Joe Biden says it’s ‘immoral’ to ban gender reassignment surgery for children

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

Trans rights have become a touchstone issue ahead of next month’s midterm elections

Joe Biden says it’s ‘immoral’ to ban gender reassignment surgery for children
Joe Biden
Joe Biden hosted a popular trans TikToker at the White House last week CREDIT: AFP

President Joe Biden has said it is wrong to block children’s access to sex change surgeries or puberty blockers.

Mr Biden, who hosted a popular trans TikToker at the White House last week, said he believed it was both a moral and legal issue as he spoke to a panel of activists for the NowThis News presidential forum.

When asked if red states should have the right to pass laws limiting access to gender reassignment treatments, Mr Biden said in comments published on Sunday: “I don’t think any state or anybody should have the right to do that.

“As a moral question and as a legal question, I just think it’s wrong,” the president added.

A number of GOP governors and lawmakers have backed bills blocking doctors from performing such treatment, especially when it comes to minors, claiming they are dangerous and have the potential to cause irreversible changes in younger patients.

Alabama, Arkansas, Texas and Arizona all enacted laws or policies earlier this year restricting youth access to sex change treatments, care and surgeries. In some cases, these laws impose penalties on adults who facilitate access to this care. 

“The idea that what’s going on in some states, I won’t get into the politics of it, but in some states, it’s just, it’s outrageous, and I think it’s immoral,” the president added. “The trans part’s not immoral, what they’re trying to do to trans persons is immoral.

“I feel very, very strongly that you should have every single solitary right, including use of your gender-identity bathrooms in public.”

Mr Biden in June signed an executive order to enhance protections for transgender children and take steps to ban conversion therapy. 

One of the six panellists, former Broadway actor Dylan Mulvaney, has been documenting her transition into a woman in a series called “Days of Girlhood” on TikTok, where her account has garnered more than 8.3 million followers.

“I am extremely privileged to live in a state that allows me access to the resources I need, and that decision is just between me and my doctors,” California-based Mulvaney told Mr Biden. She then asked how Democratic leaders could be more effective in advocating for us trans people.

Mulvaney, 25, known for sporting bows and pink dresses, talked about the online hate she has received for her videos, including accusations of “infantilisation” for calling herself a girl rather than a woman.

“I think some of that’s rooted in transphobia,” she said. “I think in womanhood, I get shamed a lot for liking pink and liking glitter, and I’m like, ‘Why does that bother you so much?’”

US cosmetics retailer Ulta was recently criticised for featuring Mulvaney on a podcast centred on femininity, with some claiming that she was “appropriating” womanhood. 

“We believe beauty is for everyone,” the company said in response.

Trans rights have become a touchstone issue ahead of next month’s midterm elections.

In one of the most prominent examples of the GOP’s effort to open new fronts in the discussion of LGBTQ rights, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill earlier this year that bans instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade, dubbed by opponents the “Don’t Say Gay” law.

Democratic candidates have largely stayed away from confronting the thorniest social issues, concentrating instead on abortion rights after the Supreme Court overturning of Roe v Wade.

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