Brad Harrub, Ph.D.
Two weeks ago, box-store retailer Target announced a transgender bathroom policy that caused many concerned Americans to boycott the store. Husbands spoke out about privacy and safety concerns for their wives and children after Target announced individuals would be allowed in whatever bathroom they “identified” with. Over 1.2 million people have already signed the American Family Association’s petition to boycott the stores. Target’s dangerous decision is coming with a high price. According to Breitbart news the store has lost $4.5 billion in value since they instigated their new policy and sales continue to go down.
When I first reported on this story I pointed out the lunacy of this policy, given the small number of people who identify as transgender today. According to 2011 findings from the Williams Institute, the transgender population represents about 0.3% of American adults. To put this number in perspective consider that since the Social Security Administration started in 1936, only 135,367 people have changed their name to one of the opposite gender, and in those 80 years, only 30,006 changed their sex accordingly. (Bear in mind the population in America is currently sitting around 318 million.) If one calculates the number of Target shoppers and stores, then on average each store averages about 1.5 transgender people visiting each store per day! And yet, this retailer is making bathroom policies that threaten the safety of the overwhelming majority.
Logic reveals this is a dangerous policy and it makes sense to boycott an institution that elevates an ideology over the safety of women and young girls. After all, money is the one common language that everyone speaks.
Now enter the President of the United States—who has, in effect, decreed the same policy is now in effect for every public school bathroom in our nation. Acting on his own, the President sent out a letter to every public school (yes, even yours!) that was endorsed by the Department of Education and Department of Justice decrying that bathrooms be open to all, in order to prevent any type of “discrimination.” In other words, the President just advanced Target’s bathroom policy to every public school in the nation. According to the report in the Wall Street Journal, Public schools must permit transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their chosen gender identity, according to an Obama administration directive issued amid a court fight between the federal government and North Carolina.
The guidance from leaders at the departments of Education and Justice says public schools are obligated to treat transgender students in a way that matches their gender identity, even if their education records or identity documents indicate a different sex.
Have we lost all ability to reason? What happened to common sense? For that matter, what happened to the way in which we pass laws in our country? Furthermore, is the president more worried about his ideology than he is the welfare of young people?
Earlier this year the American College of Pediatricians went on record to call transgender ideology “child abuse.” The ACP warned educators and legislators that “a life of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex” is dangerous for children. In their strongly worded statement they continued by declaring, “a person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking.” It describes such thinking as problem that exists in the mind and not the body and “it should be treated as such.”
Add to this that suicide represents the third leading cause of death in young people—and yet researchers have shown suicide increases among transgenders who are using cross-sex hormones or undergo sexual reassignment surgery “twenty times greater” than the rest of the population. The American College of Pediatricians concluded, “Conditioning children into believing a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse.”
And yet, our president is threatening school systems if they don’t support this ideology and his new bathroom policy. This new decree—made in the late night hours without any input from Congress—is not law, but the President is making it clear that those who do not abide may lose federal funding.
If you honestly think this will be the last assault on decency and common-sense in our school systems think again. There is already a movement underway to get rid of pronouns like “he” and “she” in public schools because they are deemed discriminatory.
Our current society no longer wants little boys to be told they are boys. And we certainly don’t want our little girls to act like little girls. No, everyone has to be looked upon as “equal”—even though this is a biological fallacy and utterly ridiculous.
So one wonders, will Christians once again step up and boycott? Will Christian parents march to schools and demand they get rid of this dangerous policy? Will we continue to allow superintendents and principals to hide behind the excuse that their hands are tied? Will we collectively say we have had enough? While millions chose to boycott Target, I suspect many Christian parents will continue to send their children to public schools. After all, consider for a moment the sacrifice it would require to pull our children out. Boycotting schools would require parents look into some alternative like private schools, church schools, or home schools. (And let’s be honest, many Christian parents are unwilling to sacrifice things like sports, band, theater, and art in order to make a statement to the world that we will no longer support dangerous bathroom policies.)
Far too many Christians believe they can live certain parts of their lives “neutral” to the concept of God. Sure, we will keep God in a worship service, but during the week—at school or at work—we will put Him in a little box out of sight and remain neutral. After all, we don’t want to ruffle any feathers. Friends, the very act of trying to be neutral is antithetical to all that Jesus died for. When will Christians set aside their neutrality and truly make sacrifices for Him? When will we stand up and let the voice of God be heard across our nation?
When God called Abraham to leave his home country Abraham was not sure what the end result would be. He was a man who made a huge sacrifice to follow God (Genesis 12). Rather than offering up excuses Abraham did as God commanded. We saw this same attitude in Noah as he was preparing the ark (Genesis 6:22). Likewise, when Jesus came to this earth for mankind He sacrificed everything—all to reconcile man to God. The Bible is replete with people who made sacrifices—major sacrifices—in order to follow after God.
Fast forward to 2016, when the President of our country is espousing that biology has nothing to do with a person’s gender and that people ought to have the right to marry whoever they want or go to whatever bathroom they want. Some would argue that boycotting schools would not work. However, let me remind you that our children represent dollars to every school system. According to a June 29, 2015 study, America spends over $550 billion a year on public elementary and secondary education in the United States. On average, school districts spend $10,658 for each individual student. Imagine the impact that could be made if next fall 2-3 million young people did not show up for class.
The problem is many parents have comfortably donned a pair of blinders and they see no other option. They are unwilling to consider or do “the hard things.” Instead, they continue to complain about the problems of evolution, atheism, humanism, and Islam being taught in the classroom—only to continue to allow their children to be indoctrinated.
Logic reveals Target’s policy is dangerous and deserves to be boycotted. Logic also demands a similar approach be considered for public schools that adopt this dangerous policy that elevates an ideology over the safety of women and young girls. One wonders if this new bathroom policy will finally cause Christians to engage in the battle for the souls of their children and grandchildren? One wonders if we will find the courage to boycott this immoral decision. One wonders when we will start sacrificing? One wonders what it will take to turn our nation back?