SC Protects Children From Mutilating Surgeries and Gender Secrecy

May 14, 2024

The South Carolina Legislature has passed child protections that ban harmful puberty blockers, hormone treatments, and irreversible mutilating surgeries for minors and prevents schools from withholding information from a parent if their child experiences gender confusion. 

The law, HB 4624, overwhelmingly passed in the South Carolina Senate 28-8 and in the House 67-26. Governor Henry McMaster has expressed support for the bill and is expected to sign it into law. The law will take effect immediately upon the governor’s signature and would make South Carolina the 25th state to protect children from these experimental and dangerous procedures.

The new law states that a health care professional “shall not knowingly provide gender transition procedures to a person under eighteen years of age” and prohibits “public school staff and officials from withholding knowledge of a minor's perception of their gender from the minor’s parents.” According to the bill’s text, health care professionals who violate the law are “guilty of inflicting great bodily injury upon a child” and risk losing their medical licenses. The law requires minors who have already begun using puberty blockers or hormones before August 1, 2024, to have their regimen “systematically reduced” so they are be weaned off the drugs no later than January 31, 2025. The law also prohibits state taxpayer dollars from “directly or indirectly” paying for these procedures.

Traditionally, hormone blockers are used to treat prostate cancer in adult men, that is until doctors in the Netherlands began using them to attempt “gender transitions” in the 1990s. Attempting “gender transition” in part with puberty blockers then became known as the “Dutch Protocol,” yet these drugs have never received full approval from any government. While the Dutch government is now investigating puberty blockers, a large body of evidence reveals that puberty blockers and hormones cause irreversible harm to children and adults alike, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, and infertility. In fact, the warning labels on two commonly used puberty blockers, such as Lupron and Supprelin, warn about adverse emotional effects, including mood alterations, crying, aggression, convulsions, and increased fluid pressure around the brain. Further research shows that these drugs as well as mutilating surgeries do not relieve gender confusion nor improve suicide rates. 

Even though the evidence shows gender procedures are dangerous, health care practitioners have stated genital surgeries can cost between $20,000 to $100,000 while drugs halting puberty can cost about $1,200 per month. The “gender surgery industry,” which is expected to grow to a $5 billion industry by 2030, continues to administer these drugs and surgically mutilate children despite the increasing number of laws and surging amount of research and data.

South Carolina’s new law also strengthens parents’ rights by requiring schools to “immediately notify in writing” if their child expresses gender confusion or requests to use pronouns that do not align with their biological sex. 

According to Parents Defending Education, a grassroots organization promoting non-political education in the public classroom, at least 1,062 U.S. school districts have adopted secrecy policies to keep parents in the dark regarding any change in their child’s gender-related behavior. The policies span across 37 states and the District of Columbia covering more than 18,000 schools with nearly 11 million children enrolled. A 2023 survey by Center Square Voter’s Voice Poll and Noble Predictive Insights showed 66 percent of politically diverse Americans believe schools and teachers should “be obligated to inform parents” if a child changes the way they identify or changes their preferred pronouns. In September 2023, a federal district judge temporarily blocked a San Diego school district from forcing two Christian teachers to lie to parents and hide students’ gender confusion. However, judges in New Jersey and California have blocked school districts from informing parents about students’ gender confusion allowing schools to keep parents from getting involved.  

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “South Carolina has taken a major step to protect children from the harmful LGBT agenda. There are only two genders and both the medical community and public education system need to renounce the insanity of gender ideology. Counseling is the only rational and medically sound option for gender confusion, and moreover, parents have the right to direct the upbringing of their children. More states need to act similarly to protect children from irreversible harm.”

For more information about state laws protecting against gender ideology, visit Liberty Counsel’s website here.

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