Maine legislators were considering a radical bill that threatened parental rights by giving courts “temporary emergency jurisdiction” of minors who seek “transgender” medical interventions – against their parents’ wishes.
Thankfully, L.D. 1735, the so-called “Act to Safeguard Gender-affirming Health Care,” got skunked, failing in a Judiciary Committee vote of 12-0. As previously reported by the Daily Citizen, the bill would have led to irreparable harm for vulnerable, confused children.
The Christian Civic League of Maine, a Focus on the Family-allied organization, was thankful to see the measure fail. The organization labeled the legislation “The Transgender Trafficking Bill” and stated:
In Maine and now nationally, people are seeing what LD 1735 would have accomplished. It would have made us a sanctuary state for gender confusion, encouraged trafficking and allowed the state to deny parental rights. Maine people stood up and defeated the bill.
CCL Maine thanked the legislators and Christian and conservative groups who opposed the measure and testified against it. Opponents included the Catholic Diocese of Portland, Maine Right To Life, Concerned Women of Maine, and Students For Life, groups that “value and seek to protect life.”
CCL Maine President Carroll Conley submitted testimony against the measure, noting that European nations were backtracking on drugs, hormones and surgeries for children with sexual identity issues – unlike the United States, which continues to disfigure and mutilate these troubled and confused children. He explained:
Countries like Sweden went down the same path regarding minors self-diagnosing and receiving chemical and surgical treatment without parental approval years ago. They have gone through analyzing this approach and are presently greatly restricting it or abandoning it.
Conley noted that the legislation “ignores the bedrock principle of parental rights” and cited negative consequences if it were passed:
Another grave concern of mine is what I believe is an unintended consequence in regard to making these minors, many of whom are deeply troubled, vulnerable to predators and traffickers. This is undeniable when we look in states and countries that have gone down this path.
This bill IS absolutely irresponsible for not addressing how to protect these young people from those that would do them harm [emphasis in original].
Dr. Laura Haynes, psychologist and board member for the International Federation for Therapeutic and Counselling Choice, also opposed the legislation, saying that a parent who lost custody of a child in a different state could take him or her to Maine and receive “interventions that can sterilize them.”
Haynes said that most young children grow out of gender dysphoria, adding that “Gender affirmation – whether social or medical – is a path of serious and lasting harms.”
Her testimony stated:
Gender affirmation is built on a viewpoint that has never been scientifically substantiated that a gender identity that differs from a person’s sex is a biological thing, is who a person biologically is. It neglects psychiatric causes.
It would be dangerous and scientifically unfounded for politicians to send children down a medical conveyor belt based on a viewpoint that affirmation is in the best interest of a child, a viewpoint on which professionals themselves worldwide are not in agreement.
Conley encouraged concerned individuals to speak out and involve themselves in political and cultural engagement, saying concerted efforts by different groups caused “the other side … the majority, to back down.” He said:
Imagine what would happen in Maine if we could replicate this regularly. You, the people are so important. Prayers and getting involved made yesterday an amazing day in Maine. Our kids and all USA kids are a bit safer today.
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Focus on the Family exists to help families, and that includes help navigating the issues of homosexuality and transgenderism. Focus offers a free, one-time counseling consultation with a licensed or pastoral counselor. To request a counseling consultation, call 1-855-771-HELP (4357) or fill out our Counseling Consultation Request Form.
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