In Ohio, the battle over restrictions on transgender medical procedures is plodding forward. Part of the activity revolves around Republican Governor Mike DeWine. The state legislature already passed legislation that would ban all trans medical procedures involving children, but DeWine vetoed it. (He later turned around and signed executive orders that would ban some, though not all of the same things.) The Ohio House already voted to override that veto and the Senate will take up the measure this week. But there is more than just the protection of children being considered. If everything currently under consideration goes through, there will be restrictions placed on similar procedures being performed on adults as well, making Ohio only the second state to go that far. (Associated Press)
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced proposals this month that transgender advocates say could block access to gender-affirming care provided by independent clinics and general practitioners, leaving thousands of adults scrambling for treatment and facing health risks.
Ashton Colby, 31, fears the clinic where he gets the testosterone he has taken since age 19 would no longer offer it. The transgender Columbus man believes he could eventually be treated by another provider that would meet the new requirements. But even a few months’ wait could leave Colby experiencing a menstrual cycle for the first time in many years.
“My mental health has been stressed,” Colby said. “These are feelings related to being transgender that I have not felt in years, but now I’m thrown into feeling devastated about my experience as a transgender person.”
The policies impacting adult care are not part of the legislative package. They are found in a new set of draft rules drawn up by the Ohio Department of Health and the state’s Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. (An appropriate place to address such things, I suppose.) They would require psychiatrists, endocrinologists, and medical ethicists to have roles in establishing any transgender “care” units for patients of any age. Patients between the ages of 18 and 21 would have to have at least six months of mental health counseling before beginning any surgical or medical regimen. Providers would also be barred from referring children to facilities in other states.
Before commenting further, I wanted to point out that I left that particular excerpt from the linked article here for a reason. The AP not only interviewed one patient who could be impacted, but they peppered the entire report with the language we’ve come to expect. They speak of transgender surgical and medicinal procedures for people of any age as if it’s the most normal thing in the world. The AP makes it sound as if they’re just talking about going to your doctor for a flu shot or to have a cut stitched up. This is how fully much of the media has bought into these dystopian concepts.
Getting back to the legislation and the new, proposed healthcare requirements, when it comes to performing such procedures on children, none of this should be on the table. We’ve discussed the reasons here enough times previously that I won’t repeat them all again. The rules regarding adults are another matter and they still give me pause. On the one hand, if you’re going to have appropriate oversight of the medical industry at the state or federal level it should definitely be coming from sensible, educated officials with the appropriate type of experience, hopefully including people from the Department of Health. But they rely on input from professional medical associations. And too many of them, including the AMA and the American Academy of Pediatrics have been fully hypnotized by the highly profitable new industry of trans medical practice, so they may not be of much help.
Having said that, however, my small-government conservative instincts are set on edge when I see legislators or executives mandating what adults can and can’t do with their own bodies. As long as you’re willing to live with the consequences of your own decisions, it seems like you should be free to make the choice. But lately, I’ve become more worried about how many adults are getting potentially catastrophic advice in these matters. Take the patient from the AP excerpt above, for example. Ashton Colby was allowed to begin taking testosterone at the age of 19, barely over the cusp of adulthood. Now, 12 years later, she hasn’t had a menstrual cycle for more than a decade. What will that do to her when she’s approaching menopause? Nobody really knows because long-term studies have yet to be seriously undertaken. We are sailing through uncharted waters here and so many of these stories could still wind up ending in tragedy.