On Tuesday, Hungary’s parliament passed a law prohibiting the sharing of LGBT content with minors as part of a general bill fighting pedophilia. Many groups condemned this aspect of the law, calling it anti-LGBT discrimination, yet there are serious concerns about the psychological damage that some LGBT lessons may cause young children, particularly when it comes to transgender identity.
“Some organisations use these workshops to influence the sexual development of children with so-called sensitizing programmes as part of anti-discrimination campaigns, which can gravely harm their physical, mental and moral development,” lawmakers in Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s Fidesz Party wrote in an amendment to the legislation, Reuters reported.
Opposition parties boycotted the vote, leading to a 157-1 vote in the National Assembly, where Fidesz has a parliamentary majority. Lawmakers from the right-wing Jobbik Party also endorsed the measure.
The opposition party Momentum called for a boycott of the Parliament vote, saying the law would endanger the LGBT community. “The Russian template gives us a clear picture of the effect such hate mongering has on a society,” Momentum Chairman Andras Fekete-Gyor said in a statement. “Violence against the LGBTQ community is common there, from authorities and compatriots.”
Yet Orban has drawn contrasts between his government in Hungary and the more repressive Russian government. “Hungary is a tolerant, patient country with regard to homosexuality,” he said in an interview last fall, Deutsche Welle (DW) reported. “But there is a red line that must not be crossed: Leave our children alone!”
Andras Bozoki, a Hungarian political scientist at the Central European University (CEU) in Vienna told DW that the law violates European Union values. He predicted that a European court would probably strike down the law.
When Fidesz drafted the legislation in May, the law only stipulated tougher penalties for pedophilia in the wake of several cases of child abuse among Fidesz supporters. A court sentenced Gabor Kaleta, the former Hungarian ambassador to Peru, on child pornography charges after authorities found 19,000 photos on his devices.
Most of the bill focused on increasing sentences for sex crimes committed against children and establishing a public database of sex offenders. Yet the law also had amendments “that ban the representation of any sexual orientation besides heterosexual as well as gender change information in school sex education programs, or in films and advertisements aimed at anyone under 18,” NPR reported.
While most LGBT people have nothing to do with pedophilia and it is unfair to connect the issues, pro-LGBT lessons on sexuality and gender may traumatize children, especially at a young age.
Transgenderism, in particular, can confuse and scar children. Nigel and Sally Rowe, Christian parents of two young boys in England, decided to pull their kids out of school after the school allowed a boy to attend class dressed as a girl. The presence of the transgender child “was making [our son] unwell and stressed and so we made the decision to withdraw him from school at the age of seven,” the mother explained. Children (ages 5 to 8) who attended a “transition party” for a boy who identified as a girl at Rocklin Academy in California came home “traumatized.”
Even in the case of adults, 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.
Last year, Britain’s High Court ruled that children under age 16 lack the ability to consent to “puberty-blocking” drugs and cross-sex hormones that have irreversible life-long effects. Children who undergo such “treatments” often persist in transgender identity and lose their ability to have children later in life, so some refer to cross-sex hormones and “puberty blockers” as “chemical castration.”
LGBT content for minors has inspired a great deal of backlash in the U.S., as well. Nickelodeon appears to be hemorrhaging viewers after the network and its preschool version, Nick Jr., have released videos championing “trans,” “queer,” and “pansexual” identities. Pirates and Princesses, an entertainment site specializing in Disney-related news, reported that Nickelodeon YouTube videos got “downvoted to such a degree that they’ve now hidden the ratio.” The site also reported that the network has seen a major decline in viewers since it started pushing the LGBT agenda.
Conservatives in Hungary are right to worry about the oversexualization of children and the threat of the transgender movement, although the inclusion of this issue in a bill opposing pedophilia is rightly controversial. In any case, this law may embolden parents to speak out about the LGBT propaganda that is being foisted upon their children.