The Florida Board of Medicine has put into effect a new rule prohibiting the use of puberty blockers, hormone therapies, or gender reassignment surgeries for minors under the age of 18 who say they want to change their gender identities. Trans activists and their supporters inside and outside of the medical field describe such transgender medical procedures as part of “gender-affirming care.”
Florida lawmakers are considering legislation that would codify these bans into law and make it a felony to provide any such so-called “gender-affirming” medical care to minors before their eighteenth birthday.
Left-wing progressives are in an uproar. Florida’s equivalent of New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democratic State Rep. Anna Eskamani, accused Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis of “erasing our trans babies” at a boisterous rally in Florida’s Capitol protesting the bans. “We are facing a governor who wants to commit genocide on trans people,” she said.
These are the words of an uncompromising pro-abortionist.
The transgender ideologues’ hysteria extends to the Biden administration.
“This is the first time I have seen a medical board weaponized against medical providers that are providing evidence-based, standard of care treatment,” said President Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services’ Assistant Secretary Rachel Levine, who is transgender.
Rachel Levine appeared recently at Connecticut Children’s Hospital, praising medical procedures for changing children’s gender and declaring that such medical procedures have the “highest support” of the Biden administration. “President Biden supports you. I as the Assistant Secretary for Health will support you and I talk about this topic, everywhere I go, to get the word out,” Levine said.
President Biden himself described the Florida rule banning such medical procedures for minors under the age of 18 as “close to sinful” and “cruel.” Governor Ron DeSantis tweeted in response: “It is not ‘sinful’ to prohibit the mutilation of minors. It is not acceptable for the federal government to mandate that procedures like sex change operations be allowed for kids.”
President Biden has a rather twisted view of what is “close to sinful” and “cruel.” This Catholic president believes that killing fully formed babies in the womb is a basic constitutional right while protecting minors from the potentially harmful life-altering effects of hormonal and surgical gender reassignment treatments is “close to sinful” and “cruel.”
“It’s not like, you know, a kid wakes up one morning,” President Biden declared, “and says, ‘You know, I decided I wanted to become a man,’ or ‘I want to become a woman’… I mean, what are they thinking about here?”
What is President Biden himself thinking about here other than to satisfy a portion of the Democratic Party’s left-wing progressive base devoted to extreme transgender ideology?
Maybe kids do not wake up one morning suddenly ready to change genders. But social media, peer pressure, and over-zealous teachers and administrators who push confused, impressionable children to act out their “preferred” gender in school while hiding it from their parents take their toll after a while.
Eighteen is the minimum age to vote, buy a gun, open a bank account, or even to adopt a pet from most shelters and rescues. In the bluest of blue states such as New York and California, tattooing minors is prohibited. However, President Biden thinks it is “cruel” to prevent minors under 18, whose brains are still developing, from having risky hormone treatments and gender transition surgery to match their preferred gender identity for the moment.
The Florida Board of Medicine, which President Biden and transgender militants detest for banning gender-altering medical treatments for minors, “was established to ensure that every physician practicing in this state meets minimum requirements for safe practice.” The Board of Medicine’s fifteen members consist of twelve experienced physicians in good standing in Florida who are state residents, and three state resident members who represent Florida consumers.
“The chief point of agreement among all of the experts — and I must emphasize this — is that there is a pressing need for additional, high-quality clinical research,” said Dr. David A. Diamond, who was the chair of the Board last year when the new rule was approved.
Trans activists and their supporters do not want to wait for more definitive scientific research. They brazenly claim the science is settled that hormonal and surgical treatments provide overwhelming benefits, with negligible risk, to kids questioning their gender identity. To the contrary, there is no robust scientific evidence to date that supports the liberal use of such far-reaching medical treatments on minors.
Serious clinical questions remain unanswered as to the adverse, even irreversible, health effects of long-term cross-sex hormones and gender reassignment surgery on minors, for example. There is scant, rigorously gathered data comparing the percentage of gender confused boys and gender confused girls who eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty versus the percentages of those who do not.
Doctors who rush ahead with potentially life-altering medical treatments for minors wanting to change their gender identity are doing so without any prior comprehensive assessment of their patients. Does the minor have untreated mental health issues that should be addressed first to make sure that taking the prospective patient’s declared gender identity preference at face value does not mask serious underlying psychological problems? Was the prospective patient’s declared gender identity preference unduly influenced by external factors, such as social media, peers, or school authority figures?
Scientific uncertainty regarding gender altering medical procedures for minors, including the potential for long-term, irreversible effects, led the Florida Department of Health to issue this statement on April 20, 2022:
“Based on the currently available evidence, encouraging mastectomy, ovariectomy, uterine extirpation, penile disablement, tracheal shave, the prescription of hormones which are out of line with the genetic make-up of the child, or puberty blockers, are all clinical practices which run an unacceptably high risk of doing harm.”
Florida is adhering to the same “first do no harm” approach that Western and Northern European countries follow. According to a report entitled “Reassigned,” these countries reject the “gender-affirming care” model for medically treating minors with gender identity issues that transgender ideologues have succeeded in moving towards the mainstream in the United States.
“In a sharp departure from the gender affirmation model employed in the United States,” the report stated, “these countries now discourage automatic deference to a child’s self-declarations on the grounds that the risks outweigh the benefits, while also calling for months-long psychotherapy sessions to address co-occurring mental health problems…The different approaches between the United States and Western and Northern Europe lead to a concerning reality: In the U.S., much younger patients are eligible for invasive surgeries and/or potentially irreversible and medically harmful dispensation of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.”
Gender transition clinics and doctors who charge ahead with potentially life-altering medical treatments for minors claiming they want to change their gender identity are playing Russian roulette with their patients’ long-term health and well-being. Treating impressionable minors with puberty-blocking drugs, sex hormones, and surgeries in the absence of strong scientific evidence of the efficacy and long-term risks of the selected treatment is, to use President Biden’s words, “close to sinful” and “cruel.”