The Many Harms of Gender Identity Laws: A Mother of a Trans-Identifying Teen Speaks Out by Katherine Cave
All people should be protected from harassment and harm, no matter how they identify. But we as a society must be allowed to reasonably act on the basis of sex when medical treatment, privacy, and safety are at stake. If “gender identity” becomes a protected class, women and children are the ones who will suffer most.
The Equality Act (H.R.2282, S.1006) proposes to redefine sex across all federal laws and add “gender identity” to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as a prohibited category of discrimination in public spaces. Assuming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi keeps her promise, the Equality Act will soon be voted on in the House of Representatives.
If it were to pass there, and were ever passed in the Senate and signed into law, it would cause great harm.
“Gender identity” is a term that refers to how people choose to identify themselves based on their feelings. There is no test to determine one’s gender identity; it is simply asserted.
Novel gender identities, such as “transgender” or “nonbinary,” have become shockingly common, especially among (Link): young people.
Unlike protected classes such as race and sex, “gender identity” has no basis in material reality.
There is (Link): no science to prove its existence.
Yet a rapidly increasing number of (Link): states and municipalities have passed laws to prohibit discrimination on the basis of one’s self-asserted, subjective, unprovable “gender identity.”
While laws protecting “gender identity” sound fair and may be well-intentioned, the unintended harms that they cause are quite serious. As the mother of a transgender-identifying teen, my concerns are personal.
….What could be wrong with a law that promises “equality”? What possible injuries could result from banning discriminatory practices? While these laws may initially seem innocuous, the harmful consequences of ignoring the reality of sex differences have been evidenced in states and countries where “gender identity” laws and policies already affect children, healthcare, and sex-specific spaces. Children and women have suffered the most.
This is not equality.
….Gender Identity Laws Harm Medical Patients
“Gender identity” laws harm all patients, not just young people seeking treatment for gender dysphoria.
Biological sex differences are much deeper than obvious differences in genitalia; they include (Link): differences at the biochemical and cellular level, which have vital implications for medical research, (Link): disease tracking, (Link): proper medical diagnosis, and treatment.
For example, receiving a blood transfusion from a previously pregnant female donor is (Link): associated with increased mortality among male recipients.
How could male patients receive safe blood transfusions if healthcare workers must treat blood donors and recipients based on their changeable sense of “gender identity” rather than their immutable biological sex?
There are pronounced and important differences between men and women in their cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, and (Link): immune systems. For example, the symptoms and risks of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death, differ (Link): based on the patient’s biological sex.
…Gender Identity Laws Harm Women and Girls
If gender identity becomes a protected class, males who “identify” as women will have legal access to any women’s locker room, bathroom, shelter, prison, changing room, or sports team throughout the United States.
Biological sex differences will be deemed irrelevant as gender identity becomes the determining criterion for inclusion.
Schools and businesses will be forced to comply regardless of the legitimate (Link): privacy and safety concerns of women.
When women and girls use public showers, restrooms, or shelters, they rightly expect that they will not be ogled, harassed, or attacked by men.
But if gender identity becomes a legally protected class, they will have no legal right to demand the absence of men when they are in various states of undress.
Evidence from the UK, where the number of unisex facilities is increasing, (Link): shows they have become a magnet for sexual offenders.
In some states where bathroom access is determined on the basis of “gender identity,” sexual assaults have already been reported; (Link): one alleged victim was only five years old.
Homeless, battered, and (Link): sexually abused women who seek refuge in shelters will be legally forced to share this space with men. Where “gender identity” laws are already in full effect, women’s shelters have been forced to open their doors to biological men with disastrous results.
In California, a man who identified as a woman sexually harassed (Link): nine homeless women at a shelter while they were naked in the shower.
Another man claiming to be a transgender woman (Link): sexually assaulted his victims in two Canadian women’s shelters.
Female students will be forced to share dorm rooms with males based on “gender identity,” a policy that has already been adopted at numerous (Link): colleges.
Many schools described as “women-only” are beginning to (Link): accept transgender-identifying males.
All-female sports teams and athletic contests will be forced to include males based on their self-proclaimed identities, as they have in (Link): states like Minnesota, essentially denying female athletes a fair chance of winning due to men’s (Link): undeniable physiological advantages. Women’s safety will be jeopardized when playing (Link): contact sports.
If “gender identity” becomes a protected class, nearly all sex-based protected public spaces will disappear. Women and girls will certainly suffer the harms.