Reading Time: 2 minutes

What does it mean, and why is it important?

Cisgender: A term for people whose gender identity matches their sex assigned at birth.  For example, someone who identifies as a woman and was assigned female at birth is a cisgender woman. The term cisgender is the opposite of the word transgender.

Transgender: Denoting or relating to a person whose sense of personal identity and gender does not correspond with their birth sex.

As the title says, what does it all mean? And why is it important?

Why do we (as a society) care whether a person identifies themselves as male or female? As Ben Franklin asked about such things, does it “pick my pocket or break my leg?” If not, and in most, if not all, cases it does not, why are so many people so obsessed with this?

The World Health Organization has come to terms with it. On May 29, 2019, they announced that transgender people will no longer be classified as having a mental disorder. They now use the term “gender incongruence” to describe people whose gender identity is different from the gender they were assigned at birth. Gender incongruence “was taken out from the mental health disorders because we had a better understanding that this wasn’t actually a mental health condition, and leaving it there was causing stigma,” Dr. Lale Say, coordinator of WHO’s Adolescents and at-Risk Population team, said. “So, in order to reduce the stigma while also ensuring access to necessary health interventions, this was placed in a different chapter,” Say explained.

If you Google this, you will find lots of opinions from prominent medical facilities on this. Some that agree and others that disagree with the WHO. So who is right, and why does it matter?

My observation: Those who most obsess with it are religious folks. They hate the idea that a person can decide whether to be male or female. God decided that when the egg in their mother’s womb was fertilized, and they damn well better live with His decision.

As a nonbeliever, I find that kind of thinking to be arbitrary, and even oppressive. How are they harmed by transgender people? Okay, there is the bathroom problem in public schools. Is there any evidence that trans kids choose their identity so that they can sexually assault fellow students in the bathroom? Find me evidence of this. I don’t see any.

If not, then what’s the problem?