Indiana State Rep. Bruce Borders (R) introduced House Bill 1361 Thursday, the text of which reads:
The gender listed on an individual's birth certificate and the permanent record made from the birth certificate under section 9 of this chapter may be changed only if any of the following conditions exist: (1) The: (A) person filing the birth certificate; or (B) state department recording the information; made a typographical or clerical error concerning the individual's gender.
(2) The individual's gender was listed as male but a medical test demonstrates the absence of a Y chromosome in the individual's deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). (3) The individual's gender was listed as female but a medical test demonstrates the presence of a Y chromosome in the individual's deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).
The very next day, the chair of the House Public Health Committee, Rep. Cindy Kirchhofer (R), said she would "not give the bill a hearing," according to Indy Star. Instead, she will focus on "addressing the state's opioid and heroin epidemic."
The bill met predictable criticism from LGBT activists. Freedom Indiana issued a statement, which reads in part:
"The intent of this bill is to strip transgender people of the most basic and fundamental dignity...HB 1361 seeks to deny the very existence of transgender people—with the cruel mandate that a transgender person’s birth certificate can never match the identity they live as and the person they have always known themselves to be."
When asked about the bill, Rep. Bruce Borders offered some stale BS, saying: "This was not a philosophically driven thing...I just respect accuracy in all legal records."
It's clear to anyone who hasn't been lobotomized that Borders' bill was aimed squarely at transgender individuals. Borders previously spoke out against 2016's Senate Bill 100, a "civil rights" bill that would ban "discriminatory practices in acquisition or sale of real estate, housing, education, public accommodations, employment, the extending of credit, and public contracts based on military active duty status, sexual orientation, or gender identity," while providing "protections for religious liberty and conscience."
In a letter to the state's Attorney General, Borders asked if the language of the bill was "unconstitutionally vague," and if certain provisions of the bill violated "federal law."
Rep. Borders is clearly concerned with protecting religious liberty that could be infringed upon by alleged civil rights laws that too vaguely define what it means to discriminate against the LGBT community. Such legal action has been seen before with gay and lesbian couples suing bakers, florists, and photographers over refusal of wedding services. That said, the birth certificate bill seems irrelevant. Moreover, to suggest the bill isn't about transgender people is intellectually insulting.
As it stands, amending one's birth certificate in the state of Indiana requires one to go to court. According to Indy Star, Borders said "his bill would not affect a person's ability to change other identifying documents, such as an Indiana driver's license."
While Rep. Borders perhaps feels it is cruel to indulge what he may believe is a mental illness, a gender dysphoria, the birth certificate bill seems strangely specific and unnecessary. It stretches credulity to believe a transgender person changing their birth certificate would infringe upon anyone's religious liberty.
Considering the microscopic scale of the bill, perhaps Rep. Cindy Kirchhofer simply didn't see its relevance.