Tuesday, May 21

Where Are the Activists Standing Up for Gay Children?

Less than three years ago, over 100,000 submissions opposing gay conversion practices were sent to the Justice committee, the highest number of public submissions ever received on a piece of legislation in New Zealand.

In April the highly regarded Cass review into gender identity services in the United Kingdom, stated that many young gender-questioning children, if left alone, would turn out to be gay. Medicalisation is not only not required but can actively damage the gay child. In fact, in practice medicalisation is a form of gay conversion therapy – transing the gay away.

So where are all the voices protesting against this state-sanctioned conversion treatment for gay children? Most especially, where are the gay voices?

So far, apart from a few brave gay women and the occasional gay man, there has been a deafening silence. Nothing like the thousands of submitters so eager to protect gay people from conversion practices.

It’s a question I put to American free speech advocate and gay rights campaigner, Jonathan Rauch visiting New Zealand as a guest of the Free Speech Union. If he is so keen on free speech and gay rights, why is he not defending gay children and speaking out against this ideology? Why aren’t other gay campaigners?

He says in the United States gay people have been concerned that any protest against gender ideology would be used as a lever by the anti-gay conservative lobby to strip them of hard-won rights such as gay marriage etc.

But he has long been aware of the dangers. In an article in 2022 he warned that transgender people themselves were being harmed by this ideology and argued that trans civil rights needed to be decoupled from radical gender ideology. Only moderate trans people could take back the movement. “I can say from experience that once they do, they will win, and so will the country,” wrote Rauch.

On the plus side, he believes that a stronger response from the gay rights movement supporting gay children may be imminent – and he stresses the word ‘may.’ Hardly a ringing endorsement of either free speech or the courage of the gay community.

Here, the situation is similar. It appears that virtually all rainbow organisations have been taken over and silenced by the T brigade. So even when direct harm is being done to gay children, few dare defend these vulnerable young people. Gay women are among those who have tried, especially second-wave feminists, and a few gay men have joined the fray.

When questioned a politically engaged gay male friend said he risked losing his employment if he spoke out but he did confess the issue kept him awake at night.

“The only hope I can offer is how many individuals who will surprisingly admit, very quietly, that they have doubts, but no one can speak up without becoming a pariah.”

Another gay male said he’s noticed an uptick in homophobic slurs on social media. “For the first time in 20 years, I have felt nervous letting on I’m gay. This ideology is poisoning people against anything rainbow. People are confusing us with the anti-reality, quasi-Marxist queer crowd.”

Again, so much for free speech. And gay activism. Perhaps the only wins these activists are prepared to fight for are the easy ones, the kind that can be cheered in parliament with hugs all round and the waving of a rainbow flag.

Issues as thorny and political as challenging gender ideology are ignored. Meanwhile gay children continue to be put on the cruel conveyor belt of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, all in the name of gender affirmation and imagined tolerance.

Just as an aside, under the Conversion Practices Prohibition legislation that so many submitters supported, it is an offence to perform conversion practices on anyone under 18 and may result in up to three years imprisonment. It is also an offence to perform conversion practices on anyone – irrespective of age – where the practices have caused serious harm and may result in 5 years imprisonment.

Given that we now know many of these gender confused children are gay, one would hope that the law could be interpreted to include the medicalisation of these people – but given that conversion practices include gender I doubt it somehow…