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$325,000+ in salaries for Zucker & Blanchard to pathologize trans people
Transgender taxpayers in Canada help foot the bill for their own pathologization, helping to pay nearly $328,000 in 2008 to two conservative Toronto psychologists working to turn back the clock on the rights of sex and gender minorities worldwide.Public disclosure documents show that Ray Blanchard was paid over $172,000 in 2008, and Kenneth Zucker was paid over $155,500. Both men work at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto. This former "lunatic asylum" is home to the most notorious and regressive facility in the world dedicated to preventing and "curing" gender non-conforming behavior in children and adults.
Both Blanchard and Zucker are also heavily involved in the political push within psychology to continue labeling sex and gender minorities as disordered and diseased. Homosexuality was depathologized in 1973, but these men have an obvious and substantial financial interest in not just maintaining the status quo, but in expanding the definitions of sexual "disorders" that can be applied to all people. Their CAMH clinics are major recipients of taxpayer funds via the provincial and federal healthcare systems in Canada, so more "disordered" people mean more money for their clinics and themselves.
Both men are not just driven by money. They are also driven by a desire to promote their own reactionary beliefs about sex and gender minorities.
Zucker is the world's foremost proponent of reparative therapy for gender-variant youth. The few clinics that do this reparative therapy treat up to 30 times more children assigned as boys at birth. This remarkable statistic reflects the deeper hatred of boys who are "too feminine." Zucker considers transsexualism a bad outcome for these children and blames poor family dynamics and maternal psychopathology for gender-nonconforming behavior. He claims this phenomenon is more likely in non-white children with lower IQs. Zucker's therapy for these children includes forcing them to stop wearing pink or purple, or creating art with those colors. He also prohibits playing with or drawing pictures of girls. Parents are expected to enforce this behavior through withholding attention and affection until the children conform.
Blanchard seeks a broad expansion of the definition of "paraphilia" to include anyone attracted to someone who is not "phenotypically normal." Under such a definition, being attracted to people who are obese, disabled, or even taller or shorter than "normal" could be reduced to a paraphilic disorder. Blanchard reserves special contempt for transsexual women, for whom he has created a rigid taxonomy in which they are either a type of gay man or a sexually obsessed fetishist. He once declared to the Toronto Globe and Mail that a transsexual woman who has transitioned is merely "a man without a penis," echoing his fixation on "phallometrics," the measurement of penile length, width, and tumescence when subjects are exposed to erotic stimuli. The field of "phallometrics" was developed by Blanchard's mentor at CAMH to determine if army recruits were gay or not. Blanchard, who has not disclosed his own sexual orientation publicly, is considered an expert in determining the size and tumescence of male genitalia.
Decades of self-preservation and self-promotion
American citizens Blanchard and Zucker left the United States for Canada in the midst of the Vietnam War, then stayed in Canada after President Ford declared amnesty for draft evaders. This instinct for self-preservation is echoed in their efforts to keep taxpayer money flowing into their clinics. They frequently claim in their defense that they support medical procedures for trans people, but that is because any tax money allotted for that went directly to their clinics. Their support of these procedures meant more money for them. When they did control all acccess to trans health services in Ontario, they rejected more than 90% of applicants at their clinics and were known for long wait lists and regressive requirements. This led most trans people in Canada to seek health services from other sources. CAMH's own Diversity Program Office published a report critical of their approach and attitudes toward the trans people they are paid to serve. They have responded to criticisms from outside their organization by using CAMH lawyers to threaten SLAPP suits. In one instance, they threatened Professor Lynn Conway with a libel suit for simply posting a link to another website.
Both men have methodically worked to shore up their job security over the years by politicking their way into key positions at organizations that set policy around sex and gender minorities. Zucker and Blanchard are hoping to codify their ideologies in the 2012 edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Both are on the committee dealing with sex and gender "disorders" along with several like-minded associates. They seek deeper entrenchment of existing "diseases" and a broad expansion of concepts like "paraphilia" to include attraction to anyone who is not "phenotypically normal." By most accounts, their efforts will likely be rewarded, and their worldview will be codified for more than a decade. The next edition of the DSM would not be published until after both men are retirement age in the 2020s.
Any funding secured for trans health directly benefits them
Though many in the Ontario transgender community have been critical of these men for years, activists have had limited success. That's because most funding for trans health services goes directly to CAMH, who've had a controlling monopoly over the lives of trans people. Until the tax dollars that keep these bigots in business are diverted to better options, any funding victory for trans people in Ontario will be an even bigger victory for CAMH and its employees.
Effectively, the Ontario Ministry of Health is subsidizing the pathologization and stigmatization of transgender people worldwide by funding these CAMH "experts." It's time to let Ontario legislators know the harm they are doing to trans people worldwide. Once CAMH is out of the picture, trans people will be able to move toward true equality and access to health services for all.
Ray Blanchard on transsexualism
Kenneth J. Zucker on transsexualism
"Drop the Barbie": Ken Zucker's reparatist treatment of gender-variant children
Petition: "Objection to DSM-V Committee Members on Gender Identity Disorders"
Petition: "To the Honourable George Smitherman, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care for Ontario - Against human rights violations of apparently gender variant children and adults"
"The War Within: CAMH scathing internal report Zucker’s and Blanchard’s gender clinics
Dr. Kenneth Zucker's War on Transgenders
Kenneth Zucker's legal threats: Part of a pattern of silencing transgender critics
Close the CAMH Gender Identity Clinic group on Facebook
Gender Madness in American Psychiatry: Essays from the Struggle for Dignity