Katie Honan, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal (10/10/18), gave an account of how the honorable Mayor of the City of New York signed into law a bill that will create a third gender option on birth certificates. The Mayor is quoted as stating “How can someone have happiness if they cannot be who they are? How can someone be free and have liberty if they are not recognized for who they see themselves to be?”
It is obvious that Mayor Bill de Blasio believes he has the obligation to live up to his name “Bill” and is therefore entitled to sign any “bill” that he deems to be in the interest of the City he represents as long as in his opinion it makes sense. Notwithstanding whether it accords with common sense, morality, precedent and the people he was elected to represent!
Sadly, the Mayor chooses to ignore the vast majority of New York City citizens who do not agree in any shape, manner or form with this new gender option for birth certificates. The Birth Certificate is something that is unique to the human race. Now the Mayor thinks he can redefine humanity by introducing a new and contrived gender classification as to what a human being can be. Namely, as represented with the letter X — neither male nor female, an X will suffice.
This bill is an affront on many different levels.
Let’s begin with the fact that as the Mayor of New York he carries the title of “His Honor.” A Mayor personifies and represents the collective honor and respect of the citizens he represents. For this reason alone Mayor de Blasio should not have signed into law such a disgraceful and anti-religious bill which flies in the face of Biblical values adhered to by the vast majority of NYC residents.
X is not a recognized name or title. Who ever heard of a person being called and identified as an X? Would the Mayor countenance being identified as Mayor X de Blasio?
The Torah identifies the human being as being either male or female as it is written “…male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:27)
City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who introduced this misguided bill, noted that he heard from transgender New Yorkers who stressed how important a third gender option is for them. “This was the bill I was most proud of,” he said. Pride does not come from lightly disposing of human biology, culture and history. Shame on him and the City Council members who voted on the passage of this ill-conceived third gender bill.
The Torah clearly identifies the distinction between male and female and enjoins us from attempting to remove or obfuscate the difference between male and female, so much so that male attire is restricted for men and women’s attire is reserved for females. (Deuteronomy 22:5) The Torah calls failing to adhere to these laws an abomination.
The “third gender bill” is no more than a big X on the reputation of the Mayor and the City Council.
As New Yorkers and citizens of the world who treasure the biblical heritage and believe in the Seven Universal Laws of Noah, we protest this sham of a bill furthering the erosion of morality and family values from our societal life and culture.
As our Sages of the Talmud clearly state: In the place where there is a desecration of the Name of G-D, we do not afford honor even to a great person (Talmud Berachot 19:)
That is to say, even where one would argue for human dignity this does not outweigh the desecration of G-d’s Name that results from enshrining into law the transgression of even one of His commandments.
Clearly, our Mayor and City Council should rescind forthright this contrived third gender law. It’s time for hizzoner Bill de Blasio, to recognize our Creator’s honor.
By: Rabbi Yehoshua S. Hecht
(Rabbi Yehoshua S. Hecht is the chairman of the presidium of the Rabbinical Alliance of America/Igud HaRabbonim)
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