You may have heard about the recent NPR broadcast about the little boy who wants to play with dolls and wear pink, whose parents, on the advice of his psychiatrist, have taken a harsh approach to making him behave like a proper little boy and stop with this horrible fag nonsense. It's a heartbreaking story. Dan Savage Slogged it, and as usual I had to comment. My comment was adjudged to be good enough to get another Slog front page. Of course, I'm chuffed, but I also think it bears repeating. I'm proud of what I wrote:
Look, people. The boy isn’t asking to go in and have his willie chopped off. He wants to play with dolls. He wants to identify as a girl for a while. That doesn’t mean that he going to be transgendered when he grows up. Maybe he will, maybe he won’t. Why don’t you deal with that when it comes up—or maybe let HIM deal with it? Then?
Nobody has to make a final, permanent, irrevocable decision when they’re six.
In the meantime, though, torturing him by taking away his toys and, most importantly, implanting in his mind the idea that WHO HE IS IS WRONG, is a really, really bad idea.
Nobody cares if you’re squicked out by gender reassignment surgery. Nobody cares. This isn’t ABOUT gender reassignment surgery. It’s about a little boy who is being turned against himself.
And, really, even if you think the surgery is “as bad as plastic surgery”, the correct response is—as always—”then don’t have it.” Adults who think it’s right for them have the right to have it EVEN IF THEY’RE WRONG. Even if they’re “making a terrible mistake.” It’s none of your damn business. And, you know, there is a large number of people for whom it absolutely WAS the right decision, and if they squick you out, it’s your damn loss, not theirs. I don’t have a problem with it, and I embrace my transgendered friends every bit as much as my gay and straight ones.
But that’s nothing to do with this tragic little boy. Maybe it will be someday. You don’t know, I don’t know, Dr. Mengele there doesn’t know, HE doesn’t know. He’s a little kid. Let him play with his toys.
I didn't say it there, but I'll say it here: if bullies beat up your kid, and you side with the bullies, I don't understand you at all.
Photo of pink child's coffins (by Maurycy Gomulicki) swiped from Pingmag.