HARRISBURG, Pa. — A man born as Richard who now identifies as Rachel, and who has officially led Pennsylvania’s Department of Health as secretary since 2018, is being broadcast on television screens across the commonwealth on a daily basis as he provides regular briefings on the status of COVID-19 in the Keystone state, exhorting residents on taking care of their physical and mental health.
“Your job right now is to stay calm, stay safe and please stay at home,” Levine said in a press conference on Monday, wearing a scarf, black dress with Mary Jane shoes, and nail polish.
“As our commonwealth moves forward through this, it is important to note that there are also mental health resources available,” he added. “If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, contact the Crisis Text Line …”
Levine is a pediatrician who founded the Division of Adolescent Medicine and Eating Disorders at Penn State Children’s Hospital on the campus of the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. A graduate of Harvard and Tulane University, he obtained fellowships in pediatrics and adolescent medicine at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York before making the move to Pennsylvania to work at the Penn State College of Medicine.
“Levine … has long focused on the connection between mental and physical health,” NBC News reports.
“I have always been interested in patients with eating disorders because it really is this medical-behavioral health intersection,” he also told Lancaster Online, outlining that when he worked at Penn State he “would see patients and try to help teens and young adults and their families.”
In 2015, Levine became the physician general and was named acting secretary of health in July 2017. He was confirmed as secretary by the Pennsylvania Senate the following year without a single objection from Republicans or Democrats.
“One of the things I’m most proud of is that I was unanimously confirmed by the Senate,” Levine told NBC, stating that he met with most of the lawmakers personally. “[They] judged me strictly on my professional qualifications.”
Writing on the opioid crisis, medical marijuana, adolescent medicine, eating disorders and “LGBT medicine,” Levine is also a professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at the Penn State College of Medicine. He was named the grand marshal of the Philadelphia Pride Parade in 2015 and is on the board of the homosexual and transgender advocacy group Equality Pennsylvania.
According to the Washington Post, Levine, now 61, began seeing a therapist nearly 20 years ago after struggling with transgender feelings from his youth. He played football and hockey in an all-male private school and went on to marry and have children.
“Boy, did I have a midlife crisis,” he said of his 40s during a speech in which he emphasized support for youth who struggle with gender identity.
In 2007, at the age of 48, Levine decided to grow his hair long. In 2011, he officially began identifying as a woman and changed his name to Rachel.
In 2016, while serving as physician general for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Levine told CBS 21 that it is possible that gender incongruity begins in the womb — although acknowledging that data was inconclusive.
“Because of hormonal effects in utero, the brain has a gender identity which is different from the sex the child was born as,” he said. “If you look at the brain scans of a transgender woman, such as myself, then those scans, even before medical treatment, before hormones, [they] tend to look female.”
“It hasn’t been 100 percent proven,” Levine added, “and science continuously is advancing, and we need to learn more, but that is the current theory of why individuals might be transgender.”
As previously reported, Christians believe that transgenderism isn’t just a medical or mental condition but primarily a spiritual issue — one that stems from the same predicament all men everywhere face without Christ.
In Matthew 19:4, Jesus noted that “He which made them at the beginning made them male and female.”
The Bible teaches that all are born with the Adamic sin nature, having various inherent feelings and inclinations that are contrary to the law of God, and being utterly incapable of changing by themselves.
It is why Jesus came: to “save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).
Scripture outlines that Jesus came to be the propitiation for men’s sins (1 John 2:2; 1 John 4:10), a doctrine in Christianity known as substitutionary atonement, and to save men from the wrath of God for their violations against His law (Romans 4:25, Romans 5:9, Romans 5:16), a doctrine known as justification.
The Bible also teaches about regeneration, as in addition to sparing guilty men from eternal punishment, Christ sent his Holy Spirit to make those who would repent and believe the gospel new creatures in the here and now, with new desires and an ability to do what is pleasing in the sight of God by His indwelling and empowerment (Ezekiel 11:19, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Titus 3:5).
1 Corinthians 15:45 states, “The first man, Adam, became a living soul. The last Adam (Jesus) became a life-giving spirit.”