According to Google, Transgender means “denoting or relating to a person whose self-identity does not conform unambiguously to conventional notions of male or female gender.” Nothing like a web based dictionary to clear things up, eh?
I would like to reject this definition out of hand based on the fact that I don’t care for ANY professional sports, and I greatly enjoy musical theatre, which means, on this definition, since I don’t conform unambiguously to conventions of male, I am Transgender. I choose not to self-identify as Transgender, whatever the internet might say.
In short, I think we all get that a Transgender person is a man who self identifies as a woman, or a woman who self-identifies as a man. Now, the social justice warriors demand that we take a person’s self-identity as legitimate and treat them how they self-identify, and not how we might see them based on biology. Their justification for this demand is that, according to their worldview, gender is something you choose not something we are born with.
On one level this sounds all open minded and giving a care (or something like that), but it seems to me that the whole concept gives away the game almost immediately as soon as you give it any thought. Seriously- just forget all of the social media bumper stickers and consider what is meant by Transgender. Just consider what is meant by it.
Imagine a woman who dresses like a woman and who thinks of herself as a woman. Is she Transgender? No, of course not. No one would say she is.
Now, consider a man who dresses like a man and who thinks of himself as a man. Is he transgender? No, of course not. Unless he is me, apparently. Stupid internet dictionary. Grumble grumble…
Now, consider a man who dresses like a woman because he feels that, whatever his biology, he is, inside, a woman. Is this person Transgender? Yes. But, WHY is this person Transgender when the other two were not?
BECAUSE HE IS A MAN.
A woman dressed as a woman is not Transgender. Why not? BECAUSE SHE IS A WOMAN. Do you see what the word Transgender gives away? It implies in its very USE the fact that MEN are NOT WOMEN. Inherent in the use of the word is the belief that men and women are DIFFERENT GENDERS. The ONLY reason you identify someone as Transgender is because they are acting/dressing/self-identifying as one gender, but you KNOW THEY ARE THE OPPOSITE GENDER.
If someone thought that gender really WAS something we choose and not something REAL, then we would just call that guy a woman. The word “Transgender” would not have been invented, and it would not be used.
Think about baseball. The team you root for is fairly arbitrary. There may be some connection to your family, or where you grew up, or where you live now, but the fact is, you are fan of whatever team you decide you are a fan. Even if you live on the North side of Chicago, if you root for the White Sox, no one says of you that you REALLY are a Cubs fan, but you self-identify as a Sox fan. There is no TransFanism. If you choose to be a White Sox fan, it doesn’t matter if you live on the moon. You get to choose what team you root for, because there is nothing in Nature which decides that for you.
But when you are born, you are born with some chromosomes and anatomical parts which are themselves very unambiguous. It’s a binary system- either tab A or slot B, but not neither, and not both, and there is nothing in the middle. It’s in your DNA before it’s expressed in anatomy or behaviors or feelings. Your DNA is male or female before you even HAVE anatomy or behaviors or feelings.
The very fact that we identify these people as “Transgender” shows that, whatever we profess, we all KNOW that gender is a real thing determined before we are born, and these people are the gender they were born. In calling them Transgender, we are acknowledging this to be a fact. Their gender is not their choice, it is decided by the DNA had from the moment they were first conceived. My love for musical theatre? That could be nature, nurture, or some combination. I’ll admit that I’m a little ambiguous about that. It may not be in my DNA, but it is in my soul.