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David Archuleta's new single about he and (some in?) his family leaving the Faith


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1 hour ago, manol said:

"Biological gender" is synonymous with "biological sex" in my view.   But I'm not about to debate semantics with a lawyer. 

I'm okay with that.

I think much discussion and understanding regarding these topics are mired by disrupted semantics, equivocation, and so on.  Whether "sex" and "gender" are discrete categories, or overlapping, or synonymous, matters.  Whether "gender identity" and "biological sex" are discrete categories, or overlapping, or synonymous, matters.  Even fundamental concepts like "man/male" and "woman/female" are being disrupted at the definitional level.

1 hour ago, manol said:

Of course I understand the difference between biological gender/biological sex/intersex and gender identity. 

Okay.  I apologize if I gave offense.

1 hour ago, manol said:

Then which binary biological sex are each of the following individuals:  Physiology male, endocrine system female; Physiology female, endocrine system male; Both, and Neither?

One or the other, depending on the type of DSD in view and the individual in question.  For example, what you are describing may be Androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS), which is "when a person who is genetically male (who has one X and one Y chromosome) is resistant to hormones that produce a male appearance (called androgens)."

1 hour ago, manol said:
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For my fellow straight adult males, including @smac97:  Among us there is a spectrum we have all encountered:  The macho spectrum.  While it is easier to express as more macho if you are physically powerful, it's certainly not a requirement.  And we all know many boys and men who are physically powerful yet not inclined to express as particularly macho.  So it's a spectrum that is not dictated by the physical; it's not binary; it's not just "macho dudes" and "wimps".   I would guess that most of us are probably somewhere towards the middle of the macho spectrum, sort of like a bell curve, and most of us have a circle of inclusion that extends to either side of where we are on this spectrum.  Our lived experience having been that innate machismo is non-binary, and our lived experience on the macho spectrum being at least somewhat inclusive, maybe this precedent can make it easier for us to expand our circle of inclusion to those whose gender identity falls in a different place on the spectrum than our own. 

I think we still need to recognize the reality of the sexual binary.  And not conflate it with "gender dysphoria," "gender identity," DSD, etc.

How do you feel about my invitation to expand your circle of inclusion?

I don't know what you mean by "expand our circle of inclusion."  Could you clarify what you have in mind?  What is it that you want people to do to expand this circle?

I am, in the main, indifferent to how other people choose to lead their lives.  I want us to be happy, so I hope each of us makes healthy and smart choices and behaviors.  And, of course, the good ol' "Your rights end where mine begin" aphorism merits some attention.

I think each of us is a son or daughter of God, and should be presumptively treated with respect and civility.  

I become concerned when elements of society, under the auspices of "empathy" or "compassion" or "love" or "acceptance," etc., start attempting to control the speech of others, to silence and/or punish speech by weaponizing the power of the State (go, JK Rowling!) and by other means, to rationalize radical and irreversible and damaging (sterilizing) and largely untested medical procedures (on minors, at least), to erase legitimate and important distinctions between men and women and male and female spaces (sports, bathrooms, prisons, etc.), and so on.

Again, I don't know what you mean by "expand our circle of inclusion."  I feel no obligation to ratify/endorse/celebrate someone else's choices, feelings, opinions, etc.  I can be kind and friendly and welcoming to a person without being obligated to agree with, or ratify, or endorse, or celebrate, that person's subjective choices, feelings, opinions, etc. on matters of sexual behavior, "gender identity," and so on.  This is particularly so when we are in the midst of what appears to be a widespread, but still likely to be transient and inconsistent, social phenomenon.

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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31 minutes ago, Calm said:
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I recall from biology class that there are SIX biological genders.  Two of them everyone here is familiar with.  Here are the other four:  Physiology male, endocrine system female; Physiology female, endocrine system male; Both; and Neither. 

Could you provide a citation for this?

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/keithgiles/2023/02/the-6-genders-according-to-the-talmud-and-biological-science/

I thought this was interesting for the Jewish point of view…

The article references a 2018 article: Sex Redefined: The Idea of 2 Sexes Is Overly Simplistic

I think this article is flawed in its recitation of the science.  See, e.g., this 2021 article from the American College of Pediatricians: Sex is a Biological Trait of Medical Significance

An excerpt:

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ABSTRACT

In the midst of society’s questioning of the gender binary, the American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) is concerned that the field of medicine risks denying the reality of biological sex. Sex is a dimorphic, innate trait defined in relation to an organism’s biological role in reproduction. In humans, primary sex determination occurs at fertilization and is directed by a complement of sex determining genes on the X and Y chromosomes. This genetic signature is present in every nucleated somatic cell and is not altered by drugs or surgical interventions. Sex differences arise from at least four different genetic mechanisms, in addition to the actions of sex hormones and environmental influences. Consideration of these innate differences is critical to the practice of good medicine and to the development of sound public policy for children and adults alike.

The article goes on to cite the "Sex Redefined" article:

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Human sex is a dimorphic innate and immutable trait determined at fertilization

Medicine has long defined sex as a biological trait that distinguishes living things as being male or female based on the complement of sex chromosomes, the presence of distinctive reproductive organs and unambiguous genitalia.2 This definition is not arbitrary. In the life sciences, sex is defined according to whether an organism is structured to donate or receive genetic material during the reproductive process. Organisms that donate genetic material are classified as male; those that receive genetic material are classified as female. Human beings, as do all mammals, reproduce sexually. By definition, such a reproductive system is a binary system. It requires the cooperation of two distinct sets of reproductive organs that give rise to and facilitate the union of two distinct gametes, sperm and ovum, to conceive an offspring. The term male designates members of the species who have reproductive organs structured to produce sperm and to deliver this to female members of the species. The term female designates the members of the species who have reproductive organs structured to produce ova, receive sperm, then gestate and give birth to a conceived offspring. Defining sex according to how an organism is innately structured to participate in the reproduction of the species is a stable and universally applicable definition that allows the consistent differentiation of males from females even when individuals exhibit behaviors that are not culturally typical of males or females.11

Primary sex determination in humans occurs at fertilization and is dependent upon the zygote’s two sex chromosomes, or more specifically, upon the presence or absence of genetic material normally present on a Y chromosome. Barring genetic disorders, females contain two X chromosomes in every nucleated somatic cell, and males possess an X and a Y chromosome in every nucleated somatic cell.12,13 Interventions that alter a person’s sexual appearance do not alter the person’s genetic code. Therefore, sex does not change. Administering sex hormones and other drugs can alter appearance and physiology to varying degrees, but these chemicals do not change biological sex. No amount of medical intervention can “transition” any person from one sex to the other.

Disorders of sex development (DSD) are disorders - not additional sexes

Disorders of sex development (DSD), commonly referred to as intersex conditions, are maladies in which normal sexual differentiation and function are disrupted. Some argue that DSD demonstrate the existence of more than two sexes.4,14,15 However, DSD do not represent additional reproductive organs, gonads or gametes. Therefore, by definition, DSD do not constitute additional sexes. Human sex is a binary, not a spectrum. In reality, DSD are rare congenital disorders affecting 0.02% of the population in which either genitalia are ambiguous in appearance, or an individual’s sexual appearance fails to match what would be expected given the person’s sex chromosomes.16,17 Reflecting the disordered nature of these conditions, all DSD are associated with impaired fertility.18 
...
15. Ainsworth C. Sex Redefined: The Idea of 2 Sexes Is Overly Simplistic Biologists now think there is a larger spectrum than just binary female and male. Scientific American. October 2018. Available at https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/sex-redefined-the-idea-of-2-sexes-is-overly-simplistic1/ Accessed October 26, 2020.

"Human sex is a binary, not a spectrum."

This was, until quite recently, effectively a truism.  These days, it's controversial.

Thanks,

-Smac

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4 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I don't know what you mean by "expand our circle of inclusion."

I am, in the main, indifferent to how people choose to lead their lives. 

I think each of us is a son or daughter of God, and should be presumptively treated with respect and civility... 

Again, I don't know what you mean by "expand our circle of inclusion."  I feel no obligation to ratify/endorse/celebrate someone else's choices, feelings, opinions, etc.  I can be kind and friendly and welcoming to a person without being obligated to agree with, or ratify, or endorse, or celebrate, that person's subjective choices, feelings, opinions, etc. on matters of sexual behavior, "gender identity," and so on.  This is particularly so when we are in the midst of what appears to be a widespread, but still likely to be transient and inconsistent, social phenomenon.

Good question.  At the risk of oversimplifying, humans tend to categorize other humans as "us" or "them", and those within our "circle of inclusion" would be the "us" category.  Those outside are "them".  There can be disagreements among "us", and there can be respect and civility towards "them", but the one is inclusive and the other exclusive.  

But maybe I'm using a binary paradigm here when the reality is more like a spectrum.

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8 minutes ago, smac97 said:

This was, until quite recently, effectively a truism.  These days, it's controversial.

Biological science has developed over the years.

But I wasn’t interested in the science part as it wasn’t a study and I wasn’t impressed with details provided.

It was the info on the Jewish traditional genders I thought interesting.

Edited by Calm
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1 hour ago, Teancum said:

The church is all but happy to exploit their fame, whether an actor, musician, athlete and so on. But step away and hoo boy, they become a son or daughter of perdition.

To be fair, the powers that be in the person/show's marketing team seem to do the same thing by playing up the "good clean mormon" aspect. Newspaper articles about how they give up on their sport for 2 years to go on a mission. In David's case use his talent as a mission. Even when the person is not active the marketing team still promote the "mormon" aspect.

As far as the interview:

It confirms my thoughts that outside certain demographics the song wouldn't be a big thing. David seems to imply that it's pretty much the Utah bubble.


It's clear he isn't the guy saying good things about the church anymore. It's also clear he doesn't want to be the guy leaving the church and saying nothing about it.

My guess is that he'll be on MS in the next few months.

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Just now, Calm said:
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This was, until quite recently, effectively a truism.  These days, it's controversial.

Biological science has developed over the years.

"Biological science" appears to be getting some problematic, that is, non-scientific, influences exerted against it. 

See, e.g., this 2020 article: In Humans, Sex is Binary and Immutable

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Georgi K. Marinov is Postdoctoral Research Scholar at the Department of Genetics, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305


This article says nothing novel. It discusses a fact as well-established as the billions of years of evolution that shaped our species. We live in a world, however, that increasingly ignores such truths, and in which the combination of awareness and courage to set the record straight appears rare.

A disclaimer: I am not a tenured faculty member and have no job security; I am well aware that my career prospects could be jeopardized by this essay. I also write from a perspective—not widely shared—that anyone who pledges allegiance to any political party or ideology cannot rightly call himself a scientist. Political and ideological loyalties, in my view, violate the epistemic practices scientists are supposed to follow.

Look at that "disclaimer" language.  "I am well aware that my career prospects could be jeopardized by this essay."  This is both frank and troubling.

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Denying the Sex Binary

In late 2018, the current U.S. presidential administration circulated a memo directing government agencies to adopt a definition of gender “determined by the genitals that a person is born with.”1 Much outrage followed, even including protest rallies at prestigious medical schools. More than 2,600 scientists signed a statement claiming that “There are no genetic tests that can unambiguously determine gender, or even sex.”2 Nature, the world’s premier science journal, ran an editorial stating that “the research and medical community now sees sex as more complex than male and female”' and “the idea that science can make definitive conclusions about a person's sex or gender is fundamentally flawed.”3

These are remarkable statements as they are equivalent to outright denial of humans’ biological nature. Numerous publications promoted such positions. Nature had previously published an editorial titled “Sex Redefined,” boldly stating that “The idea of two sexes is simplistic. Biologists now think there is a wider spectrum than that.”4 Popular science magazines such as Scientific American and National Geographic told readers that “the science is clear and conclusive: sex is not binary,”5 a view even more aggressively pushed in mainstream media, where we regularly read that “biologists now think the idea of two sexes is inaccurate.”6

Much has been written by feminist authors about the non-binary nature of “gender,” where “gender” is defined as something “socially constructed,” distinct from sex. But biological sex itself is also under attack. Feminist philosophers such as Judith Butler and Anne Fausto-Sterling initially advanced the view that both gender and sex are “socially constructed,” denying the objective reality of binary biological sex, and academic writings promoting this view continue to be produced.7

Usually this is done by taking a list of criteria for dividing humans into two sexes—anatomical / gonadal / hormonal / chromosomal / genetic / genomic / brain / neural sex—and matching that list to examples of “intersex” conditions not fitting neatly on either side, supposedly discrediting the binary. But the topics that truly matter for understanding sex—gametes, reproduction, and evolutionary selection pressures—are missing from such treatments.

Yet this has become mainstream, and an unquestionable dogma too, even within the hard sciences. This is disastrous, as the objective truth is that sex in humans is strictly binary and immutable, for fundamental reasons that are common knowledge to all biologists taking the findings of their discipline seriously. Denying that sex in humans is binary attacks the very foundations of biological sciences. This needs to be properly summarized and openly articulated.

"{T}his has become mainstream, and an unquestionable dogma too, even within the hard sciences."

Oi.

A few more:

Understanding the Sex Binary

Here’s why human sex is binary

Another science kerfuffle in which a biology journal pushes ideology and denies the binary nature of sex

Yet another failed and ideologically-driven attempt to show that there is no sex binary in humans

Thanks,

-Smac

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@smac97, I think I was editing a previous post while you were responding to it, and my edit was to quote The Family Proclamation and pose a question.

The Family Proclamation states:  "All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose." (emphasis mine)

In your opinion, and in the context of the LDS religion, what is the gender of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

And if your answer is something like "we don't know at this time", imo that is a perfectly valid answer.

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2 hours ago, manol said:

I think the "spectrum" paradigm is correct. 

I recall from biology [edit: or psychology] class that there are SIX biological genders.  Two of them everyone here is familiar with.  Here are the other four:  Physiology male, endocrine system female; Physiology female, endocrine system male; Both; and Neither.  My understanding is that something in the range of one in ten or twenty thousand live births is one of these other four genders.  While these six biological genders are not quite what the word "spectrum" implies, they do refute the "biological gender is binary" argument.  Four out of the six biological genders being non-binary, it is not hard to imagine there being perfectly valid gender identities which do not fit the traditional binary construct. 

 

I'm not convinced that this refutes the idea that biological gender is binary.  You have two variables (physiology and endocrine) which each have a binary value (either male or female).  The fact that each variable takes a gendered value, and there are only two gendered values available for each variable, only strengthens the concept of a gender binary in my mind.    

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5 minutes ago, manol said:

@smac97, I think I was editing a previous post while you were responding to it, and my edit was to quote The Family Proclamation and pose a question.

The Family Proclamation states:  "All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose." (emphasis mine)

In your opinion, and in the context of the LDS religion, what is the gender of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

And if your answer is something like "we don't know at this time", imo that is a perfectly valid answer.

Excuse my ignorance, but will a blind blood test return a gender marker?

If it does, I personally believe that is the appropriate gender.

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16 minutes ago, ZealouslyStriving said:

Excuse my ignorance, but will a blind blood test return a gender marker?

If it does, I personally believe that is the appropriate gender.

They are casually called gender blood tests, but they are actually genetic tests which can help ID genetic sex.

https://www.healthline.com/health/pregnancy/blood-test-for-gender#:~:text=You can't take one,screening tools first and foremost.

Edited by pogi
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49 minutes ago, Stormin' Mormon said:

I'm not convinced that this refutes the idea that biological gender is binary.  You have two variables (physiology and endocrine) which each have a binary value (either male or female).  The fact that each variable takes a gendered value, and there are only two gendered values available for each variable, only strengthens the concept of a gender binary in my mind.    

Two primary biological gender variables, six possible combinations (including one non-combination) of these two variables.  I come up with six biological genders, and you come up with two, so we have a disagreement over the definitions of terms.

What word or words would you use to describe the six possible combinations of primary biological gender variables?  Imo the fact that they exist matters more than what wording we use, but if there is better wording than what I've been using, I'm open to it. 

43 minutes ago, ZealouslyStriving said:

Excuse my ignorance, but will a blind blood test return a gender marker?

If it does, I personally believe that is the appropriate gender.

I'm not a biologist, but I think a blood test result would correspond with the endocrine system.  Which doesn't resolve the question for those with both endocrine systems, nor for those with neither.

Nor would such blood tests have been available over the vast majority of human history, if that matters. 

 

Edited by manol
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1 hour ago, Duncan said:

I'd be interested to know what Tyler Glenn thinks of all of this, I remember his moment pre-covid

You don't hear about him much anymore. I think he went through an extreme anger phase. 

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Archuleta also released a live-stream online just before his single dropped.  He does a lot of explaining in it, as well.

Any would be hard-pressed to claim he's intentionally mis-representing Mormonism in how candid he when discussing it and how he continues to clarify Mormon doctrine even with his non-member fans:

 

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7 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

You don't hear about him much anymore. I think he went through an extreme anger phase. 

Yeah, he was super angry for a while, to the point that it made me even uncomfortable in some of his videos... :P

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30 minutes ago, manol said:

@smac97, I think I was editing a previous post while you were responding to it, and my edit was to quote The Family Proclamation and pose a question.

The Family Proclamation states:  "All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose." (emphasis mine)

Okay.

30 minutes ago, manol said:

In your opinion, and in the context of the LDS religion,

I don't think my opinion is authoritative or determinative.  That said, my assessment of this issue is not altered by "the context of the LDS religion."

30 minutes ago, manol said:

what is the gender

Are you asking "what is the {sex} of someone..."?

30 minutes ago, manol said:

of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

And if your answer is something like "we don't know at this time", imo that is a perfectly valid answer.

I have found this article to be pretty helpful: Understanding the Sex Binary

Some excerpts:

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Understanding the Sex Binary

Accurate, nonpoliticized descriptions of biology are essential to crafting policy to preserve the integrity of female-only spaces.

Current debates over the fundamental nature of biological sex are not merely esoteric academic musings. They have direct implications for policy related to sex-based legal protections and medicine. It truly matters whether sex categories in humans are empirically real, immutable, and binary, or are instead outdated and oppressive “social constructs” that should be abandoned.

The claim that biological sex is not binary is often used to justify the inclusion of males in female sports, prisons, and other spaces that have historically been segregated by sex for reasons of fairness and safety. For instance, ACLU lawyer Chase Strangio frequently claims that the binary concept of biological sex is a recent invention being used “exclusively for the purposes of excluding trans people from legal protections.” Last December, Scottish politician Maggie Chapman stated that false notions about the “binary and immutable” nature of sex were her primary motivation for pursuing “comprehensive gender recognition for non-binary people in Scotland.”

Those opposed to the abolition of sex categories often argue for the binary and immutable nature of sex, as well as for the importance of recognizing fundamental sex differences to protect women and girls. But while proponents of this binary and immutable notion of sex are more in line with biological reality, considerable confusion still exists about the true meaning of the “sex binary.”

Because those on both sides of this issue claim that biological facts justify their policy proposals, accurate descriptions of biology—unmarred by politics—matter now more than ever. So let’s clarify the meaning of the “sex binary” and why it’s important; explain why we should distinguish between intersex conditions (or differences/disorders of sex development) and transgenderism to avoid the “intersex trap”; and outline effective approaches to drafting legislation and policy relating to the biology of sex to preserve the integrity of female-only spaces.

He then steps in with a pretty concise explanation of the sexual binary:

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When biologists claim that “sex is binary,” they mean something straightforward: there are only two sexes. This statement is true because an individual’s sex is defined by the type of gamete (sperm or ova) their primary reproductive organs (i.e., gonads) are organized, through development, to produce. Males have primary reproductive organs organized around the production of sperm; females, ova. Because there is no third gamete type, there are only two sexes that a person can be. Sex is therefore binary.

It is important to note here that the binary nature of sex is compatible with sex ambiguity because ambiguity with respect to sex is not itself a third sex. However, many gender activists falsely assert that the “sex binary” must mean something like “every human who has ever existed and will ever exist can be unambiguously categorized as either male or female.” Given this, they contend that providing examples of people with ambiguous sexual anatomy (i.e., “intersex” conditions) not only disproves the sex binary but also demonstrates that biological sex is a meaningless and even oppressive categorization scheme. (We will leave aside for now the fact that many of these same activists do recognize an alternative version of “biological sex” in the form of gender-identity bio-essentialism, or the theory that a person’s subjective self-conception of male or female is rooted in the brain itself.)

The chain of reasoning goes something like this. Sex is not binary because intersex people exist. Their existence demonstrates that biological sex is a spectrum. Since sex is a spectrum, that means no line can be perfectly drawn separating males from females. If no single line can be drawn, then anywhere someone chooses to draw one is totally arbitrary and subjective. If it’s totally arbitrary and subjective, then that means the categories male and female are also arbitrary and subjective “social constructs” with no firm root in biological reality. If that’s the case, why are we categorizing people in law according to these arbitrary labels instead of letting people simply label themselves? To do otherwise is to oppress people based on a biological falsehood.

This is just how the argument is made, and it is made with stunning success. Children in K-12 are regularly taught these days that sex and gender exist on a spectrum. Parts of the scientific establishment and the medical profession have also embraced this idea.

"Males have primary reproductive organs organized around the production of sperm; females, ova. Because there is no third gamete type, there are only two sexes that a person can be. Sex is therefore binary."

Yep.

The whole article is worth a read.

Another: Here’s why human sex is binary

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Scientific American has a proud history as one of the world’s most distinguished magazines, predating Darwin’s On The Origin of Species and inspiring countless science enthusiasts over the centuries. What a shame, then, to see it recently fall down the rabbit hole of a pseudoscientific ideology claiming that there are more than two biological sexes, both in general and in humans specifically.

Let’s be clear: sex is binary. There are only two routes for a sexually reproducing individual’s genes to flow from one generation to the next: via either small gametes or large. There is no spectrum from sperm to egg. Individuals of any species who are shaped by evolution to reproduce via sperm are called males; those equipped to reproduce via the egg route are females.

Increasingly, however, it has become fashionable to argue that it’s all much more complicated than that. You fool — didn’t you know that clownfish can change sex? Did you know that a mole’s vagina seals shut outside the breeding season? Were you aware that one in 500 men has abnormal sex chromosomes?

These “gotchas” do not change the fact that there are only two types of gamete, or that humans produce at most one of them. A man is male by virtue of reproducing via sperm, irrespective of his chromosomes; the very fact that we are able to say that a clownfish has “changed sex” betrays the fact that we understand what makes the fish either one sex or the other.

"There are only two routes for a sexually reproducing individual’s genes to flow from one generation to the next: via either small gametes or large. There is no spectrum from sperm to egg. Individuals of any species who are shaped by evolution to reproduce via sperm are called males; those equipped to reproduce via the egg route are females."

Yep.

Another: In Humans, Sex is Binary and Immutable

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Why “Intersex” Conditions Do Not Invalidate the Sex Binary

But what about “intersex” individuals? Unfortunately, confusion and misunderstanding reign when it comes to their existence. Humans are indeed born with a variety of “intersex” conditions at low frequency, but that does not mean that these conditions are part of normal healthy variation. Humans are also born with a great variety of devastating congenital deformities and diseases, and if alien exozoologists were to write a description of Homo sapiens based on extensive observations of the population, such a description would never feature, for example, anencephaly, and neither would it include anything else but binary sex.

Extremely deleterious phenotypes, especially when their fitness is invariant with respect to environmental conditions, cannot be part of that description, as they are by definition actively eliminated from the population. The mathematics of natural selection is remorseless. For the human population, even an allele with an initial frequency as low as 0.01 and selection coefficient s = 0.05 is nearly ensured fixation. On the other hand, that should not be taken to mean that natural selection is all powerful. First, even if an allele is strongly deleterious, its frequency will not be zero, as it is constantly reintroduced by mutations at some rate µ. Second, alleles with small selective (dis)advantages are not ensured fixation. Genetic drift can lead to fixation of alleles with small selective coefficients irrespective of their effects, as long as s < ~1/Ne (Ne is the effective population size).

Therefore we cannot expect “perfection” from biological processes. Imagine that a biochemical reaction runs with a given accuracy in a finite population. The selective advantage of mutations improving its accuracy will generally be at most the fractional improvement that they confer. Thus it is not possible for selection to push the system towards absolute perfection as further fractional improvements are “invisible” to it if smaller than the selection barrier ~1/Ne. Errors are thus expected to occur everywhere, and indeed they do. This is why important genes get mutated, developmental processes get disrupted, and the results are newborns with very low fitness.

These facts bear on how we are to think about “intersex”' people. The great diversity of such conditions cannot be explored here in detail. These include Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (feminization of males due to androgen receptor mutations), Klinefelter's syndrome (47,XXY karyotype), XX male syndrome (46, XX “males” due to translocation of the master regulator SRY to the X), Turner's syndrome (45,X0) and many others.

These conditions present with a variety of phenotypes intermediate between typical male and female features, but they have one crucial commonality—individuals afflicted are almost invariably sterile;20 on the few occasions where fertility is possible, the phenotypes are mild and it is hard to even call them “intersex.” Their evolutionary fitness is therefore as negative as fitness could possibly be short of being stillborn (s = -1 for sterile individuals). Importantly, these fitness reductions are invariant to environmental variables. It is possible for a condition that is a debilitating disease under some circumstances to be beneficial under others (e.g. sickle-cell anemia and malaria). But this does not apply to the inability to produce viable gametes, which makes one unable to reproduce under all circumstances.

All “intersex” conditions, when examined, clearly arise from single-gene mutations or chromosomal aberrations on a genetic background that would have indisputably been producing male or female gametes had these mutations not occurred, and, rarely, due to chimerism (i.e. individuals made up of both male and female cells). True hermaphrodites possessing both sets of functional gonads and genitalia have never been observed in Homo sapiens.

Therefore the “intersex” argument against the sex binary is simply not valid. Intersex individuals exist only because of continuous de novo reintroduction of the relevant mutations in the population, recessive genes becoming unmasked, or disruptions of normal embryonic development.

Sex in mammals is on a fundamental level binary and immutable, and claims that “intersex'” individuals disprove that can only be made in the absence of any consideration of the biological nature of humans and how our evolutionary history has shaped our biology. 

  • "{DSD} conditions present with a variety of phenotypes intermediate between typical male and female features, but they have one crucial commonality—individuals afflicted are almost invariably sterile. ... It is possible for a condition that is a debilitating disease under some circumstances to be beneficial under others (e.g. sickle-cell anemia and malaria). But this does not apply to the inability to produce viable gametes, which makes one unable to reproduce under all circumstances."
  • "All 'intersex' conditions, when examined, clearly arise from single-gene mutations or chromosomal aberrations on a genetic background that would have indisputably been producing male or female gametes had these mutations not occurred, and, rarely, due to chimerism (i.e. individuals made up of both male and female cells). True hermaphrodites possessing both sets of functional gonads and genitalia have never been observed in Homo sapiens."
  • "Therefore the 'intersex' argument against the sex binary is simply not valid. Intersex individuals exist only because of continuous de novo reintroduction of the relevant mutations in the population, recessive genes becoming unmasked, or disruptions of normal embryonic development."
  • "Sex in mammals is on a fundamental level binary and immutable, and claims that 'intersex' individuals disprove that can only be made in the absence of any consideration of the biological nature of humans and how our evolutionary history has shaped our biology."

Many of the popular discussions and debates about "gender identity" and the like are often stymied in ambiguous and equivocative usage of key words and concepts, such as "man," "woman," and "gender."  It can be helpful, then, to create a legally authoritative set of definitions for terms about which there is room for misunderstanding.  See, e.g., this May 2023 article:

Quote

Lawmakers in Montana, Tennessee and Kansas have voted in the past few weeks to narrowly define who is "female" and who is "male" in state law using such terms as "gametes," "ova," "sex chromosomes," "genitalia" and "immutable biological sex."
...
The Kansas law legally defines a woman as someone whose reproductive system is designed to produce ova, and a man as someone whose reproductive systems are designed to fertilize ova.

Various DSDs can be discussed, but they are a really small percentage of of the population.  Meanwhile, the vast majority of the popular discussions about "gender identity" and such do not pertain to DSDs, but to people who have some sort of Gender Dysphoria, or else are not considered to have a mental disorder, and are therefore given popular labels/descriptors ("transgender," "gender diverse," "gender nonconforming," "genderqueer," "nonbinary," etc.).  None of this, though, has much to do with the sexual binary.

So that's my position.  Sexual binary, not a "spectrum" of sexes.  Differentiation into the two categories based on reproductive system design / gametes.  DSDs do not affect the reality of the sexual binary.

Thanks,

-Smac

Link to comment
45 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Are you asking "what is the {sex} of someone..."?

No.  Imo in this case the word used matters.

I'm asking "what is the gender of someone...?".  Gender is the word used in The Family Proclamation, so gender is the word in my question.

Let me ask in a slightly different way: 

What is the gender of the spirit of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

And if your answer (which imo was not an answer to my specific question) doesn't change, well at least I've clarified my question. 

45 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Various DSDs can be discussed, but they are a really small percentage of of the population. 

My reading of The Family Proclamation is inclusive of all, even really small percentages of the population:  "All human beings... "

So, how does it work for the really small percentage that I'm bringing to your attention?

Edited by manol
Link to comment
35 minutes ago, manol said:
Quote
Quote

what is the gender of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

Are you asking "what is the {sex} of someone..."?

No.  Imo in this case the word used matters.

I appreciate the clarity and concision.  Such things are much needed in these discussions.

35 minutes ago, manol said:

I'm asking "what is the gender of someone...?".  Gender is the word used in The Family Proclamation, so gender is the word in my question.

I have always construed "gender" as used in the Proclamation as being a synonym for "sex."  Apparently, this is the construction intended by the Church.  See The Eternal Family Class Preparation Material (Religion 200), Lesson 7:

Quote

The term gender can have different meanings for different people. As explained in the Church handbook, “The intended meaning of gender in the family proclamation is biological sex at birth” (General Handbook: Serving in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 38.6.23).

So to revise my previous question: Are you asking "what is the {biological sex at birth} of someone..."?

Or are you applying some other definition to, or interpretation of, "gender" as referenced int he Proclamation?

35 minutes ago, manol said:

Let me ask in a slightly different way: 

What is the gender of the spirit of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system? 

Male or female, depending on the individual.  I think the sexual binary remains, with differentiation into the two categories based on the individual's reproductive system design / gametes. 

35 minutes ago, manol said:

And if your answer (which imo was not an answer to my specific question) doesn't change, well at least I've clarified my question. 

Your question is compound: "What is the gender of the spirit of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system?"

I don't know which DSD you are referencing here, or which persons.  I can't really answer such a vague question, particularly given that you are now asking about the "gender" ("sex?") of a hypothetical person's spirit

I don't think DSDs will persist in the Hereafter, nor do I think they are manifested in our spirit bodies.  So your question may be a non sequitur.  I don't think that I agree with its premise (namely, that a person whose physical body is experiencing a disorder (some sort of DSD) will also have a spirit body that is also so disordered).  I see DSDs as being no different from any other illness or disorder of the temporal body.  Such disorders will not be with us in the resurrection:

Quote

"All men will come from the grave as they lie down, whether old or young" (TPJS, p. 199). And he who quickeneth all things shall "change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body" (Philip. 3:21). "The body will come forth as it is laid to rest, for there is no growth nor development in the grave. As it is laid down, so will it arise, and changes to perfection will come by the law of restitution. But the spirit will continue to expand and develop, and the body, after the resurrection will develop to the full stature of man" (Joseph F. Smith, IE 7 [June 1904]:623-24).

 

35 minutes ago, manol said:

My reading of The Family Proclamation is inclusive of all, even really small percentages of the population:  "All human beings... "

I agree.

35 minutes ago, manol said:

So, how does it work for the really small percentage that I'm bringing to your attention?

I hope the foregoing is responsive to your inquiry.  If not, please clarify a bit more.

Thanks,

-Smac

Link to comment
3 hours ago, smac97 said:

I am, in the main, indifferent to how other people choose to lead their lives.  I want us to be happy, so I hope each of us makes healthy and smart choices and behaviors.  And, of course, the good ol' "Your rights end where mine begin" aphorism merits some attention.

I think each of us is a son or daughter of God, and should be presumptively treated with respect and civility.

That sounds sensible.

3 hours ago, smac97 said:

  I become concerned when elements of society, under the auspices of "empathy" or "compassion" or "love" or "acceptance," etc., start attempting to control the speech of others, to silence and/or punish speech by weaponizing the power of the State (go, JK Rowling!) and by other means, to rationalize radical and irreversible and damaging (sterilizing) and largely untested medical procedures (on minors, at least), to erase legitimate and important distinctions between men and women and male and female spaces (sports, bathrooms, prisons, etc.), and so on.

That is insane combined with a healthy dose of lies.

I have a younger friend (early 20s) who got gender affirming top surgery two days ago. He has always been pretty withdrawn and had an air of melancholy about him. When he came out as transgender a few years ago he started to come out of his shell but felt completely uncomfortable in his own skin. Once the surgery was scheduled he was very happy and excited. It was like a cloud of gloom departed. Will that last forever at this intensity? Probably not. Will he be happier in general? Probably.

 

 

 

And I would never speak ill of J.K. Rowling who is of course “a most godly man”:

 

 

Link to comment
2 hours ago, smac97 said:

So that's my position.  Sexual binary, not a "spectrum" of sexes.  Differentiation into the two categories based on reproductive system design / gametes.  DSDs do not affect the reality of the sexual binary.

Exceptions to the binary don’t impact whether there is a binary? That is just ridiculous.

2 hours ago, smac97 said:

Various DSDs can be discussed, but they are a really small percentage of the population. 

Saying something is rare doesn’t make it go away as an exception to the model you want.

2 hours ago, smac97 said:

Meanwhile, the vast majority of the popular discussions about "gender identity" and such do not pertain to DSDs, but to people who have some sort of Gender Dysphoria, or else are not considered to have a mental disorder, and are therefore given popular labels/descriptors ("transgender," "gender diverse," "gender nonconforming," "genderqueer," "nonbinary," etc.).  None of this, though, has much to do with the sexual binary.

It wouldn’t have much to do with the sexual binary if you believe that sex and gender are not strictly the same. The problem is you do tie them together so if sexuality is a spectrum or more than a binary it presents problems if you also want a gender binary.

Not only that it has really odd theological implications:

Have a hypothetical. Let’s say a female spirit body comes to Earth. The parents are not church members. Their child has ambiguous sexuality and they choose a hormone regime and gender affirming surgery to make their child present as a boy. Does a spirit being not matching its body cause dysphoria? I don’t know so we will assume he doesn’t have such dysphoria in life or ignores it if he does. This boy grows up, joins the church, goes on a mission, falls in love with a girl, and they are married in the temple. They have four children. Then he dies and finds out he is actually a woman. What happens? Does the covenant still hold? Are the children even his in the eternities? Can someone be sealed to two mothers? What about the marriage they built? Sealing was just never actually valid? They both have to find husbands now?

Edit: This is rare but still very important to those it might impact. Of course it being rare also relies on the idea that all spirit bodies match the biological sex of the body they are put in. I don’t know of any scriptural guarantee that this will be the case.

Edited by The Nehor
Link to comment
2 hours ago, smac97 said:

[quoting from the General Handbook]: “The intended meaning of gender in the family proclamation is biological sex at birth

... Your question is compound: "What is the gender of the spirit of someone whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female; or whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male; or who has both physiologies and both endocrine systems; or who has neither physiology and neither endocrine system?"

I don't know which DSD you are referencing here, or which persons.  I can't really answer such a vague question, particularly given that you are now asking about the "gender" ("sex?") of a hypothetical person's spirit.

Thank you, your response was helpful.

And yes I did ask a compound question, which could have been vague, so let me narrow it down to four single-case and more focused questions, using some of your wording and some of mine:

1. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female?

2. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male?

3. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is both male and female, and whose endocrine system is both male and female?

4. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is neither male nor female, and whose endocrine system is neither male nor female?

Edited by manol
Link to comment
1 hour ago, The Nehor said:

I have a younger friend (early 20s) who got gender affirming top surgery two days ago. He has always been pretty withdrawn and had an air of melancholy about him. When he came out as transgender a few years ago he started to come out of his shell but felt completely uncomfortable in his own skin. Once the surgery was scheduled he was very happy and excited. It was like a cloud of gloom departed. Will that last forever at this intensity? Probably not. Will he be happier in general? Probably. 

This mirrors my son's experience.  Multiple relatives who only see him at long intervals (like weddings and funerals) remarked that this was the first time he seemed "genuinely comfortable in his skin."  Those exact words.  

By the way, you said it far better than I could:  "Exceptions to the binary don’t impact whether there is a binary? That is just ridiculous."

Edited by manol
Link to comment
36 minutes ago, The Nehor said:
Quote

I become concerned when elements of society, under the auspices of "empathy" or "compassion" or "love" or "acceptance," etc., start attempting to control the speech of others, to silence and/or punish speech by weaponizing the power of the State (go, JK Rowling!) and by other means, to rationalize radical and irreversible and damaging (sterilizing) and largely untested medical procedures (on minors, at least), to erase legitimate and important distinctions between men and women and male and female spaces (sports, bathrooms, prisons, etc.), and so on.

That is insane combined with a healthy dose of lies.

You are proving my point about "silenc{ing} ... speech."

36 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

I have a younger friend (early 20s) who got gender affirming top surgery two days ago. He has always been pretty withdrawn and had an air of melancholy about him. When he came out as transgender a few years ago he started to come out of his shell but felt completely uncomfortable in his own skin. Once the surgery was scheduled he was very happy and excited. It was like a cloud of gloom departed. Will that last forever at this intensity? Probably not. Will he be happier in general? Probably.

We are getting lots and lots of mixed messaging about the long-term effects and efficacy of "gender affirming care."

2004 news item: Sex changes are not effective, say researchers

Quote

There is no conclusive evidence that sex change operations improve the lives of transsexuals, with many people remaining severely distressed and even suicidal after the operation, according to a medical review conducted exclusively for Guardian Weekend tomorrow.

The review of more than 100 international medical studies of post-operative transsexuals by the University of Birmingham's aggressive research intelligence facility (Arif) found no robust scientific evidence that gender reassignment surgery is clinically effective.

2009: Quality of life 15 years after sex reassignment surgery for transsexualism

Quote

Fifteen years after sex reassignment operation quality of life is lower in the domains general health, role limitation, physical limitation, and personal limitation.

2011 Study in National Library of Medicine: Long-Term Follow-Up of Transsexual Persons Undergoing Sex Reassignment Surgery: Cohort Study in Sweden

Quote

Conclusions

Persons with transsexualism, after sex reassignment, have considerably higher risks for mortality, suicidal behaviour, and psychiatric morbidity than the general population. Our findings suggest that sex reassignment, although alleviating gender dysphoria, may not suffice as treatment for transsexualism, and should inspire improved psychiatric and somatic care after sex reassignment for this patient group.

2012: Gender reassignment surgery - a 13 year review of surgical outcomes

Quote

CONCLUSION: Regarding male to female GRS, a review of the current literature demonstrated scarce description of complications and their treatment options. These findings motivated a review of our surgical outcomes. Results showed a great number of adverse events, although functionality preserved. Comparision of our outcomes with recent publications additionally showed that treatment options provide satisfying results. Moreover, outcomes reaffirm penile inversion vaginoplasty in combination with glans-derived sensate clitoroplasty as a safe technique. Nevertheless, discussing and improving surgical techniques in order to reduce complications and their influence on patient's quality of life is still strongly necessary and theme of our future reports.

2016: Long-Term Follow-Up of Individuals Undergoing Sex-Reassignment Surgery: Somatic Morbidity and Cause of Death

Quote

Conclusion

Of 98% of all Danish transsexuals who officially underwent SRS from 1978 through 2010, one in three had somatic morbidity and approximately 1 in 10 had died. No significant differences in somatic morbidity or mortality were found between male-to-female and female-to-male individuals. Despite the young average age at death and the relatively larger number of individuals with somatic morbidity, the present study design does not allow for determination of casual relations between, for example, specific types of hormonal or surgical treatment received and somatic morbidity and mortality.

I think "casual relations" is supposed to be "causal relations."

2020 Public Discourse article: Transition as Treatment: The Best Studies Show the Worst Outcomes

Quote

The treatment for this particular disorder is severe: lifelong experimental medicalization, sterilization, and complete removal of healthy body parts—a treatment Dr. Ray Blanchard, one of the world’s foremost sexologists, calls “palliative.” In spite of its severity, however, medical gender transition is no longer a rarity. It is the recommended treatment for gender dysphoria, a diagnosable disorder of incongruence between one’s felt “gender” and one’s natal sex, the prevalence of which is increasing tremendously throughout the world. More and more children and adolescents are being diagnosed with gender dysphoria, and are undergoing medical treatment prior even to completing puberty.

For those who express caution or concern there is a familiar retort: “Trust the experts.” If you don’t, “you’re a bigot.”

This is a troubling phenomenon.

Quote

This argument, however, makes a mockery of the fact that three of the most influential sex researchers of the last couple decades—Ray Blanchard, Michael Bailey, and the recently vindicated Ken Zucker—all have problems with the affirmation-only transition narrative that is currently being promoted. You could add to this list names like James Cantor, Eric Vilain, Stephen Levine, Debra Soh, and Lisa Littman.

I invite you to look with me at the data that these and other researchers draw from. What does the peer-reviewed research say about the effectiveness of medical transition for gender dysphoria? Do puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, mastectomies, vaginoplasties, and phalloplasties successfully alleviate the mental and emotional distress that gender-dysphoric persons face? Findings are varied, as are the political and philosophical perspectives of the researchers; but a careful reading of the literature demonstrates that the best studies show the worst outcomes for those who undergo medical transition.

2020 Latter to the Editor (American Journal of Psychiatry) : Confounding Effects on Mental Health Observations After Sex Reassignment Surgery

Quote

TO THE EDITOR: Bränström and Pachankis (1) report that Swedes with gender dysphoria who had undergone sex reassignment surgery in the decade to 2015 had a declining need for mental health treatment (as shown in Figure 1 in the article), leading them to consider that sex reassignment surgery improves mental health. However, the same data may be modeled in a way that leads to the opposite conclusion.

Except for a reduction after the perioperative year, Bränström and Pachankis found no further significant decrease in mental health treatment between the first and ninth years after surgery.
...
Therefore, accounting for the increase in mental health issues from 2005, together with an assumption of increased mental health treatment due to this surgery, fits the data in the article and overturns the authors’ conclusions, suggesting that sex reassignment surgery is in fact associated with increased mental health treatment.

2020: Long-term effect of gender-affirming hormone treatment on depression and anxiety symptoms in transgender people: A prospective cohort study

Quote

Results

From T0 to T1, symptomatology was significantly decreased for depression (P < .001) and non-significantly reduced for anxiety (P = .37). Scores on the MSPSS predicted reduction in depression, while scores on the AQ-Short predicted reduction in anxiety.

2020: Correction of a Key Study: No Evidence of “Gender-Affirming” Surgeries Improving Mental Health (Society of Evidence Based Gender Medicine) :

Quote

Allowing scientific debate in transgender medicine improves evidence basis

Yes, it should.  Some, unfortunately, want to stifle/censor such debate.  Bummer, that.

Quote

In October 2019, the American Journal of Psychiatry (AJP) published a study from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, and the Yale School of Public Health which reported that “gender-affirming" surgeries for gender dysphoric patients are associated with improved mental health outcomes (1). Looking at mental health utilization in the year 2015, a retrospective analysis showed that the more time passed since surgery, the fewer mental services were utilized by patients, with an average 8% reduction in mental health utilization for each year following surgery. From this, the study concluded that surgery has a beneficial effect on mental health, and that benefits continue to accrue over time. However, following a reanalysis of the data, this conclusion has now been officially corrected to indicate that there is “no advantage of surgery.”

First: "{T}he study concluded that surgery has a beneficial effect on mental health, and that benefits continue to accrue over time."

Then: "However, following a reanalysis of the data, this conclusion has now been officially corrected to indicate that there is no advantage of surgery.'”

This was not a minor "correction."  It was essentially a 180° reversal on and repudiation of the study.

Quote

It is SEGM’s view that the data presented in the original study and the subsequent re-analysis do not support the claim of an expected "reduction in mental health treatment as a function of time since completing such treatment” (14).  After the reanalysis of the data, we conclude the following:

  • The mental health needs of people suffering from gender dysphoria are significantly greater than those of the general population, which confirms previous research
  • No mental health benefit of hormonal interventions was demonstrated
  • No mental health benefit of "gender-affirming" surgery was demonstrated
  • Specific to the question of longitudinal association between time from surgery and mental health outcomes, due to unaddressed study design limitations, no improvement of mental health with time after surgery was demonstrated
  • Despite the higher rate of suicide attempts requiring hospitalization in the "surgery" group, the study design precludes the assertion that that "gender-affirming" surgery is harmful

Wow.  Wow.

Quote

We applaud the AJP and the study authors for addressing some of the concerns expressed by researchers and scientists regarding the flawed methodology of the study and the problematic conclusion, and for issuing a correction to the study’s key finding. We are heartened that the Karolinska Institute, home of the study’s primary author, promptly acknowledged the correction. More recently, Yale University's School of Public Health, the home of the study’s other author, has also replaced its news story lauding the original study findings with an acknowledgement of the correction.

Unfortunately, the original study with its misleading title and incorrect conclusion continues to be available on the AJP's website. The original, uncorrected study also remained part of Continuing Medical Education courses by Medscape, which is relied on by clinicians worldwide for accurate, evidence-based information. [Update November 4th, 2020: We thank Medscape for taking our concern seriously and for initiating the process of issuing a correction, as well as notifying the clinicians who have already received the CME credit associated with this study of the significant change in the study's main conclusion.] The Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health, disseminating information to 180 schools and programs in public health, has yet to correct its publication. 

Gender dysphoric patients and the clinicians who care for them need quality, accurate information to make informed decisions. This is especially true for adolescents and young adults, who are currently the vast majority of patients presenting to gender clinics, and whose decisions will have profound, life-long implications. It’s critical that the AJP update the original study’s title and conclusion in order to reflect this critical correction. It is also urgent that all organizations that had disseminated the incorrect conclusions publicize the fact that the conclusions have now been corrected, and that any treatment guidelines or recommendations based on the original finding are promptly updated to reflect this new information.

"Gender dysphoric patients and the clinicians who care for them need quality, accurate information to make informed decisions."

Indeed.

And yet we also have this undated statement from Cornell University: What does the scholarly research say about the effect of gender transition on transgender well-being?

Quote

Overview

We conducted a systematic literature review of all peer-reviewed articles published in English between 1991 and June 2017 that assess the effect of gender transition on transgender well-being. We identified 55 studies that consist of primary research on this topic, of which 51 (93%) found that gender transition improves the overall well-being of transgender people, while 4 (7%) report mixed or null findings. We found no studies concluding that gender transition causes overall harm. As an added resource, we separately include 17 additional studies that consist of literature reviews and practitioner guidelines.

Bottom Line

This search found a robust international consensus in the peer-reviewed literature that gender transition, including medical treatments such as hormone therapy and surgeries, improves the overall well-being of transgender individuals. The literature also indicates that greater availability of medical and social support for gender transition contributes to better quality of life for those who identify as transgender.

2021: Regret after Gender-affirmation Surgery: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Prevalence

Quote

Based on this review, there is an extremely low prevalence of regret in transgender patients after GAS. We believe this study corroborates the improvements made in regard to selection criteria for GAS. However, there is high subjectivity in the assessment of regret and lack of standardized questionnaires, which highlight the importance of developing validated questionnaires in this population.

2021: New Study Shows Transgender People Who Receive Gender-Affirming Surgery Are Significantly Less Likely To Experience Psychological Distress Or Suicidal Ideation

Quote

A new study published today in JAMA Surgery found that gender-affirming surgery is associated with improved mental health outcomes among transgender people. The study was authored by researchers at Harvard Medical School, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, The Fenway Institute at Fenway Health, and the Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital. It is the first large-scale, controlled study to demonstrate an association between gender-affirming surgery and improved mental health outcomes and adds important new knowledge to the field as there is little high-quality evidence regarding the mental health effects of gender-affirming surgery.

2021 article: The grim reality of gender reassignment

Quote

Lisa Littman, a doctor and researcher, recently surveyed ‘detransitioners’ — people who thought they were transgender then changed their minds. The majority, 55 per cent, ‘felt that they did not receive an adequate evaluation from a doctor or mental health professional before starting transition.’ Sadly, it seems, their identity issues were more complicated than simply being trans. Many of these individuals are now living with the consequences of medical treatments that failed to help their gender issues and may have caused permanent physical and psychological damage.
...

Transgender activists focus on the treatments’ satisfaction rates, insisting that regret is rare. According to data collected by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), that would appear to be true. However, focusing on patient satisfaction risks losing sight of the bigger picture of long-term outcomes.

The burden of proof, after all, ought to be on those wishing to conduct an experiment. So far, results here don’t impress. In 2004, the Guardian commissioned research from Birmingham University which looked at more than 100 follow-up studies of post-operative transsexuals. Researchers found no conclusive evidence that gender reassignment is beneficial for patients. The trials were often flawed, with results skewed in favour of physical rather than therapeutic interventions. Potential complications of hormones and genital surgery, including deep vein thrombosis and incontinence, were also not always properly taken into account. Some studies failed to track patients.

A robust follow-up is a 2011 study by the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, which examined the outcomes of more than 300 patients over three decades. Its findings starkly contradict the activist narrative. Around ten years after surgery is when a post-operative transsexual person’s mental health can begin to most rapidly deteriorate. Post-operative transsexuals also appeared to be at a higher risk of killing themselves than comparable non-transgender peers. 

As Ryan Anderson, author of When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment has documented, a more recent 2014 research review conducted by Hayes Inc. gave studies of gender reassignment treatments its lowest rating for quality. It said that: ‘Evidence regarding quality of life and function in male-to-female adults was very sparse.’ In 2016, under the Obama administration, a low evidence base was cited as a reason not to cover sex reassignment surgeries as part of the government’s Medicare plans. It was noted that ‘many studies that reported positive outcomes were exploratory type studies (case-series and case-control) with no confirmatory follow-up.’

2022 study: Long-term Outcomes After Gender-Affirming Surgery: 40-Year Follow-up Study

Quote

Gender-affirming surgery is a durable treatment that improves overall patient well-being. High patient satisfaction, improved dysphoria, and reduced mental health comorbidities persist decades after GAS without any reported patient regret.

2022 article from Florida Agency for Health Care Administration: Let Kids Be Kids

Quote

On April 20, 2022, the Florida Department of Health issued guidance[ application/pdf ] related to the treatment of gender dysphoria in children and adolescents. In accordance with Chapter 59G-1035, Florida Administrative Code, the Secretary of the Agency for Health Care Administration requested [ pdf 167.3 kB ] that Florida Medicaid program review whether treatments are consistent with widely accepted professional medical standards. This report was completed on June 2, 2022, [ pdf 128.6 kB ] and found that several services for the treatment of gender dysphoria – i.e., sex reassignment surgery, cross-sex hormones, and puberty blockers – are not consistent with widely accepted professional medical standards and are experimental and investigational with the potential for harmful long term affects.

What You Should Know

The Agency’s report summarizes the scientific research about the effectiveness of treatment for gender dysphoria for children. Research found:

  • Scientific studies supporting hormone replacement therapy, puberty blockers, and sex reassignment surgery for treating gender dysphoria are weak to very weak.
  • The evidence showing benefits from hormone replacement therapies for gender dysphoria is very weak.
  • Scientific studies do not show that the use of puberty blockers improves mental health.
  • There is a lack of long term, follow-up studies after sex reassignment surgery.
  • There are no randomized control trials on the effectiveness of “gender affirming" treatment.

In clinical research, randomized controlled trials are the gold standard for demonstrating the effectiveness and safety of a new treatment. Read more about randomized control trials at the National Institutes of Health.

2023 news article: Trans surgery nightmares revealed: 81% endure pain in the five years after gender-change procedures, more than half say having sex is painful - and a third are left incontinent, survey shows

Quote

One of the first studies into the side effects of transgender surgeries has revealed alarmingly high rates of post-op pain, aching during intercourse, and bladder problems, raising troubling questions for this new frontier of medicine.  

A huge majority - 81 percent - of those who had gender-affirming surgery in the past five years said they endured pain simply from moving around in the weeks and months after going under the knife.

Researchers from the University of Florida and Brooks Rehabilitation, a health non-profit, showed that more than half of trans surgery patients endured pain during sex, and nearly a third could not control their bladders.
...
73358889-12312219-DailyMail_com_was_able

'There is a high percentage reporting musculoskeletal pain, difficulty moving, and pelvic floor dysfunction,' said Dr Alappattu, adding that more research is needed in a poorly-understood area.

'In terms of getting information related to the efficacy of these types of treatments … we still have a lot of work to do.'

Surgically altering male and female genitals to match those of the opposite sex — known as vaginoplasties and phalloplasties — are widely understood to be tough and problematic procedures.

Women who transition to become men may opt to have a penis constructed from tissue extracted from their arms, although this procedure is also complex, and the result is still markedly different to a biological penis.  

Removing the breasts of female-to-male transitioners is simpler, but can also lead to pain, infections, and such problems as stitches bursting apart, particularly on overweight patients.
...

81 percent endured pain in their lower back, groin, pelvis, chest, or shoulders in the weeks, months, and even years after their procedures, researchers found.

Another 57 percent found sexual intercourse painful.

Meanwhile, 29 percent suffered urinary incontinence or a frequent and urgent need to go to the bathroom, researchers found.

2023: As Spain advances trans rights, Sweden backtracks on gender-affirming treatments for teens

Quote

Sweden, a pioneer in LGBTQ rights, is now restricting gender-affirming treatments for minors, citing concerns about their long-term side effects.

While Spain pushes ahead with laws making it easier for teenagers to change gender, other European countries that previously championed transgender rights are quietly backtracking.

The U-turns come amid a sharp rise in people reporting gender dysphoria - where people feel that the gender assigned to them at birth is not the one they identify with.

Sweden, known as a pioneer in LGBTQ rights, started restricting gender-affirming hormone therapy for minors - allowing it only in very rare cases - a year ago.
...

'The risks outweigh the benefits'

Back in 2015, the Swedish health authority had stated that puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones were “safe”. These treatments are designed to help people with gender dysphoria transition from their biological sex to the gender they personally identify with.

Sweden’s National Board of Health and Welfare explains that the reason behind the rollback is that little is known about the effects of these treatments over the long term and "the risks outweigh the benefits currently".

I wish your young friend well.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, manol said:

Thank you, your response was helpful.

And yes I did ask a compound question, which could have been vague, so let me narrow it down to four single-case and more focused questions, using some of your wording and some of mine:

1. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is male and whose endocrine system is female?

2. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is female and whose endocrine system is male?

3. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is both male and female, and whose endocrine system is both male and female?

4. What is the biological sex at birth of a person whose physiology is neither male nor female, and whose endocrine system is neither male nor female?

Post of the year, decade or however long this topic has been in threads. Manol, I could gush about you, but your so humble, I almost feel bad gushing about you and your wonderful posts. :) 

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