On New Year’s Eve, US District Judge Reed O’Conner blocked an ACA rule that would have forced employers to cover transgender surgeries and abortion-related services.
The rule, finalized this summer, adheres to a broad interpretation of gender, protecting those who have an identity opposite that of their biological sex. It defines sex bias as including “discrimination on the basis of gender identity and termination of pregnancy,” says O’Conner.
The Department of Health and Human Services’ website explicitly states that denying transgender surgery is “facially discriminatory,” but many doctors point out that any surgery that removes or harms healthy sexual organs is not healthcare.
Critics argue the rule “pressures doctors to deliver healthcare in a manner that violates their religious freedom and thwarts their independent medical judgment and will require burdensome changes to their health insurance plans,” explains O’Conner.
In August, five states teamed up with religiously associated medical groups to sue the Obama Administration over the transgender rule.
Citing cases in which transgender identities have changed with age in addition to a 2016 Johns Hopkins University study suggesting that people are not born transgender or gay, the five-state lawsuit insists that the ACA rule inhibits a state’s ability to maintain authority over medical facilities and protect its standard of care.
“This [rule] runs roughshod over laws in Texas and other states that protect the independent medical judgment of doctors, which ensures the integrity of the doctor-patient relationship,” argues Texas AG Ken Paxton.
Following Pope Francis’ statement that transgenderism is a “global war against the family,” the Catholic Diocese of Fargo, North Dakota and the Catholic Benefits Association (CBA) filed a similar lawsuit in December.
Judge O’Conner granted his injunction a day before the rule would have gone into effect, saying the plaintiffs had “presented concrete evidence to support their fears that they will be subject to enforcement under the rule.”
O’Conner argues that the transgender policy violates the Administrative Procedure Act and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. In his nearly 50-page opinion, O’Conner writes that the rule would have required private healthcare providers to “perform and provide insurance coverage for gender transitions and abortions, regardless of their contrary religious beliefs or medical judgment.”
CBA’s Douglas Wilson points out that the groups involved in the lawsuit are not challenging the part of the rule that guarantees care for transgenders. “Catholic hospitals provide compassionate care to everyone, regardless of status,” said Wilson. “Patients experiencing gender dysphoria deserve no less.”
Editor’s note: The transgender groups have convinced a large portion of the population that their problems are base in nature. However anyone who has thought about it knows that is not true, that likely a majority have mental issues cause by their environment. The fact that they are considering these procedures for children (and see also this article for scary attitudes) tells me it the transgender agenda is dangerous and wrong headed.