Every state limits, and many prohibit outright, the permanent marking of children’s bodies.
Published in the Wall Street Journal By
The Justice Department last month filed a lawsuit against Tennessee, challenging a state law that prohibits the provision of “gender-affirming medical care” to minors. Such “care” includes not only off-label hormonal treatments but “gender-reassignment surgery” that alters a patient’s body to make it more like that of the opposite sex. Some blue states, meanwhile, are changing laws to ensure children can be subjected to such treatments without their parents’ knowledge or consent.
The effects of such treatment are permanent, and the campaign to make it available to minors stands in startling contrast to the national consensus about another set of state laws. Those statutes protect children from expressing their identity by receiving a procedure that one federal circuit court held to be a “purely expressive activity fully protected by the First Amendment.” I refer to tattoos, which are far less invasive, less dangerous and less permanent than treatments that supposedly change a child’s sex.