By Tyler Arnold for CNA
President Joe Biden criticised Florida’s regulation of transgender medical care for children and ban on gender ideology in the classroom, calling the measures “close to sinful”.
Biden said in an interview with Daily Show guest host Kal Penn: “What’s going on in Florida is, as my mother would say, close to sinful. I mean it’s just terrible what they’re doing.”
Although the president did not specify which laws he was referring to, Republican lawmakers in Florida and other states have introduced bills and regulations to protect children from transgender medical interventions and restrict classroom instruction in gender ideology.
During his interview, Biden added that federal legislation might be necessary to prevent states from adopting certain bills that affect transgender policies related to children.
“It’s not like, you know, a kid wakes up one morning and says, ‘You know, I decided I want to become a man or I want to become a woman,” the president said. “I mean, what are they thinking about here? They’re human beings, they love and have feelings. … It’s cruel. We [should] make sure we pass [federal] legislation like we passed on same-sex marriage. You mess with that, you’re breaking the law and you’re going to be held accountable.”
In Florida, a ban on transgender surgeries and medications for children, issued by the state’s Board of Medicine, goes into effect March 16. Lawmakers have also proposed legislation banning transgender medical procedures.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed legislation that prevents schools from promoting gender ideology through discussions of transgenderism and sexual orientation to young children in kindergarten through third grade. The legislation requires such discussions in later grades to be age appropriate.
Other states, such as Mississippi, Utah, and South Dakota, have adopted similar legislation to ban sex change operations for children. Most states do not restrict sex change surgery for minors at this time.
Although Biden, the nation’s second Catholic president, called the Florida bills “close to sinful,” his interpretation sets him on the opposite side of the issue from the Vatican and Pope Francis.
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