2/15/18 – Richmond, VA – Virginia House of Delegates 2018.
Photo credit: Amanda Maglione

Why should you care about the trans issue? Why not just let people do what they want? Here’s a good reason: The State is taking kids away from parents.

It’s already happening. Parents are being stripped of their parental rights because they will not use their child’s preferred name/pronouns or consent to “gender affirmation care.” Think about it. If the only way to help trans people is to affirm their identities, then those who do not affirm them are responsible for harming them. In the same way the State will not allow you to physically harm your child, they will not allow you to emotionally and medically harm your child by denying them “life-saving” gender care.

You may have recently heard that Virginia Democrat congresswoman, Elizabeth Guzman, plans to reintroduce a bill she first proposed in 2020 that would amend the state’s definition of child abuse to include a parent who “threatens to create or inflict, or allows to be created or inflicted upon such child a physical or mental injury on the basis of the child’s gender identity or sexual orientation.”

Many are incorrectly reporting that the bill criminalizes parents who refuse to affirm their child’s gender identity. Many news outlets have reported that such parents could be jailed and lose their parental rights. Guzman herself denies this. Indeed, when you read the text of the bill, it mentions nothing about the penalties for such parents. However, if other forms of child abuse can result in a parent being jailed or losing custody of their child, then the same would apply here.

The million dollar question is what constitutes a “mental injury”? The bill does not spell it out. It is so broad and fuzzy that it would justify all sorts of parental behaviors as child abuse. A boy whose parents refuse to call him by his female name, refuse to use his preferred pronouns, refuse to give him puberty blockers or home treatment, etc., could claim that his parents are causing a mental injury to him. “Transphobic” attitudes are routinely connected to harming trans people. For example, those who oppose “gender affirmation” are routinely held responsible for trans suicides. It is entirely plausible that a parent who does not affirm their child’s gender identity claims or medical transition will be accused of endangering their child’s mental health, not to mention their life. So while specific punishments are not spelled out in the bill, and while the bill does not specifically say that refusing to use preferred pronouns or consent to medical transition constitutes mental injury, the courts could easily interpret such fuzzy language in that way. And that’s the intent. That’s the purpose.

While this bill will not pass, it reveals the direction that the Democrats are moving in. If we don’t stand up to this nonsense now, parents who do not affirm the delusions of their transgender child will be prosecuted and will lose their parental rights in the near future. It’s just a matter of time unless we stand up and fight against it now. We can’t be silent. We must fight for our children and our parental rights.