Back in December (just in time for the Christmas break), George Mason High School in Falls Church, Virginia held a school assembly with a special guest speaker. Washington Post columnist, author and Pulitzer Prize winner Amy Ellis Nutt arrived to lecture the children on a number of subjects, particularly transgender issues. That’s not surprising since she’s still pushing her 2015 book, Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family.
Cathy Ruse at The Daily Signal has a long, well developed breakdown of the speech given at the assembly as well as the question and answer session which followed. (Be warned in advance that some of this is extremely disturbing and Nutt is far off base on some of her “science.”)
Nutt’s lecture hit all the usual notes. Your gender is “assigned at birth” by people who might get it wrong. Toddlers can be transgender. Moray eels change sex and female reef fish produce sperm when there are no males.
“Gender is a spectrum,” everyone must get “comfortable” with new gender language that is “changing every day.” Asking a biological boy to use the teachers’ rather than the girls’ restroom is “bullying.”
Did the school make plain to the students that they could decline to attend? That’s not clear. In her presentation, Nutt quipped: “Thank you for coming, although I know you’re probably required to be here.”
Nor is it clear whether parents were fully informed about the assembly in advance. At least one shocked George Mason teacher, who remains anonymous, says parents were not.
If you want to invest the time you can watch the full presentation via YouTube.
We’ve done enough of these gender dysphoria stories by now, particularly when it involves the potential abuse of children, that we don’t need to go through it all again here. But Nutt adds a new layer to an already unbalanced cake when she begins veering off into various scientific fields. Nutt *covers* health and science for the Washington Post, but none of the bio blurbs I’ve found thus far indicate precisely what her educational background entails. One thing seems to be for sure, however… it probably wasn’t biology.
Handing out blatantly incorrect information like this to vulnerable children in a school setting where they’re ostensibly sent to learn and respect the authority figures instructing them isn’t just poor policy. It’s dangerous. Telling children that sex change is “perfectly normal” because moray eels and reef fish do it is a disingenuous, partisan mixture of science and fantasy. It’s true that a significant number of creatures are classified as sequential hermaphrodites (that’s the actual name for it, by the way), but they are found exclusively among fish, a few frogs and gastropods. In the absence of one gender in a given population, these creatures evolved to be able to switch from male to female (protandry) or from female to male (protogyny) in order to continue procreation. Some, like the clownfish, do it as a matter of course based on dominance in a breeding group.
But here’s the thing. This trait doesn’t exist in human beings. It doesn’t exist in the great apes or virtually any animal on the land. Calling that out as an example of something that’s “perfectly natural” for people is damaging, fake science. If Ms. Nutt wants to offer us an example of a single human being who demonstrates these tendencies in the real world I’ll be happy to take up the discussion anew.
I haven’t read Nutt’s book, Becoming Nicole, and only know it from reviews and reader descriptions, but it’s worse than the lecture. The family in question decided that a toddler was able to make a determination about being “born to the wrong gender” and went the full, medical route. The poor boy was given hormones to stop the natural onset of puberty and by the age of 17 he underwent irreversible surgery. This isn’t enlightenment or even “choice” in any form. It’s child abuse. The doctor they found to do this shouldn’t just lose their license. They need to be in jail and Nicole’s parents should be in the next cell. But people like Nutt are going around the country trying to normalize this behavior and they’re being allowed to do it in schools.
This is a big problem. If you’re an adult, do what you wish with your own body and live with the consequences as best you can. But when you begin abusing children in this fashion a line has been crossed and the authorities need to step in.