Monday, January 14, 2019

Prevent Defense at the Legislature

The Texas Legislature is in session, as of last week. So I’m busy putting together a list of bills to follow. There’s a lot left to do, although I do have a few items so far under the categories of the legislative priorities we developed at the state convention last June.
Texas State Capitol

Usually we follow, and do citizen lobbying for, bills we want to have pass. Most of the time we don’t spend a lot of time on things we’re against. We’ve had Republican leadership, so that means a Democrat agenda doesn’t make a lot of headway.

This year we have a better speaker—which means we have reason to hope more conservative legislation will get on the calendar for a vote. But the minority party is slightly larger than last session. So there’s reason to be cautious.

As I’ve been going through the bills that have been filed, I thought it might be instructive to go over a few things we don’t want to see happen. Like I said, I don’t think these things have much of a chance. But maybe you should be aware of what some legislators think would be “progress” for Texas.

The state Senate has a bill, SB 150, attempting to codify in Texas law a right to abortion. Meanwhile a joint resolution, SJR 3, was filed attempting to guarantee the right to life of unborn children (to the extent authorized under federal constitutional law). That’s the kind of contrast we have between the two parties. Irreconcilable differences.

There’s a bill in the House, HB 513, attempting to set up a pilot program for distributing “long-acting reversible contraceptives” in public schools. I consulted Wikipedia to know what such contraceptives entailed: “Long-acting reversible contraceptives are methods of birth control that provide effective contraception for an extended period without requiring user action. They include injections, intrauterine devices and subdermal contraceptive implants.” So, either hormones by injection or subdermal implant, or a device requiring minor surgery—provided by a school. Why should a school be involved in this medical business in the first place? The bill says,

the pilot program may not distribute or provide for the distribution of a long-acting reversible contraceptive to a student who is under 18 years of age unless the school district obtains consent from the parent of or person standing in parental relation to the student.
Which is better than no parental approval for minors. Who is a “person standing in parental relation to the student”? It’s a legal term that would disqualify a parent whose custody rights have been discontinued. But it does not necessarily mean that both parents in divorce or separation must be informed.

In the category of Religious Freedom come several things related to privacy versus the LGBT agenda, which uses coercion. In the name of preventing housing discrimination, HB 188, forces landlords or facilities operators to allow transgenders or opposite sex individuals, disregarding the privacy rights of other individuals. It makes sexual orientation and gender identity or expression protected in the same way as race, color, religion, sex, familial status, or national origin.

HB 244, and also HB 254 (they look the same to me), creates a criminal offense for discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression in hiring practices by public, private, or religious entities. Again, this law adds “sexual orientation and gender identity or expression” to the list of protections from discrimination, which are race, color, religion, sex, familial status, or national origin. The additional harm of this legislation is that it allows prosecution for perceived discrimination or perceived possibility of future discrimination—actions that haven’t happened. A defendant is forced to defend themselves based on some person’s guess that they might be about to do something perceived as discrimination. Think Minority Report—prosecution before the crime.

Another one, HB 517, labels it “unprofessional conduct” for health providers to notice, recognize, or treat according to biological sex definitions that, regardless of actual science, run counter to the current LGBT agenda.

Here’s the definition of “gender identity or expression”:

A person’s having or being perceived as having a gender-related identity, appearance, expression, or behavior, whether or not that identity, appearance, expression, or behavior is different from that commonly associated with the person’s assigned sex at birth.
So, healthcare professionals, who presumably studied a lot of biological science to qualify for their professions, must disregard actual biology and notice—and then go along with—a person’s self-perception. There’s a huge science-denial problem there.

Also, people aren’t assigned sex a birth. Every cell in the baby’s body shows the individual’s sex with the presence or absence of a Y chromosome, from conception onward. There are some rare exceptions, with individuals who have a chromosomal anomaly, something extra, such as vestigial organs of the opposite sex; almost all these cases are clearly one sex or the other, so doctors, looking at the obvious evidence, “assign” the sex based on the physical evidence. Doctors making random decisions, or assigning incorrectly in these rare cases, isn’t a thing. And such cases certainly give no support to the transgender movement’s claims against reality.

Who are the healthcare providers to be prosecuted and disciplined for recognizing reality as opposed to a person’s anti-reality perceptions?

·         A licensed behavior analyst
·         A licensed chemical dependency counselor
·         A licensed professional counselor
·         A licensed marriage and family therapist
·         A licensed nurse
·         A licensed physician
·         A licensed psychologist
·         A licensed sex offender treatment provider
·         A licensed social worker
·         A special officer for offenders with mental impairments
·         Another person licensed by the state to provide professional therapy or counseling services
Specifically, the proponents of this law are lashing out against any treatment—whether desired by the patient or not—that could dissuade the patient from the sexual “transition” or sexual orientation that defies their biology.

This bill pertains specifically to the treatment of children, who, according to data, are highly likely to overcome gender dysphoria by adulthood if left untreated. But anyone who might know the research, be aware of the high likelihood of changes in the belief of people with gender dysphoria, the higher incidence of depression and suicide risk following transition, the high probability of regret and desire to de-transition (as in this story)—must not share that data, mention it, whisper under breath, hint at in professional or private settings. And not just mental health counselors, but also nurses and social workers. The law’s coercive intrusion appears totalitarian.

When we say our freedoms are at risk whenever the legislature is in session, this is evidence. So far we still have a majority in the state. But we’ve only had that since about the turn of the century. Prior to that Texas was a Democrat stronghold going back to its founding. We don’t know if the “redness” we have now is just temporary.

Here in Harris County, we’ve been half-and-half for quite a while, but mostly able to get more conservative voters out than the opposition. But the last two county-wide elections, we’ve lost. And now we have an inexperienced 27-year-old in her first job out of college as the county’s top executive, and a new county clerk who wants to spend a couple billion dollars to throw out the tried and true free and fair election practices, prevent precinct chairs—and thereby anyone from a party the clerk doesn’t want to hire—from running polling places, and return to the rampant fraud of the paper ballots that used to work so well for lovers of voter fraud.

at the Texas State Capitol
We have a lot of recovery to do in the county. And a lot of vigilance to do in the state.

Other bills to prevent include registering prisoners to vote, voter registration at the polling place, eliminating photo ID for voting. Plus there are minimum wage laws (outlawing entry-level pay), elimination of capital punishment, and preventing assistance to immigration officers. In other words, there’s a lot of mischief that could be done, if we don’t pay attention.

Prevention is better than repair. And there’s already plenty to repair, if we want freedom, prosperity, and civilization.

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