Sexuality and Gender Discussion

January 16, 2024


DRAFT Position Statement


The New Enlightenment Project offers the following analysis and points for discussion based on our respect for science and the free exchange of ideas. We believe that policies derived from these ideas would promote justice and human dignity.


There are two sexes as determined by biology: male and female.

There are basically two genders, based on sex; but other gender expressions exist.


• ‘Sex’ and ‘gender’ are often used interchangeably, despite having different meanings:

• Sex refers to a set of biological attributes in humans and animals. It is primarily associated with physical and physiological features including chromosomes, gene expression, hormone levels and function, and reproductive/sexual anatomy. Sex is usually categorized as female or male but there is variation in the biological attributes that comprise sex and how those attributes are expressed.

• Gender refers to the socially constructed roles, behaviours, expressions and identities of girls, women, boys, men, and gender diverse people. It influences how people perceive themselves and each other, how they act and interact, and the distribution of power and resources in society. Gender identity is not confined to a binary (girl/woman, boy/man) nor is it static; it exists along a continuum and can change over time. There is considerable diversity in how individuals and groups understand, experience and express gender through the roles they take on, the expectations placed on them, relations with others and the complex ways that gender is institutionalized in society. [source: Government of Canada: Canadian Institutes of Health Research, used by permission]


Analysis based on scientific research:

• From a strictly scientific point of view, biological sex refers to the type of reproductive strategy that an individual has. Species such as humans are characterized by the fusion of heterogamous gametes that usually differ chiefly in size. A gamete is a mature male or female germ cell which is able to unite with another of the opposite sex in sexual reproduction to form a zygote (fertilized egg cell). The individual that produces the larger-sized gamete or ovum is called the female. The one who produces the smaller gamete or sperm is called the male. This is fundamentally what biological sex means. It refers to these reproductive strategies rooted in the type of gamete that they have the function to produce.

• Biological sex is binary because there are only two gamete types. There is sperm and there is ovum. There are only two options for an individual to have with respect to sex, and that is either male or female. There’s no third sex. There’s no third type of gamete, which would be the requirement for there to be a third sex or more.


• Almost all babies are born with exclusively male or exclusively female genitalia that correspond to their gametes

• The vast majority of individuals identify emotionally with their genitalia as female or male

• Most individuals are attracted sexually to the opposite sex

• There are individuals who are attracted exclusively to members of the same sex

• There are individuals who are attracted to both sexes

• A small number of individuals do not identity with their genitalia (transgendered)

• A small number of individuals do not identity as male or female but rather as

gender fluid or non-binary

• An Ipsos 27 country poll of 2021 reported that, on average, globally:

• 80% identify as heterosexual;

3% as gay, lesbian or homosexual;

4% as bisexual;

1% as pansexual or omnisexual;

1% as asexual;

1% as “other”;

11% don’t know or won’t say.

Policy Recommendations for Discussion

• Children, adolescents or adults who do not identify simply as heterosexual female or heterosexual male should not be the victims of discrimination based on their orientation. They should be recognized and supported as members of minority groups.

• No surgery or hormone therapy should be applied before puberty for those children who self-identify as transgendered or otherwise.

• Surgery or hormone therapy for adolescents who have reached puberty should be used only after very carefully consideration by a team of health experts. Children who are distressed by adolescence should be offered counseling. Since children lack the capacity to give meaningful consent, consent should be left to the parents. Parents also need to be involved in the selection of professionals they trust.

• What school children of various ages are taught about sex and gender needs to be carefully considered. Too much information at too young an age can be confusing and disconcerting. We do not need sex education in kindergarten and elementary levels.

• Teaching toleration of others and life skills like not accepting candy from strangers is not sex education. So-called “gender education” is indoctrination of stereotypes.

• All students should be taught be understanding of and compassionate towards those who are different from the vast majority. No bullying is to be tolerated.

• Parents should be kept informed by schools and health professionals if their children

self-identify as transgendered or otherwise non-heterosexual. Child welfare laws already exist to protect children from parents who do not provide the necessaries of life or in any way abuse their children. “Children’s rights” vs. “Parents’ rights” is a false dichotomy.

• While some individuals and experts may argue that there is a range of genders, not everyone has to agree that there are genders other than male or female. But the freedom to so believe is a right. Neither side has the right to discriminate against the other based on varying points of view.

• In order to protect women, who are far more often the victims of sexual assault than men, those who identify as female but have a penis should not be allowed in women’s spaces such as prisons for women. [See “Gender diverse prisoners and sex-based patterns of offending”, Macdonald Laurier Institute, September 26, 2023]

• For the emotional comfort of the vast majority of people and the physical security of everyone, public washrooms should be designated for females or males according to their genitalia. For sanitary reasons washrooms for males should have urinals. Where reasonably feasible single-occupant non-gendered washrooms should also be available.

• In order to maintain fairness in athletic competition, adolescent and adult athletes who self-identify as female but have male anatomy and physiology should not be allowed to compete against women with female anatomy and physiology in sports where strength is an essential component, e.g., weight-lifting, shot-put, swimming, etc.

We intend to contact institutions involved in the issues outlined above as well as elected leaders and the media to let them know what policies and actions we support.

Lloyd Robertson