4 times media, gov't promoted claims that puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones are safe for kids
3. The New York Times' reporting on breast-binding, cross-sex hormones
In May 2019, The New York Times reported on trans-identifying girls who wear compression binders to flatten their chests. While the article mentioned that there are risks, it focused more on where girls can purchase binders, how they're to be worn, and the perceived mental benefits to those suffering from gender dysphoria.
In the article titled, “Chest Binding Helps Smooth the Way for Transgender Teens, but There May be Risks,” the Times, which is arguably the most influential newspaper in the nation, gave scant coverage to the criticisms and harms associated with wearing breast binders, and instead highlighted claims that breast binding is beneficial, such as improving mood, and decreased depression and anxiety.
The article also used the phrase “assigned female at birth” in reference to a 21-year-old woman who identified as male. That terminology is used by those who argue that one's sex is not determined by sex chromosomes and genitalia, and is sometimes wrongly "assigned" at birth based on those characteristics.
The Times article concluded with the words of an Arizona teacher who asserted that compression binders might become a thing of the past because several trans-identified young people in a group she leads are taking hormone blockers and “will not develop breast tissue and therefore will not have a need to bind their chests.”
In June 2019, the Times published another article on the topic, titled, "'It’s Binding or Suicide’: Transgender and Non-Binary Readers Share Their Experiences With Chest Binders," in which every contributing voice testified that compression gear is essential and life-saving, despite suffering from difficulty breathing and severe damage to ribs.
The MacLean Clinic in Ontario, Canada, which specializes in performing elective mastectomies — what's euphemistically referred to in the trans community as "top surgery" — warns on its website that breast binding can cause loss of breath, back pain throughout the back or shoulders, and increased pain or pressure with deep breaths.
The site also warns of damaged blood vessels, punctured and collapsed lungs, and notes that compressing the chest too tightly might also lead to significant back issues that damage the spine, which is part of the central nervous system.