Actress Ellen Page, who was best known for her performance in Juno, came out last December as transgender and now goes by the name Elliot. This week, Page is currently on the cover of Time Magazine sharing about the experience. As an actress, Page is one of the most prominent individuals to publicly identify as transgender, potentially influencing thousands of young people to do the same.
“I felt like a boy,” Page said to Time. “I wanted to be a boy. I would ask my mom if I could be someday.”
But Page claims that wasn’t possible. After her first initial break in Hollywood at a young age in Canada, Page became a “professional actor” and felt the need “to look a certain way.”
That’s no longer the case.
In a December, Page wrote on Instagram, “Hi friends, I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot. I feel lucky writing this. To be here. To have arrived at this place in my life… I’ve been endlessly inspired by so many in the trans community. Thank you for your courage, your generosity and ceaselessly working to make this world a more inclusive and compassionate place. I will offer whatever support I can and continue to strive for a more loving and equal society.”
Page made this statement while recovering from what’s called “top surgery,” where physicians essentially perform a double mastectomy, removing perfectly health breast tissue. Usually, a procedure like this would only be performed for women who have the BRCA gene mutation, which is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.
According to Time, “Like many trans people, Page emphasizes being trans isn’t all about surgery. For some people, it’s unnecessary. For others, it’s unaffordable. For the wider world, the media’s focus on it has sensationalized transgender bodies, inviting invasive and inappropriate questions. But Page describes surgery as something that, for him, has made it possible to finally recognize himself when he looks in the mirror, providing catharsis he’s been waiting for since the ‘total hell’ of puberty.”
However, perhaps the most interesting anecdote is from later in the piece.
The author wrote, “Human identity is complicated and mysterious, but politics insists on fitting everything into boxes. In today’s culture wars, simplistic beliefs about gender—e.g., chromosomes = destiny—are so widespread and so deep-seated that many people who hold those beliefs don’t feel compelled to consider whether they might be incomplete or prejudiced.”
That conclusion ignores biological realities.
There are only two sexes, male and female. This is true in the animal kingdom and is true for humankind as well. The claim by individuals and gender ideologues that there are seven or 64 or an infinite number of genders has no basis in biological reality. And the idea that someone can transition from one sex to the other also has no basis in biology. Every cell in Page’s body remains XX – female, regardless of hormones and surgeries to look male.
But these lies have invaded society and have resulted in many young people struggling with their bodily realities. This is especially true for young women.
In response to the 2019 version of the Equality Act, the Heritage Foundation argued that the number of girls who seek out transitioning is an “epidemic.” For example, in the United Kingdom the number of girls interested in transitioning recently grew by 4,000 percent and triggered an investigation by the authorities.
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey showed that 2% of high school students identify as transgender – a huge increase in a short period of time. Sadly, many of these students reported struggling with “substance use, suicide risk and being victims of violence, and, although more likely to report some sexual risk behaviors, they were also more likely to be tested for HIV infection.”
A prominent and very public individual like Ellen Page sharing a transition story will likely encourage other young people, especially young women, to embrace transgenderism, despite the risks from puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries. It’s a situation that should deeply concern parents across the country.
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Photo from Wynne Neilly for TIME