In an official legal opinion issued on February 18, 2022, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton boldly declared that allowing children to undergo sex-change surgeries and use puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones “can legally constitute child abuse” under Texas law.
Paxton specifically states these procedures:
• can cause “mental or emotional injury to a child that results in an observable and material impairment in the child’s growth, development, or psychological functioning.” TEX. FAM. CODE § 261.001(1)(A).
• “can caus[e] or permit the child to be in a situation in which the child sustains a mental or emotional injury that results in an observable and material impairment in the child’s growth, development, or psychological functioning.” Id. § 261.001(1)(B).
• can cause a “physical injury that results in substantial harm to the child.” Id. § 261.001(1)(C).
• often involve a “failure to make a reasonable effort to prevent an action by another person that results in physical injury that results in substantial harm to the child[,]” particularly by parents, counselors, and physicians. Id. § 261.001(1)(D).”
In the press release announcing the opinion, Paxton declared:
“There is no doubt that these procedures are ‘abuse’ under Texas law, and thus must be halted. The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has a responsibility to act accordingly. I’ll do everything I can to protect against those who take advantage of and harm young Texans.”
Paxton also made some key observations in his opinion piece. First, he noted that no matter what sex change procedures or treatments a person undergoes, the person can never truly change his or her sex:
“[I]t is important to note that it remains medically impossible to truly change the sex of an individual because this is determined biologically at conception. No doctor can replace a fully functioning male sex organ with a fully functioning female sex organ (or vice versa). In reality, these “sex change” procedures seek to destroy a fully functioning sex organ in order to cosmetically create the illusion of a sex change.”
Second, he noted that all these procedures and treatments can cause substantial harm beyond the damage caused by sterilization:
“Beyond the obvious harm of permanently sterilizing a child, these procedures and treatments can cause side effects and harms beyond permanent infertility, including serious mental health effects, venous thrombosis/thromboembolism, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, weight gain, decreased libido, hypertriglyceridemia, elevated blood pressure, decreased glucose tolerance, gallbladder disease, benign pituitary prolactinoma, lowered and elevated triglycerides, increased homocysteine levels, hepatotoxicity, polycythemia, sleep apnea, insulin resistance, chronic pelvic pain, and increased cancer and stroke risk.”
Third, he stated that there is no solid scientific proof that sex-change procedures and treatments cause any benefit to minors:
“The medical evidence does not demonstrate that children and adolescents benefit from engaging in these irreversible sterilization procedures. The prevalence of gender dysphoria in children and adolescents has never been estimated, and there is no scientific consensus that these sterilizing procedures and treatments even serve to benefit minor children dealing with gender dysphoria… There is no evidence that long-term mental health outcomes are improved or that rates of suicide are reduced by hormonal or surgical intervention. ‘Childhood-onset gender dysphoria has been shown to have a high rate of natural resolution, with 61-98% of children reidentifying with their biological sex during puberty. No studies to date have evaluated the natural course and rate of gender dysphoria resolution among the novel cohort presenting with adolescent-onset gender dysphoria.’”
In a brave move countering the overwhelming support woke activists give to children undergoing sex-change surgeries and using puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones in order to try to change their sex, Texas Attorney General has given a stern rebuke, calling such procedures and treatments possible child abuse. Indeed, minors lack the maturity to engage in such procedures and treatments that can cause sterilization and other life-altering changes.
Let us hope that Attorney General Paxton can encourage more lawmakers, doctors, and parents to likewise come out in support of our children against woke ideologues who want to cause irreparable physical and mental harm to our children.