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Thorner: When Feelings Replace Scientific Facts



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Transgenders are reading to children in public libraries these days – with the purpose of making their controversial lifestyles less shocking and more mainstream. Transgenders are the "T" in LGBT efforts to demand rights to dress as they choose in the workplace with no questions asked, to use public washrooms of the sex of their choice, and to call on taxpayers to pay for hormonal drugs and surgeries to switch sexes. The headlines concerning trans demands are numerous – and growing more and more prominent each day.

Transgenderism was the topic of the Fifth Annual Worldview Conference for Biblical Training for Today's Culture Saturday, March 16, 2019 at Stone Church, Orland Park, IL. It was sponsored by the Illinois Family Institute.  David E. Smith has served as the organization's executive director since August 2006. The event attracted 250 individuals from a wide geographical area, 20 of whom were deaf traveling from Northern IL and Wisconsin, for whom sign language was provided.

This year's topic, "trans" ideology, featured these four special guests:  

  • Session 1: Walter Heyer – Transgenderism: The Consequences  
  • Session 2: Dr. Michael Cretella – Child Abuse, Female Erasure & the Death of ALL Human rights
  • Session 3: Denise Shick – Her story: The Impact on Family
  • Session 4: Pastor Doug Wilson – Sanity as Insurrection

Session 1: Walt Heller

Walt Heller was a husband, father and successful corporate executive (not a homosexual) who underwent gender reassignment surgery at the age of 41, going from man to woman.  Eight years later Walt went back to man again. Walt has been restored to his male gender for over 25 years and married for over 20.  Walt, as an accomplished writer of 6 books and a conference speaker, writes for the federalist.com and the publicdiscourse.com. Much insight can be gained at Walt's own website, Sex Change Regret.

Books by Walt Heller include Trans Life Survivors; Kid Dakota and the Secret at Grandma's House; Paper Genders; Gender Lies and Suicide; and Walt's autobiography, A Transgender's Faith.  Walt's books can be purchased at https://www.thriftbooks.com/a/walt-heyer/715381/.

As to the beginning of the transgenderism movement in the U.S., as related by Walt Heller in his Federalist article dated May 16, 2018, Why A Compromise On Transgender Politics Would Be Capitulation?  

“In the United States, transgenderism began more than 60 years ago in the sick, twisted minds of three men, as I detail in my book “Paper Genders”: Alfred Kinsey, a pedophile activist who was addicted to masturbation; Dr. Harry Benjamin, a pedophile activist, who coined the term ‘transsexual’ and was obsessed with cross-gender hormone therapy and sex change surgery; and John Money, a pedophile activist who fabricated his transgender research results.”

Walt Heller, now 79, in an MailOnline interview back in January of 2015, said he should never have been allowed to have the sex change in the first place. He claims hundreds of others are making the same mistake because surgeons are not properly evaluating their motives to change gender.  His decision started with a purple chiffon dress.

Here is Walt's story, I Was a Transgender Woman, as told by Walt Heyer on April 1, 2015. Included below is just s teaser. You will undoubted wish to read Walt's entire account about his life as a trans-kid, his life as a woman, and finally his return to Walt, the man.

"It wasn’t my mother but my grandmother who clothed me in a purple chiffon dress she made for me. That dress set in motion a life filled with gender dysphoria, sexual abuse, alcohol and drug abuse, and finally, an unnecessary gender reassignment surgery. My life was ripped apart by a trusted adult who enjoyed dressing me as a girl.

My mom and dad didn’t have any idea that when they dropped their son off for a weekend at Grandma’s that she was dressing their boy in girls’ clothes. Grandma told me it was our little secret. My grandmother withheld affirmations of me as a boy, but she lavished delighted praise upon me when I was dressed as a girl. Feelings of euphoria swept over me with her praise, followed later by depression and insecurity about being a boy. Her actions planted the idea in me that I was born in the wrong body. She nourished and encouraged the idea, and over time it took on a life of its own."  

Screen Shot 2019-03-20 at 1.56.06 PMSession 2:  Dr. Michelle A. Cretella, MD, FCP

Dr. Michelle A. Cretella is the Executive Director of the American College of Pediatricians.  She is a board-certified general pediatrician with a special interest in adolescent mental and sexual health. The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) is a national organization of pediatricians and other healthcare professionals dedicated to the health and well-being of children. Formed in 2002, the College is committed to fulfilling its mission by producing sound policy, based upon the best available research, to assist parents and to influence society in the endeavor of child rearing. 

Unlike the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American College of Pediatricians
objects to the normalization of childhood gender identity disorder (GID) as promoted by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).  Dr. Michelle A. Cretella takes to task the American Academy of Pediatrics as one of three authors in this article, Psychological and Medical Care of Gender Nonconforming Youth, published in the December issue of Pediatrics.  

The  American Academy of Pediatrics is on record prioritizing the opinion of a five-year-old over the considered judgment of the child’s parents in this post by Kevin Edward White, Politicizing Pediatrics: How the AAP’s Transgender Guidelines Undermine Trust in Medical Authority

Following are facts presented by Dr. Cretella through her remarks and slide presentation:

  • In the past, doctors prescribed therapy to conform children's emotionally disturbed minds to their bodies.  Today, doctors prescribe social impersonation, drugs and surgery to conform the healthy body to an emotionally disturbed mind.
  • Gender Dysphoria occurs in only 1% of children.  60 – 98% outgrow this feeling.
  • Activists lie, frighten and bully parents through statement like these: "You must affirm children's transgender claims of your child will commit suicide" or "Parents who do not accept their child and do not follow the child's wishes are abusive parents."
  • Nouns have gender; People have sex:  Sex means male or female.  Gender used to mean male or female; masculine or feminine and nothing more.  Today gender also includes false identities; therefore term 'gender' must be avoided or specifically defined to mean 'sex’ in law and policy.
  • Lupron used as a puberty blocker in children is also used to treat prostate cancer. It may cause lasting health problems. 
  • Girls are encouraged to have double mastectomies as young as 13 years old. Activists surgeons are advocating to perform genital surgeries on boys and girls under 18 years of age.
  • Transgenderism depends on very aggressive campaign of agitation and propaganda to condition people to get with the program, thereby sowing conditions for totalitarianism.
  • Transition does not permit suicide.  A large, 30-year study in Sweden found rates for suicide 19 times greater among adults who undergo cross-sex surgery as compared to the general population and Sweden is among the most LGBTQ affirming nations in the world.
  • Noted below are a few books that help children celebrate BE WHO YOU ARE. Around age 7 children begin to understand that sex doesn't change.  Under age 7 children are vulnerable to transgender ideology as promoted by “Drag Queen” impersonations.

Red: A Crayon's Story by Michael Hall  and Introducing Teddy:  A Gentle Story About Gender and Friendship by Jessica Walton

Screen Shot 2019-03-20 at 1.55.28 PMSession 3:  Denise Shick

Denise Shick is author of My Daddy’s SecretWhen Hope Seems Lost, and Understanding Gender Confusion. She serves on the academic council of the International Children's Rights Institute and directs Help 4 Families Ministry.

Read Denise Shick's powerful and remarkable story here.  Like the Walt Heyer story, Denise Shick's account offers compelling reading.

“When Denise was nine years old, her father told her a secret:  he wanted to be a woman. Over time, this led to him wearing Denise's clothes and abandoning their family.  As a result, Denise struggled with her own sexuality, alcohol, and thoughts of suicide.  Denise's story is also one of redemption through Christ, and how the love and true life found only in Jesus Christ was demonstrated to her through the love of her husband. 

Denise Shick now says:  "Today's culture proclaims that a person who chooses to change gender is being honest and courageous — true to his or her nature.  Truth is what aligns with reality, and the reality is my dad was abused as a child. . . The "reality" TV shows that portray transgenderism as the new frontier in human freedom and self-fulfillment are not telling the whole story.  I know from experience." 

Screen Shot 2019-03-20 at 1.55.09 PMSession 4: Pastor Douglas Wilson

Douglas Wilson is a Senior Fellow of Theology at New Saint Andrews College in Moscow, Idaho, and pastor at Christ Church in Moscow.  Pastor and theologian Doug Wilson is a prolific author whose works include Rules for Reformers; Five Cities that Ruled the WorldExcused Absence:  Should Christian Kids Leave Public School?; and Future Men: Raising boys to Fight Giants. Also recommended is Wilson's blog titled Blog & Mablog, a pun taken from Ezekiel 38:14-16. Wilson is also one of the editors of the popular homeschooling Omnibus series. 

Douglas Wilson began his "Sanity as Insurrection" remark by stating: 

"When it comes to the simple idea of “telling the truth,” I have to tell you that our culture passed that exit some time ago. We don’t just need to recover the practice of telling the truth, we need to recover a universe in which telling the truth is an actual possibility. We no longer inhabit a world in which lies occur (which has always been the case). We now inhabit an imaginary world constructed entirely out of lies, and all the frayed endings of our carnal bundle are starting to snap.

And this is why we are going to win, incidentally, even though currently we appear to be losing badly. In the long run, the visiting speaker said encouragingly, stupidity never works."

Wilson also had this to say:

"When it comes to our political life together, the two great questions of philosophy can be found on playgrounds everywhere. They are why? And who says? Insert those questions into everything.”

Thereafter, Wilson enumerated and explained seven concepts that we must learn how to handle.  For further insight read here Wilson's remarks as presented on Saturday, March 16, 2018 at Stone Church in Orland Park.

  • Endowed by their Creator;
  • The Creator/creature divide;
  • The correspondence view of truth;
  • Inescapable concepts;
  • Culture is upstream from politics, and religion is upstream from culture;
  • Education is inescapably religious;
  • There is no virtue or vice in a transitive verb.

As affirmed by Douglas Wilson:  "Any Christian who sends their child/children to a public school is crazy."

A lively Question and Answer session followed.

Welcome by Executive Director David E. Smith; featured guest introduction, Linda D. Jernigan

Featured and unannounced guest Ms. Linda D. Jernigan was introduced by Executive Director David Smith. She spoke in the morning following the 2nd scheduled guest, Dr. Michelle Cretella, as an "Ex-gay" activist who regularly partners with the Illinois Family Institute, lobbying against LGBTQ rights in Illinois. 

Ms. Linda D. Jernigan is an ex-homosexual who experienced same-sex attractions most of her life.  In addition, Linda never felt like a woman, not even as a young girl. By age twenty-one Linda lived as a transgendered; wearing men’s clothes, shoes, jewelry, and cologne.  Nothing about Linda’s outer appearance resembled a woman.  Linda felt like a man and lived her life as a man for a couple decades. Read here Linda's story about her transformation back to being what God intended her to be, a woman. 

David Smith opened the Worldview Conference on "trans" ideology, asking participants to call their legislators to oppose the following legislation:

  • HB2495 repeals the state’s ban on the gruesome practice of partial-birth abortions, and the Illinois Abortion Law of 1975 which includes born-alive protections for the survivors of abortion and a ban on late-term abortion.
  • HB2467 repeals the Parental Notice of Abortion Act.
  • HB902 deals with the push to legalize recreational marijuana. 
  • HB246 requires that the "teaching of U.S. history in public schools shall include a study of the role and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, land transgender people" in grades K-12.  



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  1. Daniel Villarreal said, “I and a lot of other people want to indoctrinate, recruit, teach and expose children to queer sexuality. I would very much like for many of these young boys to grow up and start…” More here: https://goo.gl/5DwcPZ
    Just like Hitler’s ‘Brown Shirts’ of 1939 indoctrination very successful starting at a child’s young age. The wicked are becoming more and more wicked as we get closer to the Lord Jesus’ soon return.
    Now we legally murder babies at birth, have same sex marriage and in California homosexuals teach SEX ED TO our kids and parents have no say. And a similar law just passed the House of Illinois … HB246 … will the Senate make it a law here too? Disgusting and abomination!

  2. Thanks, Nancy! Thanks to IFI for getting the truth out. The sheer insanity by the Left should be off-putting to “Normal” but the indoctrination is so constant that people get worn down & confused. The demonization of religion has been very effective.

  3. I think this is truly a wonderful opportunity to see why relying on a ‘conservative news’ type of website or source about issues like this is dangerous, and how easy it is for sites like this to totally mislead you in a very manipulative and dishonest way.
    The article you quoted is wildly misrepresenting three authors as ‘experts’, and one huge study (quoted by the only one doctor/ MD referenced in the entire article) is referenced in a way which is also simply dishonest and misleading.
    I’d appreciate if you read my entire email, but if you don’t the simple summary is that the study quoted is made to seem like the suicide rate was 19x higher for trans people after surgery. However, not only does the study and researchers make an entirely different conclusion than implied here but the study’s results of suicide rates is FAR, FAR, LESS than the suicide rate for pre-surgery trans individuals in the general population. We’re talking 3 out of 1000 (after transition surgery) instead of 400 out of 1000 (trans population who have not undergone surgery).
    Maybe even more importantly, your article is quoting 4 people as if they are ‘experts’, but 3 are just individual AUTHORS and NOT researchers or doctors. 3 people with unique stories about how they knew people or who themselves were not really trans but just confused or traumatized does not get to speak for the entire trans population of roughly 1.4 million people in the US alone who identify as trans.
    In addition to the one and only study the one and only doctor in your article being totally misrepresented which I’ll explain more about, here’s some additional research worth making note of:
    A study from Belgium in 2006 found that trans people’s rates of suicide attempts dropped from 29.3% before surgery to 5.1% after.
    Another study of 50 trans women who received genital surgery found that their physical and mental health was not significantly different from samples of cis women.
    A 2013 study of 433 trans people in Canada found that 27% of those who hadn’t begun transitioning had attempted suicide in the past year, but this dropped to 1% for those who were finished transitioning.
    And a 2010 meta-analysis of 28 studies showed that 78% of trans people showed an improvement in psychiatric symptoms after transitioning, with a level of psychological functioning similar to the general population and greater than that of untreated trans people.
    It is important to be informed about the impact on trauma, parenting, and psychological influence on gender identity. Of course it is important to know there are stories out there of people who have experienced abuse and psychological circumstances which influence a greater proclivity towards ‘identifying with’ the ‘gender-fluid’ movement. It is important to know there are many ways this can play out and that there is no black-and-white answer to what causes an individual to feel their internal gender identity does not fit their physical parts.
    However, as important as all of that is, it is thoroughly irresponsible to cite three out of four ‘authors’ (AKA people who have 1 personal and *anecdotal* story about a unique circumstance) as somehow representing a firm scientific stance on gender identity and transsexual populations. The article you cited wraps up a number of personal stories from people who are- no more than well written authors who have sold books- which does means they are individual stories worth keeping in mind but they are…
    …simply, not, scientific representations of a population of tens of thousands of people. They are authors and no matter how well they write they are just people and not scientists.
    Of course some people are going to be ‘unique examples’ and have stories of how abuse and trauma led to gender dysphoria. But you don’t get to ignore research into tens of thousands of people’s experiences just because someone wrote a NYT Best Seller that was more ‘convincing’ about their one personal story.
    The one doctor MD, Michelle A Cretella, is addressing a very important point. That is that letting children be the primary decision makers in choosing a serious and sometimes irreversible sex-change operation has huge risks and should be looked at far more carefully. I wholeheartedly agree. But the only research presented about adults who transitioned in her part of the article was a large Swedish study that found an increased suicide rate in adults having sex reassignment surgery.
    This study, which can be read here in depth (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3043071/) concludes that:
    This highlights that post surgical transsexuals are a risk group that need long-term psychiatric and somatic follow-up. Even though surgery and hormonal therapy alleviates gender dysphoria, it is apparently not sufficient to remedy the high rates of morbidity and mortality found among transsexual persons. Improved care for the transsexual group after the sex reassignment should therefore be considered.
    The study in no way suggests that these people should not have had the surgery, but rather that the surgery did alleviate gender dysphoria but was not sufficient on it’s own and people needed far more psychiatric help.
    Your article knowingly, irresponsibly, and I would certainly say maliciously misrepresents that article in a way that is both taken out of context and dishonestly communicated.
    The study in Sweden found that transsexual people post operation were found to have a suicide rate 19 times greater than the normal population, and that is correct. In normal populations the suicide rate was .1 out of 1000 people, and in this study those post-surgery for sex transition the suicide rate was 2.7 out of 1000 people.
    So yes, 19x higher in the big picture but still only 2.7 out of 1000, or less than 1% of successful suicides. In the biggest US studies of normal populations, transgender individuals in general have a 40% rate (or 400 out of 1000 people) of SUCCESSFUL SUICIDES.
    Statistics can be very easily interpreted in so many different ways based on how the studies are done, the populations they focus on, and the questions the study was asking in the first place. But if you really look more closely at the biggest studies done around the world, the study your article quotes proves the opposite of what it claims if anything.
    If you want to read the research responsibly, you can see 60 scientific sources explained and linked at the bottom of this page:
    You can also read the 2nd to last section of the article at this link, the section titled ‘The Karolinska Institute Study’ if you want to read a more thorough explanation of why the claims made based on the study referenced in your article are beyond reasonable:
    If you read my entire email, and really took the time to see what the facts say compared to how your article was directly misleading about the research and a few individual author’s stories- you now have a wonderful experience of how (in a big way) a conservative site like this cherry-picks information, misleads readers about what means what, and ultimately ignores and deceives away from the truth.
    We all have a responsibility to be far more informed about important issues like this. The research shows that these populations are some of the most neglected and mistreated in the world. Imagine that even with the hate they experienced, African Americans in the 1950’s did not suffer suicide rates at 30% to 40% of the population.
    How could it be that much worse? How alone and unaccepted do trans people have to feel for 4 out of 10 trans people to kill themselves?
    Every day we hold beliefs that make these people ‘less-than’, is one more day we perpetuate or at least leave room for the intolerance that leads to such deep suffering and self-harm.