Medical school suspends study that would have tortured transgender people for science

Dr. Mengele, the Nazi “Angel of Death” used to do this sort of shit. Trans-people are human beings and the equals of cis-folks and shouldn’t be subjected to torture in the name of science.

From LGBTQ Nation:

They were going to trigger severe gender dysphoria in trans people and then scan their brains.

By Alex Bollinger
Thursday, February 4, 2021

A controversial study on transgender people’s neurology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) has been suspended due to ethical concerns that the participants could face harm from the study itself.

Dr. Jamie Feusner, the principal investigator in the study, has paused the National Institute of Health-backed study to get more input from transgender people and “understand their concerns more deeply and have a dialogue about the study’s objectives.”

The study, according to reports of people who participated in focus groups to help researchers construct it, was supposed to be about the effects of gender dysphoria on a person’s brain.

Gender dysphoria is the medical term for the distress a person feels because their gender identity doesn’t align with their sex assigned at birth. The experience is psychologically painful and associated with depression, anxiety, social isolation, and an increased risk of suicide attempts.

The Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior study was going to trigger gender dysphoria in participants and then use magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to scan their brains to better understand the condition.

“This study’s stated purpose is to trigger ‘gender dysphoria’ by taking photographs of participants’ bodies in tight clothing (unitards), and specifically people who have not had access to affirming medical transition,” said Gender Justice LA Executive Director Ezak Perez in a statement. “This research design unapologetically aims to cause mental health distress to trigger ‘dysphoria’ to an already marginalized and vulnerable community.”

The group also said that the research could be used to push conversion therapy on transgender people.

“The researchers claim that their study can help TGI people, but their own research materials and publications suggested that they are developing tools that may curtail access to gender-affirming treatment,” the statement says, adding that the study could be used “for the creation of therapeutics to treat gender dysphoria as one would treat anorexia” and that it “opens the door for advancing the highly disregarded and dangerous practice of conversion therapy.”

In a letter dated January 27, 2021, the California LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network urged transgender, gender non-conforming, and intersex people to stay away from the study, calling it “harmful.”

“We object to the view that transgender people have an aberrant body image condition or that brain imaging of traumatic response could ultimately ‘help’ trans people,” the group said in the letter. “It is suggestive of a search for medical ‘cure,’ which can open the door for more gatekeeping and restrictive policies and practices in relation to access to gender-affirming care. At a time in which trans lives are under attack, we find this kind of research to be misguided and dangerous.”

The institute said that Dr. Feusner is voluntarily suspending the study for the moment to get more input on it.

“The ultimate hope of this study is that it will lead to improved quality of life for those who identify as transgender, non-binary, and gender-nonconforming and a better understanding of the effects of hormones on the brain,” a spokesperson for UCLA Health told Radiology Business. “UCLA believes partnership with our diverse communities is essential to performing research that is culturally aware, socially responsible, improves quality of life, and advances our public service mission.”

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Republican Legislatures Are Trying To Ban Transgender Athletes From Women’s Sports

From Huffington Post:

The bills are obvious attempts to restrict LGBTQ rights under the guise of solving phony concerns about athletic advantage.

By Travis Waldron

Republican state legislatures in more than a dozen states are advancing bills that would bar transgender women and girls from participating in women’s and girls sports at the youth, high school and collegiate levels. It’s an aggressive effort to strip rights from LGBTQ people on the state level that runs counter to President Joe Biden’s attempts to advance equality from the White House.

GOP-controlled legislative chambers in Mississippi, Utah, Montana and North Dakota have all approved legislation this year to prohibit transgender students from competing in sports that match their gender identity.

Republican lawmakers have introduced similar bills  in Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, New Hampshire, South DakotaTexas and Tennessee, where Republican Gov. Bill Lee last week declared that trans athletes would “destroy women’s sports” if they are allowed to compete. Several of those bills have already advanced through legislative committees, although others have already run into heated opposition that may succeed in thwarting them, and Utah Gov. Spencer Cox (R) has said that he would not sign the bill that passed the state House there.

The conservative push follows the first-in-the-nation passage of a law barring trans athletes from girls and women’s sports in Idaho last year.

Equality advocates say the bills are actually a next, desperate attempt to restrict LGBTQ rights after other efforts ― including supposed “religious freedom” laws like the one Indiana approved in 2015 and so-called “bathroom bills,” which drew widespread opposition after North Carolina’s legislature passed HB 2 in 2016 ― failed to spread the way conservatives hoped. Like those proposals, which conservatives painted as efforts to stop businesses from having to serve gay couples or prevent trans people from attacking cisgender women in bathrooms, the bills to prevent trans girls and women from dominating women’s sports are a discriminatory solution in search of a problem, said Kate Oakley, the state legislative director for the Human Rights Campaign.

“It’s not about any one of these issues actually being itself a real problem,” Oakley said. “They keep trying to find the thing that is going to make people afraid. And this is where they’ve settled, last year and this year, on these anti-trans bills that are targeting youth in particular.”

Republicans have framed these bills as an attempt to protect women’s sports and Title IX, the federal law that guarantees equal access to education and scholastic sports for women and girls. And proponents of the bills have pointed to occasional victories by transgender girls and women competing against cisgender opponents as proof that trans athletes pose a threat to women’s sports. But there is no obvious evidence supporting their claims.

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History-Making Trans WNBA Star Layshia Clarendon Gets Top Surgery

FTMs really present a problem for TERFs and TEBs. The idea that one is forever the sex assigned at birth means people who transition from female to male are still considered female in the world of trans-eliminating bigots.

People who have obviously never met any trans-men.

From Out Magazine:

“It’s hard to put into words the feeling seeing my chest for the first time free of breasts, seeing my chest the way I’ve always seen it…”

By Mey Rude
February 02 2021

The first WNBA player to come out as trans has gotten top surgery and the whole league is coming together to celebrate.

Layshia Clarendon, who uses he, she, and they, came out as gender nonconforming in 2020, and four years earlier had described themself as “non-cisgender.” Not only is the 29-year-old point guard a leader on the court, but they’re also an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ+ people and Black lives.

On Friday, Clarendon posted a series of pictures on Instagram showing off the results from their recent top surgery. “On January 13th at 10am I hugged my wife in front of my surgery building, walked in and took a deep breath… The day was finally here. The day I got to have Top Surgery!!!!!” they captioned the post.

“It’s hard to put into words the feeling seeing my chest for the first time free of breasts, seeing my chest the way I’ve always seen it, and feeling a sense of gender euphoria as opposed to gender dysphoria,” she continued, “Sighhhh… freedom… freedom at last.”

Clarendon also shared that they were initially scared to share the news because of the “hate, myths & ignorance” about trans and nonbinary people, but they felt compelled to because “I want trans people to know and see that we’ve always existed & no one can erase us.”

He added, “I want people to remember that my freedom is your freedom because none of us are free until we are all free!”

Clarendon’s team, the New York Liberty, posted a message in support on Twitter. “The Liberty has been and will continue to be an organization that celebrates the individuality of all people. Layshia is a proud embodiment of our belief that our strength lies in our truth and no one should live constrained by society boundaries,” the statement reads. “Layshia’s journey as a pioneering athlete, along with their activism and advocacy work, is an inspiring call for each of us to honor our humanity above all else.”

The WNBPA, the league’s union, also released a statement supporting Clarendon, saying, “with the support of this union, Layshia has shared a personal part of their story with the world, and reminds us that what it means to be human is to be authentic, holistic and inclusive. It is a story that will empower, and remind us that we will not be restrained by the many assumptions and stereotypes that seek to define us as girls or women.”

After the outpouring of support, Clarendon posted on Twitter thanking everyone for the messages. “Wow, so I was not expecting that level of love and support from everyone yesterday,” she said, “I’m overwhelmed in the best possible way! Thank you to everyone who messaged me publicly and privately.”

Congratulations to Clarendon, and thank you for being an inspiration to trans and gender nonconforming people everywhere.

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31 anti-transgender bills filed in 20 states as GOP targets schoolchildren nationwide

From LGBTQ Nation:

From school sports to putting doctors in prison for treating trans patients, lawmakers in these states want to make people’s lives harder.

By Alex Bollinger
Friday, February 5, 2021

  At least 20 states are currently considering at least 31 bills that would attack the rights of transgender people – mostly attacking transgender youth – as more state lawmakers file bills to tear away as the limited rights and protections that currently exist for transgender people.

Georgia Rep. Philip Singleton (R) filed a bill yesterday that makes the state the seventeenth in the nation to consider a bill that would ban transgender girls and women from competing in school sports as their gender.

“I just feel like in the time that we’re in right now — in a global pandemic — we’re going into our second year of being in lockdown and our elected officials have nothing to do other than worry about what’s in someone’s underpants,” said Jen Slipakoff, the mother of a 13-year-old transgender student-athlete in Georgia.

Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Georgia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas are all considering bills that would ban transgender girls and women from school sports this year. Some of the bills also ban transgender boys and men from competing as their gender as well.

“You can’t claim to be supporting women’s sports when you’re trying to isolate transgender girls from sports,” said Shannon Clawson of Georgia Equality. “You’re attacking and further isolating transgender youth and keeping them from participating in sports that would allow them to learn very important principles about leadership and teamwork.”

Eleven states are also considering bills that would ban gender-affirming care for transgender minors, even attacking puberty blockers, which must be taken before a person is an adult in order to be effective.

Arizona’s S.B. 1511 is one such bill. If the bill passes, any health care professional who prescribes puberty blockers to a transgender patient will be committing a class 2 felony with a recommended sentence of up to 12 and a half years in prison, just for prescribing medication to a patient that delays the permanent and life-altering changes that occur during puberty and has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of suicide attempts.

Bills have been introduced that would either ban transgender youth from getting gender-affirming care and punish doctors for providing that care in Alabama, Arizona, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah. Montana’s bill already failed in the state’s house, but the others could still pass.

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Dad designs line of swimwear for trans girls named after his own daughter

From Today:

These bikini bottoms could be a game-changer for transgender tweens and teens.

By Allison Slater Tate
Jan. 21, 2021

After watching his own daughter Ruby, 12, struggle to find bikini bottoms that made her feel both comfortable and confident as a transgender girl, Toronto dad Jamie Alexander decided to solve the problem himself.

Alexander created a new clothing brand, Rubies, with the specific goal of producing form-fitting clothing for transgender children up to a size 20. His first product: the Ruby Shaping Bikini Bottom.

Though he told TODAY Parents Ruby was drawn to high heels, Disney princesses, and Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies” video as early as age 3, Alexander and his wife Angela were not sure at first whether her preferences meant anything significant about her gender. After all, who doesn’t love Beyoncé?

With the help of their local public school system, the Alexanders gave their child space and support to figure out if she identified as male, the gender she was assigned at birth, female, or neither. By grade 3, it became clear she knew the answer.

But as Ruby grew into adolescence, Alexander noticed that transgender girls have one specific issue when it comes to fashion: finding bikini bottoms they could confidently wear in public — that can “magically turn a pointy poker into a dainty dune, no tucking required,” as the Rubies website explains.

“An item of clothing like Rubies swimwear can be a total game-changer for transgender and gender-creative children,” said Jessica Herthel, co-author of children’s book “I Am Jazz” with transgender activist Jazz Jennings.

“Being able to do something that most of us take for granted — namely, to go swimming without fear of being stared at or teased, or even targeted — can give a child a feeling of normalcy and belonging,” said Herthel.

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Southwest Ohio Residents Have New Service Options for Gender-Affirming Hormone Therapy

From The Buckeye Flame:

By Jen Kuhn
February 8, 2021

It is a sad reality that affirming and inclusive health care can be very limited for transgender and gender-nonconforming Ohioans. Many communities are underserved and patients may face discrimination or ignorance in a health care setting.

One organization in Southwest Ohio is working to change all that and provide their transgender residents with safer health care options.

Last October, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region (PPSWO) launched brand new gender-affirming hormone therapy services in four of their five health centers in the region. After overwhelmingly positive feedback from the initial 39 transgender patiences served, the organization is ready to welcome more.

To learn about these new services and how PPSWO supports trans and nonbinary patiences in an affirming way, The Buckeye Flame caught up with PPSWO’s President & CEO Kersha Deibel and their Medical Director Dr. Sharon Liner.

When people think of Planned Parenthood, they probably don’t immediately think of trans care. But in actuality, you’ve worked with transgender patients for decades. Can you tell us what trans care has looked like for you, and how this particular service came about?
Deibel: As health care providers, educators and advocates, Planned Parenthood for 90+ years has been committed to serving all people in our communities with care and respect. We are proud to provide sexual and reproductive health care and education to the transgender community across the country — including cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment, birth control, and now, hormone therapy, as well as sex education that includes all identities and experiences.

We know that when people are truly cared for, they make their lives, their families, and their communities better and healthier. Transgender folks, like everyone else, have a fundamental need for quality health care and sex education, and they deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.

Making our health centers a safe and supportive environment is valuable for all patients and we strive to make sure the gender identity of our transgender patients is acknowledged, respected and understood. This means creating an environment that affirms their gender identity, understanding and communicating the kinds of care they need and using inclusive language that acknowledges the full spectrum of gender identities.

And for any readers who may be unfamiliar, can you also briefly define hormone therapy and what that process is like?
Gender-Affirming Hormone Therapy (GAHT) is prescribing hormones to help a person develop characteristics that are more in line with their gender identity.  Our process at PPSWO is that all new patients who schedule for GAHT will first meet virtually with our patient navigator.  This allows us to gather all the information needed to assure that when they come into the health center to meet with the medical team, we can focus on the patient’s needs.  While this is what GAHT is at its core, there is so much more to assure that our patients all feel safe and represented in our centers as well as in all aspects of their lives.

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Biden’s Historic Pro-LGBTQ+ Executive Order Is Even Bigger Than You Think

From Them:

The HRC called it the “most substantive, wide-ranging executive order” on LGBTQ+ rights ever signed by a U.S. president.

By Nico Lang
January 22, 2021

Joe Biden’s new administration began with a bang on Wednesday. Among the 17 executive orders signed on his first day in office, the 46th president issued an order instructing federal agencies to fully implement the Supreme Court’s historic June 2020 ruling on discrimination against LGBTQ+ people in the workplace. In Bostock v. Clayton County, the nation’s highest court found in a decisive 6-3 ruling that queer and transgender employees are protected from workplace bias under 1964 civil rights laws banning sex-based discrimination.

But while the order would appear to merely reaffirm what was already the law of the land, the directive’s implications are far more expansive in their scope. Shortly after news broke that Biden had signed the order, the Human Rights Campaign called it the “most substantive, wide-ranging executive order concerning sexual orientation and gender identity ever issued by a United States president.”

What makes the order so unprecedented, according to Lambda Legal Chief Strategy Officer Sharon McGowan, is that it doesn’t merely apply to workplace settings. In a phone call with them., McGowan claimed that the president’s statement signaled that the new administration intends to apply the Supreme Court’s analysis to “all federal laws that prohibit sex discrimination,” including statutes concerning areas like education, housing, and health care.

“This is exactly the kind of clear statement that we hoped to get from the Biden administration,” she said. “And that absolutely is the right approach, because there’s nothing about the Supreme Court’s explanation for why sexual orientation or gender identity discrimination as an aspect of sex discrimination should be limited just to the employment context.”

The text of the order specifies that the Biden White House believes that the Supreme Court’s ruling extends to laws like the Fair Housing Act, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and the Immigration and Nationality Act. As a practical matter, that declaration would guarantee equal access for trans students who request to use the bathroom that most closely corresponds with their gender identity at school, people with HIV seeking affirming health care, and homeless trans people who wish to be housed in alignment with their gender at federally funded shelters.

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HRC Mourns Bianca “Muffin” Bankz, Black Trans Woman Killed in Atlanta

From HRC:

by Madeleine Roberts
February 2, 2021

HRC is deeply saddened to learn of the death of Bianca “Muffin” Bankz, a Black transgender woman in her early 30s who was killed in Atlanta, Georgia. Bianca, who was nicknamed Muffin by her close friends because of her love for blueberry muffins, was shot to death on January 17. Her death is at least the third violent death of a transgender or gender non-conforming person in 2021. We say “at least” because too often these deaths go unreported — or misreported. HRC has also recently learned of a fourth death, that of Dominique Jackson in Mississippi, who was killed on January 25.

According to Project Q Atlanta, on Friday, January 29, Bianca’s friends and the Trans Housing Coalition (THC) held a vigil outside of her apartment to remember her. Friends described her as “sweet and kind,” and said that one of her dreams was to compete on RuPaul’s Drag Race. According to THC, Bianca was living with a friend, Africa, whom she had known for eight years. Bianca found her chosen family in Atlanta. Said THC’s Founder and Co-Director Jesse Pratt López, “Muffin was just blossoming into herself.” Her friend Angel Karmarain said, “I wish she [would] call my phone right now… But she’s not here. I just love her and I will miss you.”

Muffin was truly loved by so many people in her short lifetime. As Black trans women, we are in fear for our lives! Already this year, we’ve lost multiple trans and gender non-conforming people to fatal violence, a majority of whom were Black transgender women. We need to do more — we need everyone in Atlanta and across the country to take action and show that Black Trans Lives Matter.”

Tori Cooper, HRC Director of Community Engagement for the Transgender Justice Initiative

HRC recorded 44 deaths of transgender and gender non-conforming people in 2020, more than in any year since we began tracking this violence in 2013.

More than 10,000 hate crimes in the U.S. involve a firearm each year, which equates to more than 28 each day, according to a 2020 report from HRC, Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, Giffords Law Center and Equality Florida titled “Remembering and Honoring Pulse: Anti-LGBTQ Bias and Guns Are Taking Lives of Countless LGBTQ People.” The report also notes a marked increase in anti-LGBTQ hate crimes, especially against transgender people. According to the 2017-2019 Transgender Homicide Tracker, three-fourths of homicides against transgender people have involved a gun, and nearly eight in 10 homicides of Black trans women involve a gun. Further, advocates saw a 43% increase in the formation of anti-LGBTQ hate groups in 2019.

At the state level, transgender and gender non-conforming people in Georgia are not explicitly protected in state laws prohibiting discrimination in employment, housing, education and public spaces. While Georgia passed hate crimes legislation in June 2020 that does include sexual orientation, the law does not explicitly cover gender identity. While the past few years have been marked by anti-LGBTQ attacks at all levels of government, recent weeks have seen marginal gains that support and affirm transgender people.

We must demand better from our elected officials and reject harmful anti-transgender legislation at the local, state and federal levels, while also considering every possible way to make ending this violence a reality. It is clear that fatal violence disproportionately affects transgender women of color, especially Black transgender women. The intersections of racism, transphobia, sexism, biphobia and homophobia conspire to deprive them of necessities to live and thrive, so we must all work together to cultivate acceptance, reject hate and end stigma for everyone in the trans and gender non-conforming community.

In order to work towards this goal and combat stigma against transgender and non-binary people, HRC has collaborated with WarnerMedia on a PSA campaign to lift up their voices and stories. Learn more and watch the PSAs here.

In the pursuit of greater accuracy and respect, HRC offers guidelines for journalists and others who report on transgender people. HRC, Media Matters and the Trans Journalists Association have also partnered on an FAQ for reporters writing about anti-trans violence.

For more information about HRC’s transgender justice work, visit

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Lambda Legal Celebrates Repeal of “Walking While Trans” Ban and Recognizes the Leadership and Advocacy of Transgender Women of Color

From Lambda Legal:

By Lambda Legal
February 2, 2021

Lambda Legal today hailed the elimination of the “Walking While Trans” ban, Section 240.37 of the New York penal law relating to loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense. Richard Saenz, Senior Staff Attorney and Criminal Justice and Police Misconduct Strategist, released the following statement:

“Lambda Legal applauds the historic passage of the bill to repeal P.L. § 240.37, the Walking While Trans ban, in the New York legislature today. Since its passage in 1976, critical concerns about P.L. § 240.37 have included questions about the constitutionality of the law and its potential for abuse.

“This repeal is a call for justice. It is a significant step to address violence perpetuated against transgender women and women of color by the state. The repeal eliminates a discriminatory law that has been used by police officers as a ‘stop-and-frisk’ to profile, stop, search, harass, and arrest LGBTQ and gender nonconforming people based on their clothing or appearance. It will remove an overbroad, racist and discriminatory law which is used to target and criminalize marginalized women – specifically and disproportionately transgender women of color.

“Lambda Legal wants to recognize the extraordinary leadership and advocacy work by transgender women of color, the Walking While Trans coalition, community members, and organizers to achieve this moment. This repeal represents years of advocacy, education, and organizing. Sadly, we have lost leaders and community members who have been in this fight – though their spirits will always be with us.

“We applaud Senator Brad Hoylman and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin who sponsored the bill. We thank Governor Cuomo for quickly signing this bill and providing much needed justice for transgender women who needlessly suffer because of unfair and discriminatory policing.”

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Iowa bill would criminalize medical treatment of transgender youth because they will “outgrow” it

Trans Eliminationist Bigots (TEBs) have all these brilliant ideas that have never worked. They will out grow it. Well no. Instead they will spend the rest of their lives trying to undo their damaged childhoods and large sums of money trying to undo the damages of involuntary puberty.

From LGBTQ Nation:

The bill’s author claims that after puberty, trans youth “will eventually have a gender identity that aligns with their sex.” (Pro tip: That’s not how it works.)

By Bil Browning
Monday, January 25, 2021

Iowa Rep. Sandy Salmon (R) has introduced one of the nation’s most egregious pieces of anti-transgender legislation so far this year – and with the numerous attacks already launched on trans youth, that’s a dubious distinction.

Salmon’s bill would make it illegal for medical professionals to treat transgender youth as medically necessary, saying they will “outgrow” it.

Treating the youth as recommended by major medical associations could cost a doctor their license and fines of $1,000.

The bill’s author claims that after puberty, trans youth “will eventually have a gender identity that aligns with their sex.”

Children do express their gender freely, but therapists and doctors don’t diagnose gender dysphoria unless the child has repeatedly reiterated that they identify differently and have shown emotional distress. Puberty blockers are a hormonal treatment that delays the onset of puberty – and therefore secondary sex characteristics – so that transgender youth and their parents and doctors can have more time to decide on an appropriate medical treatment.

The American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy statement in 2018 that affirmed the use of puberty blockers as part of a care model for young people with gender dysphoria.

A study published last year found that transgender people who wanted puberty blockers and got them were far less likely to have suicidal thoughts later on in life than transgender people who wanted them but didn’t get them.

“When we say something is standard of care in medicine, that means we have data,” Dr. Larson Ode, a pediatric endocrinologist at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital, told local news. “We are very clear when we’re experimenting on people and transgender care for children is not experimental. It’s standard of care and it’s standard of care for all our major societies.”

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Violent Far-Right Agitators Behind Vast Majority of Extremist Killings in US, New ADL Report Shows

From The Algemeiner:

by Algemeiner Staff
February 3, 2021

Far-right extremists were connected to “at least 16” of 17 extremist murders in 2020 as “extremist activity in general” continued to rise, a new Anti-Defamation League (ADL) study revealed on Wednesday.

“While there were fewer extremist-related killings in 2020, extremist activity in general was on the rise,” the Jewish civil rights organization said in a statement.

“ADL recorded 16 right-wing extremist-related terrorist attacks or plots in 2020 (through November), an increase from the 13 recorded in 2019. Additionally, ADL documented more than 5,000 incidents of white supremacist propaganda distribution in the U.S. in 2020, compared to 2,724 in 2019,” the statement said.

In its annual analysis of fatalities caused by domestic extremism, the ADL observed that social distancing protocols arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, along with a more proactive approach from law enforcement, had impacted extremist behavior. Data gathered in 2020 showed a “significant decrease from the 45 extremist-related murders in 19 incidents documented in 2019, and the 54 murders in 20 incidents in 2018.”

The ADL noted that in 2020, “there was an absence of mass shooting sprees, such as the August 2019 white supremacist attack on a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, which resulted in 23 deaths. It is possible that fewer public gatherings may have discouraged mass shootings of that nature, as well as early intervention by law enforcement, which thwarted several terrorist plots in 2020.”

Breaking down the 16 far right extremist killings in 2020, the ADL noted that “slightly over half (nine) were committed by white supremacists. Four of these murders were committed by people tied to white supremacist prison gangs, while the others appear to have been carried out by non-affiliated white supremacists rather than members of specific groups.”

On Thursday, the ADL will present a new plan to combat domestic terrorism — called PROTECT — at a public House Committee on Homeland Security hearing that will examine the events that led to the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riot. The organization’s CEO, Jonathan Greenblatt, said that the plan “takes aim at violent conspiracies, hate attacks, terroristic threats, campaigns of intimidation and harassment and other offenses.”

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Texas Republicans don’t want trans girls on girls’ sports teams

From The Beaumont Enterprise:

ShaCamree Gowdy
Feb. 1, 2021

Following in the footsteps of states such as Montana and Tennessee, Republican lawmakers in Texas have filed legislation that would prohibit transgender girls and women across the state from playing on single-sex sports teams designated for girls and women, according to the Texas Tribune’s Kate McGee and Aliyya Swaby. 

According to H.B. 1458, “Each interscholastic, intramural, or other extracurricular athletic team sponsored by a school district or open-enrollment charter school shall be designated for participation by only students of the same biological sex; or students of both biological sexes.”

The legislation was filed by Spring representative Valoree Swanson and prohibits the University Interscholastic League of Texas or the National College Athletic Association from taking “adverse action” against those who comply with the rule. Currently, both organizations allow students to play on the sports team of the gender they identify.

“This is bathroom bill 3.0,” said Equality Texas senior adviser Angela Hale, as reported by McGee and Swaby. “It’s very unsettling to transgender children who just want to live. They don’t want to have to come down to the Capitol and testify every single legislative session just so that they can live and go about their daily lives.”

A “bathroom bill”  limits transgender people’s access to bathrooms in public schools and government buildings.

The Texas Tribune also reported that Republican lawmakers also filed a bill that would make it illegal for doctors and mental health providers to provide care to children outside of the sex they were assigned at birth or prescribe a treatment known as puberty blockers, which transgender children use to delay puberty. The bill would also prohibit gender-confirming surgeries and hormone therapies, the Tribune reported.

“This bill is a common sense measure that is sadly necessary in a world where male athletes are robbing women of both championship trophies and educational opportunities,” Swanson said in a statement, as reported by the Tribune.

Echoing Swanson’s statement, Lubbock representative Charles Perry filed a similar Senate bill, claiming “individuals who are confused” could have an unfair advantage in strength and ability.

Contrary to lawmakers’ beliefs, a 2016 study is one of many that found no direct or consistent research suggesting transgender people have an athletic advantage at any stage of their transition.

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Alabama’s trans ID law requiring proof of surgery is unconstitutional, court rules

From NBC News:

Fewer than 10 states now require transgender residents to provide proof of surgery to change the gender markers on their driver’s licenses.

By Jo Yurcaba
Jan. 29, 2021

Alabama’s policy requiring transgender people to have undergone gender-affirming surgery before they can get state IDs that accurately reflect their gender identities is unconstitutional, a federal court ruled this month.

Fewer than 10 states now require proof of surgery to update the gender marker on a driver’s license.

The Alabama case began in 2018, when three transgender people — Darcy Corbitt, Destiny Clark and an unnamed third person — sued the state after they were denied driver’s licenses that reflected their genders, opposed to their sexes assigned at birth, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

“The policy for driver’s licenses, which is what we challenged with this lawsuit, requires that people either submit an amended birth certificate or submit proof of having had what they call ‘complete surgery,'” which Alabama interprets to mean both “genital surgery and top surgery,” said the lawyer who litigated the case, Gabriel Arkles, senior counsel at the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund. An amended birth certificate also requires proof of surgery, although this case didn’t challenge that rule.

On Jan. 15, the U.S. District Court for Middle Alabama, part of the 11th Circuit, ruled that Policy Order 63, the state’s driver’s license policy for transgender people, violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment because it discriminates based on sex.

“By making the content of people’s driver licenses depend on the nature of their genitalia, the policy classifies by sex; under Equal Protection Clause doctrine, it is subject to an intermediate form of heightened scrutiny,” Senior Judge Myron Thompson, who was nominated to the court by President Jimmy Carter, wrote in the opinion.

Arkles said that any time officials make a policy that treats people differently based on sex, “they have to have a very good reason for what they’re doing, and here they really did not.”

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Montana advances bill to ban transgender girls from competing in school sports

From LGBTQ Nation:

Montana has become the latest battleground over elementary school girls’ right to be part of a team.

By Bil Browning
Thursday, January 21, 2021

Montana legislators have advanced a bill to ban transgender girls from school sports through the state’s House Judiciary Committee.

The proposed legislation would require that elementary, high school, college and private schools that compete against a public school all reject the student athletes.

“It is unconscionable that Montana lawmakers are focused on restricting transgender and nonbinary youth’s ability to play school sports in the midst of an unprecedented global pandemic and economic turmoil. Transgender students, like all students, deserve the chance to learn teamwork and to build self-esteem and a sense of belonging with their peers through sports,” said Sam Brinton, vice president of Advocacy and Government Affairs for The Trevor Project.

The group runs the world’s largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people.

The bill will now to go the full House for a vote.

“At The Trevor Project, we constantly hear from transgender and nonbinary youth in crisis who want nothing more than to be recognized for who they are — and we know based on our research that respecting and affirming a young person’s gender identity is essential to their mental health and well-being. This discriminatory policy would only work to increase the kind of social isolation and stigma that contributes to self-harm and suicide risk. We urge the Montana House to reject this cruel and unnecessary bill, and to instead focus on expanding opportunity and support for Montana’s trans youth during this difficult time.”

The legislature is also considering a bill that would prohibit medical professionals from providing best-practice medical care to transgender youth.

H.B. 112, dubbed the “Save Women’s Sports Act,” is “a carbon copy of Idaho’s HB 500” according to Chase Strangio, the Deputy Director for Transgender Justice for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)’s LGBT & HIV Project. Idaho’s law is a similarly-named ‘Save Women’s Sports Act’ proposal that passed, but is currently blocked from being enacted by a federal court’s injunction.

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