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CITIZEN SCIENCE: Social justice warriors

One of the strangest aspects of entering Transworld, as a parent, is the absolute prohibition on not only discussion or analysis, but even thought, on whether it is a good idea to agree with small children and tumultuous teenagers that their gender doesn’t match their body, and that therefore their body and social environment must be changed to fit their inner conception of themselves in a thrilling gender journey. Anything other than celebration is viewed with suspicion, and every parent I have spoken to (plenty) has found that if you probe or apply very ordinary standards of due diligence, the atmosphere in the room suddenly flips to hostile demands, performative displays of credentialism, and even a sort of titillated panic in the face of a genuine challenge.

The room I am referring to is the counselling room, the therapy room, the psychologist’s or psychiatrist’s room – any practitioner of the psychology professions in New Zealand – and the story is always the same.

Because of the cordon sanitaire that our media has placed around discussion of gender identity ideology, most parents only come across it when they are pitched into the middle of it, by either their child coming home from school with a new “identity”, or by that child taking their learning from school to the psychologist that they have been seeing because they are neurodiverse, or miserable or some combination of both. Thanks to the Conversion Practices Prohibition Act, psychologists are now obliged by law to “affirm” (go along with) a person’s chosen gender identity as soon as they declare it, without question, regardless of their age. But most psychologists don’t need to be persuaded – they are enthusiastic cheerleaders liberating our children from heteronormativity.

What bigots we are!

The New Zealand Psychologists’ Board has called for political parties to commit to 1,000 more psychologists this election, to deal with an apparent mental health crisis which they say – “has been steadily increasing driven by a growing awareness of mental health issues, the diversity of educational needs and a reduction in the stigma surrounding seeking help. Further pressures such as the Covid-19 pandemic, increases in the number of unhoused families, job and food insecurity, climate change anxiety, school attendance issues, and drug and alcohol issues have impacted wellbeing for individuals, families, and communities.”

What’s most striking about the above statement is psychologists’ certainty that they are the answer to all this human misery (life). Until very recently, psychologists generally saw their job as helping a client come to terms with their own particular tragedies, and learn to personally thrive in a world that will never become anyone’s utopia, neither yours nor mine. But over the past fifteen years or so there has been an explosion of scope creep into the “context” of our lives – they are going to fix the world and they are certain that they know how.

The Psychologists’ Board has an important regulatory function: to register and ensure the continued fitness and competence of psychologists, and to accredit and monitor educational organisations and courses of studies that deliver professional qualifications. It is not an elected body, Board members are appointed by the Ministry of Health, and are therefore unaccountable to the professionals whose livelihoods they control. Because of its disciplinary power it should be impartial - a dry little mechanism of government. It exists to hold the line.

But its Code of Ethics contains an entire section dedicated to Social Justice with a Value Statement thus: “Psychology functions as a discipline to promote the well being of society…. It is about addressing and challenging unjust societal norms and behaviours that disempower people at all levels of interaction.”

“Psychological knowledge will be increased, and psychology will be practised, in such ways as to promote the welfare of society.”

“Psychologists strive to ensure that psychological knowledge, when used in the development of social structures and policies, will be used for beneficial purposes.”

It’s telling that Social Justice is described by a Value Statement, because that is exactly what it is, a set of values – held by whom? Defined by whom? The Code comes to a screeching halt and leaves these crucial underlying questions unexamined.

It will come as no surprise to readers that the Board’s Best Practice Guideline for Sex, Sexuality and Gender Diverse Clients goes all-in on gender affirmation, with an extraordinary range of grandiose generalisations about “minority stress”, “socio-political context”, and “pre-colonial Māori society”. The guideline is promoted and followed by most other psychology-related bodies in New Zealand including the Psychological Society (membership 2,000) which regularly cheerleads for trans identities. All this while the gender affirming approach is being rejected by governments across Scandinavia and Europe, and much of the United States, where transgenderism has been weaponised by both sides in their vicious culture war – but only one side is poisoning and mutilating children and teenagers.

One of the most influential voices against the ideology is an American Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and gender expert Dr Stephen Levine. He was asked why psychologists are using the gender affirming model so enthusiastically.

“It is … a politically correct “liberal” thing to do to add to the growing sense that this is the new civil rights issue I can be part of by being supportive. …[But] social movements are not infallible. Trans medicalisation may one day be viewed as a therapeutic medical misadventure just as the false memory syndrome and brain surgery [lobotomies] for depression has been. It might ultimately clue the profession and the public [into] how unscientific and irresponsible and unethical professions can prove to be.”

“Most adolescents undergo psychological strains and stresses that are only partially understandable to them. It may be possible that some adolescents who declare a trans identity are responding to ordinary developmental angst in an extraordinary manner. Some may be attracted to the cause of improving the world through expanding notions of gender.”

When the therapeutic relationship moves from responding to a client’s individual circumstances, to one where the psychologist and client are allies against social injustice, it has fundamentally changed its purpose and been pressed into the service of a subjectively defined greater good. Jordan Peterson, clinical psychologist and bête noir of the liberal left recently said, “…psychology is not, in its essence, a political endeavour. It is an individual to individual endeavour. As soon as it becomes political, it just dies.”

The sex binary is not a structure of hierarchical oppression, it is the simple building block of human reproduction. And families aren’t either, for the most part they are just ordinary people doing their best with varying results in an uncertain world. But New Zealand parents who will not affirm are finding that psychologists are regretfully informing their young clients that at some point – as soon as they can in fact – they will need to cut their toxic families out of their lives, exposing vulnerable young people to the many strangers who want to “help” them, and some who very much don’t, creating plenty more clients for psychologists, who have taken it upon themselves to raise our young because we’re all so useless at it. This is now supported by our health system which defines any adherence to material reality as transphobia, and forces parents to either collude in a dangerous lie, or be cut out of their children’s treatment pathway and later their lives.

We don’t need a thousand more psychologists, we need an independent inquiry into gender affirming healthcare and serious reform of the psychology professions.

Resources for parents:

Citizen Science is a pseudonym

3,356 views90 comments


Liz M Lambert
Liz M Lambert
Sep 13, 2023

Fabulously written ! Send to the parents of all your grandchildren


remember when shoving spreaders in your ear lobes was cool. The bigger the spreader the cooler and edgeir you were. Putting studs in your cheeks and horn stumps in your forehead and nose spreaders, all kinds of shit. A generation of young idiots who knew better. Have you seen the now 30 year olds who moved out of the “hey look at me” phase and now want to live a “grown up life”. Flapping earlobes and patched up faces where holes used to be. Imagine when this current generation wake up. How much trauma and regret will they have? and where will the people who were whispering in their ears be?


Sep 09, 2023

These psycho cretins need to be kicked up their arses until they scream in unison "There are only two sexes and only two genders and they have XX or XY chromosomes"


Hell, what is normal anymore, the mere fact that I am a white man who enjoys having sex with my female partner, kind of makes me an old fashioned weirdo, if that is the case, then I am happy to be an old weirdo, in saying that, there are people out there who are wired differently to us old weirdo's, the real problem is that it seems to be the new trend, and sold as a life style choice, that is fine if you are old enough to understand that there is no turning back, once one has been cut up, the real problem is when young dumb children get screwed into this freakish stuff, one has only to see…


Don't buy into the Woke gender bullshit, you can't have reasonable debate with stupid people, they've had too many years of practice.

There are two genders, male and female, no matter what the dumb bastards proclaim.

Replying to

Two sexes. Conflating “sex” and “gender” is part of the problem.

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