Massachusetts recently passed a law that boys who thought they were girls or girls who thought they were boys could use the other restroom. There is a mountain of practical problems: most teenage boys at some base level want to enter the girls’ room, yet most teenage girls would feel extremely uncomfortable with this. Many others will deal with those. I see two deeper problems: Gnosticism and Pedagogy.
In general there are three ways to view man: just matter, body and soul, or soul with body. If we are just matter obviously, whatever sex organs you have would determine who you are. The other two have a subtler distinction. A sacramental outlook says that we are our bodies and the body expresses the deeper reality of our spirit; a Gnostic outlook says that we are just a soul that uses a body.
This may seem pointless, but so much of our Catholic faith hinges on a sacramental outlook. If Gnosticism is true, we have no Eucharist, no Baptism, no incarnation, no salvation; this entire world is pointless.
John Paul II’s Theology of the Body points out that we communicate through our bodies. Our body shows not just our gender but the deeper reality that all people find their fulfillment being a gift for one another.
If we accept that a boy can be a girl or a girl can be a boy, we accept Gnosticism. Yet how can a Gnostic love? If he cannot love with his body – being only a tool – his souls remains incapable of love. Yet love is one of the fundamental human experiences. Love always refers to the mystery of the gift, to the sacramentality of the body.
We have to remember that this is a rule for schools. Most of those who at some point in their teen years wonder if they are the other gender are going through a phase. We need to help them get through this phase. Instead of doing this, Massachusetts wants to get them stuck in that stage.
Maturity is integration with who you are. If these people were born one sex, that is who they are so they need to accept that and put together a life based on what has been given them.
Some will remain with issues of gender-identity as adults. We need to have charity with such people but at the same time we have to admit it’s not normal. You can’t believe yourself into being something you are not. We need to help these adults but we need to help those going through a phase even more.
Beyond making girls uncomfortable and letting boys fulfill base desires, such legislation teaches everyone that our body doesn’t matter and causes those teens to continue with a problem rather than helping them overcome it.