Last week, a federal judge claimed that Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) repeatedly spread false information about what LGBTQ activists dub "gender affirming” care for minors.
According to a report from the Associated Press, Judge Robert Hinkle from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, who was appointed to the federal bench by Bill Clinton, is presiding over a legal challenge to Florida's state ban on the barbaric practice of genital mutilation of minors who have been led to believe they are transgender.
Here's how the AP reported on the story:
A federal judge hearing a challenge to a transgender health care ban for minors and restrictions for adults noted Thursday that Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis repeatedly spread false information about doctors mutilating children’s genitals even though there’s been no such documented cases.
The law was sold as defending children from mutilation when it is actually about preventing trans children from getting health care, Judge Robert Hinkle said to Mohammad Jazil, a lawyer for the state.
Despite the judge's claim, prior to the ban minors were indeed being subjected to genital mutilation procedures. The Floridian reported last year that, at the time, the University of Miami Health System was on record that it would perform such procedures on minors as long as one of the child's parents consented.
Here's what the website read at the time:
“Patients under the age of 18 will need parental consent for genital procedures. For patients with Gender Identity diagnosis, our physician staff will follow the guidelines of the World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH). These guidelines are established to ensure that you are fully prepared for surgery. They recommend one/two referral letters prior to undergoing surgery. These letters must be from an experienced mental health professional, who you have worked with for over a year. Letters must state that gender-affirming surgery is the correct course of treatment for the patient.”
Something tells me that Hinkle, who is expected to rule on the state's ban on transgender procedures on minors next year, couldn't care less about the facts. Hinkle blocked enforcement of the ban back in June, claiming "gender identity is real."
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“When I’m analyzing the governor’s motivation, what should I make of these statements?” Hinkle asked Mohammad Jazil, a lawyer for the state of Florida. “This seems to be more than just hyperbole.”
Jazil said the motivation behind the law was simply public safety in an area that needs more oversight and can have permanent consequences.
“It’s about treating a medical condition; it’s not about targeting transgender individuals,” Jazil said.
Jazil added that if the state was targeting transgender people, it could have banned all treatment for adults and children. Hinkle quickly replied that Jazil would have trouble defending such a law.
DeSantis has cited the Florida law he signed on the campaign trail, and mentioned it during the GOP primary debate earlier this month.
"I did a bill in Florida to stop the gender mutilation of minors. It's child abuse and it's wrong," DeSantis said during his opening remarks. "If you're not willing to stand up for the kids, if you're not willing to stand up and say that it is wrong to mutilate these kids, then you're not going to fight for the people back home."