Teaching gender identity? Not so fast, says the Pope!
After speaking with a French father about his son who read about gender identity in a school textbook and subsequently wanted to become a girl, Pope Francis expressed serious concerns about teaching children about gender identity.
The Pope explained that: “This is against nature. It is one thing when someone has this tendency… and it is another matter to teach this in school. To change the mentality — I call this ideological colonization…”
And while Pope Francis has been supportive of some more progressive causes (relatively speaking, of course), his latest comments should not come as a surprise. In fact, just a few months ago, the Pope first commented on teaching gender identity by saying: “Today, in schools they are teaching this to children — to children! — that everyone can choose their gender.” The Pope continued: “persons and institutions who donate money” are responsible for pushing this “ideological colonization, supported by very influential countries. This is terrible.”
This year’s comments come as a major disappointment to many supporters of LGBT equality who had high hopes for Pope Francis; especially after he said, just a few years ago, that “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”
Hopefully the Catholic Church and its leadership will further examine this issue and understand that there is no crusade by wealthy liberal intelligentsia to indoctrinate children through school textbooks. It is a sensitive topic for sure, but we hope the church will give some more thought to how it characterizes teaching gender identity.