Men, I’ll be honest. Winning isn’t everything …. Men, it’s the only thing!” (UCLA Bruins football coach Henry Russell ‘Red’ Sanders) That quote seems to summarize much of our culture’s ethos and worldview. How we play “the game” means little. What matters – above all else – is winning.
Those are the thoughts that bounced through my brain as I contemplated some new “findings” related to transgenderism. Headlines about these “studies” claim: “Scientists uncover 20 genes linked to being transgender – supporting claims the condition has a physical basis.”
Most people who see such headlines are too busy with the basics of everyday life to even read the accompanying articles, much less to analyze them. They likely will forget they even saw the headlines – until the topic arises, perhaps in a conversation with a friend.
Here’s a likely scenario:
Jill: “I saw Caitlyn Jenner on TV yesterday. Oh my gosh, Stephanie, I know I need to be more modern, more understanding, but watching the interview just creeped me out.”
Stephanie: “I understand, girlfriend, it does seem pretty weird. But we have to face facts. People can’t help how they were born.”
Jill: “What do you mean?”
Stephanie: “Well, just a couple days ago I saw an article that said some people are born that way; they can’t help it.”
Jill: “So I guess I really do need to be more understanding.”
Stephanie: “That’s right; we have to accept the truth.”
But are Jill and Stephanie accepting the truth? What is truth? Dictionary.com defines truth as “conformity with fact or reality; verity.” Webster’s defines it this way: “the body of real things, events, and facts.”
Now here’s what the Daily Mail article about the study said: “Critics of transgender identity say the condition is ‘all in the mind’, and transgender people have a psychological problem rather than a medical one. But by highlighting genetic mutations that affect brain development, the latest findings point towards transgender identity having a physical basis.” (Emphasis mine)
What do we call the words “point towards”? We call them equivocal. That means they are vague, ambiguous. Truth is not equivocal. Now that doesn’t mean that the study’s findings are false. No – what it means is that the findings cannot yet be declared to be unequivocally true. The words point towards mean might, not are.
But because Jill saw that article headline – and didn’t have or take the time to read and analyze the article – now both she and Stephanie have a slightly altered worldview. They now believe that transgenders have no choice; that they are being true to their genetic makeup.
Score one for the radical change agents. They won – not with truth, but through an implication. It appears that transgenders are genetically predisposed to their desires. Don’t bother to wait to see if the study is confirmed to be true, just print that headline and let busy people draw their conclusions from it.
The Daily Mail article continued: “Presenting their research at the Society for Reproductive Investigation conference, the researchers said: ‘We identified genetic variants in 20 genes that may play a role in transgender identity.'” If the sentence omitted the word may, this would be huge news. But that little word is, again, equivocal.
Just below that, the article quotes a geneticist, who said, “It lends legitimacy, if that needs to be added, that transgender is not a choice but a way of being.” Please read that again: “It lends legitimacy.” More equivocation. The geneticist didn’t say, “This is an established fact.” Lending legitimacy means it could be true, not that it is true. It could be true that we are being visited by beings from other planets. Some recent videos lend some legitimacy to that idea. But there’s a huge chasm between saying space aliens may be visiting our planet and space aliens are here.
We need to be discerning media consumers. Not every headline provides us accurate news – even if the headline refers to scientists. My plea to my readers is that we build our worldview on facts that we can confirm. And here’s a first step: If you read a headline and don’t have or take the time to read and analyze the accompanying article, then please dismiss that headline; behave as if you never saw it.
We win when we honor the truth. Anything less is a loss – personally and for our society.
- From Denise Shick. Shick is the founder and executive director of Help 4 Families, a Christian ministry that reaches out to family members and brings understanding of the emotional and spiritual issues that families face when a loved one is gender-confused.