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Current Page: Politics | Monday, February 19, 2018
Kansas GOP Affirms 'God's Design for Gender,' Opposes Transgender Identity in New Resolution

Kansas GOP Affirms 'God's Design for Gender,' Opposes Transgender Identity in New Resolution

Demonstrators hold signs during "Stand Up for Transgender Rights" event to show their support for transgender equality, in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. February 25, 2017. | (Photo: REUTERS/Kamil Krzacznski)

The Republican Party in the state of Kansas on Saturday moved to affirm "God's design for gender as determined by biological sex," not "self-perception."

The Republican Party's state committee in the Sunflower State passed a resolution on human sexuality at the state Republican convention over the weekend that states direct opposition of "all efforts to validate transgender identity."

The resolution not only affirms "God's design for gender" but also expresses opposition to hormone therapy and surgical methods to help transgender people alter their bodies to match their "perceived gender identity."

"[T]heir is no scientific consensus regarding the ethics or effectiveness of attempts to align one's biology with one's self-perception through experimental and exploratory medicine," the document states

The resolution also recognizes the rights of parents to "guide their child's education" and that "public schools should not undermine the values of parents who do not agree with transgenderism."

The resolution also explains that "students have a reasonable expectation of privacy and safety at school."

The resolution was proposed by party committee member Eric Teetsel, president of the social conservative nonprofit group Family Policy Alliance of Kansas.

Teetsel, the son-in-law of former Gov. Sam Brownback, also served as director of faith outreach for Marco Rubio's 2016 presidential campaign.

"[A]n ideology that says you can determine your own gender identity is broken and it's going to lead to a lot of pain," Teetsel said in an interview with the Wichita Eagle. "[A]nd that's why it's important to bring us back to what we know to be true and good."

As the party committee consists of about 180 members, there was some pushback by some at the convention hoping to see the state party become more inclusive. However, Teetsel told the newspaper that the GOP was "founded on certain principles."

"[W]e continue to stand on certain fundamental, timeless truths about the nature of man and what is good and how we should operate as a society," Teetsel said. "And we can't get caught up in fads and trends and worries about what people might think about us on a particular issue."

The resolution began with language recognizing the dignity all human beings, including "those who identify as LGBT."

"Ultimately, we are motivated by love," Teetsel explained. "It is concern for the well-being of others that drives us to seek out what is true and not just for society, but for them personally."

Party chairman Kelly Arnold told the Wichita Eagle that the party felt like the new resolution aligned with the state party's platform.

Even though the state party platform does not touch on issues of gender-identity, it does have a clause that calls for a federal constitutional amendment to fully protect marriage as a union of a man and a woman.

"You go back to the platform, that's what I always do on stuff like this," Arnold said."You go back to, what does the Republican Party stand for? What does our platform stand for?"

The resolution was opposed by LGBT advocacy groups, such as Equality Kansas.

"This is a cheap election year attack by Sam Brownback's son-in-law, and yet another attempt to dehumanize those who do not fit inside the narrow world view of Brownback, his family, and his wing of the Republican party," Equality Kansas posted on Facebook. "Equality Kansas is incredibly disappointed that Kansas Republicans, on a day they should be focused on protecting children, promote such an undignified and crass assault."

This is not the first time a resolution in Kansas has drawn the ire of the LGBT community.

In 2016, the Kansas Senate passed a resolution "supporting student privacy and safety."

The resolution came in response to an Obama-era Education Department guidance that encouraged schools to let transgender student access bathrooms and locker rooms that aligned with their gender identity.

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