AAP claim banning trans ‘care’ for kids is 'child abuse'

AAP claim banning trans ‘care’ for kids is 'child abuse'

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) late last month released an article arguing that the laws prohibiting transgender procedures for gender-confused children “amounts to state-sanctioned medical neglect and emotional abuse.”

On December 20, the AAP, America’s biggest pediatric association, published the article urging a “reframing” of the “discussion” surrounding laws prohibiting the destructive drugs and surgeries prescribed to children to affirm their misguided belief that they were born the wrong gender.

The writers, Emily George, Emily C.B. Brown, and Rachel Silliman Cohen, asserted that the prohibition of such interventions is actually “a form of child maltreatment.”

Setting up two goals for the article, the writers said they wanted to “refute the idea that gender-affirming care (GAC) [sic] is child maltreatment,” as well as “demonstrate how withholding GAC is harmful to children and amounts to state-sanctioned medical neglect and emotional abuse.”

Referencing what the article calls “a dangerous trend of transphobia and prejudice toward transgender and gender diverse (TGD) children,” i.e. laws that reaffirm biological reality, protect girls’ sports and spaces, and prohibit mutilating surgeries for minors, the writers argued that the laws “punish caregivers and physicians when they choose to support children.”

“They deny children access to routine health care that has been shown to decrease dramatically high rates of suicide and depression for TGD youth,” the authors said.

Transgender identification itself — which prominent leaders in the transgender medical field have acknowledged can be tied to “social contagion” — is indeed associated with astronomically high rates of suicide and suicidal ideation. Research published in March 2022 found that 82% of people who identify as transgender “have considered killing themselves and 40% have attempted suicide, with suicidality highest among transgender youth.”

However, existing research does not back up claims that those outcomes are ameliorated by life-altering surgeries or drugs.

Kathleen McDeavitt, an assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, slammed the original AAP article’s claims in a response published January 4.

In her comprehensive comment, she noted that the authors’ claims that so-called “gender affirming care” “‘does not cause harm’ and ‘decreases many negative health outcomes, including rates of depression’” are not backed by “relevant citations.”

“Although youth GAC has the support of the professional medical community in the United States, that does not mean there is no risk of harm,” McDeavitt said. She added that “systematic reviews have found the quality of evidence in this field is low, meaning the literature does not actually show, with any reasonable degree of certainty, that youth GAC decreases rates of negative mental health outcomes.”

McDeavitt further pointed to “multiple clinical research studies looking at hormonal treatment in TGD youth in which depression outcome measures did not significantly improve over time.”

The largest study of the kind, McDeavitt said, actually showed a substantial worsening of depression after the prescription of hormones. Moreover, two participants in a recent study analyzing the matter tragically committed suicide before the end of the research, she said.

Recently a 10-year study that had appeared to support the theory that so-called “gender-affirming” hormones and surgeries improve mental health was later retracted, with a correction explaining that the “results demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care visits or prescriptions or hospitalizations following suicide attempts in that comparison.”

Meanwhile, transgender surgeries and drugs have been linked to permanent physical and psychological damage, including cardiovascular diseases, loss of bone density, cancer, strokes and blood clots, infertility, as well as suicidality.

Even Dr. Kathryn Lowe, a board-certified pediatrician and member of the executive committee of the AAP Section on LGBT Health and Wellness, acknowledged in a 2022 virtual meeting that transgender hormone drugs would likely render gender-confused kids unable to have children of their own in the future.