My name is Fred Butler and I recently read your open letter to Christians posted at Huffington Post. I am one of those “Christians” you attempt to shame regarding how your gender confused son has allegedly been treated.
Honestly, I am not someone who frequents HuffPo. I was linked to your article from a different page. I don’t visit HuffPo primarily because many of their posts are on topics I find sophomoric and immature, if not troubling and at times demeaning. For instance, the day I read your letter, linked in the sidebar was an article called “19 Women on the Best Things about Their Boobs.”
I hope you can appreciate the irony of your letter demanding Christians respect your transgendered kid’s sexual orientation linked along side another article sexually objectifying women’s breasts. And that on a leftist website that pretends to champion women’s rights. It’s that kind of reporting that turns me away from the website in the first place. I would imagine most God-fearing Christians you intend to reach with your letter believe the same way as I do, so more than likely you’re merely preaching to the choir with your open letter. Judging by the fist pumping cheerleaders in the comments that sounds exactly like what is happening.
But let me move on.
Before I begin, It may be helpful to clarify what it is a Christian actually believes. When I read your little jab about “buffet-style Christians,” I am working from the assumption you have been told that belief in Christian doctrine, particularly doctrine that defines human sexuality, is often maligned with misinterpretations from cherry-picked passages. If that is what you think, you have been sorely misinformed.
But please forgive me if I am being presumptuous. You may very well know standard Christian theology and doctrine. However, it is just in my experience with individuals critically hostile toward Christianity, especially individuals like yourself willing to publish an open letter taking us to task for our convictions, that I find those folks woefully ignorant when it comes to the Bible or basic Christian teaching. They tend to burn strawmen built from secondhand critical sources that are just as equally ignorant. Rarely have I encountered a critic writing open letters against Christians who accurately reflects what it is they believe. I sincerely get that sense from you when reading your letter.
As a Christian I believe that God exists and that He revealed Himself through His prophets and apostles in the pages of Scripture. I believe Scripture is God’s Word and that means it is infallible and inerrant in all that it records with both history and spiritual truth. (Yes, I realize the internet is filled with cranks and other self-appointed “experts” who have multi-paged websites supposedly refuting my assertion about the Bible, but a serious evaluation of their charges will easily debunk them).
I further believe Jesus was the Second person of the Trinity come in human flesh. He lived a life obedient to God the Father, was predestined by God to be crucified at the hands of both the Romans and the Jews, and then rose again to life three days later to secure eternal salvation for a redeemed people.
I believe all men and women without exception are born in sin, separated from God. That does not mean that all people are entirely given over to wicked depravity, but that their core, spiritual being is naturally hostile toward God and His law. All men are sinners, but they all may not live as sinfully as they could.
I also believe the Bible has a lot to tell us about sexual matters. God is our creator and His original creative design was one man and one woman for marriage for life. Jesus Christ, who is God and thus our creator, affirms in the four Gospels what Genesis 1 and 2 teach us about men and women and marriage. In fact, the NT writers also affirm the same truths. I also completely recognized that the entrance of sin into the world ruins God’s original intent with men, women, sex, marriage and the family. That is evident by the history of abuse, sexual sin, adultery, divorce, fornication, and yes, homosexual behavior.
Now, coming back to your letter.
You express anger with the name calling and ugly words people have thrown your way regarding your transgendered child. You go onto complain how the worst culprits in your mind are Christians, because Christians are supposed to be loving, compassionate, and non-judgmental to the “least of these” misunderstood people like you and your family, particularly your child.
But given what I just outlined above with basic Christianity, do you understand why Bible-believing Christians would not be so “accepting” of your life choices you are encouraging with your child? In order for me to be “affirming” of a boy becoming a girl, I would have to deny the fundamental truths of Scripture and change the theological commitments of my Christianity. Not only that, I’d have to deny the fundamental truth of reality that a man cannot become a woman no matter what he “feels.” The Bible is only affirming the truth of reality, and I’m sorry, but those are truths I will never relinquish.
As I pointed out above, you ridicule the “buffet-style Christians,” but why am I, the guy who affirms what has been the conviction of the historic, Christian faith regarding sexuality for the last 2,000 years, the so-called “buffet-style Christian,” whereas the new revisionists who want the Bible to openly affirm homosexuality are not? They are the ones who are truly picking and choosing the verses they want to highlight, or ignore, rather than taking the Bible as a unified, divinely inspired whole in the entirety of all 66 books.
But I think most Christians are disturbed that you want us to accept a transgendered NINE YEAR OLD! Even more to the point, you recount the story of when your son was five, he pitched a fit in the car one day crying that he was really a girl and after a little bit of soul searching and visits with therapists, you have been encouraging your son to be a girl ever since. If he is now nine years old, that means this transgendered fantasy has been going on for like FOUR YEARS! Can you not understand how any sane thinking person, not just Christians, see this as madness! I as a father of five children myself would even say it is parental abuse!
Mrs. McLaren, I honestly think the Christians you are encountering who have a gut-wrenching aversion to your son’s situation are responding not out of hate because they think your family is “icky,” but out of love and concern. You have only willfully blinded your eyes to the truth.
Ma’am, your son, no matter how much he may protest and claim he “feels” like a girl will never be a girl. He will never have a uterus or ovaries. He will never ovulate and have a period. He will never experience menstrual cramps or what it is to be pregnant and birth a baby. To cultivate his delusion will only serve to set him upon a course of self-destruction.
What is more, you have been feeding this lie for FOUR YEARS with a son who is now NINE YEARS OLD! He hasn’t even reached puberty yet! And all because he had an episode once when he was five insisting he was a girl. It never once occurred to you to tell him he is wrong? To actually pursue therapy? Instead you start calling him a “her,” telling everyone he is your “daughter,” and dressing him like a living doll? What on earth!?
What I find distressing, however, is that you are engaged with perpetrating what I consider to be the cruelest emotional and mental abuse upon your son and I, the Bible-believing Christian who believes God has established marriage between only a man and a woman and that people can never swap genders no matter how they “feel” about it, is the bad guy. Even more grievous is that our society pats you on the back and applauds your abuse. It truly is a twisted world we are living in these days.
Now. I understand what I wrote is blunt. You are more than likely disgusted with me right now. I am nothing more than another hater cursing your family. I also know there will probably be people coming to you later after they read this letter apologizing to you and telling you that I “don’t represent true Christianity” or that I am a fundamentalist that can be ignored or waving me off in some dismissive fashion. When they do, know that they are liars and do not love you. Contrary to what you may be thinking about me right now after reading this, I do care for you. I am grieved for your situation and indignant that no one has apparently taken the time to outline the truth of the matter to you.
My prayer is that God’s Spirit will break through to the hearts of your family and bring you to salvation. He can do such a miracle. Your son does not have to be enslaved to his fantasy like he is now. That is the reason Christ came to dwell among us. He, being the God-man not only restores our sin broken relationship with God the Father, but He redeems people to live life as God intended to live. Christ can redeem your son as He can redeem everyone in your family. He is a saving God who grants not only eternal life, but deliverance from sin and inordinate affections.