Update: On Friday, March 24, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear vetoed the bill referenced in this article. Christians called on the legislature to override the veto, and today, March 29, the legislature did so. The vote in the Senate was 29-8, and the vote in the House was 76-23.
The states of Missouri and Kentucky are taking action to restrict gender transition procedures on minors.
Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey (R) stated his office will file an emergency ruling to limit minors’ ability to undergo controversial gender transition procedures, such as the use of cross-sex hormones, puberty blockers and certain surgeries.
“The FDA has said that puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones are not approved for these types of procedures and these types of treatments,” Bailey said. “We know that they cause blindness, brain swelling [and] a loss of bone density.” Bailey recently spoke of the procedures’ underlying dangers on “Washington Watch with Tony Perkins.” “And we know for a fact that places like Sweden have said that we have to abandon these types of medications and ultimate surgeries because the risks outweigh the benefits.”
The new regulation will require minors to have an 18-month-long waiting period, at least 15 one-hour therapy sessions and treatment of any mental illnesses before a gender transition procedure. In addition, the patient must resolve any existing mental health conditions ahead of the procedure and take a yearly evaluation afterward.
The rules were announced one month after a whistleblower reported staff misconduct at The Washington University Transgender Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, saying staff were allegedly dispensing experimental drugs on children, including many with existing mental health conditions. The whistleblower said this sometimes occurred against the parents’ wishes or worsened the child’s health.
“If even 10% of [the St. Louis Children’s Hospital] allegations are true, this is nothing short of child abuse,” Bailey said, adding that other Missouri clinics offering gender transition services are also a concern. “There’s a clandestine, shadowy industry for gender mutilation of these young children, and we’re going to put a stop to it.”
Last week, the Kentucky legislature passed even stricter regulations (SB 150) to ban gender transition procedures.
The finalized version of SB 150 acknowledges a parent’s right to know their child’s change of gender, sets standards for sex education curricula, restricts the opposite sex from entering student locker rooms and bathrooms, and prohibits and penalizes gender transition procedures on any person under the age of 18.
Additionally, the bill includes the right to free speech, declaring, “A local school district shall not require school personnel or students to use pronouns for students that do not conform to that particular student’s biological sex.”
The bill will next be presented to Gov. Andy Beshear (D), who criticized the legislation during a March 2 press conference. “Whether it’s the American Medical Association or Trevor Project, all of the authority on this suggests that these types of bills will cause an increase in suicide for Kentucky’s teens. I can’t support anything that could cost the life of one of our Kentucky teens.”
But medical expert Jennifer Bauwens of Family Research Council, in an analysis of current research, concludes: “Radical physiological treatments to treat the psychological condition of gender dysphoria have serious negative side effects, up to and including permanent sterilization. None of these procedures have been shown to improve the patient’s mental health.”
In addition, an increasing number of young adults who have undergone these procedures without informed consent are suing medical providers for their deceptive manner or citing physical or physiological harm.
Since 2021, eight other states have taken legislative or executive action to limit these procedures: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Dakota, Tennessee and Utah.
Photo: Stepan Popov/Alamy Stock Photo