Who Decides Gender Roles?

Earlier this year I wrote a blog post about how schools in Massachusetts are beginning to change the rules to allow students to determine their own gender identity and to use locker rooms and restrooms accordingly. Those changes signaled, I believe, what is going to become the norm in the U.S.

Well, a week ago California became the first state to pass a state law requiring public schools to cater to so-called transgender students. According to an article in the Washington Post, the law requires schools to accept students’ own claims about their gender:

Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown announced that he had signed AB1266, which also will allow transgender students to choose whether they want to play boys’ or girls’ sports. The new law gives students the right “to participate in sex-segregated programs, activities and facilities” based on their self-perception and regardless of their birth gender. [emphasis added]

Now, many secular academics today make the claim that gender is purely a social construct and that people can determine their own gender. (For more on this, see Steve Golden’s article, “Are Gender Roles a Social Construct?”) But such an anti-biblical philosophy, I believe, will lead to a host of problems, especially in school settings.

The spokesman for the author of the California law said that the fears parents and students have who disagree with the new California law—which likely includes many Christians—are “overblown.” Apparently, many California lawmakers are more concerned about being “at the forefront of leadership on transgender rights” than they are about what God’s Word has to say about gender—or about the safety and privacy concerns of parents and students involved in California schools.

Really, what laws like this come down to is a rejection of the biblical distinction between males and females. Of course, we at Answers in Genesis acknowledge that this is a complex issue, but Scripture is clear that in the beginning, God created mankind as male and female (Genesis 1:27). There is nothing in Scripture to indicate that God created some as anatomically male but who identify as female or vice versa. (We do recognize that, because of sin’s effects on the world, there are physical variations and aberrations that do cause legitimate difficulty for a very small number of people, such as hermaphroditism. For more on this, read Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell’s feedback article on hermaphroditism.)

Like I’ve said before, as Christians, we should affirm our children’s God-given genders and cultivate godly masculinity and femininity in them, rather than encouraging them to abandon the gender God gave them in the womb:

For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. (Psalm 139:13–14)

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,

Ken

Steve Golden assisted in the writing of this blog post.