The Scottish government is determined to advance trans ideology - and it's our children who will suffer
The cynical would suggest that it's not often that a politician or government keeps their promises. But sometimes they do. In 2018 the Scottish Government Deputy First Minister John Swinney announced that Scotland would become the first country in the world to have LGBT inclusive education embedded in the curriculum. He was following up on the priority stated in 2014 by his boss Nicola Sturgeon who declared that "it is trans issues that are the next big challenge".
Sturgeon has been determined to follow the trans ideology – even getting rid of one of her more competent ministers, Joanna Cherry, simply because she dared to stand up for women's rights. No one should be surprised at the trajectory that Scotland has been going. The SNP promised it and they have kept this promise.
This week it was reported by The Telegraph that "children as young as four will be able to change their name and gender at school without their parents' consent under new LGBT inclusivity guidelines drawn up by the Scottish Government."
You have to stop, take a breath and re-read that sentence again. Many people just simply don't believe it. As someone said to me, it's so mad that it cannot be true. Four-year-olds sometimes think they are animals or Thomas the Tank Engine – they are certainly not capable of determining that they are a different gender from their body.
When my children were at primary school they were not even allowed to have sun cream put on them by a teacher without written permission from a parent. Now a four-year-old can change their gender without their parents even being told! Following that logic, there is no reason why a child should not also determine that they want to be sexually active!
One atheist contacted me to say that if this were true he would be on the streets protesting – but of course it can't be true. But such denial doesn't help. This is happening in Scotland today.
The guidance states that pupils should be allowed to use whatever toilet or changing room they want, have gender neutral uniforms, and transgender characters and history should be included. Of course all this comes from Stonewall – who are funded by the Scottish government to tell the schools what they should be doing.
Women's groups are rightly concerned. Again to quote from the article: "This is really, really worrying," said Marion Calder, co-director of the For Women Scotland campaign group. "The bottom line is that this is a dangerous ideology that the Scottish Government is pushing.
"It shows a failure in safeguarding and a removal of parental rights. It used to be commonly understood that children should be able to play and experiment with gender roles, with clothing, their likes and dislikes.
"Those children are now being encouraged on to a medical pathway, potentially for the rest of their lives. We should not be teaching children, and especially primary school children, that you can change sex, because you cannot change sex."
I have a great deal of personal experience of this. I could tell you so many stories. The-7-year old returning home from school in tears because the teacher said that she had to choose whether she was a boy or girl; the 14-year-old teenage boy advised by a guidance teacher that his depression might be because he was a girl trapped in the wrong body (the school was after a Stonewall award and as they had no trans pupils that was difficult); the posters in a classroom for six-year-olds telling them to 'respect others' pronouns' (are you not impressed that six-year-olds know what pronouns are?); the angry young woman in tears because after detransitioning she wanted to know why no one in authority discouraged her from taking such a damaging path; and so many more. A trail of damaged young lives all because our leaders are enslaved to this harmful ideology.
The Scottish government has now gone down this damaging route. What Abigail Shirer calls 'Irreversible Damage' in her insightful and disturbing book of the same name, is now official State doctrine in Scotland. The extraordinary thing in this is not just that the government is encouraging this – but that it is also displaying its utter contempt for parents in doing so.
A few years ago, because of my writing on the subject, I was asked by the Scottish government to meet with their civil servants who were drawing up the legislation. They asked me if I could ever see my way to support the proposed gender recognition act, and the changes in the law. I said no – but that I would ask for compromise on three things. Firstly, women would be guaranteed women-only spaces in jails, hospitals, refuges and sport. Secondly, I would not go to jail for saying that a man could not become a woman or vice versa. And thirdly, that this queer theory ideology should not be taught to children. At the end of our discussions it became clear that none of these things would be given. Even then the Scottish government was set on this abusive and destructive path.
A month later I was summoned to meet Shirley-Anne Somerville, who is now the SNP education secretary, and who has stated that the new government guidance for schools does not promote transitioning. When we had what is often called a 'full and frank discussion' I suggested to her that this was a suicidal route for the SNP to go down (I didn't fully realise what a stranglehold the SNP has over the Scottish press and the civic institutions) and that if she and I had a debate on this issue in front of any group of parents in Scotland, she would overwhelmingly lose, not because of my brilliance but purely and simply because most parents have far more knowledge and common sense than our civic elites.
I have never forgotten her chilling reply: "That's because most parents are ignorant." In that one phrase the contempt of the Scottish government for parents and the family was exemplified. So this week's announcement that four-year-olds can transition under the influence of teachers, but not parents, was not a surprise to me.
What can be done about this? You would hope that politicians, teachers' unions and medics would all speak out. But the truth is that the civic institutions have either been indoctrinated into this insanity, or people within them are too scared to speak out because it could be career ending. This will be even more so now that the SNP are to go into a formal government with the Greens – who under their leader, Patrick Harvie, are the foremost advocates of Queer theory and will insist on even more indoctrination.
You would hope that the Church leaders would speak out. But I suspect that whilst they will have no qualms about making proclamations about racism in America, or Brexit, or climate change, it will be a hot day in Scotland before they say a word on this issue. Perhaps an odd mix of women's groups, left wing social conservatives, evangelical Christians and parents can be mobilised to work together to oppose this evil. Because it must be opposed.
'You're upset,' I've been told. Absolutely! This is not about cultural wars. This is not about politics. This is not about oppressing those who suffer from gender dysphoria and need proper help. This is about the abuse of children. This is about my grandchildren and many others. This is about Scotland heading down into Hellish depths.
I share the upset of Jesus. "If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea" (Matthew 18:6).
This is Code Red for Scotland's children. Enough.
David Robertson works as an evangelist with churches in Sydney, Australia. He blogs at The Wee Flea.