Clips from a new HBO documentary on transgender children are making the rounds on social media. Commenters have savaged the clips, with one pundit suggesting that the kids’ parents should be hauled “away in handcuffs.”
Filmed over five years, HBO’s ‘Transhood’ follows four children as they grow up transgender in Kansas City. Their parents, by and large, are supportive and push the kids to come out, to dress as the opposite gender in public and, in the case of one teenager, inject their daughter with testosterone.
The documentary was released earlier this month, but one clip went viral over the weekend. In it, four-year-old Phoenix’ mother takes him to a Unitarian Church service, and brings him to the lectern to tell the congregation that he is in fact a girl. Phoenix changes his mind about speaking, saying he is “shy,” but his mother interjects to tell the congregation that “Phoenix would like you to know that she’s a girl and she prefers ‘She’ and ‘Her’ pronouns.”
— I,Hypocrite (@lporiginalg) November 22, 2020
The churchgoers respond with a chant of “May you be well, safe, and whole. We honor you exactly as you are.”
“In a healthy and well adjusted society, this video would end with the police breaking down the door and hauling every adult away in handcuffs,” conservative pundit Matt Walsh wrote. “We do not live in such a society.”
In a healthy and well adjusted society, this video would end with the police breaking down the door and hauling every adult away in handcuffs. We do not live in such a society.
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) November 23, 2020
A slew of comments accused the kids’ parents of “psychological abuse” and “brainwashing.”
Disgusting child abuse. Decisions like that are for adults. Not to brainwashed children. https://t.co/WSeVeMI25V
— DCan865 (@Knoxvillev865) November 23, 2020
Children this young shouldn’t even know what most of those words mean. https://t.co/LOBN5XX2nz
— Cassandra Fairbanks (@CassandraRules) November 23, 2020
An unbelievable amount of sadness and cringe in this video. https://t.co/xpLZmzIDNl
— Fr. Leo Patalinghug (@FatherLeoFeeds) November 23, 2020
Tellingly, the mother of another trans teen featured in the documentary informs the film crew at one point “my mother thinks I’m a child abuser.”
In Phoenix’ case, the four-year-old eventually spends more time with his grandfather, plays with other boys in school, and resumes his life as a boy. According to a review by conservative watchdog group Newsbusters, his mother, Molly, tells the film’s director that her pushing him toward living as a girl “was a huge mistake. Children are not transgender. He’s a boy. He was born a boy. He’s always been a boy. He’ll always be a boy.”
Despite stirring revulsion online, ‘Transhood’ has earned the praise of the media, with The Guardian calling it “raw, joyous and heartbreaking,” and TIME magazine describing it as “a call to action,” at a time when the Trump administration has moved to forbid transgender people from openly serving in the military and moved to protect religious businesses who want to refuse service from transgender customers.
Though The Guardian described the Trump administration as unleashing a “wave” of restrictions on transgender rights, parents who want their children to transition often face little opposition. In Kansas City alone, adults, teens and children can avail of “a full spectrum of therapeutic, psychological, psychiatric, medical, surgical, endocrine and aesthetic” treatments at the Transgender Institute.
Hormone treatment is widely available throughout the US, schools and teachers are increasingly encouraging, and arguments against childhood transitioning are often sidelined and written off as hate speech. Furthermore, should Joe Biden be inaugurated in January, the Democrat has promised to pass the Equality Act in his first 100 days in the White House. This act would add a person’s “gender identity” to the list of protected classes under Title IX of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and could override a parent’s decision to forbid their child from seeking gender reassignment.
Across the Atlantic, in the UK, the transgender movement is equally emboldened, despite a Conservative government in London. More than 2,700 children were referred to the NHS’ Tavistock gender identity clinic last year, some as young as 10. Only now is the clinic being sued for doling out puberty blockers to kids. Meanwhile, the taxpayer-funded BBC has produced children’s programs about transgenderism, ‘Harry Potter’ author JK Rowling has inspired a massive media backlash for questioning some of the movement’s excesses, and one transgender charity has lobbied teachers to recommend puberty blockers for children as young as 12.
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