|Paul McHugh, the religious right's newest model of junk science.|
Those who read this blog know that I have kept a history of the many times anti-lgbt groups have relied on either junk or cherry-picked science to denigrate the lgbt community and refer to us as diseased "others" out to destroy American society.
Sometimes, other conservative entities aid in this bad endeavor. Today, it's the Wall Street Journal aiding the Family Research Council with its defense of "bathroom bills." The following is part of an email sent by FRC denigrating Obama because his recent directive to allow transgender students to use bathrooms in accordance to their desired gender identity and also because of the Justice Department's lawsuit against North Carolina for passing that awful HB2 law:
Obviously, the president is trying to move the ball as far down the field for his extreme agenda as he can before leaving office. But if he expected resistance, he certainly didn’t plan for it. “Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick has raised the possibility that his state may forfeit its $10 billion of annual federal funding for its schools,” the Wall Street Journal pointed out
“We hope Texas follows through and is joined by other states. There is more at stake here than sexual identity, not least the self-identity of the United States. The Obama administration’s preoccupation with sex, whether in sophomore year or the fourth grade, raises questions about whether the federal bureaucracies know at all what they are doing on anything resembling the merits… Two years ago on these pages we published ‘Transgender Surgery Isn’t the Solution’ by Johns Hopkins psychiatrist Paul McHugh. In one of the most widely-read pieces we have published, Dr. McHugh pointed out that the idea of gender as subjective ‘personal truth’ has no basis in science. What studies have been done on gender preference also suggest that the belief that these choices result in positive psychological outcomes isn’t proven -- especially for students in grade school. Suddenly, though, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch has solved the mysteries of gender confusion -- for the whole country.”
Paul McHugh is not a name known by many. Recently though, the religious right and other conservatives have been passing his anti-transgender information as accurate. Of course McHugh has credibility because he is affiliated with John Hops University. However, his information is still flawed because he is biased.
According to GLAAD (the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), McHugh has:
referred to homosexuality as "erroneous desire"
argued that being medically accomodating to a transgender child is "like performing liposuction on an anorexic child"
filed an amicus brief arguing in favor of Proposition 8 on the basis that homosexuality is a "choice."
describes post surgical trans women as "caricatures of women"
pushed the idea that the Catholic sex abuse scandal was not about pedophilia but about “homosexual predation on American Catholic youth.”
In addition, according to the blog Transadvocate:
It is important to remember that the opinions of Dr McHugh fly in the face of currently accepted medical practice and the positions of many major medical associations. The American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the American Psychiatric Society, the American Public Health Association, and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health have all adopted positions supporting the medical necessity of transition-related care, including hormonal and surgical interventions, as well as expressing support for insurance coverage of these interventions. Despite his authoritative sounding title at a respected medical institution, Dr McHugh’s opinions do not represent the views of the mainstream medical establishment, rather they are the erroneous, bigoted beliefs of a scientist who appears far too invested in his own antiquated, disproven theories and his anti-LGBT political position than the current state of medical affairs.
I tend to think that reasonable people would trust the word of several legitimate medical bodies over an obviously biased quack.
But then again, we are talking about the religious right.