Extreme ideas about '"changing" gender have "infiltrated" society and are pushing children down a path which threatens their mental health, a columnist has warned.
Sarah Vine said some adults in the worlds of medicine, politics and education have bowed to transsexual activists "for fear of being branded as 'backward.'"
The result, she suggested, is that an increasing number of children are questioning their identity.
Vine made the comments as a guidebook aimed at children as young as seven claimed the phrase "boys and girls" excludes those who are "gender diverse."
Can I Tell You About Gender Diversity? is backed by Educate & Celebrate, a group that has received financial support from the government and praise from Ofsted.
She also noted that Childline had reported a spike in the number of children using its services over gender concerns.
"If there is a genuine increase in gender-fluidity among children, I believe it's entirely man-made," Vine wrote in the Daily Mail.
While acknowledging that some children may "genuinely feel they are in the wrong body," she expressed concerns that "the whole conversation now takes place within a rigid structure constructed by the LGBTQ lobby."
Vine continued: "Ideas that, until recently, were considered at best fanciful, at worst extreme, seem to have infiltrated traditionally sober institutions" such as medicine and education.
She gave an example of a girl at a secondary school who was given a detention because she did not use the "correct" term to describe her own sex.
But the columnist said that instead of detention, the girl should have been rewarded for swimming against the tide.
Vine wrote that the pro-trans propaganda is "threatening the sanity of—and, yes, I'm going to say it—normal children."
She added: "Yes, there must be compassion for the very few who experience gender confusion.
"But there must also be common sense that this is not something that affects the majority of children."
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