"How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg?
Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn't make it a leg."
The quote is attributed to Abraham Lincoln, speaking from a less enlightened time than ours, but is it still accurate? In a Michigan Court of Appeals case held in 2021 looking to overrule a criminal conviction, there was no difference in the opinion among the three-judge panel over the lower court's ruling. In a concurring opinion, however, Judge Mark Boonstra used Lincoln's words to address a matter that came up and added confusion in the case.
Boonstra would say that he respected the right of the defendant to self-identify, the defendant was a biological male, identified as a female, and who claimed to have multiple personalities and preferred the pronouns "they/them" over "he/him", noting that it led to a lot of confusion in the court, with even the defendant's lawyer using the masculine pronouns in oral argument. He was dismayed that the court's written opinion lacked clarity by wokefully acknowledging the defendant's use of 'they/them' pronouns, concluding that he declined to join in the insanity.
This seemed logical enough, but the ACLU took notice and along with 18 other LGBTQ organizations including the LGBTQA section of the Michigan State Bar Association sent a letter to Chief Justice McCormack of the Michigan Supreme Court and Chief Judge Gleicher of the Michigan Court of Appeals condemning Judge Boonstra’s words. The letter also suggested that judges undergo “cultural competency training". A supreme court that leans left took the issue up and would arrive with a decision to change their court rules to catch up with the culture. It initially read:
“Parties and attorneys may also include any personal pronouns in the name section of the caption, and courts are required to use those personal pronouns when referring to or identifying the party or attorney, either verbally or in writing. Nothing in this subrule prohibits the court from using the individual’s name or other respectful means of addressing the individual if doing so will help ensure a clear record.”
At around the same time this policy was being crafted, an interesting case in the US Sixth Circuit Court was being decided. In March 2021, the 6th Circuit ruled in the favor of an Ohio professor, Dr. Nicholas Meriwether, upholding his First Amendment rights after he declined a male student’s demand to be referred to as a woman with feminine titles and pronouns (“Miss,” “she,” etc.). Dr. Meriwether offered to use the student’s preferred first or last name instead and the university accepted that compromise, only to reverse course days later. Ultimately, it punished him by putting a written warning in his personnel file and threatened “further corrective actions” unless he spoke contrary to his own philosophical and Christian convictions.
The 6th Circuit explained that if “professors lacked free-speech protections when teaching, a university would wield alarming power to compel ideological conformity. A university president could require a pacifist to declare that war is just, a civil rights icon to condemn the Freedom Riders, a believer to deny the existence of God, or a Soviet émigré to address his students as ‘comrades.’ That cannot be.”
In April 2022, Dr. Meriwether’s case concluded with a favorable settlement, in which the university agreed to pay $400,000 in damages and attorney’s fees, rescind the written warning it issued in June 2018, and affirm his right to address students consistent with his beliefs.
"This case forced us to defend what used to be a common belief—that nobody should be forced to contradict their core beliefs just to keep their job," said Meriwether's attorney Travis Barham. "Dr. Meriwether went out of his way to accommodate his students and treat them all with dignity and respect, yet his university punished him because he wouldn't endorse an ideology that he believes is false. We're pleased to see the university recognize that the First Amendment guarantees Dr. Meriwether—and every other American—the right to speak and act in a manner consistent with one's faith and convictions."
Another would add: "Public universities should welcome intellectual and ideological diversity, where all students and professors can engage in meaningful discussions without compromising their core beliefs. Dr. Meriwether rightly defended his freedom to speak and stay silent, and not conform to the university's demand for uniformity of thought. We commend the university for ultimately agreeing to do the right thing, in keeping with its reason for existence as a marketplace of ideas."
I highlight the Meriwether case, because the Michigan Supreme Court has now passed in a 4-3 vote a first-of-its-kind court rule (no other state has gone there) in an order that requires judges to adopt the preferred pronouns of those who are before them. The language has gotten more specific but still puts a duty on the judge, one that may contradict their beliefs, the amendment states:
"Parties and attorneys may also include Ms., Mr., or Mx. as a preferred form of address and one of the following personal pronouns in the name section of the caption: he/him/his, she/her/hers, or they/them/theirs. Courts must use the individual’s name, the designated salutation or personal pronouns, or other respectful means that is not inconsistent with the individual’s designated salutation or personal pronouns when addressing, referring to, or identifying the party or attorney, either orally or in writing."
In Justice Brian Zahra's dissent to the order (p 10), he would say: "It is all too common for litigants possessing a scorched-earth mentality to delay, distract, and inject confusion into legal proceedings. The goal is usually a mistrial or to harbor error for appellate review. This is no small matter." Justice David Viviano would add, quoting Robert Bork:
"When courts dabble in politics, they invariably alienate the losing side of the political debate and forfeit legitimacy with large portions of the public... By once again taking stances in a
political debate, the Court will not earn the public’s trust, nor should it. Rather than
instilling confidence, the result, I fear, will be to encourage the view that this Court is a
political institution. If this view becomes entrenched, both sides may seek to use the
judicial power to advance their own political ends. And all that will matter in adjudicating
cases and administering the courts is the achievement of “politically desirable results."
ANALYSIS: The Ludington Torch finds it immensely troubling that the MSC has passed doctrine that could lead to judges being professionally disciplined for using wrong pronouns, could lead to very confusing transcripts, and could ultimately win some guilty defendants wins by technicalities. And how confusing it would be for a jury (and humiliating for the victim) to hear a male perpetrator of a rape against a woman choose to self-identify as female at trial and be addressed that way by the judge and defense attorney, while the prosecutor has to also take part in the charade lest they be chided by the judge for using the wrong pronoun.
The progressive faction of the MSC in ascendance either fails to see the relevance of the Meriwether case or thinks that ruling doesn't apply to the many Michigan judges in inferior courts who may now have their basic principles compromised as a trier of fact when they have to accept an obvious, or at least unproven, untruth. This faction of four of Michigan's wisest jurists would impose a duty on inferior court's officials to accept someone's perception of themselves without requiring any basis and promulgate that throughout the case as fact. Maybe that's why no other state courts or federal courts have gone down this rabbit hole.
Good for Boonstra for being the voice of sanity. I cannot emphasize enough how illogically stupid the people pushing the pronoun movement are. They are insidiously ignorant of science, biology, history and common sense. This is like reasoning with monkeys. Trying to point out what is obvious and genetically proven, that there are only 2 genders, seems to be an impossibility with these people. Where will they stop with their twisting and perversion of reality. These are the same kind of people who come down from a hallucinogenic drug high thinking they had just taken a trip in a space craft to the moon and back. These people are nuts and this craziness is spreading faster than a STD on a rabbit farm.
A family member of mine who is attending a publicly run university had to declare her pronouns before she was allowed to sign up for the particular class courses she needed to take for her degree. Another family member received a memo from the President of Michigan State University. Teresa Woodruff, the acting President, signed the memo using her personal pronouns. She is the President of a major university for God's sake and she is completely brainwashed. How are the youths of this country supposed to fight this insanity if those in charge are dumb as rocks. Now the higher courts are recognizing the legitimacy of using pronouns that have no meaning in the way they are being used and trying to force and coerce us, the sane people, into joining in their delusions. I repeat, the pronoun instigators and users are not normal but they are being elected and appointed to key positions that will effectively make their decisions the law of the land.
Do you want this to be normal? It will be, and soon.
Willy, gender is NOT binary, and neither is sex.
X&Y chromosome variations in males include:
X chromosome variations in females include:
That the human population is completely gender-binary is supported by neither science nor history. You can fear and hate people for whatever reason you like, but gender disphoria is a recognized medical/mental condition. Differences in gender identity have been present and documented throughout the history of civilizations and cultures going back thousands of years. People are only asking to be recognized as human beings worthy of respect and acceptance. Wanting to be addressed by a certain pronoun is no different than wanting to be addressed by a certain name. Why is this objectionable to you?
RK. You might want to explain your comments on chromosome variations in more detail to make your point. Show some scientific proof. The point I'm making, which you have missed, is that these gender varied, pronoun varied people you are describing are demanding to be recognized even though there is no real science that coincides with what they believe. They want people punished if folks don't comply with their demands. They are forcing others to adopt this multi pronoun business and want people crushed if they do not comply. They are forcing others by denying them their civil rights to express their opinion. Forcing others by denying them jobs and opportunities unless they comply with their beliefs. They are denying people the right to speak freely without repercussions. They are suppressing free speech whenever and where ever they can. They want to control what people think, do and say.
Most people could not care less what pronoun anybody uses. If you want to identify as a half white, half black, half lesbian, a she/he/it/they/them quarter horse or a blue eyed 8 foot tall pygmy then go for it. Don't expect me to agree with you when you look and act like a 3 foot tall chimpanzee.
They want to force women to compete with men in athletics. They want to have men share bathrooms and locker rooms with young girls. They want children indoctrinated into the homosexual life styles. They want parents to forcibly have their children change their sex if the child wants to after they have been brainwashed into thinking they are not who they are. This pronoun business is not voluntary in many areas of society and is being forced down peoples throats.
As I said, be anything you want, just don't force the World to agree with you and stay away from the children.
Sorry about the language in the video below. I tried to remove the video but was unable to do so. If you can erase the video X. I would appreciate it.
"... there is no real science that coincides with what they believe..." Wrong. A diagnosis for gender dysphoria is included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), a manual published by the American Psychiatric Association.
"They want people punished if folks don't comply with their demands." Right! I demand that public servants use my correct name and pronouns.
"They want to force women to compete with men in athletics." Why not? Are you afraid a girl might actually be better than a boy at something?
"They want to have men share bathrooms and locker rooms with young girls." So wrong. Citation please...
"They want children indoctrinated into the homosexual life styles." Wrong again. Not "indoctrinated into," but "educated about." It would be wrong NOT to educate children about different lifestyles. Innocence is just another word for ignorance.
Your hyperbolic arguments reveal a level of exaggeration far beyond reason. Gender disphoria is as real as any other disease. People have a right to whatever clinical management, treatments and remedies they wish. There is a lifetime's reading available for anyone who wants to pursue knowledge of gender issues. And if, thanks to book banners, you cannot find it in a public or school library, it is all right here on the internet. People have a right to be referred to as they wish by public servants. The reason for laws and policies that require gender-appropriate pronouns be used is that some public servants have refused to use them. What if you went to a city council meeting and they called you "Billy?" Why not simply allow people to be whoever they are and not try to force them to act binary when they are medically, psychologically, and emotionally not. That would be real freedom and respect, right?
Dysphoria is not a mental disorder. It is an emotion that describes how a person feels. "Research shows that people with dysphoria may be preoccupied with the future and see the world through a negative lens, making it difficult to gain perspective and consider realistic outcomes". Because a man declares that he is a woman does not make him a woman. They are in a make believe World, trying to force others to join them in their delusion by punishing them while using the legal system to force compliance.
Men are better athletes than women. That is a fact of nature. Men have stronger skeletal and muscular features. Forcing women to compete against men negates the spirit of competition. If you find that hard to believe then it is possible that you may have a sports dysphoria.
You most likely are not following the news of legitimate news agencies. Stories of men in women's / girl's bathrooms and locker rooms have been making news for years. Stories of girls being raped by men claiming to be female in bathrooms is true.
To call forcing children to learn about homosexual lifestyles as educational is another sign of of dysphoria. Who are you to decide what to teach other peoples children. These are matters for parents to teach if they want.https://www.heritage.org/gender/commentary/dont-be-fooled-gender-id...
You should take your own advice and find out exactly what is going on in schools, universities, businesses and the Government.
Apparently you didn't read what I wrote, so I'll repeat it: "A diagnosis for gender dysphoria is included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), a manual published by the American Psychiatric Association." This is what medical science says, but you can choose not to believe it if you wish. Bob Dylan said it best:
"Your old road is rapidly agin'. Please get out of the new one If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'"
Gender dysphoria is not a mental disorder. It is an emotion experienced by those regarding the nature of their gender identity.
Gender dysphoria (GD) is the distress a person experiences due to a mismatch between their gender identity—their personal sense of their own gender—and their sex assigned at birth. Previously, the diagnostic label gender identity disorder (GID) was used, until it was eliminated in 2013 with the release of the diagnostic manual DSM-5 in favor of the current term. The condition was renamed to remove the stigma associated with the term disorder.
How many times have I went to city council meetings and been addressed by officers in undeserved 'less than respectful' terms? Too many, and in fairness I have done the same when they deserved it.
The problem is that I could start claiming to be the second coming of Cleopatra, but that shouldn't force anyone to play along with my delusion. Rather than accept that I am Cleopatra, and help me live a lie, I would prefer them to point me towards the truth of the matter. I'm someone named XLFD, and the uninformed might wonder which gender I was, just like they might for 'RK Hubbard'. Truth and reason should prevail.