A reader recently alerted me to a piece in Slate (an online magazine) that is so bizarre you might think it is a joke, an April Fools’ Day parody, or someone illustrating absurdity by being absurd. Yet as far as I can tell, the author means every word she says.
I must say, I have never read anything stranger in my life (except perhaps for a couple of things in Mad Magazine, but they actually were parodies). If you dare to read the excerpt below, prepare for your brain to explode.
And yet nothing I have read is such a perfect example of the growing absurdity of the cultural radicals, who are increasingly losing touch with reality. So bizarre and “out there” is this article, that some of you will surely say, “Oh well, no one really takes this seriously; why give publicity to such fringe lunacy?” But if that is your view I would ask you to think again. Even a mere ten years ago most people did not think the notion of “gay marriage” would ever go anywhere. And yet what was thought by most as a fringe lunacy then is now celebrated by many and is the “law of the land” in a growing number of states.
Watch out! Things are getting dark very quickly. Make sure you have a strong stomach before you read what follows. And beware, it may be coming soon to a maternity ward near you. A piece such as this surely illustrates what St. Paul said of the unbelievers and sexually depraved of his day: they became vain in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened (Rom 1:21).
As usual the words of the author are in bold, black italics. My comments are in plain, red text. If you have a very strong stomach and a brain that does not easily explode you can read the full piece here: Slate Magazine article
Imagine you are in recovery from labor, lying in bed, holding your infant. In your arms you cradle a stunningly beautiful, perfect little being. [“Being”? “Baby” is the usual term is it not? Consider this your first warning, dear reader.] Completely innocent and totally vulnerable, your baby [That’s better.] is entirely dependent on you to make all the choices that will define their life for many years to come. [OK, here’s another sign of trouble. This woman has succumbed to fearing her own philosophy. Let me state for the record that it does not pertain to the human person to “define the life” of another person. That is what God does. This is a central error of the cultural radicals. They claim the right to “define life” and the lives of others. This woman is going to go on to describe her anxiety that parents can “define the life” of their child. Again, her fear is based on a flawed and prideful notion.]
Suddenly, the doctor comes in. He looks at you sternly [Oh, please!], gloved hands reaching for your baby … “Is it really necessary?” [you ask] … The doctor flashes a paternalistic [Oh, please!] smile. “No, no … but … This is a standard practice. People just wouldn’t understand why you didn’t go along with it,” he says, casting a judgmental [Oh, please!] glance.
[Look out, here it comes!]
… The imaginary [scenario] I described above is real. Obstetricians, doctors, and midwives [Well at least it’s not all stern, paternalistic, judgmental male doctors!] commit this procedure on infants every single day, in every single country … without even asking for the parents’ consent, making this practice all the more insidious. It’s called infant gender assignment: When the doctor holds your child up to the harsh light of the delivery room, looks between its legs, and declares his opinion: It’s a boy or a girl, based on nothing more than a cursory assessment of your offspring’s genitals. [It just gets stranger every day. Again, this piece is so insane that I was certain it had to be a joke. But it seems the “woman” (May I call “her” that without giving offense?) is quite serious.]
We tell our children, “You can be anything you want to be.” We say, “A girl can be a doctor, a boy can be a nurse,” but why in the first place must this person be a boy and that person be a girl? Your infant is an infant. [No, the sex of a baby in not incidental; it is integral; the infant IS male or IS female AND it is deeper than genitals, despite the author’s flippant reductionism. The “gender”—or as most of us used to say, “sex”—of a person goes all the way down to the DNA and, I would argue, to the soul, which is the form of the body.] … As a newborn, your child’s potential is limitless [No, it isn’t. Human beings are limited, contingent beings. We are not God. Here, too, the strange notions of the cultural radicals are on full display. The simple fact is that no matter how unpleasant some think it is, human beings ARE limited and thus our potential is also limited. No matter how much the author might wish to leap a tall building in a single bound or to be “genderless” (to use her term), she cannot. There are just some stubborn facts that get in the way of her pipe dream. Namely, that we are not of unlimited potential and we ARE either male or female.] The world is full of possibilities that every person deserves to be able to explore freely, receiving equal respect and human dignity while maximizing happiness through individual expression. [I wonder if our author would allow “offspring” to “explore freely” the owning of slaves, or the thrill of “maximizing happiness” through the “individual expression” of engaging in human trafficking, or leading a genocidal campaign in a foreign land. Just asking. But her vague and wide open notions here allow such a question. Surely she has some lines in mind that should not be crossed. But if she does, is she not limiting the “limitless potentials” she celebrates in every newborn?
With infant gender assignment, in a single moment your baby’s life is instantly and brutally [Oh, please!] reduced from such infinite [There’s that word again.] potentials down to one concrete set of expectations and stereotypes, and any behavioral deviation from that will be severely punished [Oh, please!] … That doctor (and the power structure behind him) plays a pivotal role in imposing those limits on helpless infants, without their consent, and without your informed consent as a parent. This issue deserves serious consideration by every parent, [No, it doesn’t.] because no matter what gender identity your child ultimately adopts, infant gender assignment has effects that will last through their whole life. [I would like to say that I think the author is seeking to limit my “infinite potential” by trying to coerce me into ignoring the obvious. She is “imposing” silliness on me and then (as the cultural radicals are more than capable of doing) threatening to “severely punish” any “behavioral deviation” by me against her (and their) politically correct agenda. In other words, doesn’t she want to break the very rules she announces? Does she not seek to impose an agenda on doctors and folks like me, who she says commit the crime of imposing an agenda on others?]
… Infant gender assignment might just be Russian roulette with your baby’s life. [Oh, for Heaven’s sake, such over the top rhetoric! But since she raised the issue of taking life, I would like to point out that the cultural radicals are the one who have the body count—in the hundreds of millions—through their advocacy and funding of abortion, which really DOES kill babies.]
For the sake of thy sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.