For immediate release: The Pope’s comparison – Gender theory like nuclear weapons?

The Trans Secretariat of ILGA reacts to the comparison made by pope Francis in his latest book This Economy Kills, between nuclear weapons, genetic engineering and gender theory.

“The Pope criticizes gender theory – said Mikee Inton, representative of the ILGA Trans Secretariat STRAP – as going against ‘the order of creation’ and likens the act of transitioning to the destruction wrought by weapons of mass destruction. As trans* people, we do not undertake the decision to transition lightly, and we see the Pope’s message as a gross misunderstanding not only of gender theory but also of trans* people’s rights to bodily autonomy. We are incredibly disappointed and deeply hurt by this message from the Pope, who has done so much to highlight the oppression brought about by global poverty in his messages. The Pope should know by now that it is not only poverty that oppresses people, but also messages of bigotry and intolerance. Comparing trans* people to weapons of mass destruction not only vilifies and dehumanizes trans*people around the world, but can also be easily misconstrued as a message that justifies and reinforces feelings of transphobia and hate, and acts of violence directed at trans* people.”

“We, of course, – continued Inton – have not lost the hope that Pope Francis is as full of compassion and love as he claims to be. In January this year, he personally met a transgender man, Diego Neria Lejarraga, to comfort him when he had been shunned by his own local Church in Spain. We only ask that the same compassion be extended to all trans* people around the world.”


Manila/Geneva 20 February 2015