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Steve Weatherbe

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Buzzfeed’s ‘global’ poll shows acceptance of transgenderism on the rise. Just one problem.

Steve Weatherbe

January 5, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Transgender rights to adopt, to marry, to use washrooms of their choice are accepted by majorities in the United States, Canada, and most of the other 21 countries polled by Ipsos Global Advisor for two pro-LGBT organizations in a survey intended "to get a sense of global attitudes on transgender rights," but that notably excluded parts of the world most opposed to the LGBT agenda.

The Internet survey of 17,105 adults (ages 18-64 in the U.S. and Canada, 16-64 in all other countries) was conducted for pro-LGBT news site Buzzfeed and the Williams Institute, the LGBT research center at UCLA. It surveyed a range of European and Latin American countries, Canada and the U.S., China, South Korea, Japan, India, South Africa, and Turkey.

South Africa is considered the most liberal country in Africa, where public attitudes elsewhere on the continent are mostly critical of the LGBT agenda. The only country represented from the predominantly Muslim Middle East was Turkey, regarded as the most liberal nation in a region largely hostile to the LGBT agenda.

“While the study is interesting in surveying public opinion beyond merely the U.S., Canada, and Western Europe, it can in no way be considered representative of ‘world opinion’ on ‘transgender rights,’” commented Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council based in Washington, D.C. , noting that areas hostile to LGBT aspirations such as Africa and the Islamic Middle East were among many parts of the world largely un-polled.

Canada was among the countries most supportive overall of transgenderism along with Spain, Argentina, Germany and Sweden. The U.S. was closer to the center of the pack, though still showing more support than opposition. Peru, Russia, China, South Korea, Poland, and Hungary were the most opposed.

Seventy-five percent of Canadians were strongly or somewhat supportive of gender change, as were 72 percent of Americans.

Asked whether people should be allowed to change government documentation to fit their trans identity, two-thirds of Americans and three-fourths of Canadians agreed they should, but most attached conditions such as the approval of a doctor, surgery to approximate the new identity, or government approval.

Only 26 percent of Canadians approved of redocumentation solely on the trans person’s say-so, which was about average for the whole survey, along with only 22 percent of Americans and 11 percent of Russians. A quarter of Americans and Canadians believed people should be issued new IDs only after so-called “sex-change” surgery.

On the most inflammatory issue, whether trans people should be allowed to use the washrooms of their choice, 63 percent of Canadians supported it “strongly” or “somewhat,” but only 45 percent of Americans and 26 percent of Russians.

Four of five Canadians believe trans people should be protected from discrimination, as do 71 percent of Americans, but only 40 percent of Russians, about the same who oppose protection.

Majorities in only 16 countries support the right of transgender people to marry, and majorities in only 14 countries want transgender people to be able to adopt children.

Sprigg said the survey shows that the most extreme demands of transgender advocates — “such as transgenders being able to redocument without conditions” — are not supported by a majority of people.

Sprigg also questioned whether differently framed questions might have produced results less positive for the transgender agenda. For example, regarding  restrooms, if the question had been asked instead about “change rooms” whose occupants disrobe in front of one another, Sprigg believes there have would not have been as much support for transgender usage. Similarly, that also could have been the case if the restroom question had been broken down similar to the documentation question with conditions such as doctor’s approval or sex change surgery being added.

“If the questions are all framed around discrimination, people will be sympathetic because this raises up images of racism in this country. We know without thinking that discrimination is bad,” he said. “But if the framework is privacy, you might get answers that are more negative.”

Sprigg said the survey, if accurate, reflects how the public has been convinced of a falsehood that transgenderism is beneficial. “The research shows that gender change does not benefit the people undergoing the change.” The Ipsos survey might only serve to encourage more people to “come out” with their gender preferences, even though it would have been more beneficial to their mental and physical health to suppress these desires, he said.

As well, Sprigg questioned whether the survey truly reflected the world’s attitudes. “Opinion in Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Central America, and much of Eastern Europe is poorly represented in this survey. Given the religious and cultural conservatism of many of these regions, it is probably safe to assume that overall world opinion regarding the ‘transgender’ movement is more negative than in the 23 countries surveyed by the Williams Institute,” he said.

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