Saturday, September 30, 2017 by Frances Bloomfield
This year is set to become the year where feelings take precedence over facts. Bath Spa University has drawn in a fair bit of attention over its decision to reject a proposal from one of its researchers, a psychotherapist named James Caspian. Apparently, performing a study on regret-driven, reverse-gender assignment surgery was a bit too much for the university to handle, and might even blemish its reputation on social media.
“The fundamental reason given was that it might cause criticism of the research on social media and criticism of the research would be criticism of the university and they also added it was better not to offend people,” Caspian explained.
Yes, you read that right. Bath Spa University did indeed just dismiss a study proposal on “detransitioning” because it could potentially hurt feelings.
Never mind that Caspian fought for his case in a reasonable fashion, arguing that the research was more needed than ever due to the increasing population of people who were regretting, and were even traumatized, by their surgery. Never mind that Caspian himself spoke with a genital reconstructive surgeon who had carried out seven reversals in one year alone.
Caspian even noted how getting people to talk openly about their experiences proved to be difficult, though this only made him more determined to carry out the study. He made it a point to include individuals who had transitioned to men then returned to living as women without going under the knife again.
But of course, Bath Spa University torpedoed Caspian’s proposal without a second thought. The university has also declined to comment on any and all queries about the matter until the internal investigations have concluded.
On his research possibly harming transgender people who fought tooth and nail for their right to surgery, Caspian simply said that new research was necessary. He elaborated to the Independent.co.uk: “The whole field has completely changed over the last few years and the idea that we might use the information from the research we are going to do in a way that won’t help people is completely wrong.”
And Caspian isn’t wrong in that regard either. Just look at Walt Heyer, the Los Angeles man who became a woman in the 1980s then went back to living as a man after gender reassignment surgery impacted his life in a tremendously negative way. To this day, Heyer wishes he’d never gotten surgery in the first place, and doing so has robbed him of pieces of himself that he’ll never get back.
Caspian’s work has the potential to help individuals look at this life-altering surgery in a more objective manner, and ultimately guide them towards the decision that they think is best for them. (Related: Transgenderism is a disorder stemming from psychological trauma, says man who had TWO sex changes.)
But this kind of scientific inquiry is simply too politically incorrect and therefore unfit for further study. Bath Spa University may not realize it, but it’s setting up a dangerous precedent for all other academic institutions.
What’s stopping these supposed bastions of knowledge from tossing all research proposals in the trash — no matter how groundbreaking or beneficial they may be — just because their content is a bit off color? Is a few scornful words from overly sensitive individuals worth giving the thumbs down to research that’s being backed by good science?
The truth can hurt, but if it’s a truth that will support the greater good, then it’s an intellectual endeavor that deserves to be worked on and refined.
Visit Gender.news to read stories that are similar in nature to this one.