This is not about protecting parental rights. In a legislative session dominated by anti-LGBTQ bills offered under the guise of “protecting parental rights,” parents who support their LGBTQ kids are having their rights stripped away. 

Whether it’s a parent’s right to access gender-affirming care for their kid, or to request a teacher refer to their child by the name and pronouns aligned with that child’s gender identity – these anti-LGBTQ bills only protect parents whose ideologies align with certain politicians and out-of-state extremists. 

The cruelest example, Senate Bill 480, bans nearly all gender-affirming care for trans youth, substituting the judgment of pandering politicians for that of families, doctors, and youth. 

Much of the furor about trans healthcare isn’t grounded in reality. Rather, it’s propped up by cherry-picked studies, fringe “experts,” a handful of political operatives from outside of Indiana, and fearmongering. 

Let’s cut through the conspiracy theories and get to the facts about the care that transgender youth receive in Indiana.

1. Being transgender isn’t “catching”

Proponents of this ban claim a rise in the number of youth who identify as transgender is evidence of a “social contagion.” In other words, they think that kids are suddenly identifying as trans to be cool. 

The reality is that increasing acceptance of gender differences makes it safer for young people to be open. There aren’t suddenly more trans people, there are just more trans people who feel comfortable being themselves.

I reject the notion that more trans people is a bad thing. Transgender Hoosiers are part of the fabric of our society and deserve to be welcomed.

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