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$5.7 Million in Taxpayer Funds for Study to Justify Sterilizing Children Who Are Gender Confused

Students placed a sticker on the door of a new gender-neutral bathroom at Nathan Hale High School in Seattle on Tuesday.
Elaine Thompson/Associated Press

A taxpayer-funded study launched by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is on course to conclude that “affirming” young children with gender dysphoria by providing dangerous puberty blockers and ultimately sterilizing them is both safe and necessary for them to be happy.

The study is “very much under wraps and it’s coming into its fifth and final year,” said Dr. Quentin Van Meter, an Atlanta pediatric endocrinologist who trained at Johns Hopkins University when “transsexualism” was first studied. He added that the study is:

affirming gender change with family and environmental support in children as young as five years, and using puberty blockers and cross sex hormone treatment in children at the initial onset of puberty which could be as young age 8-9 years, and then following them for only five years.

The study is titled “The Impact of Early Medical Treatment in Transgender Youth.”

Van Meter explained the study “is designed specifically to show how well they’re doing”:

There’s no control group – which is a must if you’re going to be following ethical research guidelines – and the researchers excuse themselves from having one by saying, “What are we supposed to do, let these kids kill themselves with no therapy?” And the answer is the control group should be kids in intensive counseling, because the majority of them have undercurrent problems.

Van Meter maintained those claiming to be transgender have significant underlying mental health issues that activists are desperately trying to bury.

A recent study by Dr. Lisa Littman, an assistant professor of behavioral and social sciences at Brown University, also found 87 percent of teens were reported by their parents to have “come out” as transgender after increased time spent on social media and the Internet and after “cluster outbreaks” of gender dysphoria among their groups of friends. Most of the teens who claimed to be transgender had also already been identified with at least one mental health disorder.

“Since this has all started, every single transgender patient who has come to me has come from a totally dysfunctional family,” Van Meter said. “There’s nothing normal about the environment where these children are brought up. There are emotional traumas left and right. It is so obvious that what we’re doing is painting over the trauma.”

The NIH study is being conducted by four researchers who already promote transgender affirmation therapy for children in their respective practices. In fact, the researchers are using the children from their four sites to examine “the physiological and psychosocial outcomes of existing medical treatment protocols for transgender youth with gender dysphoria.”

The NIH – which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – has seen fit to award the researchers $5.7 million in taxpayer funds for a five-year study of these children. The results are expected to give the governmental seal of approval to justify administering life-altering drugs to young children who have no way of currently understanding what their lives will be like as a result.

“It’s common practice for federal bureaucrats to design and then publicize biased studies to promote their preferred policy,” wrote Jane Robbins and Erin Tuttle, co-authors of Deconstructing the Administrative State: The Fight for Liberty, at Witherspoon Institute’s Public Discourse.

They added:

The process is simple: (1) issue requests for research proposals slanted in favor of a particular outcome, (2) fund studies that reach the expected conclusions, and (3) cite that research in subsequent studies to claim that a “growing body of evidence” favors the preferred policy.

The researchers of the study are Dr. Johanna Olson, medical director of The Center for Transyouth Health and Development at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles; Dr. Robert Garofalo, head of Adolescent Medicine at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago; Dr. Stephen Rosenthal, medical director of the Child and Adolescent Gender Center at Benioff Children’s Hospital in San Francisco; and Dr. Norman Spack, a pediatric endocrinologist affiliated with Boston Children’s Hospital.

“We are pleased to see transgender medicine taking its place on the national health agenda,” said Olson when the study was first announced.

Garofalo’s clinic, according to Chicago Magazine, is “pushing the boundaries of treatments for the growing population of transgender kids,” even as he himself admits, “[T]here haven’t been many studies on the long-term effects of estrogen on young people.”

“I wish I could tell you everything that’s going to happen, but I can’t,” Garofalo tells patients and their parents. “There’s just so much that we don’t know yet.”

Rosenthal told nbcbayarea.com that providing medical treatments at younger ages allows gender-confused children to change their sex with fewer surgeries and less cost later on in life.

“It makes it a lot easier for that person to blend in,” he said. “If you go through female puberty and you have breasts, if you go through male puberty and you have an Adam’s apple and a facial male structure, a deepened voice, all of these things are very difficult to change.”

Rosenthal’s clinic describes itself as offering “the mental health, medical, advocacy and legal expertise necessary to support a healthy transition.”

In a “Ted” talk in 2014, Spack said about children and adolescents who are gender dysphoric that “the risks of not doing anything for them not only puts all of them at risk of losing their lives to suicide, but it also says something about whether we are a truly inclusive society.”

Dr. Michael Laidlaw, an endocrinologist in Rocklin, California, who has testified before his state’s Senate Judiciary Committee, told Breitbart News he remains “floored” that physicians are buying into the notion that administering the dangerous hormones to young gender dysphoric children is safe. He observed the Endocrine Society has produced guidelines that recommend children with gender dysphoria begin to “transition” when signs of puberty are first detected.

“This can be as early as age nine or ten, based on current statistics,” Laidlaw said, adding that this means “you’re going to start blocking puberty with these powerful hormones at a very early age.”

“You’ve got a significant number of children and adolescents who are going to be treated incorrectly by this,” he explained, because the diagnostic ability to detect “true trans” children is very poor.

Laidlaw said the long-term consequences of the hormone treatments can be disastrous for current-day children who are cognitively unable to comprehend them.

“There are even more dangers to these puberty blockers, such as infertility and restricting bone growth – which puts these kids at risk for future osteoporosis,” he said. “Most of the children – in one study 100 percent of kids administered biological puberty blockers – went on to have cross-sex hormones [testosterone and estrogen) – which means you will remain sterile.”

Laidlaw added more children will be placed on these dangerous hormone treatments, even though “63 to 98 percent of children who have gender dysphoria or gender identity disorder, by the time they reach adulthood will have grown out of it.”

Like Van Meter, Laidlaw said “about 70 percent of people who identify as transgender have some form of comorbid mental health condition.”

Breitbart News reached out to NIH for comment about why researchers who already have a vested interest in a particular outcome of the study would be granted millions in taxpayer funds, and, also, why the study lacks a control group of children who simply receive counseling to help them through their mental health issues.

Bob Bock, press officer at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development at NIH responded:

The grant titled “The Impact of Early Medical Treatment in Transgender Youth” helps fill a research gap identified by the National Academy of Medicine—developing rigorous research evidence to understand the health implications of hormone treatments already in use for transgender individuals. This multi-center project studies populations of youth undergoing various treatments for gender dysphoria, or profound distress about one’s gender. The study is not administering hormone treatments. Rather, it is an observational study that is recording the outcomes of existing medical treatment protocols already in use among transgender youth.

By studying the outcomes of existing medical treatment protocols, this study will expand the evidence base available to individuals and their physicians, enabling them to make more informed treatment decisions.

“Children and adolescents who take puberty blockers cannot possibly provide informed consent for taking these medications and the resulting lifelong consequences, nor can their parents,” Laidlaw said, however. “For these reasons and more, the use of puberty blockers to stop normal puberty for gender dysphoria in children and adolescents is NOT ethical. Therefore the entire observational study is unethical.”

Robbins told Breitbart News NIH “seems to be claiming that the grantees aren’t actually administering the harmful hormones, but rather are just standing back and watching what happens when someone else does.”

“Morally and ethically, that seems to me a distinction without a difference,” she said. “Note also that NIH doesn’t address two other huge problems: that there’s no control group of children allowed to grow out of their dysphoria normally, and that the ‘longitudinal’ study lasts only five years and so won’t analyze long-term negative consequences.”

“The fix is in,” Robbins concluded.

Dr. Jane Orient, executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, emphasized to Breitbart News there is no scientific basis for the entire transgender concept.

“With all the emphasis on ‘evidence-based’ medicine, there is no evidence for salutary effects of ‘affirming’ transgenderism, and no scientific rationale for the concept of ‘being trapped in the wrong body,’” she said.

“We are subjecting our children to non-consented research – people with immature brains, i.e., less than about 25 years old are not capable of informed consent – which is unethical by definition,” Orient added. “By the principles developed at Nuremberg, it is criminal.”

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