By Scott Fowler
Thanks for the response. I agree wholeheartedly that one should put out the fire, fix the safety regulations, and deal with the burn victims. My desire to know “why?” does not stem from a “dispassionate” need to simply get the facts but not care about the solution. My passion is being shown by entering into an honest dialogue with you, (which I genuinely appreciate, by the way). And I think I expressed the sentiment you are looking for in one of the last paragraphs of my response article when I wrote,
I respect Chris’s strong assertion that gender is not a choice; that trying to change one’s “crippling sex-gender incongruence” does not work. I care about the word crippling. And in spite of those evangelical Christians who seem to preach about hell like they want you to go there (we all know the type), I think we all are concerned about the word crippling.But our approach is to ask “What can we do to change the situation?” rather than to simply try and make the world more accepting. It’s like the difference between radical surgery and hospice. One you do because you want to fix it. The other you do because nothing else worked and you resign yourself to what doctors say is inevitable. Genuine, Bible-believing Christians want to fix it. I understand that we have not expressed that in love, and I understand that even when we do, those words may still be heard as offensive to the segment of society who is experiencing life as a gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender person. But we want to fix it.
But if I did not go far enough, I will now: Of course I would like to understand the transgender person has arrived at his or her status (not presuming that every story is the same). But, I am moved more by the difficulty they are walking through with their families, their daily lives, their understanding of who they are before God; difficulty that I am only just now beginning to understand at an admittedly naive level.
As far as my “quibbling” over semantic differences, sometimes quibbling brings about needed investigation. I would think that if a genuine effort is to be made at helping people understand transgenderism (still not sure of that word), then some understanding that a concept with its requisite terminology (namely that gender and sex are two different things), which only began to be clearly enunciated among professionals and scholars officially since 2001, and postulated as late as 1978 may not have had time to make it into Popular Mechanics or Good Housekeeping. Nevertheless, your answer to my quibbling validated my concern, that being that something so counterintuitive to the average person should be declared with such authority based on a fairly recent body of knowledge at least deserves a little patience while people catch up. I am convinced that, at least among Evangelicals (and we have to work on your very wide definition of Evangelicals), that people are frequently found to be twenty to forty years behind the times. Some Christians are just now figuring out that Christendom is dead you know?!