By John F. Di Leo | Illinois Review
We could begin by looking at this from the perspective of political philosophy.
In the early 1790s, when our Constitutional government was in its infancy, Secretary Hamilton proposed a national bank that we definitely needed, but which was not specifically authorized by the Constitution. A decade later, President Jefferson’s delegates to France brought back an irresistible offer – to purchase a third of a continent from France for pennies an acre – which just as clearly lacked Constitutional authorization.
In both instances, the opposing party said “You can’t do that without an Amendment! You’ll regret setting the precedent!” But they couldn’t resist, and they didn’t think they could wait for an amendment, so the precedents were set.
Or we could look at it from the perspective of a personal relationship.
We have all had some partner – a friend, a lover, a parent, a child – who has pushed us a bit in one way or another, or whom we have pushed. We capitulate once, in a small thing, then again, in something larger, because we capitulated before, and it’s just a matter of scale, after all.
Before you know it, the precedent has shattered the ceiling, or the wall, or the lock, and needed discipline is gone in that relationship. The child acts out worse, not better, for having been given the license to do so… or the lover drinks more, or smokes more, or abuses more, or otherwise misbehaves more. A small license grows to become a greater license, to the detriment of all.
Palatine Makes the News
Palatine, Illinois is a reasonably ordinary Chicago suburb, with a reasonably ordinary school district. Larger than most – the five high schools in its district have thousands of kids each – but otherwise typical, with good students and bad ones, with athletes and preps, insiders and outsiders, all struggling to get through their teen years and make it to adulthood.
Quietly, without much if any notice, a new concept arose in the teen culture: a new modern definition of the word “transgender.”
Those of us of a certain age remember a distinction, though we never knew anyone who fit into either group: “Transvestite” meant that you dressed like the opposite sex; “Transgender” meant that you went to Sweden for the operations to “become” the opposite sex. We all knew that the DNA doesn’t change – that a boy is still a boy, and a girl is still a girl, no matter what the blade and plastic wrought. But we knew it happened “somewhere out there” – occasionally – and we were glad we knew no one so troubled.
But in recent years – very recent, I think – the knife and plastic were dismissed as unnecessary, and a movement began to allow people to “identify” as other than they really are. A boy could say he “identifies” as a girl, or a girl could say she “identifies” as a boy, and their peers will treat them as the other, just on their word, without a second thought.
This should have shocked and worried us all, but we are suburbanites; we don’t like to talk about such things, so we accept it in the interest of being inoffensive to the poor troubled kid. “You have to call her ‘her,’ Dad… she identifies as a girl.” Huh? We close our eyes to it; try not to think about it. When did this happen?
Well, quietly, under the radar, it’s been happening all around us. The schools have one, or two, then three, then four kids in this situation. Instead of giving them the help they need – not a surgeon but a therapist, not injections but intervention – the schools have bent over backward to accommodate the delusion.
The schools allowed them to use the other sex’s bathrooms, if there was a private stall. Then they allowed them to use the other sex’s locker room, as long as it was unoccupied while they used it.
They allowed them to have the privacy that every other high school kid is denied in sports or after gym class, because they’re troubled. But we don’t say it’s because they’re troubled; we say it’s because we understand, and we accept it. And we’re the ones asking for trouble, by seeking to avoid it.
Then the schools allowed them to join the other sex’s sports teams.
A boy on the girls’ volleyball team? Sure, he “identifies” as a girl. A girl on the boy’s basketball team? Why not – she “identifies” as a boy.
The district capitulated on everything – they were so accommodating, it’s incredible – and they drew only one line in the sand: the district would never allow these confused kids to shower with the other sex. It’s an important line – it should never have gotten to this point, but give credit where credit is due; it is good that the district is sticking to their guns on this one at least. No matter what a warped family or troublesome lawyer or troubled child might request, the district will not allow a boy to enter a shower full of girls just because he thinks of himself as one of them.
And so, now we find ourselves where we are today. The federal Department of Education has decreed that Palatine District 211 must allow this 17-year-old boy to shower with twenty 17-year-old girls, because he thinks of himself as one of them.
The path taken by this particular child wasn’t the normal one. The case moved through the federal Department of Education, as a Title IX case. The complainant used a creative approach – just claim that any refusal to fully accept the child’s delusion that he’s a girl constitutes discrimination, and therefore merits a denial of federal Title IX funding for the district.
The process moved through the federal bureaucracy, and on November 2, 2015, the district announced that the federal Department of Education had, amazingly, sided with the complainant and given the district thirty days to play ball, or the feds will utilize all the power it has at its disposal to force the issue.
District 211 promptly said No, and the superintendent confirmed that the district would continue to recognize its moral obligation to the twenty other girls in that shower, however happy the feds may be to throw them under the bus.
How strong a case they can make for this, after all these accommodations and capitulations, is a question. They have set their own foolish precedents, time and time again; how can we be surprised that the barbarians at the gate continued to press on?
The federal government has no right to give such an order. No right, no duty, no legal authority, to force a district to make its girls tolerate a boy in the shower with them. But they have issued the order. They have the power to write checks, and they can threaten to suspend those checks if they aren’t satisfied.
We must satisfy the government, whatever their overreach, because we are conditioned to believe that we can’t survive without that federal money. Take the king’s shilling, as the saying goes, and you must dance to the king’s tune.
The Department of Education
The federal government has claimed a role in regulating education for a century now. First as part of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, then on its own as the spun off independent Department of Education, there is a cabinet role practically equal to the federal obligations for Defense protecting our borders and Treasury paying our bills.
And what good has it done?
The Department of Education entered the world of athletics, mandating all sorts of feigned equality, issuing grants for programs and using those grants to encourage sports they like, however unpopular, and harass sports they dislike, however popular.
The Department of Education entered the world of higher education funding, with a mixture of grants and loans that grows exponentially, ensuring the tuition increases that have plagued our universities for generations. When you set prices for a product, you charge what the market will bear, right? So what do you do when the government ensures it will help pay whatever is charged? You increase, again and again. The Department of Education has in fact created and encouraged the crippling rate of increase in college tuition from which every student and parent suffers.
The Department of Education entered the world of legislation, proposing bills and pushing them in the federal legislature, and lobbying states and localities to adopt their creations. Surely the Constitution never anticipated such apartisan lobbying function in the executive branch!
The Department of Education entered the world of education redesign, offering a plethora of grants for colleges to take up for study, or for individual students to research on their own. Their grants fund projects about diversity and discrimination and workforce transformation and parental roles… projects that change our society, bit by bit. And we pay for them without even knowing it.
Most such functions go on in the background, under the radar… but at most USA colleges and universities, you will find federally funded programs such as these, bubbling up from the education school and around other sectors as well, gradually reengineering the way America teaches, the way America raises our children, the way America punishes and rewards the behavior of our citizens. All funded by tax dollars, all managed by the bureaucracy of Washington DC.
This latest overreach should be no surprise. From an administration that calls for a return to the discredited feminist causes of the 70s like the ERA and “comparable worth,” it should be no shock that the administration would favor such a position as forcing twenty girls to shower with a boy to make the boy feel happier, regardless of how much the girls will suffer. They’re normal; this government isn’t interested in them.
What Are We To Do About It?
The question of the hour, in Palatine, is obvious. What shall be our response?
The Superintendent has rightly recognized that his district will not stand for further capitulation; this is a hill to fight on, not flee from. So the next step may be to see how the feds choose to fight. Being rejected can’t make these petty dictators happy; they are sure to do something. Withhold federal funds? File suits in the courts? Pull accreditations or permits? Punish the schools’ graduates through loan and grant applications?
As we have allowed the government a chance to grow, we have given it many a tool to use to enslave us, when it chooses to use them.
Some parents talk of pulling their kids out of the district if the district capitulates. Since funding dollars follow the enrollment numbers, this should turn the teachers away from the feds’ position… the teachers already oppose it, of course, truth be told, but their unions are harder to sway. From coast to coast, teachers unions and federal bureaucracies are joined at the hip.
Some parents talk of just pulling their kids out of athletic programs; if the kids don’t have gym and don’t have sports teams, then there’s no showering to be done. It would do the trick, but we would be punishing the good kids – particularly those counting on their sports to get them scholarships for college. And why should we punish the good kids, all because one troubled teen and his leviathan-loving parent have chosen to attack our society?
In the end, it is clear what we must do. Not capitulate to the federal government in allowing the further decline of our society. Not punish the good kids for the crime of one parent. Not allow this child’s parent to hold a school district hostage another day.
No, what we must do is simple:
We Must Say No.
We must say No to the idea that capitulating on small stupid things will get us out of bigger ones later; it doesn’t work. As Machiavelli said, every change includes a foothold for the next step in further change; it is never final.
We must say No to the idea that one troubled child should be addressed by making everyone else suffer. If a student needs therapy, offer it. The district employs psychologists and psychologists; if a child isn’t comfortable in his own skin, help him.
We must say No to the denial of reality. For decades, the modern American Left has sought to convince the nation that every societal issue is caused by some basic norm, and that rejecting the norm in favor of some new deviancy is the only solution. They imagine that the CO2 we exhale is a destructive poison, that the cars we drive are causing hurricanes, that people are routinely born into the wrong bodies, so whites can be black and boys can be girls and the old can be young, just by endorsing their whims. Denial of reality is never a societal good. All advances must begin with the truth.
We must say No to this specific order. Any federal employee who comes into Illinois and attempts to force boys to shower with girls should be immediately arrested and prosecuted for child abuse. Our country locks up deviants in the schools all the time for such offenses; this is no different. Let’s fill the Palatine police station with Department of Education bureaucrats and send them down to the Cook County sex crimes ward, and see how the sickos like having that on their permanent record.
And finally, we must recognize who is at the heart of these deranged ideas. Who appoints the bureaucrats who do such things, who give such orders, who attempt to foist such societal destruction on our Judeo-Christian nation? Only the modern Democratic Party, the official party of deviancy and corruption, the party that booed God’s name at their national convention, the party that ranks taxpayer funding of unrestricted abortion above our nation’s defense or our allies’ security.
We must say No to the election of Democrats, ever again.
Republicans aren’t perfect, Heaven knows… but only the Democrats could dream up the idea of forcing a local district to make its high school girls shower with a confused boy. Every day, the Democrats prove that they cannot be trusted with political power; from Springfield to Washington, they leave nothing but destruction in their wake.
Copyright 2015 John F. Di Leo
John F Di Leo is a Chicago based international trade compliance trainer. His columns appear regularly in Illinois Review.
SOURCE: ILLINOIS REVIEW
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