On Monday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) laid the groundwork for forcing doctors and hospitals to perform transgender surgery in the name of fighting “discrimination.” HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and Assistant Secretary of Health Rachel Levine (a biological male who identifies as a woman) announced that HHS would adopt the Orwellian redefinition of “sex” to force transgender ideology in the medical field, mainstreaming the arguable chemical castration of children.
“The Supreme Court has made clear that people have a right not to be discriminated against on the basis of sex and receive equal treatment under the law, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation. That’s why today HHS announced it will act on related reports of discrimination,” Becerra announced in a statement. He cited the case Bostock v. Clayton County (2020), where the Court wrongly decided that Title VII’s prohibition of discrimination on the basis of sex applies to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
“Fear of discrimination can lead individuals to forgo care, which can have serious negative health consequences,” Becerra argued. “It is the position of the Department of Health and Human Services that everyone – including LGBTQ people – should be able to access health care, free from discrimination or interference, period.”
Levine framed the issue as a matter of health care access for regular maladies like a broken bone or a cancer screening.
“The mission of our Department is to enhance the health and well-being of all Americans, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation,” Levine said (emphasis original). “All people need access to healthcare services to fix a broken bone, protect their heart health, and screen for cancer risk. No one should be discriminated against when seeking medical services because of who they are.”
Terry Schilling, president of American Principles Project, exposed this deceptive messaging.
“Make no mistake: the policy announced by HHS today is not about ‘fix[ing] a broken bone’ or ‘screen[ing] for cancer risk.’ No American was being denied access to these treatments for identifying as ‘LGBTQ.’ Rather, this policy is really about forcing hospitals and medical professionals to adhere to leftist ideology regarding sexuality and gender—and in particular to provide sex-change procedures to all comers, including children,” Schilling warned.
Schilling noted that in March, Sweden’s Karolinska University Hospital, which treats minors experiencing gender dysphoria (the persistent condition of identifying with the gender opposite one’s biological sex), announced it would not provide “puberty-blocking” drugs or cross-sex hormones to children under the age of 16. Schilling also cited Britain’s High Court ruling protecting children from such chemical interventions on the grounds that minors cannot consent to procedures that may make them infertile.
“Yet, it is now apparently the policy of the U.S. government that such treatments must be given to children or else healthcare institutions risk losing federal funding and being shut down,” Schilling lamented. “This is a travesty, and must be opposed. Lawmakers in Congress and in the states should follow the lead of Arkansas and act to protect the health and well-being of children as well as the conscience rights of medical professionals. Voters will be watching.”
Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito warned about threats to the medical field from the ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County.
“Healthcare benefits may emerge as an intense battleground under the Court’s holding,” Alito warned in a scathing dissent. “Transgender employees have brought suit under Title VII to challenge employer-provided health insurance plans that do not cover costly sex reassignment surgery.”
“Such claims present difficult religious liberty issues because some employers and healthcare providers have strong religious objections to sex reassignment procedures, and therefore requiring them to pay for or to perform these procedures will have a severe impact on their ability to honor their deeply held religious beliefs,” Alito added.
The Obama administration interpreted Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) — which prohibits certain forms of discrimination in health care — to force Roman Catholic hospitals and doctors to perform transgender surgeries, in violation of their consciences and their interpretation of the Hippocratic oath.
Catholic hospitals will not perform surgeries that remove healthy biological functions, such as reproduction, unless such treatments are necessary to solve a worse malady. Some doctors have warned that even the cross-sex hormones — the less invasive “treatment” — give healthy people a disease. The actual surgery often involves sterilizing a patient for life. Mandating such “treatments” would force doctors to carry out procedures that they believe involve harm to a patient, thus violating the Hippocratic oath.
The HHS directive Becerra issued on Monday pledges that HHS’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) “will comply with the Religious Freedom Restoration Act… and all other legal requirements.” However, President Joe Biden supports the Equality Act, which would remove the religious freedom law’s protections in cases involving claims of discrimination against LGBT people.
While the HHS directive makes no mention of minors, Schilling was correct to warn that this move bodes ill for health care issues involving children. Levine has previously supported “treatments” to block children from going through “the wrong puberty,” and he refused to reverse his support for what amounts to the chemical castration of children.
While the Biden administration moves to force transgender ideology in medicine, there is no evidence that transgender surgery improves the mental health outcomes of gender dysphoric people. Men and women who formerly identified as transgender and underwent surgery have grown to reject transgender identity and lament the damage they did to their own bodies.
While Levine may frame this order in terms of fixing a broken bone or getting cancer screenings, Americans should see through this charade. Fighting “discrimination” against LGBT people involves forcing transgender ideology on the health care profession, even forcing doctors to violate the Hippocratic oath and perhaps even mandating chemical castration for gender-confused children.