I think transgender people should definitely be able to get sex changes, other disorders and things where people may want to amputate their leg could be rather different. I do not think their is some sort of 'malfunction' in the brain of a transgender, it's just who they are. Their personality and feelings just go against their biological gender and they want to be the other gender in order to be happy, I do not see how that could mean there is a problem. For instance, some people feel they want to change the colour of their hair, the length of their hair, the shape of their hair to what suits them, to what they like, and yet I don't see anyone trying to find out if something has gone 'wrong' in their mind. Just like how some people maybe get their ears pierced whilst other get piercings all over their faces and bodies and I don't hear people saying that something in their brain has malfunctioned. Sure these things are a much smaller deal and somewhat different to wanting to change your sex, but if you think about it, it's kind of similar. Things like wanting to get your leg amputated Is relatively different, your personality does not necessarily reflect whether you are to have 2 legs, 1 leg or no legs. But personality can reflect your gender as I'm sure everyone knows, of course you could have a personality that some may consider to not reflect your own gender but still believe you are the right gender because your personality still reflects your actual gender or you could be gender fluid like me. I sometimes identify as male and other times as female, generally when I'm with a member of the opposite sex I am female whilst with the same sex I am male, although my biological gender is female, when I am not in a relationship and have no feelings for anyone I either switch between male and female or I become rather gender neutral. Although this gender fluid thing is slightly different to being transgender. But anyway if they decided to do research to try and 'fix' the 'malfunction' at the root cause they would have to completely re-wire that person's personality! Basically they would take a perfectly fine normal person and make them become someone else. And I'm sure you wouldn't do that to someone whose personality shows that they need short purple hair instead of the long blonde hair they grew up with. Just think about it a little
As someone who actually has BIID, I completely agree that this should be an option open to patients, but with some regulations. First, amputation should be the last resort. As of now, there are not many treatments for BIID, but I know that talking with a therapist and/or taking medicines, such as antidepressants, have helped many people, including me. Many people who may or may have not gotten help have taken matters into their own hands and attempted to amputate their own limbs, which puts them at an extreme risk for infection, blood loss, extensive injury, and death. I believe that if people even just were aware that amputation could be an option, that could be something that they could hang on to. Just my opinion, hope it makes sense!
The difference here is that amputating healthy tissue causes objective harm. If you cut off a leg the person can no longer walk. An arm the person loses other important physical functions.
Granted that argument can be made in the case of sex change operations. However, you don't really need reproductive functions in order to live. Technically you don't need an arm or a leg in order to live but you do need them to live well, to be physically fit, and depending on your job to perform your job. Plenty of people forgo having kids or have kids in an artificial way or adopt and live just fine. That's the difference.
I suppose there should be a few other exceptions. If someone desperately wants their pinky removed it doesn't really serve any functions so they should be able to get that. But not an arm or a leg.
I've asked this question because I'd love to hear more on the science behind this topic. As far as I can tell, there is always a medical/biological reason for everything our bodies do and feel. Whether or not the way our bodies work is considered 'normal' or a 'malfunction' is up for debate but regardless, I think all non-heterobiaseds would agree that people are born gay and it really doesn't matter if that was the result of something that 'went wrong' or if it's a normal part of our design for some people to be gay (the sheer number would imply yes, we can't exactly argue 'the gene was accidentally spread through breeding'!) What I'm building up to is that there are limits and being gay isn't anywhere near the limit as there are no detrimental effects to absolutely anyone in the world. However, with transgender people, I don't understand why the focus has been on campaigning to allow 'amputations' of perfectly healthy tissue as opposed to investigating the root cause of why the brain isn't recognising itself as male/female. Consider: most people would be horrified if doctors started amputating everyone who suffered from body integrity identity disorder (BIID). If someone doesn't recognise a limb as belonging to them, say a leg, we don't start campaigns to force doctors to amputate, we conduct research into why their brain is 'malfunctioning' and we try to fix it at the root. Wouldn't it make more sense to try to 're-wire' the brains of people who don't recognise their own genders? People seem to be okay with arguments like "my soul has been placed in the wrong body" etc. which is utter nonsense for a few reasons but no one would ever listen to that if someone wanted their leg sawing off! Further to that, I think doctors should always be exempt from following current PC trends (there are limits to everything of course) and I don't think the issue should be placed in the same category as homosexuality because they are nowhere near each other on any scale in terms of the effect on society and the individual involved (I'm referring more to the drastic action of operations as opposed to the social implications). I don't think organisations like LGBT should include transgender issues as I feel they're totally separate.