A California medical school student says professors are cowering to “woke ideology” out of fear that students will use an instant reporting system against them if they teach that sex is a biological reality and not a "social construct."
In a piece titled “Med Schools are Now Denying Biological Sex,” on the Substack page called “Common Sense with Bari Weiss,” journalist Katie Herzog shared recordings of lectures captured by a student at a medical school in the University of California system. One recording details how, after using the term “pregnant women” during a lecture, the professor of an endocrinology course apologized for uttering that phrase.
“I’m very sorry for that. It was clearly not my intention to offend anyone. The worst thing that I can do as a human being is be offensive,” he said. “I said ‘when a woman is pregnant,’ which implies that only women can get pregnant and I most sincerely apologize to all of you.”
While biologically speaking, only women can get pregnant, Herzog’s report comes at a time when many people are claiming otherwise. Just last week, draft drawings of a proposed emoji featuring a “pregnant man” first surfaced. The proposed emoji, designed to advance the idea that men can get pregnant as well as women, could be available to the public as early as next year.
The medical school student who provided recordings to Herzog explained that from the perspective of some of her classmates, “acknowledging biological sex can be considered transphobic.” Herzog wrote that “when sex is acknowledged by her instructors, it’s sometimes portrayed as a social construct, not a biological reality.” For example, one of the girl’s professors reportedly argued that “Biological sex, sexual orientation, and gender are all constructs.”
When asked whether professors actually believe the aforementioned statements that they recited in front of their students, the student, who Herzog referred to as the pseudonym “Lauren,” theorized, “I think there’s a small percentage of instructors who are true believers. But most of them are probably just scared of their students.”
Additionally, this particular medical school has an online forum where students can correct their professors for using gender-specific terms such as “male,” “female,” or “breastfeed” as opposed to gender-neutral terms like “chestfeed.” This forum enables students to “lodge their complaints in real time during lectures.” Lauren recalled how one time, “a professor was so upset by students calling her out for using ‘male’ and ‘female’ that she started crying.”
Lauren also told Herzog that at the beginning of the previous school year, students circulated petitions in an effort to “name and shame” professors for engaging in “wrongspeak.”
Examples of “wrongspeak” cited in the petitions included use of the pronouns “she” and “her” as well as the terms “father” and “son.” Upon receiving the petition, the professor accused of using the “cisnormative” language apologized for speaking in “binary” terms and noted that she had consulted with a member of the school’s LGBT Committee before giving the lecture.
Another professor became the subject of a petition for calling a trans-identified male “a man changing into a woman,” which upset students because “it implies that the trans woman wasn’t always a woman.”
Lauren added that “since the petitions were sent out, instructors have been far more proactive about ‘correcting’ their slides in advance or sending out emails to the school listserv if any upcoming material has ‘outdated’ terminology.”
In one case, a professor sent out an email warning that an upcoming lecture might not align with the school’s “approach to gender inclusivity and gender/sex antioppression” because it would include the phrase “premenopausal women.” The professor vowed to rectify the issue by using the term “premenopausal people” in the future.
The “woke ideology” that has taken hold in medical schools has also made its way into the larger scientific community. Herzog mentioned that the American Psychological Association now considers the terms “natal sex” and “birth sex” “disparaging” and instead uses the phrase “assigned sex at birth.”
She warned that “the National Institutes of Health, the CDC, and Harvard Medical School have all made efforts to divorce sex from medicine and emphasize gender identity.” The journalist wrote that “In 2018, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended that pediatricians ‘affirm’ their parents’ chosen gender without taking into account mental health, family history, trauma, or fears of puberty.”
Herzog stressed that the ideology sweeping through medical schools and the medical community as a whole has led to a de-emphasization on the different medical experiences faced by males and females.
For example, Lauren discussed how abdominal aortic aneurysms were “four times as likely to occur in males than females,” but she was never informed of that fact. Instead, she “had to look it up.”
“I don’t have time to look up the sex predominance for all the diseases I’m expected to know. I’m not even sure what I’m not being taught, and unless my classmates are as skeptical as I am, they probably aren’t aware either.”
Along with featuring firsthand testimony from a medical school student, Herzog’s piece included quotes from established medical professionals who agreed that the imposition of “woke ideology” that ignores or downplays differences between the two biological genders into the medical community will have disastrous consequences.
A former dean of a leading medical school told Herzog that the anecdotes shared in the article “are a serious departure from the expectation that medical education and practice should be based on science and free from imposition of ideology and ideology-based intimidation.” He also said that “how male and female members of our species develop, how they differ genetically, anatomically, physiologically, and with respect to diseases and their treatment are foundational to clinical medicine and research.”
The former medical school official maintained that “efforts to erase or diminish these foundations should be unacceptable to responsible professional leaders.”
Lauren expressed hope that “the truth will come out and science will eventually prevail,” but remained skeptical because the new gender ideology movement is portrayed as a civil rights movement that “seems virtuous” and “seems like the right thing to do,” concluding that it is difficult to “fight against something that’s being marketed as a fight for human rights.”
Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org