Gender Identity: LGBT Groups Slam Pope Francis For Saying Teaching Gender Choice To Kids Is 'Terrible'
LGBT groups are crying foul over Pope Francis' declaration that children shouldn't be taught that they can choose their gender. The pontiff also supposedly stated that what is going on in schools today, with regards gender identity, is a reflection of what the pope before him, Pope Benedict XVI, described as an "the epoch of sin against God the Creator."
Pope Francis apparently expressed this concern during a closed-door meeting with bishops in Poland on Wednesday, Aug. 3, per CNN. "Today, in schools they are teaching this to children -- to children! -- that everyone can choose their gender," the pope told the bishops.
He cited that there are people and institutions who have the money to fund and distribute textbooks and materials on gender identity to the kids. These supposedly come from "influential countries" with "ideological colonization," and the pope deplored the situation as "terrible."
LGBT activist and transgender Sarah McBride found the pope's statement to be a disappointment, especially when it came from the man who professed love and acceptance. She posted her comment on Twitter and other LGBT activists have chimed in as well.
The Pope's comments about trans folks are incredibly disappointing and betray the larger message of love and inclusion that he preaches.
— Sarah McBride (@SarahEMcBride) August 3, 2016
Marianne Duddy-Burke of DignityUSA, which is a Catholic LGBT group, said that the pope's comment demonstrated "ignorance of the subject," via Washington Blade. "He is also failing to see that God speaks through many languages, cultures, and human experiences, and not always in ways that we have the skills to interpret correctly."
Francis DeBernardo of the New Ways Ministry, another Catholic LGBT group, also noted that officials of the Catholic church must "educate themselves" on LGBT experiences and issues, per the CNN report. DeBernardo stressed that gender identity is not chosen, contrary to what the pope said. "They [referring to kids] discover it."