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Vol. 16, No. 5, 2017
 
     
 
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Robert J. Lewis
 
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the new prerogative
CHOOSING GENDER


by
ROBERT J. LEWIS

___________________________________

Gender gender on the wall,
Who's the most of both of all?
Bambi and the Cry Babies

 

Is the male-female binary fixed for all time, and everything that falls outside that time-tested template aberrational? Or is there an existential case to be made that gender isn’t strictly a hormonal imperative, that it is also psychical, that one can override or choose one’s gender?

Plucked her eyebrows on the way
Shaved her legs and then he was a she
She said, hey babe, take a walk on the wild side
Lou Reed

Never before in the history of the species has that question been so passionately debated, in part consequent to the revolution in communication technology that facilitates minority issues and causes going global in a matter of hours or days. There once was a time when gays and transgenders, especially in remote and/or homophobic areas and cultures, quietly suffered their condition. Today, thanks to the Internet and social networking, androphiliacs, gynephiliacs and cisgendered now have a voice and the world is listening – and every vote counts.

Abetting, especially since the turn of the century, the notion of gender fluidity are ground breaking medical advances in sexual reassignment surgery, to the effect that more and more especially males are stepping out and announcing that they do not feel comfortable in their assigned gender.

In Sexual Relativity and Gender Revolution,” Nick Catalano reports that 33% of heterosexuals and homosexuals identify themselves as somewhere in between, numbers that would have been unthinkable 50,000 years ago when men were living in caves. The Independent reports the number of children suffering from gender identity disorder (gender dysphoria) has increased tenfold in the past six years.

While the new data is disturbing to some, it opens up a line of inquiry that directly implicates our fundamental values as it concerns human sexuality. Have we come to a critical crossroads (crossing over) in the evolution of the sexuality of the species?

“If you want to be a drag queen and your parents don’t let you, you need new parents,” says eight-year-old drag queen contestant Lactatia.

Why are more and more men unhappy with their sexual dispensation? And is there a relationship between this unhappiness and the disproportionately high suicide rates among men compared to women? And finally, how do demographics play into this confluence of issues, noting that most demographers side with the view that current world population growth rates are unsustainable.

 

GENDER FLUIDITY – FACTS AND FRICTIONS

We know that “The likelihood of being gay increases by about 33 percent with each additional older brother. From these statistics, researchers calculate that about 15 to 30 percent of gay men have the fraternal birth order effect to thank for their homosexuality.”

Depending on the country, the suicide rate among both young and middle aged males is between 3 to 7 % higher than women. According to the HNCS (National Center for Health Statistics), young males are 5-times more likely than young women to commit suicide.

How do we account for the divergence? Since the onus of sexual performance falls to the man, men are disproportionately more vulnerable to and adversely affected by performance anxiety (PA). PA is further exacerbated by the Internet and the ubiquity of explicit sex that imposes unrealistic standards and expectations that especially the young are not equipped to deal with. There is considerable anecdotal evidence (based on rape and sexual assault statistics) that more and more men are transferring their sexual frustration into resentment against women who, to the everlasting vexation of men, are constitutionally more sexually capable. On this delicate matter, the science is unequivocal. The clitoris is appreciably more sensitive than the penis, women are multi-orgasmic, the intensity of the female orgasm doesn’t diminish with age, and most importantly women can do it all day long and men cannot. Throughout history, men have never forgiven women for their sexual advantage and have exacted terrible revenge: from the deforming foot-binding culture in China, to the Islamic practice of FGM (female genital mutilation), to witch burning in Europe.

Thanks to the Internet, what the 19th century Russian novelist Dostoevsky feared most is now the distinguishing feature of our age: “everything is permitted.” By the time kids reach puberty (as early as ten in some cases), most of them have witnessed every kind and manner of sexual congress imaginable. To pretend that an 11-year-old, tucked under the sheets with his smartphone -- observing consenting adults engaging in marathon coupling sessions in every possible position and combination -- hasn’t been profoundly affected if not altered by what he has seen is not only naïve but irresponsible: especially in respect to man’s dark side of the moon sexual propensities that might include incest, misogynist sex, S & M, pedophilia and bestiality. We know that early sexual experiences very often predict adult sexual behaviour. Depending on the study, between 30% to 50% percent of sexually abused children become abuser adults.

Completely absent from Internet sex is the vital emotional component, or precisely that which makes us human. The young -- lacking the cognitive maturity to protect themselves against the first effect of porn’s meticulously edited final product -- quite naturally come to have totally unrealistic notions of what constitutes normal healthy sex.

By the time they hit their mid-teens, many regard sex less as a pleasure and more of a duty to be performed, a disturbing if not distressing state of affairs luminously revealed in the film It Felt Like Love, where you have 15-year-old girls measuring their worth by the number of guys they have blown, while the males, mimicking the icy disengagement of their porn role models, have artfully normalized the simple unzip to mask their fear of cultivating real relationships where all sorts of things can go wrong.

But as the numbers suggest, young males, afraid or unable to measure up, are surfacing as sexually damaged or disabled adults looking for a quick fix (a new face, a new body). Recent studies suggest that there is a direct cause and effect relationship between performance anxiety, the high suicide rate among males and the nascent transgender revolution.

According to a McGill University report, 13% of the student body had admitted to thoughts of suicide and 57% sought mental health counseling services. A Dutch study determined that males are 3-times more likely to opt for transgendering than women.

What is now becoming clear, despite those who insist the male-female binary is a strictly genetic construct, is that men and women who can afford the new wardrobe and costly medical bills can opt out of their assigned gender, or overrule their orientation. Twenty five to 50% of abused heterosexual women turn to lesbianism; in prison heterosexuals frequently practice homosexuality, and in the population at large, more and more males are identifying as gender fluid.

Fifty thousand years ago, when the earth was sparsely populated, there would have been, as a percentage of the population, fewer homosexuals than today, and the concept of gender fluidity would not have existed. But today, in the face of numbers that are unsustainable, man has shown himself indictably incapable of regulating population growth, and the task, the clean-up job, by default, has devolved to nature, already on the job. Homosexuality along with gender abdication are two of nature’s early triumphs, or from the demographer’s perspective, they represent the human equivalent of the lemming suicide response to over-population.

As it directly concerns the growing human threat to the health of the planet, we can expect a major increase in both homosexual and transgender populations. And beyond that, with major advances in gene sequencing and reproductive technology, there may come a time when procreation and conventional sex will be delinked, especially since we are a species soft-wired to take the path of least resistance.

If, with the blessings of nature, stress-triggered homosexuality, transgendering and suicide are the messy means to the desirable end of curbing over-population, the skeptic will quite naturally point to rampant population growth in India and Indonesia, where there is no apparent increase as a percentage of the population among the above mentioned groups. In these places, why hasn’t stress had a negative impact on breeding outcomes? The short answer is religion, which acts like a firewall against all sorts of what would otherwise be stress inducing (birthrate unfriendly) outcomes. Religion relieves men and women of the responsibility of courtship and marriage, and provides for certainties (status, class, afterlife) absent in secular societies. However, where Islam and Hinduism have been destabilized by secularism, there has been a concomitant increase in both homosexual and transgender populations, and lower birthrates. Hindus living in the secular West (1.3 births/couple) enjoy significantly lower rates (2.4) than their counterparts in India. The birthrate among religious Hassidic Jews is 4.1 while among the general Jewish population it is 1.5. So if religion is abetting over population, and custom and culture are unable to reign in the growth, nature, in its own fashion, will step up to the plate.

To the many who at a gut level are affronted by homosexuality and transgenderism, you are urged to learn to think outside the box in which you are comfortably (self-righteously) ensconced, pointing an accusing finger at those very minority groups that are working and suffering on your behalf. In the war against unsustainable population growth, homosexuality and gender fluidity should be encouraged and subsidized at the highest levels of government. In both India and China, where female infanticide (selective abortion syndrome) is practiced, there is now a predominance of men over women, which might not be unrelated to what some have characterized as an epidemic in sexual assault and rape.

For every increase in the homosexual and transgender populations, a favour, a blessing has been bestowed upon the world bursting at the numbers. And what is required of us all, with a nod to nature and Lamarck, is not our wrath and censure, but our infinite gratitude, if not from the heart then from the head.

In the absence of Divine Intervention, we now look to the non-breeders of the world to lead us out of the wilderness of our folly and failure to a new world order, where there is no disparity between knowing and doing what we know is right for the planet.

I call upon non-breeders of the world to multiply and unite, and save the billions of us from our miserable plight.

 

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also by Robert J. Lewis:
Broken Feather's Last Stand

Abstract Art or Artifice II
Old People
Beware the Cherry-Picker
Once Were Animal
Islam is Smarter Than the West
Islam Divided by Two
Pedophiling Innocence
Grappling with Revenge
Hit Me With That Music
The Sinking of the Friendship
Om: The Great Escape
Actor on a Hot Tin Roof
Being & Self-Consciousness
Giacometti: A Line in the Wilderness
The Jazz Solo
Chat Rooms & Infidels
Music Fatigue
Understanding Rape
Have Idea Will Travel
Bikini Jihad
The Reader Feedback Manifesto
Caste the First Stone
Let's Get Cultured
Being & Baggage
Robert Mapplethorpe
1-800-Philosophy
The Eclectic Switch

Philosophical Time
What is Beauty?
In Defense of Heidegger

Hijackers, Hookers and Paradise Now
Death Wish 7 Billion
My Gypsy Wife Tonight
On the Origins of Love & Hate
Divine Right and the Unrevolted Masses
Cycle Hype or Genotype
The Genocide Gene

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Arts & Opinion, a bi-monthly, is archived in the Library and Archives Canada.
ISSN 1718-2034

 

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