The Alabama Senate passed a bill barring the experimental medicalized gender-transition of youth, including puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and body-altering surgeries.
Following a successful committee vote last week, the state senate passed legislation criminalizing the act of prescribing opposite sex hormones and drugs used to arrest puberty to youth under the age of 19, AL.com reported. The bill is called the Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act.
Sen. Shay Shelnutt, R-Trussville, was the sponsor of the legislation and he stressed that the practices should not be performed on children because of their inability to give consent.
“I just don’t think and others don’t think that kids should be given experimental drugs or surgeries that could have irreversible consequences for the rest of their life,” Shelnutt said.
“Kids are not fully developed until later in life. I think we can all agree that kids aren’t capable of making certain decisions until certain ages. And so, we want to just stop these procedures from happening in Alabama.”
Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, D-Mobile, asked whether legislators ought to restrict decisions made between parents and their children, criticizing the lack of data presented.
The final Senate vote was 22-3.
The Republican legislator noted that while he did not know how many youth were being hormonally transitioned in the state, the exact numbers do not matter. He does not know of any young people undergoing gender surgeries.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s only 20 that it’s happened to. One’s too many,” Shelnutt said.
If signed into law, Shelnutt's bill would make prescribing, dispensing, administering or in any way providing the drugs and treatments to minors a class C felony. The law would also ban surgeries that alter a minor’s anatomy.
Erin Brewer of Logan, Utah, who developed a transgender identity when she was a child but through psychological counseling was able to desist and reintegrate with her biological sex, has been advocating for similar bills across the country. Brewer was present for the Alabama debate as part of the nonpartisan Alabama Compassion Coalition and her written testimony was submitted into the record.
"Transgender activists suggest that we be kind to transgender-identified children, and I agree wholeheartedly. But the transgender activists are the ones being cruel by telling these kids that they were born in the wrong body. We need to stand up for these kids, love them, help them heal, and assure them that the self-hatred they have is not a normal developmental path but a feeling that can be overcome," Brewer told The Christian Post in a Friday interview.
"Because my school psychologist did not affirm my belief that I was born in the wrong body, my teachers did not use the name I wanted them to use, Timothy, or refer to me with male pronouns. I was not allowed to use the boys bathroom or participate in P.E. with the boys. Instead, my school psychologist, teacher, and parents helped me to manage my self-hatred rather than encourage it," she explained.
Today, however, schools take the exact opposite approach, Brewer lamented, noting that the transgender ideology contains a dark underbelly, which few know.
Before medical interventions are considered, young children are "socially transitioned" in various ways, such as girls wearing clothes typically worn by boys, she stressed, but "it can also include parents of young girls who are gender confused putting something called a 'packer' in their panties."
A "packer" is a fake penis that resembles a sex toy.
"Keeping in mind that many girls who develop a trans identity have done so as a coping mechanism after a sexual abuse, imagine that girl being told that her self-hatred is valid and then a parent putting a fake penis in her panties and told that she is, in fact, a boy," she said.
Brewer held up one such penis packer at a press conference for the bill last week, explaining how they are used. At that same press conference, a teen girl who took testosterone for a year before detransitioning spoke about how the gender doctor treated her in an unprofessional manner and how the hormones damaged her body and caused her all kinds of health problems.
Alabama's bill will now move to the House of Representatives where Republicans currently have a 77-28 majority.
The legislative effort in the Yellowhammer state to address the issue follows a recent unsuccessful attempt to forbid such practices in South Dakota. The South Dakota House overwhelmingly passed their bill banning the gender-transitioning of children but was subsequently voted down in a Senate committee under pressure from the Chamber of Commerce. A handful of other states have introduced and are considering similar measures.