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The Student News Site of Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy


The Student News Site of Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy


The Student News Site of Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy


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Texas Court Case Causes Uproars in the Conservative Community while the Left Stands Idle. Where is the Middle ground?


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Slider Image from Flickr.

In October of 2019, the long fought custody battle in Texas between Jeffery Younger and Anna Georgulas for their 7-year old, James Younger, has still not concluded. James came out as transgender a few years ago, so while Georgulas refers to her child as ‘Luna’ with objectively female pronouns, Jeffery Younger does not consent to referring to his child with opposite sex pronouns, nor does he consent his child receiving hormonal therapy. As of today, the result of the court case that is still pending is that Georgulas remains the ‘Sole Managing Conservatorship,’ according to Life Site News. This grants her authority over psychological and psychiatric care for James/Luna and their twin brother, Jude Younger. If Georgulas were to make a decision such as medically transitioning James/Luna with hormone therapy, Jeffery Younger would have no say in the matter.

The flag for the transgender community. The two blue stripes represent the traditional color for boys, the two pink stripes represent the traditional color for girls, and the white stripe is for those who are transitioning. Image from Wikipedia.

The reason why this court case has caused such a controversy is because there is no middle ground. Opinions are so far from being independent that there seems to be no choice other than sticking with one side, but how do we know which one is more objectively ethical? 

Well known spokesman of the conservative community, Ben Shapiro, reacted to the court case in late and posted a YouTube video about it on The Daily Wire. His first topic of discussion concerns a clip of a video posted by Jeffery Younger where Jeffery asks his child James/Luna whether they are a girl or not at 3-years old.  Jeffery asks them, “Who told you you’re a girl?” “Mommy,” James/Luna replies. From this conversation alone, Shapiro goes as far as saying that it is child abuse to explicity invoke gender disphoria in a child. According to his sources, Georgulas does not intend to supplement James/Luna with hormone blockers yet, but nothing is stopping her from beginning this procedure once puberty begins. What Shapiro also disapproves of is she is allowed to “continue to indoctrinate her child to believe that he is, in fact, a little girl, when by all biological metrics, he is not a little girl.” 

Another openly conservative opinion comes from Steven Crowder, the host of a conservative talk show Louder With Crowder. The overall idea he incorporates in his rationalization of restricting Georgulas’ sole conservatorship comes from a statistic he presents in a video on YouTube. According to the National Center for Biotechnology, a small percentage of children diagnosed with gender dysphoria carry out with their transition into adulthood. Crowder takes the statistic and summarizes it to be that “75-90 percent of them with gender dysphoria completely grow out of it.” He adds that 100 percent of children who are medically prescribed hormone suppressors stay transgender. One last statistic he mentions is the fact that transgenders are 19 percent more likely to commit suicide and have increased mortality rates. What Crowder connects from these statistics and the James/Luna Younger case is that “if you don’t want that child to die, you don’t give him hormone blockers.” 

From these two sources we can determine that the general belief of major conservative figures is that there is disbelief as to whether James/Luna truly desires to transition or if it is just a product of his mother’s influence. At this age, can James/Luna confidently consent to potentially taking hormone blockers or to a sex change? After all, according to an interview with Jeffery Younger himself with the Pluralist, he admitted that his child acts as a boy with him, but as a girl with Georgulas. Does this imply that James/Luna is trying to please his parents as most children wish to, or are they afraid of their father’s disapproval? 

Dr. Michelle Forcier, a professor at the Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University, has a different approach to this dilemma according to an article posted by The New York Times. As someone who specializes in gender-diverse patients, she believes that the ultimate contribution a parent must make for their child is simply “listen to your kid.” Forcier continues saying that medical procedures are by no means necessary, but since “transgender youths are more likely than their cisgender peers to struggle with mental illness,” referring to the child with preferred names or pronouns is an immediate help. 

Shanna Haun, a mother of a transgender child has a vocal stance on the issue. As for correct use of pronouns, Haun believes that this is a legal human right that the majority of cisgender people take for granted. What those people take for granted is the fact that they do not have to worry about being misidentified or correct people who mispronounce their name. She imagines that it would be “heartbreaking and painful” to be born in a body that didn’t feel like her own, “to have the world see me as someone totally different than how I see myself.” 

Shanna Haun describes the struggle for transgender individuals as they “have to worry about being misidentified or correct people who mispronounce their name.” Photo from Wikimedia.

As a mother of a transgender child, Haun was “extremely nervous” because they did not know what to expect with their child’s declaration of being transgender. Their child’s transition went smoothly, and they were “grateful” that the “overall experience was one of support and love.” The only problem was that legal rights for transgenders are not completely recognized in some states, causing their move to Colo. from Kan. 

“When it comes to housing, healthcare and employment and other issues, our daughter’s legal rights are not guaranteed,” Haun says. She further supports this fact with an article from lgbtmap.org that shows a map that labels each state with the level of positive or negative transgender policy support. 

Haun ends saying that there should not be anything controversial about this ‘controversy’. “The premise that there are two sides to this ‘issue’ is what is totally offensive to me.” Her most valued principle is to let people live the way they want despite what others may think since that person is not harming anyone else by doing so. 

In reality, there is no solution to the debate. What can we really determine from a 7-year old’s speech? Where do we draw the line for when a child is without a doubt telling what they know they want and when they are just being a kid? On one hand, one can say that they are too young to decide such an impactful change, but on the other hand, we cannot reject how James/Luna allegedly presents themselves in court because that may actually be how they want to be presented. 


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