@DarrenWalker Less gender conforming surgery would be a good thing. Pre surgery attempted suicide rates are an astounding 40%, dropping only to 34% post surgery.
We can do better.
@Groucho: In general, I agree with anyone who says "We can do better."
There is a link between genitals and behaviour ; because testicles release testosterone, which makes certain behaviours more "pleasurable" and hence repetition more sought after. Men tend to have more "extreme" behaviours, because most women simply don't get any joy out of it.
In a hunter-gatherer society, it made sense to have : risk-taking violent people to go after the food, and cautious caring people to look after the young. The former need better binocular vision, the latter need better peripheral vision. The former needs to sleep deeply to be rested for a sustained foray, the latter needs to be woken easily by the sound of danger.
If one half carries the young ( rather than quickly laying an egg ), and lactates ; those roles are defined.
I'm not saying that's how it should be. In colonies of bees, the workers are sterile females, with just a few males to fertilise the queen.
Modern human society has the potential to allow us to be all we can be, we don't all need to be always above a minimum ability in many fields.
And, in this time of overpopulation risk, I hope we can value ( and hence be emotionally supportive of ) those who for whatever reason don't contribute to society with numbers of offspring, but by making the society better.
I do fear that part of the psychological difficultly for trans ( and gay ) people, is that they cannot easily and naturally follow the "X + Y = offspring" formula. Same for those who have lost children, or babies ; or cannot have them for anatomical, or medical, or psychological reasons. They feel un-human.
In "The Imitation Game" an officer says of a dead soldier "I hope he didn't have a family", suggesting that would have made his loss more tragic.
As others have said, everyone can make a contribution to society, and being valued, is what makes us want to keep going ; either to better ourselves, or to simply not end our lives early.
I don't mind people being unhappy when "X + Y = offspring" doesn't work for them ; but I want them to know that society will accept them anyway, they don't need to try to conform. They are as human as the rest of us, and we mourn their loss equally.
@geoff1000 says there's a link between genitals and behavior: testicles release testosterone (a hormone that affects behavior).
Testosterone is produced by the gonads—by the Leydig cells in testes in folks with testes, and by the ovaries in folks with ovaries. It's also produced in smaller amounts by the adrenal glands (in everybody). Higher levels of testosterone in the womb during fetal development lead to the development of things like testes and penises.
In short: hormones influence behavior and the development of genitals. There is indeed a link between genitals and behavior—that link is called "hormones." I blame the fact that I once jumped off a roof just because I thought it'd be awesome* on my hormone levels, not on the parts of my body that produce them (which parts I wouldn't even have if it weren't for hormones, anyway).
*It was, but it was also kind of painful because I didn't know how to land properly when jumping from that high.
...As far as the idea that reproduction is the be-all and end-all, such that people who aren't straight (or who are straight, but can't have babies for some reason) "feel un-human"—well, I question that. Humans are far from the only species that has non-straight members: it's a natural adaptation. I admit that I do feel inhuman pretty often, but not because I'm ace.
I'm glad you are happy to not be contributing to overpopulation. Others do feel it is a compulsion.
In a bad moment near the end of "Return of the King", a character says, "We can no longer achieve victory by force of arms" to which another replies, "No, but we can give Frodo a chance".
When Apollo 11 made it to the Moon, about 99 % of the rocket and 99.99 % of NASA didn't. Not for nothing do the Oscars recognise "Best Actor in a Supporting Role".
@DarrenWalker You are not "inhuman"
You are an important part of this community.
You are an important part of your family.
You are an Important part of Colorado.
You are an important part of America.
You are an important part of Creation.
You are loved and valued by many, including me.
@Groucho i’d offer that nature only creates perfection. Our idealizing recognizes flaws and the corrections we trying to make are only to changing things to our ideals.
I know many lives have been saved or lengthened by science, medicine or technology but at what cost? Over crowding? Environmental destruction? New a diseases? Famine and drought?
Remember nature creates life of Kinds.
What do you make of :
Perfection? [Your first point]
Is your second point that there should be No gender conforming surgery?
Personally, @Groucho, I have a hard time seeing how some of the physical and/or mental characteristics some folks get born with could ever be helpful from an evolutionary standpoint. But then I'm not the "god of evolution," so I don't know. Maybe these, eh... mutations? ...will help their owners survive at some point. If something in the environment changes. I'm not Nature; I couldn't say.
Perfection is context-dependent. Perfect for what?
Also, re: @BashfulLoner, it doesn't seem to me that we shouldn't do what comes naturally, and pursue what we think is best. But we should definitely be aware that that's what we're doing: pursuing a subjective ideal which we may or may not regret later.
@snuggleme123: I don't know how to respond, because A non-human animals are also important to their families (human and non-human... and to their communities, and to the earth, and so on), and B not being human isn't always bad.
So I don't know how to respond to your kindness, but I wanted to let you know that I do appreciate it... in my own weird way.
Dude, many non human animals run in fear of family and if they survived that, their largest contribution to the community is filling the tummy of the neighborhood bully. In between all of that they fart and crap with no thought to their carbon footprint. And whereas a bear will raid a fridge, it will not read while lounging on top of one.
@snuggleme123: Heheheh. Okay, I give.
@Groucho who knows what mysteries lie beneath schizophrenia, we just view it as an oddity. I could be the cure for the human virus. All the others you named, we can’t know either the purpose of those beings. An infant with no limbs may have taught us the secret of telepathy. Hemofiliacs may have taught us how to relieve ourselves of blood shortages. All I’m saying is we don’t know the cost of what we think we are fixing.
Relate it to time travel, whatever we change as ripple effects that we couldn’t possibly imagine. But what we do know is nature has balance, nature has has a plan. Perfection is the Devine order, everything we do is an interruption to the inevitable.
Sickle cell disease is caused by having 2 copies of a particular gene, which is bad ; but having 1 copy gives protection against malaria, which is good.
Many genetic problems are caused by having too much of a particular desirable characteristic.
Evolution is caused by mutation and natural selection, but what is "good" depends on the target design, and that depends on where one is on the evolutionary tree.
Snakes are limbless reptiles that evolved venom, letting them adopt a niche. Rattlesnakes have thermal imaging. Bats developed echolocation from living in the dark.
Society works, because it accommodates those who can't function alone. Only a queen termite can lay eggs, but it can't feed itself.
It also accomodates those who temporarily can't function alone. Care after childbirth allows humans to be born with a disproportionately large head and hence brain, and incapable of walking for the first year.
Evolution can only walk with very small steps, and it doesn't know where it's going. A society, however, can know.
War is bad, but it drives developments that might never have otherwise occurred. If one day, we need to and can, deflect an extinction-level asteroid ; it will be by using the skills we developed, while trying so hard, to kill so many of each other.
I just hope we make it that far.