Georgia Representative’s Bill Makes Treating Kids for Gender Transition a Felony

doctor with scalpel
Getty Images

Georgia State Representative Ginny Ehrhart is taking aim at the medical profession and its role in giving children life-altering, gender-changing treatment by making it a felony to engage in the controversial practice.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) reported on the legislation, which the Republican Cobb County lawmaker said “aims to protect children from having irreversible procedures done when they are young.”

The AJC noted that current state law requires a parent to consent to surgery, or for a minor to be prescribed medication, and said:

While the bill is still being drafted, Ehrhart said Georgia medical providers who perform surgeries or administer or prescribe medications that assist minors with gender transition could be charged with a felony. The legislation would not affect doctors working with adults who seek to undergo gender transition.

“We’re talking about children that can’t get a tattoo or smoke a cigar or a cigarette in the state of Georgia but can be castrated and get sterilized,” Ehrhart said.

“Ehrhart last year defeated Democratic opponent Jen Slipakoff, who often spoke of her transgender daughter during campaign events,” AJC reported.

Homosexual rights activists oppose the bill.

“Jeff Graham, the executive director of the LGBTQ rights organization Georgia Equality, called Ehrhart’s proposal ‘shameful,’” AJC reported.

“This legislation would criminalize decisions that are made carefully within families in consultation with medical professionals and mental health professionals,” said Graham, who claims altering prepubescent children is lifesaving.

“Supporting children in recognizing their gender identity is not only humane, it saves lives and strengthens families,” Graham said.

The AJC reported that procedures banned if the bill becomes law would include “mastectomy, vasectomy, castration and other forms of genital mutilization” for the purpose of gender transition. 

“Puberty-blocking drugs to stop or delay normal puberty and cross-sex hormone therapy,” would also be banned as treatment for children.

“The removal of otherwise healthy or non-diseased body parts from minor children would also be prohibited,” a press release Ehrhart issued said.

“Ginny Ehrhart said she was motivated to draft the bill in response to a battle between divorced parents in Texas over a 7-year-old child whose mother says identifies as a girl,” the AJC reported. “A judge last week ruled that the parents would continue to make joint decisions about the child.”

Ehrhart also said, “There may be some implication for the responsibility of the parent to subject the child to this sort of dangerous medical intervention.”

In the press release, Ehrhart quoted an Atlanta-based pediatric endocrinologist, Dr. Quentin Van Meter, who agrees children should be protected from “medical experimentation based on wishful social theory.”

“These children are suffering from a psychological condition without biologic basis,” Van Meter said. “Using the bludgeon of threatened suicide as justification is first of all cruel, and secondly, not supported by valid published studies.”

Van Meter is president of the American College of Pediatricians.

The AJC tracked down a doctor who runs a “transition practice.” Dr. Izzy Lowell said that 25 percent of patients he has treated at his clinic, dubbed Queer Med, are minors.

Follow Penny Starr on Twitter

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.