Transgender people are people who have a gender identity different from their sex.
The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor E. Adeboye has publicly declared his stand on transgenderism. He did this in his Facebook post where he based his opinion on biblical scriptures citing different passages. He asserted that God is not an author of confusion but the God of distinction and that he created humans male and female. Based on his public declaration, conversations have emerged about the concept and acceptance of transgenderism in Nigeria.
Transgender people are people who have a gender identity different from their sex. They feel that their sex does not match their identity hence, their decision to transit. Not all transit biologically. Some embrace their transgender identity while maintaining their sex; as a result, different terms have been associated with the idea of transgender. Terms like: Gender fluidity meaning the decision to identify as a particular gender at some point and a different gender at some other point; Non-binary, an umbrella term for gender identities that are neither male nor female; Gender-nonconforming- the behaviour or appearance that does not conform to prevailing social and cultural expectation appropriate to a particular gender. There has also been an argument to spell the word ‘woman’ as ‘womxn’ replacing the ‘a’ with the letter ‘x’ as a form of inclusion for transgender people.
Proponents of transgenderism assert that every human has the right to choose a gender identity for themselves and not be restricted to their sex. They argue that one could feel an identity different from one’s sex and as such, should be allowed the freedom to transition at their will. This means that a person who has male/female genitals but feels otherwise is free to transition to the identity of their choice and should be respected, accepted, and supported by society. They also, speak on how transgender people should be fully supported by society as they are vulnerable.
Proponents of transgenderism assert that every human has the right to choose a gender identity for themselves and not be restricted to their sex.
But in a country like Nigeria, it seems like an idea that might take decades to gain acceptance. Being a country with deep-rooted religious and cultural beliefs, most of the debates against transgenderism has been about God creating humans as male or female and how the idea of transgenderism as a demonic or perverse one; however, a question centred on the existence of hermaphrodites could stand in the way of such beliefs- ‘Considering their biological sex state, are they allowed to decide a gender identity for themselves or choose to become non-binary?’
On the other hand, a question for the proponents would be “at what point should the line be drawn when it comes to humans’ right to freedom to maintain orderliness in the society?
♦ Favour Chiagozie Ebubechukwu is an Editorial Staff Writer and columnist with the WAP
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