George A. Bowers Sr.: There’s something fishy about this

George Bowers Sr.

Nearly a month ago, in the March 14 edition of this newspaper, an article highlighted sexual oddities that are plaguing smallmouth bass in tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay.

Being an avid outdoorsman and an occasional fisherman, I found the article interesting and informing if not a bit disturbing. Fish biologists are understandably alarmed that in addition to premature deaths of many individuals, male fish in some rivers, including the Shenandoah, are also growing female parts. Males were found with immature eggs developing in their testes. Something is indeed very fishy about this.

Extensive research is being conducted to determine what is causing this abnormality as the feisty smallmouth is not only important to our ecosystem, but also generates $250 million a year for Virginia’s economy. Needless to say, even though their mouths may be small, this concern is not. Many are alarmed and troubled about what this change in sexual makeup will mean in future years for this freshwater fighter. Will they be able to reproduce and maintain a healthy population? If so, will they continue to guard their egg nests as all male members of the sunfish family do? Will this result in an altered genome of future populations? Many unanswered questions are motivating feverish research.

Some of the possible culprits being specifically examined include estrogen pollutants that may be finding their way into the watershed. Lawn fertilizers as well as weed killing chemicals are also under close scrutiny. So far, no direct cause has been identified even as another spring reproductive season approaches for these popular sportfish.

What is particularly intriguing to me is that all scientists agree that something is seriously wrong with this condition and they are searching for causes as well as solutions. Why is it not possible that this is perfectly normal and is occurring due to the sexual preferences of the individual fish? In the human population today, we are told that gender is a matter of choice, not biology, and that all sexual identities are valid and to be celebrated regardless of what our birth certificates say.

Unlike the fish that are unintentionally exhibiting some bisexual characteristics, a growing number of humans are altering their sexuality through chemicals, surgeries, and self-identification. One of the most prominent individuals to do so is former Olympic Decathlon gold medalist Bruce Jenner, who, since surgery, now prefers to be called Caitlyn. Although surgeons have altered his physical structure, every cell of his body still carries a Y chromosome that identifies him as a male of our specie regardless of his name or genitalia, just as these bass are positively identified as males in spite of some female characteristics. Further, while concern for these smallmouths is considered justifiable, those who express similar concern about the human condition are often ridiculed and even threatened with legal action to prevent them from voicing their opinions.

As questions linger about the health of the bass species in our rivers, creeks, and lakes, why is it not equally valid to question the impact of so-called gender reassignment and transgender self-identification within our own human family? When the history of human existence records an endless stream of sexual abuses, usually by men against women, why are laws written to keep males out of female restrooms and school locker rooms and vice versa considered discriminatory rather than protective?

While scientists struggle to save our fish, it seems we have lost our way with our own specie. Our common sense seems to have washed downstream into the ocean of political correctness. Jesus himself indicated in Matthew 19 that God created male and female and that marriage is made up of one of each. Even a basic study of biology verifies that the destiny of every specie, including our own, depends on the expression of those God-given sexualities in order to procreate and ensure its future. I pray for both sanity and civility as we wrestle with these issues of our times. In Jesus, George

George Bowers Sr. is the Senior Pastor of Antioch Church of the Brethren in Woodstock and the author of seven books including his latest book of poetry, Holy Verses. He can be reached through www.georgebowersministries.com or at gabowers@shentel.net.