FLORIDA — The House and Senate concluded the 2023 legislative session with strong safeguards to let kids be kids. Governor Ron DeSantis is expected to sign significant legislation in the next few weeks that sends a strong message that Florida is a safe place to raise children, despite bizarre protests and death threats from LGBTQ activists.
A majority of Americans support restrictions and laws against medical treatments and drugs to block puberty or attempt to change the gender of children, even according to a new poll conducted by the far-left Washington Post.
“Kids should just be able to be kids, without having somebody’s agenda shoved down their throats,” DeSantis said in a speech at the Heritage Foundation’s 50th anniversary leadership conference in April. “It is wrong to teach a second grader that they may have been born in the wrong body. It is wrong to teach students that gender is a choice.”
GENDER = BIOLOGICAL SEX
The survey shed light on controversial medical practices often forced onto children who are not yet old enough to smoke cigarettes, let alone inject powerful hormones into their developing bodies often leading to infertility and mental trauma.
According to the poll, most Americans don’t believe it’s even possible to be a gender that differs from male or female sex determined at birth. A 57 percent majority of adults said a person’s gender is determined from the start, with 43 percent saying it can differ.
The Washington Post report included the story of a behavioral therapist in Daytona Beach, Florida, who participated in the survey and said her views on this issue have changed in recent years as she has learned more.
“At first I was on the side of acceptance, like using the pronouns and stuff, because I want people to be kind to each other. I don’t want people fighting all the time,” she told the Washington Post. But she now sees things differently. “My concern with transgender is mostly with the children.”
“We can’t vote until we’re a certain age, we can’t smoke, drink or whatever, but we can change our bodies’ anatomy and how it works?” she said. “It just doesn’t seem like that’s okay to me.”
Another study by Pew Research Center found last year that 60 percent of respondents believe a person’s gender is equal to their sex assigned at birth, up from 54 percent in 2017. More than 50 percent of young adults – often most accepting of “trans identity” – said a person’s gender is determined by their sex at birth.
LET KIDS BE KIDS
“We need to let kids be kids, and our laws need to set appropriate boundaries that respect the rights and responsibilities of parents, while protecting children,” said Senator Clay Yarborough (R-Jacksonville) at the end of Florida’s legislative session.
“As lawmakers, we have to draw the line when drastic, life-altering gender dysphoria therapies and surgeries are mutilating young children,” he added. “Whether it is a business that knowingly admits children to view performances meant for an adult audience, or schools that allow pornographic instructional materials, we must take a strong stand for child safety.”
Three bills on DeSantis’ desk will set a national standard for protecting children:
HB 1069, Child Protection in Public Schools, prohibits classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity in Pre-K through Grade 8. The bill also expands the role of parents in reviewing and approving instructional materials, with a clear process when a parent wants to object to specific content.
SB 1438, Protection of Children, authorizes the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to fine, suspend, or revoke the license of any public lodging establishment or public food service establishment if the establishment admits a child to a live adult performance that depicts or simulates nudity, sexual conduct, or lewd exposure.
SB 254, Treatments for Sex-Reassignment, protects children from being subjected to sex-reassignment prescriptions and procedures. Exceptions are provided for patients with genetic or biochemical disorders or certain injuries or illnesses.