Sunday, February 28, 2016

Gender Fluidity: Political Correctness and the Safe Schools Coalition

I don’t know about you, but back when I was growing up there were only two genders, male and female. But these days, apparently, gender identity is not so simple. Following on from the sexual revolution of the 1960s, feminist-inspired social scientists in the 1970s challenged the traditional view that a person’s gender reflects a person’s physical sex. The traditional view that boys are boys and girls are girls was replaced with a view that believes that gender is a social construct, that gender differences are basically just an invention of society.

The view that gender is just a social construct that is potentially subject to change is held by increasing numbers of people today. And so we have a significant number of people in Western nations in particular who subscribe to the view that gender is a person’s self-representation as either male or female or anything in between, depending on how that person feels. As a result, you do not have to go far these days to hear people talking about being gender diverse, gender fluid, inter-gender, gender neutral, a-gender, non-gendered, non-binary, gender queer, or bi-gender.

The most famous gender fluid person in the world today is probably Miley Cyrus. The girl who became famous in the role of Hannah Montana now describes herself as being gender fluid. To quote Cyrus, gender “has nothing to do with any parts of me or how I dress or how I look. It’s literally just how I feel.”

And it is not just sexually emancipated American celebrities who are promoting this kind of view. Here in Australia, gender fluidity has seemingly become a concept that is politically correct. This can be seen especially in the agenda of the ironically named Safe Schools Coalition, which (as of 28 February 2016) boasts that they have 515 schools signed up to their program, over 15,000 trained school staff, covering over 400,000 students. Taking a leaf out of the book of the advocates for marriage equality, they have chosen a positive but polarizing term by which to identify their organization, a name that implies that anyone who opposes their views must be in favor of unsafe schools. But regardless of their name, it is necessary to recognize their agenda, and to bring it under scrutiny. Just how safe or healthy are the policies of the Safe Schools Coalition?

A quick perusal of the resources page of the Safe Schools Coalition website is enough to understand their agenda. “Gender is not uniform,” they say, meaning boys can wear girls’ uniforms if they want to, and vice versa; or as they say: “everyone should be able to wear the uniform that makes them comfortable.” What though if a certain student feels more comfortable not wearing any uniform at all? What’s to say that that also isn’t a valid option? They also call upon students to “Stand out” against discrimination based on gender. They proclaim that “Change is coming.” Now that their program has arrived at your school, apparently everyone will be safe! They also promote LGBTI-friendly activities in school, such as “Our school is celebrating IDAHOT” where IDAHOT stands for the International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia. They even suggest that students can celebrate IDAHOT by wearing rainbow colors to school, or by dressing up as a queer for a day. Furthermore, they advocate making your school safe by being more inclusive of gender diversity such as asking what pronouns students want to be called by (whether he, she, e, or ze). Students are also actively recruited by this program to promote the concept of gender fluidity through various means within the school community. For example, students are encouraged to put up posters with messages such as “It’s okay to be gay,” and to promote discussion about gender inclusivity by inserting equal marriage rights into school assignments, or by getting guest speakers who support LBGTI issues to address the school assembly.

The Safe Schools Coalition website also features prominently materials produced by Minus18, which claims to be “Australia’s largest youth-led organisation for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transexual youth.” A booklet created by Minus18 called OMG I’m Queer tells teenagers that “Sex is your physical aspects (ie your wibbly wobbly bits),” but “Gender … is how you feel in your mind” in terms of your sexuality. It goes on to say that what gender label a person uses to describe himself, herself, or zemself is totally “up to you.”

The overall message of the Safe Schools Coalition is: “Believe what you want, and be who you want to be. If you want to be a boy, then be a boy. If you want to be girl, then be a girl. If you want to be something else, then that is totally up to you, and everyone should respect your choice.”

The views of the Safe School Coalition are a great example of the idea of sexual freedom taken to the nth degree, but the amazing thing is that this is being taught in schools across Australia with government approval and support in the way of funding. Overall, the doctrine of gender fluidity is the latest example of political correctness that totally rejects biological and biblical norms. The wider community will definitely be hearing more about gender fluidity in the years to come, and Christians need to be aware of this growing sexual radicalism.