The decade's most triggering comedy
North Carolina Republican lawmakers voted on Wednesday to override Democrat Governor Roy Cooper’s effort to veto a pack of legislation that included safeguarding parental authority in child education, protecting biological women’s sports, and banning medical professionals from performing gender reassignment treatments on children.
Last month, Cooper vetoed three bills that he argued Republicans served up as a triple threat of political culture wars to harm children and damage the Tar Heel State’s reputation — but the GOP-led General Assembly fought back with an overwhelming victory of enacting legislation and other bills designed to protect kids from radical gender theory.
House and Senate lawmakers made North Carolina the 22nd state to ban medical professionals from prescribing hormone therapy, puberty-blocking drugs, and gender reassignment surgeries to anyone under 18, according to The Associated Press.
Primary sponsor of the bill, Republican Sen. Joyce Krawiec, reportedly said that the state has an interest in “protecting children from long-term harm” caused by irreversible procedures before reaching adulthood.
Although the bill takes effect immediately, minors who began undergoing so-called gender-affirming care before August 1 could continue such treatments with parental consent or if a doctor deems it “medically necessary.”
The transgender medicalization of children has exploded in popularity over the last few years, prompting red and purple states to respond with a wave of restrictions.
About 300,000 American teens between 13 to 17 identified as transgender last year, according to data from the CDC’s Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System and Youth Risk Behavior Survey, indicating a sharp increase over the previous few years.
Although at least 31 states have proposed restrictions on the practice of child sex change treatments and procedures, only some states have approved their restrictions.
Wednesday’s vote was part of a pack of legislation Governor Cooper attempted to veto, which also included limiting gender and sex discussion in schools and prohibiting biological males from participating in female sports at middle school, high school, and collegiate levels.
Republican Sen. Amy Galey introduced the override in the Senate for the Parents Bill of Rights, which safeguards the parents’ role in their children’s education and to be involved in some school policy decisions.
“Parents have the right to direct the upbringing and moral and religious training of their children,” Galey reportedly said. “Parents should be seen as children’s most important advisers.”
“The same people who don’t want school choice want to control how schools communicate with parents,” she added. “This bill will strengthen schools.”
Independent Women’s Voice, who advocated for the North Carolina legislature’s vote to override Cooper’s veto of the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, celebrated the victory in protecting female athletes.
“No young woman, least of all those who are adversely impacted with sexual trauma as I was, should be forced to share a locker room with a biological male,” Paula Scanlan, Stand with Women spokeswoman and advisor at Independent Women’s Voice, said in a news release. “And because of this legislation, in North Carolina they won’t. I am proud of Independent Women’s Voice advocates who called for this bill to include collegiate athletes so women like me won’t face the same discrimination that my teammates and I did.”
Cooper aired his frustration after the General Assembly defeated the veto to override his actions.
“The legislature finally comes back to pass legislation that discriminates, makes housing less safe, blocks FEMA disaster recovery funding, hurts the freedom to vote and damages our economy,” Cooper said in a news release. “Yet they still won’t pass a budget when teachers, school bus drivers and Medicaid Expansion for thousands of working people getting kicked off their health plans every week are desperately needed.”
“These are the wrong priorities, especially when they should be working nights and weekends if necessary to get a budget passed by the end of the month,” he added.
Mairead Elordi contributed to this report.