Let's examine "rara avis in terris nigroque simillima cygno", a metaphor from Juvenal's 2nd century /Satires/. "As rare a bird in the earth as a black swan".
It was a polite and poetic manner of speaking to say, "No such thing".
Here, black swans *do* exist.
was *converted* from "No Such Entity Exists",
to a caution about *presuming* "No Such Entity Exists".
I want to criticise the philosophy behind the choices of the author, the choices she made in assembling her paper.
"The purpose of this study was to document and explore these observations and describe the resulting presentation of gender dysphoria, which is inconsistent with existing research literature."
It asserts that the presentations of GD in "ROGD" cases studied are inconsistent with the DSM-V, basically.
The study has been criticised for
//not actually clinically studying any of the patients//.
How does the author *know* that the GD symptoms the patients present with, vary from published literature?
The author //asked the patients' parents//.
and that shared value?
Is that //their children aren't transgender//, diagnosis or not.
The paper just wants to establish that "ROGD" /exists as a credible phenomenon/.
It treats transgender people, as if they were Black Swans.
It presumes that transgender people don't exist until one that exactly meets the criteria described prior in literature is presented.
direct observation and characterisation of patients in a studied population,
identification BY CLINICIANS of a phenomenon IN THE PATIENTS of GD presentation variant from that in the literature,
These are things that need to be controlled for, FIRST.
Is the patient sincere? Is there a reason to doubt the patient's sincerity in presentation? Are there other clinical explanations for the patient's behaviour? Are they necessarily mutually exclusive or
Practicing Clinicians have a /fiduciary duty/ to put the best interests of their patients before their own, which means treating them as individuals, and not treating them as RESEARCH SUBJECTS without their express approval.
it's IMPERATIVE that the subject NOT KNOW THAT YOU ARE TRYING TO DETERMINE THAT THEY ARE OR ARE NOT PART OF THE POPULATION
ALL KNEW THAT THE PARENTS WERE CLAIMING THEIR KIDS WERE INSINCERE
They were persuaded to retract that statement. The rationale used was that they were "pressured" into making the statement.
But here's the thing:
the paper doesn't *prove* it exists.
It doesn't *disprove* it exists.
BUT THE METHODS AND PRESUMPTIONS AND CHOICES WERE SO BAD,
THAT NEITHER CAN ANYONE ELSE EVER PROVE OR DISPROVE IT.
IS A POISON PILL THAT PREVENTS USEFUL STUDY OF THE SUBJECT IN THE FUTURE.
1: The Event is a surprise to the observer.
2: The Event has a major effect.
3: The Event is rationalised by the observer in hindsight (observer bias).
Every scientist knows this bias, is trained to minimise it, to control for it.
Lisa Littman didn't.
This paper sabotages future research in that area.
She made a Black Swan error.