Civil rights movements have dominated the American political and cultural landscape for some time now. Whether it is the struggle that Black Americans have gone through to attain equality or the women’s rights movement, the United States has been a battleground for equality for some time.
One of the most notable of these civil rights movements has been the transgender movement. Their success has been nearly unprecedented in political and cultural history. The rapidity at which they have succeeded at achieving recognition has been remarkable, especially when you consider that movements who represent larger portions of the population have taken much longer to achieve their goals.
There are many reasons for this success, but at least some of the success must be attributed to the key argument utilized by the movement with which they have gained public acceptance. This argument, at its most simple form, says, “I identify as such a thing therefore I am that thing. Furthermore, society should identify me as that thing, too.”
The argument appeals to common decency above all else; it seems only compassionate to accede to such a request. It even appeals to the American ideal of self-determination. If you are convinced that you are of the opposite gender, it seems cruel for society to tell you that you are not.
Yet, there may be a problem with the argument.