By Bill Korach www.thereportcard.org
Former Governor Mike Huckabee writes to a former school teacher in response to her concern to the now trendy idea that humans can determine their own gender or are born with gay or transgender traits. Gov. Huckabee cites a recent report by 2 Johns Hopkins psychiatrists In a recent major study titled “Sexuality and Gender: Findings from the Biological, Psychological, and Social Sciences,” researchers from Johns Hopkins found that there is virtually no scientific evidence that people are born gay or transgender.
In response, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the most powerful lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer advocacy group in the country, labelled the report an “attack on LGBT communities” and threatened to penalize Johns Hopkins University if it does not distance itself from the study.
Here is a perfect example of agenda-driven politics by the LGBT community trying to denounce science. The HRC is playing the role of legendary King Canute who ordered the oceans to recede. There is no evidence that the ocean obeyed His Royal Highness. And the HRC offers no scientific evidence for their view other than they hate the report and want it suppressed.
Two highly-credentialed Johns Hopkins researchers, Paul McHugh and Lawrence Mayer, released a report arguing that there is no reliable scientific evidence supporting the currently fashionable claims that sexual orientation and gender dysphoria are caused by natural traits and innate behavior. In response, the director of LGBTI Research at Vanderbilt University released a letter signed by about 600 scholars, denouncing the report for not being published in a peer-reviewed journal and claiming that its “conclusions do not reflect current scientific or medical consensus about sexual orientation or gender identity…”
McHugh responded that it’s very hard to respond to the letter because it lists no specific objections, other than that the report, like many medical articles, wasn’t published in a peer-reviewed journal, and that they “just don’t like us” and want to “silence us.” He added, “I am disappointed that 600 people don’t like me. But I would like them to explain what exactly in that article we got wrong and where the information is that we should have put in. We are not against anybody. We are a group of doctors talking about the treatment of patients.”
I’m hardly an expert in gender research, but this letter does point up one of the growing problems with scientific research in general: There are several areas of science that have become tainted by politics, such as climate research and gender identity. It’s the very essence of the scientific method that the orthodoxy be challenged, but certain subjects are being declared off-limits to questioning. Citing the lack of publishing in peer-reviewed journals as a disqualifier is itself misleading, if the editors of those journals refuse to publish anything that questions the conventional wisdom, no matter how well-researched. Likewise, people who declare, “The science is settled,” are tacitly admitting they know nothing about science. “Settled science” is getting unsettled all the time, as we learn that things we once believed about everything from space to nutrition to fetal development were not accurate. Citing “consensus” also reveals an ignorance of the scientific method. Scientific facts aren’t determined by popular vote. If a million scientists believe something, and one dissenter is able to prove them wrong, then he’s right and the million others are wrong.
For the record, I’m not taking sides on this battle. For all I know, McHugh and Mayer may be wrong. But if you really have 600 qualified scientists who agree that they are wrong, then they should be able to explain why. Simply saying, “Look at how long this list of names that disagrees is!” is not a scientific refutation.
Once again Freedom of Speech is threatened by campus bullies who are trying to suppress any ideas they do not personally like.