KISS Superstar Paul Stanley Calls Child Mutilation ‘A Sad and Dangerous Fad’
Paul Stanley, co-founder and frontman of the iconic hard rock band KISS, recently stepped outside of the musical lane and gave his two cents about a social issue: gender transition surgery on minors. In his tweet posted Sunday that he titled “My Thoughts On What I’m Seeing,” the musician deemed parents normalizing sex changes for children “a sad and dangerous fad.” His “thoughts” raised an array of rather controversial responses across several social media platforms.
“There is a BIG difference between teaching acceptance and normalizing and even encouraging participation in a lifestyle that confuses young children into questioning their sexual identification as though some sort of game and then parents in some cases allow it,” he boldly claimed in his post. “There ARE individuals who as adults may decide reassignment is their needed choice but turning this into a game or parents normalizing it as some sort of natural alternative or believing that because a little boy likes to play dress up in his sister’s clothes or a girl in her brother’s, we should lead them steps further down a path that’s far from the innocence of what they are doing.”
Although Stanley did not explicitly condemn all gender transitions in his statement, he made the case that children have no real sense of sexuality or sexual experiences, and therefore responsibility falls to adults. He advocated for the safety of children by calling out adults who “mistakenly confuse teaching acceptance” with normalizing reaffirming surgeries “that has been a struggle for those truly affected.”
“I think it is particularly meaningful when people from mainstream culture take positions that are often mischaracterized as right-wing positions,” said Joseph Backholm, senior fellow for Biblical Worldview and Strategic Engagement at Family Research Council. “When people who are obviously not radical, religious, right-wing, extremists take the same position, it weakens [the Left’s] argument significantly.”
While some have criticized Stanley’s stance, most have expressed appreciation for his candidness, especially as a high-profile celebrity.
“So well said. Protect children from mentally unwell adults who think gender can be changed,” conservative author and political commentator Candace Owens commented on Stanley’s Instagram post.
Meanwhile, others have had a less supportive response. Althea Legaspi from Rolling Stone, a magazine that covers music, film, TV, and political news from a decidedly left-wing perspective, published an article reporting Stanley’s post but engaged his statement with some opposing arguments. While Legaspi acknowledged it is “unclear what specifically prompted Stanley to make the statement,” she claimed his points “conflated sexuality and gender identity, which develop independently.” Legaspi went as far as to reference an article published by Mayo Clinic that encourages parents to talk to their children about “gender identity and expression.” “Stanley’s statement comes in the wake of a slew of anti-trans legislation taking root nationwide,” Legaspi concluded.
Stanley is not the first celebrity to speak up regarding the rise of transgenderism in America. Despite LGBTQ activists’ condemnation of Dave Chappelle’s album version of “The Closer,” the comedian “scored a Grammy nomination” that had “debuted last year as a Netflix special.” In the Netflix special, Chappelle “[sought] a ceasefire with the LGBTQ establishment, but not before he fire[d] off a few jokes in their direction, including one about transgender vaginas.”
To this day, author of the “Harry Potter” phenomenon J.K. Rowling is still facing backlash from the Left for posting a notorious tweet in 2019. Rowling had expressed her support of Maya Forstater, who had been fired for claiming that transgender women could not change their biological sex. Although the author scarcely engages in interviews, she defended her quote in a Megan Phelps-Roper podcast.
“When I first became interested in, and then deeply troubled by, what I saw as a cultural movement that was illiberal in its methods and questionable in its ideas, I absolutely knew that if I spoke out, many people who love my books would be deeply unhappy with me,” Rowling stated. “I believe, absolutely, that there is something dangerous about this movement and that it must be challenged.”
Although they understood the potential consequences of speaking out, celebrities like Rowling and Stanley have used their influential position to vocalize their opinions regarding controversial topics. As Backholm noted, “Courage is contagious, so seeing other people do the right thing even when it is risky gives other people permission to do the same. We need the courage to stand alone, but it’s okay to recognize that it’s easier not to. Regardless of what decisions we make, our decisions influence what other people do as well.”