A BBC documentary has highlighted the dangers of endorsing the view that people can be ‘trapped in the wrong body’.
‘Transgender Kids: Who Knows Best?’ uncovered how trans activists in Canada have sought to enforce their radical agenda through accusations of ‘transphobia’ towards opponents.
Activists, critical of the concerns raised by the programme, even lobbied the BBC to pull it before it aired on BBC2 last Thursday.
The documentary focused on the work and research of Dr Kenneth Zucker, a recognised authority on childhood gender dysphoria, who ran Canada’s largest child gender clinic for 30 years.
Dr Zucker was fired for challenging the idea that children who believe they are ‘trapped in the wrong body’ should always be affirmed in that belief.
Former colleague Dr Ray Blanchard said: “People are now probably fairly terrified of taking any stance that is out of step with what trans activists are demanding.
“They will certainly look and say, ‘If someone as prominent as Ken Zucker could lose his job for being reluctant to join the trans bandwagon, what could happen to me if I expressed any reservations?’”
According to Dr Zucker, children with gender dysphoria often have other mental health problems – a significant factor in the tragically high rate of suicidal thoughts among transsexuals.
People are now probably fairly terrified of taking any stance that is out of step with what trans activists are demanding.
His research indicates that the incidence of suicidal tendencies among gender dysphoric children is consistent with those suffering from depression, anxiety, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Programme makers interviewed a mother named Dalia who explained that her son Kareem’s issues were linked to separation anxiety from a traumatic upbringing.
She said: “I don’t think that it would be responsible to just run with it if he said ‘I want to be a girl’”.
Dad Chris shared how he had refused to give in to his daughter Alex’s demands to be treated as if she was male. She responded by punching herself in the genitals and screaming, “I’m a boy!”
Aged 12, however, she realised that she was a girl and had been misled by gender stereotyping. Once she discovered other girls who shared her interests, particularly in sport, she began to accept that she was “a girl who also had boy interests”.
Gina Rippon, Professor of Cognitive Neuroimaging at Aston University, accused the transsexual movement of “reinforcing gender stereotypes”.
She called it an “18th-century conclusion” to regard behaviour or preferences as an indication that someone has been “born in the wrong box and therefore they need to change from one to the other”.
‘Transition or die’
A woman known as ‘Lou’ told the harrowing story of how she had been pressured into taking puberty blockers, then sex change hormones, and finally having major surgery aged 20.
“I was very much told by the community that if you don’t transition, you will self-harm and you will kill yourself. I became convinced that my options were transition or die”, she said.
She deeply regrets her double mastectomy: “The darkest moment was when I realised that I had actually looked normal for a girl, that I had actually been slim and pretty, that my body hadn’t been grotesque the way I thought it was.”
I became convinced that my options were transition or die.
Lou received death threats after sharing her story online and is now deemed ‘transphobic’.
Transgender activist Hershell Russell acknowledged that some regret having sex change surgery but claimed there are “not very many of them” and complained that “somehow this group of people are being given a huge amount of attention”.
A petition to remove the programme because of its perceived bias against transsexuals received over 11,000 signatures.
The broadcaster has faced significant criticism in recent months for a series of programmes promoting transsexualism – including to children as young as six.