The White House hosted a “Pride Month Reception” where President Biden signed an executive order, “A Proclamation on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, And Intersex Pride Month, 2022.”
The far-reaching order tells federal agencies to oppose state laws protecting girls and women’s sports, affirming parental rights in education, and keeping children from being taught homosexual and gender ideology in public schools.
It also attempts to stop any efforts to help children, teens and adults with same-sex attractions or sexual identity confusion live according to a biblical sexual ethic, a direct threat to freedom of speech, religious freedom, client autonomy and self-direction, and parental rights.
The executive order states:
An onslaught of dangerous anti-LGBTQI+ legislation has been introduced and passed in States across the country, targeting transgender children and their parents and interfering with their access to health care. …
Today and every day, my Administration stands with every LGBTQI+ American in the ongoing struggle against intolerance, discrimination, and injustice. We condemn the dangerous State laws and bills that target LGBTQI+ youth.
A fact sheet accompanying the order stated:
Over 300 anti-LGBTQI+ laws have been introduced in state legislatures over the past year, and many of them specifically target transgender children and their parents by banning access to medical care and support at school.
This refers to state legislation that protects girls and women’s sports from biological males with sexual identity confusion; laws that safeguard children from destructive and harmful puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries; and laws that affirm parental rights in education and keep children from confusing and sexualized messages in schools.
The order charges the Departments of Education and Health and Human Services (HHS) with creating “sample policies for states” related to education and medical interventions that attempt to “transition” children into the opposite sex – or some alternative “gender.”
The administration also targeted “so-called ‘conversion therapy,’” which it called “a discredited and dangerous practice that seeks to suppress or change the sexual orientation or gender identity of LGBTQI+ people.”
The executive order encouraged the Secretaries of State, Treasury and HHS to ensure that federal funds are not spent helping those struggling with their sexuality to live according to a Biblical sexual ethic and to embrace their bodily reality. In addition, the Federal Trade Commission was told to consider whether helping people in this way is “an unfair or deceptive practice” deserving of “consumer warnings or notices.”
Such actions would directly threaten churches, ministries, counselors, bookstores, pastors and parents who help people with unwanted homosexual and transgender attractions, identities, and behaviors.
Focus on the Family does not do “conversion therapy” – but then nobody does, because it’s not a thing. It doesn’t exist. It’s a meaningless term created by those who oppose leaving homosexuality or transgenderism.
But we do strongly support client autonomy and self-determination, meaning people have the right to engage in ethical therapy that is in line with their goals and values. Such work with trained pastoral counselors or licensed mental health professionals is often invaluable in helping people find freedom from unwanted homosexuality or sexual identity confusion.
Reaction from Christians, conservatives and women’s organizations was swift and strong.
Dr. Mahri Irvine, Executive Director for Women’s Liberation Front, a radical feminist organization, and Craig DeRoche, President & CEO for Family Policy Alliance published a joint statement opposing the order. They said the order attacked them for their beliefs, explaining:
We’re ‘bullies’ simply because we believe Americans should have access to ethical mental healthcare, that girls’ sports should be reserved for girls, and that children should not be the guinea pigs in the political agenda behind gender theory.
The two organizations also opposed the administration’s support for drugs, hormones and surgeries for young girls:
The President’s plan for a young girl facing gender dysphoria is a one-way street—she should undergo unnecessary, life-altering, and permanent medical procedures designed to make her more ‘masculine’ and leave her sterile before she even thinks about whether she might start a family. This is not health care.
It is inappropriate “to label young children—who do not think about sexual behavior or orientation—as ‘LGBTQI,’” adding, “This directly contributes to the sexualization of children.”
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Photo from Reuters.