“F*** you @GovernorLittle,” tweeted Shiva Rajbhandari. “I pray you live a long life so you can bear witness to the pain you’ve unleashed on Idaho’s children and families today. When you do die though, I’m pissing on your grave.”
Rajbhandari, a student and activist who won his school board trustee seat last year, went on to criticize the signed legislation that criminalizes puberty blockers, hormone therapy, and transition-related surgeries for youths under the age of 18 “for the purpose of attempting to alter the appearance of or affirm the child’s perception of the child’s sex if that perception is inconsistent with the child’s biological sex.” Doctors who knowingly violate the ban face the prospect of a felony, and if convicted, they could land in prison for up to 10 years.
“This law is unconstitutional,” Rajbhandari said. “When government begins to intrude on the inalienable rights of the people, it forfeits any form of legitimacy. It is not just our right but our duty to stand up to tyranny. We will never EVER stop fighting for our trans and non-binary youth.”
A spokesperson for the Idaho State Police, which is tasked with providing security for the governor, told the Idaho Statesman the force is “is aware of the tweet, and we take matters of safety for public officials seriously.”
Rajbhandari told the local news outlet he is “unapologetic in my commitment in solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community.”
In a lengthy statement to Fox News, Rajbhandari stressed that his tweets “are my own only and do not necessarily reflect the views of any organization with which I am affiliated, nor would I engage or condone such sentiment or language in a board meeting or a classroom.”
Idaho became one of roughly a dozen Republican-led states that have now implemented laws or policies that crack down on sex-change-related treatment for minors.
“In signing this bill, I recognize our society plays a role in protecting minors from surgeries or treatments that can irreversibly damage their healthy bodies,” Little wrote in his signing statement, according to the Associated Press. “However, as policymakers we should take great caution whenever we consider allowing the government to interfere with loving parents and their decisions about what is best for their children.”
The American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho vowed to sue Idaho over the new law. Boise Mayor Lauren McLean, a Democrat, also expressed her disapproval of the ban.
“My heart breaks today for every loving parent of a trans child, every doctor who strives to offer life-saving affirming care, and every child in our community targeted by H71,” McLean said on Twitter. “H71 is the heavy hand of the government coming between parents who deeply care and doctors trained to help, and it puts our most vulnerable kids at even greater risk.”