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Letters to the Editor: Faux-debates over transgender people are cruel and unscientific

People who support transgender rights rally
People who support transgender rights rally outside the Alabama State House in Montgomery in 2021.
(Jake Crandall / Associated Press)
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To the editor: I appreciate Robin Abcarian’s column on the moral panic culture war being perpetrated by conservative activists and legislators against transgender kids and families.

I also very much appreciate The Times’ coverage of transgender news in general, especially while other major outlets like the New York Times and the Atlantic magazine have chosen to uncritically accept conservative cultural norms as an objective starting point for debate. Those outlets misrepresent transphobic writing as balanced reporting, and it is important that our local paper rejects that biased and deeply harmful framing.

Debates over whether a marginalized group has the right to exist, to control their own bodies, to be free of reproductive organ inspections by conservative politicians, to be visible, to be spoken about and to speak for themselves, to seek medical care, and to live, work, study and play like anyone else free from harassment and retaliation — these are not legitimate debates.

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That so many of us in post-Roe vs. Wade America are targets of these dehumanizing faux-debates is a clear indication of how precarious civil rights are in this country. I am glad that, at least for now, The Times seems to be rejecting this kind of lucrative click bait.

Courtney Lamb, Culver City

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To the editor: Abcarian suggests that anyone who disagrees with her position on pronouns is hysterical and engaged in “pure MAGA politics.” I believe there is a vast middle ground on this issue.

Unlike most MAGA supporters, I and most people I know (most of whom are Democrats) have no objection to calling transgender people how they identify. That is very reasonable and considerate. What we do have a problem with is having to use plural pronouns to identify single individuals who are nonbinary.

Abcarian indicates that she was brought up being taught the importance of precision in language, but now she’s “so over that” because of the way “people actually use language.” I submit most people still use singular pronouns to describe single individuals.

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G. Randall Garrou, Los Angeles

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