Just to recap:
Dozens upon dozens of studies, conducted over a half century, fail to uncover any evidence that, over time, removing sex organs and prescribing cross-sex hormones cures the distress of those struggling with sexual identity. Even worse, these fake cures cause harm.
They harm by increasing the risk of lethal disease. They harm by inflicting major, irreversible damage and disfigurement on bodies—including the permanent destruction of fertility—under false pretenses. They harm by falsely raising ailing people's hopes, consigning them to life-crushing disappointment a few years down the road. They harm by amounting to a financial scam which cynically preys on their vulnerability and longing (surgeries can now cost upwards of $100,000 in the United States).
And they harm by pushing the ailing away from what actually would help them—compassionate, expert therapy; experienced guidance toward new sources of purpose, meaning, and self-acceptance; a strong, rich, supportive tapestry of social connection, etc.—and toward a radically invasive surgery which will not solve the actual problem.
Yet, despite everyone in the medical science establishment knowing all this (or having the ability to know it after a ten minute internet search of their own discipline's research journals)...
...they all keep pushing the same radical, harmful, fake cure anyway.
The truth—made plain, as I have shown in previous pieces, by many dozens of scientific studies—clearly doesn't matter to them. Other motives altogether are driving their behavior.
This sort of thing isn't new. Behind every manifestation of pernicious Wokist lunacy now lies an ancestral line of events and figures.
That brings me to the man I alluded to last week. It is possible that without him, the institutionalized medical malpractice I have described above, along with the whole cosmos of false claims which fueled it and continues to fuel it, and which is now Wokist orthodoxy, might not exist. And the funny thing is, almost no one reading this has ever heard of him.
If you had to pick the Anglosphere's "middle of nowhere" one hundred years ago this month, you could do worse than to pick Morrinsville, New Zealand, population somewhere around a thousand (no one seems to have bothered counting). A few sheep farmers, a few merchants, some local Maori folks, and that was about it. "Making it big in the world" meant you made it to the town of Hamilton (population: 15,000) eighteen miles away. Auckland wasn't much bigger.
It was in that small "middle of nowhere" town, July of 1921, that John Money was born. Frail and thin growing up, Money found himself helpless against the teasing of local boys. As anger hardened within him against his occasional tormentors, he concluded they were all his intellectual inferiors. In his mind, he was smarter—that is, better—than all of them. It was an attitude which never left him. Money spent most of the rest of his childhood avoiding other boys, and playing with his female cousin in her play shed.
When Money was eight, his father passed away. His uncle commented that Money was now "man of the house". This comment, Money later would say, "had a great impact on me": it repelled him. Aside from a short, childless marriage later on, Money would spend the rest of his life aggressively avoiding any role remotely close to being "the man of the house". As for the rest of his youth, it was his widowed mother and spinster aunts who raised him. Aside from his female cousin, he had no friends.
Money dreamed of becoming a professional musician. Alas, hundreds of hours spent practicing piano only revealed to him that "irrespective of effort" (his words), he would never achieve that goal. It just wasn't in him.
Devastated, Money enrolled in Victoria University (Wellington), only to discover a new passion altogether: psychology. The initial attraction came from his desire to understand why he couldn't master music. He even wrote his master's thesis on the topic. But soon enough, another attraction took over: the study of human sexuality.
It was around this time that Money decided the Christianity he'd been raised in was a ridiculous fraud. There was no sign of any God, he now concluded. Science was the pathway to knowledge and freedom—not prayer, tradition, scripture, or obedience to 5000 year old commandments. What exactly was a "commandment"? His answer was: nothing other than a man-made fabrication. In reality, there were no divine commandments. There was no divinity at all. There were only the accidental products of undirected evolution—like human beings, which were really only warm machines—making things up as they go, trapped on a floating rock in an otherwise meaningless universe.
Enthused by his new views, eager to experience the enlightenment promised by science, Money decided to travel to the United States for PhD studies. In 1951, he emerged a newly-minted doctor of psychology from Harvard.
His special interest in unusual expressions of sexual identity, like hermaphroditism, led Johns Hopkins University to offer him a position directly after graduation. The failed musician from the middle of nowhere, who, only a few years earlier, could see no prospects for advancement in the world, was now a professor of pediatrics and medical psychology, working out of a brand new research clinic at one of the top universities on earth. Here, he could indeed show his smarts to the world. Here, he could attract fame, applause, admiration, and acolytes. Here, he could share—even impose—his ideas about science, about the world, about human beings, about human sexuality and the whole variety of sex act possibilities, on millions. Here, he could strike a huge, retroactive blow against the "tightly sealed, evangelical religious dogma" (his words) he had been raised to believe. Here, he could show all his dunce, boyhood tormentors back in rural New Zealand who the real star was. It was a fairytale come true.
At least, it was for Money. For others—like his future patients; like the patients of all the other professors who followed his lead, like the ethically-unmoored sheep they are, for the next four decades; like hundreds of millions of people throughout the West—it was a nightmare.
More on that next time.
Tal will be back here next week to continue the conversation. Mark Steyn Club members can weigh in on this column in the comment section below, one of many perks of club membership, which you can check out here.