Public Service Announcement to the Mama Bears
Defend Your Children
This week, the President of the United States sat down with a young gay manwho has risen to fame cosplaying as a girl. During more than 220 days of “being a girl,” Dylan Mulvaney has embodied and embraced an array of regressive stereotypes of femininity—proudly wearing ridiculous shoes, learning how to be catty, flouncing down a fashion runway. He even, famously, referred to the genitalia he does not have as a “barbie pocket.”
During his audience with the President, Mulvaney talked about “gender-affirming health care,” which includes puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgery. All of these medical interventions cause irreversible harm, being both invasive and dangerous, especially to children and adolescents. But in a short video from Biden’s sit-down with Mulvaney, Biden pronounces that he doesn’t think that “any state or anybody has the right” to ban gender-affirming health care. Of banning such interventions, the president says, “I just think it’s wrong.”
Meanwhile, an advisory committee assembled by the CDC voted unanimously to add the Covid vaccines to the childhood vaccination schedule.
It was just four months ago that the CDC began recommending Covid vaccines for children under five years old. CNN reported on this at the time, and quoted Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, who signed off on the decision: “Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation’s fight against COVID-19.” The conclusion is foregone, the evidence for that conclusion notably absent, the word “science” doing all the heavy lifting that actual science should be doing. In the same article, we heard from POTUS: “For parents all over the country, this is a day of relief and celebration.”
As it turns out, POTUS was delivering talking points that were well out of line with reality. Two months later, in August of 2022, an op-ed in the New York Times bemoaned the “abysmal Covid vaccination rate for toddlers,” noting that only 5% of young children who could now get Covid shots had received them. While the Times attributed this to “misinformation and disinformation about the safety and efficacy” of these shots, the fact is that children and adolescents are at low risk from Covid, and relatively high risk from the shots, and many parents seem to intuit this.
If we believe the mainstream media on these issues, though, it would seem that in order to be a good parent, you must affirm, and you must comply. Good parents affirm their child’s gender identity, and encourage medical intervention. And good parents comply with the CDC’s guidelines, and again, encourage medical intervention.
In both cases, the opposite is true.
All parents need to stand up and say no, but mothers in particular need to do so immediately.
Mothers are more likely than fathers to affirm and comply. This has to do, in part, with the well-known research finding in psychology that, on average, women are more likely than men to be “agreeable.” Agreeable is a term of art, but it means what you think it does: to be agreeable is to be “likeable, pleasant, and harmonious in relations with others”. Agreeableness, thus, can be used against a person, if they can be convinced that others will be disappointed in them if they don’t go along with the crowd.
It is also true that women are more likely than men to prioritize the active avoidance of harm—that is, preferring safety to excitement and possible danger. Gender ideology is actively harming children. So too are Covid vaccines. But ideologues are flipping the truth on its head, and using women’s tendency to avoid harm to get mothers to affirm and comply.
Parents are told that if they don’t affirm or comply, their child may die—from suicide, or from Covid. The message becomes personal and direct: You could have saved your child, but you didn’t. If the worst happens, how will you live with yourself?
See this for what it is: an attempt to scare you. They would convince you to embrace the very thing that is truly dangerous for your child, and convince you, too, that if you don’t, anything that happens to your child in the future is your fault.
Do not affirm. Do not comply. Your child’s health and welfare depend on it.
Mothers have a special bond with, and a particular ferocity around protecting, their children. Mothers, like everyone, can be conned into thinking that the very wrong thing that they are doing is the very right thing. But once they discover that they’ve been duped, that their children are being hurt? Mama bears need to spring into action to right the wrong.
Mama bears, do not hesitate because you are concerned that you have already caused harm. Do not wait because you are embarrassed, or ashamed. Do not fail to act because you are afraid of what your child will think of you, or say to you. Your child may well distance herself from you now if you go against her wishes, and that will be hard. Do not focus on that hardship.
Instead, consider your child in one year, in five years, in ten, and in twenty. Consider the conversation that you will have with your child then, if you fail to intervene now.
Mama bears, stand up for your children against that which would do them harm.
Halting puberty harms children.
Putting teenagers on cross-sex hormones harms them.
Embracing misogynistic, regressive sex stereotypes harms children.
Cutting off the healthy breasts of girls and young women harms them.
Injecting children and teenagers with experimental treatments that are particularly risky for young people, to protect them against a disease for which they are at very low risk, harms them.
Encouraging your children to wear masks at home, or outside, harms them.
Encouraging fear in your children, rather than curiosity, harms them. Demanding acquiescent safety behaviors to protect from all that you can see, while leaving the children exposed to myriad more dangers that you cannot, harms them.
Presenting a simple world in which you focus on a single parameter—gender, a virus—harms your children. It is a deceit. Your children will come to understand that. And then what? What will you say to them then? Do right by them now.
What do you want for your children? Do you want them to be insightful and merciful, capable of generating wisdom, and kind to all who merit kindness? Do you want them to be curious and capable, generative and generous? I do. I want these things for my children, and I want them for all children.
Mama bears, do not put your own standing in your social tribe above your rights and responsibilities as a parent. If your gut tells you that you are going along with something because it is uncomfortable to object, pay attention to your gut. Maybe your gut is wrong. But maybe it’s not. In some cases, you may decide that you want to follow the authorities’ advice, but do so having thought about what you are doing. Do so with an open mind. Your open mind may reveal to you how wrong the authorities can be, which will in turn allow you to protect your children from harms.
Be a mama bear. Be ferocious in protection of your children, and then, ferocious in protection of all children. Act out of love for your child, not fear of what will happen if you don’t follow the fashion, or the authorities. Do not affirm that which is dangerous. Do not comply with that which is dangerous. Do not let your agreeable nature put your own children in harm’s way.
Nobody argues that “gender affirmation” surgeries are reversible, nor even that cross-sex hormones are—many of the anatomical and physiological changes that they induce are permanent, while not being capable of actually turning someone into a different sex. On the topic of puberty blockers, there is less known—here is the excellent Dr. Hillary Cass pointing out that there is scant research to discover if they are safe. Despite the lack of published research, I am certain that, given trade-offs and evolutionary history, blocking puberty is neither safe, nor fully reversible.
Biden’s statement is remarkable not just for the content, but for the simple clarity of it. Among the many metaphorical naked emperors running around these days, one of them is the pretense that the U.S. has a Commander-in-Chief who has command of his own brain. Listen to Biden in the linked video. How much clarity does he bring? When he was on the ticket with Obama, I voted for him. I never much liked him, but he was at least lucid then. “Lucid” seems like a really low bar for POTUS to meet, and yet it’s a bar that is not currently being met.
What happens next is this: “Fact-checkers” will say that the CDC didn’t authorize or mandate anything, because of course the CDC can’t authorize or mandate things, and this fact will be used to suggest that anyone concerned about the committee’s vote is over-reacting (and/or: an anti-vaxxer, a conspiracy theorist, and a member of the alt-right). But the CDC does make de facto policy, as we saw over and over again during Covid. States, overburdened as they are, tend to follow the recommendations of the CDC, because hey, there’s a governmental agency making supposedly informed decisions that the states would have to have very good reason not to follow. The CDC’s recommendation establishes a default position away from which it is difficult to move without considerable repercussions.
Covid is riskier the older you are. This should be old news to everyone by now, but here are a couple of sources: 1. The Economist’s interactive risk estimator. 2. O’Driscoll et al 2021. Age-specific mortality and immunity patterns of SARS-CoV-2. Nature, 590(7844): 140-145 (primary research paper).
Dr. Peter McCollough has a short piece on cardiovascular risks from the Covid vaccines here; and his fifth reference (Gill et al 2022. Autopsy histopathologic cardiac findings in 2 adolescents following the second COVID-19 vaccine dose. Archives of pathology & laboratory medicine, 146(8): 925-929) links to several more peer-reviewed articles which assess risk specifically to young people.
See, e.g., Graziano & Tobin. 2009. Agreeableness. In M. R. Leary & R. H. Hoyle (Eds.), Handbook of individual differences in social behavior (pp. 46–61). The Guilford Press.
See table 10.1 in Moffitt et al 2001. Sex Differences in Antisocial Behavior: Conduct Disorder, Delinquency, and Violence in the Dunedin Longitudinal Study. Cambridge University Press.
It is hard to escape the conclusion that there are powerful players in society that want to bring 3,000 years of western history to an end. And yet, we never hear a clear explanation of what they want to replace it with. Do they actually want to replace anything, or do they wish to socially, spiritually and financially impoverish those with less to increase the relative prosperity of those that already have more?
Naturopaths who have been recommending natural hormones to menopausal women know that once they start down the path of supplementation using progesterone, testosterone, or estrogen the body will shut down producing what is left of it's own hormones.
Not saying I know that this will happen to youth, but it is a possibility that should not be ignored until more is known.
Hormones are more important than most people recognize and people should not mess with them until they know all the risks.