This Op-Ed From The Hill Is Why Progressives Are Losing

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File

I have to give it to them. It seems every day progressives provide us with more examples demonstrating why they are losing. For the first time in recent memory, conservatives have begun gaining more ground in the culture war, and the left just doesn’t know what to do with it. But what is even more damning for these folks is the hard reality that they have not yet figured out why they are starting to lose. Author Arlene Stein, in an op-ed for The Hill, masterfully illustrates this lack of understanding when she writes about how horribly bigoted conservatives are for their stances on problematic material being taught in K-12 classrooms.

Stein begins her piece by referencing “anti-gender campaigns” taking place in Europe and Latin America and claims they are “sweeping across the United States.” She claims conservatives are “politicizing parenthood and enlisting parents in battles against so-called ‘woke’ teachers and medical professionals.”

Even worse, these wicked right-wingers are targeting “trans, non-binary and gender-expansive youth, as well as kids struggling with their sexuality.”

The author then asserts that social scientists have proven that “sex and gender may or may not correlate,” meaning that one’s gender identity can be “at odds” with the sex they were born as. She claims “[c]ritical theories of gender and sexuality are supported by decades of evidence.”

Stein then complains that conservatives accuse those supporting these theories are “indoctrinating children and eroding traditional family structures” and notes that they argue that “impressionable young people are being influenced by such ideas to undergo gender transitions.” She even repeats the deceptive line progressives have used against Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law and says conservatives believe “acknowledging the existence of gay and lesbian people in history ‘grooms’ them for homosexuality.”

As you can already see, Stein is mischaracterizing the position conservatives have taken on the gender issue. Yes, folks are concerned that children are being indoctrinated in classrooms and being “groomed” into accepting problematic ideas about sexual orientation and gender identity. But this is not because of “acknowledging” that gay and lesbian people existed in history. It is not even because of the notion that teachers are mentioning the fact that transgenders exist.

The issue is the fact that there are teachers, school staff members, and school counselors who are discussing – and even teaching – these ideas to small children without the knowledge of parents. Even further, school employees are counseling children who could be experiencing confusion or uncertainty over their gender or sexuality without informing parents. Indeed, California school districts received training from attorneys teaching them how to conceal these matters from parents. It is a fact that these individuals are influencing these young minds while working to keep parents out of the process. This is why some of these have earned the “groomer” label.

For the sake of discussion, I’ll pretend Stein’s assertions regarding the validity of social scientists’ argument that critical theories have been proven by “decades of evidence” is accurate. Even if true, it does not give educators and staff the right to instruct small children on matters without the knowledge and consent of the parents. There is a massive difference between simply mentioning a subject and actively teaching on it – a fact that Stein undoubtedly knows.

The author then seems to suggest conservatives are simply pushing back on these issues because they seek to position themselves as the saviors of children and “the family” to politicize the matter by weaponizing parenthood. “While the theme of protecting children is consistent over time, today the attacks focus much more squarely on the dangers of public education, especially K-12 schools,” she writes.

Later in the piece, Stein suggests that the right’s “real goal” is to protect the traditional family as the “cultural ideal” and to “sow distrust in schools and other public institutions.”

By framing the right’s position in this way, the author has, intentionally or unintentionally, lost the plot. Yes, while most Americans – regardless of political affiliation – believe the traditional family is the “cultural” ideal, this issue goes far beyond not trusting government institutions. In fact, she completely misses the reason why most of us don’t trust the government as blindly as people like herself. When you have leftist politicians and media figures wagging their fingers at us while saying parents should not have a say in how their children are educated, what else would you expect? When you use this silly argument as the pretext for infusing the curriculum with so-called progressive ideas without parents’ knowledge, why would you expect any level of trust?

It would be one thing if these individuals made the effort to inform parents about teaching related to sexuality and gender identity and get them involved in the process. Perhaps then Stein’s beloved government institutions would not be facing such a harsh backlash. Maybe if they made it easier for parents to opt their kids out of such lessons, people would not be so distrustful of public schools. But the fact that they have resorted to deception and subterfuge has bred this lack of trust.

It turns out that when you deliberately deceive people about their children, they won’t trust you.

Whoda thunk it?

Stein goes on to complain that conservatives are arguing against biological males competing with biological females in women’s sports.

“They argue that transgender athletes have an unfair advantage in girls’ and women’s sports, though they present no convincing evidence to that effect,” she writes, with a straight face. “They are seeking to restrict gender-affirmative medical care for young people on the grounds that the very notion of transgender children is a dangerous myth constructed by those who would seek to “convert” masculine-presenting cisgender girls.”

She also pretends that people “are trying to restrict speech that would acknowledge the different ways people express their sexual desires.”

Of course, the very idea that a biological man does not have physical advantages over biological women has been disproven time and time again. Even NBC News acknowledged this fact. The outlet reported on a study showing that even after a year of hormone treatment, transgender women still had a distinct physical advantage over biological women. In other words, water is wet. The idea that transgender women are the same as biological women is absurd on its face.

Moreover, her contention that conservatives are trying to ban speech related to sexuality and gender identity is another reference to Florida’s law. But as we already know, this is a brazen lie – and there is no way that Stein doesn’t know it. Nobody has a problem with people “expressing their sexual desires,” but maybe we shouldn’t encourage teachers “expressing their sexual desires” to children younger than seven-years-old, Arlene?

What is amazing is that Stein has no idea how ridiculous – and even dangerous – her arguments sound. To the average American, they sound like something that would come from another universe. The notion that instructing small kids on sexual orientation and gender identity should not be done is something on which almost everyone can agree. It is why even a majority of Democrats support the Florida bill.

Folks like Stein seem so perplexed by the fact they are losing with these asinine arguments. This just goes to show how trapped in their own echo chamber progressives have become. The question is: Will they ever learn?


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