Some Suggestions for The Washington Post
...that won't pass the Style Guide
A friend who is familiar with our daughter’s struggle with gender dysphoria, her trans-identification and the resulting adverse medical and psychological consequences, recently texted me with the good news—The Washington Post had just published an interview with a detransistioner that was favorable to the cause. The “cause” being to move away from the gender affirmation model and the quasi-religious belief that people can be born in the wrong body and be “cured” with drugs and surgery. This insane ideology that has produced a medical scandal.
I excitedly opened up the WaPo app to read the article, “Detransitioners’ wield influence in shaping conservative transgender laws”. Sorry friend, I am not impressed. I’m familiar with Prisha Mosley. I follow her on Twitter (X) and appreciate her bravery in speaking out. I applaud WaPo for covering her. But, upon reading the article, I wasn’t as enthusiastic as my friend. Of course, she’s not in this mess as closely as I and other parents of gender confused kids are. So, she wouldn’t pick up the nonsense bits. As a public service, I’ve called them out here. Washington Post quotes are in bold and italics. My thoughts follow each.
Disagree? Let PITT know. But use facts, not feelings.
“…conservative activists fighting to ban the gender-affirming care” – this is not a “conservative” cause. Nor should it be a “progressive” cause. This should be non-ideological issue where medical and psychological treatment decisions are governed by evidence-based research (like most other medical and/or psychological conditions). You don’t become a “conservative” if you don’t support “gender affirming care. You are following the science. WaPo is a fan of that when it comes to climate change.
“the detransitioners have offered themselves up as evidence of what they say are the risks and consequences of gender-affirming care, even though it has been endorsed by the nation’s largest medical groups, including the American Medical Association” – Why cite only the endorsement of the AMA? Why not include the opinion of medical experts on “gender affirming care” in other countries such as England, France, Norway and Sweden? Curious readers may be interested in the conclusions medical experts in other countries have drawn, using the same data. Spoiler alert: they do not endorse.
“But as conservatives have mounted a concerted effort to limit trans and gay rights” - Why are gay rights relevant to this conversation? What rights do gay and/or trans people not have? What are conservatives attempting to limit? And please don’t cite access to sports. No one is advocating for transgender athletes to be banned from sports. Women’s rights advocates are fighting for men, even those who have taken drugs to look more feminine, to be prohibited from playing women’s sports, so that there will still be a meaningful thing called “women’s sports”. Men who are trans-identified can play on co-ed or men’s teams.
“Mosley had traveled from her home in Michigan to Texas to join female activists planning a protest at the state Capitol during Austin’s annual Pride celebration. The activists were there to prevent expansion of transgender rights and support a proposed state law that would define and limit a person’s gender in vital documents to what it was at birth, male or female”. – What are the female activists protesting? WaPo aligned Mosley with conservative activities above. Are these female activists conservatives or is there a particular concern for women when men can change sex on legal documents? In fact, these activists are fighting for the rights of women to be a separate class, to refer to themselves as women. This used to be a progressive cause. You wouldn’t know it from this coverage.
“Most Americans oppose medication and hormone treatments for minors and say gender is determined at birth, a Washington Post poll conducted a year ago found”. – Are most Americans transphobic bigots? Any follow up on why they have these concerns?
Their political affiliations were all over the map, but what united them, they said, was the fear that the movement for transgender rights was threatening to erase not just the term “women,” but also women’s rights and spaces. – Gotta give credit where credit is due. WaPo got this part right.
At 16, doctors prescribed Mosley injections to stop her from menstruating. At 17, they prescribed testosterone that led her to grow body and facial hair. At 18, at her request, surgeons removed her breasts. Mosley began to identify publicly as Charlie, changing her driver’s license and other official identification. – But proponents of gender affirming care for minors assert that this kind of thing doesn’t happen. That alone is newsworthy.
In July, she sued the North Carolina doctors, therapists and clinics who provided her with surgery, hormones and other gender-affirming care, alleging fraud and malpractice. The Dallas-based law firm representing her has filed three other lawsuits in the past year on behalf of detransitioners it calls “individuals who were misled and abused — many as children.” – How many lawsuits are there on this issue? What about the Tavistock Clinic scandal?
She shared similar details with lawmakers in Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Tennessee, Texas, North Carolina and South Carolina. All except Maine and South Carolina approved the laws she supported banning gender-affirming care for minors. Perhaps it’s time to drop the euphemisms and move from “banning gender-affirming care for minors” to “criminalizing the sterilization and genital mutilation of minors and young adults”?
“I don’t think the community is against detransitioners as a whole,” Hill said, just those “who are advocating for their care to be taken away. Folks do get very emotional about it.” A contrast of how transistioners are treated (celebrations, kudos for bravery and embracing their true selves) to how detransistioners are treated (dismissed, ridiculed) might be appropriate there.
“Those Mosley is lobbying against include Sofia Sepulveda, who said calling transgender people mentally ill and likening gender-affirming care to lobotomies was “hateful rhetoric.” It literally takes me back to when I was little and I lived in a family that wasn’t affirming, who every time I tried to express myself they would hit me and punish me,” said Sepulveda, 47, of San Antonio, who started taking hormones at 21 and had transition surgery two years ago.” So nice to see the viewpoint of a satisfied transistioner included here. Can we assume WaPo will include the view of at least one detransisitioner in all future reporting on trans issues?