Monday, August 18, 2014

Transgender Teen " would be treated with the respect and inclusive opportunities that all students deserve“ If She Decides to Attend Thorne MS

Transgender Student Not Alone in Facing Challenges in Middle School
 Photo by Asbury Park Press/Facebook.
The drama surrounding transgender teen Rachel Pepe being allowed to attend Thorne Middle School in Middletown as the person she feels she is, has attracted some national press; Yahoo News has picked up her story today after it was first reported over the weekend by the Asbury Park Press.

The initial report of this story shocked me, I couldn't believe how insensitive and callous school officials were when informed that a student who was known as Brian Pepe by my son and his friends, felt that he no longer could identified himself as a boy and wished to be know as Rachel.

I am happy though that School Superintendent Dr. William George, has decided to embrace the situation as opposed to sticking his head in the sand, hoping that it will go away by issuing a press release earlier today addressing the situation which stated, “ ...administration and staff members pride themselves on character education and welcome diversity. This student is welcome at Thorne, and if she chooses to attend Thorne, she would be treated with the respect and inclusive opportunities that all students deserve.“

A community has an obligation to provide a safe and instructive learning environment for all its students regardless of gender identity. If Middletown's school system doesn't wish to accommodate this student or other students like her, then they are obligated to look into alternative educational opportunities for for such students. I'm glad to hear though that Dr. George and school system is willing to work with this student rather that push her away.

It's times like these that we find out exactly what type of community Middletown is.


Anonymous said...

Of course this student will be treated well at Thorne middle school. Students of middle school age are known for there compassion. No parent will have a problem with a boy dressed as a girl using the same rest rooms and locker rooms as their daughters. There are practical problems I think you may be overlooking.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 10:15

There aren't any problems that couldn't be worked out, namely the child can change for gym class and use the restroom in the nurse's office.

Middletown schools have a very strict no bulling policy, student expressing their "compassion" will be administered to appropriately.

Anonymous said...

Mike if the school is able to change the nature of bullies through the use of a policy maybe a professional can help this child with his Gender identity disorder. A transgender life will always be hard for him, nether article said if his mother sought help for him.

Anonymous said...

Mike if the school is able to change the nature of bullies through the use of a policy maybe a professional can help this child with his Gender identity disorder. A transgender life will always be hard for him, nether article said if his mother sought help for him.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 4:32,

A person doesn't choose to be gay, lesbian, bi-sexual or transgender anymore than you choose to be straight. No one makes those types of choices in their lives. They just are.

To assume that this child is sick and suffering some sort of identity disorder is ignorant on your part. It's that type of ignorance that leads young people LGBT people to contemplate and commit suicide.

Once the world realizes that GOD isn't perfect and creates people that are different from each other, the better this world will be.

Anonymous said...

No Mike, YOU are the ignorant one.
Suggesting that the reason this child is transgendered is because God is imperfect is pure ignorance.
God is perfect and does not make mistakes with the possible exception of allowing you to spread your lack of knowledge on this blog.

Anonymous said...

Mike the christian belief is that God made man and creation perfect. Gen1:31. Through the actions of 1 man sin entered creation Rom 5:12. psychology today says it is an illness.

Anonymous said...

Let's pray the gay out! GOD will take care of everything.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 7:51

Yes, and the earth was created 5,000 years ago and man walked with dinosaurs.

Ignorance is bliss

Anonymous said...

Then you must be a very happy guy.

You run a blog and insult people who disagree with you.

No wonder most articles have zero comments.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 9:01,

The article that you refer to was last updated in 2005. Not exactly current I'd say.

For years transgenderism was considered a mental disorder or psychological disorder that could cured or changed by counselling. That viewpoint has changed since 2005.

" It is important to note that gender nonconformity is not in itself a mental disorder.", states the document that is linked below.

Anonymous said...

Mike, the bible doesn't say when creation occurred. Many Christians believe in an "old earth" view. No one wants to be an alcoholic and children of alcoholics are much more likely to become alcoholics. They were born that way yet we don't redefine sobriety for them or encourage them to engage in risky behavior. This child should see a professional maybe he can be helped.

Anonymous said...

Stick to your reasoning,Mike, these wanna be religious protestors just show their homophobia. They should mind their own business and let the public school system and the law ,if necessary, take care of a situation that not many of us are qualified to deal with.

The more publicity this situation gets, the more this teen will suffer. Some of your posters really exhibit their ignorance and they really should enlighten themselves before they spout off !!

Anonymous said...

Sorry Mike I was responding to the 5,000 year post. Here is another link to the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: Gender identity disorder is listed as 302.85. This child is too young to vote or enter a contract. This is not a decision to be made without professional help.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 9:12

No one is encourage these kids to engage in "risky behavior" anymore than the child of an alcoholic you refer to should stay away from alcohol.

Transgenderism is not a mental disorder, it is biological in nature and often shows itself when children are extremely young.

Anonymous said...

Mike, the view was changed due to political and pc pressure and not medical science. That said, I think the issues this child will face attending school can be overcome with a little thinking and scheduling modification. I think the nurse's office for changing was a great suggestion.

Still, children are going to be children and if anyone thinks this child will have it easy due to a anti bullying policy is whistling in the wind while Rome burns.

I don't envy this child or her parents, it's a hard road ahead and I wish her luck.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 9:53

as per your link:

Treatment - "...Treatment is likely to be long-term with small gains made on underlying issues as treatment progresses."

Prognosis - "Mixed. The goals of treatment are not as clear as in other disorders, as same-sex identification may be very difficult to achieve. More achievable goals may include acceptance of assigned gender and resolution of other difficulties such as depression or anxiety."

Bottom line here, you can assume identifying oneself as Transgender is a mental disorder and waste thousands of dollars and many years of time and still wind up being extremely unhappy with yourself and transgender.

It's biological people, not mental.

If any counseling is needed its to ensure that the person who identifies as transgender understands that their is nothing wrong with that and to except who you are and that GOD makes everyone different.

I would suggest counseling however for those that can't except that people are different and insist that those who are different conform to their sense of what is morally, religiously correct.

You can't pray the gay away or the transgender away anymore than you can change a person's skin color or blood type.

Anonymous said...

Mike Anon 10:15, 4:32, 9:01, 9:22, 9:53 here again. I never insulted you or your position. I am not saying pray the gay away. I am saying this child needs help. The mother claimed he would sleep 17 to 20 hours this is a symptom of clinical depression. Christians and Jews are tolerant people that is why in the west we have these conversations.

Michael Morris said...

Anon 12:08

Yes, prior to telling her parents what was bothering her.

Does she need counseling? Possibly.But not as some sort of conversion therapy, but on how to accept herself and how to deal with the emotional roller coaster that she will be encountering over the next few months and possible years.

I would suggest her family look into a support group of like teens and young adults to help her cope.

Michael Morris said...

And BTW, not that it matters - to my recollection I've never met this child (he does look familiar to me though) but my son has.

As Brian, he was a quiet kid who would sit at my son and his friends at the same lunch table sometimes according to my son. None of the kids knew of his problems. He was just another kid.

I am proud of my son's reaction when he heard about Brian becoming Rachel this past Saturday night. His first response was to say "Oh boy", then he shrugged his shoulders and said "OK". When pressed by his mother and I he said it didn't matter and wasn't bothered by it and would accept her for who she is.

Anonymous said...

I'm very glad to read of the school distict's compassionate response to this child's plight. I worry about the issues she will face, and hope the school can make the necessary accommodations to keep her and her classmates safe and comfortable. I know at that at that age, I would have been very uncomfortable with a transgenedered girl in the locker room-I was uncomfortable enough changing in front of other girls. Counseling for Rachel and some kind of information and support program for the other children seem critical for this to be a success.

I read a book years ago that helped me to understand what it is like to be transgendered. It is entitled "Crossing: A Memoir" by Deirdre McCloskey. It is available at the excellent Middletown Public Library.

Your Leonardo Reader

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget- this is a child
and should be treated with dignity and respect. Just as each and everyone of the posters would expect their child to be treated.