Have scientists given up trying to explain transgender?

Nov 28, 2018 by

by Michael Cook, MercatorNet:

A peer-reviewed international journal suggests that reincarnation might be a factor.

The phenomenon of transgender identities is a mystery which has thus far has no scientific explanation. But does it need one? An explanation is a double-edged sword and a number of observers are saying No. Without an explanation, there is the danger that medicine will revert to describing it as a form of mental illness. With one, there is the even greater danger that critics will try to “fix it”, leading to human rights abuses.

So, for the time being at least, apologists for the transgender phenomenon are treading water without one.

Transgender journalist Alex Barasch, who writes for publications like the Washington Post, Variety and Slate, argued earlier this year that seeking scientific explanations for transgender identities could do more harm than good. “The unfortunate reality is that biological essentialism doesn’t always help the cause,” he wrote. (“Biological essentialism” means what journalists normally describe as “the facts”.) Brain scans and genetics are sending mixed signals.

It doesn’t help the LGBTQ community to pin our validity on what we might learn, if only we could scan the right brains or pinpoint the right genes — and if we trust the volume of the frontal cortex over what a person tells us about themselves, we deny them their autonomy and their humanity. Rather than waiting for firmer biological footing, those who really want to advance the cause should start by believing trans people when they speak up about who they are.

However, scientists are insatiable in their search for causes. A political cause without a scientific cause will eventually deflate into no cause at all. So, moving on from biology, some transgender scientists are searching further afield.

In its most recent online publication, the International Journal of Sexual Health, for instance, features an article which proposes that one cause might be reincarnation. Yes, reincarnation. This is a theme which surfaces in manga comics and very weird blogs, but now it is part of the growing body of evidence supporting trans science.

Read here


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