Smile Politely

The UP Center responds to the News-Gazette’s Sunday op-ed

This past Sunday, the News-Gazette published a guest op-ed entitled “Let’s help confused kids make healthy life choices.” 

The piece, by Joe Gerber, frames transness as a disease, as in the following:

The truth of the matter is that child and family psychologists have done quite a bit of research on transgenderism in youths, and the results are troubling to say the least.

For starters, transgenderism can often be traced back to what psychiatrists call gender dysphoria (formerly known as gender identity disorder), which is the emotional stress caused by the failure to identify with one’s biological sex. While gender dysphoria is not considered a mental illness in the psychological literature, it is considered an objective condition of gender/sex misalignment.

Gerber goes on to argue for conversion therapy, claiming “The best option is to pursue clinically sound interventions and therapies that help children self-identify with their biological sex.”

Today, the UP Center of Champaign County responded to the N-G’s guest op-ed:

The Board of The UP Center of Champaign County is dismayed at the publication of a particularly concerning opinion piece in Sunday’s edition of the News-Gazette. The article in question, entitled “Let’s help confused kids make healthy life choices,” makes a disturbing call for the violent, pseudo-medical procedure colloquially known as “conversion therapy” to be enacted upon trans children. Conversion therapy is illegal in many states, including Illinois, and has no proven medical benefits—something that has been proven by a plethora of peer-reviewed studies. The American Psychiatric Association, The American Academy of Pediatrics, The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, The American Counseling Association, The American Medical Association, The American Psychological Association, and The National Association of Social Workers (among many others) have all stated that conversion therapy has devastating physical and psychological for youth, and can even result in the death of the individual forced to endure the “treatment”.

You can read the UP Center’s full statement here.

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