Fox News Guest: Being A Transgender Kid Is The Same As Pretending To Be A Dog

During a “Trouble With Schools” segment on Wednesday’s edition of Fox & Friends, host Elisabeth Hasselbeck was joined by Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce, who argued that a school’s lesson to students about tolerance was wrong because being transgender made as much sense to children as thinking they were a “cocker spaniel.”

Hasselbeck told her audience that students in grades K-3 at Mitchell Primary School in Kittery, Maine were read the book I Am Jazz, a story about a young transgender child “with a boy’s body but a girl’s brain,” and was “a plan or an indoctrination on the part of the school to get to kids first.”

ThinkProgress notes:

The book had been promoted by the school’s guidance counselor, Dana Richerich, in a blog post back in February. She pointed out that the Maine Supreme Court’s decision last year guaranteeing transgender students recognition in schools “highlighted the need for ALL of us — staff, students, parents, community — to learn more.”

“This is about conditioning, and not just of the children, but of the parents as well,” Bruce said. “The implication here is that if you are left to your own devices as a parent, something will go wrong, that they have to intervene. That of course, has got to be rejected.”

“It’s insane to say that somebody has a boy’s body and a girl’s brain. What’s a girl’s brain?” Bruce added, “There was a point when I was a child I thought I was a cocker spaniel,” comparing being transgender to any number of childhood fantasies.

Watch the segment below:

Think Progress adds:

Neither Bruce or Lipkins accurately represents the experience of transgender children, who can begin to understand their gender as early as age 2 and who identify as completely with that gender as their cisgender peers. Furthermore, allowing them to identify with that gender improves their mental health, relieving depression and anxiety.

Perhaps the most ironic problem with how Fox News has framed this story is the fact that Jazz Jennings is a real transgender teenager. The book is based on her experience growing up trans, including the fact that she was aware of her gender years before even arriving in Kindergarten, and is designed specifically to help affirm other kids in the same situation.

While one mom was worried that her son might be transgender, another parent was grateful that the school incorporated I Am Jazz. A parent of a transgender child in the Horace Mitchell School system wrote, “People in this country, parents in this country are outraged by bullying, teen suicide rates and the depression in children. The staff of Mitchell School is doing something about this.” He added, “LGBTQ issues should never be classified as a ‘sensitive subject’ — there is nothing sensitive about the way we are born. Blonde hair, brown hair, gay, straight or somewhere in-between, we are all people and we all need acceptance.”