Bills Restricting Treatment For Transgender Youth Could Have Unintended ConsequencesThe Republicans don’t care about lives. They put their religious dogma above the lives of children.
NPR - All Things Considered
April 7, 2021
NPR's Ari Shapiro speaks with Dr. Joshua Safer, the executive director at Mount Sinai's Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery, about how puberty blockers go beyond transgender care.
SHAPIRO: Puberty blockers are not only used for trans kids. They are also prescribed for some cancers and for young people with adrenal issues or early puberty.
Dr. Joshua Safer is executive director at Mount Sinai's Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery in New York City. And he told me supporters of these bills are wrong to claim that puberty blockers are irreversible.
JOSHUA SAFER: The point of puberty blockers is that they're a conservative option and that they are reversible. Puberty blockers are used in a number of medical situations, specifically so that hormones can be adjusted to a certain degree, and then they can be stopped, and things will revert to how they were.
SHAPIRO: And how often do doctors prescribe these medicines for kids - or for that matter, adults - who are not transgender?
SAFER: These medications are not super commonly used, but they certainly are used for other indications. The origins of what we call puberty blockers relative to kids are literally for delaying puberty for kids who have puberty earlier than would make sense for them socially. And so we have some experience with that.
SAFER: Anytime a state government tries to make a law around health care, it makes me nervous. I'm worried that there will be unintended consequences. There will be people who will be using these medications for other purposes who will be challenged. And certainly, with the large numbers of legislatures involved, the chance for error seems high to me.
SAFER: The statistics about people dying from puberty blockers are false. I'm trying to envision where the confusion even lies. When we use these medications for transgender kids as well as for kids with precocious puberty, they're incredibly safe. That's the reason why they are the conservative go-to medication for these kids. These medications are used for treating very severe prostate cancer, including those who are likely to die from prostate cancer, and I suspect that that's where the statistic for many people dying taking these medications comes from.
This isn’t about protecting trans youth, this is all about control and political gain.
It Wasn’t About Bathrooms, and It’s Not About Women’s SportsThe Alliance Defending Freedom is behind the lawsuit here Connecticut against trans athletes. The ADF is listed as a hate organization by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Anti-transgender organizations want to use the machinery of the government to impose gender roles on everyone.
By Mark Joseph Stern
April 07, 2021
On Monday, three Republican state senators in North Carolina introduced the Youth Health Protection Act, a perverse title for a bill that imperils youth health. The measure would prohibit all gender-affirming health care for children and adults under the age of 21. It also requires all “government agents,” including school officials, to report a child’s “gender dysphoria” or “gender nonconformity” to their parents—effectively requiring schools to out LGBTQ students. By Wednesday, the act had drawn four additional Republican cosponsors, meaning a full quarter of the North Carolina Senate’s Republican caucus is now sponsoring it.
The Youth Health Protection Act is the latest in a spate of anti-trans bills that have emerged in state legislatures over the last few months, all of which seek to wield the machinery of the government to impose rigid gender norms, with severe penalties for all who dare defy them. The bills all closely resemble one another, which should not be not surprising since many of them were ghostwritten by the same organization, the Alliance Defending Freedom, which has spent years combatting both reproductive rights and gay equality, including birth control access and the legalization of homosexuality. The Youth Health Protection Act is the logical outgrowth of this ideology, but it is not, by any stretch, its endpoint.
The Youth Health Protection Act is the latest in a spate of anti-trans bills that have emerged in state legislatures over the last few months, all of which seek to wield the machinery of the government to impose rigid gender norms, with severe penalties for all who dare defy them. The bills all closely resemble one another, which should not be not surprising since many of them were ghostwritten by the same organization, the Alliance Defending Freedom, which has spent years combatting [sic] both reproductive rights and gay equality, including birth control access and the legalization of homosexuality. The Youth Health Protection Act is the logical outgrowth of this ideology, but it is not, by any stretch, its endpoint.
In reality, this putative problem does not exist. There is simply no evidence that transgender women are dominating student sports and denying cisgender women the benefits that come with athletic excellence, like scholarships. Many states, including California, have long allowed trans athletes to participate alongside cisgender girls, and their policies have not diminished cisgender students’ ability to compete and win. ADF’s crusade against trans athletes has no basis in reality or science. Major athletic bodies, including the NCAA, oppose them.These bills are meant just for one to get votes from the Republican base, they are playing to their conservative Christian base.
If the Youth Health Protection Act passes out of the legislature, North Carolina’s Democratic governor will undoubtedly veto it. But these anti-LGBTQ bills build on each other. Soon, another state will consider outlawing gender-affirming care not just for youth or young adults, but for everyone. Schools will introduce harsher and harsher policies designed to identify and discriminate against students who do not perfectly match a cramped conception of gender roles. The government will insinuate itself into parents’ relationship with their children, children’s relationships with their bodies, and LGBTQ adults’ attempts to live authentic and fulfilling lives. ADF’s ascendant ideology demands nothing less. Did anyone really think this was going to stop with bathrooms?You can be assured that even if the courts strike down all of these bills, the Republicans will try to find another way to attack us so they play to their white supremacist Christian base.