Whitney Downard, writing for the Indiana Capital Chronicle, has an article about SB 480 entitled “Bill Eliminating Parents’ Authority Over Medical Decisions Heads to Governor.” I posted about the bill following the House committee hearing a few days ago. The bill passed the House 60-35 on a mostly party line vote. This legislation is just cruel. It helps no one and makes many people’s lives harder. I personally know at least three families this will affect negatively.
“Indiana lawmakers seem hellbent on joining the growing roster of states determined to jeopardize the health and lives of transgender youth, in direct opposition to the overwhelming body of scientific and medical evidence supporting this care as appropriate and necessary,” said Katie Blair, the advocacy and public policy director of [ACLU-Indiana].
“The idea that these youth are being pushed into harmful medical care is an insult to their parents who are working very hard to get the best care for their children. Politicians harm us all when they ignore medical judgment and block access to standard care in favor of discriminatory fear-mongering.”
I disagree with a lot of what comes out of the Indiana General Assembly. But, mostly I can at least understand the motivations from, at the very least, a who-gains, who-loses standpoint. Tax cuts for the rich? Well, they earned it, we need to encourage productivity, and spending money on social programs is a waste. Restricting reproductive rights? The fetus is a baby and, therefore, abortion is murder. Etc.
I can usually put myself into the shoes of proponents and grok how they can view themselves as the good guys. (Like my creative writing taught me for developing characters – remember that everyone is the hero in their own story.) But it’s beyond me on this one. You have a kid in need, struggling with a difficult situation, parents who agree with the kid that puberty blockers or hormone therapy is the way to go, and physicians who agree that it’s medically appropriate. Invoking the power of the government to criminalize their efforts will make me the good guy? Maybe my powers of empathy are atrophying, but I just can’t climb inside that mind.