FAIR News: Taking a Stand on Gender Activism in Schools
Dear friends of FAIR,
It’s hard to see the news these days and not conclude that a portion of the country has lost its way when it comes to children who don’t conform with gender stereotypes. Whether it be the exponential growth in “gender affirming mastectomies” for adolescents, or the now widespread practice of teaching young children that sex is on a “spectrum” using “the Genderbread person,” everywhere we look it seems like our kids are at risk of being caught up and medicalized in what has all the hallmarks of a social contagion. This can leave us with a fatalistic mindset about the state of our society and our prospects for improving it.
This week, I would like to share three reasons why I am optimistic about the future and our ability to move forward in a constructive way on these and other issues.
First, while some states and school districts across the country have adopted policies instructing or encouraging schools to hide a student’s gender transition from their own parents, Virginia recently released new proposed guidelines that reaffirm the role of parents under the 14th Amendment in determining how to address their child’s gender dysphoria. Last week, FAIR submitted a comment in support of Virginia’s proposed guidelines.
Second, many countries outside the United States are now realizing the harms of the currently popular “affirmative” approach to caring for children with gender dysphoria. Following the lead of other European countries such as Sweden and France, the United Kingdom’s National Health Service announced this week that it will no longer rely on the “affirmative model…that originated in the USA” due to the lack of evidence about its effectiveness, and concern about the long term effects of medical interventions like puberty blockers. As Jesse Singal, a journalist who has extensively covered these issues, observed:
...every country that has engaged in a careful review of the evidence has subsequently changed its policies on youth gender medicine in a more conservative direction.
Third, FAIR is standing up for constitutionally-protected individual civil rights and liberties, and has written letters to multiple states and school districts (including California, Oregon, Rhode Island, and SAU 70 in New Hampshire) that adopted policies of hiding students’ gender transition from their parents, storing transgender students’ name and sex in “unofficial” records to keep them beyond the reach of parents and FERPA, and considering a refusal to use others’ preferred pronouns a form of punishable harassment.
FAIR’s pro-human approach is to treat each child as a unique and intrinsically valuable individual, and to encourage a healthy partnership between educators, students, and parents. That partnership is not honored when schools adopt policies that systematically deny parents their fundamental right to participate in decisions about their own children. Efforts to encourage respect for others in the classroom should not restrict, or compel, speech.
Increasingly, medical experts and leaders are coming to recognize how harmful it is to craft policies affecting children based on the preferences of a small group of committed activists. While it can be discouraging to see what is happening in many schools and communities across the country, I do believe the tide has turned, and compassionate common sense is gaining momentum.
FAIR Fundraising Events: Los Angeles, San Francisco, NYC
Join us in Los Angeles on November 10th, San Francisco on November 12th, and New York City on November 15th for three FAIR fundraising events of music, cocktails, and conversation with FAIR Advisors, Fellows, members, and others in your community!
Help support the pro-human movement—purchase your tickets today!
Live Screenings of The UnRedacted (Jihad Rehab)
Calling all FAIR friends in and around Glendale, California! You will now have the opportunity to view Meg Smaker’s film The UnRedacted (formerly Jihad Rehab) at LAEMMLE in Glendale beginning Friday, October 28th!
To check screening times and purchase tickets, visit LAEMMLE’s website. To support Meg and find out when the film will be screened near you, be sure to visit jihadrehab.com, donate to Meg’s GoFundMe, and sign up for alerts.
With your support, FAIR funded the Glendale screening event, and is proud to stand behind Meg Smaker, her beautiful and compassionate film, and free expression in the arts. To learn more about FAIR’s work in this area, visit FAIRintheArts.org.
Want to help advance civil rights and liberties for all, and promote a common culture based on fairness, understanding, and humanity? Sign up for a free subscription today!
How to Be FAIR Without Starting a Fight Virtual Training
Do you want to share the message of FAIR with others but feel intimidated it may start a fight?
There is a better way: Empower yourself with the knowledge and skills to have better conversations, share the message of FAIR, and not start a fight.
Register FREE for this live, virtual training. Our next date is November 9th at 6:00 p.m. ET.
This training is interactive and invites your full participation. Come ready to engage with the facilitator and your fellow FAIR members!
FAIR Book Club: Ian Rowe’s Agency
FAIR’s Book Club meets monthly with a goal to read books that challenge and deepen our understanding of humanity and fairness, while enriching our sense of what it means to be pro-human.
The FAIR in Education Fellows invite you to our next book club meeting on November 30th, where FAIR Advisor Ian Rowe will join us to discuss his book, Agency: The Four Point Plan (F.R.E.E.) for All Children to Overcome the Victimhood Narrative and Discover Their Pathway to Power.
We hope you will join us as we dig into the sage wisdom and advice offered in this phenomenal book.
Eugenics: The Curse That Keeps on Cursing Webinar with FAIR in Medicine
Join FAIR in Medicine TONIGHT, October 27th at 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. ET for our webinar, Eugenics: The Curse That Keeps on Cursing, to hear how the timeless desire to “improve” the human race is still with us. The often-sordid history of eugenics in the United States was explored in the 2016 PBS documentary The Eugenics Crusade: What’s Wrong with Perfect?
After registering for the webinar, you will receive a link to access this documentary. You can find this link in your ticket confirmation email. We encourage attendees to watch it in anticipation of the webinar.
FAIR in Medicine Fellow Mark Buchanan, MD will moderate the webinar. Panelists include William B. Hurlbut, MD, Adjunct Professor and Senior Research Scholar in Neurobiology at the Stanford Medical School, who writes and consults widely on bioethics; Robert Graboyes, PhD FAIR in Medicine Fellow, health economist, prolific journalist, and musician, a veteran of the faculties of several universities and of the Federal Reserve Bank.
FAIR Fundraiser: Paradise Valley, Arizona
Join us at a beautiful private home in Paradise Valley, Arizona on Tuesday, November 8th at 6:00 p.m. for cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, great company & conversation, all in support of FAIR! Featuring FAIR in the Arts Fellows Winston Marshall, Cliff Duncan, and Lincoln Jones along with FAIR Founder Bion Bartning and documentary filmmaker Meg Smaker.
This event is FREE and open to all!
Unchallengeable Orthodoxy in the Arts Panel Discussion at ASU School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership
On Wednesday, November 9th at 5 p.m. MT, join FAIR Founder and President Bion Bartning and FAIR in the Arts Fellows Clifton Duncan, Lincoln Jones, and Winston Marshall along with filmmaker Meg Smaker for a panel discussion titled Unchallengeable Orthodoxy in the Arts.
Hear from artists who found the courage to speak up in the face of overwhelming social pressure, were targeted for doing so, and weathered the storm. Learn how to navigate these new challenges and why it is important to support excellence and creative freedom in the arts.
This event will be live and in-person at the Arizona State University campus, and will also be recorded and posted on the SCETL YouTube channel after the event date and time.
FAIR in Medicine Open House with Bob Ostertag
Join FAIR in Medicine on Thursday, November 10th, at 7:00 p.m. ET for an open house featuring author and musician Bob Ostertag. We will discuss Bob’s 2016 book, Sex, Science, and Self: A Social History of Estrogen, Testosterone, and Identity which discusses the complicated relationship between medical innovations, psychology, the sexual revolution, gay rights advocacy, and modern man’s search for an authentic self that suffers less.
FAIR at Occidental College, LA Event
Join FAIR and the Oxy Persuasion Club on Thursday, November 10th at 2:00 p.m. at the Thorne Auditorium at Occidental College for a FREE roundtable discussion and musical event! Emceed by Professor Jacob Mackey and featuring FAIR Founder Bion Bartning, FAIR Advisors Daryl Davis, John Wood, Jr., and Kimi Katiti, and FAIR in the Arts Fellow Winston Marshall, along with Bertrand Cooper and Salomé Sibonex, this will be an afternoon of music and discussion you won’t want to miss!
This event is FREE and open to all!
FAIR Fundraiser: Los Angeles
Join us on Thursday, November 10th at 7:00 p.m. PT at The Berkshire House in Los Angeles, California for a special evening of music, conversation, and celebration!
Featuring FAIR in the Arts Fellows Winston Marshall, Lincoln Jones, and Michelle Pollino, this event is an opportunity to meet FAIR members, Advisors, and volunteers, and directly support FAIR’s pro-human approach to cultural issues.
FAIR Fundraiser: San Francisco
Join us on Saturday, November 12th at 6:00 p.m. PT at Villa Taverna in San Francisco, California for a special evening of music, conversation, and celebration.
Featuring FAIR in the Arts Fellows Winston Marshall and FAIR Advisor Michael Shellenberger, this event includes an option for a VIP pre-event cocktail hour.
FAIR Fundraiser: New York City
Join us on Saturday, November 15th at 6:00 p.m. PT at Butterfly in New York City for a special evening of music, conversation, and celebration, featuring FAIR in the Arts Fellows Winston Marshall and Daryl Davis, along with Kevin Ray and Sahar Tartak.
Rights and Responsibilities: A Symposium for School Board Members
The importance of school boards has come to the forefront in recent years. Join us at the Great Wolf Lodge in the Wisconsin Dells from the evening of Thursday, December 15th to Saturday, December 17th to learn more about your rights and responsibilities as a board member, and how to approach your local community leadership position using FAIR’s principles of fairness, understanding, and humanity.
Presenters include FAIR Advisors Robert Pondiscio, Adam Seagrave, and Zander Keig, along with Cory Brewer, Jennifer Meinhardt, and FAIR Action Fellow Tanya Simons.
FAIR Perspectives Podcast
This week on Fair Perspectives, we are proud to present a short film by Daisy Wu titled The Chinese Box, starring friend of FAIR, Ye Pogue. The film touches on how the government reinforces racial categories, often against the will of people who feel flattened by those categories. We then chat with Ye and Daisy about the film, the complexity of identity, and how we can move forward with a focus on common humanity.
Xiaowen “Daisy” Wu is currently an international student studying film and television production at the University of Southern California. She previously finished her undergrad degree at Boston University. Her work explores identity, feminism and social issues.
Dr. Ye Zhang Pogue is a health policy researcher and behavioral scientist. She explores The concept of identity in American culture through writing. Because of her experience of living and coping with bipolar disorder and its stigma, she has developed a unique way of seeing the world through common humanity. She writes a blog for Psychology Today called The Human Identity, and her work has been published in Newsweek and on FAIR's Substack. She is also the Vice President of the nonprofit organization Asian Americans for Equal Rights.
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The Chinese Box: Featuring Ye Zhang Pogue
For FAIR’s YouTube channel, we are proud to present a film directed by Daisy Wu and featuring friend of FAIR Ye Zhang Pogue entitled The Chinese Box, which touches on how the government reinforces racial categories, often against the will of people who feel flattened by those categories.
FAIR Educators Alliance & Administrators Alliance Happy Hours
Teachers often feel isolated and alone in their schools, but FAIR is here for you! The FAIR Educators Alliance brings together educators from all levels to share experiences and concerns and work on developing resources that can support teachers, community members, and FAIR chapters.
FAIR’s Educator’s Alliance is hosting an informal happy hour every other Thursday evening, alternating between beginning at 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. ET, and will hold more formal monthly meetings that will address issues based on your interests and needs.
If you’re a K-12 school administrator, we’re here to support you too! You’re invited to join the FAIR Administrators Alliance, which holds meetings the last Thursday of every month at 1:00 p.m. ET!
All teachers and administrators are welcome! For more information and to subscribe to the calendar, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Calling all FAIR Member Librarians and Library Staff! FAIR has established a network for members to connect and discuss key issues affecting their profession, advance pro-human principles, and preserve academic freedoms in library systems. The group meets biweekly.
Please contact email@example.com if you are interested in joining!