Scientific America’s opening salvo is an editorial with the headline, “Why the New Science of Sex & Gender Matters for Everyone.”
The piece is astonishing not just because it’s poorly written and ill-conceived—one would expect more from such smart people—but also because it offers no evidence to back up its claim there is “new science” on sex and gender.
Here’s how it begins:
Sex is supposed to be simple—at least at the molecular level. The biological explanations that appear in textbooks amount to X + X = and X + Y = . Venus or Mars, pink or blue. As science looks more closely, however, it becomes increasingly clear that a pair of chromosomes do not always suffice to distinguish girl/boy—either from the standpoint of sex (biological traits) or of gender (social identity).
So you would think that science would cite multiple peer-reviewed studies or a meta-analysis of a body of work to prove this so-called “new” science, the article instead offers this:
“Researchers have found XY cells in a 94-year-old woman, and surgeons discovered a womb in a 70-year-old man, a father of four.” There is no link to either case in the magazine or online version; a Google search comes up empty. Pretty thin gruel for a bold proclamation that we are “biological hybrids on a male-female continuum.”
Really? That’s it?
I wouldn’t think that science would support facts over feelings. But I guess I am behind the times scientifically.