A leading medical ethics journal faced fierce backlash online after publishing an article suggesting that parents lose their authority to manage their transgender children’s medical decisions.
In an article, titled “LGBT testimony and the limits of trust” published last month in the Journal of Medical Ethics, Dr. Maura Priest, a philosophy professor and bioethicist at Arizona State University, wrote that parents should lose their “veto power” in most “transition-related paediatric care”:
If the medical community is to take LGBT testimony seriously (as they should) then it is no longer the job of physicians to do their own weighing of the costs and benefits of transition-related care. Assuming the patient is informed and competent, then only the patient can make this assessment, because only the patient has access to the true weight of transition-related benefits. Moreover, taking LGBT patient testimony seriously also means that parents should lose veto power over most transition-related paediatric care.
In the paper’s pre-publication draft, Priest states, “Guardian veto power over identify-affirming care [results] in injustice whenever such power means one trans child is denied the care that another receives.”
“Frustrating a trans person’s desire to affirm identity is harmful, i.e., in tension with non-maleficence,” she adds.
The essay, published in the monthly peer-reviewed journal, drew backlash from many online.
“What do parents know?” mocked television and online personality Laura Lynn Tyler Thompson.
What do parents know? https://t.co/kv5Jy8A9tP
— Laura Lynn Tyler Thompson (@LauraLynnTT) July 12, 2021
“Sorry but if you want to change my child mentally, hormonally, and physically you’re going to have to go through me,” wrote conservative commentator Elisha Krauss.
Sorry but if you want to change my child mentally, hormonally, and physically you’re going to have to go through me. https://t.co/pYoe4DrLNt
— Elisha (@ElishaKrauss) July 12, 2021
“They are out to get your children,” warned author Tom Quiggin.
They are out to get your children. https://t.co/XuUdrVauKs
— Tom Quiggin (@TomTSEC) July 12, 2021
“Journal of Medical ethics says parents should lose rights over their children,” wrote Evangelical theologian and author Nancy Pearcey.
Journal of Medical ethics says parents should lose rights over their children
"Taking LGBT patient testimony seriously also means that parents should lose veto power over most transition-related paediatric care."https://t.co/WUqiJJqodG
— LOVE THY BODY (@NancyRPearcey) July 10, 2021
“Leftists want everyone to be wards of the state…,” wrote radio host and columnist Derek Hunter.
Leftists want everyone to be wards of the state… https://t.co/ZPfVZ3XT6S
— Derek Hunter (@derekahunter) July 12, 2021
“Getting the picture yet, folks?” asked author James White Pastor.
“Medical ethics *based upon secular naturalism* provides you with nothing short of Josef Mengele as your primary care physician,” he added.
Getting the picture yet, folks?
Medical ethics *based upon secular naturalism* provides you with nothing short of Josef Mengele as your primary care physician. https://t.co/JYbZohxA8l
— James White (@DrOakley1689) July 12, 2021
“What could be more fundamental to parenting than helping a child embrace his or her God-given sexual identity?” asked Joshua Wester, researcher for the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.
“This is progressive madness masquerading as medicine,” he added.
What could be more fundamental to parenting than helping a child embrace his or her God-given sexual identity? This is progressive madness masquerading as medicine. https://t.co/brtSEWofay
— Joshua Wester (@jbwester) July 12, 2021
“This is drawing the line in the sand,” wrote former congressional candidate Barrington Martin II.
This is drawing the line in the sand. https://t.co/1L3Ki6EGgc
— Barrington Martin II (@_BarringtonII) July 11, 2021
“I’ve been saying it for years now: Parental rights is the next stage of the Jacobins’ culture war front,” wrote Andrew T. Walker, a public theology professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
I’ve been saying it for years now: Parental rights is the next stage of the Jacobins’ culture war front. https://t.co/cECxHBLAqb
— Andrew T. Walker (@andrewtwalk) July 11, 2021
“Whoever wrote this is not fit to deal in any professional capacity with children,” wrote columnist Barbara Kay.
Whoever wrote this is not fit to deal in any professional capacity with children. https://t.co/uOfFCDWAtW
— Barbara Kay (@BarbaraRKay) July 11, 2021
“Doctors: If you’re staying silent in the face of this, you’re complicit in the collapse of the credibility of your profession,” wrote author and journalist Abigail Shrier.
Doctors: If you're staying silent in the face of this, you're complicit in the collapse of the credibility of your profession. https://t.co/Mj9pW5VCZ7
— Abigail Shrier (@AbigailShrier) July 11, 2021
“Think Woke teachers are scary? Wait until you meet Woke Doctors,” she wrote in another tweet.
“Anyone with even a rudimentary sense of radical history should have seen this coming,” wrote columnist Dr. Sumantra Maitra.
“The slippery slope, is almost always, slippery,” he added.
Anyone with even a rudimentary sense of radical history should have seen this coming. https://t.co/NdghtcufPQ
— Dr S Maitra (@MrMaitra) July 11, 2021
“It’s hard to believe that we, as a society, are allowing this sort of thing to occur,” wrote a Twitter user.
“This has nothing to do with medicine, and ethics are the furthest things from the corrupt minds of these perverted ghouls,” wrote another Twitter user.
“What happens to a civilization who support and promote the mutilation whether chemical, physical, spiritual, or emotional of their children and the next generation?” asked another user.
“They are literally coming for our children,” warned another.
“Hide your children,” another user recommended.
“This is medical fascism,” said another.
“If parents can’t know what is best in this case, how can there be age laws about alcohol/drugs?” asked another Twitter user.
“If children are competent to make decisions like these who is to say they can’t enter into a romantic relationship with an adult? There is a reason why these same people are obsessed with sexualizing children,” wrote another.
Controversy over children’s rights to decide to undergo gender transition has stirred in recent years.
Last October, President Joe Biden implied that children as young as eight years old should have the right to change their gender.
As reported by Breitbart News, the article’s publication is another shuffle-step by the medical sector seeking to quietly grab more power and status from parents, despite public opposition.
Thus far, thousands of children have been pushed into declaring feelings of psychological distress over their bodies, spurring a growing wave of expensive treatments despite little scientific or medical evidence of any benefits.
Follow Joshua Klein on Twitter @JoshuaKlein.