With at least 31 states which have passed or are considering legislation seeking to protect minors from “transgender” ideology in areas as health care and sports, governors in Indiana and Idaho signed bills into law this week outlawing harmful puberty blockers, hormone therapies, and genital surgeries for minors. Kansas lawmakers overrode their governor’s veto enacting a law that keeps biological males from competing in female sports.
With Indiana and Idaho enacting these protections there are now 13 states that have either banned or criminalized “gender-affirming care” for children. Indiana’s Senate Enrolled Act 480 prohibits physicians from prescribing medications and performing surgical procedures within the scope of affirming gender on minors. The law specifically prohibits “Any medical or surgical service that seeks to surgically alter or remove healthy physical or anatomical characteristics or features that are typical for the individual’s sex in order to instill or create physiological or anatomical characteristics that resemble a sex different from the individual’s sex … knowingly performed for the purpose of assisting an individual with a gender transition.”
“A child cannot consent to irreversible sex change surgery and Indiana will no longer allow children to take dangerous drugs with long-term consequences like puberty blockers and hormone therapies in the name of extreme gender theories,” said Indiana Sen. Mike Braun on social media. He noted that children struggling with gender receive “compassion and mental health help rather than dangerous, un-tested, unapproved drugs and irreversible surgeries.”
Idaho’s “Vulnerable Child Protection Act” goes as far as making it a felony for anyone who “knowingly authorizes” or provides “gender-affirming” health care to youth under the age of 18. Idaho follows Alabama as just the second state to make the administration of these medications, therapies, and procedures a felony.
Idaho’s bill notes the fact that these mutilating surgeries are never necessary in the first place. The bill states that “medical intervention that results in the impairment and mutilation of the reproductive organs and parts of a child is never necessary to the health of the child on whom it is performed if it is for the sole purpose of attempting to change or affirm the child’s perception of the child’s sex if that perception is inconsistent with the child’s biological sex.”
Also moving aggressively to protect youth is the Kansas state legislature who voted yesterday override Gov. Laura Kelly’s third veto and passed the “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act.” State legislators voted overwhelmingly to protect female student athletes by not allowing biological males to compete against them. Simply written the bill requires “…sports that are sponsored by public educational institutions to be designated based on biological sex.” The bill also states, “athletic teams or sports designated for females, women, or girls shall not be open to students of the male sex.”
According to the Kansas High School Athletics Association, there are 109,000 student athletes within the association, of which 11 do not identify with their biological sex.
In a public statement after the successful override, Kansas House Speaker Dan Hawkins said, “The Fairness in Women’s Sports act protects the rights of female athletes in the state by requiring that female student athletic teams only include members who are biologically female.” Hawkins further noted that like-minded lawmakers are committed to upholding the discrimination protections and fairness intended by Title IX of the federal civil rights law.
Notably, a federal judge ruled in January that West Virginia’s biological sports law was constitutional. Many of these new state laws will go into effect either this summer or on January 1, 2024.
Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “These legislative victories are encouraging and the momentum needs to continue in fighting to keep our nation’s children’s well-being, health, and privacy safe.”