Holy Hormones Journal: Please let me humbly and fervently say I am not against the transgender population… but I also do not believe entirely in the media spin that the exponential growth is due to awareness and acceptance. I mean it was just a year ago that the LGBT community’s right to marriage was upheld by the Supreme Court. And then it seemed like within weeks that Bruce Jenner’s washed up identity as a former Olympian and Kardashian was transformed into the transgender bombshell of Caitlin Jenner. Many of us have been blogging about this – and there is even a rumor that Jenner in the media spotlight once again is regretting his decision (check the tabloids).
I even did a radio show on the issue with on very astute colleague who called Jenner out when she said she now knew what it was like to be a woman. Really? 60 and a rich bombshell?
It was a year ago in June when I was confronted with the issue on a 180 minutes PBS Frontline special titled “Growing up Trans” that caught my attention.
Just a generation ago, it was adults, not kids, who changed genders. But today, many children are transitioning, too — with new medical options, and at younger and younger ages. In Growing Up Trans, FRONTLINE takes viewers on an intimate and eye-opening journey inside the struggles and choices facing transgender kids and their families.
My concern – as well as other researchers, is the effect the endocrine disrupting chemicals are having on our genes. Years ago we heard that fish were being affected by estrogenic compounds in the water. Is it possible that our children are too?
Sadly, just like Jenner who may be confused about his change in gender, children are being put on experimental hormone blocking drugs (PBS program) to delay puberty until the child makes a decision about their sexuality. Can you imagine making a decision about your gender in your teens that will affect your identity for the rest of your life? Sadly, some kids (and I mean kids) regret their decision. And their family’s devastated. There is a time coming when the birth announcement of “It’s a she” (or he) may no longer be true. Girls identifying as boys have vaginas and boys identifying as girls have penises. And yes, that means that boys will be able to bear a child.
Researchers: Estimate of Americans Identifying as Transgender Doubled
Voice of America
June 30, 2016 9:15 PM
On a day when the Pentagon announced it is lifting its ban on transgender men and women openly serving in the U.S. military, a research institute in California announced findings that the number of men and women identifying as transgender has doubled over the last 10 years.
Jody Herman, a public policy scholar at the Williams Institute at the University of California at Los Angeles, told VOA Thursday that the results are from people self-reporting on U.S. government surveys. She said while the study did not examine the factors behind the rise in self-identification, growing social acceptance of transgender people might have influenced the rise in numbers.
“That’s one possible explanation,” she said, “that it’s becoming more mainstream.” She says that as social acceptance of transgender identity grows, it is likely that people would be more willing to identify as such on a survey.
Four Williams Institute researchers — Herman, Gary Gates, Andrew Flores and Taylor Brown, all public policy experts — compiled their results from the surveys by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control that ask respondents if they identify as transgender.
A previous study compiled from data collected in 2003 and 2007-2008 estimated that 0.3 percent of the U.S. population identified as transgender. The new results, using a larger sample size, put the estimate at 0.6 percent across the United States, with extremes of 0.3 percent estimated in the sparsely populated, conservative state of North Dakota and 0.8 percent in the Pacific Island state of Hawaii.
Bigger sample, better data
Because the transgender question was an optional part of the survey, the earlier study had data only from the states of California and Massachusetts. The latest study, using 2014 data, had responses to the question from 19 states, enabling the researchers to use more sophisticated tools to estimate the transgender population across all 50 states.
The newer method relies on demographic information such as race, ethnicity, age and educational level to predict the likelihood that an individual would identify as transgender in states where that information was not available.
Perhaps not surprisingly, younger people — those between the ages of 18 and 24 — were more likely than older people to identify as transgender. They were also more likely to be of racial or ethnic minorities, and to have lower incomes.
In some cases, the demographic factors explained results that might otherwise seem surprising. The conservative southern state of Texas, for example, had a transgender population on the high end of the scale, at 0.6 percent. But 38 percent of the Texas population is Latino, according to the Pew Research Center, and Latinos are more likely than whites to identify as transgender.