Idaho Moves to Make Transgender Surgeries for Children a Felony
State moves one step closer to outlawing sex-change operations for minors
Idaho has moved one step closer to making it a felony to put children through life-altering sex-change surgeries.
Lawmakers in the state are seeking to outlaw transgender medical procedures for minors, which would include drug treatments and gender reassignment operations.
However, the move is causing outrage among woke LGBTQ advocates, who are campaigning against the legislation.
After being passed by a House committee on Tuesday, the bill goes to a full state House vote.
If passed, it would make it illegal to prescribe hormones or puberty blockers or perform sex-change surgeries on minors.
The bill says anyone caught breaking the law could be punished by life in prison.
Republican State Rep. Bruce Skaug sponsored the bill and said that instead of seeking irreversible surgery, children experiencing gender dysphoria should seek mental health treatment instead.
“It’s a bill to get proper treatment and to prevent them from lifelong, permanent decisions that will make them sterile and mutilate their bodies,” he explained.
“If we do not allow minors to get a tattoo, drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, sign a legal contract, why would we allow them to go through these physical mutilations because of their feelings at the time,” Skaug said.
The legislation would be an amendment to a previously passed law that bans child genital mutilation.
Billy Burleigh, a former transgender person, supported the bill because he had undergone transitional surgery he later regretted.
"Every time I looked in the mirror, I saw a man staring back at me," Burleigh said.
"I tried hard to resolve the conflict, but I couldn't.
"The bottom line, the therapist and the medical community was wrong in my case."
The legislation makes exceptions for rare cases of birth defects or chromosomal disorders.
The Human Rights Campaign opposed the bill and called on the state Senate to vote against the ban.
"Every kid in Idaho deserves the chance to grow up feeling safe and respected for who they are," the organization said in a lengthy statement.
"Denying someone medically-necessary health care simply because you don’t approve of who they are is textbook discrimination."
If the state passes the bill, Idaho will become the fourth state to outlaw such treatments for minors.
Arkansas, Tennessee, and Texas have all passed similar legislation and those are facing challenges in court.