The Catholic Thing
A Look at the T in LGBT Print E-mail
By Austin Ruse   
Friday, 20 May 2011

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How is it that the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgendered (LGBT) agenda seems to have taken hold among many in the United States without anyone taking a close look at that T? I suspect that most Americans have not given much thought to the Ts. But they should.

Alongside LGBs, we are repeatedly being asked to accept the transgendered in law and policy. Just last week the Connecticut legislature considered something opponents have dubbed the “bathroom bill,” which would allow the “transgendered” into any bathroom they choose. U.N. human-rights personnel have already decided that international law requires that “sexual identity,” which is the cornerstone of transgenderism, be enforced as a new category of non-discrimination in international human rights law.

We are not talking here about the microscopic number of unfortunate babies born with confused chromosomes and both sets of reproductive organs. Rather, we are talking about those whose bodily confusion and even hatred is so intense they are convinced they have been born into the wrong body, a confusion that often leads to bodily mutilation of completely healthy sex organs done under the knife of accredited medical doctors.

One of the things we have lost in the national debate over homosexuality is the Yuck Factor. The thought of men kissing and more was once enough to send shudders through most Americans. Perhaps it still is, but we are being socially engineered no longer to express it. Certainly this cannot be the case with the transgendered.

The Yuck Factor must still have the power to repulse, particularly when one looks behind the transgender curtain.

John Colapinto wrote a powerful book ten years ago about the case of John/Joan, an infant boy whose penis was burned off in circumcision and who was placed under the sadistic care of Dr. John Money of Johns Hopkins University, who butchered the boy, shot him full of hormones against his will, and forced him to wear dresses. For years, Money falsely reported that John/Joan had fully adapted to his new gender. John/Joan later committed suicide. It was the work of John Money on John/Joan that formed the basis for much of the sex reassignments that followed.


Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons, along with Phillip Dutton and Dale O’Leary, has published a paper in the National Bioethics Quarterly on the psychology of “sex reassignment surgery” that should give anyone pause.

The authors say the belief one is “trapped in the body of the wrong sex” is “generated by a disordered perception of self. . . .such a fixed, irrational belief is appropriately described as a delusion.” They call sex reassignment surgery “a category mistake” that offers “a surgical solution for psychological problems.” And it is related to “addiction to masturbation and fantasy, poor body image, excessive anger, and severe psychopathology in a parent.”

According to the literature there are two types who seek sex reassignment surgery: homosexual transsexuals and autogynephilic transsexuals. Autogynephilic transsexuals “are men in love with the image of themselves as women.” They find sexual excitement in dressing up as women and often have fantasies of being penetrated. If they have partners, the partners are mostly props in the fantasy. The paper says most AT males consider themselves to be heterosexual. Many marry and have children and some eventually decide they want to live full time as women and then seek sex reassignment surgery.

Homosexual transsexuals are “men whose appearance, gestures, and speech are perceived as feminine.” They believe they can pass for women and attract masculine heterosexual men. Dr. Paul McHugh, who closed the sex reassignment program at Johns Hopkins – often to the relief of surgeons called upon to do what they regarded as genital mutilation – says these men are “conflicted and guilt-ridden homosexuals who see a sex-change as a way to resolve their conflicts over homosexuality by allowing them to behave sexually as females with men.”

Much of this can be traced to “gender identity disorder,” where young boys do not bond with their fathers or their male playgroup. They may have effeminate characteristics or simply an inability to catch a ball. Their mothers may dress them up as girls. Additionally, their mothers may be depressed. The boy may adapt himself by acting like a girl, which causes further alienation from other boys.  From this can grow the feeling the boy was born in the wrong body. Psychologically this can lead to a hatred of the body, particularly the sex organs.

It is apparent that almost all of this is based in early childhood psychological problems that have gone untreated. The authors tell the story of a thirteen-year-old boy seeking sex reassignment surgery who described in great detail sexual experiences including anal sex that he had with older boys and men. He did not feel like a boy. He felt like a girl and wanted physically to be one. The authors said it was clear what the boy was describing was the result of long-term sexual abuse. Yet the psychological establishment refuses even to entertain such ideas.

The authors hold it is nothing short of unethical for medical doctors to butcher otherwise healthy sex organs in order to “treat” underlying psychological problems. The authors show that long after the penis is removed, long after a rudimentary vagina is formed, and long after the daily estrogen shots used to grow breasts, such underlying psychological problems remain.

What’s next on this far frontier of sexual yuckiness? Some say pre-pubescent children should be given hormone treatments to put off puberty so that they can have more time to figure out their “gender identity”. There are even new letters being proposed for the acronym. Alongside LGBT you will soon see “I” and “Q.” Don’t ask.



Austin Ruse
is the President of the New York and Washinton, D.C.-based Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), a research institute that focuses exclusively on international social policy. The opinions expressed here are Mr. Ruse’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of C-FAM.

The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own. 

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Comments (10)Add Comment
written by Father Benedict, May 20, 2011
The University of Vermont now recognizes seven "gender categories" - don't ask!
written by EssemSF, May 20, 2011
Perhaps an unusual viewpoint for TCT: I'm a "gay" man who parted ways with the Church over the issue of homosexuality, but who understands the Catholic position on it as a probably unavoidable outcome of its deeper commitment to the sacrament of marriage. I don't practice the faith but I am not mad at it.

I also have found myself increasingly distanced from the "LGBT" construct which is now considered to be canonical for folks like me. It is a sexual version of Yugoslavia, concocted from the toxic assumptions of leftist and victimist identity politics, plus male-hating feminism. Insofar as my erotic life creates a "community", it might be with folks who share the issue of erotic object: attraction to one's own sex.

What the addition of the T does is to skew the issue into one of gender deviance, basing the whole LBGT identity not on a shared set of desires but on opposition to traditional notions of gender. On those grounds, there is no reason to reject male cross-dressers (who are overwhelmingly straight) into the "community."

Count me out.

I am a man who loves other men. I am not a female soul trapped in a male body. I am a male soul quite happily at home in his male body. What do I have in common with a male who hates his body, wants to have his privates cut off and be a female? And then, as a heterosexual, connect with men?

Unfortunately, adding the T only serves to reinforce among many --not all-- gay men the lamentable phenomenon of the unintegrated feminine and the fetishized masculine.
written by Achilles, May 20, 2011
This lgbtqi is one of the most interesting moral (immoral) developments in the history of human kind. This is just fruit of the tree of ignorance we have been feeding off of since the enlightenment. We have surely lost sight of what it means to be human when we mistake obvious psychological problems for natural mistakes and use technological solutions to solve soul problems. There will be plenty more where this came from. Confucius said “emotions are like fire and water, they make great servants but terrible masters.” Our confused emotions have started a wild fire in our imaginations and I think the sky is the limit on these gender classifications if we don’t put this fire out with some Holy Water.
written by enness, May 20, 2011
I have heard enough plausible evidence to be convinced that some cases have a physiological origin. The problem is, my instinct tells me that these are probably a lot fewer than there are people claiming, and society has little interest in really sorting out which is which; people simply take their word for it and then callously decide it's not their problem or they have no right to tell them they need to seek help. If I even suggest that some of them might be mentally ill, it's dismissed out of hand. Not like it wouldn't fit in with many other strange disorders that afflict people, such as body integrity disorder (cutting off healthy limbs out of the belief that one will be happier as an amputee) or Munchausen syndrome (need to be seen as ill or injured, sometimes to the point of causing one's own symptoms).

The bottom line has to be compassion...
written by jgbeam, May 20, 2011
The bathroom bill passed the CT House yesterday. No surprise in the state where gay legislators have tried to force lay boards to rule the Bishops.
written by Achilles, May 20, 2011
Enness, I appreciate your comments, they are sincere and intelligent, but intelligence founded on error is only greater error. The bottom line is not compassion, it is Truth, and only compassion that comes out of Truth is properly ordered to our truest purpose, that is salvation. To choose oneself over Truth for comfort in this life falls within our free will, but we must not call things what we call them with the foundational idea that compassion is the bottom line, we must call things what they are in Truth. I am pleased to see that you understand the perversion and corrupted ideology behind the lgbtqulmnop agenda, that is a good beginning. Please pray for me, Achilles.
written by Louise, May 20, 2011
I remember those great words spoken by Katherine Hepburn in "The African Queen". I may not have Humphrey Bogart's character's name correct but the quotation goes something like this:

"Human nature, Mr. Alnaught, is what we are put on earth to overcome."
written by Jack, May 20, 2011
Mr. Ruse: I want to make sure I am understanding you correctly - you believe that a 13 year-old boy wants to undergo a sex change because he has been sexually abused and is probably ostracized by his same-sex peers. And your response to this be repulsed by him? To employ the "yuck factor"? Do you think this is the Catholic position or are you claiming this as your own?
written by Grump, May 21, 2011
New poll out 55% now believe gay marriage acceptable, up from 44% previously. So, the "anything goes" crowd is now fully in command.

Another reason why I'm a non-believer. Because if people are "born this way," then Who is to blame? The Creator or the created? As for the yuck factor, it's always been there for me and most others. But now, as the mainstream, leftist media continue to push LGBT agenda and as Americans become more "tolerant" about "alternative lifestyles," I react with only one thought. If there is a God, let Him put an end to all imperfection and begin anew. Depravity is now the new norm.

As Jane Eyre ends, "Come Lord Jesus."
written by Austin Ruse, May 21, 2011

I applaud your honest reading of my piece! Actually, I plainly say the young man needs psychiatric help and not someone lopping off his privates. Getting real help is not yucky.

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