Conservative lawmakers in South Dakota have introduced a bill this week to punish doctors who perform gender reassignment surgeries on minors.
According to Faithwire, the bill will make it illegal for doctors to perform surgeries “for the purpose of attempting to change or affirm the minor’s perception of the minor’s sex, if that perception is inconsistent with the minor’s sex.”
Under the legislation, sex reassignment procedures performed on a child would become a Class 4 felony. The surgeries including castrations, vasectomies, hysterectomies, vaginoplasties, and mastectomies. It would also include the administration of puberty-blocking hormone drugs and the removal of any healthy or non-diseased body parts.
As child reassignment cases have recently taken center stage in media attention, namely the James Younger case in Texas, Republican State Rep. Fred Deutsch introduced the bill as a form of protection for South Dakotan children.
“An ever-increasing number of people who had so-called sex reassignment as minors now find themselves regretting the decision as they’ve matured,” he said, according to The National Review.
“Performing irreversible sex reassignment on a minor whose brain is still developing is wrong. But we can try to prevent harm to those who may later regret it by hitting the pause button before someone pushes a child into a mistake today that cannot be corrected tomorrow.”
Forty-seven fellow lawmakers have sponsored the bill in the South Dakota legislature.
But transgender advocates feel that the bill will threaten the rights of children who want to change genders.
“Every year, South Dakota lawmakers zero in on the transgender youth and…