Monday, April 05, 2021


Will 1557 save us from the anti-trans medical laws in the southern states?

Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) is…
Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
Section 1557 is the nondiscrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability in certain health programs or activities. Section 1557 builds on long-standing and familiar Federal civil rights laws: Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. The Section 1557 statute extends nondiscrimination protections to individuals participating in...
Down in the southern Republican states they are in a full court press against us.
New Anti-Trans Legislation Passed By Arkansas Senate
All Things Considered
March 30, 2021

The Arkansas Senate passed a bill that would bar access to trans healthcare for minors. NPR's Ailsa Chang talks with journalist Katelyn Burns about the wave of anti-trans legislation around the U.S.

The Arkansas Senate has passed what the ACLU calls, quote, "the most extreme anti-trans law to ever pass through a state legislature." It is now being sent to the desk of Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson, who last week signed a bill that would ban trans women and girls from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity. Here to talk with us about anti-trans legislation across the country is journalist Katelyn Burns.
CHANG: Can you just start us off by telling us a little more about this bill in Arkansas? What would it do exactly?

BURNS: Yeah. So this bill is one of many that have been introduced in conservative state legislatures all over the country, but it's the first one to pass. What it essentially does is it bans transgender minors - so anybody under the age of 18 - from being able to access trans-affirming care. So we're talking about puberty blockers for younger teens. And we're talking about hormone replacement therapy for older teens. Surgery typically is not done on teenagers. Though the bill alludes directly to surgery, that is kind of a moot point.

CHANG: And do you fully expect it to be signed by Governor Hutchinson?

BURNS: We have no reason to believe that he wouldn't sign it.

CHANG: Now, this other legislation we mentioned, the ban in Arkansas on trans women and girls competing in women's sports, came around the same time as similar restrictions in South Dakota. Can you just talk about what are the justifications that these state lawmakers are giving for restricting the rights of trans people in sports?

BURNS: So this is another outgrowth of their broader culture war against trans people. If you remember, after marriage equality was passed into law by the Supreme Court, what the religious right then did was sort of start ignoring lesbian and gay and bisexual people and focus all of their attention on trans people. So in 2016, you know, the bathroom bill in North Carolina that passed, you had all these states trying to institute bathroom bills. That effort largely spectacularly failed and actually increased Americans' knowledge and sympathy towards the trans community. So what they've done is they've moved on to more sort of fringe issues that poll better for them. And one of them happens to be the sports issue.
You know that these bills will pass and be signed into law, so how do we counter them?

Well I see two ways both involves the courts.
Doctor: This unethical Arkansas law should horrify all in medical profession
Opinion by Jack Turban
April 2, 2021

As physicians, my colleagues and I have the honor and privilege to help people through some of the most difficult times of their lives. Along with this privilege come some challenging situations. Once at three in the morning, I was paged to see a patient going through alcohol withdrawal. The moment I walked into his room, he grabbed my pager from my scrubs and threw it against the wall. He screamed homophobic slurs in my face. I was tired. My shoulders tightened with anxiety, and I steeled myself against memories of middle school bullies summoned by this patient's screaming.

I pushed through and made sure he got the medical interventions he needed. Had he not received this timely medical care, his substance use would have threatened his life. My medical training taught me to prioritize his health over my pain at his words or beliefs that homophobia like his is morally wrong. It is my job to do that. Similarly, I would expect a doctor who thinks alcohol use disorder is a "moral failing" to still offer this patient evidence-based medical care.

Sadly, not all politicians think the same way. This week, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed the so-called Medical Ethics and Diversity Act into law. The law allows a wide range of health care workers -- doctors, pharmacists and even insurance companies -- to refuse to provide non-emergency healthcare based on personal "moral" objections. This new law is dangerous and directly contradicts the professional responsibilities we have as health care providers.
This law puts doctors in the direct line of hate, they are between a rock and a hard place.

So I mentioned two ways we might counter the hate. First is the Fourteenth Amendment. I’m not a lawyer but it seems to me that the amendment says that under the law you have to treat everyone equally, well we sure as hell are not being treated equally we have been singled out for their hate.

The other way I think has more weight because of last year’s Supreme Court ruling on Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, where the court said that we are protected under “sex” in the law.

CBS News wrote this about the Supreme Court ruling…
"Judges are not free to overlook plain statutory commands on the strength of nothing more than suppositions about intentions or guesswork about expectations," Gorsuch wrote. "In Title VII, Congress adopted broad language making it illegal for an employer to rely on an employee's sex when deciding to fire that employee. We do not hesitate to recognize today a necessary consequence of that legislative choice: An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law."
I think that the same legal reasoning will apply to Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. Trump & Company stripped us out of the ACA but I think that President Biden will change it back to the way it originally was interpreted, so therefore these laws being passed down south I feel will most likely be overturned.

It will not make a difference because they know the facts but they still banned us… out of hate.
"If we want to spend our energy on this idea of fairness, I think we need to start with the real, documented problems that women face," Katie Sowers said in a clear rebuke of recent anti-trans bills.
LGBTQ Nation
By Juwan J. Holmes
April 4, 2021

Katie Sowers, the first openly LGBTQ person and the first woman coach to participate in a Super Bowl, has spoken out again about the recent efforts to ban trans people from participating in sports across the country.

She deconstructed arguments in support of such bans that are under the guise of protecting fairness in women’s sports competition. She first pointed out that sports are more than wins and losses, but also adding that people “need to start with the real, documented problems that women face” if they wish to address such concerns.

Sowers signed on to an amicus brief along with nearly 175 other athletes and sports professionals last year, expressing their support for overturning a law passed in Idaho in 2020 that bans trans girls and women from participating in sports as their gender identity.
“I think when you think of this idea in ‘fairness’ in women’s sports, I think you need to look the leader’s in women’s sports, citing those in the WNBA and other women’s sports “who are really standing up for trans athletes, and this opportunity that it gives [them].”
The Republicans don’t care about facts… this a wedge issue for them to rally their white supremacists base. That's all we are just fodder for their drive for power.

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