest problem.
"are" his biggest problem. DRATPosted by: Neal at March 17, 2010 3:19 PM
Just a minor criticism: "gender" is not really the best word here. I would say that this is an individual of no specific SEX. "Gender" has more cultural connotations. People can certainly change gender roles without changing their sex!Posted by: Kelsey at March 17, 2010 3:25 PM
What are the four billion cells in his body stating he is? (Answer is in the question.)
It will be nice if we ever figure out a treatment fr this type of mental disorder.Posted by: JP Prichard at March 17, 2010 3:33 PM
When I was a little kid I wanted to grow up to be a fire engine.
Apparently I can live out that dream if I still wanted it.Posted by: Cranky Catholic at March 17, 2010 3:51 PM
So..in Australia they cater to mentally messed-up people by allowing them to be 'genderless'. Here in the U.S. we cater to the mentally messed up by giving them Nobel Prizes for no reason and making them the first black President. :)Posted by: Pamela at March 17, 2010 4:13 PM
"unable to determine the sex of the expat's body"
Did they look at his/her junk? Seems like a logical first step.Posted by: Nulono at March 17, 2010 4:28 PM
The thought that comes to mind is the scene where Indiana Jones is confronted with whirlin dervish of a man with a sword in his hands and Jones does not have the time or the inclination to indulge the fellow in hand to hand combat of any kind so he just pulls out his gun and shoots the dude and continues on his way.
I would rather invest my time and energy speculating about why Mona Lisa has that 'smirk' on her face.
Maybe Mona Lisa was a crossdresser.
yor bro kenPosted by: kbhvac at March 17, 2010 4:53 PM
no matter what these poor people do, they can't change their DNA chromosomes. That's what determines who they are at conception, no matter how many "special" operations they have.Posted by: LizFromNebraska at March 17, 2010 5:01 PM
"Even intersexed people are some combination of male and female." -Marauder
As someone who IS intersexed (and thank you for using the term for ourselves that we prefer) I can say that most of us feel distinctly the gender in which we are raised... though a large minority would say that they feel they are both... or neither. Sadly, this community of mine will suffer the most from the current "gay marriage" controversey... we stand to lose a right we already have... because our chromosomes or gonads do not match our outward appearance.Posted by: Maria Krasinski at March 17, 2010 5:03 PM
I don't know a lot about gender changes, but I'm always very curious, as an anthropology junkie, how various people and cultures view gender. I wish that I could hear May-Welby's opinions in depth. :)
If you don't mind my asking, what does intersexed mean? :)Posted by: Vannah at March 17, 2010 5:08 PM
Didn't change the chromosomes, didn't change the sex, even if he did have the dangly bits cut off (twice, apparently).
The common phrase these days, which the doctors apparently bought into, is that "sex is between your legs, gender is between your ears."
I don't claim to have the right answer, but I'm not buying that formula. I do feel a lot of sorrow for this man, though. What an incredible amount of pain and expense he went through, in order to end up ... mutilated.Posted by: Bill at March 17, 2010 5:44 PM
Hi, Maria. I have some major love for PLAGAL. :D
Don't patronize me, Neal.Posted by: Marauder at March 17, 2010 7:30 PM
JR Prichard wrote: "What are the four billion cells in his body stating he is? (Answer is in the question.) It will be nice if we ever figure out a treatment fr this type of mental disorder."
And I hope we find out a treatment for the mental disorder of the religious intolerant buffoon.Posted by: Jake at March 17, 2010 7:31 PM
Janet: "This is someone (something?) just looking for attention. Sheesh."
...I think sex-change operations prove someone's looking for something a little more than attention. There are easier ways to garner attention...Posted by: bmmg39 at March 17, 2010 7:50 PM
Thankyou Phil...worth repeating. God is not a God of confusion! "Male and female created He them."
And for all his surgical nonsense if this man were to die and forensic investigators only had his skeleton to go by to identify him his bones would give many clues that said "MALE".Posted by: Sydney M. at March 17, 2010 8:36 PM
For those who hold as a religious tenet that it's impossible for people to be intersex because, say, "God isn't a God of confusion" -- We live in a fallen and imperfect world. Though most babies are born, as we would say, "within normal limits", some are missing a limb, or have an extra limb, or have malformed organs, etc. Why should the sex of the person be the only thing where it is impossible to have a congenital defect?
As far as I understand it, being intersex is a birth defect, just like amniotic banding syndrome or Turner's Syndrome. It's just very poorly understood and we have no clue as to the etiology.Posted by: Christina at March 17, 2010 10:22 PM
The difference between a man and woman is in the DNA. This DNA in this person contained a Y chromosome thus he is a man. Augmentation surgeries do not change that. Don't his doctors explain this to him? Your sex is not determined by your feelings or your actions. It is very clear from a scientific perspective.
And Hisman, you are correct that "God is not a God of confusion" and I would add thatPosted by: truthseeker at March 17, 2010 11:26 PM
I agree that "God is not a God of confusion".
I don't think God was confused when He chose to make this person a male.
I assume that all the male "parts" worked properly.
If it was a "mental" defect I don't see how removing her male parts would correct her brain function.
Let me state this again, "God is not a God of confusion".
So Christina, why are you so confused?Posted by: Phil Schembri is HisMan at March 17, 2010 11:58 PM
"For those who hold as a religious tenet that it's impossible for people to be intersex because, say, "God isn't a God of confusion" -- We live in a fallen and imperfect world. Though most babies are born, as we would say, "within normal limits", some are missing a limb, or have an extra limb, or have malformed organs, etc. Why should the sex of the person be the only thing where it is impossible to have a congenital defect?
"As far as I understand it, being intersex is a birth defect, just like amniotic banding syndrome or Turner's Syndrome. It's just very poorly understood and we have no clue as to the etiology."
I think that you are largely correct in your analysis. So too is Phil S.
We do live in a messed up and fallen world. I do not doubt that environmental toxins of our own making may well have led to genetic mutations which give rise to biochemical anomolies resulting in gender confusion. It's quite possible.
Equally possible is that our screwed up culture: one beset by the corrosive effects of radicalized autonomy, radical feminism and its war on men and boys, sexual licentiousness and 50% divorce rate have all produced a toxic soup in which men are confused about how to act, and have the ability to simply walk when the going gets tough.
Boys are left either without a father in the house, or all too often, one who is either a barbarian or a wimpy, permissive fool.
I'm more inclined toward the latter explanation that the biochemical. Either way, therapeutics ought to bring a person back to their most fundamental identity as the starting point, which is the chromosomally determined biological identity. It isn't very therapeutic to pander to a deranged individual's predilections. It's difficult enough trying to bring them around to an objective starting point.
I'm reminded of the old Groucho Marx joke about the man who sees a psychiatrist:
"So you see doctor, the problem is that my brother thinks he's a chicken."
"Have you told him he's not a chicken?"
"Because we need the eggs."
When we start mutilating deluded individuals, it's because WE need the eggs.Posted by: Gerard Nadal at March 18, 2010 12:24 AM
Why is May-Welby's surgery any of our business? This individual is not judging us or even concerned about our gender- why think about this individual's gender? What's important is recognizing the gifts and intelligence that this person has to offer- the body shouldn't be the topic of discussion so much as the contributions that this person has made and will make.Posted by: Vannah at March 18, 2010 12:32 AM
The point is we all fall short of God's glory. Blame the environment, blame the devil, blame whatever.......however, the problem is always with me, points to me, is a result of me.
God says if we seek Him with all our hearts we will find Him. Therein lies the solution to our fallen nature - restoration by a God who died for us and restored the Kingdom in all it's originally intended perfection by His Son's perfect life, death, and resurrection. The real challenge is whether or not we believe this or run to and fro pursuing "every wind of doctrine", opinion, procedure, prescription, ritual, mantra, etc., etc., etc.
This "it" is obviously so lost it chose to cut off, mutilate, and deny it's own sexual identity as a solution to its perceived problem. This is sick, perverted and an insult to a holy God, however, it is not unforgivable.
The real tragedy is that we have a medical/psychological/spiritual bastion of God-deniers that supported its decision.
Please, oh please, keep me away from these "prophets of Baal".
"Without faith it is impossible to please God".Posted by: Phil Schembri is HisMan at March 18, 2010 1:17 AM
In everyone's life there comes a time when we must grow up and learn the facts of life the primary one of which is that there is a God in Heaven who we will all answer to.
It therfore behooves each one of us to seek Him out to determine how He wants us to live. The answers to this are foound in His word.
Nowhere in His word do I see where cutting off one's genitals is a solution to one's sin problem. Now this is truth, take it or leave it.Posted by: Phil Schembri is HisMan at March 18, 2010 1:25 AM
It's very much our business because medicine has turned parasitic. Tortured souls are affirmed in their imprisonment by psychiatry while surgeons mutilate the body for tens of thousands of dollars. In San Francisco, public employees have this payed for with taxpayer dollars.
It says something about who we are, what we have become, and what direction we are headed in when we turn a blind eye toward this. The mental health field has been overrun by radical feminists who have decided that anything touching on gender role pathology or identity is not pathological.
In 1978 the APA decided that abortion is a good for women, and so will not recognize post-traumatic stress disorder as a function of abortion.
The contributions of the individual may or may not merit public approval or praise. What is essential here is why we no longer reach out with firmness and compassion to gender-confused individuals.
I maintain that radical feminism and the gay community would come in for a terrible condemnation if we started dealing with root causes. They and their lobbies run the show in so many fields.
What has been done to this poor soul is an outrage. Neither happy as male nor female, nothingness is now the basis of identification.
Let that sink in for a moment.
The radicals have NOTHINGNESS to offer as a solution. How terribly tragic, but altogether befitting who they are.Posted by: Gerard Nadal at March 18, 2010 1:29 AM
Gerard: How does is it "befitting who they are"? Are you trying to say that they're nothing?
As for the causes of being transgender, I have no doubt that there are some people who have serious psychological problems and want to be the other gender because they think there's something intrinsically wrong with the gender they were born. I also have no doubt that there are many transgender people who were raised in stable, loving homes, have nothing against other people of the gender they were born with, but have always felt that that gender does not represent who they are inside.
Some of the comments on this thread are indicative of why religion is not a good first line of defense when dealing with people who disagree with you. People who don't believe in God don't care what the Bible says. People who do believe in God but have different ideas about how He works don't appreciate being lectured at and condescended to. Saying things like "Why are you so confused?" and "Let that sink in for a moment" are condescending. They indicate that you assume that other people are ignorant or misguided because they came to a different conclusion than you did. You're using your religious beliefs to argue why you think this is wrong, and it's not working.
When it comes to pro-life arguments, the science is indisputable. Anyone who tries to claim that an embryo doesn't have separate DNA from either parent or that fetuses don't have beating hearts is going to look like an idiot, because it's obvious to anyone who bothers to look that both of those things are scientifically true. It is not obvious to anyone who bothers to look that being born transgendered and having an operation is fundamentally wrong. You don't have the science to argue that, for truly transgendered people, having a sex-change operation isn't the best solution.Posted by: Marauder at March 18, 2010 7:49 AM
My husband's tribe traditionally allowed intersexed men & women to live peacefully among them. Some were called "two spirited" and regarded as holy. Yes, I know all the religious fanatics will have a hey day with this one, but I tend to go in line with the tribe's teachings. Abortion is a no no but respecting all of God's creation is important.
Those who are casting stones need to take a look at their own lives. None of us are born perfect.
Posted by: CC at March 18, 2010 9:48 AM
Why refer to those religious who believe that this is immoral as "fanatics"? They are going with what their religion teaches, you are going with what your tribe teaches. Why would you not be considered a "tribal fanatic" believing that this is okay simply based on the fact that your tribe teaches it?Posted by: Bobby Bambino at March 18, 2010 9:56 AM
Oh, trust me, I can't recall how many discussions I've had with Christians who have said that Native people were wrong and buring in hell. You don't read a lot about Native people trying to shove their beliefs or religion on others. I am a Christian, but I don't believe it is my right to shove my religion on others that do not believe as I do. If we are to respect life, doesn't that mean everyone?
I never said that you could not believe that this is immoral. I am offering another perspective.Posted by: CC at March 18, 2010 10:29 AM
I appreciate your response, but it really doesn't address anything I said. I never claimed that you could not claim that religious people could not believe this is immoral. My only concern was with the use of the term fanatic. Religious people justify their belief about this situation by appealing to their religion. In your post, you justified your belief about this situation by appealing to your tribe's teachings. In both cases we have people appealing to higher authority to justify their position. Without any specific justifications of WHY one should trust in their particular teaching authority, why should one group of people be considered fanatical while the other is not?Posted by: Bobby Bambino at March 18, 2010 10:35 AM
CC--I always find it perplexing when people say "i'm a Christian but I don't want to shove my beliefs on others..."
Christ said "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel." Christ said to be "fishers of men"
If you are a Christian and you truly believe that Christ is the way to heaven...then WHY AREN'T you "shoving your beliefs down others throats"? Do you not believe that hell is real? Do you not believe there are lost souls all around you, damned and on their way to hell? What will you say at the Great White Throne Judgement when those transgendered individuals who rejected Christ see you standing behind the throne of Christ as they are throne into the lake of fire and scream at you "Why???? Why didn't you tell me about Christ's love and forgiveness????"
i want to tell everyone i know and meet that Christ is the way! Christ forgives sins!
You must not have any concern for other's souls if you can be silent. I don't get it.
I understand people will take the gospel and either accept it or reject it. That is their right as God gave man free will. But those that reject do so to their own detriment. That makes me sad.
I leave it to the Holy Spirit to convict but I will not be silent. I will disdain that which is unholy (such as genital mutilation and gender conflicts) and I will esteem that which is holy (God's Word). I will speak out simply and point to Christ as the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6)Posted by: Sydney M. at March 18, 2010 10:47 AM
Agreed, Sydney. Amen.Posted by: Bobby Bambino at March 18, 2010 10:49 AM
How on earth do you know transgendered people don't believe in God? Are you perfect, Sydney? You must be a saint! I can be a Christian & not shove my belief down someone's throat. When people do that, it turns others off. Just think about a person from another religion trying to get you to believe what they do. Do you accept their word or does it make you want to turn away from them. I always say example is the best way to teach.
Well, Bobby, I believe judging others and claiming they may not go to Heaven because of the way they live, the way they pray, worship, etc is a fanatic. Newsflash...there is a God & you ain't Him. I also don't like far-left people shoving the "green thing" down my throat either.Posted by: CC at March 18, 2010 11:17 AM
I'm sure there are transgendered people that believe in God CC. Satan believes in God too. Whats your point? Believing in God does NOT make you a Christian. REPENTANCE of sins and FAITH in Christ makes you a Christian.
No I am not perfect. Far from it. Bible says "For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God" Romans 3:23. That includes me.
but I repent of sin. I sin every day. I fail. But I repent. I urge others to repent also. That is not "shoving" my beliefs down someone elses throat. That is being the salt of the earth and the light on the hill...ya know, being what Christ commanded us to be. We should love transgendered people but that doesn't mean love their sin.Posted by: Sydney M. at March 18, 2010 11:23 AM
The thing is, Sydney, that however noble your intentions might be, you're not doing a good job of selling it.
"If you are a Christian and you truly believe that Christ is the way to heaven...then WHY AREN'T you "shoving your beliefs down others throats"? Do you not believe that hell is real? Do you not believe there are lost souls all around you, damned and on their way to hell? What will you say at the Great White Throne Judgement when those transgendered individuals who rejected Christ see you standing behind the throne of Christ as they are throne into the lake of fire and scream at you "Why???? Why didn't you tell me about Christ's love and forgiveness????""
This one doesn't work, "selling-it"-wise, for a whole multitude of reasons. The one that strikes me immediately is the assumption that transgendered people have rejected Christ. Why would you assume that? The qualifications for being a Christian are believing that Jesus is the Son of God, also God Himself, who died to save us from our sins, right? I don't see any conflict with believing that and also believing that transgendered people live happier lives after surgery.
Also, it comes across as though you're lecturing other Christias, which, trust me, is not going to make people willing to listen to you. Jesus didn't go right up to people and start telling them they were sinners and listing everything they were doing wrong. Jesus befriended sinners and brought them around to His teachings.
"i want to tell everyone i know and meet that Christ is the way! Christ forgives sins!
You must not have any concern for other's souls if you can be silent. I don't get it."
Apologies for the all caps, but I don't know how to bold or italicize here. BECAUSE THEY EITHER HAVE DIFFERENT BELIEFS FROM YOU, OR ARE ADVOCATING THOSE BELIEFS DIFFERENTLY.
"I understand people will take the gospel and either accept it or reject it. That is their right as God gave man free will. But those that reject do so to their own detriment. That makes me sad.
I leave it to the Holy Spirit to convict but I will not be silent. I will disdain that which is unholy (such as genital mutilation and gender conflicts) and I will esteem that which is holy (God's Word). I will speak out simply and point to Christ as the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6)"
You were doing great with the compassion in the first paragraph, but you lost the sense that you were being compassionate in the second. You seem to be operating under the mindset that transgender people choose to have these conflicts. Feelings aren't sinful, at least in my branch of Christianity. If you dwell on rage, that might be sinful, but not the fact that you got mad at someone in the first place.
You don't come across as "help people find their way to Jesus." You come across as "speak out righteously against sin and alienate people."
Where do you think being transgendered comes from? Mental illness? If so, why not recognize that people don't chose to have mental illnesses? Having gender conflicts is not a choice. Having gender-reassignment surgery, yes, but not the feelings behind the decision.Posted by: Marauder at March 18, 2010 11:33 AM
I think transgendered people's feelings come from sin. just like rapists feelings come from sin and thieves come from sin etc...
The Bible says that the word of God is a sword and pierces to the uttermost parts. The Word of God says people will be offended.
Sorry you think I'm not being compassionate but I stand by my comment. And as I stated, I'm not trying to "sell" anything. The Holy Spirit does the convicting...Posted by: Sydney M. at March 18, 2010 11:54 AM
I didn't say transgendered people are nothing. Reread the sentence.
"The radicals have NOTHINGNESS to offer as a solution. How terribly tragic, but altogether befitting who they are."
The ones being spoken of are the radicals. They can only offer nothingness, consistent with their nihilistic ideology.Posted by: Gerard Nadal at March 18, 2010 11:54 AM
Sydney does not come across as lecturing other Christians when her foundation is so clearly in the Word. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness II Tim 3:16
CC, you said, "I can be a Christian & not shove my belief down someone's throat. When people do that, it turns others off." When anyone's concern is with offending someone, and not his eternal destiny, that person has completely missed the mark of the Great Commission.
For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. -I Cor 1:18
Jesus was called A ROCK OF OFFENSE!
II Peter 2:6-8 (NASB)
For this is contained in Scripture:
"BEHOLD, I LAY IN ZION A CHOICE STONE, A PRECIOUS CORNER stone, AND HE WHO BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED."
7 This precious value, then, is for you who believe; but for those who disbelieve,
"THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED,
THIS BECAME THE VERY CORNER stone,"
8 and, "A STONE OF STUMBLING AND A ROCK OF OFFENSE"; for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed.
Sydney cited Romans 3:23; we ALL (Sydney, me, CC, any transgendered person---all means all!) have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and so ALL are in need of redemption. Romans 6:23 says "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." The Gospel is GOOD NEWS, the best news anyone could ever hear! Everyone's got a paid-in-full debt cancelled complete with innumerable gifts like joy, hope, faith and peace, not to mention the Holy Spirit, just awaiting acceptance.
If Publishers Clearing House is on my doorstep with a jumbo check and balloons, do I tell them they're offending me by implying I'm poor and need their money? Yet this is so much more!
Sydney, thank you for your faithfulness. Preach the word in season and out of season-if the world hates you/is offended by you, it hated Jesus first, so you're in great company.
I've heard other Christians express hope to win people by a quiet example, but faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word. Jesus said, "For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory, and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels." Luke 9:26Posted by: klynn73 at March 18, 2010 12:18 PM
"Well, Bobby, I believe judging others and claiming they may not go to Heaven because of the way they live, the way they pray, worship, etc is a fanatic. Newsflash...there is a God & you ain't Him."
CC, where in any of my posts have I implied that you are going to hell? What in anything I have said makes you think I think I am God?Posted by: Bobby Bambino at March 18, 2010 12:58 PM
I was referring to Sydney & the others as well. We might as well add klymn73 to the list. I don't have a problem with people disagreeing with sex changes, etc, but I get tired of the judgement.
You guys can preach to the mountain top, but I say you turn more people off that way. I am a Catholic & as a youngster, I remember going to my friend's church and being told that Catholics were going to burn in hell. Do you think I wanted to continue attending that church? Nope. Do you think I would ever listen to anyone at that church or my friend? No way! Teaching by example reaches more people.Posted by: CC at March 18, 2010 2:04 PM
Where did I judge anyone, other than quoting the Word saying we all have sinned? It seems, then, your problem is with the Word of God and its author. Please do add me to that list. I'll stand on that Rock; when the waters rise I know my sure foundation is the Word and not mere feelings or emotions. I think the worst thing anyone could ever hear from Jesus is, "Depart from me, I never knew you." May God bless you.Posted by: klynn73 at March 18, 2010 2:25 PM
I too am Catholic, and I can assure you that nowhere in Catholic dogma does it ever say that we are to judge another person's soul. No one can ever say that anyone else is going to hell. Judging souls is God's business, not ours.
That being said, we must point our sin and those actions which, objectively speaking, can result in someone's going to hell. But again, we can not say what a person's level of culpability is or anything else like that. We can not look into their souls and say where they are heading.
So I do agree with you that it is wrong for anyone to tell anyone else that they are going to hell because only God knows this. But that should not exclude pointing out sin when we see it in others lives. God love you.Posted by: Bobby Bambino at March 18, 2010 3:12 PM
Well, I appreciate your honesty, Bobby. You seem like a rational & kind person. God love you as well.
Klynn, I don't have a problem with the Bible nor the author. I do have a problem with folks twisting it to suit their beliefs or prejudices i.e. Fred Phelps. It amazes me that one Christian group has this interpretation, another church has a different one, so on & so on. People fight over this issue. If we could all take one thing from the Bible, I wish it would be love. God Bless you.Posted by: CC at March 18, 2010 3:58 PM
Gerard: Oops, you're right. Sorry about that.
Sydney: What about people who have had these feelings from very early childhood? Did they commit some greivous sin in preschool?
"You guys can preach to the mountain top, but I say you turn more people off that way. I am a Catholic & as a youngster, I remember going to my friend's church and being told that Catholics were going to burn in hell. Do you think I wanted to continue attending that church? Nope. Do you think I would ever listen to anyone at that church or my friend? No way! Teaching by example reaches more people."
Exactly.Posted by: Marauder at March 18, 2010 4:38 PM
Marauder...I just had this very discussion with my mother-in-law. Children are born with a sin nature. Thats also in the Bible. We are born slaves to sin and only the blood of Christ can free us.Posted by: Sydney M. at March 18, 2010 6:09 PM
Meaning...I didn't have to teach my son to sin. He naturally knew how to throw a temper tantrum, be mean to other children when he didn't get his way, lie, disobey. Are they "grievous sins"? Isn't every sin grievous in that every sin nailed Christ to the cross? Some sins have more consequences than others. A three year old having a temper tantrum will have less of a consequence than a grown man shooting another man in the head. But they are both sins. The both separate the sinner from God.
No, I sure didn't have to teach my son to give into his flesh. Thats natural. We are born that way...selfish, sinful. He grasped the concept of sin and right and wrong very early. In January he asked Jesus to forgive his sins and take him to heaven someday. Its really very easy to understand. Don't make excuses for others sin. Or for your own.Posted by: Sydney M. at March 18, 2010 6:14 PM
First off, I do not think this site is the best place for this article--I do not see how this pertains to the cause of protecting life, and if Jill thinks it does, she should have drawn that connection clearly.
There are definitely persons who do not fit traditional gender roles for various reasons. For instance, some people are born with both male and female characteristics, presumably due to genetic differences resulting from the fall. I am not one of those people, so I can't tell you what such a person would feel, so if they felt female, or male, or neither, or both, I would tend to believe their wisdom above my own in this matter. Consider, for example, the athlete who was recently the center of a controversy due to her possession of male as well as female characteristics. If in a similar situation, when testing revealed that the person in question was more male, and that person was relieved because he had always felt and thought like a man, and wanted to have his genitalia fixed so that he looked more male and could function as a male, I could not condemn that person.
I have also heard reports of male/female chimeras--when male/female twins are present in the womb, they might combine at a very early stage, and different parts of the resulting single body may have different genetic makeup. So it would be theoretically possible for such an individual to have a female brain in a male body or vice versa. You may have heard of a woman who discovered through genetic testing that her child was not hers because her ovaries belonged to an "absorbed twin"--she would be an example of a chimera.
In these cases, it seems wrong to judge harshly or assume we know what is best for individuals. They are not unnatural and they are created by God, and God knew them from the beginning of time. There is no reason such an individual could not be a Christian.
I don't know whether people who felt that they were both genders or neither would necessarily be called to chastity. Certainly any future spouse ought to know pertinent details before it became an issue, and of course they could only marry one gender of person at a time (unless they married another person who had characteristics of both sexes).
In addition, we don't know that environmental causes (say, all the female hormones in drinking water due to the pill) can't be the cause of the confusion of some individuals who are born male but "feel" female. It also seems possible that hormonal problems in an individual's biochemistry could lead to confusion for them. In these cases, it would seem that the correct course of action would be hormone therapy to correct the issue, if possible. At any rate, the person's feelings would be a medical issue, not a sin issue, so long as they were fighting to take every thought captive. They would be no more sinful in their confusion than a person suffering from depression due to hormone imbalance who had to sometimes fight thoughts of self-harm.
And I agree with the previous poster that if some sort of mental illness is a factor, then the individual is not at fault--but I don't think everyone else was saying that they were--many have said that the correct approach would be to treat the mental illness, not change the body to match the mind. I would agree with that. If a person were convinced that his left arm wasn't his, but belonged to someone else (I have heard of cases like this), his or her doctors would do that person a disservice by removing the arm, even if the patient requested it.
If none of these factors were present (we don't know from this article), then yes, it could be that sin was part of the equation. News articles don't always show the full story, so May-Welby's decision that she/he was not happy as a woman may not be as flippant as it sounded. Certainly as pro-lifers we can understand that sometimes a reporter's bias can affect how the article portrays an issue. Bodily mutilation does not exclude the ability to accept Christ; one of the earliest Gentile converts was a eunuch. Even in the church people sometimes have elective surgery to cut the vas deferens, to block their fallopian tubes. At one point it was common to preemptively remove the appendix, and sometimes tonsils are preemptively removed. Not all of these are equal, but they are all mutilation of the body.
I definitely do not think it is appropriate to refer to an individual--even if the only problem is sin and in sin that individual has manipulated their body--as anything other than a person created in the image of God. I would avoid the term "it" due to implications of not being human (just as I would for an unborn person of unknown gender). Yes, it's awkward, but respecting a person's dignity is more important.
For myself, I don't think I have enough facts to make a judgment on this particular story. May-Welby is clearly a human being who, like all of us, is in need of God's mercy and forgiveness. What May-Welby's sins are is not for me to speculate, but clearly May-Welby has faced many difficulties and much unhappiness.Posted by: ycw at March 19, 2010 5:09 AM
That was a beautiful and thoughtful post, ycw. I agree with everything you said. Thank you for taking the time to think the issue through and for sharing your thoughts.Posted by: len at March 19, 2010 10:07 AM
Vannah, I agree with you. Transgendered people often go through hell. They are very often harrassed, beaten, and even killed.
We may not agree with each other, but I think we should be tolerant of one another.Posted by: Phillymiss at March 19, 2010 5:25 PM
Um, am I mistaken or wasn't there a sexually ambiguous character on SNL named 'Pat'?
Actually, I kinda feel sorry for the guy. 'Other' isn't a legitimate option and he's just ensured that he'll never completely fit in anywhere.
There are some things that are so gender specific that neither gender will truly accept the other completely entering into (no, guys, you can't come to the bathroom with us anymore than we get to go into the locker room with you. Guys will never make great shopping partners and girls don't make good sport bar buddies - and no, exceptions do not invalidate that).
Neither coffee clatch nor bowling league - not even a sub-culture - nothing to belong to with others like yourself. Strikes me as incredibly sad.Posted by: Phylis at March 20, 2010 7:22 PM